Updated 8/25/23. Relief Factor is said to be a 100% drug-free solution to excess pain and inflammation that's born out of 15 years of clinical research and practice. As the name implies, the Relief Factor formula is supposed to give you relief from aches and pains, helping you to be in less discomfort as you go about your daily activities. No doubt this is a popular supplement with heavy hitters like Larry Elder, Charlie Kirk, and others saying it works. But what does the research say? Is it legit or is Relief Factor a hoax? Let's look at the ingredients, proof, cost, pros & cons, and important details about how to take advantage of the money-back guarantee if you need to get a refund. Affiliate Disclosure: This site may earn a small commission on purchases you make. See the affiliate disclosure page for more insights.
Relief Factor Quick Summary
|Relief Factor/Promedev LLC
|Type of supplement
|See below for details
|How much do you take?
|Depends. Generally 2 packets per day
|No caffeine or other stimulants
|How long will it last?
|A bag should last a month if taken as directed
|How long until you see results?
|It depends on the type and severity of your problem
|Does it work for everybody?
|Some may not see benefits.
|Any side effects?
|None reported. See side effects section below
|Is it vegan?
|The supplement is not vegan
|How much does it cost?
|QuickStart: $19.95 / $79.95 per month after
|Is it sold in stores?
|Not at this time
|How to order?
|Order at the official company website.
What Is Relief Factor?
Relief Factor is advertised as a 100% drug-free fish oil and botanical formula that's said to reduce pain by reducing inflammation. While inflammation is part of the healing process, too much that happens over a long time (chronic inflammation) is linked to rheumatoid arthritis as well as several diseases including diabetes, cancer, and even heart disease. The makers of this supplement don't claim Relief Factor helps heart disease, etc. but their advertisements make one think it can reduce chronic pain conditions, allowing people to move better without feeling in discomfort.
Larry Elder Relief Factor Commercial
You've probably seen TV commercials for Relief Factor featuring Larry Elder and others on various TV shows such as Tucker Carlson Tonight. If not, here is one of the commercials:
How Do You Take Relief Factor?
If you order the QuickStart option, it comes with 49 packets. Each packet has:
- 2 soft gels (containing fish oil including EPA and DHA)
- 2 capsules (containing the herbal ingredients)
So if you take just 1 packet, you are consuming 4 supplements per day.
If this is your first time taking Relief Factor, the company recommends taking 3 packets daily for the first week. This means you would be taking 12 supplements per day. For the following two weeks, take 2 packets per day. Here's what it looks like:
- The first week: take 3 packets per day (12 supplements per day)
- The second week: take 2 packets per day (8 supplements per day)
- The third week: take 2 packets per day (8 supplements per day)
After that, take two packets per day.
The company states that if you feel stomach upset, try taking Relief Factor with food. Taking less than recommended for the first week may also reduce side effects and give your body time to adjust.
Relief Factor Supplement Facts Ingredients
Each packet (two capsules and two soft gels) has 15 calories and these active ingredients:
|Japanese Knotweed Extract
Cellulose powder, cellulose (the capsule) silica, steric acid (vegetable source). The soft gel capsule's other ingredients contain gelatin, glycerine, enteric coating, and d-alpha-tocopherol (vitamin E). Vitamin E is an antioxidant and is probably used to prevent the spoilage of omega-3 fatty acids.
What Is the Evidence For Relief Factor?
On the official website, it is stated “Relief Factor was born out of 15 years of clinical practice and research.” However, no clinical research on Relief Factor itself is listed. Likewise, the supplement does not appear to be mentioned in clinical databases such as Pubmed.gov or ClinicalTrials.gov. This hints that the true evidence lies with the ingredients in Relief Factor.
Relief Factor Ingredients Proof
Fish Oil Fatty Acids (EPA & DHA) 1400 mg (total oils)
Two capsules of the supplement contain a total of 1400 mg of fish oils which come from Chile and Norway. The fish oils are in the ethyl ester form. Of that amount, 900 mg comes from EPA and DHA fatty acids. More specifically, two soft gels contain 647 mg of EPA and 253 mg of DHA. This is comparable to some brands of fish oil but is less than that found in other quality brands. The omega-3 fatty acids come from mackerel, anchovy, and sardine oil. Some research finds greater degrees of low back pain in those who have high triglyceride levels. The EPA and DHA in fish oil are well known to lower triglycerides in the blood. If this is true, it may offer one explanation of how the Relief Factor formula works.
