“Free” is rarely free.
This comes seven months after receiving an FDA warning letter citing unapproved drug treatment claims.
“The coronavirus, should we worry about it [unintelligible] up our dosage of Balance of Nature, your advice on that please?” Joe Piscopo asked Balance of Nature Founder Dr. Douglas Howard during a recent segment of his morning radio show that a reader tipped us to.
“It’s a cold virus … build your immune system, that’s all you can do … and your body will build its own immunity to it,” Howard responded.
What does Howard do to boost his own immune system? In addition to keeping active and avoiding “any difficulties in relationships,” he takes Balance of Nature.
This is a bold statement from a man who just seven months ago received an FDA warning letter citing “serious violations” of the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act, including unapproved drug treatment claims. Then again, the segment was billed on Twitter (in a tweet that has since been taken down) as a discussion on “preventing Coronavirus” with Howard and his son, Lex Howard, the CEO of Balance of Nature. So it would be strange if the company’s products weren’t mentioned.
The truth is Howard has been claiming for years that Balance of Nature, which is purportedly packed with more than 30 fruits and vegetables, fights disease. In response to the FDA warning letter, Balance of Nature removed from its YouTube channel several videos containing glowing testimonials from multiple sclerosis patients, including two videos specifically called out by the FDA. Problematic video testimonials, however, persist on the Balance of Nature website. In one such video, recorded when Howard only had a few gray hairs, the doctor says (at 4:37):
Balance of Nature, these phytonutrients, are simply fruits and vegetables and every one of us need them. The simple truth is fruits and vegetables will prevent and, in some cases, cure many of the lifestyle diseases [such as heart disease and obesity].
Earlier in the video, a multiple sclerosis patient says Balance of Nature gave her “a new life.”
A return guest (and sponsor)
This is not the first time Howard has promoted Balance of Nature on the Joe Piscopo Show on AM 970 The Answer in New York City. As recently as last July, Howard sat down with Piscopo, a former SNL cast member best known for his impersonation of music legend Frank Sinatra. Piscopo, a thyroid cancer survivor, began the interview by thanking Howard for some medical advice.
“The dosage [of Balance of Nature] that you gave me, doctor, works miraculously, miraculously,” Piscopo said. “Remember you said to double up? I guess it was because you said I had the cancer.”
But the best was yet to come.
Piscopo ended the July 2019 segment directing listeners to balanceofnature.com — but not without a promo code to purchase the product.
Remember, readers, marketing supplements as having the ability to treat, cure, alleviate the symptoms of, or prevent developing diseases and disorders is simply not permitted by law. If a supplement really could do all that, then it would be a drug subject to rigorous study and testing to gain FDA approval. Speaking of which, as of this writing, the FDA has yet to approve any vaccine, drug or investigational product to treat or prevent the coronavirus.
TINA.org reached out to Balance of Nature for comment. Check back for updates.
Find more of our coverage on coronavirus scams here.
This ad alert was updated 4/6/20.