The Plexus Scam- The Pink Nightmare

By | February 20, 2017

Plexus Scam

“You can have confidence in the quality of our products, the commitment to our Ambassadors, and the support we will provide to help you succeed.” – PlexusWorldwide.com

What Is Plexus Worldwide?

Plexus Worldwide is a very popular weight loss, wellness and personal care network marketing company based out of Scottsdale, Arizona. The hierarchy is seven levels deep starting with ambassador and ending with diamond ambassador. 

To become a distributor for the company, you must pay an annual membership fee of $34.95 and purchase a $99 or $199 product package. You then have to accumulate 100 personal volume (PV) points every month to remain a qualified ambassador.

Potential recruits are pitched the benefits of becoming a Plexus Worldwide distributor including the low risk and start-up costs, potential to make life changing income, flexibility of having your own business and how great network marketing is.

A Little Plexus History

Plexus started in 2005 solely as a breast health company with just two or three products. Their breast health kit was featured on The Doctors show.

When Slim was introduced in 2009, it changed the company and it’s now their core product. It was mainly targeted to type 2 diabetics to keep their blood sugar, cholesterol and lipids under control. They then discovered that the product also helps people control binge eating resulting in weight loss by burning fat and not muscle. They claimed that no caffeine or stimulants are found in the product and that it’s all natural green plants, processed naturally, sweetened with stevia and the sweet flavor of pomegranate and cherry. However, it’s not a meal replacement.

The company was launched in 2011 by Tarl Robinson (CEO), Alfred Pettersen (International President) and Alec Clark (Chief Marketing Officer).

Plexus sales skyrocketed in 2011, 2012, and up to November of 2013 due to the impressive combination of Plexus Slim and Accelerator. The two delivered awesome results to customers; however, that all changed when oxypregnane steroidal glycoside (Hoodia) – the key ingredient that controls appetite was suddenly removed.

It was later investigated by the FDA in 2013 that the popular pink drink has always contained DMAA- dangerous 1,3-dimethylamylamine and Plexus Worldwide was told to change the product.

Plexus Banned In Australia, New Zealand and Canada

Plexus was banned in Australia, New Zealand and Canada. This is just one safety advisory from the Therapeutic Goods Administration.

“16 July 2013

Plexus Slim Accelerator capsules and Plexus Slim Accelerator 3 Day Trial pack pose a serious risk to your health and should not be taken.

The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA)… found that:

  • They contain the undeclared banned chemical 1,3-dimethylamylamine (DMAA)
  • DMAA is listed in Appendix C of the Standard for the Uniform Scheduling of Medicines and Poisons (SUSMP). Substances within Appendix C are of such danger to health as to warrant prohibition of sale, supply and use
  • Risks…include high blood pressure, psychiatric disorders, bleeding in the brain and stroke”.-tga.gov

Banned By Amazon in Early 2014

After unbelievably negative reviews and the presence of the banned chemical dimethylamylamine, Amazon completely removed the product off their site and was on their prohibited list.

Under Scrutiny By The FDA

The Food and Drug Administration issued a warning letter to Plexus stating that three of their products were unsafe, ineffective, misbranded because they had inadequate directions for safety and illegally marketed as drugs. They told Plexus to quickly correct the violations.

“… The therapeutic claims on your website establish that your products are drugs because they are intended for use in the cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease…introducing or delivering these products for introduction into interstate commerce for such uses violates the Act.

Your Fast Relief, ProBio5 and BioCleanse are not generally recognized as safe and effective for the above referenced uses and, therefore, the products are “new drugs” … New drugs may not be legally introduced or delivered for introduction into interstate commerce without prior approval from FDA… on the basis of scientific data submitted by a drug sponsor to demonstrate that the drug is safe and effective.

Furthermore, your Fast Relief, ProBio5 and BioCleanse are offered for conditions that are not amenable to self-diagnosis and treatment by individuals who are not medical practitioners; therefore, adequate directions for use cannot be written so that a layperson can use these drugs safely for their intended purposes. Thus, these drugs are misbranded… in that their labeling fails to bear adequate directions for use. The introduction of a misbranded drug into interstate commerce is a violation …

The violations cited in this letter are not intended to be an all-inclusive list of violations that exist in connection with your products…”fda.gov

Deceptive Claims

Here is a list of some false and misleading claims made by Plexus.

