Dr. Mehmet Oz
Causing Harm Since: 2010.
Dr. Mehmet Oz may be a two-time Emmy award winner, media mogul, and Oprah protégé, but he’s first and foremost a dangerous peddler of junk science and medical voodoo.
On “The Dr. Oz Show,” he has proven how much more committed he is to magnetizing viewers and winning ratings wars than promoting sound and scandal-free medical advice. No wonder why doctors, health care professionals, nutritionists, and scientists who actually enforce the most stringent medical standards and ensure the safety of their patients consider Dr. Oz “done, as far as science-based medicine goes.”
Dr. Oz “has cynically leveraged his celebrity status into becoming an irresponsible spokesman against products Americans use daily, whose safety is beyond question” — like fish. He has preached about the dangers of consuming “too much,” exaggerated the risks of methylmercury, and warned everyone — not just pregnant and breastfeeding women and children — to cautiously eat certain species. He has conflated mercury emissions from coal-fired power plants with the naturally occurring, trace amounts of methylmercury present for millennia in all ocean fish and welcomed environmental activists like Jane Hightower to spread mercury poisoning propaganda. Dr. Oz has even tested canned tuna, claiming his approach is better than the FDA’s, yet he refuses to share his methodology and acknowledge the FDA’s mercury limits build in a 1000 percent safety factor.
When he gives credence to eco-activists and their unsubstantiated talking points, Dr. Ozcontradicts recommendations from theDietary Guidelines for Americans, Food and Agriculture Organization/World Health Organization, and American Heart Association and neglects peer-reviewed research from theHarvard Schools of Medicine andPublic Health,Institute of Medicine,University of North Dakota’s Energy & Environmental Research Center,University of Rochester and the National Institutes of Health. All of their findings urge Americans to eat more fish and that the health benefits far outweigh hypothetical risks from methylmercury, yet Dr. Oz — even when we pointed out his errors to him — seems satisfied with his research team’s subpar digging.
Dr. Oz has repeatedly invited “the controversial alternative medicine guru” Dr. Joseph Mercola, to convince viewers that doctors cannot be trusted, eggplant cream and baking soda cure cancer, walking barefoot outside will relieve bodily exhaustion and dental fillings are toxic. AsCBS put it, “Dr. Oz [was] slammed over apple juice arsenic warning”, including two public censures from the FDA. Instead of abhorring diet supplements, Dr. Oz prefers giving a “theatrical endorsement of dubious weight loss products”, such as green bean coffee extract and raspberry ketones. Not to mention that one of his episodes asked, “Are Psychics the New Therapists?” and was cited as just one of the many reasons why he won the James Randi Educational Foundation’s Media Pigasus award for being one of “the 5 worst promoters of nonsense.”
ProEthics blog, Ethics Alarms, holds that “Whatever the reason for Oz’s complete abdication of due diligence and responsibility, he has betrayed the trust of the public that looks to him as an expert.” We certainly agree. He must stop giving anxiety-inducing, inaccurate advice before too many people fall for it — putting their and their families’ health at risk.
Instances of Harm: