Fda Curbs Unfounded Memory Supplement Claims
I must have seen the commercial for Prevagen 50 times. Perhaps youve seen it, too: “You might take something for your heart your joints your digestion. So why wouldnt you take something for the most important part of you your brain? With an ingredient originally found in jellyfish! Healthier brain, better life!”
Like many heavily-advertised supplements, this one makes many claims. The bottle promises it “improves memory” and “supports: healthy brain function, sharper mind, clearer thinking.” Never mind that the main ingredient in jellyfish has no known role in human memory, or that many experts believe supplements like this would most likely be digested in the stomach and never wind up anywhere near the brain. Oh, and the commercial doesnt mention any risks of treatment or cost .
But does this supplement actually do what it says? If it doesnt, how can the manufacturer make these claims? And if apoaequorin is so great, why arent jellyfish smarter, as a colleague of mine wonders?
But Thats Not What The Companys Own Study Showed
According to the Federal Trade Commission , which charged Quincy Bioscience with false and deceptive advertising last January, the company study found that Prevagen was no more effective than a placebo at improving any of the nine cognitive skills, including memory, that the company measured.
So how can the company claim otherwise?
Because Quincy Bioscience went back and sliced and diced the results, performing more than 30 additional analyses of the data, and came up with three results that were statistically significant .
Its these three positive results that Quincy Bioscience touts as evidence that Prevagen is a breakthrough for helping with mild memory problems associated with aging.
Memory Loss Cause # 3 Fitness
When checked concerning their workout behaviors in 2016, just 12.7% of individuals over age 65 satisfied national exercise standards, which is 2 and also a half hrs of aerobic exercise a week. Unsurprisingly, according to recent studies, nearly 75% of those over age 65 are obese, or obese. Excessive weight is known to impact the brain in lots of ways, and also can have an extremely unfavorable influence on our memory as well as cognition..
Current study into the procedures behind obesity has provided us two crucial methods the brain and health and fitness connect. Brain-derived-neurotrophic-factor is formed primarily in the brain, and research studies show that consistent cardiovascular exercise increases manufacturing of BDNF, especially in those over age 65, providing a vast array of surprising advantages. In addition to our new knowledge concerning BDNF, we have new research right into the blood-brain barrier as well as its interactions with insulin, excessive weight, as well as mind wellness. There are solid ramifications that both BDNF as well as the blood-brain obstacle play a critical duty in our continued ability to keep in mind as we age, so it is a good suggestion to find out more concerning this new discovery.
How Do The Prevagen Products Compare To Other Nootropic Supplements
The Prevagen line is expensive and higher than most similar brain enhancement supplements. In terms of ingredients, most of the supplements only have 2 primary active substances, which is much less than other nootropic supplements on the market.
It seems to be missing some popular ingredients. However, the Prevagen reviews had mostly very good things to say about this product line.
Memory Loss Cause # 7 Thyroid Problems
According to current professional researches, hypothyroidism is present in concerning 5% of people over the age of 65, and also ladies are practically three times as likely to have thyroid problems. Hyperthyroidism is just as unsafe, both to rest and general health and wellness, and also research study reveals that 15% of individuals identified with an over active thyroid more than the age of 65.
Little is known about just how precisely thyroid conditions impact memory, but research study reveals a clear link in between memory loss and hypo as well as hyperthyroidism. Talk to your physician to discover out even more regarding your thyroid health and wellness and also if there is anything you can do to assist improve your memory.
Prevagen Reviews: What People Say About This Product
We found some reviews online.
Of 331 customer reviews online, 64 percent are giving it 5 stars and an overall rating of 4.2 out of 5 stars.
What did users say?
Lets start with some negative reviews.
Well, I have to say that my months supply of Prevagen is almost gone and I felt absolutely NOTHING! I was hoping to feel more alert along with maybe some improvement in memory, but I feel absolutely no difference. To me not worth the money.
