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Fact checked by Robert Iafelice, MS, RD, LDNFACT CHECKED
August 07, 2023
Chronic pain is debilitating. It affects everything we do, making it a struggle just to get through the day. So, it's no wonder that people who suffer from such pain are desperate to find relief. There are many products to meet that need, each claiming to provide the ultimate solution to ongoing pain. A popular option is Relief Factor, which claims to have helped tens of thousands of people find lasting relief from aches and pains. In this article, we put that claim to the test with our comprehensive review of Relief Factor. Read on to find out whether Relief Factor really will relieve your pain.
In this article you can expect:
The dietary supplement Relief Factor is advertised as a safe, all-natural way to support the body's normal inflammatory response while also enhancing joint and muscle health. It has a combination of four primary components: fish oil (which contains omega-3 fatty acids), turmeric, resveratrol, and icariin (a substance derived from the herb Epimedium).
According to the manufacturer, the ingredients in the formula for relief factor work well together synergistically to lessen inflammation, support the body's normal pain-response mechanism, and enhance general well-being. Relief Factor is marketed as a supplement that can ease sporadic muscular soreness, general aches, and joint discomfort brought on by daily activities, exercise, or aging. People looking for all-natural alternatives to conventional painkillers and people who want assistance maintaining joint and muscle health are the two target markets for this product.
Relief Factor contains some proven ingredients that can help bring relief from pain. The problem comes down to the dosage. That being said, the amount of omega-3 fatty acids, which provides a good blend of DHA and EPA, is well-dosed at 900 mg per serving. But then you've got turmeric, which is dosed at 667 mg. of which there is just 18% of the active ingredient curcumin. That works out to just 120 mg of curcumin when you really need between 500 and 2000 mg to make a difference.
Then there's icariin, which is derived from horny goat weed. This compound has been shown to help improve your libido, but the evidence for its ability to help with pain relief is sorely lacking. It's also underdosed at 200 mg, with the effective amount, according to research being 250 to 100 mg daily.
There is some solid research behind resveratrol's pain-relieving potential, but, once gained, it is underdosed here. You get 70 mg, which really should be 100 mg or more.
So, what do we find with Relief Factor? The only effectively dosed ingredient that will positively impact pain is omega-3 fatty acids. But you could pay a lot less for a straight-out omega-3 supplement. Alternatively, consider buying one of the alternatives, such as FlexAgain, that we cover later in the article.
Overall Verdict: FAIL
Let's now lift the lid on the active ingredients that make up Relief Factor. We'll consider the research to support their inclusion and the dosage which is given per serving.
Icariin is a naturally occurring flavonoid. It is found in a few plant species, most notably in the herb Epimedium, often known as hairy goat weed. Traditional Chinese medicine has long used epimedium to promote libido. Research has found it to be beneficial as an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. Icarin's possible capacity to suppress the PDE5 enzyme, which is involved in controlling blood flow, is one of its significant effects. This promotes erectile function.¹
According to the research, the 200 mg dosage of icariin in Relief Factor is lower than the established range, which is between 250-1000 mg.
Check out our article on the best Horny Goat Weed Supplements.
The active compound in turmeric is curcumin. It has received a lot of attention due to its potential to help with pain relief. Two key inflammatory enzymes, Cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and lipoxygenase (LOX), have been identified. Curcumin might aid in easing the discomfort brought on by inflammatory disorders by lowering inflammation.
Studies have shown that curcumin has the potential to help relieve pain brought on by such illnesses as neuropathic pain, musculoskeletal problems, and even arthritis symptoms.²
The bioavailability of turmeric is low, so the body does not readily absorb it. The 667 mg of turmeric in Relief Factor provides you with just 120 mg of curcumin, which is well down on the ideal dose of 500-2000 mg.
For properly dosed turmeric supplements, check out the Best Curcumin Supplements.
Resveratrol is a natural compound that is found in grapes, peanuts, and berries. It is well known for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. However, its direct ability to provide pain relief is not well established. That being said, the anti-inflammatory effects of resveratrol may help lessen pain.
The research on resveratrol has largely centered on its potential health benefits regarding cardiovascular health, cognitive benefits, and anti-aging effects.³
Resveratrol is dosed here at 70 mg, which is well short of the amount used in clinical trials, ranging from 100 to 250 mg.
Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) is an omega-3 fatty acid found to have anti-inflammatory effects, which can reduce pain. It does this by modifying the inflammation response to pain. EPA may negate the effects of omega-6 fatty acids, arachidonic acid, which is a precursor for pro-inflammatory chemicals.
Research has shown that EPA can positively affect pain reduction and help improve the symptoms of neuropathic pain, osteoarthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis.⁴ Additional research is required to fully comprehend the precise mechanisms and ideal EPA levels for pain reduction because the evidence is inconclusive.
EPA is dosed at 667 mg in this product, which is in line will clinical trials.
Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is an omega-3 fatty acid that has been well-researched for its pain management potential. Just like EPA, it has DHA anti-inflammatory effects. It has been shown to help the body make anti-inflammatory substances while also suppressing the production of pro-inflammatory molecules such as prostaglandins and leukotrienes.
Studies have shown that DHA can help relieve pain associated with rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, and neuropathic pain.⁵ Although the results of clinical studies are not always reliable, several studies have shown benefits like decreased dependency on painkillers, increased joint function, and lower pain severity.
You get 253 mg of DHA in every serving of Relief Factor, which lines up with the dosages used in clinical trials.
The particular adverse effects of Relief Factor can change depending on a person's health, pre-existing diseases, and drug combinations. It's important to take into account any potential side effects linked to each ingredient since Relief Factor is a combination of ingredients.
Omega-3 fatty acids from fish oil: While fish oil is typically well accepted, some people may develop moderate gastrointestinal symptoms such as nausea, diarrhea, or fishy burps. Additionally, it may have a minor blood-thinning effect. Therefore, people using blood-thinning drugs should use them cautiously.
Turmeric: When consumed in the recommended doses, turmeric (also known as curcumin) is generally regarded as safe. However, excessive doses or prolonged use may result in gastrointestinal problems like diarrhea or stomach distress. Additionally, it could thin the blood, so people who are using blood thinners or who have surgery scheduled should use caution.
Resveratrol: Resveratrol, whether taken orally or as a supplement, is typically well tolerated. However, some people may experience stomach discomfort or allergic responses from large doses or prolonged use.
Icariin: Icariin generally has good tolerability. However, the precise adverse effects are not well known. An upset stomach or allergic responses are possible for some people.
It's important to remember that when dietary supplements like Relief Factor are used at the prescribed dosages, adverse effects are often minor and infrequent.
There are a number of reviews for Relief Factor online, including on the official website, which are obviously overwhelmingly positive. However, we can also check the Better Business Bureau for a more balanced set of reviews. There we find 98 reviews, with an average rating of 1.54 stars. Here are a couple of typical customer reviews for relief factor:
A serving of Relief Factor consists of a packet containing two capsules and two softgels. According to the official relief factor website, you should take three packets per day for the first three weeks. You can then reduce the dosage to two packets per day.
There are no recommendations on the website or the label as to what time of day you should take Relief Factor or whether it should be taken with food.
People who occasionally experience joint pain, muscle soreness, or general pains brought on by normal activities, exercise, or aging may want to think about Relief Factor. It may also benefit those who are suffering from joint pain.
There are many alternatives to Relief Factor on the market. Here are three popular natural pain-treating anxiety-relieving supplements that we rate as worthy contenders:
FlexAgain is a natural pain-relieving supplement from a company called FlexAgain. It's available from the official website, which is quite refreshing in its lack of over-the-top marketing. In fact, it states that FlexAgain might not work for everyone. Here's what they say:
We're not going to promise you it's going to work. It may not; what we've created is one supplement and tried to fit as many of the best ingredients (that have been shown to be effective) into it as possible, giving you the best chance of getting something that works for you.
FlexAgain contains 11 ingredients, which is more than double what you find in the Relief Factor formula. Here's what you get:
Omega 3 Fatty Acids: 1100 mg
Vitamin D: 15 mcg
Vitamin K2: 70 mcg
Ginger and Blue Galangal Extract: 250 mg
Bromelain: 100 mg
Curcumin Extract: 500 mg
Resveratrol: 100 mg
Methylsulfonylmethane: 50 mg
Glucosamine: 400 mg
Chondroitin: 250 mg
Boswellic Acid: 100 mg
Most of these ingredients are pretty well-dosed. The exceptions are Ginger and Blue Galangal, an effective anti-inflammatory at a dosage of 2000-4000 mg per day. Yet, you only get 250 mg of the extract in FlexAgain. The dosage of curcumin extract is also on the low side. Overall, though, there is enough here to provide noticeable effects in terms of pain relief.
