Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Insane Tv Ad

"Eat all you want and still loose weight. And we couldn't say it on TV if it wasn't true!" O.K. so I know that TV is famous for outrageous claims. Why do you think that people believe these ads? Its not as if they are an authority or anything, so why does it work?


-Caitlin A.

21 comments:

penguin said...

I don't think it is a matter of anything other than people's desire to get everything they want and natural laziness. If you can loose weight by eating whatever and not working out it requires no lifestyle change and so people can get the body they want by just paying money. It is laziness in it's purest form. People need to realize that if you were to loose weight it requires a life change and people don't want to do that.

-Graham P

Seanna said...

In class discussion we talked about how people tend to resist change and stay in the "darkness" if that is all they know and are used to. People tend to not want to change their lifestyle because they believe that their lifestyle is right, they are in the dark and have not achieved enlightenment. Where as people who know in order to loose weight you have to change your eating habits and your lifestyle have come out of the cave and adjusted the the light.

Mr. Pseudonym said...

This reminds me of an adage: You have to show someone something seven times before they are genuinely willing to try it. And, that is purportedly true, at least for food. And if that is indeed the case, then it must be that people see it enough that they inevitably think, "Well, I have heard that...somewhere else...It must be true!" The magicians behind advertising are genuinely amazing at what they do, and the way they edit our thoughts to serve their purposes.

Dani said...

Well, depending on your metabolism, its possible to eat a ton and still stay "skinny". So long as you eat all the time, your body doesn't save the nutrients like fat since it is being regularly fed. (Its sort of the opposite to anorexics, who because they don't eat, when they do, their body holds on to all the fat it can as it instinctually believes that the person is starving/in a famine/etc.)
However, people will believe what they want to hear, and who wouldn't want to eat what they want and still lose weight?
When someone is overweight they probably don't want to hear that diet controls 80% of your weight while exercise is 20%, because that implies they need to actually *gasp* start watching what they eat, and maybe once in a while work out.

Mr. Pseudonym said...

Dani: please. where is your statistic from?

klneff said...

somewhat relating to seanna's comment... if they are to believe an infomertial, maybe it truly is all they know... ahem, no excersising and sitting on the couch? people believe what they want to believe sometimes, and well, gosh, doesnt loosing weight--- without technically dieting OR excersising sound fantastic, especially if you are already spending so much time in front of the TV? (wolf mentioned that you need to see something at least 7 times to be ready to do it... thats a while in front of the TV) We were actually talking about this ad today and how they justify what theyre saying (we couldnt say it if it wasnt true!) ahh, if only justifying knowledge and truth was only so easy. Mrs King would probably murder us. :)

katrina337 said...

...so we can read the fine print where they contradict themselves?

Kenshin_Himura said...

There is a whole study on the art of analyzing how to sell products...

Also, to add to the losing weight subject, for my editorial (conviently enough) I brought in an article involving how scientists believe that obesity is caused by an obscure virus.

Here is the Article:
Scientists Say Common Virus Could Cause Obesity

Scientists at the 234th national meeting of the American Chemical Society in Boston, Massachusetts this week presented the results of a study that suggests a common virus could be partly responsible for the obesity epidemic that is sweeping across America and other nations. They hope their findings will develop antiviral medication to treat "viral obesity".

According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), some 97 million adult Americans are obese. Obesity increases risk of many illnesses, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and osteoarthritis.

So far scientists have shown that genetic predisposition increases risk of obesity, as do other contributory factors including over-eating, eating foods high in fat, lack of physical exercise, genetics, and some medications.

In this latest study, researchers used lab experiments to show that infection with a common virus that causes respiratory and eye infections in humans, called human adenovirus-36 (Ad-36) turns adult stem cells retrieved from fat tissue into fat cells. But stem cells that were not exposed to Ad-36 did not turn into fat cells.

The scientists have also discovered that a specific gene in the virus causes the transformation from stem cells into fat cells.

Presenting the results of the study was Dr Magdalena Pasarica, obesity researcher at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center, part of Louisiana State University:

"We're not saying that a virus is the only cause of obesity, but this study provides stronger evidence that some obesity cases may involve viral infections."

Pasarica explained that:

"Not all infected people will develop obesity. We would ultimately like to identify the underlying factors that predispose some obese people to develop this virus and eventually find a way to treat it."

Pasarica and colleagues took adult stem cells from the fatty tissue of a range of patients who had undergone liposuction. They exposed half of the stem cells to Ad-36, but not the other half.

After a week, most of the virus infected stem cells had transformed into fat cells, but the ones that were not infected had not changed.

Pasarica was involved in an earlier study led by Dr Nikhil Dhurandhar, now associate professor at Pennington Biomedical Research Center. The study showed that Ad-36 caused fat accumulation in animals infected with the virus. The research team then carried out an epidemiological study that showed 30 per cent of obese people were infected with Ad-36, compared with only 11 per cent of lean people.

It was not until this latest study that they were able to show how the virus actually increases fat in humans, according to the researchers.

