Evaluating Nutrition Advertisements
It is difficult at times to tell what is true or not in advertising. This exercise involves the critiquing of an advertisement to try to do just that.
First, review Module 2 and this recent news article from Week 1:
There’s a lot of bad nutrition advice out there. Here’s how to know what to trust.
Now, find an advertisement for a nutrition product (e.g. a natural health product, a dietary supplement, etc.). You may find your example by listening to the radio, reading a popular magazine, or looking on the web. Please include the advertisement example and its source with your post.
Use the terms below to help you critique your chosen advertisement. These terms are ‘red flags’ which you can use to determine the validity of the claims made in the ad. The more red flags, the more likely the ad contains nutrition misinformation.
Bent truth Misuse of terms Too-good-to-be-true
Fake credentials Profit Motivation Unreliable publication
Incomplete truth Scare tactics Unreliable source
Magical results Testimonial claims Other gimmicks
Given all considerations, comment on the questions below:
Do you think the advertised product is from a reliable source? Why or why not?
Does the ad make a claim or promise, i.e., effective, safe, ‘natural’? If so, is valid scientific evidence provided?
Do you think the information given is accurate? Why or why not?
As you listened to or read through the advertisement, what were some of the red flags you noticed?
Remember: In this discussion, you are critiquing the advertisement, not the product!
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