One user says:
My husband started taking this about 3 weeks ago and let me say that he has never been so forgetful, so much worse than when he was taking nothing. He can barely remember things from the previous day. He really didnt have much of a problem before, just wanted a more focused mind. If you dont have severe memory problems, I would NOT recommend you wasting your money on this.
How about positive reviews?
Suzy S. reports:
I am writing this review for my grandma, who is taking the medication and is 72 years old. She says it really works! Before Prevagen, she would stop mid-sentence, as she forgot what she was talking about. She has been taking Prevagen for just a week and a half and has noticed a significant increase in her sharpness and memory. In the last two conversations, we had have proved that correct. She has not lost her thoughts and seems to be fully alert. Both she and I would recommend this to family and loved ones.
Cebria Vs Prevagen Similarities And Differences
When comparing Cebria Vs. Prevagen, it is clear that these two supplements have an identical purpose, i.e., to promote healthy brain performance but differ in their ingredient content. Both products boast high efficacy in improving brain health, memory, and overall wellness.
One striking difference, though, is their composition and vitamin complex included in their formula. Cebria is an herbal-based supplement and has a B vitamin complex, while Prevagen boasts a breakthrough formula with the key ingredient derived from a jellyfish. Since it is a rather new ingredient, it is natural to expect more studies that confirm its efficacy and make sure it is safe to use.
Regarding Cebria, the number of studies confirming its effect is relatively low. However, most of the ingredients in the formula have been widely used over the years, implying its safety and efficiency.
Memory Loss Cause # 10 Dementia
A noticeable explanation to worsening memory concerns, specifically the capability to remember recent events, names, and contact number, is Alzheimers disease and relevant dementias. While not all older adults deal with memory-related conditions, the risk of creating mental deterioration rises with age. New advancements in innovation have actually made it possible to discover Alzheimers illness in your physicians workplace with a simple eye examination, and there are lots of cognitive tests that can additionally be performed to aid determine the precise nature of your memory issues, so make certain to connect to your medical professional if you think your memory problems are becoming an issue for you..
Mind The Gap Between Graphics And Reality
As “proof” of power, a bar graph shows a rise from 5% to 10% to 20% over 90 days in “recall tasks.” But theres no way to know what these numbers refer to, how many people were studied, or other important details. And no information is provided about effects on memory after 90 days. The fine print under the graph says that the supplement “improved recall tasks in subjects” without explaining what this means. While a company-sponsored study reported improvements in memory after people took apoaequorin, the demonstrated minimal improvement 30157-2/fulltext” rel=”nofollow”>here).
The US Federal Trade Commission wasnt convinced of the supplements benefits. It charged the supplement maker with false advertising back in 2012. In the legal filings, the company was accused of selectively reporting data and misleading the public though claims that Prevagen is “clinically proven” to improve cognitive function. The lawsuit has not yet been decided.
Memory Enhancers That May Be Unsafe
Before adding any memory supplements to your diet, have a pharmacist check for potential interactions with any drugs or supplements you’re taking, advises Lausier.
“And, remember that ‘natural’ isn’t always safe,” she says. “When you think about nature, you often think of beautiful and harmless. But think about a lion and a wildebeest — that’s nature, too.”
- Bacopa. Used for millennia in India, bacopa is an Ayurvedic herb that shows some promise for memory problems, says Lausier. But it is an example of a memory supplement that carries a higher risk of drug interactions. For this reason, she doesn’t recommend using it until further study is conducted.
- . A hormone that declines with age, DHEA has garnered lots of interest. Taken long-term or in high doses, however, it may increase the risk for certain types of , as well as other serious side effects.
As you evaluate other potential memory supplements, keep in mind that the FDA does not strictly regulate herbs and supplements. It treats them like foods rather than medications. Unlike drug manufacturers, the makers of supplements donât have to show their products are safe or effective before selling them on the market.
This makes it harder for you to assess their strength, purity, and safety. Fugh-Berman advises doing your own research on effectiveness and adverse effects, using reliable, unbiased sources.
