Good-for-nothing cognitive enhancers are really a dime-a-dozen these days, and even at first glance, Provasil fits nicely into this category. Nothing is really original about this "product", at a closer look: not even its name. A while ago I reviewed another scam supplement called Provacyl, a sort of anti-aging (or rather anti-money-saving) formula, the name of which does indeed bear an uncanny resemblance to Provasil's. What exactly does Provasil promise though? Promises are obviously cheap, so it can afford to deliver quite a litany in this regard…
As you can see, it lists just about everything someone looking for a good nootropic wants to hear...better focus, better memory, mental alertness etc. How much will all this set you back though if you decide to fall for the pitch and purchase the supplement? Unlike the promises it makes, Provasil doesn't come cheap: a single bottle of the formula will set you back $50. Of course, you can also opt for the $150 Extreme Value package (3 bottles of Provacil and some random product called Greepura tossed in) or the $250 Super Special (5 bottles of Provacil and some Greenpura), depending on how deeply you want to wade into this shindig.
The bottom line: you'll have to break open the piggybank, no matter which option you go with.
The Provasil Sales Pitch
Marketing-wise, Provasil doesn't stray off the beaten path, and that may actually be an understatement. It doesn't just recycle its name, it does the same with its website copy and design.
After all, why stop at a scam, when you can have three, four or even more...without having to redo the whole darn site? Note that I have already reviewed Phenocal and Virectin, together with a number of other similar products, exposing them all for the scams they are.
The Provasil sales copy follows the blueprint to the letter too: it uses the classic structure of posing a problem, offering a solution to it and then calling for action, before dropping an urgency-inducing twist, in the shape of a supposedly limited-time promotion.
Obviously, the offer that's "valid only today" was there a few days ago too, when I first dropped by to look into the scam.
The promotional effort starts off with a YouTube video, which tries to make a point through eloquent narration and some cartoony art. The like/dislike and comment options are obviously blocked on it, to prevent the public from offering any direct feedback. Needless to say, the video is not the least bit convincing.
No proper supplement scam would be complete without a stock picture or two dropped in for that added effect. In Provasil's case, we revisit the "doctor" in the white lab coat, who vouches that the statements made on the homepage do indeed hold water. He's a shutterstock model of course, whose pictures have been used to promote every supplement/medical scam on God's green earth, from sexual lubricants to insurance schemes.
Despite the efforts made on the homepage to convince the visitor that the product does indeed work, no one is willing to assume any responsibility in regards to the statements made there. In fact, the promoter seems keen on disclaiming everything on the Terms and Conditions page:
Further down the page, the team behind the operation makes sure to include a section through which Provasil buyers waive all rights to a class-action lawsuit - should it ever come to that. These guys have indeed covered themselves from every angle.
To top everything off, the Provasil site features a number of "success stories" from "people, just like you". I doubt the person who wrote that page was just like me though...I might be able to do a similar page of "success stories" in 30 minutes, I could be faster than him...or maybe it only took him 5 minutes…
Apparently, Provasil is pushed by some "company" called Pharmaxa Labs. The video posted at YouTube hints to Cognetix Labs. It really doesn't make any kind of a difference though, because neither of those two fictitious entities actually exist as supplement manufacturers, nor do any of them have an actual address.
Bottom line: I have no idea who makes this and where, and my enquiry in the matter has thus far gone unanswered.
What People Think
While blocking YouTube's comment section is a good precautionary solution to fending off unwanted (and sure-to-come) user feedback, Provasil is featured at Amazon too, and there, the community can't be handily muzzled. The feedback below speaks for itself really.
In addition to being clearly useless, Provasil may in fact come with some rather unpleasant side effects.
Some users have also complained that they are unable to ingest the supplement on account of its atrocious taste.
The Provasil Marketing Effort
As always, there's a mix of reviews populating the search results for "Provasil review" of which the ones that are decidedly positive are all linked up with affiliate links with the Provasil site. The more or less objective ones carry an additional baggage of abysmal user reviews/comments.
consumerhealthdigest.com, which ranks first for the above said keyword, is affiliated with the perpetrators of an impressive number of supplement scams, among them Provasil too.
The Provasil Ingredient Profile
Provasil is made up of quite a few ingredients, some of which are mere vitamins which can be had from different sources for much less.
With that in mind, there's not much point in talking about Vitamin C, Folic Acid, Vitamin B12 and Biotin.
Choline Bitartrate is the most generously dosed "actual" ingredient, at 150 mg. Its dosage is quite irrelevant in light of the fact though that it does absolutely nothing to improve cognitive function in any way.
L-Tyrosine may have something of a case regarding its benefits on cognitive function, but this study is talking about doses of 2g (2,000 mg). Here, we have 100 mg.
Another study delivers some proof in regards to the efficiency of Acetyl-L-Carnitine, in increasing the levels of neurotransmitters noradrenaline and serotonin, but it too talks about doses of 0.5g (500 mg) per kg of body weight, while in Provasil, we're looking at 100 mg.
Regarding the effects on cognitive function of Bacopa, there's a rat study out there, though the dosages aren't actually discussed in it.
According to this study the positive effects of Ginkgo Biloba extract (and not leaf) on brain function, at a dose of 80mg/day, were very modest at best.
Resveratrol is mostly recognized for its anti-inflammatory effects, through which it has been proven to fight brain-pathologies, such as strokes. Its effects on cognitive function have been studied as well, and it indeed seems to have a positive impact in this regard, according to this study. The dosage used was 75mg twice a day for a total of 150 mg. Provasil delivers some 25 mg of the compound.
It is obvious from the above that many of Provasil's ingredients do nothing to improve cognitive performance in any way. The ingredients that are scientifically proven to work, are grievously underdosed - as expected from a supplement which aims to cram as many "hype" ingredients into a capsule as possible. Provasil is a nootropic that costs quite a bit, while having very little to show for it in the way of actual results.