Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Reliv: Miracle cure, or scam?

I found the following article on another blog. It caught my attention as first of all, it has part of one of my comments to one of our posters. But also it has some interesting points about Reliv. Please take the time to read through this.

Reliv: Miracle cure, or scam?
Let me ask you a question...

If someone told you that your cancer could be cured, your achy bones could finally withstand the winter, your acne could be demolished, your wrinkles could be tightened without botox, or that every health problem you had, could be cured by drinking a shake; would you believe it?

In my opinion, I think the majority of the human race would like to believe in such a miracle cure.

And is it impossible? No...there are truly miracle products out there, such as Blue Green Algae, or its refined cousin StemEnhance. But; the truth is Americans don't have the time, patience, or necessary knowledge to do their own research.

Americans are ripe fruits waiting to be picked by all the greedy scammers waiting right there, in the light; with pictures of healthy faces and "authentic testimonies". The pages are covered with comforting words about how "simplicity and convenience are all you need in a supplement". And yet; there are no ingredients listed on the page, no information on the product besides an information request form. But innocent people are being scammed out of their money, these are working-class Americans who can't afford the medical treatment they need; they believe they have nothing to lose by spending $61 dollars on a supplement, because they are desperate for an
answer. These companies know your weaknesses; they see a simple idea, and hopeful Americans wanting only to live a healthy life. They don't care about anyone but themselves, and their pocketbook.

I recently met a woman, at a temp job I am working, who is a seller for a product called "Reliv".

I knew from the instant she told me about it, that at 61.00 dollars this product was a scam.

She told me it cured her turrets, her migraines, and the health problems of her family members, and other people she knows through her "distributor network".

When I proceeded to ask her how it was processed, and what the ingredients were, she told me; "I'm not a scientist, I just know it works" and "Its been developed by scientists"

Anyone can be a scientist, if they have a brain and an education.

I went home and did my own research, I knew she expected me to be sold on her miracle cure, after her flagrant lies about how she had known of customers who have had their Grave's Disease cured(which I mentioned I had, before she said anything). She is an actress; literally, a broadway actress. I'm smart enough to know when someone is trying to play me, and I damn well won't take anything that doesn't have an ingredients list.

The bottom line, after searching through several dead end pages, its a protein shake made of soy, with a combination of vitamins, and herbs. All available at a very discounted price when buying in bulk from an herbal store, or online from a vitamin supplier such as NOW.

The grand total is 61.00 for the shake, but its other product lines include; a weight lost miracle cure, an acne treatment, etc etc.

These companies are giving supplements a bad name. We are in a constant war against the AMA, and the government, just to keep our natural supplements, and companies like this are the very evil giving us a bad name.

The dangers of soy are also very prevalent if one does enough research, it is a cheap mass produced grain, that a large portion of the populace is allergic to. How safe can a supplement without its ingredient listed be?

I encourage you to do your own research, before wasting money. It takes a couple minutes out of your day, as opposed to several days of labor lost to a "miracle cure". Can your family or you really afford to guess at the benefits of a mystery miracle product?

Reliv is Creating Conflict of Interests - Reliv is a dirty MLM and active member of the BIG PHARMA disinformation group known as CRN; "Council for Responsible Nutrition" the dirty liars who work with the WTO, CAFTA, WHO and the FDA to bring CODEX into law in 2010;

Watch these 2 videos:

"Nutricide - Criminalizing Natural Health, Vitamins, and Herbs"

"We Become Silent - The Last Days Of Health Freedom"

I am so thankful that people like this are willing to share the negative experiences they had with Reliv International.

"I was recently put on Reliv by my medical Doctor. He said it was natural and that the percentages of nutrient value was 100% unlike pill supplements. I was to drink this 3 times a day and see him in six weeks. He said they would follow up with me during that time. He put me on three products; Original, Innergize and Fibrestore and I was to stop all the supplements I
had been taking. I found that I was tired all the time and my eyes were itchy and burning. I have never done well on any soy products and this product is soy-based. I only could do the Reliv for a week and had to stop to see if the Reliv was the problem. I went to a person who does muscle
testing and she found these products were not a good thing for me. Once off the product, I felt better and was taking my original supplements. Still, since I had spent so much money for them I decided to give it another try. Same thing... just didn't feel very good when on this product. Today the doctor's wife called me. She is the one who stays in contact with the people who are put on this. I had already deduced this was a MLM company from the literature he gave me. She told me to go back on the products and cut down the amount of powder I use from one scoop to 1 teaspoon per serving. She also told me she would call me several times during the first month and have me listen in on other people's testimonies of what the product did for them and also to the 'business' information. I told her I would not be interested in being a distributor, she said that was okay but it was at the end of each testimonial. I am rather upset about this. I don't and won't listen to these testimonials. I am not going to take anymore of this product. I am disappointed in my doctor for doing this. He's a very nice doctor and he follows a more natural practice instead of prescribing drugs. But, now I may have to change doctors to avoid the uncomfortable situation that has arisen from this product and how it affects me."

I think it's absolutely WRONG for a Medical Doctor to be prescribing any natural products to his patients. This is a conflict of interest because Doctors aren't supposed to be in business to get you well, but to bandaide the symptoms to keep you coming back again and again spending money.
Otherwise, hospitals would be out of business.

And sadly this doctor has either been misled himself or is outright lying to you. Reliv is not a Natural product. If you take a moment to look at the ingredients from any one of them products, most of the items listed are chemicals.

I am not sure how long ago you purchased these products but Reliv does offer a 100% money back guarantee and so if it hasn't been more than a month you could ask for your money back.

I DO NOT sell any vitamins and I will never be involved in any MLM again. But if you want to check for yourself, here are a few natural products.

Dr. Organics - www.puredrorganics.com

Lifeforce - http://lifeforce.net/

Eniva Vibe - www.EnivaMembers.com/Income

Also a few other products I have heard about is, Purity Products and also Dr Mercola. If go to their websites they have some vitamins as well.

Reliv.com (Reliv International) RELV should be put out of business now, not just when FDA/CODEX makes all vitamins illegal in the USA and Reliv should also stop telling people to flood their body with its chemical soy toxins and doing it under the guise of being an "Honest Home Based Business."

Sadly, Reliv it is full of greedy, cheating, lying, self-serving manipulators and money grubbing back stabbers who ultimately mislead you into working a bastardized "success system" with a mentor who wants anything but your success. Sadly, Reliv's top distributors want to maintain their own success above and beyond yours and they do it off the backs of those they convince to join below them. The following Reliv products; Reliv Innergize, Reliv Now, Fiberstore, Provantage, Arthaffect, Soy Sentials, ReverseAge, Slimplicity, Kid's Now and Ultrim Plus (which is pure partially hydroginated non-dairy creamer) may not only hurt your health, Reliv products will certainly hurt your wallet and make you lose all your friends fast.

Get this, Reliv has thier head so far up the FDA's ass, they don't even let customers buy products online! Nope, they force you to deal in person with desperate and annoying Reliv Sales Reps who always try to coerce you into joining their stupid MLM, promising you'll "get rich" peddling their worthless, crappy tasting powder in a can.

Thankfully, Reliv is a has-been and fading fast from the public eye.

Here's a great article for you Reliv lovers who think the Council for Irresponsible Nutrition is a good thing:

FDA Announces Plan to Eliminate All Vitamin Companies:


Anonymous said...

Thanks for getting the truth out!! Almost 5 years ago I used Reliv, it was suppose to be safe enough for babies. Well menapause sent me down the Reliv path. I started using Soysentials twice a day, at first I thought my hot flashes were subsiding along with some other typical menapause symptoms, but as I continued using the product I slowly started noticing negative changes. My destributor told me to increase the soysentials so stupidly I did. Needless to say I ended up with full blown osteoperosis, Hashimotos thyroid, blood clotting issues, etc. etc. The loss of bone happened so rapidly that my dentist noticed it in my yearly check up. He said that my jaw bone had shrunk considerably,he was very concerned. I told him I had been using a soy product by Reliv and he said he was using soy and had noticed serious hair loss. He is no longer using soy either. I also met a lady who had been doing Reliv's Soysentials and she too had almost exactly the same problems. Please keep spreading the news, I have waited 5 years to hear someone speak out against Reliv. Thank you so much for this site. R.D

The_Reliv_Watchdog said...

Hello Poster - Thank you so much for taking the time to send us your experience. It is so sad that so many people are unwilling to accept the dangers of soy. I hope a few who read your post will at least spend some time thinking and maybe it will save them from the same fate.

Anonymous said...

I also used Reliv....and I also have Hashimoto's since using the products. I am told to stay away from soy now. WHY are SO MANY companies using soy in their products? Also iodine is not good for people that have Hashimoto's. It is hard to find good supplements with out those two things in them. I worry about all of the soy consumption. Who to believe??? Thanks, J

The_Reliv_Watchdog said...

Hello Poster - Thank you for taking the time to read my blog and thank you for taking the time to learn the truth.

Honestly I am not sure why so many products today have Soy in them. On one side I would GUESS that soy is a cheap filler and so it allows companies to save money. I worked in Lithuania for a while and a good friend of mine had a soy processing company there. The main buyers for their soy meat (TVP) was meat processors. They added the soy to the meat to extend it.

But on the other side, many companies like Reliv use Soy as they have bought into the lie that the soy industry has spent millions on. There has been a battle raging for many years now trying to prove that "soy is good for you". And if you buy products such as Soy Milk or Soy Meats it will say how good for your heart it is. And the Soy industry even has the FDA saying that Soy is "good for you". But what we aren't told is, groups are now lobbing the FDA to change their ruling on Soy as it's not healthy.

Here are some more products for you to look into. They don't contain soy but I am not sure about the iodine.

Life Force
Dr. Organics
Dr. Mercola Vitamins
Eniva Vibe
Purity Products
All One

Thank you again and I hope you can undo the damage done by Reliv and Soy.

Sofia said...

I noticed a few innacuracies in your article and as a journalist feel irritated by your less than factual reporting. If you're putting information out there you are responcible for millions of people reading what you're saying. This is not just innocent blogging. I am not selling Reliv but I have tried it and never felt happier or stronger. How can you not benefit from something that's just herbs and vitamins? Soy Sential you all are talking about is for menopause, and you're supposed to consult your doctor first. You should have tried the product before spreading scam conspiracies about something that has been helping millions of people feel healthy and support their families with an aditional income. P.S. There is an ingridient panel on the back of each product if you did your research u would have known that. I have a feeling this is written by someone who is interested in selling chemo.

The_Reliv_Watchdog said...

Hello Sofia!

