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Neuriva Brain Supplement Is Not “Proven”

Remember this commercial for Neuriva, a recently introduced brain supplement?

The claims in it that Neuriva has “clinically proven ingredients that fuel five indicators of brain performance” became part of a class action lawsuit against the company. The complaint asserted that Reckitt Benckiser, the maker of Neuriva, lacked scientific proof that the product really improves brain functioning.

A review of the relevant scientific literature shows that no valid scientific or clinical evidence exists regarding how much, if any, of Neuriva’s key ingredients reaches the brain. Because of this lack of evidence, Defendants’ claims that Neuriva’s ingredients are scientifically and clinically proven to benefit the brain or enhance brain performance are patently false, as well as are Defendants’ claims that Neuriva has been scientifically proven to be effective. Indeed, no publicly available study of Neuriva exists, and Plaintiffs have found no indication that Neuriva’s efficacy has ever been studied or tested.

The company denied the charges but nonetheless subsequently entered into a proposed settlement agreement which calls for full or partial refunds to consumers and a change in the claims the company makes on the packaging and in advertising. [Purchasers can file a claim here, although the settlement is not finalized yet.]


Neuriva old and new

Put simply, the company agreed to change the word “proven” to “tested” along with other minor wording changes, but only for a period of two years. Frankly, whether it says “clinically proven” or “clinically tested” I think most consumers will still come away with the same net impression that there is reliable scientific evidence backing up the brain performance claims. The proposed settlement has also come under fire from other consumer advocates and court watchers.

The product’s TV advertising has changed already. They now have Miyam Bialik, the actress best known for her roles on Blossom and The Big Bang Theory, and as the future host of Jeopardy!, vouching for the product. What qualifies her for this role? She got her doctorate in neuroscience. Now the company uses that fact to also claim that the product is “neuroscientist approved.”

One thing that hasn’t changed is a disclaimer on the side of the Neuriva package.


Neuriva disclaimer

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6 thoughts on “Neuriva Brain Supplement Is Not “Proven””

  1. Thank you for posting this. When I first saw the new commercial with Bialik shameless leveraging her celebrity and degree to shill for this useless product I got sick to my stomach. What a sad person she is and certainly unworthy of the job as Jeopardy host, among other things. She now ranks up there with ICE-T and Chris Berman hawking worthless ripoff car warranties and Tom Selleck and his Reverse Mortgages as the 3 worst zero intetegrity celebrity offenders.

  2. Neuriva comes from the same company that now owns Airborne, a supplement whose early extravagant claims included that it would cure or prevent colds and other illnesses (based on a “study” by a company that had no actual scientists or doctors). The former owner was fined by the Federal Trade Commission for deceptive advertising and was the subject of successful class action suits.

    As with Neuriva, the claims for Airborne were severely toned down though the product continues to be advertised.

    Neuriva contains two ingredients (along with some B vitamins) which have been around health food stores for awhile. One, coffee cherry extract, was shown to increase brain neurotrophic factor, but in a single-dose study that had no control group.

    The other ingredient, phosphatidylserine, has been studied with both weakly positive and negative results. In other words, nothing impressive.

    A study including a combination of the two ingredients has not been reported in any refereed medical journal I am familiar with.

    Of course, the revised Neuriva claim is essentially meaningless. It’s been tested. So? Plenty of drugs have been tested–and found not to work. And the TV ads with Miyam Bialik rely on the supplement industry’s favorite weasel word, “supports”, as in “supports brain health.” Yeah, so does sugar.

    Meanwhile, Neuriva joins a growing group of purported nootropics (brain supplements) whose initial advertising made flamboyant claims that were not supported and whose current, more modest ads (often just personal testimonies) continue to bask in the memory of those previous commercials.

  3. I tried one bottle, saw nothing beneficial in my memory or recall so didn’t buy anymore at the astronomical price they charge. So I will be filing the claim.
    I can say that I use “focus factor” which is mainly B Vitamins, at about $14 a bottle from Costco. And do notice that I either dream more, or remember those dreams, so it must have some effect on my brain and I have stuck with it.

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