Though it is a relatively new supplement, FlexAgain is receiving a lot of positive customer feedback. A money-back guarantee protects your purchase, so you've really got nothing to lose on this one.
A one-month supply of FlexAgain costs $69.47 (discounted from $76.99). It is only available from the official manufacturer's website.
Physio Flex Pro is marketed as a natural pain relief supplement that claims to be able to get rid of joint pain. It combines the following ingredients:
Turmeric: 200 mg
Selenium: 200 mcg
Glucosamine HCL: 500 mg
Bromelain: 300 mg
Ginger extract: 250 mg
Chondroitin Sulfate: 100 mg
Methylsulfonylmethane: 100 mg
Bioperine: 10 mg
The manufacturer claims that this combination of ingredients will nourish the synovial fluid between your joints to lubricate and loosen stiff joints. It also claims to be able to protect cartilage, which is the connective tissue between your joints, and eliminate nagging aches and pains. Improving mobility and flexibility, strengthening bones, and reducing pain and inflammation are further claimed benefits of Physio Flex Pro.
A serving size for Physio Flex Pro is two capsules. A one-month supply is $58. If you buy in bulk, you will receive a discount. Two bottles will cost you $114, with three bottles going for $160 and five for $230. That's a pretty good price compared to the competition. It is only available from the official manufacturer's website. A 60-day money-back guarantee supports your purchase.
Performance Lab Flex is a daily joint health supplement. It was created expressly to improve joint health and relieve pain and discomfort brought on by physical activity and exercise. It is designed to give joints, tendons, ligaments, and connective tissues specific support, enhancing flexibility, mobility, and general joint health.
Performance Lab Flex Pain Relief's main ingredients are:
Boswellia serrata extract: Boswellia is a natural herb renowned for its ability to reduce inflammation. Both pain alleviation and joint inflammation reduction are benefits. ApresFlex® is a specialized Boswellia serrata extract that increases the compound's bioavailability and effectiveness. It helps to support joint flexibility and lessen joint pain.
CurcuWIN Turmeric: A branded form of turmeric extract that is standardized for curcumin. It makes use of a specialized technology called UltraSOL™, which enhances the absorption and bioavailability of curcumin in the body.
Glucosamine sulfate 2KCL: Also known as glucosamine sulfate potassium chloride, is a dietary supplement commonly used to support joint health and alleviate symptoms associated with osteoarthritis. Glucosamine is a naturally occurring compound found in the body, particularly in the cartilage of joints.
Glucosamine sulfate 2KCL is produced by combining glucosamine with sulfate and potassium chloride.
This supplement offers targeted support for joint health and pain alleviation when taken orally as indicated, typically with meals. It is meant to be used as a component of an all-encompassing strategy for joint care, which also includes a good diet, consistent exercise, and a healthy way of life.
A month's Performance Lab Flex Pain Relief supply costs $49.00 from the official website. That works out to $1.63 per serving, which represents pretty good value for money. Discounts are available for bulk purchases.
Based on our in-depth analysis of Relief Factor, we do not believe that Relief Factor is worth trying. Even though it contains potentially effective ingredients, most are underdosed. You get a decent amount of DHA and EPA omega-3 fatty acids, but you'd be better off paying much less for a stand-alone omega-3 supplement.
The particular side effects of Relief Factor are not well known, but some of its ingredients, such as fish oil and turmeric, may cause minor gastrointestinal symptoms, including nausea or diarrhea. Resveratrol and icariin are usually tolerated well, but some people may have stomach discomfort. Because fish oil and turmeric have blood-thinning qualities, care should be taken when taking blood-thinning drugs.
While individual doctors may recommend certain natural pain relief supplements, Relief Factor is generally not recommended by medical professionals.
The monthly cost of Relief Factor is $79.95 through subscription.
After an exhaustive analysis of this product, we conclude that Relief Factor will give you a good daily dosage of EPA and DHA fatty acids, but that's about all. Relief Factor's other ingredients are either under-dosed or not relevant. You can save money by buying an omega-3 supplement or investing in an alternative pain-relieving supplement with a more robust ingredient profile. We recommend Flex Again, Physio Flex Pro, and Performance Lab Flex as worthy contenders.
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September 23, 2023
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