No Approved Therapeutic Claims: The Effect of Ampalaya Supplement Television Commercials on Health Behavior of Diabetics-Those at Risk of Diabetes

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This thesis focused on how diabetics/those at risk of diabetes are influenced by the messages in ampalaya food supplement television advertisements, as well as how their attitudes and behavior change in line with their general view on health and nutrition.

Review of literature revealed that the use of food supplements is often associated with a healthy lifestyle. Furthermore, herbal medicines and food supplements are promoted for preventive care, but a significant number of patients take these to treat a disease.

There were four communication models used in this study, namely, the Health Belief Model, the Elaboration Likelihood Model, and the Theory of Planned Behavior/Reasoned Action, and the Steps to Behavior Change Model. Concepts from each of the theories were adopted in order to come up with an integrated conceptual/operational framework.

The researcher used a textual analysis form that highlighted the communicative,visual, and aural aspects of ampalaya supplement television advertisements (i.e., ABS Bitter Herbs, Ampalaya Plus, Charantia, and GluControl). She also conducted a survey of 100 diabetics and people at risk of being diabetics. Both methods employed a nonprobability purposive sampling.

Findings of the study revealed that ampalaya supplement television advertisements use communicative, visual, and aural aspects in order to convey messages. It was found that the most common message in these commercials is “With a balanced diet, regular exercise, and ampalaya supplements, diabetes can be prevented/controlled.” The use of celebrity endorsers including newscasters) was also common in the advertisements.

Those with higher educational attainment, those with higher income, and those who have riskier personal medical history (i.e., has diabetes, experiences symptoms) tend to purchase ampalaya supplements more than their corresponding opposites. A big majority of the respondents (63%)stated that they have not tried any form of ampalaya supplement because they are unsure of its effectiveness. Meanwhile, 59% reasoned out that their doctors do not prescribe ampalaya supplements to handle their diabetes. On average, the respondents strongly disagree that drinking ampalaya supplements can cure diabetes. They also disagree that ampalaya supplements are effective even in just preventing/controlling diabetes.

Ballesca, A. B. R. (2010). No approved therapeutic claims: The effect of ampalaya supplement television commercials on health behavior of diabetics/those at risk of diabetes, Unpublished Undergraduate Thesis, University of the Philippines Diliman College of Mass Communication.

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Subject Index: Dietary supplements, Diabetics, Television advertising, Advertisements, Herbals, Momordica Charantia