Jogging in a Jug is a juice-based dietary supplement created by former Alabama dairy farmer Jack McWilliams as a way for he and his wife to stay healthy. McWilliams eventually began marketing the product in the early 1990s. It became quite successful until concerns over McWilliams’ unsubstantiated health claims about the product led to charges from the Federal Trade Commission; the case was settled in 1995.
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Apple Cider Vinegar
The key ingredient in Jogging in a Jug is apple cider vinegar. The Internet is rife with claims that vinegar made from apple cider has amazing fat-burning capabilities. Proponents of apple cider vinegar believe that simply swallowing a spoonful of apple cider vinegar before meals and prior to bedtime accelerates your metabolism and causes your body to burn accumulated fat. According to dietitian Katherine Zeratsky of MayoClinic.com, there is little scientific evidence to back up these claims, and it is unlikely that apple cider vinegar will help you lose weight.
Jogging in a Jug
McWilliams’ initial claims about Jogging in a Jug went far beyond burning fat. According to the FTC, Jogging in a Jug claimed to provide users with all the health benefits they would receive from jogging; other claimed benefits included alleviating heart disease and arthritis, lowering cholesterol and triglycerides, lowering the risk of cancer and cleansing internal organs. The FTC noted that Jogging in a Jug purported to be approved by the U.S. Department of Agriculture; it was not.
Although the Jogging in a Jug recipe is a proprietary secret, various websites contain instructions on how to make a homemade version. For example, on her website CD Kitchen, Valerie Whitmore offers a recipe of her version, using 1 quart of red grape juice, 2 quarts of apple juice, 3/4 cup apple cider vinegar and 3/4 cup honey. Apple cider vinegar, warns Zeratsky, is highly acidic and may be irritating to your throat, although the addition of fruit juice makes the vinegar more palatable and the honey soothes the throat.
The unsubstantiated health claims that McWilliams attributed to Jogging in a Jug landed him in trouble with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the FTC. According to a story appearing in April 1995 in the “Los Angeles Times,” McWilliams’ company, Third Option Laboratories, Inc., was ordered to pay $480,000 to settle the FTC’s charges that the company made “false and unsubstantiated health claims.” As part of the settlement, the company agreed to add the following disclaimer to all future advertising: “There is no scientific evidence that Jogging in a Jug [or other name] provides any health benefits.”