Revolution: The official end of the snake-oil sales era

No kidding. A manufacturer, Medical Research Institute, which makes health and strength supplements, invested in proving that its nitric-oxide-enriched product works. The company created and funded a study to prove that its NO2 product, sold in GNC stores around the country, actually did what it’s claimed to do: enhance strength and endurance for exercise enthusiasts who use it.

This article about the Baylor University study of how NO2, the MRI nutritional supplement, increases strength at the bench press by nearly 350% over a placebo. Read the article for more startling findings.

The point is that MRI is setting a precedent: shifting the burden of proof of effectiveness from the consumer’s hands into its own. The supplements and other industries will never be the same again. Makers will now all be challenged to design studies that support their claims–or run the risk of losing consumers’ confidence–and their dollars.

This move creates a bit of an Alice-in-Wonderland rabbit hole. Will it significantly change the way consumers behave? For some, certainly the answer is yes. But the truth is, we humans are so passionately in pursuit of easy answers that many of us will simply let the “proof” part slip by and continue purchasing products that make bold claims and promise dramatic solutions we can achieve without working too hard.