Thank you for taking the time to read my blog and I do hope that you have read more than just a few articles. But I am assuming that you haven't as by now you would have found the articles where I have said more than ONCE that I rarely write the information posted on my blog. Most of the info comes from scientific studies, university research, other MLM Watchdogs, and people's personal experiences. I am not sure what inaccuracy you are referring to but I wonder if it's not just how you perceive information being a presented.

Honestly I don't understand why you care about Reliv since you have already stated that you don't sell it nor did you experience any results from the products. Since you felt no changes after taking Reliv you should be the first person to stand up and tell people to stop wasting so much money on a product that isn't working. Why spent 40, 100, or even 200+ dollars a month on a product that doesn't make any difference in your life? Why not just take a simple vitamin and donate the rest of the money you would have wasted to some cause like feeding children in Africa???

Honestly I am shocked that you are a journalist, as I can see, you know almost nothing about Reliv or the facts involved. But then maybe it is because of people like you, presenting false information that have corrupted our Newspapers and News Reports. Reliv is NOT just vitamins and Herbs. First and foremost it's very high in soy, which if you have read any of my articles would know already is deadly. Secondly Reliv uses very little natural products in their formulas. Most of their ingredients are chemicals or synthetically made. I can't believe for one minute that this is safe! There are too many other products that I have suggested taking that are 100% natural and don't contain soy.

I am so thankful that you made it CLEAR that Reliv SoySentials should ONLY be taken after consulting with your Doctor first. I sold Reliv for 2 years, I have attended many Reliv meetings and NEVER did I hear them say this. But I agree 100% with this statement. Please DON'T take Reliv without consulting with your doctor first. (Assuming he is not a distributor.)

And as I stated above, I have used the products myself, I know people that have used the products. I have seen both positive and negative results from the products. One person that I know of died as an indirect result of using Reliv. She did consult with her Doctor and was told to STOP using anything with Soy in it. This lady then went and told her Distributor (Who was one of Reliv Bronze Ambassadors) what the doctor had said and the distributor told her that the doctors don't know anything, Reliv will cure her cancer, and that she should take larger amounts. Sadly she listened and soon the cancer had spread through her whole body and she died a few months later. Her dying words were, she wished she could sue Reliv. Reliv IS NOT helping Millions of people. Reliv is helping some, some have no results, and some are hurt by the products. And you mentioned money, more than 99% of distirbutors fail after joining and so honestly Reliv isn't a good choice for making money.

This is why I have created this blog is to give people, honest seekers, a chance to read the negative side for themselves so that they can make an honest decision before taking the Reliv products.

Thank you again for reading my blog and I hope that you become an honest seeker and will spend more time looking at the facts before you make judgments.

greenmomma2 said...

Thank You for this. My youngest son has a soy allergy and people who sell reliv keep telling me it will cure his sensory issues and that I need not worry about the soy because its whole soy unprocessed and that people aren't truly allergic to soy but what its processed with. Needless to say I keep telling them no its too dangerous its not worth the risking his life to "cure" his sensory problems. I'm happy that a came accross this post it helped me feel better about my decision

The_Reliv_Watchdog said...

Hello Poster - Thank you for taking the time to read my blog and I am glad that I could help. Sadly Reliv Distributors think that Reliv is the cure-all and it does not matter what's wrong with you. Thankfully there are people like you that don't just accept it as fact but take the time to look deeper.

There are many other products on the market that are like Reliv and I would suggest if you looking for a good multivitamin you check into something that 100% natural and does not contain any soy or chemicals.

Anonymous said...

The first article on this page is nothing more than a rant by a person who wanted to dig up bad information. It is the equivalent of hearsay. It is not a testimony of what the products did for him/her. If you put your mind to it you can find good news or bad about anything you want; politicians, universities, restaurants, automobiles, books, movies, and on and on. Most things in life will never exceed what you make of them.

I used to be a Reliv distributor. The company is not perfect. But, then no company is. I got out of the company for my own reasons. However, the products are amazing. I first went to a Reliv Tuesday night opportunity meeting some 5 years ago. I sat next to my wife and listened. Near the end of the presentation my wife said to me: “you can do this; you can talk”. I whispered back to her: “They are hiding something; we are not hearing all the truth”. Well, I agreed because it was a friend. I began taking the basic nutrition, which is Classic and Innergize plus a product called Fibrestore.

I was amazed at what my body transformed into. Oh, it probably doesn’t look much more impressive from the outside. J.C. Penny isn’t looking to have me model underwear! The first thing that happed to me was I noticed a steady clear energy. It wasn’t a hyper thing, I just felt perked up; perhaps a little brighter. After about a months use, I also noticed that a condition that I was having trouble living with – dry eyes was without notice no longer bothering me. I am an infrequent exercise wanna be, I did some piddle running hear and there. After using these products for about 2 months, I noticed that I didn’t have problems with muscle soreness as before. My muscles responded to work or exercise with almost no muscle pain. That too was refreshing. I also noticed that achy knees weren’t bothering me as much as they used to. I have almost no sinus problems with Reliv. Without it, I could have 1 to 4 hour sneezing fits in the morning; perhaps a couple times a week. Using Reliv I can work harder longer. I also sleep better.

After 6 months of whining about MLM’s and what a joke that the business was, I joined. I bought in for the price break of getting a pile of product. After that my wife and I worked the business real hard for about 2 years. It didn’t take us where we thought it would. Perhaps I just don’t have the business savvy for being a Reliv distributor. I don’t know. But, it became clear to me, my wife and my accountant that working the business wasn’t working for us. I had a problem with someone in my upline and after some time, we quit the business. Game over.

Now here I am, about 5 years later, I have moved on with my life. I still take those three products, Classic or NOW (same thing just a flavor difference), Innergize and Fibrestore. I feel wonderful. I don’t experience the wintertime sickness like my coworkers. I have energy and enthusiasm. At just beyond 50 years of age, I outwork most people in their mid 30’s. If I run out of Reliv, it only takes about two weeks to really know something is missing. I feel more productive and more in charge of my life taking these products. Are they perfect? In my book they are pretty close.

Reliv is not an overnight feel-good solution. It needs to be in your body over a period of time in order for you to experience the benefits. You can’t just try one shake and be an improved individual. It don’t work that way. It is not a drug or cheap energy drink. It needs to be in your body to get into your cells and be available for your body to use. When a distributor sits down with you to go over Reliv, one of their objectives, should you decide to try it is to have you obligate to a 90 day trial. That is very good advice. 90 days is great time to observe your body with Reliv. One month may not net you anything.

I have learned a few Reliv tricks over the years. 1) They instruct you to take the shakes twice a day. If you can take just a tiny bit little less for each individual shake and then take three shakes a day, it actually does more good. My target is three shakes a day with about 2½ to 3 shakes quantity. It will be more readily available in your body. 2) For years I have been heavily into fruits and vegetables and avoid fast food. Therefore, I have trimmed back the Fibrestore to perhaps half of their recommended usage. If you are a bad eater, you may need the full scoop. 3) I only take about a half the recommended portion of the Innergize as well. I notice no change in my body whether I use a full scoop of Innergize or half. The one area that I don’t cut back is the main nutrition; whether I use the Classic or NOW I am faithful to it. I can tell if I wean myself off or throttle it back. I don’t mess with the main nutrition.

There may be other things out there that work well, but I am not willing to try them. I am not a scientist or a nutritionist. I am a nuts and bolts and wires kind of guy. I am not going to forgo something that is working just to try something that may or may not work. Having said that, if you have a nutritional product that you are using that is giving you positive results - good for you. Keep using what works for you. If you are satisfied you have no reason to look elsewhere.

I currently buy my Reliv from eBay. It is a good no obligation way to get it. Due to company policy I have to sit out of Reliv for 3 years before I can rejoin. When the time comes, I will rejoin. I want fresh products at my door at the best possible price.

For me Reliv is a life changing infusion of nutrition. It has given me a new potential. My life is better. It is a high-end high-performance supplement. I can’t imagine living without it.

Anonymous said...

I guess the statement you made:
“Please don't send me your success stories as this is not the purpose of this blog. “ tells it all.
You are looking for as much gloom and doom as you can dig up. Well I suppose if you choke the good out, nothing good can be said about it.

The_Reliv_Watchdog said...

Hello Poster - Thank you for taking the time to read my blog.

I have had a number of people write me since I started and say that Reliv has worked for them. I always tell them that if it's working keep taking it. BUT I also ask them to look at the possible problems also.

Since Reliv is high in soy it is very bad for women and younger children. Soy can also have adverse affects on men but not as bad as women or children. Also there is more and more research about the dangers of taking a high dosage vitamin. But it sounded like you have cut down on what the can suggests and so you are better than most.

And of course, if you are going to buy it, buy it from eBay!!

The_Reliv_Watchdog said...

Yes the purpose of this blog is for the negative side of Reliv. When I first joined I spent a lot of time looking online for the negative side and almost none could be found. Therefore I assumed this was a good company.

And still when you search, there aren't many sites that have or publish the negative side of Reliv. That is why I block most success stories from this site as my blog would quickly become over run by angry Reliv Distributors. :) You would be shocked at how many letters I get from them.

Cheryl said...

if soy is so bad for you, why do most pediatricians recommend it for babies who are having digestive problems with milk?

The_Reliv_Watchdog said...

Hi Cheryl,

Honestly I am surprised that you can even say this! Granted I believe that in some cases there are NO other choice for babies but if it can be avoided it should be.

Here is some info for you to read;

Phytoestrogens & Your Baby
Don't doubt it - phytoestrogens are bad for your baby.
Why expose your baby?
Many parents that fed soy formulas in the 1960's did so after receiving the advice that they were 'better than breast milk'. Had they known that these products contained phytoestrogens, compounds that are now known to cause thyroid disorders, behavioural and developmental disorders and cancer they would not have even contemplated the use of what was, in hindsight, an experimental product.
whocgrph.gif (1741 bytes) Most parents feeding soy formulas still have absolutely no idea that they contain these potent endocrine disrupting compounds, and by not disclosing the presence of phytoestrogens in their products, soy formula manufacturers are in violation of the WHO code of marketing breast-milk substitutes. For a review on the health concerns raised about soy infant formula, read the Food Commission Briefing Paper written by Dr Mike Fitzpatrick and Sue Dibb.

The message from Soy Online Service is simple. Breast is best, everything else is greatly inferior. If your child is lactose intolerant or allergic to dairy protein, there are alternatives to soy. Soy Online Service advice is do not feed a soy formula under any circumstances. Why? Despite knowing for years about the toxic effects of phytoestrogens, soy formula manufacturers have not acted to remove them from their products. Infants fed soy formulas are still being exposed to unacceptably high levels of phytoestrogens.

Why are we so sure that phytoestrogens are bad for your baby?

And why, when the evidence is plain are regulators not doing more to reduce the risk of exposing developing infants to these potent endocrine disruptors?

