UK ASA Ruling on Yorktest Laboratories Ltd / IgG Food Intolerance testing

Posted 12 July 2021

Three complainants challenged whether the claim “YorkTest define Food Intolerance as a food-specific IgG reaction”, and the overall impression of both ads that the test would inform consumers if they had a food intolerance, was misleading and could be substantiated. Another complainant challenged whether the efficacy claims about migraines in both ads and depression in ad (b) were misleading and could be substantiated.

The UK ASA concluded the evidence was insufficient to support the claims.

Similar companies in South Africa make the same unfair claims, .e.g., ImuPro.

ASA Ruling on YorkTest Laboratories Ltd

  • 23 June 2021 ASA


Summary of Council decision:

Two issues were investigated, both of which were upheld.

Ad description

A TV ad and website for YorkTest:

a. The TV ad, seen on 29 January 2018, featured a woman described in on-screen text as a “Nutritionist YorkTest Laboratories” standing in a kitchen in

Read the rest

UK ASA Ruling on Bio-Medical Research Ltd t/a Slendertone

Posted 12 July 2021

An UK TV ad for Slendertone, a toning belt, seen in January and February 2019. A voice-over stated, “Meet Slendertone, your personal body toner, who firms and tones your abs, helps shape your waistline and easily fits in with your lifestyle. Clinically proven with results from four weeks. Look and feel amazing.” This product is similar to the advert shown on DSTV for Neotex Hot Belt.

The UK ASA concluded: “We concluded that the impression given by the ad, that the product was able to affect the size of the waist by visibly firming and toning the abdominal muscles, had not been substantiated and that the ad was therefore misleading.”

ASA Ruling on Bio-Medical Research Ltd t/a Slendertone

  • 10 March 2021 ASA


Summary of Council decision:

Two issues were investigated, one of which was Upheld. The other was informally resolved after the advertiser agreed to

Read the rest

UK ASA Ruling on DNAfit Life Sciences Ltd t/a DNAfit

Posted 12 July 2021

Similar to the South African company, DNA Analysis, who claims that they are able to create a diet based on your DNA, this UK company made similar claims. The UK ASA found insufficient evidence to support their claims.

ASA Ruling on DNAfit Life Sciences Ltd t/a DNAfit

  • 31 March 2021 ASA

A paid-for ad on Instagram for DNAfit, seen on 29 September 2019, featured an animated double helix and captions that stated “We’re DNA. We know all about your body. Fast twitch muscle fibres give you power. Slow give you endurance. And that’s not all we can tell you. Order your kit now at”. A caption under the animation stated “Unlock the secret to your ideal diet, vitamin need and exercise response”.


The complainant, who believed DNA testing could not be used to determine an individual’s diet, vitamin and exercise needs, challenged

Read the rest

Natural Cycles: ASA investigates marketing for contraception app

Posted 30 July 2018

Advertising watchdog launches formal investigation over description of product

Maev Kennedy Sun 29 Jul 2018 

The Guardian

The Advertising Standards Authority has launched a formal investigation into marketing for a Swedish app that claims to be an effective method of contraception, after reports that women have become pregnant while using it.

An ASA spokesman said it had received three complaints about Natural Cycles and its paid advertising on Facebook, which describes the app as highly accurate contraception that has been clinically tested.

“We would require robust substantiation from any company to support such a claim,” he said.

Read the rest

UK ASA Ruling: Elle Fox t/a Bubbling Life

Posted 18 July 2018

A website for alternative therapy provider Bubbling Life (, featured a page headed ‘CEASE Functional Solutions for Medication & Vaccine Consequences’, which included text that stated “… Dr Tinus Smits, the founder of CEASE, having seen over 300 cases of all levels of severity, concluded that CEASE is a ‘very effective way to address ASD and autism with amazing results.’ In his clinical experience, autism is an accumulation of different causes with about 70% due to vaccines, 25% due to medication and other toxic substances and 5% due to certain diseases”.

A complainant challenged whether the claims, among other, made in relation to the causes of autism on the page titled ‘CEASE Functional Solutions for Medication & Vaccine Consequences’ discouraged essential treatment for conditions for which medical supervision should be sought.

