Christi Baus suggested I take a look at here website about Protandim at Christ Baus. I think she expected it to be a compelling reason to buy the product, but it turns out that there is a lot of misleading information there - some of it seems like outright lies. In case here website has changed, you can see a screenshot of it here.
Let's go into a few of the problems that I found on the site.
Myth: Trump, Kiyosaki, and Buffett support Network Marketing
For one you say that Trump, Kiyosaki, and Buffett support Network Marketing (i.e. the name that MLMers use for MLM because it sounds better, Robert Kiyosaki, Rich Dad, Poor Dad, MLMs, and MonaVie
Christi also suggests that people "Get the facts as featured in Wall Street Journal." This is misleading as the link is to an advertisement by the Direct Selling Association that is a lobbyist group for MLM. It is nothing more than informercial in print. It clearly doesn't represent the opinions of any WSJ editors.
Christi Baus' distorted view on illegal pyramid schemes
She had some interesting points about illegal pyramid schemes:
"You must be able to join the business without having to purchase any products what so ever. You can join LifeVantage for only $50."
That $50 option (the starter kit) says that "Note: When ordering a Starter Kit, you must also place an initial product order of 100 PV or more in order to qualify for commissions."
In other words you can not join the business (qualify for commissions) without purchasing product. Also, while it is not stated here, you must continue to purchase product or you will lose the ability to qualify for commissions (i.e. be in the business).
Cristi also said about legit opportunities vs. illegal pyramid schemes,
"You can only be paid when product is purchased by a downline distributor or your own customers."
I did not see this in anything the FTC has written. In fact, the FTC has shut down pyramid schemes when this is the case (JewelWay for example). The FTC wouldn't care if people were paid a bonus of $10,000 for making no sales to any distributors or customers. Of course, businesses don't typically give away $10,000, so this point is never tested, but it is irrelevant.
The third claim Christi makes about MLMs and illegal pyramid schemes is:
"You can not be paid for enrolling people into the business."
This is true, but it extends to further than that. The quote from the FTC is:
"Another sign of a pyramid scheme is if the money you make depends more on recruiting — getting new distributors to pay for the right to participate in the plan — than on sales to the public."
So if the money one makes from one's downline is greater than the amount of product that one makes from sales of the product oneself, it is likely a pyramid scheme.
As it was earlier established, to be in the business one must buy product and thus if one is paid based on that person's initial purchase, one is being paid for enrolling people in the business. The two are interlinked and are one in the same.
Protandim and Pharmaceutical Companies
Christi makes the point that pharmaceutical companies are trying to do what Protandim already does. Ask yourself that if Protandim actually worked, why wouldn't they just buy LifeVantage - it's a publicly traded company penny stock company. It doesn't make sense until you realize that Protandim actually creates free radicals: Cheap Curcumin in Protandim Activates Nrf2 by Stimulating Free Radical Production.
Perhaps the pharmaceutical companies are trying to activate Nrf2 without creating free radicals.
Christi Baus makes the claim of:
"Did you know that the specific combination of herbs, the exact ratio of each one is the reason it works, 1800% more effective than the sum of the parts."
What Christi doesn't mention is that this statement has no scientific proof to it. There is no untainted, unfudged data that Protandim does anything for humans to begin with. There's no data that the exact ratio plays any part. It is worth mentioning that it is illogical as this is not the case with any other natural product. We don't suggest that there's a magic ratio that cake becomes extra healthy.
Christi Baus' "Who to BELIEVE?" section
The first quote that is interesting is:
"Look at the studies that are being released by Harvard, Ohio State U, LSU and the American Heart Association. Go to Pubmed.gov and search for Protandim, all the studies will pop up."
I've been to Pubmed.gov and none of these organizations have released any studies that support Protandim. In the case of Harvard, Ohio State U, and LSU none of these schools endorse Protandim in any way. Go ahead and search Harvard's website for Protandim - there's nothing there. For more about the "Harvard" lie: read: LifeVantage Lies to SEC, Investors, Consumers about “Harvard” Study.
The truth about these schools is that they have one person who may or may not have been paid by LifeVantage to conduct a test and publish a paper. In almost every case LifeVantage's Joe McCord was involved in the study making it anything but biased.
As for the American Heart Association, they published a paper "Chronic Pulmonary Artery Pressure Elevation Is Insufficient to Explain Right Heart Failure", which if you read the conclusion had absolutely nothing to do with Protandim.
Christi didn't have much to offer on her website that wasn't already addressed here. Though it is clear that she's trying to throw out big names such as Harvard, Wall Street Journal, Warren Buffett, and Donald Trump to make it seem like they support Protandim. However, just like LifeVantage itself, when you dig a little deeper you find that none of these people or organizations support LifeVantage or Protandim, nor do they stand by the product doing anything at all for the consumer.
Originally posted 2011-12-16 20:06:46.
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