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has recently stated that a number of studies are currently addressing the soy-formula/phytoestrogen issue. But this gives precious little direction or peace of mind to those that are currently feeding, or have been fed, a soy formula. So when and how is the phytoestrogen issue likely to be resolved? In reality it could be years before science provides the answers, and perhaps those answers will never come. But if bodies such as the AAP don't know what to make of phytoestrogens, and a real risk is recognised, then the only decision that can be made is a precautionary one.

This is the essence of the ‘precautionary principle’, that is, a bona fide risk of harm that lacks some degree of scientific certainty should not prevent regulators from acting to protect those who are at risk of that harm.

In this instance the precautionary principle would dictate that:

* until phytoestrogens are proven to be safe for infants they should be removed from soy formulas.
* soy formula manufacturers should bear the burden of proving the safety of phytoestrogens.

The fact is that there is strong evidence of real harm being caused to soy formula fed infants by phytoestrogens leaves little room for debate on whether the precautionary principle should apply in this case.

The only ones likely to strongly disagree with the precautionary approach are soy formula manufacturers. In February 1998 the Infant Formula Council issued a statement on phytoestrogens. Like previous statements from infant formula manufacturers, their release was notable for its dismissal of any possible concern and its total failure to address the real issues.

The Infant Formula Council argument began by announcing that studies on infants fed soy formulas ‘have not indicated any evidence of harmful effect’. This statement is nonsense because there have been no studies that have specifically investigated the potential harmful effects that phytoestrogens might have on infants.

This statement is also incorrect. Although there have been no direct investigations of the potential harmful effects of phytoestrogens on infants, other studies provide strong evidence that phytoestrogens in soy formulas do harm infants.

Firstly, the consumption of soy-based formulas was associated with an increased occurrence of premature thelarche in Puerto Rico. In 1982 Pediatric endocrinologists in Puerto Rico reported on an increase in the incidence of breast development in girls younger than eight years of age. Of the 552 diagnosed cases reported between 1978 and 1982, a representative group of 130 were studied in an attempt to identify possible factors that might have contributed to what was considered an epidemic of premature thelarche.

Approximately 68 percent of the cases (85 out of 130) studied experienced the onset of thelarche before they were 18 months old. In these most overt cases, the investigators found a positive statistical association between premature thelarche and the consumption of soy formulas (22 cases), various meat products (10 cases) and a maternal history of ovarian cysts (16 cases).

Despite the probability that phytoestrogens in soy formulas were culpable in the Puerto Rico outbreak and the fact that mounting evidence that the early onset of puberty is increasing in the US (at the same time as soy formula sales reach record levels), there have been no studies to further investigate the link between soy formulas and premature thelarche.

What are the long term risks associated with premature thelarche? There is still debate over whether or not premature thelarche progresses to precocious puberty, but there is evidence from several studies that shows that it does increase the chance of early menarche. A higher incidence of ovarian cysts has also been found in girls that develop breasts at an early age. The earlier the onset of menarche, the greater the lifetime risk of breast cancer, and the early incidence of ovarian cysts is an established risk factor in the later development of ovarian cancer. One can only wonder why the Infant Formula Council don’t consider the Puerto Rico cases of premature thelarche as evidence of harm.

Secondly, like many endocrine disruptors, the soy phytoestrogens can cause thyroid dysfunction in humans. Reports from the late 1950s and early 1960s found that infants fed soy-flour formulas developed goitre, although the goitrogenic factors were not isolated at that time. More recent reports have further identified the actual toxicity of soy to the thyroid and mechanistic investigations have determined that the anti-thyroid factors in soy are the phytoestrogens.

Little doubt can remain that the goitre in infants fed soy formulas was caused by the phytoestrogens. Claims that phytoestrogens have had no effect on the infant endocrine system just don’t wash, unless of course the thyroid is no longer part of the endocrine system. If further evidence is needed that there is genuine cause for concern then it should be noted that malignant goitre has also occurred in experimental animals fed soy even when iodine is present in their diets and there is clear potential for soy isoflavones to cause a range of thyroid disorders in iodine sufficient humans.

It is possible, but unlikely, that the Infant Formula Council are not aware that phytoestrogens cause goitre. The soy industry has known that soy contains goitrogenic agents for over 60 years and for more than 40 years it has been known that these agents are also present in soy formulas. The cases of goitre that were reported in soy formula fed infants in the late 1950's ceased when manufacturers added more iodine to their products. But is the simple addition of more iodine to soy formulas an appropriate way in which to counteract the goitrogenic and anti-thyroid effects of the phytoestrogens?

To answer that question one must understand how the soy phytoestrogens (isoflavones) act on the thyroid. Isoflavonoid, and the related flavonoid, compounds are well known goitrogens and anti-thyroid agents. They typically act against the thyroid by inhibition of thyroid peroxidase (TPO). The soy isoflavones are no exception. They are potent inhibitors of TPO, in fact they are more potent than either of the anti-thyroid drugs PTU or MMI. What is food for thought is that in vitro the isoflavones inhibit TPO catalysed reactions at concentrations that are comparable to those found in the plasma of human infants fed soy formulas.

The fact is that soy formula fed infants appear to be at real risk of long term thyroid damage. If you want to be sure your child will not be at risk of such harm then the message is simple; avoid soy formulas. And just in case you're told that there is no evidence that thyroid soy formulas increase the risk of thyroid disease, consider the fact that a preliminary report has found a significant association between feeding soy formulas and the development of autoimmune thyroid disease (ATD). Although the mechanism by which ATD may occur in infants fed soy formulas was not discussed by the authors, ATD is associated with exposure to estrogens.

So far the only government agency to publicly acknowledge the potential of soy formulas to damage your baby's thyroid is the New Zealand Ministry of Health. Why not write to your health agencies and ask them to warn parents of the dangers of soy formulas?

herald01.jpg (66784 bytes)

Why you shouldn't believe soy formulas manufacturers?

They're just plain dishonest. Take, for example IDFA (Infant and Dietetic Foods Association) in the UK. In their 1 September 1999 letter to Jilly Rosser, Editor of Practising Midwife, IDFA's Executive Secretary, Sarah Jacobs, wrote:

"The accusation that soya-based infant formulas have been part of a 'large, uncontrolled and basically unmonitored infant experiment' is untrue. Soya infant formulas have a long history of use and there is considerable body of evidence based on human research studies and clinical trials to show that they are safe and that infants thrive well on them".

In truth there is no evidence that soy formulas are safe, but Dr Dan Sheehan's statement that infant formula feed has been a 'large, uncontrolled and basically unmonitored infant experiment' is accurate.

IDFA have been guilty of telling porkies about soy formulas previously. In their 10 January 1995 Press Release 'Phytoestrogens and Soya Infant Formulas' IDFA reported that:

1. levels of phytoestrogens if soya infant formulas are low.
2. most of the effects of phytoestrogens have been positive.
3. human milk contains phytoestrogens.

The first two points are outright lies. The latter point contains an element of truth. The breast milk of women eating soy products does contain phytoestrogens but the levels are more than 1000 times lower than the levels in soy formulas. IDFA's attempt to dupe consumers into thinking that infants exposed to soy formulas are only receiving low levels of phytoestrogens, comparable with those found in breast milk is viewed by Soy Online Service in the same light as the "better than breast milk" line that infant formula manufacturers sold consumers in the 1960's. And all this in the name of infant nutrition! When will the deliberate deception end?

Contact us

If you are concerned that soy formulas may be responsible for a thyroid problem or some other developmental disorder in your baby contact our medical expert; you may also receive free legal advice from Soy Online Service. Contact:


Useful references:

Bisphenol A in infant formula at 'dangerous' levels, says group, 12/6/2007 by Ahmed ElAmin. Bisphenol A (BPA), known as the 'gender bender' chemical, leaches into liquid baby formula from the linings of cans at levels dangerous to infant health, according to new research published yesterday by a US environmental group. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) said the research reveals that Bisphenol-A, used to line nearly all infant formula cans, was found in at levels "far higher" in the product than those that leach from plastic bottles under normal use. EWG had previously estimated that one out of every 16 infants fed ready-to-eat liquid formula are exposed to BPA at doses exceeding those that caused increased aggression and significant changes in testosterone levels in laboratory animals. Read more here

Soya Formula for Infants Should Only Be Administered on Doctor's Advice, Says German Consumer Safety Watchdog, 19-11-07: Infant formula and follow-up formula based on cow’s milk protein or soy protein is for sale in the European Union. Soy formula should only be administered to infants over a longer period when this is necessary on medical grounds. If a mother is unable to breastfeed her baby, she can fall back on infant formula from the drug store or supermarket. Products made from soybean protein and from cow’s milk are on sale. Soybeans contain high concentrations of isoflavones. They should, therefore, only be given to infants over longer periods in exceptional, justified cases. Isoflavones are similar to the female hormone oestrogen; however, they have a far weaker effect. Furthermore, soybeans may also contain higher amounts of the plant component, phytate. Professor Dr. Dr. Andreas Hensel, President of the Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR), comments, "Infant formula and follow-up formula made from soy protein should only be administered on medical grounds and then only under medical supervision." Read more here

POSSIBLE EFFECTS OF PHYTOESTROGENS IN SOY INFANT FORMULA Soy formula, which contains phytoestrogens, genistein and daidzein (also called isoflavones) is given to approximately 25% of those US children fed formula. It is estimated that an infant exclusively fed soy formula receives the estrogenic equivalent of at least five birth control pills per day. By contrast, almost no phytoestrogens have been detected in dairy-based infant formula or in human milk, even when the mother consumes soy products. A recent study found that babies fed soy-based formula had 13,000 to 22,000 times more isoflavones in their blood than babies fed milk-based formula. Scientists have known for years that isoflavones in soy products can depress thyroid function, causing autoimmune thyroid disease and even cancer of the thyroid. But what are the effects of soy products on the hormonal development of the infant, both male and female? Read the full article here.

Endocrine disrupters and female reproductive health. McLachlan JA, Simpson E, Martin M.
Department of Pharmacology, Tulane University School of Medicine, and Environmental Endocrinology Laboratory, Center for Bioenvironmental Research, Tulane and Xavier Universities, New Orleans, LA 70118, USA. john.mclachlan@tulane.edu There is growing evidence of the impact of estrogenic contaminants in the environment. Studies have shown that male fish in detergent-contaminated water express female characteristics, turtles are sex-reversed by polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), male frogs exposed to a common herbicide form multiple ovaries, pseudohermaphroditic offspring are produced by polar bears, and seals in contaminated water have an excess of uterine fibroids. Read more here

News from Soyatech.com - A substance found in soy-based infant formula and over-the-counter dietary supplements affects the development of ovaries and eggs in female infant mice, according to a study conducted by researchers at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Syracuse University. Read the article here.

