The Better Business Bureau of Minnesota and North Dakota (BBB) is issuing an alert on American Anti-Aging Society Inc. (AAASI), a company which sells, via their website, products that allegedly contain anti-aging properties. AAASI advertises that it has developed “clinically-proven, all natural supplements” which can “slow - or even reverse - the aging process.” In July, the BBB challenged those claims. Though the company provided a response, they failed to provide any substantiation for its advertising claims, leading to an “F” rating.
“The claims the company makes on their website are very easy to make,” said Dana Badgerow, president and CEO of the BBB of Minnesota and North Dakota. “However, their failure to substantiate those claims and their lack of response to customer complaints we’ve forwarded to their attention is troubling, indeed.”
In the past four months, consumers have filed seven complaints against AAASI through the BBB. Complainants allege they did not receive products they had purchased. The company has not responded to any of those customer complaints.
In challenging the advertising of the American Anti-Aging Society earlier this summer, the BBB asked the company for documentation of the clinical studies, research and scientists they reference on their website and in their marketing materials. The BBB also asked AAASI to prove: the benefits of its products are true; it can use other companies’ logos; and whether its testimonials are up to FTC standards. AAASI sent the BBB a formal reply a month later, but did not provide any of the requested documentation or evidence for its advertised claims. AAASI did not respond when asked a second time to provide documentation.
Often, companies who claim they can reverse the aging process lack evidence and documentation for their claims. Instead, these companies rely heavily on testimonials, history, or refer to scientists who supposedly stand behind their product, yet they do not provide names of these scientists or share documentation of their supposed research.
The BBB provides the following tips for assessing anti-aging supplement claims:
· Investigate companies at bbb.org.
· Research the doctors who are endorsing the product. Do they have a license? Are they practicing physicians?
· Be realistic. Since the days of Ponce de Leon, people have been searching for a “Fountain of Youth.” However, no one has unlocked the secret yet. Remember that exercise, adequate sleep, and healthy eating habits are the safest way to maintain good health.
· Talk with your physician before taking any supplement. They can give you better insight on any possible benefits and risks, and they will also know if the supplement will counteract any medications you are taking.