Dr. Oz recommended 3 items as “Must Haves for Weight Loss”:
First was a Halsa Mat, which is some sort of kinder and gentler “bed of nails”, which works by stimulating the body’s accupressure points with thousands of little spikes. As the accupressure points are stimulated, cortisol levels in the body decrease, which results in less body fat. Cost: $40 online.
Second up was a fiber supplement with the name PGX. Looks a bit similar to the latest infomercial making the rounds, P90X, doesn’t it? PGX stands for PolyGlypopleX. Dr. Oz thinks that adding fiber via the PGX soft-gels or “granule stix” (think Pixie Stix…) will help prevent weight gain. He said the average fiber intake for a woman is 12 grams per day, and that 25-35 grams a day would be better. PGX soft-gels cost $20 for a month’s supply (actually, he meant half a month’s supply, since 2 soft-gels is a daily serving), while 30 days worth of the “granule stix” will put you back $30.
Curious, I went online to see what kind of fiber (and how much!) was in PGX. It’s a combination of konjac-mannan (root), sodium alginate (a thickener derived from seaweed), and xanthan gum (a thickener derived from the bacterial coat of Xanthomonas campestris, the bacteria responsible for black rot on broccoli and cauliflower)
Each soft-gel contains 0.75 gram of fiber. That means 2 soft-gels (the recommended daily serving) contain a whopping 1.5 grams of fiber, of which 1 gram is soluble. The cost for 1.5 grams of fiber? 50¢
If you want the “granule stix”, then expect to pay about $1 a piece for the stix containing 2.5 grams of fiber each.
So, the soft-gels will cost you $1 to get 3 grams of fiber, while the “granule stix” will cost you $1 to get 2.5 grams of fiber.
Does something smell fishy here??????
According to Dr. Oz’s own statements, to bump your fiber from the average 12 grams to a better 25 grams, you would have to spend at least $4.33 a day! That’s $130/month. And even that assumes you got a good deal on the internet (which I did, at 25% off compared to the $20 for 30 soft-gels that Dr. Oz quoted).
If you are interested in a fiber supplement, you can’t do better than psyllium. I posted on it HERE.
Compared to paying $1 for 3 grams of fiber with PGX, psyllium will give you 3 grams of fiber for less than 9¢. And if you buy the psyllium at Trader Joe’s (not organic, but about 40% cheaper than the Whole Food’s Organic Psyllium), you’ll pay less than 6¢ for 3 grams of fiber.
Put another way, getting your fiber with PGX is 10 times more costly than getting it with psyllium.
The last thing Dr. Oz recommends for weight loss is something he calls a “miraculous invention,” but it’s really only a modified crock pot. It’s the T-Fal Actifry, which Dr. Oz claims will enable you to “have your favorite junk food for a fraction of the calories.” It retails for $250.
Dr. Oz put in 1/2 Tablespoon of olive oil, then added a couple of handfuls of potato sticks (french fry cut). The Actifry cooks while continuously stirring the potatoes, resulting in a lower fat version of french fries.
Incidently, these are really easy to prepare in your oven. They’re called “Oven-Baked Fries.” Save the $250 and go old-school…
Dr. Oz stated that the “low-fat fries” he just made had 200 calories, and that an “equivalent amount of regular fries” would have had a whopping 1400 calories and 75 grams of fat.
I know Dr. Oz graduated from medical school, but he must have had some help with his math courses.
Allowing for about 60 calories for the 1/2 Tablespoon of olive oil, that means 140 calories were provided by the potato. This is about 5 ounces of raw potato.
In order to get 1400 calories from a serving of regular french fries (I used french fries from McDonald’s), you would need 15 ounces of french fries. Dr. Oz’s serving was barely over 5 ounces. So Dr. Oz is comparing the calorie count of his small 5 ounce serving of low-fat fries (Actifries?) to a mammoth 15 ounce serving of regular fries? Dr. Oz, you’re off by a factor of 3!
That doesn’t surprise me, since when Dr. Oz was telling the calorie counts and sugar content of movie theatre soda and fruit punch, he made another “factor of 3 goof.”
He said a large soda had 500 calories, and 33 Tablespoons of sugar, while a large fruit punch had 840 calories and 49 Tablespoons of sugar.
Well, Dr. Oz’s fact checkers must have been napping, because any self-respecting calorie-counter knows that a Tablespoon of sugar has 45 calories, while a teaspoon has 15 calories. 49 Tablespoons of sugar would have 2,205 calories, not 840!.
Dr. Oz should have said “Teaspoons, not Tablespoons.”
Am I splitting hairs? Perhaps, but this guy is a physician with a wildly popular show, and I’d say accuracy is important.
By the way, I sent the Dr. Oz show a letter bringing this and other errors to light, and I am currently awaiting a job offer as a fact checker (or at least an e-mailed response back before 2015…)
Have you noticed mistakes on the Dr. Oz show? Tell me about them!
Robert J. Stone