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Scientists Fact-Check Dr. Oz, And It’s Even Worse Than You Thought

Daytime medical programs like Dr. Oz are questionable sources of science, at best, something they’ve gotten roasted for and straight up admitted in court. But nobody had sat down to figure out exactly how full of snake oil Dr. Oz’s show actually is… until now.

The British Medical Journal, in a study found by io9, watched 40 episodes of both Dr. Oz and The Doctors and studied the claims made within them. Guess what?

Approximately half of the recommendations have either no evidence or are contradicted by the best available evidence. Potential conflicts of interest are rarely addressed. The public should be skeptical about recommendations made on medical talk shows.

By the way, if you were wondering just how far down the ethical rabbit hole goes: The BMJ found that potential conflicts of interest were disclosed just .4% of the time. So it’s not only a coin flip as to whether or not there’s any truth to what they’re saying, there’s almost no chance they’ll admit they’re getting any money out of their recommendation.

It’s that “contradicted by the best available evidence” clause that should really get your attention, though. That means that not only are these shows full of it about half the time, what they are promoting might actually be proven to not actually work in a clinical setting administered by scientists. That’s really, really not good, especially considering the popularity of these shows as daytime staples.

In short, if Dr. Oz recommends something, or a relative sends you one of his “miracles,” asking if they should try it, tell them to flip a coin. It’ll be just as reliable.

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