Memory Loss Cause #11 Anxiety
To some level, stress and anxiety can assist your memory, Legendre says. Both ends of the continuum also little stress and anxiety, or as well much can injure your memory. Contrary to what we might believe, not having sufficient stress and anxiety hormones can be as negative for your memory as having as well a lot, Legendre claims.
To limit exactly how anxiety influences your concentration as well as memory, Legendre suggests building mindfulness practices right into your day. Try reflection for a couple of mins every day. These practices aid you recognize the here and now minute and concentrate on what youre doing, she claims.
Are There Any Side Effects
The manufacturer says that Prevagen is safe to use.
However, the FDA received various reports on adverse side effects including seizures, worsening symptoms of multiple sclerosis, strokes, chest pain, heart arrhythmias, syncope, tremors, and vertigo.
We also found various side effects reported by users including
- Severe constipation
- Painful leg muscles
One customer wrote on Amazon:
After taking this product for about 30 days, I had a grand mal seizure, while driving. Ive never had a seizure or any neurological disorder before in my life. I am a fit healthy 50 yr old female. In doing research, I found that side effects found in test studies included seizures and strokes. Because this product is over-the-counter, the manufacturer does not have to report this information.
What Does Prevagen Do
The makers of Prevagen claim it helps improve signs of mild memory loss associated with aging. It is said to do this by regulating the amount of calcium in brain cells.
Calcium is a mineral that serves as a neurotransmitter. Neurotransmitters like calcium play a role in proper neuron function, communication, and signaling between brain cells.
However, no clinical studies in humans have been performed to assess whether supplementing with apoaequorin produces such results.
The safety and efficacy of apoaequorin have only been assessed in a single study conducted by the makers of Prevagen.
The study found that its well-tolerated, and taking it resulted in improvements in verbal learning, working memory, and memory recall compared to a placebo. However, this study was small and is subject to bias.
Any time a study is conducted directly by the manufacturing company and is not peer-reviewed, that is an immediate red flag.
This type of research, even if it is a gold standard randomized trial, is likely biased and may have skewed results in their favor.
The lack of unbiased research makes it impossible to know what amount, if any, of apoaequorin is beneficial for brain health.
All formulations of Prevagen also contain 50 mcg of vitamin D3 per serving, which is more than three times the Recommended Dietary Allowance for adults aged 1970 years and more than two times the RDA for adults 71 and up.
Memory Loss Cause # 5 Depression And Also Anxiety
Severe anxiety or grief can sometimes trigger lapse of memory and also amnesia, along with usually affecting your ability to focus. Sensations of despair, extreme sorrow at the loss of a liked one, as well as various other emotional injury can cause sensation out of touch, or in a fog and also failing to remember small details..
Stress and anxiety impacts between 3% and also 15% of older adults, according to Mental Health America, and current research studies reveal that 2.2% of seniors report serious emotional distress during the 30 days prior to the survey. Those aged 45-65 reported distress 4.4% of the moment, and likewise report a high degree of anxiety. There are lots of distressing signs and symptoms of stress and anxiety, consisting of:.
Chest pains.Dizziness.Worry of passing away.
There are many reasons an individual can become nervous, from family problems, life adjustments, money problems, and also health worries. Regardless of the factor behind your stress and anxiety, there are a selection of means you can handle your tough feelings in the house, as well as alternatives for when depression and anxiety end up being difficult to cope with:.
Our Pick: Choosing Between Prevagen And Focus Factor
Both supplements have come under fire for some of the claims theyve made regarding brain health.
The Federal Drug Administration and Federal Trade Commission have investigated and the makers of Prevagen for claims that violated what is permissible by law for a dietary supplement.
There have been no studies other than the one conducted by the makers of Prevagen to determine the safety and efficacy of apoaequorin.
There are also Consumer Report warnings on Focus Factor regarding the lack of evidence to support taking it.
If I were to choose one over the other, I would choose Prevagen. This is due to Focus Factors large number of ingredients and increased risk of mild to severe side effects.
However, since neither supplement formulation has been proven to be effective in high-quality studies, I would recommend focusing more on healthy lifestyle changes to improve brain health first and foremost.