  • When they claimed they were in partnership with the American Cancer Society, they were immediately told to stop using their name.
  • That their breast check kit was recommended by doctors and nurses, yet no names were mentioned on their website.
  • That their product was featured on The Doctor’s, but a spokesperson for the program told TINA.org that the audience are told that an appearance on the show “does not constitute a recommendation or an endorsement.”
  • That the kit has FDA approval, yet the disclaimer These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease” is scattered throughout their website.
  • They claim the product is clinically proven, but no references or additional information is provided nor can any information be found on general databases for published medical research, including PubMed and Google Scholar.

“When it comes to taking supplements for weight loss or anything else… You don’t really know what you’re getting… It will work for a little bit because when you’re taking it, you’re not eating as many calories. That’s usually part of the plan. It’s something that’s not sustainable. And the weight comes back and then everyone’s looking for the next product,” Dr. Besser said.

Since Plexus isn’t regulated by the FDA, they don’t have to prove anything to sell their products, but they failed to adhere to FDA guidelines according to government officials.

Dr. Besser said, “It’s a fine line that these companies walk and they many times step over that line and say this will treat colds, treat heart disease, boost your immune system. They can’t do that. They can’t say those things.”-  KATV.com

Plexus Complaints

“…I just want to tell you what my body felt and my real opinion and review of the product…we ate pretty bad from the move and trying to save money and time so eating the non-organic, icky processed foods was what we did…the website was crazy messed up. I … planned to get the tri pack… it wouldn’t let me, the only thing I could put in my cart was the bio cleanse… After the order went through I got an email with order conf number and that was it. I couldn’t see my account, all the website did was let me see what else I could buy. ..then the ambassador that I ordered from asked how it was going. I said I it wasn’t lol because I didn’t get the product. She said it was dropped in my mailbox on wed, I think it was Friday when she wrote me… so I called plexus. I was irritated because I couldn’t see what she could see and I HATE calling customer service for anything! … the CS rep informed me it was dropped off and that since I was an ambassador they would love to help me… Wait? What? I did NOT sign up to be an ambassador! … I said… take me off the ambassador list…so I was not going to be charged for within the next 30 days, and refund my money. She was polite, helped me and sent my money back. Well 3 days after all this, I got it in the mail…

This product was awful!!! I was in so much pain, not just my stomach, everywhere!! My stomach was bloated, I hurt everywhere, and it was not “cleaning” me out. I was more tired than after having Titus and keeping up with the other three kids the first few weeks. It was awful, I was exhausted (this was the worst part for me, being extremely fatigued) pained, and started getting numbness in my limbs. I got scared and didn’t even think the correlation was with this miracle product I was told about. I wasn’t warned, in fact I was told it would make me regular and help with energy! I didn’t want it for weight loss at all, just to help clean out my “toxins” and give me more energy/keep me regular. So anyways, I took them religiously for 5 days, it was ok the first day then the second day I was a little uncomfortable then the 3rd day was when it hit me hard! It was the worst feeling in the world then I realized maybe it’s the supplement?!?! I took it one more day felt worse and then the last day (day 5) I said enough is enough, I’m not taking it the next day. Sure enough, I felt a little better, well 3 days after stopping (today) was the first day I felt back to my old self again. It was scary I thought I was really bad deficient in a vitamin or was getting really sick. It was awful…!!!!