GM: New study shows unborn babies could be harmed - Mortality rate for new-born rats six times higher when mother was fed on a diet of modified soya. Women who eat GM foods while pregnant risk endangering their unborn babies, startling new research suggests. The study - carried out by a leading scientist at the Russian Academy of Sciences - found that more than half of the offspring of rats fed on modified soya died in the first three weeks of life, six times as many as those born to mothers with normal diets. Six times as many were also severely underweight.

Healthy Alternatives to Conventional Infant Formula - go here for cow mik, goat-milk, liver, fortified commercial formula, egg yolk and whey-based formula alternatives suggested by Dr Mercola.

Manganese Content of Soy or Rice Beverages is High in Comparison to Infant Formulas - read about the effects of Manganese in our Soy Toxins section.

Soy Products and Infant Leukemia

Artificial baby milks: how safe is soya?

"Two separate studies -- one in animals and the other in humans -- that considered together suggest that a diet high in soybeans and other legumes during pregnancy and breastfeeding may have a subtle but long-term impact on the development of children." writes Dr Mercola. Read the full article here

Read the British Dietetic Associations position on the use of soya protein for infants Here.

New guidelines on infant feeding in the first 12 months of life by Judy More, Royal London Hospital, London. Read More Here

The United Kingdom Chief Medical Officer has warned all doctors that soy-based infant formulas should be used only in exceptional circumstances, because of a risk to long term Reproductive Health. Full information on the UK Expert Committee's findings are Here

In their Paediatric Policy, the Royal Australasian College of Physicians Health Policy Unit outlines their policy on the Use of Soy Protein Formula.

The Insider's Guide to Natural Medicine" is also alarmed at the harm soy does to baby's thyroid. Read their opinion Here.

An article published in Scientific American (2002) suggests soy infant formula may impair the developing immune system. Read More Here

Natural Life Magazine #68 - Soy Infant Formula Dangerous to Babies, Say Groups

Soy and children's health: a formula for trouble. Follow this Link to an article published in Environmental Health Perspectives.

The literature is replete with numerous studies showing deleterious effects on multiple organ systems - including the immune system. For example this letter from the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

"For the males, decreased sperm count and enlarged prostates. The treatment altered virtually every aspect of the reproductive system. The place next to the testes, the duct system called the epididymis where the sperm are stored prior to being ejaculated -- it was abnormally small, which could account also for lowered sperm count in the ejaculate. But we know also the testis is making fewer sperm. We see changes in growth rate as well. One of the interesting things is that these very low doses of estrogen increase rates of growth. The animals were actually growing larger than they would have normally. It was really quite a dramatic effect. The females went into puberty early. And we saw changes in behavior, changes in reactivity to the presence of other animals in the environment. Essentially the animals looked to be somewhat hyper-reactive to stimuli. We have, in other words, effects on brain and behavior. We're also seeing changes in liver enzyme activity which determines the way we respond to external chemicals, how fast we clear drugs, how we metabolize drugs.

In other words, in every aspect of physiology that we look for, we see effects. And they're permanent. And the important thing about what I'm talking about is we are only exposing babies to these chemicals for very, very short periods of time in development and the consequences are for the rest of the life of that individual. Once you change the development of an organ there is no way to undo that effect. It's a life sentence -- that's a lifetime consequence. Medical science can't undo the development of organs." Fredrick Vom Saal, Professor of Biological Sciences, University of Missouri in an interview on estrogenic chemicals in the environment conducted in February 1998 by Doug Hamilton, producer of FRONTLINE's "Fooling With Nature." Full interview can be found here

For further information on soy protein intolerance, follow this link to eMedicine.com

Canadian Health Coalition say Health Canada are exposing babies to serious risk and recommend that the routine use of soy-based infant formulas must be stopped.

It is already known to medical researchers that thyroid dysfunction in a mother increases the risk of her baby having subnormal thyroid and brain functions. This report of research at John Hopkins University supports the potential link between isoflavone consumption during pregnancy, thyroid harm and birth defects

There are links between high soy diets during pregnancy and nursing and eventual developmental changes in children. Congenital abnormalities of the genital tract are also increasing, and once again soy phytoestrogens may be implicated, according to a study that found a higher incidence of birth defects in male offspring of vegetarian, soy-consuming mothers.

"Excess consumption of soy or other phytoestrogens also might contribute to pseudopuberty." Soy has been linked as a potential clinical factor in the early onset of puberty termed "Precocious Puberty". Read more from eMedicine.com.

Read more about the potential effects of soy on Male Reproductive Health published in Endocrinology journal.

Soyonlineservice receives questions about whether soy formulas are causing scoliosis in children. As far as we know there has been no direct research on an association between soy formulas and childhood scoliosis, presumably because the industry has never admitted that it leaves this chemical in its products. Howerver, the levels of phytic acid in soy protein can run as high as 3% of the volume, and soy protein is 19% of soy formulas. Therefore it is feasible and entirely possible for its depletion to the later onset of scoliosis to result. Read more about Other Soy Toxins Here.

Lactational transfer of the soy isoflavone, genistein, in Sprague-Dawley rats consuming dietary genistein.

Doerge DR, Twaddle NC, Churchwell MI, Newbold RR, Delclos KB.

Division of Biochemical Toxicology, National Center for Toxicological Research, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Jefferson, AR 72079, USA.

Exposures of Sprague-Dawley rats to the soy isoflavone, genistein, throughout the entire lifespan have produced a number of effects on reproductive tissues, immune function, neuroendocrine function and behavior. Our previous studies investigated pharmacokinetics and disposition of genistein during adult and fetal periods and this study describes the internal exposures of post-natal day 10 (PND10) rat pups due to lactational transfer of genistein. Conjugated and aglycone forms of genistein were measured by using LC/MS/MS in serum (PND10) and milk (PND7) from lactating dams consuming a genistein-fortified soy-free diet, and in serum from their pups at a time when milk was the only food source (PND10). This study shows that limited lactational transfer of genistein to rat pups occurs and that internal exposures to the active aglycone form of genistein are generally lower than those measured previously in the fetal period. These results suggest that developmental effects attributable to genistein exposure in our chronic and multi-generation studies are more likely to result from fetal exposures because of the higher levels of the active estrogenic aglycone form of genistein in utero, although the possibility of neonatal responses cannot be excluded.

Prof Kenneth Setchell:

Exposure of infants to phyto-oestrogens from soy-based infant formula
Setchell KD, Zimmer-Nechemias L, Cai J, Heubi JE. Lancet 1997 Jul 5 350:9070 23-7.
BACKGROUND: The isoflavones genistein, daidzein, and their glycosides, found in high concentrations in soybeans and soy-protein foods, may have beneficial effects in the prevention or treatment of many hormone-dependent diseases. Because these bioactive phyto-oestrogens possess a wide range of hormonal and non-hormonal activities, it has been suggested that adverse effects may occur in infants fed soy-based formulas.

METHODS: To evaluate the extent of infant exposure to phyto-oestrogens from soy formula, the isoflavone composition of 25 randomly selected samples from five major brands of commercially available soy-based infant formulas were analysed, and the plasma concentrations of genistein and daidzein, and the intestinally derived metabolite, equol, were compared in 4-month-old infants fed exclusively soy-based infant formula (n = 7), cow-milk formula (n = 7), or human breast-milk (n = 7). FINDINGS: All of the soy formulas contained mainly glycosides of genistein and daidzein, and the total isoflavone content was similar among the five formulas analysed and was related to the proportion of soy isolate used in their manufacture. From the concentrations of isoflavones in these formulas (means 32-47 micrograms/mL), the typical daily volume of milk consumed, and average bodyweight, a 4-month-old infant fed soy formula would be exposed to 28-47 per day, or about 4.5-8.0 mg/kg bodyweight per day, of total isoflavones. Mean (SD) plasma concentrations of genistein and daidzein in the seven infants fed soy-based formulas were 684 (443) ng/mL and 295 (60) ng/mL, respectively, which was significantly greater (p < 0.05) than in the infants fed either cow-milk formulas (3.2 [0.7] and 2.1 [0.3] ng/mL), or human breast-milk (2.8 [0.7] and 1.4 [0.1] ng/mL), and an order of magnitude higher per bodyweight than typical plasma concentrations of adults consuming soy foods.

INTERPRETATION: The daily exposure of infants to isoflavones in soy infant-formulas is 6-11 fold higher on a bodyweight basis than the dose that has hormonal effects in adults consuming soy foods. Circulating concentrations of isoflavones in the seven infants fed soy-based formula were 13000-22000 times higher than plasma oestradiol concentrations in early life, and may be sufficient to exert biological effects, whereas the contribution of isoflavones from breast-milk and cow-milk is negligible.

Isoflavone content of infant formulas and the metabolic fate of these phytoestrogens in early life.
Setchell KD, Zimmer-Nechemias L, Cai J, Heubi JE. Am J Clin Nutr 1998 Dec 68:6 Suppl 1453S-1461S.

Soy-based infant formulas have been in use for >30 y. These formulas are manufactured from soy protein isolates and contain significant amounts of phytoestrogens of the isoflavone class. As determined by HPLC, the isoflavone compositions of commercially available formulas are similar qualitatively and quantitatively and are consistent with the isoflavone composition of soy protein isolates. Genistein, found predominantly in the form of glycosidic conjugates, accounts for >65% of the isoflavones in soy-based formulas. Total isoflavone concentrations of soy-based formulas prepared for infant feeding range from 32 to 47 mg/L, whereas isoflavone concentrations in human breast milk are only 5.6 +/- 4.4 microg/L (mean +/- SD, n = 9). Infants fed soy-based formulas are therefore exposed to 22-45 mg isoflavones/d (6-11 mg x kg body wt(-1) x d(-1)), whereas the intake of these phytoestrogens from human milk is negligible (<0.01 mg/d). The metabolic fate of isoflavones from soy-based infant formula is described. Plasma isoflavone concentrations reported previously for 4-mo-old infants fed soy-based formula were 654-1775 microg/L (mean: 979.7 microg/L: Lancet 1997:350;23-7), significantly higher than plasma concentrations of infants fed either cow-milk formula (mean +/- SD: 9.4 +/- 1.2 microg/L) or human breast milk (4.7 +/- 1.3 microg/L). The high steady state plasma concentration of isoflavones in infants fed soy-based formula is explained by reduced intestinal biotransformation, as evidenced by low or undetectable concentrations of equol and other metabolites, and is maintained by constant daily exposure from frequent feeding. Isoflavones circulate at concentrations that are 13,000-22,000-fold higher than plasma estradiol concentrations in early life. Exposure to these phytoestrogens early in life may have long-term health benefits for hormone-dependent diseases.
Author Address
Clinical Mass Spectrometry Center, Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, OH 45229, USA.

