Are you stupid enough to take Shark Cartilage pills?
Roaming around Ayala Mall in Cebu City I stumbled upon these - shark cartilage capsules. Obviously I was hugely disappointed to find shark products being sold in a health store here in the Philippines, but what I discovered next was worse! The product and marketing of the capsules is based on complete nonsense (to put it politely), and so I have to ask the question who is stupid enough to take shark cartilage capsules?
Let’s look at this statement quoted on the back of “Solgar” Shark Cartilage Capsules and you’ll see what I am talking about:
“The use of shark cartilage pills as a dietary supplement is the result of scientists indicating that sharks have existed for hundreds of millions of years, yet are one of the few animals that have remained relatively unchanged by evolution.”
Really?!!? Is “Solgar” trying to use evolution as a scientific endorsement? And what exactly is the customer gaining by taking capsules of one of the worlds most overexploited species? I’m sorry, but if you are silly enough to believe this ridiculous statement then the joke is on you - you are wasting your money and simultaneously killing sharks, probably endangered species. It’s time you made a change, but first let me tell you why this product is so ridiculous,
Let’s look at that statement again: “The use of shark cartilage pills as a dietary supplement is the result of scientists indicating that sharks have existed for hundreds of millions of years”
a) OK so ye, sharks are pretty old, in fact Sharks have swum in the oceans for almost 450 million years, but why does that mean it is good to eat their cartilage? It doesn’t - there’s no basis to this and ironically the fact that sharks have survived 450 million years should be good enough reason why we SHOULD NOT BE EATING THEIR CARTILAGE - the demand for products like this, as well as shark fins and shark oil is one of the GREATEST THREATS to shark species around the world. By not buying or supporting these products, you can be part of the movement to save the worlds greatest ocean animals and not be one of the people responsible for their extinction.
b) “yet are one of the few animals that have remained relatively unchanged by evolution” - The fact that sharks have remained relatively unchanged by evolution, is helping us how? By taking shark cartilage am I going to be relatively unchanged by evolution? I think not. Evolution takes hundreds, if not millions of years and consists of changes in the traits inherited by a population of organisms as successive generations replace one another. It is populations of organisms that evolve, not individual organisms. By taking shark cartilage you are not gaining anything, especially in evolutionary terms! According to our main man Charles Darwin, evolution by natural selection is all about survival of the fittest - individuals with traits that enable them to better adapt to their environment compared with other members of the same species will more likely survive and go on to reproduce. So if sharks have been “relatively unchanged by evolution” then maybe they nailed it way back when - the ancestors of todays sharks must have adapted well to their environment compared with other members of their species, reproduced, had baby sharks, like their parents these babies were well adapted, survived, reproduced, etc etc… I can see no way how this statement on the product and the capsule itself is going to benefit the user I don’t even understand what the product is selling?! Everything is unrelated and complete nonsense.
c) The suggested dose is 8 capsules a day!! 8 capsules a day!?! The only reason I can think of for this that you have to take so many capsules because they do in fact do nothing. Taking more, simply means you need to buy a new bottle quicker, killing more sharks for no reason. It’s just crazy.
So there you go. Now when asked the question are you silly enough to be taking shark cartilage capsules?
The answer is NO.