Tips on Avoiding Fraudulent Anti-Aging Products

September 10, 2001

United States Special Senate Committee on Aging

Hearing on Swindlers, Hucksters and Snake Oil Salesmen:

The Hype and Hope of Marketing Anti-Aging Products to Seniors

September 10, 2001

Chairman Breaux’s Tips on How to
Avoid Fraudulent “Anti-Aging” Products

  • If it sounds to good to be true, it probably is.
  • Listen carefully to what is being advertised.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask questions about the product. Find out exactly what it should do for you and what it shouldn’t.
  • Research a product thoroughly before buying it. Call the Better Business Bureau to find out if people have complained about the product.
  • Watch out for so-called “Secret Formulas” or “Breakthroughs of the Century.”
  • Be wary of products that purport to cure a wide variety of illnesses (particularly serious ones) that don’t appear to be related.
  • Testimonials and/or celebrity endorsements are often misleading and sometimes are simply fabricated by the product’s manufacturer.
  • Be very careful of products that are marketed as having no side effects. This is a hard promise to make and an even harder one to live up to.
  • Products that are advertised as making visits to a physician unnecessary should be questioned.
  • Always consult your doctor before taking any dietary or nutritional supplement.
  • Always tell your doctor about any dietary or nutritional supplements you are taking prior to surgery.

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