Its about time, but at least it happened. Dr. Mehmet Oz, who gained worldwide acclaim for his midday talk show about “health”, although most episodes focus on metabolism, weight loss and weight issues, has finally been asked to answer some questions about his plethora of “weight loss miracles”.
Tuesday Dr. Oz faced a number of senators during a hearing concerning “The Dr. Oz Effect”. During the hearing, Oz was scolded harshly and asked to answer some tough questions about the claims he makes on his talk show.
Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill looked right at the doctor and asked bluntly “I don’t get why you need to say this stuff because you know it’s not true… So why, when you have this amazing megaphone…why would you cheapen your show by saying things like that?”
I was a fan of Doctor Oz for awhile, and then I recovered from my addiction to feed my eating disorder. As someone who has struggled with anorexia for over fifteen years, I remember the point where I realized that I only watched his show for one reason – to learn new ways to lose weight. His show has always catered to people looking to lose weight, and he rarely, RARELY discussed people who might need to gain weight – whether they have an eating disorder or not.
At one point I emailed Dr. Oz asking to talk about eating disorders on his show. I never heard back about that, but instead I received emails about castings for shows about weight loss. I think he lacks morals and only cares about increasing his profits even if it is at the expense of his audience. It is about time someone like him, who is so influential to many, is asked to answer for his claims that could put the lives of people at risk.
Dr. Oz isn’t the only tv icon that people look to for advice on weight loss. Jillian Michaels received heat after the last season of Biggest Loser when the winner was shown looking emaciated and accused of having anorexia. I am not going to say she had or did not have an eating disorder, but I can tell you that Rachel had a BMI categorizing her as “extremely underweight”, which is unhealthy even if you don’t have an eating disorder.
I hope this is the start of a new trend, where celebrities are actually held accountable for their actions. I hope people talk about this hearing and realize that he is not a solution, he is a problem, and that this is not just about Doctor Oz, it is about worldwide influences as a whole, and how they can’t just say whatever they want.