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FTC Smacks Down Diet Pill Marketers

Diet supplement marketers, including Bayer, have agreed to pay $25 million to settle deceptive marketing complaints filed against it by the Federal Trade Commission.

Ads for the four products, One-A-Day WeightSmart, Xenadrine EFX, CortiSlim, and TrimSpa, had aired on broadcast, cable, radio, on the Internet, and in print.

Claims that the FTC said were out of bounds ranged from raising metabolism to rapid and permanent weight loss all the way to reducing the risk of Alzheimers and cancer.

In the cases of CortiSlim and CortiStress, infomercials were "deceptively formatted" to look like talk shows rather than ads, said the FTC.

The FTC has been cracking down on bogus diet claims, including encouraging media outlets to better police the ads themselves. While the FTC has not gone after stations or cable systems for airing the ads, it reserves that right.