Will this finally be the cure to your joint pain? Or is Heal-N-Soothe a scam that is just going to get your hopes up for nothing... only to leave you with less money than when you started and the same joint pain?
If you look up reviews on Heal-N-Soothe you will find tons of positive testimonials all over Google, Youtube, etc... but the problem is that a lot of people are just promoting the product to make money selling it, which is why I decided to write my own review here.
In this review I'll be going over what exactly Heal-N-Soothe is, whether or not the ingredients will do anything, complaints, why I don't trust the company too much and more.
Enjoy & be sure to share this review if you find it helpful!
What Is Heal-N-Soothe?
- Product: Heal-N-Soothe
- Type: Joint pain supplement
- Company: LivingWell Nutraceuticals
- Cost: $59/bottle and they have a free trial
- Recommended?: Not Really
Heal-N-Soothe (I'll be referring to it as HNS at times) is a joint pain supplement by the company LivingWell Nutraceuticals the attacks joint pain from various angles with an array of natural herbs and proteolytic enzymes.
It's a fairly pricey supplement and the marketing behind it is a bit over-the-top, which is the reason many people are hesitant to purchase it.
While it does have potential to work, the main reason I'm not recommending this supplement to my readers is because the company is a bit on the 'shady' side, as you will see shortly.
How It Works
In the promotional material there was a video I watched on how Heal-N-Soothe works that talked about your body's immune response to infection and how inflammation is a key part of this--but when you are eating foods that have gluten your immune system is basically "on" all the time and never "shuts off".
They also tell us that this increased and continuous inflammation going on from the continuous immune response causes an overproduction of fibrin--and this then makes it harder for nutrients and oxygen to reach cells in need.
So in a nutshell, eating foods with gluten, which is a toxin, causes increased inflammation in the body and leads to lack of nutrients and oxygen getting to your cells, which causes joint pain among other problems.
The reason join pain isn't a problem for people when they are young (in this case) is possibly because there are more proteolytic enzymes produced in the body which have the role of dissolving fibrin after it does its job.
Is there any truth to this?
Yes there is. Gluten isn't just bad for those with celiac disease. You can also have gluten sensitivity without having the disease. There is still a lot unknown about gluten sensitivity but it has been shown that people without celiac disease's health can improve when eating a gluten-free diet.
Inflammation that goes beyond your digestive system is very likely to affect joints and according to Dr Rochelle Rosian, a rheumatologist at Cleveland Clinic, people with RA and gluten sensitivity experience less joint pain when they don't eat gluten (source: arthritis.org).
It is also true what they tell us about fibrin causing (or leading to) joint pain. Fibrin engages with inflammatory cells and "plays an important role in the inflammatory process and the development of rheumatoid arthritis" according to the Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center.
However, the misleading part of the whole sales pitch is how they make it seem that everyone's joint pain is stemming from gluten, which is far from being the truth.
While taking gluten out of your diet could very well do the trick, this is not a cure-all solution.
Systemic Enzyme Therapy
This is what they call this treatment.
Heal-N-Soothe contains proteolytic enzymes. So the goal is to increase the number of proteolytic enzymes in the body by supplementing more--and this will help get rid of the fibrin faster.
But this is just one way that it could help with joint pain. It also includes a handful of herbs that can help reduce inflammation among other things.
Let's take a look at the supplement label here and then I'll go over each of the ingredients individually.
- Proteolytic Enzymes -
These are enzymes that are produced by the stomach and pancreas. If you haven't heard of them before, maybe you have heard of them called by other names, such as peptidases, proteases or proteinases... which all refer to the same thing.
They are well known for their ability to digest proteins... which is what gluten is (gluten is a mixture of 2 proteins).
Our bodies produce these enzymes but, as mentioned, sometimes we don't produce enough and production normally will decrease with age.
You can get these enzymes naturally from foods like..
- Ginger root
- Kefir and more..
.. or you can take supplements like Heal N Soothe, which contains a 750 mg blend of different proteolytic enzymes.