Read the rest

Alpecin “can actually help to reduce hair loss” – Not actually true

Posted 10 April 2018

A a consultant trichologist submitted a complaint to the UK ASA challenging whether the claim that Alpecin Caffeine Shampoo could “help to reduce hair loss” could be substantiated.

“A regional press ad for Alpecin Caffeine C1 Shampoo stated “GERMAN ENGINEERING FOR YOUR HAIR” and “Shampoo is too small a word for it. Alpecin provides caffeine to your hair, so it can actually help to reduce hair loss. Simply apply daily and leave on for 2 minutes … to help the Caffeine Complex penetrate your hair and scalp”.”

The UK ASA concluded: “Taking into account the body of evidence as a whole, we considered that we had not seen any studies of the actual product as used by consumers on their scalp using an accurate and objective analysis of hair growth, in a well-designed and well-conducted trial. We concluded that the claim “it can actually help to Read the rest

Copper Heelers

Posted on 17 January 2018

Do Copper Heelers have any benefits?

Claims are made that using this product will alleviate a number of conditions: “Aching feet; Swollen legs; Back & neck problems; Shoulder problems; Wrinkles; Sagging skin; Poor circulation; Sexual dysfunction; Postural problems; Poor digestive function; Cardiovascular activity”.

A consumer complained to the UK ASA regarding the claims being made for this product.

The company was asked to substantiate the claims, but as they could not provide evidence to support these, agreed to change the advert.

Read the rest

UK ASA Ruling on Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy

Posted 21 December 2017

A complaint was laid with the UK ASA. The complainant, an inspector for the Care Quality Commission, challenged whether the efficacy claims that hyperbaric oxygen therapy could treat the following were misleading and could be substantiated: burns, chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, hearing loss, interstitial cystitis, leg ulcers, peripheral neuropathy, referred pain, sciatica, varicose ulcers and varicose veins, Addison’s and Hasimoto’s diseases, anaemia, diabetes, brain injuries, candida, carbon monoxide poisoning, cognitive disorders in the elderly, heart attacks, infertility and IVF, Lymes [sic] disease, migraines, motor neurone disease, MRSA, multiple sclerosis, stroke recovery, Parkinson’s disease, prostatitis, soft tissue infections and urine infections.

We (UK ASA) considered that a suitable body of evidence would be required to support each of the claims. The Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Centre did not provide any evidence to support their claims that HBOT could be used to treat . . .

Read the rest

Salin Plus – natural salt therapy – UK ASA ruling

Posted 15 November 2017

An UK regional press ad for Salin Plus, a natural salt therapy, seen in the Down Recorder on 26 October 2016 and several other dates up to 17 February 2017, stated in the headline that “COPD, Asthma and Sinusitis sufferers can get relief with Natural Salt Therapy – No Masks or Tubes”. The ad stated that “according to pharmacists, this natural salt therapy service can improve the health of sufferers of debilitating issues including Asthma, Sinusitis, Rhinitis … Cystic Fibrosis, Allergies, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), Snoring and Sleep Apnoea”. 

The UK ASA challenged whether the efficacy claims for the medical conditions listed in the ad were misleading and could be substantiated.

Read the rest

Does Tumeric help your joints?

Posted 26 October 2017

In the United Kingdom, a press ad for the health supplements supplier FutureYou, seen on 28 March 2017, promoted the food supplement Turmeric+. The ad featured the claim “Support Healthy Joints with TURMERIC+” alongside an image of the product which included the claims “supports healthy joints” and “helps maintain flexible joints”.

A consumer laid a complaint with the UK Advertising Standards Authority, who concluded that the claims were not supported by scientific evidence.

“We noted that EFSA (European Food Safety Authority) had published a negative scientific opinion on the on-hold claims in question. The EFSA Panel had concluded that a cause and effect relationship had not been established between the consumption of Curcuma longa (turmeric) and the maintenance of normal joints, on the basis of the evidence provided to EFSA.”

Read the rest