Fish fatty acids are thought to reduce arthritis pain by inhibiting hormone-like substances called prostaglandins. Prostaglandin production is thought to take part in autoimmune disease and inflammation. Fish oil supplements also appear to help arthritis medications work better although one critique is that many investigations are of low quality. Thus, more research is needed.
Another way omega-3 fats from fish may help is by reducing inflammation. Doctors may test for systemic inflammation by measuring C-reactive protein (CRP) levels. Some research suggests the combination of EPA and DHA (1000 mg) reduces CRP levels in people with kidney disease. Researchers testing a specific type of turmeric extract (called B-Turmactive) reported that while knee pain was not reduced more than a placebo, C reactive protein levels declined after just 1 week.
Fish Oil Omega-3 Fatty Acids For Osteoarthritis Joint Pain Relief
Whether fish oil supplements help arthritis joint pain is somewhat controversial. While anecdotal reports suggest it does do this, clinical studies usually find it does not help. That said, in one investigation, overweight older adults who also had osteoarthritis were given 2000 mg of DHA, 400 mg of EPA, and 160 mg of curcumin each day for 16 weeks. Compared to those who took a placebo pill, 86% of the people taking the fish oil/curcumin combination reported reductions in osteoarthritis and chronic pain. Those people also reported improved mood and fewer symptoms of depression as well.
Epimedium (Epimedium grandiflorum) 200 mg
Also called “horny goat weed,” epimedium is an herb used in traditional Chinese medicine and is sometimes found in male performance and testosterone booster supplements. So what is it doing in a pain-relieving supplement like Relief Factor? The Supplement Facts label tells us that the epimedium is standardized to contain 20% icariin. What is icariin? Icariin is a type of flavonoid that is thought to possess both antioxidant and anti-inflammation benefits.
So what's the proof that epimedium or icariin reduces pain? Some research hints icariin decreases low back pain in rats. Other animal studies suggest icariin may slow the progression of osteoarthritis by preventing bone and cartilage breakdown. Animal experiments also suggest epimedium may help osteoarthritis pain.
Given that most research has not progressed to humans, it's not possible to say definitively if epimedium or its icariin helps people who are in pain.
Turmeric (Curcuma longa) 667 mg
The spice turmeric, known for giving mustard, its yellow color, has been aggressively studied and found to possess both antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. As an antioxidant, turmeric and curcumin act as natural Nrf2 activators which in turn reduce oxidative stress in the body.
The turmeric extract in Relief Factor is standardized to contain 18% curcuminoids. Curcuminoids are substances found in turmeric spice that are thought to be responsible for some of the spice's effects. Curcumin is one of those curcuminoids and also plays a role in glutathione production.
As a natural analgesic, some research suggests curcumin may help ease joint pain and inflammation caused by osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. While some studies hint that turmeric may be superior to NSAIDs such as ibuprofen at reducing arthritis pain, other studies show the spice is less effective than NSAIDs. One problem with research is that the dosage used in studies varies and can range from about 100 mg to over 2000 mg per day. This makes pinpointing the optional curcumin dosage difficult. In one review, it was concluded you might need about 1000 mg of turmeric extract to significantly reduce joint pain from arthritis. It's possible lesser dosages may be effective for those with less joint cartilage breakdown.
Japanese Knotweed Extract (Polygonum cuspidatum) 70 mg
Also known as giant knotweed, Fallopia japonica, Fleece Flower, and Hu zhang, Japanese knotweed has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries. While it may resemble bamboo -and even called “Japanese bamboo” – it is not the same thing. Like bamboo, it's also considered an invasive plant that can crowd out surrounding flora. One interesting thing about Japanese Knotweed is that it is a natural source of resveratrol as well as other antioxidants and phytonutrients such as rutin, quercetin, apigenin, coumarins, and kaempferol.
