Friday, 23 April 2010

*XNEX - 'totally impossible for new fat deposits' to form

It looks like Health Base Direct are advertising all of their weight-loss products on a rotating schedule.

UPDATE, 27 Apr: ASA report "The ASA can only take action against advertisers based in the UK and against ads which appear in UK based publications. Unfortunately, the UK edition of the National Enquirer is produced and printed in the USA and then shipped to the UK. There is no UK editorial office and in determining whether an ad appearing in a publication falls within remit, we have to consider where the office, which is taking the decision to place the ad, is based. Although the advertisers may be based in the UK, we are only able to look into the content of ads which are published within the UK. In this case, the decision to place the ad was made in the US and we cannot consider the matter further."

Which suits me, because I love writing complaints to the ASA about them. And, according to their website, they have dozens of products in stock!

This time next week they should overtake Phentraform as my most frequent complainee.

This complaint concernts XNEX tablets, about which the advertisers, without a hint of shame, claim "Once you've lost those unwanted extra pounds...XNEX will continue to act, making it totally impossible for new fat deposits to build up in your system."

I hope no anorexic teenager ever gets their hands on XNEX! (Advert available here and here.)

"I write to complain about an advert in the UK/Ireland edition of "National Enquirer" (April 26, 2010, p37).

The advert, for "Health Base Direct", promotes "XNEX" weight-loss tablets.

I suspect that the advert may be in breach of eleven sections of the British Code of Advertising, Sales Promotion and Direct Marketing (CAP) code.

I can provide an original copy of the advert by post, if required.

1. Under Sections 3.1 and 51.1, I challenge whether the advertiser holds documentary evidence to prove any of the following claims, and I challenge whether the claims made for the effectiveness of the product are backed if appropriate by rigorous trials on people:

(i) XNEX tablets are the "very first 'fat eliminator'
(ii) 4 tablets of XNEX will make you "lose 24lbs"
(iii) Taking one XNEX tablet "every 5 days will enable you to lose 6lbs, guaranteed"
(iv) Users of XNEX will see "a weightloss [sic] of approximately 1 pound after just 8 hours"
(v) XNEX tablets "immediately eliminates the fat 'deposits' on your body's inner surface (stomach, hips, thighs, buttocks...)"
(vi) XNEX tablets "[prevent] any future fat deposits from building up on these same inner surfaces"
(vii) XNEX tablets "[makes] the accumulation of new fat deposits totally impossible"
(viii) Users of XNEX can "stay slim as long as [they] repeat [their] XNEX treatment approximately every 3 months"
(ix) Users of XNEX can lose weight while they "eat and drink whatever [they] want"
(x) XNEX has "Been Proven!!"

2. Under Section 2.1, I challenge whether the text of the advert is "honest and truthful".

3. Under Section 2.2, I challenge whether the advert has been "prepared with a sense of responsibility to consumers and to society".

4. Under Section 6.1, I challenge whether the advert's weight loss claims "exploits the credulity, lack of knowledge or inexperience of consumers".

5. Under Section 7.1, I challenge whether the advert's weight loss claims are misleading "by inaccuracy, ambiguity, exaggeration, omission or otherwise".

6. Under Section 7.1, I challenge whether the advert is misleading by failing to reveal the cost of a call to 0871 numbers.

7. Under Section 51.2, I challenge whether the advertiser is offering to the public a treatment for obesity without suitably qualified supervision.

8. Under Section 51.3, I challenge whether the advert is likely to appeal to people in whom the advertised weight reduction of "up to 24 lbs in 20 days" would "produce a potentially harmful body weight".

9. Under Section 51.8, I challenge whether the advertiser:

(i) Gives prominence to the role of diet
(ii) Gives the impression that "dieters cannot fail or can eat as much as they like and still lose weight"

10. Under Section 51.9, I challenge whether the advertiser claims that "people can lose precise amounts of weight within a stated period" and "from specific parts of the body".

11. Under Section 51.10, I challenge whether the advertiser's claims are "compatible with good medical and nutritional practice".

12. I confirm that I have no connections with the advertiser, the magazine, or with the publishing and weight-loss industries in general. I confirm that I am not involved in legal proceedings with the advertiser or the magazine."