Prof Cliff Irvine:

Phytoestrogens in soy-based infant foods: concentrations, daily intake, and possible biological effects.
Irvine CH, Fitzpatrick MG, Alexander SL. Proc Soc Exp Biol Med 1998 Mar 217:3 247-53.
Exposure to estrogenic compounds may pose a developmental hazard to infants. Soy products, which contain the phytoestrogens, genistein and daidzein, are becoming increasingly popular as infant foods. To begin to evaluate the potential of the phytoestrogens in these products to affect infants, we measured total genistein and daidzein contents of commercially available soy-based infant formulas, infant cereals, dinners, and rusks. We also assayed phytoestrogens in dairy-based formulas and in breast milk from omnivorous or vegetarian mothers. In most cases, the glucoside forms of the phytoestrogens were hydrolyzed before separation by HPLC. Mean (+/-SEM) total genistein and daidzein contents in four soy infant formulas were 87+/-3 and 49+/-2 microg/g, respectively. The phytoestrogen content of cereals varied with brand, with genistein ranging from 3-287 microg/g and daidzein from 2-276 microg/g. By contrast, no phytoestrogens were detected in dairy-based infant formulas or in human breast milk, irrespective of the mother's diet (detection limit = 0.05 microg/ml). When fed according to the manufacturer's instruction, soy formulas provide the infant with a daily dose rate of total isoflavones (i.e., genistein + daidzein) of approximately 3 mg/kg body weight, which is maintained at a fairly constant level between 0-4 months of age. Supplementing the diet of 4-month-old infants with a single daily serving of cereal can increase their isoflavone intake by over 25%, depending on the brand chosen. This rate of isoflavone intake is much greater than that shown in adult humans to alter reproductive hormones. Since the available evidence suggests that infants can digest and absorb dietary phytoestrogens in active forms and since neonates are generally more susceptible than adults to perturbations of the sex steroid milieu, we suggest that it would be highly desirable to study the effects of soy isoflavones on steroid-dependent developmental processes in human babies.
Author Address
Animal and Veterinary Sciences Group, Lincoln University, Canterbury, New Zealand.
Download full paper.

The potential adverse effects of soybean phytoestrogens in infant feeding [letter].
Irvine C, Fitzpatrick M, Robertson I, Woodhams D. N Z Med J 1995 May 24 108:1000 208-9.
Download letter.

Dr Dan Sheehan:

Herbal medicines, phytoestrogens and toxicity: risk:benefit considerations.
Sheehan DM. Proc Soc Exp Biol Med 1998 Mar 217:3 379-85.
There are several suggested health benefits of phytoestrogens, particularly those found in soy products. Herbal medicines are also widely thought to confer health benefits. Additionally, drugs are prescribed to improve human health, but unlike phytoestrogens and herbal medicines, toxicities are defined in experimental animals and monitored in humans before and after marketing. Knowledge of toxicity is crucial to decrease the risk:benefit ratio; this knowledge defines appropriate conditions for use and strategies for development of safer products. However, our awareness of the toxicity of herbal medicines and phytoestrogen-containing foods is dramatically limited compared to drugs. Some aspects of the toxicity of herbal medicines are briefly reviewed; it is concluded that virtually all of our knowledge is derived from human exposures leading to acute toxicities. Importantly, detection of toxicity is sporadic, and little information is available from prior animal experimentation. Additionally, well-organized monitoring of human populations (as occurs for drugs) is virtually nonexistent. Important toxicities with long latencies are particularly difficult to associate with a causative agent during or even after large scale exposures, as exemplified by tobacco smoking and lung cancer; estrogen replacement therapy and endometrial cancer; diethylstilbestrol and reproductive tract cancers; and fetal alcohol exposure and birth defects. These considerations suggest that much closer study in experimental animals and human populations exposed to phytoestrogen-containing products, and particularly soy-based foods, is necessary. Among human exposures, infant soy formula exposure appears to provide the highest of all phytoestrogen doses, and this occurs during development, often the most sensitive life-stage for induction of toxicity. Large, carefully controlled studies in this exposed infant population are a high priority.
Author Address
Department of Health and Human Services, Food and Drug Administration, Jefferson, Arkansas 72079-9502.

Isoflavone content of breast milk and soy formulas: benefits and risks [letter]
Sheehan DM. Clin Chem 1997 May 43:5 850.

The case for expanded phytoestrogen research.
Sheehan DM. Proc Soc Exp Biol Med 1995 Jan 208:1 3-5.

Other work:

Effects of lactational exposure to soy isoflavones on reproductive system in neonatal female rats.
Liu Z, Zhang X, Li L, Zhang W, Cui W, Song Y, Wang W, Jia X, Li N, Yan W, Basic Clin Pharmacol Toxicol. 2008 Mar;102(3):317-24.

Lactational exposure to isoflavones could result in oestrogen-like actions on the reproductive system of neonate female rats, which mechanisms may be, at least, involved with modifications of hormone production and steroid receptor transcription in the reproductive system.

Genistein at a concentration present in soy infant formula inhibits Caco-2BBe cell proliferation by causing G2/M cell cycle arrest.
Chen AC, Donovan SM. J Nutr. 2004 Jun;134(6):1303-8.

Thus, a biphasic effect of genistein was seen with a low dose stimulating intestinal cell proliferation through the estrogen receptor, whereas a high dose of genistein inhibited intestinal cell proliferation and altered cell cycle dynamics. A high dose of genistein may potentially compromise intestinal growth.

Manipulation of prenatal hormones and dietary phytoestrogens during adulthood alter the sexually dimorphic expression of visual spatial memory.
Lund TD, Lephart ED. BMC Neurosci. 2001;2(1):21. Epub 2001 Dec 18.

Hypocalcemic tetany in 'alternative' soy milk nutrition in the first months of life
Anil M, Demirakca S, Dotsch J, Kiess W. Klin Padiatr. 1996 Nov-Dec;208(6):323-6.

A 14 weeks old infant was admitted to the intensive care unit with life-threatening hypocalcemic-hyperphosphatemic spasms. Hypocalcemia-hyperphosphatemia was found to have been caused by feeding a high phosphate/ low calcium soy milk. The daily uptake of calcium was calculated to have been 3.3-6 mmol that of phosphate 30 mmol. The parents strongly believed that soy milk formulas were equivalent to breast milk and cow's milk formulas and lived on a strictly vegetarian diet.

Vegetarian feeding had led to life-threatening hypocalcemic hyperphosphatemic spasms in the infant. We conclude that malnutrition and false nutritional beliefs have to be included as a potential cause of early hypocalcemia in infants.

Read more on milk alternative issues on our Chicken Roost page

The phenotype of the aromatase knockout mouse reveals dietary phytoestrogens impact significantly on testis function.
Robertson KM, O'Donnell L, Simpson ER, Jones ME. Endocrinology 2002 Aug;143(8):2913-21

Our study highlights the importance of estrogen in spermatogenesis and shows that relatively low levels of dietary phytoestrogens have a biological effect in the testis.

Estrogen and spermatogenesis.
O'Donnell L, Robertson KM, Jones ME, Simpson ER. Endocr Rev 2001 Jun;22(3):289-318

This review highlights the ability of exogenous estrogen exposure to perturb spermatogenesis and male fertility, as well as the emerging physiological role of estrogens in male fertility, suggesting that, in this local context, estrogenic substances should also be considered "male hormones."

Premature thelarche in Puerto Rico. A search for environmental factors.
Freni-Titulaer LW, Cordero JF, Haddock L, Lebrón G, Martínez R, Mills JL. Am J Dis Child 1986 Dec 140:12 1263-7.
Pediatric endocrinologists in Puerto Rico reported a threefold increase in the number of patients with
premature thelarche seen between 1978 and 1981. A matched-pairs case-control study was conducted to evaluate associations with potential environmental exposures to substances with estrogenic activity, as well as with familial factors. Analysis was performed on 120 pairs, the case subjects of which were selected from those diagnosed between 1978 and 1982. In subjects 2 years of age or older at the onset of thelarche, no significant associations were found. In subjects with onset before 2 years of age, significant positive associations were found with a maternal history of ovarian cysts, consumption of soy-based formula, and consumption of various meat products. A statistically significant negative association was found with consumption of corn products. These statistical associations are probably not sufficient to explain the reported increase because in over 50% of the case subjects there was no exposure to any of the risk factors for which statistical associations were found. Exposure to other substances with possible estrogenic effect, such as waste products from pharmaceutical factories and pesticides, was also excluded as a possible cause. These findings suggest that better diagnosis and reporting, or conceivably the presence of entirely new, unsuspected factors, could account for the reported increase.

Developmental effects of dietary phytoestrogens in Sprague-Dawley rats and interactions of genistein and daidzein with rat estrogen receptors alpha and beta in vitro.
Casanova M, You L, Gaido KW, Archibeque-Engle S, Janszen DB, Heck HA. Toxicol Sci 1999 Oct;51(2):236-44

...effects of dietary genistein included a decreased rate of body-weight gain, a markedly increased (2.3-fold) uterine/body weight (U/BW) ratio on postnatal day (pnd) 21, a significant acceleration of puberty among females...

Soy isoflavone supplements antagonize reproductive behavior and estrogen receptor alpha- and beta-dependent gene expression in the brain.
Patisaul HB, Dindo M, Whitten PL, Young LJ. Endocrinology 2001 Jul;142(7):2946-52

Supplement treatment also resulted in a significant decrease in receptive behavior in estrogen- and progesterone-primed females. The observed disruption of sexual receptivity by the isoflavone supplement is probably due to antiestrogenic effects observed in the brain.

Effect of estradiol and soy phytoestrogens on choline acetyltransferase and nerve growth factor mRNAs in the frontal cortex and hippocampus of female rats.
Pan Y, Anthony M, Clarkson TB. Proc Soc Exp Biol Med 1999 Jun;221(2):118-25

Our data suggest that soy phytoestrogens may function as estrogen agonists in regulating ChAT and NGF mRNAs in the brain of female rats.

Influence of perinatal genistein exposure on the development of MNU-induced mammary carcinoma in female Sprague-Dawley rats.
Yang J, Nakagawa H, Tsuta K, Tsubura A. Cancer Lett 2000 Feb 28;149(1-2):171-9

Genistein treatment during the perinatal period resulted in lower body weight and lower relative uterine-ovarian weight at 35 days, and a prolonged estrus cycle with a long estrus phase at 12-16 weeks.

Thus, perinatal genistein is an endocrine disrupter and increases the multiplicity of MNU-induced mammary carcinoma in rats.

Neurobehavioral actions of coumestrol and related isoflavonoids in rodents.
Whitten PL, Patisaul HB, Young LJ. Neurotoxicol Teratol 2002 Jan-Feb;24(1):47-54

Treatment of rat dams with a 100-ppm coumestrol diet from birth to postnatal day (PND) 21 induced premature anovulation in female offspring, and treatment from birth to PND 10 suppressed sexual behavior in male offspring.