The Relief Factor supplement facts label tells us the Japanese knotweed is standardized to contain 96% trans-resveratrol. Trans-resveratrol is considered to have the greatest biological activity, so this is good. Rich sources of trans-resveratrol in foods include grapes, blueberries, peanuts, and mulberries. Resveratrol has been shown to reduce inflammation and oxidative stress in cells. In theory, this may reduce some forms of pain however resveratrol has not been adequately tested for this purpose.
Animal research suggests that Japanese knotweed may help ease gout arthritis in mice however human proof appears to be lacking. For those who suffer from gout pain, it's not known if Japanese knotweed inhibits uric acid production in humans or how its effectiveness compares to other natural treatments such as celery seeds.
Do celery help gout joint pain?
Watch on my youtube channel if you prefer
Does Relief Factor Contain Glucosamine?
The Supplement Facts label does not list glucosamine sulfate, glucosamine HCL or N-acetyl glucosamine (NAG). Various studies have indicated glucosamine sulfate (but not glucosamine HCL) improves joint pain caused by osteoarthritis. Other studies suggest glucosamine may also improve the look of crepiness, age spots, and sagging skin too.
Watch on my youtube channel if you prefer
Calling Relief Factor Customer Service
I had the opportunity to call customer service several times with questions about this supplement. Each time my calls were answered promptly and the person I spoke to was courteous and answered my questions. At no time did I feel pressured to buy Relief Factor. From my experience, I would give their staff an A+ rating.
How Much Does Relief Factor Really Cost?
The company has different prices and all of them include paying $6.95 for shipping. Let's look at the options. The simple way is to order the QuickStart bag of Relief Factor and get enrolled in their Preferred Member program. This means you will automatically get new supplements each month until you cancel.
The Quick Start bag costs $19.95 + $6.95 for shipping, bringing the total cost to $26.90. This is an introductory price and the QuickStart bag will last you 3 weeks if you take it as directed. You have 3 weeks to cancel future shipments. The 3 weeks begin when you order Relief Factor, not when it arrives at your home. Since it may take 4 to 5 business days to reach your home, you really have less than 3 weeks to experiment with Relief Factor and cancel if you need to.
If you do not cancel within the three-week period, you will automatically begin receiving monthly shipments, which will cost $79.95 + $6.95 shipping ($86.90 total). The auto-shipments will continue until you call the company and cancel. See below for how to cancel and get a refund.
Do You Have To Purchase The QuickStart Bag of Relief Factor?
Buying the QuickStart option enrolls you into automatic monthly shipments. The QuickStart option costs $19.95 + $6.95 shipping ($26.95 total).
When I called customer service, I was informed you can also opt to purchase a single three-week supply for $40.90 ($33.95 + $6.95 shipping). Choosing this option stops the monthly auto-shipments. You will have to call the company to order more when you run out. This is the same thing as the QuickStart option minus being enrolled in their preferred membership program.
Another Purchas Option
The FAQ page of the company website mentions that you can also purchase a full single one-month supply of Relief Factor. If you choose this option, this will cost $93.95 plus $6.95 shipping ($100.90). For those who do not want to be in the membership program, this may be a better option. If you wanted to perform a one-month experiment to see if it works for you, here's the price breakdown:
1-month supply without auto-shipments: $93.95 + $6.95. Total Cost $100.90
Quickstart program with auto-shipments: $26.90 (Quickstart) + $79.95 + 6.95 (auto-shipment cost): $86.90. Total Cost $113.90.
From this, it appears buying a 1 month's supply outright is $13 less expensive.
How Many Packets of Relief Factor Per Bag?
When you purchase QuickStart, you'll get a 3-week supply that has 49 packets. The regular one-month supply bag has 60 packets. Each packet contains 2 capsules and 2 gel caps.
Cost Per Packet
Since a full month's supply has 60 packets and costs $79.95, this means each packet costs $1.33. If you take the recommended two packets per day, your daily investment is $2.66. If you factor in shipping costs, the price will be a bit more than this.
What Are The Free Gifts?
When you order the 3-week QuickStart program you also can choose to receive:
- Vitamin D: 30 soft gels. Each soft gel has 2000 IU (50 mcg) of vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol)
- Vitamin C: 30 tablets. Each tablet has 500 mg of ascorbic acid (vitamin C) and 40 mg of rose hips.
- A 147-page ebook: Anti-inflammatory diet
What Methods of Payment Can You Use?
