Here are the first four paragraphs of a story of great interest to me I found this week on AdWeek.com:
The company that manufactures Airborne, described as a dietary supplement whose vitamins and minerals help support the immune system, has settled its case with the Federal Trade Commission over the advertising and labeling of its products.
According to the FTC, Airborne, Bonita Springs, Fla., "Has agreed to pay up to $30 million to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that it did not have adequate evidence to support its advertising claims in which its effervescent tablet was marketed as a cold prevention and treatment remedy."
Airborne has denied wrongdoing or illegal conduct, but reached an agreement with the FTC and agreed to settle a class action lawsuit "to avoid continued expense and distraction from management of the business," according to a statement released by the company.
The FTC's complaint stated that there was "no competent and reliable scientific evidence to support the claims made by the [company] that Airborne tablets can prevent or reduce the risk of colds, sickness, or infection; protect against or help fight germs; reduce the severity or duration of a cold; and protect against colds, sickness, or infection in crowded places such as airplanes, offices or schools."
Me again. Now I have a tough decision to make. Do I....
A) Convince myself that Airborne works as advertised but they got busted by the Feds because the company didn't have the proper scientific research to prove their claims?
or B) Accept that the product doesn't work and that millions of us who swear by it, and have much anecdotal evidence to support our strong faith in its effectiveness, are just victims of a placebo effect?
Can it really be all in my head? Here's all I know. Before Airborne: scratchy sore throat every time I traveled. After Airborne: healthiest man getting off the plane. Am i a sucker?