…Do we know if the organic materials they are using are what they are actually using in the products? I’m going to stick with what I know will always work and continue to work. Exercising and eating healthy balanced meals.”-K.H. bbb.org

“…Within a week after signing up as a Ambassador I received and tried my products and came very close to running to the hospital most likely from… Accelerator. That morning I drank a slim drink and took 2 capsules …. My heart-rate was over 140 I started to get really scared. I called the company and they said they do not know why this would happen and said I should ask a pharmacist to ask what was in the product that would cause my heart to be that high. If anyone takes this product please be careful. I have read several reviews … I am not the only one this has happened to. The next day I canceled my membership asked for a refund. It took almost a month to receive an email that the membership was canceled and I still have not received the membership fee returned.”-J.C. bbb.org

“… I never received any benefit from the products, although I heard from others that they did… I canceled the Ambassador membership and I was advised that I would receive a refund…in May and I had to call back a month later and they again told me that I would receive a refund. Now it is the end of July and I haven’t received a refund so I reached out again. They have transferred me several times on the phone, without even telling me they were transferring me. I asked to speak to someone who could refund the money to me and I was asked to hold and it’s now been over 19 minutes… Horrible customer service for an overpriced item. I would recommend staying away from this company.”-H.B. bbb.org

Plexus WorldWide Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • Low start up costs if comparing to starting a brick and mortar business
  • Supervisors make money for developing, retaining and managing their distributors and for their sales of the product.
  • The advice they give is decent. They ask you to eat clean, exercise and drink lots of water while taking Plexus products.

What Makes Plexus A Pyramid Scheme

  • According to FTC guidelines, Plexus is running more of a pyramid scheme rather than a legitimate MLM company. It can take several years for the FTC to shut a pyramid scheme down, giving the owners years to deceive and scam people.
  • According to the 2015 Plexus income disclosure statement, 96.88% of all ambassadors are making less than $5,000 per year with the majority of them making only $417.

Plexus Annual Ambassador Income

  • “The average annual commission made by Plexus Ambassadors (Ambassador–Diamond ranks) in 2015 was $1,885.99, and the median annual commission made by Plexus Ambassadors (Ambassador–Diamond ranks) in 2015 was $213.23.”Plexus Compensation Plan
  • You’re paying $1380 per year or $115 per month to stay qualified at the base level for overpriced, dangerous and chemical ridden products that have been banned in Australia and Canada.
  • There are several complaints in the BBB’s website of Plexus charging the credit cards and bank accounts for fees, unauthorized credit card charges and sale of products including of those that left the company.

Plexus BBB complaints

  • If you don’t qualify you get demoted.
  • They practically force you to supersize your order if you tell them that it’s not working. What happened with just needing the Slim and Accelerator?
  • Numerous people said that they gained weight after taking Plexus Accelerator.
  • Since anyone can be a Plexus Ambassador, you will be competing against everyone.

You don’t control your business. You lose everything if the FDA or the FTC shuts down Plexus. If they decide to increase the price of their products, you will have a harder time trying to sell. As an independent distributor,  you can get terminated like any employee.

Tired of Pyramid Schemes Like Plexus? Learn from Millionaire Marketers  that Care About Your Success-It’s Free!

Popular Plexus Products

Cost:

Plexus Slim (30 Day Supply) = $84.95

Plexus Accelerator+ (30 day supply) = $39.95

Plexus Slim and Accelerator+ combo (30 day supply) = $114.95/month

7 stick-packs of Plexus Slim + 7 capsules of Accelerator+ = $29.95

Bio Cleanse 180ct = $39.95

X Factor = $39.95

These chemical ridden products are costly because they have to pay their ambassadors.

Product Claims

Plexus Slim– weight loss shake with only 10 calories mainly consisting of chromium, green coffee bean and garcinia cambogia.

Accelerator- It speeds up your weight loss and helps boost your metabolism to increase your energy. It has all natural caffeine and not recommended for people with high blood pressure or heart conditions.

BioCleanse- oxygenates your blood and energizes your body. It detoxifies and cleanses the arteries and the gastrointestinal tract from the toxins that we breath, eat, spray and rub on. It also neutralizes the acidic conditions that promotes pathogens and enhances collagen production.

ProBio5-  A probiotic that kills candida that causes headaches, tiredness, and sleeplessness.

X Factor- A multivitamin with high quality aloe vera.

Chronic pain products

Plexus Ease Cream- a temporary instant relief from fibromyalgia and arthritic pain

Plexus Ease Capsules– works from the inside out to reduce knot and pain. Its main ingredient is from the green lip mussel founded in New Zealand that has lipernole derived from shellfish.

