Is MonaVie a Scam? If you’ve come here, you are probably looking to answer one question… is MonaVie a scam? Me and some friends have done extensive research over the last few years on this and I have to say that it is. Before you discount me as just some crazy person on the Internet, look at the evidence and make the logical conclusion for yourself. Below are just a few of the major points to consider before you put thousands of your dollars into buying MonaVie. However, if that still doesn’t convince you, I suggest you buy MonaVie on Ebay.
A MonaVie Distributor Told Me…
One of the first things you’ll learn when you look at MonaVie is that MonaVie distributors are paid to sell juice. Any consumer looking to buy any product, like this should question the motivation of the salesman.
There are lot of people commenting about MonaVie on the Internet. Some of the comments are openly posted by distributors and others may be giving you a line of “I am not a MonaVie distributor, but…” as a way to sound impartial or to get around the Guidelines the FTC gives about distributor testimonies. One claim that you might see is that MonaVie Original or Active gives a person energy. MonaVie Own Literature Proves That MonaVie Does Not Provide Energy.
This is one of the reasons why the wise consumer concludes MonaVie medical testimonies are pointless.
However if you do your research you’ll see how even distributors realize that MonaVie isn’t good juice and it’s hurting their reputation.
How a MonaVie Distributor May Mislead You
As mentioned above, you may read a lot of testimonies about MonaVie and what it might do for you. A MonaVie distributor trying to make a sale may try to make a number of misleading points.
- ORAC Scores – You may read about ORAC (short for Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity), a scientific test of designed to measure antioxidant capabilities of foods. MonaVie distributors like to tout the extremely high ORAC score in freeze-dried acai. However, freeze-dried acai ORAC scores are misleading. It has also been mathematically proven that MonaVie is less than 2% freeze-dried acai.
- Equal to Eating 13 Fruits? – Some distributors claim that 4oz. of MonaVie is equal to eating 13 fruits. They’ll claim that this actually represents a cost savings. However, MonaVie itself says drinking MonaVie is not equal to eating 13 fruits… it just has the ORAC score of some 13 fruits that MonaVie picked to serve their marketing purpose. In reality the USDA, FDA, and CDC say that 4 ounces of MonaVie is 1 serving of fruit… but warn people that “While 100% juice can count towards your intake, the majority of your choices should be whole or cut-up fruits (fresh, frozen, canned, or dried). These fruit choices are better options because they contain dietary fiber. Even in terms of ORAC score, you’d have to drink 9 ounces of MonaVie (at a retail cost of over $16) to match the ORAC of a single apple.
- Drinking MonaVie is better than eating fruit in most stores? – MonaVie distributors will paint a picture that there are a lot of pesticides in fruit that you buy in stores. We know that MonaVie is a substitute for eating fruit from the last bullet point. Also, MonaVie provides no vegetables, so a healthy person should get vegetables from somewhere else. If one is concerned about pesticides and other chemicals, one can always buy certified organic produce. It worth mentioning that MonaVie isn’t certified organic and hence is just as likely to contain pesticides as any other non-organic produce.
Whether the MonaVie distributor is intentionally trying to mislead you or if they just got bad information from the person above them is unimportant. MonaVie loves this method of distribution because it is a game Chinese Whispers (often known as The Telephone Game), the truth gets distorted and embellished as it passes down the line from distributor to distributor.
From time to time, MonaVie distributors will trumpet the words of paid MonaVie spokesmen Dr. Alexander Schauss or Dr. Paul Clayton. Sometimes you even hear them talk about MonaVie co-founder Dr. Ralph Carson and the CBS Radio show that violates FTC’s guidelines on testimonials.
While it may be a stretch to call Louis Niles a doctor (I can’t find mention of any educational background that would make him a doctor any more than Dr. Dre or Dr. Pepper), I’m willing to give a little benefit of the doubt. Noteworthy contributions to the MonaVie Community include Dr. Louis Niles’ Illegal Medicinal Claims. However, more distressing are Dr. Lou Niles and his Sexual Crimes including one involving a child. This is the man that many MonaVie Distributors applaud.