Full Abstract Here

Cross-species and interassay comparisons of phytoestrogen action.
Whitten PL, Patisaul HB. Environ Health Perspect 2001 Mar;109 Suppl 1:5-20

In vivo data show that phytoestrogens have a wide range of biologic effects at doses and plasma concentrations seen with normal human diets. Significant in vivoresponses have been observed in animal and human tests for bone, breast, ovary, pituitary, vasculature, prostate, and serum lipids. The doses reported to be biologically active in humans (0.4--10 mg/kg body weight/day) are lower than the doses generally reported to be active in rodents (10--100 mg/kg body weight/day), although some studies have reported rodent responses at lower doses.

Full Abstract Here

Placental transfer of the soy isoflavone genistein following dietary and gavage administration to Sprague Dawley rats.
Doerge DR, Churchwell MI, Chang HC, Newbold RR, Delclos KB. Reprod Toxicol 2001 Mar-Apr;15(2):105-10

These studies show that genistein aglycone crosses the rat placenta and can reach fetal brain from maternal serum genistein levels that are relevant to those observed in humans.

Full Abstract Here

Mass spectrometric determination of Genistein tissue distribution in diet-exposed Sprague-Dawley rats.
Chang HC, Churchwell MI, Delclos KB, Newbold RR, Doerge DR. J Nutr 2000 Aug;130(8):1963-70

Endocrine-responsive tissues including brain, liver, mammary, ovary, prostate, testis, thyroid and uterus showed significant dose-dependent increases in total genistein concentration.

Full Abstract Here

Genistein exerts estrogen-like effects in male mouse reproductive tract.
Strauss L, Makela S, Joshi S, Huhtaniemi I, Santti R. Mol Cell Endocrinol 1998 Sep 25;144(1-2):83-93

...genistein (2.5 mg s.c./kg of body weight/day for 9 days) reduced testicular and serum testosterone concentrations, pituitary LH-content and prostate weight.

These results suggest that in adult males, genistein induces the typical estrogenic effects in doses comparable to those present in soy-based diets.

Full Abstract Here

Maternal exposure to genistein during pregnancy increases carcinogen-induced mammary tumorigenesis in female rat offspring.

Hilakivi-Clarke L, Cho E, Onojafe I, Raygada M, Clarke R. Oncol Rep 1999 Sep-Oct;6(5):1089-95

A high estrogenic environment in utero may increase subsequent breast cancer risk.

Our results suggest that a maternal exposure to subcutaneous administration of genistein can increase mammary tumorigenesis in the offspring, mimicking the effects of in utero estrogenic exposures. Further, increased ER protein levels and reduced PKC activity in the mammary gland may be involved in increasing susceptibility to carcinogen-induced mammary tumorigenesis in rats exposed to genistein in utero.

Effects of dietary genistein exposure during development on male and female CD (Sprague-Dawley) rats.
Delclos KB, Bucci TJ, Lomax LG, Latendresse JR, Warbritton A, Weis CC, Newbold RR. Reprod Toxicol 2001 Nov;15(6):647-63

Human exposure to genistein is predominantly through consumption of soy products, including soy-based infant formula and dietary supplements.

Body weight and feed consumption of the treated dams prior to parturition showed a decreasing trend with a significant reduction at the highest dose. Litter birth weight was depressed in the 1250 ppm dose group, and pups of both sexes in that dose group had significantly decreased body weights relative to controls at the time of sacrifice. The most pronounced organ weight effects in the pups were decreased ventral prostate weight in males at the 1250 ppm dose and a trend toward higher pituitary gland to body weight ratios in both sexes. Histopathologic examination of female pups revealed ductal/alveolar hyperplasia of the mammary glands at 250 to 1250 ppm. Ductal/alveolar hyperplasia and hypertrophy also occurred in males, with significant effects seen at 25 ppm and above. Abnormal cellular maturation in the vagina was observed at 625 and 1250 ppm, and abnormal ovarian antral follicles were observed at 1250 ppm. In males, aberrant or delayed spermatogenesis in the seminiferous tubules relative to controls was observed at 1250 ppm. There was a deficit of sperm in the epididymis at 625 and 1250 ppm relative to controls, although testicular spermatid head counts and epididymal spermatozoa counts did not show significant differences from controls at these doses. Both sexes showed an increase in the incidence and/or severity of renal tubal mineralization at doses of 250 ppm and above.

Dietary genistein thus produced effects in multiple estrogen-sensitive tissues in males and females that are generally consistent with its estrogenic activity. These effects occurred within exposure ranges achievable in humans.

The phytoestrogen genistein induces thymic and immune changes: A human health concern?
Srikanth Yellayi*, Afia Naaz*, Melissa A. Szewczykowski*, Tomomi Sato*, Jeffrey A. Woods, Jongsoo Chang§, Mariangela Segre¶, Clint D. Allred§, William G. Helferich§,, and Paul S. Cooke* Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, Vol. 99, Issue 11, 7616-7621, May 28, 2002

Use of soy-based infant formulas and soy/isoflavone supplements has aroused concern because of potential estrogenic effects of the soy isoflavones genistein and daidzein.

...genistein produced suppression of humoral immunity.

Genistein injected at 8 mg/kg per day produced serum genistein levels comparable to those reported in soy-fed human infants, and this dose caused significant thymic and immune changes in mice.

Critically, dietary genistein at concentrations that produced serum genistein levels substantially less than those in soy-fed infants produced marked thymic atrophy. These results raise the possibility that serum genistein concentrations found in soy-fed infants may be capable of producing thymic and immune abnormalities, as suggested by previous reports of immune impairments in soy-fed human infants.


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Hi. My Aunt sold me RELIV for installment basis for my baby and me but then I was not convinced. I hesitate to take this product. Only God can control our death and only us can take care of our health by proper diet( natural food) and exercise. So for REliv distributors dont tell us that it will lengthen our lives because you are not God. Anytime God wants to take your life, He can. Reliv can't save you from this. Thank you for this blog. Its really helpful.

Anonymous said...

All I want to know is it all Reliv Distributors say????????? It is expensive and after taking Now, Innergize and Fiberstore for 3 months I feel no different??? I cannot justify the expense of this product and taking it twice a day, or maybe 3 in some cases, makes me question the product. Am I peeing it down the toilet????????

The_Reliv_Watchdog said...

Hello Poster - First of all thank you for taking the time to read my blog and for sending in a comment.

Sadly the only thing many Reliv distributors, most of the ones I know, care about is making money and they will tell you anything to get you to continue to take their products. This is also true of most if not all MLMs.

Many of these Distributors have given up jobs, sometimes good paying jobs, in the hopes of making a fortune selling some "super product" but sadly the only way they can is by forcing these products on friends or family or simply by outright lying.

While Reliv might have a good mixture of vitamins, because of the high soy content and the only high price, sadly you are just simply peeing them down the toilet. Your body can only handle so many vitamins and anything extra is just passed through your system and down the toilet.

Personally I just take a cheap vitamin from the store like One A Day or something similar. If you eat a good, well balanced diet, then a multi-vitamin may not even be needed.

Anonymous said...

I have taken Reliv for 7 years and since this is a negative response site I won't talk about the product. I have tried and failed at the biz for years, it is one of the worst pay structures of all MLM's. I was told I could do the biz part time when I signed up, to get 40% profit level u have to spend $5000 your told that's cheap to start a biz. The first year after talking to about 50 people with help from my upline I sold half of my first $5000 purchase. The following year I find out u have to sell aprox $5000 worth in the Jan and fed to requalify to keep that 40% profit level that I paid for. I was pissed to say the least. I start taking more notice to the way the pay structure works. The lovely people at the top get paid better get more bonuses extra. The bottom and middle tear people get jack for pay, and u must requalify in Jan and fed to get paid from your down line or u get nothing the person above gets it. I've been in alot of MLM's since getting with reliv. And made 5 times more from other good company's. I could go on about more crazy things, I will stop with one more thing the new 24k drink cost me $3.50 per shot it retails at 4.50 a profit of only a dollar not good. I bought 2 cases thats 12 shots reliv will only ship by fedex and charges $10 to ship. If your counting that's $2 profit wow big money. I live 20 min from the plant they won't let my pick its up for free. The only way to make money on 24k is have a huge down line, back to making the top people big money again. I've just about enough.

Anonymous said...

Hello. I'm in The UK and Had someone approch. Me about "the health benefits and financial security of reliv" thanks to you, I think I'll give it a miss.

Anonymous said...


Senor Pescador said...

another result on google says 95-99?% failure rate for an MLM,for 'reliv' and soy,ger real!!!! GM soy are you kidding??!!
seems most negative posters here are probably NOT not aware of real data or facts,of their bodies nutrition and how the human body functions
GM soy causes all kind of health problems,
...for life,/...
and SOY is only 8 essential amino acids,
where hemp seed oil is 9,
all 9 the body needs to make the other 22,...
read folks, this USA is sickest country in the world, a real sad joke, but here too arrogant,greedy, uneducated, obese and xenophobic to know there is 'a rest of this planet'

this company again is corporate
and all about making money for just a few,
{ and the Chinese make hemp seed oil cakes for their school kids in poor areas, again why it is illegal}

and of course Mike Adams, the Health ranger is I would say close to 100% correct [naturalnews.com] on any and all issues with what is going on,

best is to eat real food, not supplements,
lazy fat a** gringo sheeples want an immediate solution,as always

I have a site with some basic info,
not trying to sell you gringo sheeples anything especially the uneducated south,like SC
mine is www.yourhealthisyouronlyrealwealth.com

I am in sustainable fish biz, but mainly interested in a more educated culture,as consumers like UK and Mid east,USAis cheap Chinese loving food crap, like the fake honey,

you USA folks are in serious problems and to believe a MLM company!!!
again the get rich quick scheme,
some are selling this here in Myrtle Beach,

look at their bodies all still obese, but then also, they do not exercise, nor surf,

thank God back to CentroAmerica ASAP for me, and cleaner food, air, and walking each and every day and fresh fruits vegetables and seafood I am lucky, and feel blessed

good luck, you folks need it, and sincerely "God Bless", prayer in your life and a personal relation to God is best, in my opinion
but RELIV, some of these posters have seen thru this 'scam'

Anonymous said...

I have never posted on anyone's blog ever and I hate to speak negatively about anything because I understand the boomerang effect. But I have to confess after 3 days of taking this product, I don't feel well at all. And it's extremely bloating. Within 1 hour of consuming this product, I acquire a dull headache, my stomach distends like an early pregnancy, and my joints have become fiercely tight when I kneel or sit in an Indian squat.