The research team has also identified a gene in the Ad-36 virus, called E4Orfl, that seems to play a key role in switching on the fat accumulation process in infected animals. The gene could be a target for a range of human therapies, including vaccines and anti-virals, to treat obesity, said Pasarica.

Apart from discovering that stem cells turn into fat cells in the presence of this gene, the scientists know little else about the virus, and they don't rule out the possibility that other viruses could have similar effects, creating a picture of obesity as being a complex disease involving different viruses.

For instance, they don't know how long the fat converting effects remain in the body once the virus has left it. There is a slight clue in a recent animal study where infected animals remained obese up to 6 months after the virus had cleared.

Pasarica said a lot more studies were needed, especially in humans. The team is carrying out further investigations into the factors that trigger obesity in some people with the virus while other infected people don't become obese.




Anyway, notice how there is no reference whatsoever to people just being plain LAZY! Yes, some obesity is caused by people who eat the wrong foods and don't excercise, in fact, I believe that it is the major cause... Why else would obesity get larger consistently in the US, when we are the #1 country to eat overly-fatty foods...
What are they going to say next, that people are starving due to long lines?

Wrightla said...

I think that part of the way people justify this is that they believe that TV is an authority. Mr. Pseudonym already touched on the "I heard it so it must be true" mentality. They could be justifying their belief in the claim simply on the authority of it being on TV.

StarD said...

It seems like they're trying to work off the idea of Tv always tells the truth... Well its just like saying that no-matter-what the Internet tells the truth. We all know that there are those sites where the dumbest comments come from which people could believe in it. I'm pretty sure everyones familiar with the wikipedia story. But because having your own tv channel is harder to get then your own website (like this blogger for example), they're assuming the general public believes in the TV more. Its just a way of marketing...

Dani said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dani said...

Wolf,
My mom's currently involved with an FDA study/patent so its from her research. Ill find the studies when i head back to her house

Mr. T said...

People believe these ads because they want to to. Really when it comes down to it, people only believe something if they want to believe. If they don't want to believe something, they don't have to and you really can't make them.

For example, I don't have to believe in TOK's teachings about knowledge if I don't want to. I can just think "I'll say all this stuff, get my A and get out" without really believing the stuff it says. TOK can't make me really believe the stuff it says.
(Just for the record, I do believe in what TOK is teaching. Please don't nuke my grade.)

So people believe ridiculous ads like this not because they're on TV, but because it's what they want to believe. They want to believe they can lose weight without working for it.

I pity the fool who believes everything they see on TV!

~T

kyle said...

It is absurd that we even have adds like this. Most of the earth's population would love to be a healthy weight, but don't have enough food to eat. In america the cheapest food is the least healthy, and theres so much of it people can't help but eating it. And why walk or ride a bike when your car has air conditioning. The reason people in Europe are not as obese as Americans is not becaseu of genetics, it's because they eat as much as they NEED and get exercise. THis country makes me sick

Lauren said...

To me this just shows how gullible our society really is. Just like Mr.Malone said if somebody really wants to believe something, then they can convince themselves that it is true. So i guess people can fall into the trap this commercial is setting. To some people this might just be the next miracle pill, that will finally help them obtain thier "dream body" but to be realistic there is soooo many miricle pills out there and to tell you the truth my belief based on Acquaintence and logic is that non of the miricle pills work permanitly. The only way to get fit and stay healthy is by diet and exercise. I think we should stop foucusing on the quick fix for things and focus more on long term solutions.

katrina337 said...

Note that in Europe they also have better health care. A lot of obesity is based on pre-existing medical problems that have gone untreated (trust me, I know all about this one, it took 8 years for people to figure out that I have a thyroid condition that's completely screwing up pretty much my entire body); if people could actually get treatment for medical conditions people would be a lot healthier as well. Not that the points Kyle made are invalid, I agree with them very much so, but there are other pieces of it as well.

pjuang said...

I know everyone said it already, but just to put a name on it, I think it's related to the whole pragmatic theory thing about believing what will best ease your psychological needs rather than physical problems...

lisaking said...

Pearl - great job applying a truth test to this! I think you're right on the mark with this one. The issue becomes, though, that it seems we are all in agreement that the claim made by this company is anything but true...yet it passes the test for being pragmatic. Now what do we do? (Think of the full formula - K = PJTB.)
Mr. T - Nice save. I was just about to annihilate your grade, but your concession to the TOK is PJTB has spared you. :)

Dani said...

Wolf,
its a FTC (Federal Trade Commission) on truth in advertising (weird correlation huh?) regarding diet and supplements

susanna.w said...

Hehe, my mother uses the "I heard it on TV!" tactic so many times to force me to eat 'brain food.' I think that people see TV as exaggerated truth. After all, some things on TV are true so why shouldn't all things be? TV is actually somewhat of a authority, just probably not a valid one. People also want to believe what is most comfortable with them - many of us don't want to work much harder than we do everyday to lose weight so why not believe the TV ad?

katrina337 said...

Seeing as it's truth and we don't like to believe, well, that means it can't be knowledge. because it has to be a properly justified true belief, and it's not properly justified, and we don't believe it...but it's true. but that doesn't get you anywhere. so it's true but it's not knowledge...