My blog started in March of this year, when I found out about Live Blood Analysis (and the related Alkaline Diet). It is a practice promoted and taught by ‘Dr’ Robert O Young (subject of my second adjudication), based on the laughable and long-disproven theory of (extreme) pleomorphism (the idea that the body’s own cells transform into bacteria and fungi).
Since March, I have made a series of complaints to the Advertising Standards Authority about misleading and unsubstantiated claims made by LBA practitioners. The majority of these have been informally resolved (when the advertisers agreed to remove problematic claims). Unfortunately some practitioners did not agree to remove their claims. According to this letter from the ASA, they aren’t going to pursue all my complaints formally but will instead focus on one or two. The letter also said “if Council goes on to make a formal adjudication, we will in all likelihood follow up with compliance action across the sector”.
I am hopeful that this is such an adjudication.
It relates to a Groupon promotion for Errol Denton’s livebloodtest.com and was originally brought to my attention by a comment on my first blog piece (much of which was about Denton’s advertising). Despite the adjudication, it is still online as I write, and has apparently resulted in 1534 sales (a figure which has intriguingly dropped from 2997 since I first saw it in April). It has also resulted in some very disgruntled customers.
It is not possible to detect food intolerances or allergies by looking at blood cells under a microscope. The idea that this can also help you to lose weight or ‘battle fatigue’ is equally ludicrous and the notion of ‘helping maintain the body’s natural defence mechanism’ makes little sense.
Groupon were of course unable to substantiate any claims relating to allergies or intolerances and as far as the other claims were concerned, they pointed out that Denton would be able to give sensible lifestyle and eating plans following the consultation.
Based on what I already know about his lack of understanding of human biology, the idea of him giving ‘sensible advice’ is laughable. For example, my first ASA adjudication related in part to his claim that chlorophyll is a potent blood deodorizer.
Unsurprisingly, the ASA concluded that Groupon had also failed to provide evidence to substantiate the claims that the results of live blood testing could be used to formulate nutritional advice, ‘assist with weight loss’, ‘help battle fatigue’ or ‘maintain the body’s natural defence mechanism’.
The ad was found to be in breach of the CAP Code (Edition 12) rules 3.1 (Misleading advertising), 3.7 (Substantiation), 3.11 (Exaggeration) and 12.1 (Medicines, medical devices, health-related products and beauty products).