Duchess of York criticised for blender promotion
Sarah, Duchess of York has been criticised for linking Imperial College London to a questionable diet plan.
The 55-year-old royal is currently on a promotional tour of the US where she is endorsing a £65 ($100) blender – the Fusion Xcelerator – which she has associated with her work as an ambassador for the university.
Speaking on NBC’s ‘Today’ show, she said: “I have just found out on my discoveries with Imperial College London… I’m an ambassador for the Institute for Global Health Innovation, and I found out that children, little children, are going to die before their parents because of obesity.”
The duchess – also known by her maiden name Sarah Ferguson – went on to describe the device as “a solution for behavioural change,” claiming to have lost 55lbs from using the emulsifier.
However, the prestigious scientific institution has now clarified her comments, explaining they do not endorse the Fusion Xcelerator and have no link to the product.
A spokesman told MailOnline: “Sarah Ferguson holds an unpaid role as an ambassador for Imperial’s Institute of Global Health Innovation. The role is to raise the profile of the Institute and its impact.
“The commercial activities promoted by Sarah Ferguson in the interview with Today are not connected in any way to Imperial’s staff or research activities, and the College does not endorse the suggestion of any possible link.”
Scientists have also questioned the legitimacy of the device – which comes with a diet plan and fitness DVD – saying it has no distinguishing features from a regular blender.
Ayela Spiro from the British Nutrition Foundation said: “In terms of the particular product, no juicer or blender on their own can enhance how much nutrition your body will absorb. Any claims made about such products such that it accelerates weight loss, boosts energy and strengthens the immune system need to be treated with caution.”
The duchess’ spokesman told The Times newspaper: “She is not trying to use her association with the institute to promote her personal interests. She was talking about ‘behavioural change’, which is endorsed by the institute, and her own behavioural change.”