The company accepts all major credit cards (Visa, Master Card, Discover, etc.) but does not accept PayPal.
Can You Pay For Relief Factor With A Health Savings Account?
Health Savings Accounts (HSA) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) make for convenient ways to pay for medical expenses. If you are considering using your HSA or FSA to pay for Relief Factor, the company suggests first contacting those who manage the accounts and getting approval before making a purchase. Depending on regulations, some HSAs may cover the supplement while others might not.
Does Relief Factor Contain Black Pepper?
Black pepper (piper nigrum/piper longum) is sometimes used alongside turmeric to enhance its absorption. Piperine, a substance found in black pepper, can significantly increase the absorption of both turmeric and curcumin. Since black pepper is not listed on the supplement facts label, it's possible Relief Factor does not contain it. Instead, the Relief Factor formula contains curcumin phytosome which also increases absorption and bioavailability. Curcumin phytosome is the combination of curcumin with a phospholipid (a type of fat, like lecithin). Because curcumin is fat soluble, combining it with fat improves absorption by as much as 29 times by some estimates.
Relief Factor and the FDA & FTC
While the company appears to have no run-ins with the FDA, in 2019, the Center For Science in the Public Interest sent a letter to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) over ads featuring former Trump Administration official Sebastian Gorka, who in advertisements, was referred to as “Dr. Sebastian Gorka.” Dr. Gorka's Ph.D. is in political science, not medicine. Here's a video of the TV commercial.
In current TV commercials, Dr. Gorka is identified as having a Ph.D. in political science.
Is Relief Factor FDA Approved?
The United States Food Drug Administration (FDA) does not approve dietary supplements. This means companies do not generally have to apply to the FDA before selling supplements. Public confusion about this may be related to the fact that the FDA does regulate the manufacture of supplements, and the claims companies can make about their health effects. The regulations governing dietary supplements are known as the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act, abbreviated as DSHEA.
Better Business Bureau Review & Complaints
While the supplement appears to be valued by many people, the BBB gives the company 2 out of 5 stars. The company phone number listed is 800-500-8384. Note that this is a different phone number than the advertised customer service number, 833-888-1533. Relief factor is a BBB-accredited company with an A rating and does respond to customer complaints filed with the BBB. When last checked, customer complaints lodged with the BBB generally had to do with:
- Problems with the product/service
- Billing / collections
See the BBB file for updates and more information.
Relief Factor Trust Pilot Reviews
Trust pilot rated the supplement 2 out of 5 stars when last checked. There were 8 customer reviews listed on the site at that time. Of those, 12% rated the supplement as “Excellent,” and 63% rated it as “Bad.” Things people said about the supplement included:
- Saw a great difference in 1 week
- Made pain worse
- Complicated to cancel
To be fair, 8 reviews are not a lot to draw definitive conclusions from. As with any supplement, your experience may differ from others.
Who Makes Relief Factor?
The company is simply called Relief Factor, and another business name is Promedev LLC. The company was founded by the father and son team of Pete and Seth Talbot, who also run a marketing agency called the Talbot Group (TalbotGroup.com).
The Promedev LLC company has been in business since 2013 and is located at 11335 NE 122nd Way Ste 140, Kirkland, WA 98034-6919. This address corresponds to an office building. Other businesses listing this same address include Longevity Development LLC, Longevity Medical Clinic PLLC, and Redmond Avocent Corp.
Over the years, Relief Factor has been endorsed by several celebrities, including:
- Mark Spitz (9-time Olympic Gold medalist)
- Pat Boone (singer and actor)
- Larry Elder (talk show host, attorney)
- Kyle Jones (professional bull rider)
- Charlie Kirk (talk show host/Turning Point USA founder)
- Sebastian Gorka (lecturer, presidential advisor)
- Joe Piscopo (comedian, actor)
Non Celebrity Endorsements
If you search online, you are bound to find testimonials from people who said the supplement eased their pain. One example is this video from a gentleman who claimed Relief Factor helped him after he broke his back:
Obviously, results will vary, and to be fair, even the company website states some people may not see improvements.
