Dr. Oz: I Thought I Could Call Diet Drugs “Miracles” Because I Wasn’t Actually Selling Them

Dr. Oz testifying on Tuesday morning before a Senate consumer protection subcommittee.

Dr. Oz testifying on Tuesday morning before a Senate consumer protection subcommittee.

Oprah’s favorite alternative medicine mouthpiece Dr. Oz got little love during Tuesday’s Senate subcommittee hearing on the misleading marketing of diet products, with the TV personality admitting that his use of terms like “miracle” for unproven treatments had provided fodder to scammers out to make a quick buck off people desperate to shed pounds. Last night, the Doc went on Facebook to give his fans his perspective on the issue.

“For years I felt that because I did not sell any products that I could be enthusiastic in my coverage,” wrote Doc Oz, who was chastised — most notably by Missouri Senator Clair McCaskill — for shows where he called certain weight-loss products “the number one miracle in a bottle” or “the magic weight-loss solution for every body type,” in spite of little to no peer-reviewed scientific evidence to back up such claims.

“I believe the research surrounding the products I cover has value,” writes Oz, without naming any particular studies. “I took part in the hearing because I am accountable for my role in the proliferation of these scams and I recognize that my enthusiastic language has made the problem worse at times.”

As he stated during the hearing, Dr. Oz defended his choice to air programs about these unproven products by saying that the discussion is going to happen anyway so it should happen on his show.

“To not have the conversation about supplements at all, however, would be a disservice to the viewer,” he explains. “In addition to exercising an abundance of caution in discussing promising research and products in the future, I look forward to working with all those present yesterday in finding a way to deal with the problems of weight loss scams.”

The problem isn’t that Oz mentions these alternative treatments on his show. It’s that he’s often talked about such products with minimal questioning, and those caveats tend to only come later in the segment after he’s finished talking up a treatment’s purported benefits.

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