Ask your doctor before popping that ‘cognitive enhancement’ supplement pill
By Bridget Small
When I was young, I wanted the shoes that would make me run faster and jump higher. Now, I wish my brain would run a little faster when I can’t remember my account passwords. Unfortunately, some shady outfits have been trying to “help” people like me by making some mind-blowing claims to sell their dietary supplements.
The FTC just settled charges against four people and a dozen businesses that sold bottles of “cognitive enhancement” supplements through a collection of websites, including fake news websites. The FTC says the defendants falsely claimed Geniux, Xcel, EVO, and Ion-Z could increase users’ focus, concentration, IQ, and brainpower. The settlement bans them from making false or unsupported health claims and requires them to pay over $600,000.
According to the FTC, the defendants didn’t have proof that Geniux can increase concentration by 312 percent, boost brainpower by up to 89.2 percent, and enhance memory recall. They made these claims on websites designed to look like real news sites and featuring false claims that Bill Gates, Elon Musk and Stephen Hawking got dramatic results from Geniux. The FTC also says that customers — who paid up to $57 per bottle — couldn’t get a promised 100% money back guarantee.
If you’re considering a dietary supplement, remember: the government doesn’t review or evaluate supplements for safety or effectiveness before they’re put on the market. Your health care professional is the most important person to ask whether a supplement is safe for you. Even a natural supplement can be risky depending on your health and the medicine you take. If you see an ad with claims about miracle cures, ask a professional about the science behind the claims. If you think a product is being advertised falsely, please tell the FTC at FTC.gov/Complaint.