I did not know it was soy based, that answers allot for me. Maybe it's wonderful, but my body has rejected it ..

I will stick to fruits and vegetables, a meatless diet, excluding fish and a whole lot of prayer.

Anonymous said...

well, I am really surprised at these comments. I was a very sick indivdual and was introduced to relive in 1995 and have been using the NOW (basic nutritonal product) on and off since. It used to be made w/whey and they changed to soy, which in my opinion was a huge mistake. I do hate the company itself..sometimes quite arrogant, but that said, I feel I have been helped tremendously by it.

Anonymous said...

Part 2, Mixed on Reliv, positive & Neg.
One more thought, what about the whole detox thing, that you feel worse 1st because your body is detoxing, I did go through that 1st before seeing the benefits. I make my own bread (spelt) do a lot to eat healthy, no processed pre packaged foods for years, did not see a change in health until Reliv. I have that it cost so much, and that I am making people above me rich. It does stink how many under you you have to get to really earn anything. I feel stuck because other things we have tried have not worked for us like this has!

chrisd said...

Thank you for posting this blog. I am trying Reliv products and my word, are they expensive.

I have also heard the rhetoric about their cure alls. I have friends who are using it and swear by it. This remains to be seen.

I could find no complaints about this product but I have heard that it's because they threaten people with lawsuits. I have no idea if this is true either.

I appreciate all the comments, both positive and negative. I also appreciated the information about soy.

Keep up the good work. Hearing from both sides is very good.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this medium to tell the facts about this Reliv hard sell insensable product(s). Unfortunately friends want to help friends and get stuck into this Relive money hole. This Soy product was not good for me and I had terrible physical problems with it. In my attempt to send it back for their so called 100% guarantee, I was somehow made a distributer and they "do not provide refunds to distributers." They sent me an invoice for $25.00 and charged it to my credit card for nothing but glossy ads. This is truly taking advantage of people who are sincere and get into this with behavioral tactics.

Anonymous said...

I am a bit perplexed. I tried Reliv a few years ago and then stopped because I just thought it was too expensive and I really didn't notice any benefits.

Going through Menopause...I felt, well, maybe give it another try. I have been on it for 2 months and I have been having "Issues". Got blood results back and my Thyroid is really off (I am on medication too) my Vitamin "D" is very low, plus I am having "women" issues. I truly thought by now I would be seeing results. Oh, also main reason for starting was major joint pain....its the same! Now, I read this pamphlet that stated that you will feel worse before getting better, but this is "medical" problems not just head aches and such. Do I continue for another month? or return the very "expensive" products that I just received today? Help!

The_Reliv_Watchdog said...

Hi - First of all, thank you for taking the time to read my blog. I hope you found some useful information.

I would strongly suggest that you consult your MD about how to proceed. The soy in Reliv can be extremely harmful to certain people with high risk of Breast Cancer. Your distributor will poo poo this but it's true, and we have seen first hand the damage and pain it can cause. If your MD gives you the go ahead, then try it for another month. But after that if you don't feel any different, I would suggest stopping.

But please, talk with your MD and take some time to study out the negative side of Soy and Soy products. The soy industry has spent millions trying to make themselves look good and so there is LOTS of positive info out there.

Steven Kintu said...

hi all,
I was recently introduced to reliv and being naive, I got excited and parted with my little savings and borrowed as well from the credit card £2000. I gave the suppliment to my daughter who reacted with diahorea for now a week. I am disappointed and stuck with the stock in my house with no one interested. All I am getting from the guys who promised me help to market it is to call a meeting and recruit others in the scum!!

Anonymous said...

...also now buying my "product" from EBAY or some clever marketers that are selling the stuff, including postage and taxes for less than I get it direct from the company!

Shorten my focus and reading time: what about Whey? Wonderful [sounding] Whey products from a food company I believe in - Trader Joe's where I buy maybe 70% of my groceries.

Please comment.

My 2 cents...all my life I have seen and become opinionated about "Direct Sales" and/or MLM as I have personally known many of their ilk, from the era of a major "Dance Studio" scam [what old person needs multiple 'Life Memberships' ?] – Through ‘Cactus Juice’

Nevertheless I fell hard, through advertising on Christian Radio, and bought into Reliv with a credit card.

'They' make a statement that few supplements ever garner a U.S. Patent, and the Chief Scientist really did get the patent on a well known infant formula while at a major [chemical] company; and went on to being granted at least a half-dozen U.S. Patents since joining Reliv and is now the vice president.

Frankly, I don't usually read the 'spoiler' sites whether it be on investments, church beliefs, or vitamin pills but yours is somehow a] ahead of the Reliv website, and b] seems to be written with great care.

In closing, this morning I had once again heard, on Christian Radio, continued convincing information about 'home based business’; did a little research and discovered it was for a really big international herbal supplement corporation.

Same smell. A nice looking young fellow, blends some stuff and sells it on a street corner, and a little over 40 years later there are 2 million independent distributors in 75 countries, promises "a 73% profit margin on retail sales"

As a former Engineer, I came to understand that the 'mark up' is 50times the raw cost of nuts, bolts, screws; add to that research and development, sales costs and the hundreds of men and women that earn a living on production lines putting the stuff together; vacation time, sick leave, along with quality control, warranties, and functional obsolescence.

Compare that to putting powder in a can, and promising 73% profit margin [with room for over-rides, bonuses, and lots of expensive advertising].

Replace your FibreStore with Metamucil [sugar-free orange flavor], wheat grass and green stuff, good vitamins, and just one expensive 'target' product to wit: ReversAge, perhaps Whey[?] and see If you can make it to 80 [or so].

I'm 73 now!

Thanks for listening to:

A disgruntled Reliv Master Affiliate - Distributor

Alex said...

I am a very health-conscious American especially after I had allowed myself to be suckered into the USANA scam years and years ago. Thankfully, my bank account and self esteem have made a full recovery.

For years, though, I did work at a place where a few people did, indeed, distribute RELIV and have gotten beaten and badgered when I called them out on their lies and deceit. For example, one woman said that her nephew took RELIV and he was cured of Down syndrome. DOWN SYNDROM. That must be some shake to be able to completely change your chromosome structure and DNA, and allow for physical and mental transformation. If that's the case, can I start taking the Horse shake if I want to be a horse by this time next year? This stood out amongst other instances, and I grew tired of the vague Facebook posts, such as, "Are you a motivated individual who wants to help humanity and run a successful business? Send me a private message!"

The most disturbing facet of said individuals, though, is the fact that Christianity is brought into the equation. "GOD has put RELIV on earth to relieve humanity of its suffering! HE is giving us a way to fight our diseases!" GOD apparently wants to make some money off of us, as well!

It's sick and the people are sick. Thank you for running this blog and reminding me why this stuff is evil.

Anonymous said...

Hello, I urge all of you to read a New York Times bestseller book titled "The Wheat Belly" by Dr. William Davis.

Anonymous said...

Miracle cure or scam???

I say it's really neither one. People who expect it to miraculously cure them or make big money with little effort are bound to be disappointed. You have to approach it as a business that helps others nutritionally, and you must use and believe in the product yourself.

Anonymous said...


Thank you for this site. I too have been approached by Reliv distributors claiming that Reliv will cure my mother's cancer and will do all sorts of wonderful health things for us.

I only once became part of an MLM, with Amgen. I have shied away from Reliv merely because of this aspect of the product. Thank you for the confirmation that Reliv is primarily an MLM.

However, I am curious about the lunasin that is part of the hype. I have purchased lunasin through a company called Carefast. There is research on lunasin on PubMed. And Carefast clearly posts the ingredients of its lunasin product, as 250 mg of lunasin.



This research is quite preliminary, and no large randomized trials have been conducted.

Reliv Watchdog, do you have any information on lunasin or other products containing lunasin?

Thanks for the site.

Anonymous said...

Hi, I'm so glad I found your site. I don't see any recent replies from you. Are you still running this blog? A new friend has been hounding me to buy Reliv. She's very nice but the cure all claims are ridiculous! When I once again told her I cannot afford it, she insulted me. Apparently I don't care enough about my health since I won't buy their exorbitantly priced Reliv. I sent her an email with a link to your site & a link to a site that explains MLM. Glad I found your blog. Thanks!

Julie Ann said...

I have a 5 year old daughter who has been taking Reliv now for approx 3 years every day as a vitamin supplement . I stress a supplement as distinct from replacing her daily nutritional needs of fresh fruit and veg as a growing child.
In fact it has become more of a " flavour" to add to her milk drink every morning. I had even forgotten that it was a soy based supplement.
I have used various milks - never juices - as the liquid with which to blend reliv. So soy milk, A2 milk ( an Australian based milk product which purports to have the casein from cows milk taken out of it) and , for the last 12 months or so, oat milk. ( since reading about the dangers now associated with soy)

I give my daughter fresh produce daily - and try to avoid processed foods as often as possible. Navigating the minefield of additives thrown at you from every corner of the supermarket is hard and has been a long and involved learning curve for me. Harder now is the fact that my eyesight has just started its downhill slope so I have to take out glasses every time I read an ingredients listing!
Funnily enough in Australia the ingredients listings are controlled by ANZFA - and I have many friends in the food industry who have never been questioned about their products. The government here is too busy chasing up restaurants who have been not following health codes with preparation etc. Our massive explosion in obesity in the Australian population however, has finally caused some fantastic exposure and warnings about our diets which is , in turn, causing the government and the supermarket giants ( of which there are 2 ) to sit up and finally take notice of offering the consumer some healthier alternatives. ( I have always loved my regular visits to Wholefoods in your country and crave for one to open here in Adelaide . )
So you can see that I take a more than active interest in what we survive on as a human species in the world!
So it was with great fear that I recently had my daughter diagnosed with no more than 4 crowns, and 4 fillings which have to be fitted into her little mouth on her baby teeth. You can imagine the shock to learn this when I have been fastidious with her teeth cleaning and regular yearly visits to the dentist since her first tooth came through.
I do not give my daughter sugar in any form - apart from the small amounts found in yoghurt, bread , ( whole grain ) , and the naturally occurring forms in her fruit. So why this bad reaction ? We have ample amounts of fluoride in the drinking water here and I have never given my daughter bottled or filtered water.
So then I re read the back of the reliv tin -
Contains Maltodextrin, sodium chloride, fructose and sucrose.
I rang the Australian hotline when my mother first purchased reliv for my daughter and questioned them at length about the ingredients. Of particular interest to me was the calcium supplement ( as I had decided to take my daughter off cows milk ) , the iodine supplements and the all of the vitamin supplements.

My daughter has been complaining of itchy eyes for the last year.
My daughter has been complaining of bloating for the last year.
My daughter has been complaining of sore joints for the last few months.
My daughter has been unduly tired and cranky on a regular basis.
I have taken her to an eye specialist - nothing wrong.
I have had her blood checked - nothing wrong.

