New Zealand Advertising Regulator
Objects to Chelation Therapy Claims (1995)

Stephen Barrett, M.D.

In November 1995, a New Zealand newspaper called The Dominion published an advertisement claiming that "chelation therapy has improved the quality and enjoyment of life for thousands suffering from the complications of circulatory impairment and age related diseases and illnesses." The ad invited readers to contact the New Zealand College of Preventative Health and Medicine or the New Zealand Medical Foundation for more information.

Not long afterward, the St. George-Wellington School of Medicine complained to the Advertising Standards Complaints Board that chelation does not abate aging and that the statement "average health can shorten your life by 20 years" is nonsense.

The advertiser responded by claiming that "chelation therapy by reducing arterial plaque and chelating heavy metals . . . improves circulatory capacity which increases the entire functional capacity of the body and blunts the effects of age related diseases and illnesses." But the Complaints Board concluded that these claims had not been substantiated and that statements of this nature could raise false hopes and expectations. Casewatch has the full text of the Complaints Board Decision.

 

This article was posted on September 4, 2015.

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