Relief Factor Customer Complaints
On the flip side is this person who claimed the supplement did not help him:
The Better Business Bureau has over 90 customer reviews. Here's a summary of some of what they said:
- Delivered to the wrong address
- It did not work
- Canceling orders was difficult
- Did not help spinal stenosis with chronic low back pain
- Did not work after 90 days
It's not possible to say whether these complaints are common or not so take them for what they are – a sampling. One problem with customer reviews is the possibility that only those with negative reactions might speak up. Obviously, not everyone will have problems and positive testimonials for Relief Factor do exist.
Is Relief Factor Safe For People With Gout?
Those who have a painful arthritis condition called gout can have flair-ups if they eat purine-containing foods, including sardines, herring, and mackerel. The omega-3s in Relief Factor come from sardine oil, and mackerel (and anchovies). That said, the company molecularly distills its omega-3 fats to remove toxins and impurities, including those that would make gout worse. While eating fish that is low in purines can reduce gout pain, taking EPA and DHA fish oil supplements doesn't appear to have the same gout-improving effects.
Relief Factor vs. Omega XL
Another supplement you've probably seen on TV is Omega XL, famously advertised by Larry King for many years. Omega XL is a supplement made by Great Health Works and contains a fatty acid extract from the green-lipped mussel called PCSO-524. The green-lipped mussel fatty acid extract is said to reduce pain by reducing inflammation.
Several clinical studies dating back over 30 years appear to show the extract from green-lipped mussels may reduce osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis pain and maybe muscle pain that occurs after exercise.
Each gel cap of Omega XL has 7.3 mg of EPA and 5.5 mg of DHA fish oils. This is far less than the 647 mg of EPA and 235 mg found in the Relief Factor formula. This indicates fish oil is not the key ingredient in Omega XL. Rather, the active ingredient in Omega XL is the green-lipped mussel extract (PCSO-524). Each soft gel of Omega XL has 50 mg of this green-lipped mussel extract. Thus far, it does not appear Relief Factor has been compared to Omega XL in clinical studies or that both supplements would work better together than either would by themselves.
See the Omega XL review for insights.
Relief Factor vs. Zyflamend
Another popular supplement is called Zyflamend. Like Relief Factor, the makers of Zyflamend also claim reductions in whole-body inflammation. While both supplements contain turmeric and Japanese knotweed, the amounts are different. Here are the ingredients side-by-side:
|Zyflamend ( 2 soft gels)
|Relief Factor (2 packets)
|Rosemary 150 mg
|Fish Oil 1400 mg
|Turmeric 110 mg
|EPA 647 mg
|Ginger 100 mg
|DHA 253 mg
|Holy Basil 100 mg
|Epimedium 200 mg
|Green Tea 100 mg
|Turmeric Extract 667 mg
|Japanese Knotweed 80 mg
|Japanese knotweed 70 mg
|Chinese Goldthread 40 mg
|Barberry 40 ng
|Oregano 40 mg
|Chinese Skullcap 20 mg
Another difference between them is several animal and cell-based clinical studies appear to show Zyflamend may not only reduce inflammation but may also reduce prostate cancer.
See the Zyflamend review for more insights.
How Long Does Relief Factor Last In Your Home?
Expect the supplement to last for at least a year. There will be an expiration date printed on the package that tells you the best used-by date. While the company does not suggest refrigeration, keeping fish oils cold might extend their lifespan and prevent fish-smelling burps, which is a sign the oils have gone rancid.
Is Relief Factor Sold in Local Stores?
At this time, the only way to purchase Relief Factor is by going to its official website. While this may change at any time, the supplement is not currently sold in familiar shops like Walmart, Target, GNC, Vitam Shoppe, Kroger, Costco, BJ's Sams Club, Food Lion, or Trader Joe's. When checked, it was not sold on either Amazon or eBay either.
Money Back Guarantee and Relief Factor Refund Information – IMPORTANT!
Relief Factor comes with a 90-day money-back guarantee. If you want a refund, you need to understand the company only returns money for unopened bags. This is different from other companies whose supplements can be returned even if the bottles are opened and completely empty.
If you have ordered this supplement and want to get your money back, first call Relief Factor customer service at 833-888-1533 Monday through Friday between the hours of 8 AM and 9 PM ET. Don't call on the weekends. Don't leave a message. Call during the week.