Distributors are not likely to mention unbiased and more reputable doctors opinions such as Dr. Andrew Weil (formally in Time Magazine’s top 25 Americans and top 100 people in the world). Dr. Dean Edell and Dr. Jonny Bowden have spoken out against MonaVie as well. You’ll also find that Dr. Joe Schwarcz warns against acai health claims in general.
Quality and Effectiveness of the MonaVie Juice
There are three clinical studies on MonaVie that I know of. I’m still in the process of breaking two of them down into layman’s terms. While, I’m working on those, here are the results from one of them: Men’s Journal proof that MonaVie lacks nutrition. You can read a very scientific one done by AIBMR study done by Dr. Alex Schauss, but again, I’ll break this down in a future date and tell you want you really need to know from it.
Some may still swear that MonaVie helps them despite the above proof shows MonaVie to be of little nutritional value. This reaction is scientifically explained by the placebo effect. It should be noted that MonaVie does not treat medical conditions and MonaVie knows it.
It’s worth noting that while distributors may suggest otherwise MonaVie uses EarthFruit’s Mid-Grade Acai (and Doesn’t Harvest or Freeze-Dry Their Own). It doesn’t appear that MonaVie’s acai is unique to their product in any way.
MonaVie Pulse and Lowering Cholesterol
MonaVie Pulse contains plant sterols which you may have heard is clinically shown to lower cholesterol. There are two things that MonaVie distributors won’t tell you about MonaVie Pulse. The first is that MonaVie Pulse is not very effective for lowering cholesterol as it has low amounts of plant sterols. The second is that when one compares MonaVie Pulse and Benecol Smart Chews in lowering cholesterol it turns out that Benecol delivers more plant stanols at 1/25th the price. It astounded me too when I did the math. A little later I compared MonaVie Pulse vs. CholestOff in Lowering Cholesterol, and found that CholestOff delivers even more plant sterols than MonaVie Pulse at 7 cents a pill. This makes CholestOff 1/88th the price of MonaVie Pulse. If you decide that plant sterols/stanols are right for you and your family , switching from MonaVie Pulse to other products will save your family thousands a year.
The Business of MonaVie
You may read a lot about how MonaVie is the Fastest Company to $1 Billion Dollars in Revenue. No company has audited them to verify that claim and they may be counting juice shipped to distributors and not actually sold. What we do know is that interest in MonaVie is fading.
MonaVie distributors may claim that MonaVie is a great business opportunity. They lie. In fact, 99.64% of people are LOSING money in MonaVie. MonaVie itself is embarrassed by their Income Disclosure Statement and shows it by trying to delete it from their Wikipedia page. Ex-MonaVie Distributor BobbyJ will show you the true value of MonaVie.
MonaVie distributors will claim that Inc. Magazine gave MonaVie a top ranking, but there are number of things that they aren’t telling you.
In the end, building a business based on MonaVie is not a sound idea. It’s just too likely that the FTC guidelines on distributor conduct lead to action and MonaVie gets put out of business like the illegal music swapping companies of the past.
Here’s a video detailing the ridiculousness of getting involved with Orrin Woodward and TEAM MonaVie:
And What About the Ethics of MonaVie?
Some people say that MonaVie is a great company who is making them and their friends healthy and wealthy. By now, you probably know that these are likely to be distributors or people affiliated with the company talking. The Better Business Bureau (BBB), perhaps the most well-known consumer protection organization, says that it doesn’t trust MonaVie. Read more about MonaVie’s D- Better Business Bureau Rating. If the BBB doesn’t trust MonaVie… why should you?
MonaVie has been caught in some clear lies in the past. For one it seems that MonaVie lies about the ORAC score of MonaVie. For another, their related charity, the MORE Project seems to be misusing it’s funds.
MonaVie promotes its juice as a cure for pain, even though it’s legally not allowed to make such a statement.
One of MonaVie’s top distributors, Emerald level, Mitch Biggs has committed a number of legal infractions. They range from Mitch Biggs Claims MonaVie Prevents Swine Flu and Mitch Biggs Claims MonaVie is Organic (and Other Lies) – neither are true. Mitch Biggs Scams People and MonaVie Condones It which says a lot about MonaVie.
