The claim: ‘Shark Tank’ judges backed a keto diet pill
Trying to lose weight? An array of social media ads claim a keto diet pill purportedly endorsed by judges on the business reality show “Shark Tank” is the answer you are looking for.
A Facebook page called Purefit KETO shared an ad on Aug. 9, 2018, with the caption “Purefit Keto Shark Tank Official Product.”
Several variations of this ad have popped up over the years, with more than one keto diet pill brand being promoted.
In a video shared to Facebook on March 14, the One Shot Keto diet pills are pictured, with the caption “1 tablet at 9 p.m. you will be different every day! Why Every Judge On Shark Tank Backed This Product!”
This post generated more than 680,000 views in less than six months.
Another post shared on May 13, 2020, promoting what it dubbed “Shark Tank Keto Pills” received more than 3,800 views in less than a year.
The claim is false. “Shark Tank” judges did not endorse a keto diet pill, according to two of the show’s judges, nor has such a product even appeared on the show.
USA TODAY reached out to social media users who shared the post for comment.
No ‘Shark Tank’ endorsement
The keto diet consists of a low-carb, high-fat diet, according to Harvard Health The diet relies on ketone bodies, a type of fuel that the liver produces from stored fat.
While the diet is designed to help reduce the frequency of epileptic seizures in children, it has also been tried for weight loss, Katherine McManus, director of the Department of Nutrition at Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital, said in the Harvard Health article. It is unclear whether the diet works long-term or is safe, she said.
That hasn’t stopped people from making claims about keto diet pills, which are advertised to aid with rapid weight lossr. Keto pills are regulated post-market, meaning they are sold to consumers without inspection of the supplements’ safety or weight-loss claims.
The Food and Drug Administration has not approved keto diet pills.
In any case, the “Shark Tank judges say they have not promoted the products.
“(It is) not true,” Mark Cuban, “Shark Tank” judge and billionaire entrepreneur, told USA TODAY, expressing frustration at how the ads continue to circulate.
Lori Greiner, another “Shark Tank” judge, also said the ads were fake.
“If you see any ads that state I am selling or associated with any type of weight loss, face cream, or anti-aging product – I am not!” Greiner told USA TODAY. “It is a scam, I am not affiliated with them in any way & they are using my image & name falsely.
“I am very sorry if any of you tried to order from these phony ads. Please know I have nothing to do with it.”
The “Shark Tank” website also has a list of products that have appeared on the show, and keto diet pills are not one of the products.
Our rating: False
Based on our research, we rate FALSE the claim that “Shark Tank” judges backed a keto diet pill. Two judges from “Shark Tank” told USA TODAY they are not affiliated with the product, nor have any judges backed it. A keto diet pill has not appeared on the show.
Our fact-check sources:
- Mark Cuban, Oct. 7, email exchange with USA TODAY
- Shark Tank, May 21, Appeared on Shark Tank
- AFP Fact Check, March 23, Keto weight loss pill not endorsed by ‘Shark Tank’ show judges
- Harvard Health Publishing, Aug. 31, 2020, Should you try the keto diet?
- Business Insider, Feb. 25, 2020, Do keto pills work? Sort of but experts say the keto diet is better
- Lori Greiner, Oct. 7, email exchange with USA TODAY
- Lori Greiner, accessed Oct. 7, Beware of fake ads
- Lori Greiner, accessed Oct. 7, Lori Greiner Products
- Food and Drug Administration, accessed Oct. 7, Prescription Medications to Treat Overweight & Obesity
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Our fact-check work is supported in part by a grant from Facebook.