This is a good amount if you compare it to natural sources. For example, about 0.3% of kiwi's weight is comprised of the proteolytic enzyme actinidin (source: Advances in Food and Nutrition Research). An average kiwi weights about 76 g, so if you do the math you are getting about 22.8 mg of the proteolytic enzyme per kiwi... a heck of a lot less than a serving of HNS.
- Boswellia Extract -
This traditional medicine has been used for years and is very common in traditional Indian medicine.
It is traditionally used for a number of different problems, including arthritis and bursitis. Treating inflammation and pain is something that it is being more closely looked at in recent years.
A 2014 study in the Indian Journal of Pharmacology found that an oral dose of the extract (125 mg) can increase pain tolerance and pain threshold... meaning that pain didn't bother patients as much.
However, the true anti-inflammatory potential of this herb is not well known and largely understudied.
Heal N Soothe contains 150 mg, which is a good amount and even more than many supplements on the market.
- Turmeric Rhizome -
Turmeric is one of the most popular natural supplements for treating inflammation on the market right now. If you have spent any period of time looking into natural remedies for joint pain then I'm sure you've come across this. For example, Joint Pain Hack and Instaflex Advanced (other joint supplements I've reviewed) contain this too.
While it is just recently gaining a lot of mainstream popularity, it has been used for centuries. According to PBS it emerged in Ayurveda medicine in as early as 500 BC.
The compound found in turmeric that is largely responsible for its anti-inflammatory properties is called curcumin.
In a study published in Arthritis Research & Therapy curcumin was found to suppress the expression of pro-inflammatory mediators and "significantly" reduce osteoarthritis progression. However, strangely it didn't show any effect on pain relief.
This supplement contains 60 mg of "turmeric rhizome". We have no idea how concentrated this extract is and the potency can make all the difference in the world.
That said, even if this were standardized to 95% curcuminoids (which is what you want), it still wouldn't be very much.
- Citrus Bioflavonoids Complex -
These bioflavonoids are commonly used for immune support and can help increase vitamin C absorption, which can help with arthritis and other inflammatory problems.
In an 8-week study with patients suffering from osteoarthritis in the knees, citrus bioflavonoids were found to have anti-inflammatory effects.
This supplement contains 90 mg of this complex, which is a decent amount if you compare it to other supplements.
Now you might be wondering... if these bioflavonoids are being consumed to enhance the effects of vitamin C, then why doesn't this supplement contain vitamin C?
Well... what I can say is that vitamin C is easy to come across and if you consider yourself to eat healthy amounts for fruits and vegetables then you likely are getting enough of it. But it would be nice if they had included some here.
- Ginger Root Extract -
Ginger is yet another traditional medicine that has been around for ages... thousands of years.
The bioactive compound called gingerol is what gives ginger much of it's anti-inflammatory and antioxidant benefits. It has been shown to reduce certain substances in the body that promote inflammation in the joints, which is why concentrated extract from ginger is sometimes used for arthritis treatment and similar ailments.
In a 2001 study published in Arthritis and Rheumatism 261 patients with osteoarthritis received either ginger extract or a placebo and were evaluated on their knee pain. The results--ginger extract had a "statistically significant" effect on reducing symptoms of OA...with a reduction in knee pain of 63% vs 50% in the placebo group-- maybe not all that significant though.
There are 90 mg per serving contained in HNS.
- Yucca Root -
Native to the dry coastal canyon regions of California, yucca has long been used as a traditional medicine by Native Americans--to treat inflammation, improve digestion, increase circulation and relieve pain.
The plant is rich in phenols that are well known for their anti-inflammatory effects. Resveratrol is the most famous of them--which is also found in high amounts in grapes and grape products.
There are 90 mg of yucca root included here and no indication that this is a concentrated extract.
- Alpha Lipoic Acid -
This organic compound is found in many different foods such as spinach, broccoli, yams, potatoes and more... but in low amounts. It is also produced by the body inside the mitochondria of our cells where it actually helps in the production of energy.