Plexus Nerve – reduces nerve discomfort.

Potentially Dangerous, Low Quality and Unproven Ingredients Found In Plexus Products

Lead Plexus deliberately exposed people to lead in Plexus Block, Fast Relief and P96! According to the Mayo Clinic, even a tiny amount of lead can cause health issues including stomach pain, fatigue, vomiting and irritability. When poisonous and toxic metal lead builds up in the body, it leads to lead poisoning which is a serious and sometimes fatal condition. Even though it’s treated with chelation therapy and EDTA, the damage can’t be reversed.

Chlorogenic acid/green coffee bean extract-  Several controlled trials in humans show that green coffee bean extract can lead to significant weight loss; however, these studies were small and some of them were industry sponsored.

Since it isn’t scientifically proven to help people lose weight, the FTC fined Applied Food Sciences, Pure Green Coffee, and Lindsey Duncan for making deceptive claims.  

Companies were also marketing with deceitful websites that resembled legitimate news sites and popular health magazines.

Dr. Oz was still defending his endorsement when he appeared before the Congressional Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety and Insurance to explain why his popular show evolved into an infomercial for questionable products.

“Senator McCaskill stated that the ‘scientific community is almost monolithic against you in terms of the efficacy of the three products that you call miracles’.”- Wikipedia

Since green coffee contains caffeine, it’s not safe for women that are pregnant or breastfeeding. It also has high levels of homocysteine, make anxiety; bleeding disorders and diarrhea worse, change blood sugar levels, and increase blood pressure. Also, if you have osteoporosis, you shouldn’t take more than 300 mg of caffeine per day. Exactly how much chlorogenic acid and caffeine is found in Plexus is unknown.

“ Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.”- WebMD

Garcinia Cambogia (Citrin K) Most studies reveal that it is not at all effective in terms of overall weight loss nor in terms of any of its other claims.

“But actual weight loss results aren’t impressive. A review published in the Journal of Obesity found that people who took garcinia cambogia in studies lost about 2 pounds more than people who didn’t take it.”

They didn’t even know if their weight loss was because of the supplement or from the lower-calorie diet and exercise programs. – WebMD

Garcinia cambogia can help control your blood sugar and lower LDL (bad) cholesterol and raise HDL (good) cholesterol, but you shouldn’t take it with your medication.

Higenamine– a stimulant that’s been linked to harmful side effects. There’s also insufficient evidence that it helps with weight loss

“Higenamine is POSSIBLY UNSAFE when taken by mouth. The purified or extracted chemical higenamine has not been studied in people. Therefore, its safety is not clear. However, higenamine is one of the main chemicals in a plant called aconite. Aconite has been shown to cause serious heart-related side effects including arrhythmias and even death. These side effects from aconite ingestions may, in part, be caused by the higenamine chemical.”WebMd

Hordenine- another dangerous stimulant that has been shown to cause increased blood pressure and negatively affects the cardiovascular, respiratory and nervous systems.

Chromium– Plexus Slim also contains higher levels of chromium than ever before. Since chromium lowers the blood sugar and decreases energy levels, it poses a threat to your health in the long term. It has also been found ineffective at lowering blood sugar in some studies.

Natural Flavors- Food chemists and companies can add anything they want in their products that are supposedly safe including excitotoxins like MSG which cause your taste buds to keep craving more food. Excitotoxins can cause alzheimer’s, parkinson’s disease, obesity, migraines, fatigue and depression.

Silicon Dioxide– Also known as silica, it’s an additive used as an anticaking agent not exceeding more than 2% of the foods weight to be considered safe. Since it’s not occurring naturally, it is of concern. According to CNN.com, heavy exposure to silica linked to a number of deaths related to respiratory diseases, lung cancer, cardiovascular and immune diseases. While most substances are not harmful to your body, they change your body’s alkalinity, making you more acidic and unable to fight disease, repair cells, and remove free radicals/toxins more effectively.

Folic Acid- a synthetic that has been linked to cancer.