As a Registered Dietitian, I would recommend practicing healthy lifestyle habits to improve your brain health and preserve your memory as long as possible.
Eating a Mediterranean-type diet, engaging in regular physical activity, and getting good quality sleep are all things you can do to improve your brain health without the potential side effects of a supplement.
One particular type of diet, termed the MIND diet, has been shown to be particularly effective in delaying cognitive decline.
Always check with a doctor before starting a new supplement to determine whats best for you.
Prevagen: Packages Pricing And Where To Buy
Each bottle of Prevagen contains 30 capsules.
How much does Prevagen cost?
- Prevagen Extra Strength : $109.95
- Prevagen Extra Strength : $59.95
- Prevagen Chewables : $39.95
- Prevagen Regular Strength : $39.95
Prevagen is available on the official website www.prevagen.com and at local and online retail stores including Walmart, Walgreens, CVS, Kroger, Lucky Vitamin, Rite Aid, and Vitacost among others.
Prevagen: How Can This Memory Supplement Flunk Its One Trial And Still Be Advertised As Effective
Savvy Supplement Shopper is a blog by CSPI senior staff scientist David Schardt. This blog aims to parse the good from the bad from the truly awful in the supplement aisle.
If you watch TV, youve probably seen an ad for the dietary supplement Prevagen. Thats the jellyfish protein that supposedly improves your memory. Consumers have spent more than $165 million on it over the past 10 years.
What did they get for all that money? Maybe not very much.
Quincy Bioscience, the Wisconsin company that manufactures it, claims that Prevagen has been clinically proven to improve memory.
Memory Loss Does Not Mean Dementia Or Alzheimers Are In Your Future
In the summer of 1994, I lived in Woodridge, Illinois, about 25 miles west of Chicago.
One day, there was a message on my answering machine. It was from a woman who lived next door to my mother in Pennsylvania. The neighbor said my mother was in the hospital and her doctor wanted me to call him.
I called immediately. Her doctor told me my mom had some small strokes on blood vessels in her brain. She was a little confused and they had to hospitalize her. He didnt think she would be able to live by herself any more.
That Was How I First Learned My Mother Had Dementia
Thinking about it afterwards, her dementia probably started one or two years earlier. It didnt reach the point to where it became noticeable until 1994.
My mother was 78 years old at the time. As time passed, her dementia got worse. Eventually she reached the point where she did not recognize or know me. The quality of her life diminished. She died 13 years later when she was 91.
Would I Develop Dementia When I Got Older?
Ever since then, I have wondered if I would develop dementia myself. Initially, I didnt think about it much but as I got older, it became more frequent.
Occasionally, I had difficulty remembering a persons name or being able to find my cell phone. On rare occasions, I forgot to pay a bill. Throughout my life, I always had a very good memory. Whenever any of these things happened, they rocked me.
Of course, I am kidding when I say that.
Various Things Cause Memory Loss
Here are some.
Supplement Claims Sound Good So Why The Disclaimers
Although there are many thousands of supplements and hundreds of conditions for which theyre intended, its often hard to say if theyre doing much of anything. For example, glucosamine has been promoted for many years as “good for joint health.” I have patients who swear by it. But the best studies suggest modest effects, if any. When it comes to “heart healthy” vitamins, consider the example of vitamin E, once considered potentially useful to prevent or treat heart disease. Yet, study after study showed no benefit. In fact, it may increase the risk of heart failure. As for probiotic supplements, there is no convincing evidence that their use improves digestive health or prevents digestive disease in healthy people.
Rather than focus on the benefits touted, it may make more sense to read the standard disclaimer required on supplements: “These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA.”
Can Cebria And Prevagen Slow Down Age
While there is no official FDA confirmation that nootropic supplements work on preventing or treating mental functions and brain health, numerous studies confirm the effect of the ingredients used in their formulas.
Regarding Cebria, the ashwagandha extract has long been known to improve memory and concentration and combined with the vitamin complex; it can have a beneficial effect on the brain and the body.
