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Don't be so quick to trust Dr. Oz

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#1 Orpheus


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Posted 08 January 2013 - 04:22 AM

I suppose there's always been a number of well-known or "media" docs advocating what can perhaps most charitably be described as "leading the literature". I've even known a couple who started out as solid sources but lost my respect -- perhaps seduced by the celebrity and the needs of the market. And don't even get me started on Deepak Chopra, who, as a cardiology resident at a hospital where I trained, was reportedly one of the most materialistic residents in any attending's recent memory.

Today's biggest media darling is probably Dr. Oz, but Slate has a good article with a chart of examples at the end, explaining why you probably shouldn't immediately leap on his bandwagon du jour.

#2 Raeven


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Posted 08 January 2013 - 05:50 AM

I only heard about this guy recently [Nikki told me about him]...I did some research and I don't think I'll be following his advice any time soon ;)

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#3 Tricia


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Posted 08 January 2013 - 11:29 AM

Not a fan here either and can't really remember why at the moment.

l tend to be skeptical of anything or anyone who claims something is a miracle cure anyway and some throw that word around a lot.

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#4 QueenTiye


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Posted 08 January 2013 - 11:39 AM

While at the Dr's office (!!!), I got to see his show for the first time.  And I remember thinking how awful it was.  Not so much the dietary advice he was giving, but the fact that he asked the same questions at least 5 times, each time yielding the same answers, sometimes not even worded all that differently, in order to fill in a half-hour timeslot.  Honestly - the content was 3 paragraphs long, and there wasn't anything else to add to it - essentially the stuff that you read in popular magazines (Ms., US, etc) that form sidebars with pictures.  How could anyone sit through a show that was this insipid, unless they, like me, were captive audiences?

I haven't clicked through to the Slate article yet, but I know that I found the show far too mass-market as to be reliably believable.


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#5 Sci-Fi Girl

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 12:06 PM

Yeah, I don't trust any popularist (?) daytime TV Doctor.  :rolleyes:

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#6 Themis

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 10:22 AM

The article seems to suggest no benefit from fish oil, vitamin D or multi-vitamin supplements.  True?  

I've watched Oz on occasion just because the tv is on that station when I turn it on and decided I couldn't trust anyone with "miracle cures" every episode, especially for weight loss.
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#7 Orpheus


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Posted 13 March 2013 - 04:30 PM

To be precise, the studies cited showed no benefit to omega-3 Fish Oil or Vitamin D supplements in cardiovascular disease or multivitamin supplements in preventing cardiovascular disease, cancer, etc. They certainly have other benefits, especially if your diet is lacking. Also, some of those trials fail to address key cohort factors. For example,  many people take supplements because they *know* their diet is poor, and the supplements may be doing some good, but not enough to make up for all the other stuff these people aren't getting in their diet (and all the nasty stuff they are). One of the studies showed a strong association between multivitamin supplement use in postmenopausal women and increased risk of death: "vitamins kill you" or "sick people are more likely to take vitamins"

That "rebuttal" studies really aren't surprising, as those conditions are not the primary indications for those supplements. Vitamin D primarily controls calcium metabolism NOT anything cardiovascular; ditto the "basics" in a multivitamin are needed by the body (and deficiencies were long ago proven to cause disease). Taking such supplements to prevent or assist in cardiovascular conditions is much trendier, but unproven at best. The quest isn't snake oil: researchers will keep looking for corellations, and some will likely be greatly beneficial. Telling people to ACT on those findings -- that's where the snake oil starts

We HAVE often found "unexpected benefits". Folic acid (vitamin B9), first identified as "vital" for growth/vigor in the 1800s, was shown in the early 1990s, to be vital in embryonic spinal development -- giving supplements to pregnant women dramatically cut spinal tube defects in just a few years. "Preventative" aspirin reduces colon cancer (both onset and mortality), but even if those studies were someday found to be misleading, that wouldn't mean it had "no benefit" -- it's still effective for inflammatory conditions, cardiovascular event prevention in certain at-risk populations, and much more.

Most people derive little benefit from multivitamins because their diet is "vaguely good enough". Those with thoughtful balanced diets won't benefit at all. A good diet provides all sorts of cofactors and related chemicals that our bodies have come to expect to be associated with a givne substance. It may not need tehm, but it can benefit from them, if present. Multivitamins only assure "a barely passing grade".

#8 Themis

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 09:02 AM

Ah.  I thought the fish oil supplements were supposed to help with cholesterol, particularly triglycerides.  

In any event, I'd love to see how anyone manages to take/eat everything Oz recommends - the latest Oz induced fad seems to be green coffee or some such.   They'd probably gain a few pounds in water weight from taking all those pills.
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#9 AaronRic

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Posted 11 September 2017 - 07:51 AM

I wouldnt trust him since I cant even trust people I have known for years. I would be exetremly cautious with this boy, dont let him get into your back pocket just yet.

#10 Omega


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Posted 11 September 2017 - 12:16 PM

Yeah, vitamins aren't some magical energy meter. You can't gain superpowers by taking more than what you actually need.  A deficiency will hurt you, but megadoses won't do anything but fix a deficiency. You can't cure a cold with ridiculous amounts of vitamin C, either.  But a deficiency could make it last longer!

My wife has commented more than once that every patient she ever did tests on was deficient in Vitamin D.  Of course, there's some selection bias there; her patients were largely limited in mobility.  But I find that I just generally feel much better when taking D supplements, for whatever reason, real or placebo.

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