This compound has been found to lower markers of inflammation in a number of different studies, which is why it has gained so much attention in recent years.
HNS contains 50 mg of such, which is a pretty low amount but still better than nothing.
- Rutin -
A flavonoid known to reduce inflammation, rutin is also thought to treat a number of others conditions and be good for blood vessels.
A 2014 study in Inflammation Research found rutin to inhibit HMGB1 release, which is a mediator of vascular inflammatory conditions.
30 mg are included here per serving.
- Devil's Claw Root Extract -
The last on the list is Devil's Claw Root Extract, which is another traditionally used medicine--this one from South Africa originally.
According to the website Versus Arthritis, Devil's Claw has been proven to improve osteoarthritis pain when compared to placebo in at least 3 studies.
In one study Devil's Claw's pain relief effects were compared to that of phenylbutazone (NSAID) and participants reported more pain relief and less side effects with it.
Will These Ingredients Work?
Altogether it would seem so... there is a lot of research proving such, however none of these ingredients have been very heavily studied and much of the claims are still somewhat based on traditional medicine.
Additionally, clinical trials proving their effectiveness on humans are severely lacking. It's one thing to test on animals and a good sign if there are positive results, but the results don't always transfer over to humans.
And another problem I see with these ingredients is that some of them are not concentrated enough. The turmeric for example doesn't seem to be a concentrated extract... and even if it were it would be nice if they would have included a complimentary ingredient like piperine to increase the absorption of such by the body.
That said, yes there is definitely a lot of potential here and it is likely that you will benefit from this concoction.
There are always some potential side effects. While looking into the individual ingredients I found some claims of nausea, upset stomach, headache, diarrhea, etc. from users.
Upon reading over reviews from people who have actually taken Heal N Soothe itself I found some side effects to be:
- Stomach pain
- Sick feeling
- Bloating and burps
- Worsened joint pain
The pills are said to be 'spicy' so you might not want to take them on an empty stomach.
Note: It is always a good idea to consult with your doctor before taking any sort of supplement just to be on the safe side--especially if you are taking other medications!
Price & Free Trial
The normal price per bottle is $59. These include 90 capsules and will last you one month.
They also offer a free trial bottle where you just have to pay shipping, which is $9.95 for US orders and $19.95 for international orders.
Now you may be thinking... this is one heck of a high cost of shipping for a small supplement bottle... and you would be correct to think this.
In my opinion this is NOT a "free" trial and I wouldn't be surprised if they are making money from it.
Cancelling Your Subscription
When you sign up to get a free bottle you are enrolling yourself in a monthly auto-ship program as well. It clearly states this on the website.
So a month from signing up to get your free bottle, you will be shipped another bottle, this one at $49.95, which is a 33% discount from the regular price. And this will be shipped to you every month.
The number to call to cancel your subscription is:
- 1 (888) 231-9901
Or you can cancel online.
When it comes to customer reviews and complaints things aren't looking all too well. It does have an average rating of 3.7 out of 5 stars on Amazon, which really isn't too bad, but there are a lot of pretty nasty complaints both in the Amazon reviews and on other review sites.
But let's start off on a good note. Let's start off with the positive reviews. There are people who swear by this supplement when nothing else seemed to work... and I don't want to make it look worse than it really is in this review.
In the review below this customer claims Heal-N-Soothe was "the only thing" that worked for their chronic pain...
Here is another good review I found from someone claiming that it worked better for lowering triglycerides in the blood than the prescriptiomedication they were taking...
And here is another very positive review from someone who was at a dead-end and the doctors were of no help, but HNS worked with no side-effects...
Some of the top complaints that I think are worth mentioning are as follows...
Aggressive Emails - One thing that is for certain is that this product is marketed in an overly-aggressive manner. You might have noticed this if you've been receiving emails from them... and you may have even marked some of these emails as spam or junk... because they can be annoying.