I will be taking her of Reliv after reading this post - too many familiar symptoms here for my liking. Is her tooth decay directly linked to reliv? Who knows as the manufacturers wont get back to me with the amounts of fructose and sucrose in their product. I am just kicking myself now that I didn't think of taking her off it ages ago.

Any other readers out there who have had reactions from their children ?

Julie Ann

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the information. I have just been approached by a "friend" who is selling Reliv. He made incredible claims. Offered "information" but when I called him on it, I got commercial messages and told that the testimonials are all positive, and unless I was a food scientist, or a doctor I wouldn't "understand" what or how it worked. So now I'm on line.................and so glad I passed.

Anonymous said...

Hi..I have a friend that reached out to me becaues I have many health issues. She is selling Reliv and she is concerned about my health. I have health problems, including allergies to everything that grows outside, many foods, including soy, Sjogren's, Fibromyalgia, Thyroid problems etc. I talk to one of her upline people who told me that if I take the LunaRichX and the shake twice a day, my allergies will go away, and my other health issues as well. So, I bought into the Reliv deal, but stayed at a low amount and paid a lot more than I would have liked. Oh, I had to become a distributor to get the discount. So, I was excited to take my first does of LunaRichX and my shake containing Classic Now, Engergize, Fibrestore, and another one called, Provantage. It took 35 minutes when all of a sudden, I started to have itching in my chest, and it crawled all the way up my neck to my throat, then to my ears. I starting downing Benadrly to offset the allergic attack. I was scared and do have an eppie pen for emergency's. I was lucky, the Benedrly shut down the reaction, however, I had to take it all day long because it would start to come back. The following day, I was itching all over my body. After two days, the allergic effects left me. Now, they keep calling me and telling me I started too fast and need to start at a lower dose. I keep telling them, I don't think that will happen, but they keep insisting. I will call these people, nice bullies. They are not doctors and I was up front about my allergies and how bad they are. On the other end, my husband decided not to waste my good product and he is using it. He has no allergies, but has Chrohns Diesease which is in remission. He has been on it for a few weeks, but does not feel any different. I was told it can take up to 3 months. However, I am afraid that he is taking it because I have no idea what is going on inside of him and he has had 3 major surgeries. I am trying to talk him out of taking it and just tossing the stuff out in the trash. I would rather be safe than sorry. I hope I don't have to get out of being a distributor. I just figured if I didn't re-order, I was done. I better look into that. Thank you for the blog.

Anonymous said...

I have always stayed away from Reliv, mainly because of their ads on the Christian radio station in town that does one commercial after another of products that they themselves "highly endorse." Fortunately we have some commercial free Christian alternatives here so that I don't very often have to hear any of that...but that was my first exposure to Reliv. There was also a big distributor in our former church who just didn't want to take no for answer. One evening she called me with her upline wanting to tell me all about the product and the opportunity... I couldn't believe she was so pushy, and politely but firmly as possible I let them know I wasn't interested. Another family friend is also in the business and is wanting us to try one of the products for my husband has been in the hospital now for weeks with a bad viral infection. She also has an upline she wants me to talk to. I found your site just out of curiosity because my gut, once again, recoils at this tactic...I'm sure she is well meaning and I know she believes in the products but I just don't like the company, and now I have more to go on when it comes to the products. Thanks for posting this information.

Diane said...

Julie Ann, it's been a few months since you posted, but I see there's no direct answer to your questions. I recently looked into Reliv after hearing all the amazing stories on radio spots, but I have to say I'm shocked to find out it's not much more than soy and isolated vitamins. I was expecting a "whole food supplement" at least...because there are so many great options out there now. As someone with years of experience studying and using nutrition for my own health, I am extremely unimpressed by the ingredient list. I can't understand all the great stories, unless the people helped by Reliv were doing absolutely nothing for their health before!

You have obviously been doing your very best for your daughter, but as with most of us, you've been a victim of misinformation. Now you're finding out about the problems with soy--and googling "dangers of soy" will turn up plenty more good information. Your next search should be "dangers of fluoride," because all we've been told by the authorities is extremely suspect at this point, and in my opinion, completely false. As usual, someone had something to sell (in this case, industrial toxic waste) and got access to enough corrupt officials to find a way to make money for themselves with no regard for public health. The toxic waste is now added to drinking water and promoted as essential for dental health. It makes me sick to think how many people have been harmed by this practice.


It seems to me even possible that your daughter's joint pain might be related to fluoride exposure...although there are many other things it could be.

Good luck getting to the bottom of all this! You can find the truth if you are determined. =)

My main concern regarding fluoride has to do with its effect on the thyroid gland. You'll find all that when you search.

Anonymous said...

Reliv IS A SCAM!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Julie Ann,
My husband died taking Reliv. Do Not Consume Reliv!!!

Anonymous said...


I love the last one.
Did Reliv get a jail sentence.

Anonymous said...

I don't realise that bad? i glad i came across your website as i was introduced to this recent.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for all the useful information on this blog.
Keep up the great work of informing the people who really want to know.

Anonymous said...

I was a Reliv Master Distributor in 1990. I do not know what has happened to the company or the products since. At that time Reliv sold only Now, Classic and Energize, and had just introduced "desert" energy bars. I think the bars may have been a first step into snake oil. Maybe the second. I drank a lot of Energize and didn't "get results."

Dr. Ted Kologras was still alive and very much a part of the company. I think his was a very ethical, stabilizing influence on Bob Montgomery, who founded the MLM Reliv around Kilogras' formulas and in my opinion then and now a very loose attachment to ethics.

HOWEVER Now and especially Classic had a stunningly obvious, palpable positive effect on my energy level and general health. I didn't have an diseases to cure but for whatever reason(s) my energy level was quite low; using Classic it became quite high.

At the same time my girlfriend at the time had to have grass allergy shots every ten days. It fell to me to give them to her after she and I became an item. A written record was kept. Now didn't seem to do her any good. After a month or two using Classic, however, we noticed, and the written record showed, that she wasn't requiring the shots every ten days. The intervals between the last one an needing the next stretched out to 30 days before she and I parted company. She told me later that she had been able to stop taking the shots altogether.

Eventually I soured on the hype of the business end of Reliv and my inability to develop a downline and make an income, and I quit using it, probably about 1992 or 1993.

Now, October 2014, again very low on energy (old age and inactivity), I found this site because I intend to start using Classic again.

Cure cancer? CFS? Cromes? Flat feet? Buck teeth? Not likely.

I think a very honest, very effective, and very safe product (Now and Classic, at least, contained nothing that can't be bought in the fresh foods sections of your supermarket) was given and is still smeared by greed, lies, uncontrolled and probably encouraged crazy-wild claims of independent distributors, and hysterical hype in general.
BJS/ Pensacola FL

The_Reliv_Watchdog said...


Thank you for your comment, normally I don't post anything that comes close to being pro Reliv but your honesty is something I can appreciate.

Anonymous said...

I thought all should be aware of two dangerous ingredients in Reliv:
Carrageenan and Hexathane Soy:
I too was caught up in the Reliv craze scam. I was so sick at the time I started Reliv. I was diagnosed with inflammatory bowel disease, on a cancer watch list for almost 4 yrs, I was so sick, the innergize was all I could stomach. My distributor had a good heart and just wanted to make a living off the product; always struggling to make money. I used innergize and classic only. I was not able to afford more as I had failing health and children to support. Not willing to max out a credit card, I withstood the pressures of becoming a full distributor, however, I did receive a 25% discount. Not quite breaking even after shipping costs and taxes. It's a very expensive for a product that uses cheap manufactured chemical vitamins. I never got better using Reliv, I just maintained my illness to the point I could get up and work.
CARRAGEENAN: While researching inflammation I uncovered this research conducted on an ingredient found in some Relive products:
http://www.cornucopia.org/DrTobacmanComment_toNOSB.pdf Thanks to carrageenan, we now have our anti-inflammatory drugs, as it was used in the 1960's on lab animals to induce inflammation for testing purposes: read on...
Carrageenan is dangerous and is found in most natural foods as a "stabilizer" keeping liquids thick, it's in Reliv NOW, and several other Reliv formulas but it is not listed on the classic label, however, I found it listed on a "Classic" label I found online, carrageenan was listed but don't know what that is about. I contacted Reliv but never heard back. Nonetheless, I started reading labels (especially at Trader Joes) and cut out carrageenan laced products. Within two weeks, my horrible symptoms went away. I told my Dr. He became upset that I diagnosed myself, even though my inflammation turned from "acute" to microscopic within two months.
SOY: unless it is labeled Organic, it's probably cheaply processed with Hexathane: What is Hexathane you ask? Hexane is a byproduct of gasoline refining. It is a neurotoxin and a hazardous air pollutant. Soybean processors use it as a solvent—a cheap and efficient way of extracting oil from soybeans, a necessary step to making most conventional soy oil and protein ingredients. Whole soybeans are literally bathed in hexane to separate the soybeans’ oil from protein. Can a consumer get an answer from Reliv that their soy is not processes this way? Haha! I highly doubt it. Soy can be non-GMO, as Reliv had the "non GMO Soy" on its label but I would bet they use this cheap method of processing their soy in NOW and other products. BUT it is no longer an organic product. A food product can no longer be labeled "Organic" if it contains the dangerous Hexathane chemical! This is a big red flag that a company can claim non GMO status on a product but not Organic.

Andy said...

Just witnessed my co-worker die of stomach/liver cancer, he had been taking Relive for years. I also had been taking it for about a year when I developed esophagus rings and swallowing problems. Better be careful, I am wondering who else?

Anonymous said...

I looked long and hard at the Reliv business and I really wanted it to be viable....but sadly it is NOT. Reliv claims to have a magical patented form of Soy called Luna Soy or Lunisin. There is no proof of any of their claims. And their claims are absolutely outrageous. They claim Reliv is a cure for every disease known to mankind. The product itself is a fairly high quality soy based drink mix with very low amounts of vitamin, herb, and mineral supplements. It's way over-priced.

Your Reliv rep needs to recruit you into the business to keep his/her business afloat. 99% of Reliv reps fail. The average rep sells a few cans of Reliv to their family and friends who quickly tire of paying $60 a can for the product. After the family and friend stop buying, the rep gives up and quits. Would you buy a $60 can of Soy from someone who appraoched you up at a gas station? The whole thing is ridiculous.

If you get into Reliv, they're going to make you buy a ton of product up-front, and your just going to end up consuming most of it yourself. The reason they make you buy so much upfront is because they know this will probably be your only purchase - the first one. You're not going to be able to sell it to strangers. It's too over-priced and the margins are horrible for the rep, although they're fantastic for the company.