Sunday, January 30, 2011

Find Out More About SmartLean and Fucoxanthin

A new full-page ad in today's paper is selling a pill called SmartLean, which is said to speed weight loss, particularly by increasing metabolism and burning fat.

Full page ad for SmartLean with Fucoxanthin
I'm not going to go into details about the many problems I see with the ad itself (no price is given for the product, it imposes a scarcity deadline to cause us to act now!, and it's designed to look like it's part of the newspaper rather than an ad in the first place -- the usual style of its creators, the Universal Media Syndicate).

But I will say this:

The active ingredient is Fucoxanthin, which comes from seaweed. If you're interested in buying this product, shop around on the price.

Don't be lulled by the information the ad gives about two clinical trials of 151 people. Those studies were paid for by businesses with a financial interest in seeing them succeed, and this type of incentive has often resulted in skewed results in the past. According to fitness coach Tom Venuto,

...even when a single study shows what seem like promising results, I always want to see it replicated by an independent (unbiased) research group before I would ever recommend it. It's astonishing to see how many supplement-company sponsored studies are never replicated by any other research group. Or, other research groups refute the findings of the first study after addressing flaws in the original study design.
Take that little footnote at the bottom of the ad to heart: The statements in the ad "have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration."

No comments: