As many of Off To See My Lawyer clients are running businesses related to the health industry, we thought you may be interested to hear the outcome of a particular recent Advertising Standards Agency enquiry. Six complaints were made about the claims of Miruji Health & Wellbeing’s product “Sit & Slim”. Miruji Health & Wellbeing had made claims in an advertisement in the local press, and on their website, that their “slimming and therapeutic massage chair and programme” had been clinically proven by the NHS to induce weight loss, relieve stress, and lower blood pressure. It even went on to say that the chair could provide a solution to obesity.
The ASA established that there had in fact been no formal NHS clinical research. A casual study had taken place at a mental health hospital among staff participating in a free trial. The hospital in question did not treat obesity. Therefore this aspect of the advertising claims being made by Miruji Health & Wellbeing was a misleading endorsement, and as such held to breach two of the CAP Codes.
With regards the claims that the chair could treat high blood pressure, the ASA considered that high blood pressure is “a medical condition for which advice, guidance and treatment should only be conducted under the supervision of a suitably qualified health professional”. The advertisements therefore also breached one of the CAP Codes (- in this case, the “Medicines, medical devices, health-related products and beauty products” rule).
On the subject of obesity treatment, and the claims that customers could lose weight using the chair and programme alone – the advertisements were held to have breached the CAP Code relating to “weight control and slimming”.
If you have any concerns about the legality of your own advertisements or the claims you make in your promotional material, please contact Jo Tall via firstname.lastname@example.org and she will provide you with appropriate advice relating to the CAP Codes, and any other legal issues that require consideration.