“Indeed, many scientists have grown increasingly concerned about mounting research — including a study published last winter in the Journal of the American Medical Association — suggesting that all the extra folic acid might increase your odds of developing cancer…The more we learn about folic acid, the more it’s clear that giving it to everyone has very real risks,” says folic acid researcher David Smith, PhD, a professor of pharmacology at the University of Oxford in England.

“…If there’s a nutrient it’s easy to overdose on, it’s folic acid. The vitamin is all around us, slipped into the cereal we eat for breakfast, the bread we eat for lunch, the energy bars we snack on, and the supplements that over one-third of us take regularly.”NBC news  

Women are supposed to get 400 mcg a day, the amount that protects fetuses.

Plexus accelerator plus folic acid

Alpha Lipoic Acid- According to WebMd, research suggests that taking 1800 mg of alpha-lipoic acid daily for 20 weeks reduces body weight in people who are overweight.

Alpha lipoic acid is found in the Plexus Slim blend; however, the blend is only 530 mg with green coffee extract and garcinia cambogia making up the majority of it since they are listed first.

Plexus Slim Blend Ingredients Alpha Lipoic Acid

Luo Han Go (Lo Han Extract) a sweetener that Plexus doesn’t state what extract of  Lo Han they use.

Stevia- a commercial sweetener. It’s very common in sugar replacement pills.

Consuming highly refined stevia can lead to feelings of nausea, a false sensation of fullness, irritation in your stomach, bloating, decreased appetite, aching and sore muscles, and feeling of numbness and dizziness when standing up or moving.

“ It can also lead to an adverse reaction if it is consumed with certain medications. Ingesting stevia and lithium is not recommended as stevia can cause your body to retain higher amounts of the drug. As well, stevia is not recommended if you are taking medication to treat diabetes. Some studies suggest that diabetes medication and stevia, when taken together, can cause hypoglycemia, a drop in blood sugar levels. In a similar way, research suggests stevia may cause a drop in blood pressure for people taking blood pressure medication. If you’re taking any of these medications, check with your healthcare provider before using stevia.”- LiveStrong

If you experience these symptoms only mildly, stop taking stevia, and speak with a doctor if the symptoms do not stop shortly.

Stevia is not recommended for women who are breastfeeding, as the sweetener is not currently approved for infant consumption.

Whey protein-The overview of their Plexus 96 chocolate states that it’s made from high quality protein and that it’s non gmo; however unlike Tera’s Simply Pure Organic Dark Chocolate Whey Protein their product has 20 grams of whey protein, it’s certified organic by MOSA, ethically sourced from family farms in Wisconsin, grass fed, rBGH/rBST Free, non gmo, kosher, and blended with fair trade certified dark chocolate.

Non organic whey protein comes from concentrated animal feeding operations where animals are not on pasture and cows are not eating their natural food grass, but instead eating corn and soy – two of the most highest genetically modified crops that cause infections and raises the omega-6 fatty acids while lowering the healthy omega-3 fatty acids (making the whey more inflammatory). More recently, farmers got caught feeding cows defective skittles!- Independent.co.uk

As if GMO corn isn’t bad enough, candy filled with GMOs, artificial colors, and sugar is even worse.

Maltodextrin- a processed food additive, usually derived from GMO corn or wheat and possible it’s not gluten-free. It has similar side effects and health risks as most food additives including allergic reactions, unexplained weight gain, bloating and flatulence.

Citric Acid- An additive derived from GMO (genetically modified organisms) that are formed when a gene from one species is moved to another, creating something inexistent to nature. They are bad for your body, the community, farmers and the environment. For eight reasons why GMO’s are bad for you, visit orgaicauthority.com.

PolydextroseA common type of soluble fiber that suppresses appetite, but it might cause severe gas and bloating.