MonaVie has been sent a cease and desist letter from Oprah for its illegal use of her image. Lastly, employees from the corporate headquarters calls bloggers “annoying douches” while trying to bully it’s critics with frivolous legal threats.
Who Are You to Talk about MonaVie?
I’m a concerned consumer advocate. It hurts me to see a family of four spend $5000 a year on juice that isn’t shown to provide the nutrition that it promises. In these economic times (or any economic times for that matter), we all should be careful about where we spend our money. MonaVie distributors may claim that I’m thinking negatively, but I’m really looking to help out the consumer. Of course, anyone who makes selling MonaVie more difficult for them is going to be viewed by them as a negative influence. MonaVie distributors may claim that I’m being closed-minded, but it is actually them who are not being open-minded about MonaVie by rejecting all the scientific evidence.
For more information about me, I encourage you to visit the MonaVie Scam About page.
Miscellaneous MonaVie Questions
Q: What about the Red Sox Endorsing MonaVie?
A: I’m a huge Red Sox fan, perhaps one of the biggest ones out there. However, it’s worth noting that MonaVie Endorser J.D. Drew Breaking MonaVie’s Terms of Service. Also for a drink that’s supposed to promote health, J.D. Drew seems to be one of the least healthy players in baseball.
Q: What about the Environmental Impact of MonaVie?
A: It turns out that shipping MonaVie’s acai around the world takes up fuel and adds to ones carbon footprint. Those concerned about the environment would be wise to consider locally grown fruits and vegetables from sources like farmer’s markets.
Common Ways a MonaVie Distributor May Mislead You
Shouldn’t you invest in and your family’s health?
Sure, see Should You Put a Price on Your Health? However, none of us have infinite amount of money. Are you going to try Vemma, Zrii, Agel and every other expensive juice scam? Given that MonaVie lacks nutrition it is a poor “investment.”
Don’t listen to the Dream Stealers and their Negativity
Whenever you hear the words “Dream Stealers” or “negativity” you can be pretty sure you are being scammed. Distributors of MLM schemes use these two terms quite often. They will say that this website spreads negativity. Well, bank robbers think the alarms and police are negative dream stealers too. Fortunately, we have them to protect our money.
This website has nothing to gain whether you decide to sell MonaVie or quit. The MonaVie Distributor in your upline desperately wants to keep you with MonaVie. Thus he/she wants to control the information you are receiving and block out the information that can be found on this website out.
“MonaVie is all-natural”
As George Carlin said,
“Everything is natural! Nature includes everything! It’s not just trees and flowers! It’s everything! A chemical company’s toxic waste is completely natural! It’s part of the nature! We’re all part of nature! Everything is natural!”
I would recommend reading this article about the natural snakes oils that exist today.
If MonaVie was an illegal pyramid scheme it would be outlawed by now.
This is a common theme all MLMs. As the FTC says, some MLM are illegal pyramid schemes. Also, it is worth noting that the FTC doesn’t have infinite power. This article explains that the FTC has to work “within a legal framework” with a limited budget. This means building an airtight case which takes years. Bernie Madoff managed an illegal pyramid for 17 years where people lost dozens of billions of dollars. Clearly this logic is flawed.
It can’t be a pyramid scheme. Pyramid schemes don’t sell products.
This is a common lie/misconception. Again the FTC is your guide, “Some schemes may purport to sell a product, but they often simply use the product to hide their pyramid structure.” The FTC also says, “Not all multilevel marketing plans are legitimate. Some are pyramid schemes. It’s best not to get involved in plans where the money you make is based primarily on the number of distributors you recruit and your sales to them, rather than on your sales to people outside the plan who intend to use the products.” Under this definition, MonaVie could be free from pyramid scheme allegations if it can show how much juice is being sold to be people not signing distributor contracts. MonaVie does not break out these numbers, and information from commenters on this site seems to indicate almost no product is going to people outside the business.