Unauthorized Charges & Trouble Cancelling Account - One major complaint that I have come across quite a bit, and that is pretty concerning, is that people have been getting their credit cards charged without knowing it or even after canceling their subscriptions.
Those two complaints shown above I found on the BBB's website--and after looking around some more I came across other complaints on ComplaintsBoard about this too...
Lots of complaints about this from multiple sources... not a good sign.
Problems Getting Refunds - And as you can probably imagine after reading all of that, getting refunds from this company isn't exactly as easy as it may seem at first...
They won't refund it if opened?? How ridiculous is that?
On healnsoothe.com they mention that "you may return this package unopened for a full refund" in their Terms of Service, but there isn't really any refund policy that I can find.
They do however say that you can return it for a refund within 2 weeks if it doesn't work for you...
HOWEVER, I also found on another part of their website that you have a 90-day money-back guarantee... (or so they say)
So which is it?
I wish they would make it clear with a refund policy of some kind, but I can't really find what the real answer is to this.
Side Effects - As mentioned, there are some people complaining about side effects from taking this, although I will say that there aren't too many.
Several I found that were about the pills causing upset stomach and being spicy, like this one...
... and there were also a several like that below where it supposedly made their joint pain worse...
Company Background - Can They Be Trusted?
Upon all of the complaints about the company and how they give people trouble getting refunds and whatnot, I decided to look into them a bit more.
Not only do you want to be able to trust that they will hold up their end of the bargain if you do end up requesting a refund, but you also definitely want to be able to trust the company behind products you are putting in your body.
The company behind Heal-N-Soothe is Livingwell Nutraceuticals, and one of the first red-flags I noticed is that they can't even seem to spell their name right.
They spelled it right at the top of the page but as of this review the name is spelled incorrectly at the bottom of the page... It's missing an 'L'.
Going off of their profile on the BBB's website they are pretty much a ghost. They have been in business for a while but are not accredited, don't have a rating, and don't have any customer reviews or complaints.
The good sign is that they are based in the USA, which is much better than dealing with some company in some other country with less strict laws, and they provide their phone support number (800-248-1068).
That said, their address on the BBB's website is listed in Nevada and when you go to the 'Contact Us' page on the Heal-N-Soothe website it is listed in California.
But I guess companies often have more than one address for HQ's, return centers, etc... so this might be nothing to worry about.
The manager listed as a contact for the company is Jesse Cannone, who is actually the founder and CEO of the Healthy Back Institute (as mentioned in the complaints)--as well as a personal trainer and post-rehab specialist.
Things were looking better after seeing some qualifications this guy has... until I took a look on the BBB's website and found that The Healthy Back Institute's accredation was revoked and they have a F rating... not looking too good.
Overall the company doesn't seem to be all that trustworthy based on what I see here. I don't know about you, but this isn't the type of business I like dealing with.
Pros v Cons
- Natural ingredients
- Unlikely to have side effects
- Free trial offer
- Free shipping (excluding free trial offer)
- Limited evidence supporting the ingredients' effectiveness
- Some ingredients are not concentrated enough to really do much for you
- Free trial signs you up for monthly subscription with recurring payments
- Doesn't seem to be made by the most trustworthy company
- Pretty expensive
Is Heal-N-Soothe a Scam?
I would not consider this a scam, although I know a lot of people are calling it such.
It's true that they do use some sneaky and 'shady' marketing tricks to sucker people into subscribing to monthly orders, which is pretty scammy I guess, but overall I wouldn't consider the product a scam.
While Heal-N-Soothe definitely does have some potential to help with joint pain, I'm not really recommending it to my readers due to the company not being all that trustworthy as well as the price being fairly high.
That said, it is your choice and if you are still interested you can purchase Heal-N-Soothe here.
Just don't expect it to be the miracle worker that it is often portrayed as being in the marketing material. Also, you have to give it a couple of weeks before giving up. Sometimes supplements like this take a while to show positive results.
I hope you enjoyed my review and found it helpful (and if you did please share!). Leave any comments or questions below and I'll get back to you as soon as I can 🙂