BBB National Programs Archive

NAD Examines Advertising for Natrol”s Biosil

New York, NY – Oct. 21, 2008 – The National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus has determined that Natrol, Inc., has provided reasonable support for certain advertising claims made for the company’s BioSil dietary supplement.  NAD has recommended the company modify or discontinue certain claims.

NAD, the advertising industry’s self-regulatory forum, examined advertising for BioSil pursuant to NAD’s ongoing monitoring of advertising in the dietary supplements marketplace and in conjunction with an initiative with the Council for Responsible Nutrition.

At the outset, NAD requested Natrol provide substantiation for claims that included:

  • Nourish your body’s ‘3 Beauty Proteins’ Naturally!”
  • “BioSil, with patented ch-OSA, helps turn on the cells in your body that generate all three health and beauty proteins. Naturally.”
  • “That’s why BioSil is clinically proven to give you a more youthful look in just 20 short weeks.”
  • “Reduces Fine Lines and Wrinkles by 19%.”
  • “Creates Thicker, Stronger, Hair.”
  • “Provides Stronger, More Break Resistant Nails.”
  • “Promotes Healthy Bones and Joints.”
  • “Safe. Natural. Effective.”    

The advertiser explained that BioSil is a dietary supplement designed to promote the health of skin, hair, nails, and bones in women. The BioSil products are mono-preparations of choline-stabilized orthosilicic acid. Choline is an essential nutrient for normal cell function; orthosilicic acid is the form of the trace mineral silicon found in blood serum.

NAD examined evidence presented by the advertiser, including the results of three double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trials, and determined that the advertiser could reasonably support the claims “Nourish your body’s ‘3 Beauty Proteins’ Naturally!” and “BioSil, with patented ch-OSA, helps turn on the cells in your body that generate all three health and beauty proteins. Naturally.”

NAD recommended, however, that the advertiser discontinue unqualified quantified claim that BioSil “Reduces Fine Lines and Wrinkles by 19%,” but recognized that Natrol can continue to make certain claims about the results of its studies, as long as it is made clear in the advertising exactly what those results were.

Similarly, absent specific clinical evidence that BioSil is “clinically proven to give a more youthful look” in 20 weeks, NAD recommended that the advertiser discontinue the claim. NAD noted that Natrol is free to discuss how BioSil resulted in improved microrelief measurements and improved viscoelasticity and such microrelief can develop over time into deeper and more visible wrinkles.

NAD found the advertiser provided adequate support for the non-quantified claims that BioSil “Creates Thicker, Stronger, Hair,” “Provides Stronger, More Break Resistant Nails,” and “Promotes Healthy Bones and Joints.”

Further, NAD found that the results of the advertiser’s studies showed that BioSil is, in fact, “safe” and “effective.” Regarding the claim, “natural,” the advertiser represented that this claim was included in error because the key ingredient in BioSil is synthetic. That claim has been modified to state “naturally,” rather than “natural.” NAD found adequate support for the modified claim.

The company, in its advertiser’s statement, said “respectfully disagrees with the decision that certain claims are too broad.”

“Nonetheless, as a proponent of self-regulation, Natrol voluntarily accepts the NAD’s recommendations and will modify future advertising to be consistent with the recommendations and guidance provided by the NAD’s Final Case Decision.”