Guar Gum- Also known to cause stomach issues like bloating and gas in people who have sensitive digestive systems

Soy Lecithin-  “The most important side effect is that if you have a serious soy allergy, you should avoid all products which contain it. Here are the main soy lecithin side effects to be aware of:

  1. Gastrointestinal problems like diarrhea
  2. Changes in weight (loss and gain)
  3. Loss of appetite
  4. Skin rashes
  5. Nausea, dizziness, vomiting and confusion
  6. Low blood pressure (which is just as dangerous as high blood pressure)
  7. Blurred vision and occasional fainting

Now, these side effects sound severe – and some of them are – but it is worth remembering that they are almost all as a result of pesticides and chemicals applied to many soy crops. If you choose a good source of soy lecithin, you should have no problem with any of these side effects.”- VitGuide

Omega 3- Plexus MegaX consists of plant based omega 3’s.

Plexus Mega X

 

DHA (Docosahexaenoic Acid) and EPA (Eicosapentaenoic Acid have been proved to treat and prevent cardiovascular disease, essential fatty acid deficiency in infancy (retinal and brain development), preventing premature delivery, cancer (breast, colon, and prostate), autoimmune disorders, crohn’s disease, mild hypertension, rheumatoid arthritis and parkinson’s disease- not ALA (Alpha-Linolenic Acid) which is what plant based omegas are rich in.

“ALA converts inside your body to DHA and EPA, but at such a low ratio as to be rendered virtually inconsequential. Less than 5% of ALA is transformed into EPA, and less than 0.5% into DHA! And consuming large amounts of ALA won’t make up for this low conversion ratio. Plant-based omega sources also require adequate levels of zinc, iron, and pyridoxine for conversion, and deficiency in one or more of these nutrients is common, especially among vegans/vegetarians.

Animal-based omegas, such as fish, fish oil, cod liver oil, and krill oil, however, contain copious amounts of DHA and EPA…no conversion required! Adding wild-caught, coldwater fish to your diet can help ensure omega-3 intake. You can also supplement with fish oil or krill oil. Krill oil has 48 times the antioxidant potency of fish oil, and also contains astaxanthin, an antioxidant that increases your body’s absorption of DHA and EPA.”-Underground Health Reporter

Removed Ingredients

Hoodia gordonii (oxypregnane steroidal glycoside)- Another miracle ingredient lacking scientific evidence that it’s effective in weight loss and has been found to have very serious adverse effects by Pfizer Pharmaceuticals and Unilever-  two clinical experts.

“ Goen Technologies Corporation’s TrimSpa unit began marketing it under the brand name X32 with celebrity spokesperson Anna Nicole Smith, though the FDA has notified Trimspa in a Warning Letter that it has not demonstrated that claims for their product are scientifically supportable…”- Wikipedia

It’s highly unlikely that it contains real hoodia because there’s a limited supply of hoodia and illegal to export it from Africa for weight loss supplements.

Grape Skin Extract- According to WebMd, grape skin extract is effective for poor circulation and eye stress, but it’s possible ineffective for weight loss and more evidence is needed for it to treat a wide variety of diseases including heart disease, high cholesterol and blood pressure and chronic fatigue syndrome.- WebMD

Plexus Products Dangerous and Unpleasant Side Effects

Get ready to not feel so slim or healthy while taking this weight loss supplement with its unpleasant side effects including liver damage, racing heart, chest pain, lethargy, severe constipation, excess gas, dehydration, nausea, heartburn, headaches, nervousness, shakiness, man boobs, dizziness.

Plexus At A Final Glance…

At the end of the day, Plexus might be here for now, but it’s built on selling false dreams to vulnerable hard working people who are solely looking to make a better life for their families. You can get cheaper products at small companies, herbal stores, and/or online. You don’t need their overpriced, dangerous and toxic products full of dangerous stimulants, appetite suppressants, mystery whey, potentially gmo soy, denature protein, inferior omega-3, synthetic folate and synthetic sweeteners. Weight loss comes naturally when you make eating healthy, drinking plenty of purified water and exercising a habit. Plexus is a product based pyramid scheme and nobody should waste their time, energy, or money into it because it’s not a sustainable company and could someday collapse and be shut down by the FTC.

Stay away from this company as a distributor and don’t consume their pink poison,

To Your Success,

Jennifer

 

 

 

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