The lies behind “body by milk”
Back in 2007, the FTC didn’t take too kindly to the fact that the dairy industry’s upbeat “Milk your diet, Lose weight!” ad campaign.
Or the claim that went along with it that getting 24 ounces of dairy every 24 hours would help you lose weight naturally.
So, the FTC told the industry to stop using those ads. A spokeswoman for the campaign said there was nothing wrong or misleading about the ads or their claims. She did say that they were planning to refocus on the vague assertion that dairy promotes a “healthy diet.”
A year later, though, they were still using the “Milk your diet” half of the slogan in ads featuring “The Biggest Loser” winners and celebrities like Brooke Shields and soccer star David Beckham. So, sure, they had dropped the “lose weight” part of their slogan, but they sure were working hard to maintain the connection between dairy and slimming down.
One 2008 ad featuring a popular boy band included the following text: “Some studies suggest that teens who choose milk instead of sugary drinks tend to be leaner.” And then in 2009, they launched the “Body by Milk” campaign, starring a whole host of slender stars. Whatever they might be “allowed” to say, they sure are still sending the message that milk will keep you trim.
Talk about skirting the FTC’s shutdown. I wonder if the FTC will be knocking on the dairy industry’s door again after a new analysis of studies on dairy and weight loss.
Researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health wanted to determine the validity of the handful of studies touting the twin theories that dairy may help people feel full longer or that calcium can keep fat tissue from building up. You know, the tent polls that the dairy industry hung their whole ad campaign on.
Not surprisingly, they found that the evidence just doesn’t support the weight loss claims. After looking at 29 studies, they found that any weight lost by people in “extra-dairy” groups could have been due to chance. And dairy didn’t help people keep weight off.
The bottom line is that dairy products add calories–in many cases, a lot of them. And naturally, adding all those extra calories to your diet is anything but a magical weight-loss secret.
But here’s the part the dairy industry will REALLY hate. The lead researcher said it’s just not a good idea to add dairy on top of your diet if you’re looking to control your weight. For him, the “bottom line is still energy balance.” You know, simply using more calories than you take in.
If you’re looking to lose weight naturally, don’t fill your shopping cart with yogurt and low-fat cheese. Instead, try throwing metabolism-boosting spices in your basket. Get plenty of sleep. And if you’re a man, consider bioidentical testosterone. (Other natural methods can be found by searching “lose weight” in the archive at www.wrightnewsletter.com.)
P.S. It’s easy to write off dairy as a weight-loss secret. But can you pass on the fad diets and magic pills, too? Yes! Click here to learn how.
“Dairy products won’t make you skinny, evidence says,” Reuters (reuters.com)
“Controversial milk ad campaign to end: FTC,” Ad Punch (adpunch.org)
“USDA, Dairy Industry End Dairy-Weight Loss Advertisements,” Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (pcrm.org)