Under pressure from Congress, celebrity Dr. Mehmet Oz on Tuesday offered to help "drain the swamp" of unscrupulous marketers using his name to peddle so-called miracle pills and cure-alls to millions of Americans desperate to lose weight.
Oz appeared before the Senate's consumer protection panel and was scolded by Chairman Claire McCaskill for claims he made about weight-loss aids on his TV show, "The Dr. Oz Show."
Oz, a cardiothoracic surgeon, acknowledged that his language about green coffee and other supplements has been "flowery" and promised to publish a list of specific products he thinks can help America shed pounds and get healthy - beyond eating less and moving more. On his show, he never endorsed specific companies or brands but more generally praised some supplements as fat busters.
McCaskill took Oz to task for a 2012 show in which he proclaimed that green coffee extract was a "magic weight loss cure for every body type."
"I get that you do a lot of good on your show," McCaskill told Oz, "but I don't get why you need to say this stuff because you know it's not true."
Oz insisted he believes in the supplements he talks about on his show as short-term crutches, and even has his family try them. But there's no long-term miracle pill out there without diet and exercise, he said.
"I actually do personally believe in the items I talk about on the show," he said. "I passionately study them. I recognize they don't have the scientific muster to present as fact but nevertheless I would give my audience the advice I give my family all the time, and I have given my family these products. Specifically the ones you mentioned, then I'm comfortable with that part."
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