Prevagen has been tested multiple times, and its effect has been measured to a certain degree. Thousands of users have reviewed it as helpful and very efficient. Yet, it is not FDA reviewed or approved, and it is not considered a drug that prevents or treats underlying aging issues.
Whats The Story On Prevagen
This supplement is derived from a protein found in jellyfish. One television commercial states:
The breakthrough in Prevagen helps your brain, allowing you to stay as sharp as possiblePowered by an ingredient originally discovered in jellyfish, Prevagen is clinically shown to improve short term memory. Prevagen, a name to remember.
Another commercial states:
The protein originally found in a jellyfish improve your memory? Our scientists say yes. Researchers have discovered a protein that actually supports healthier brain function. Its the breakthrough in a supplement called Prevagen. As we age, we lose proteins that support our brain. Prevagen supplements these proteins and has been clinically shown to improve memory. Its safe and effective. For support of healthier brain function, a sharper mind and clearer thinking, try Prevagen today.
Can Prevagen Be Harmful
Generally speaking, Prevagen is a safe product which only leads to mild potential Prevagen side effects, There have been a very small number of heart and nervous system issues with apoaequorin, but this is extremely rare .
If you have allergies, its important to check the Prevagen ingredients list carefully to make sure the product is suitable for you.
What Does Focus Factor Do
The makers of Focus Factor claim that its clinically tested formula improves memory and increases concentration and focus.
Focus Factor contains a large number of ingredients, vitamins, and minerals. However, the manufacturer does not pinpoint which ingredients, in particular, are responsible for the claimed benefits or how.
It does contain the ingredients DHA, choline, and GABA, which may play a role in brain health.
However, the amounts in this supplement are likely much lower than what has been shown in the research to be effective.
A randomized clinical trial was conducted comparing the effectiveness of Focus Factor compared to a placebo in adult men and women.
The company behind Focus Factor, called Factor Nutrition Labs, hired an independent research team to conduct this study.
However, this study did not undergo a peer-review process, nor was it published in a peer-reviewed medical journal. This puts the quality of this study under question.
After 6 weeks, Focus Factor was reported to increase memory recall by 44% and was beneficial for focus and concentration.
This was the only study directly conducted on Focus Factor. However, this study is small in size and is likely biased.
Memory Loss Cause # 2 Over
Self-medicating with alcohol, cigarettes, and also other compounds can influence our memory. While it is important to take your medications as prescribed, using a number of drugs in a day is called polypharmacology, and also additionally makes complex health problems in addition to the danger of overmedicating. Every included drug better makes complex a potentially toxic mixed drink, especially if you likewise consume alcohol. The most typical medications to be recommended as one ages previous 65 are hypertension medicine, heart tablets, and anti-diabetics. The National Institute of Health has a guide for risk-free medicine use for seniors, and also advise the adhering to checklist of inquiries to ask your doctor whenever you are recommended something new:.
Why am I taking this drug?What specific times do I need to take it?Do I require to eat or consume alcohol when taking this?How much time can I expect this medicine to start functioning?Will this communicate with any of my various other medications?Can I drive when I take this?What does as required imply?What should I do if I forget a dosage?What negative effects can I expect?Will I have the ability to take my typical vitamins with this medicine?
Best Ways To Help Your Memory
For young and older people alike, its valuable to get your dietary vitamins from the food you eat. Supplements can fill in the gaps, but check with your doctor before you go over the recommended daily intake.
No matter your age, the best way to combat memory decline is to eat well and exercise your body and your brain. The Mediterranean diet is a good source of all the vitamins your body needs.
The Mediterranean diet has been as a way to improve memory. The hallmarks of the diet include:
- mostly plant-based foods
- limiting red meat
- eating fish
- using liberal amounts of olive oil to prepare meals
The MIND diet, in particular, emphasizes the consumption of green, leafy vegetables and plant-based food in addition to the high protein and olive oil recommendations of the Mediterranean diet.
Having a strong support network and being engaged in your local community have been suggested as ways to delay or prevent dementia. Establishing healthy sleep habits can also protect your brain.