If the outer shipping bag has not been opened, you can avoid return costs by writing REFUSED on the outside of the package and mailing the supplements to this address:
If the outer shipping bag has been opened, then you have to pay the return shipping postage. Also, consider adding tracking to your package in the rare instance it gets lost in the mail.
Is The Relief Factor Formula Sold Internationally?
At this time, it is only sold within the United States. This rule may have changed when you see this so reach out to the company for updated information.
Is Relief Factor Vegan?
Since the supplement contains omega-3 fats derived from fish (EPA and DHA), this means it is not vegan. The soft gels also contain gelatin. On the flip side, the supplement is both gluten-free and has no wheat but there are trace amounts of soy.
What About Pesticides?
Relief Factor herbal ingredients (epimedium, Japanese knotweed, and turmeric) are not certified as organic. The company leaves open the possibility that the farmers growing those herbs may choose to use organic pesticides /herbicides but that would be their choice and there is no guarantee of this.
Does Relief Factor Have Side Effects or Negative Reactions?
There are no known recalls or adverse side effects with this supplement. That said, here are some things to consider:
- Start with less than recommended for the first week. If there are side effects, taking less may help minimize them.
- Stop taking Relief Factor at least 2 weeks before having surgery
- Speak to your doctor if you take any medications or if you are pregnant or breastfeeding
- Fish oil supplements may be ill-advised in those taking certain kinds of blood thinners such as coumadin (warfarin)
- Turmeric might interfere with blood thinner medications like coumadin (warfarin)
- Fat blocker weight loss drugs like Orlistat/Alli may reduce the absorption of fish oil supplements
- Avoid epimedium while pregnant. It may not be safe for the baby.
- Epimedium may raise estrogen levels in women. In theory, it may be inappropriate for those with breast cancer or other cancers activated by high estrogen levels.
Other Relief Factor Supplements
If you search the company website you may see other supplements listed. Here's a quick summary of them:
Relief Factor Calm (1 capsule)
The Calm supplement is touted to “prevent damage from high cortisol levels” and better manage stress while traveling. Relief Factor Calm contains:
- 350 mg of passion flower leaf (passiflora incarnata)
- 150 mg of phosphatidylserine (from soy)
While no clinical studies on the Calm supplement could be located, passion flower has been shown to reduce anxiety in several studies. Avoid passionflower during pregnancy.
Relief Factor Energy (2 capsules)
The Energy supplement is a combination of:
- B vitamins
- 50 mg of caffeine
- 750 mg of taurine
Caffeine is a well-known stimulant, although the 50 mg found in the Energy supplement is less than what's found in a cup of coffee. Taurine is an amino acid found in many energy drinks, such as 5-Hour Energy. Some research on energy drinks (Red Bull) appears to show they improve some measures of focus. However, it's not clear if it's due to taurine, caffeine, or a combination of other ingredients.
Is Taurine Anti-aging?
Can Taurine Lower Blood Pressure
Relief Factor Sleep (2 capsules)
The Relief Factor Sleep supplement contains:
These ingredients all make sense for a natural sleep aid supplement. GABA has a calming effect on the body as does the amino acid L-theanine. Every cell in your body has receptors for vitamin D as well. In theory, the ingredients may work better together although this needs to be proven with clinical research. You may be able to save money by first trying low-dose melatonin by itself.
Relief Factor Slim (2.5 scoops/ 67 g)
This supplement is not currently listed on the Relief Factor website but it may still be found at various online retail sites. Relief Factor Slim contains:
Acacia gum is a source of soluble fiber, which appears to positively boost microbiome health. Both fiber and protein can slow digestion, stabilize blood sugar and help people feel full longer. So, these ingredients make sense. Green coffee bean extract is a popular weight-loss ingredient found in many supplements. The substance in green coffee thought to promote weight loss is called chlorogenic acid. While some clinical trials demonstrate green coffee bean supplements may promote modest weight loss of 1-3 pounds, not all studies show it works. This author remains skeptical.
Relief Factor Pros & Cons
These are my opinions. Yours may be different.
|No clinical research on Relief Factor itself
|BBB A rating
|No proprietary blends
|Shipping is included on all orders
|No caffeine or other stimulants
|Does not contain NSAIDs
|Refunds only on unopened packages
|Positive customer testimonials
|90-day refund policy