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Gluten Dude

Jason is the CEO of The Wise Alternative, the company that promotes and sells Gluten Relief, the miracle solution that “allows even the most severe celiacs to consume gluten and stay healthy” (his words, not mine).

Note: As of August 17, 2012, I have been legally required to change all references of Gluten Relief to Gluten Sensitivity since it turns out Jason violated a trademark by using that name. You can read about it here.

This post is based on Jason’s comment on my previous post a few days ago where I first talked about Gluten Sensitivity.

This is going to be a long post, so bear with me as I want to get all the facts out to the public.

If you have not read the first part of this aggravating topic, read it here, and especially read Jason’s comment toward the bottom of the post, and then come on back.

——————————

Thanks for your response Jason.

Look…I wish you were right. I wish there were a cure for celiac disease. We all do. If you can convince me that I’m wrong, I will totally tip my hat to you.

But I know, and pretty much every realistic person out there knows, that your product and especially your marketing message is pure bunk.

I am not looking to do battle with you. But when I see something so utterly detrimental to the entire celiac community, with claims so dangerous that I believe they could border on illegal, you damn well better believe I’m going to stand up for my people.

You asked for an open and honest discussion. I am all for it.

But in order for something to be open and honest, it has to based on facts. I didn’t see too many facts in your response.

So how about these facts?

FACT: There is no cure for celiac disease. There is not one medical expert alive who will deny this.

FACT: The only treatment for celiac disease is a 100% gluten-free diet. An amount as small as 1/8 the size of your fingernail can cause an autoimmune reaction.

FACT: You say that people who have taken Gluten Sensitivity report that they are able to eat anything they wish, including items that were before intolerable. Yet there are no documented cases of these people.

FACT: Your website at one time stated that “You may eat anything you wish while taking and after finishing the formula.  It is a 30 day bottle, one time only, never to be taken again.  One bottle has successfully treated more than 600 people from “silent” celiacs, to those who became violently ill at the slightest contamination.”

Now you say that three bottles may be needed…an extra $300 in your pocket. How convenient.

FACT: Gluten Relief was developed in 2005 and seven years later, you still say testing “is in progress” and not one person in the medical community has backed your product.

FACT: Your double-blind study is published in a non-peer reviewed journal, which means it is MUCH less trustworthy than a peer-reviewed journal.

FACT: You used to have a money back guarantee that 1 bottle would do it and you would also refund the fee for the test! Then you changed it to 3 bottles and no test refund.

FACT: Your test pilot study states that “Dr. Wise [the non-doctor who invented Gluten Relief] is a clinician who felt that it was his calling to…help those needing a cure for Celiac Disease.

I repeat…a cure for celiac disease.

FACT: On celiac.com, there is a forum asking for recommended celiac doctors in various states. A forum member called “Sleeping Celiac”, who has exactly one comment on the entire forum, responded with the following:

I recommend Dr. Jack Wise NMD, Tulsa, OK. He is wonderful!!

I was an undiagnosed celiac with GI issues and moderate to severe arthritis. After his solution I can eat anything I wish with no trouble at all as well as improvements with joint pain and GI issues! I also dated a woman during this same time that was a severe celiac who can now eat anything she pleases.

Thank you,
Jason

I’m not saying this is you Jason (but couldn’t you have at least changed your name?).

FACT: You state that “we have had many thousands of people take Gluten Relief successfully with all manner of Gluten sensitivity and Celiac disease. The majority tell us that they have returned to their normal diet with no problems.”

Where is the proof Jason? Do you have any f*cking idea how dangerous this claim is?

Celiacs hate celiac. They’d do anything NOT to have celiac disease.

And here you come in like a big hero saying “Hey, we’ve got a product that will take care of all your worries.”

Do you even realize how evil this is? Can you fathom how you are playing to people’s emotions and totally taking advantage of them?

People want to believe…even though it’s not realistic. And you take advantage of them.

FACT: You’ve done no serious studies. Period. You even state yourself that “we look forward to a biopsy of a serious celiac someday, both before and after taking Gluten Relief.”

What’s the rush Jason? It’s only been 7 years.

AND ONE FINAL FACT: I am going to do everything in my power to get this product off the market and to shut your ass down. You are giving celiacs false hope. And worse than that, you may be leading them to an early death.

I’ll sleep well tonight knowing I live my life trying to do some kind of good…trying to have some kind of positive influence in this cold world we sometimes live in.

How do you sleep at night?

These are the facts Jason. Please feel free to dispute as you wish.

As we agreed…open and honest.

54 thoughts on “Gluten Sensitivity Scam…Continued

  1. Jason was third or fourth person to follow me on twitter may back in October. You might remember how you were my tenth (after I begged a lot!)

    At the time, I checked out his site and saw the scam. I did not follow back and blocked him. I was new and desperate for followers and I blocked a guy with 4000. It wasn’t worth it.

    I know you have to follow him to exchange DMs, but everyone else should check their lists and unfollow this guy. At least 10 of the people I follow also follow him.

    Twitter works on a ratio of followers to followees. This means that you can only follow so many more people than follow you. It would be nice if we could get his follower count low enough so that he can’t follow anyone else and introduce his scam.

    Of course, twitter isn’t really that important in the grand scheme of things. I would hope that these bold claims can get some FDA heat on them.

    You have said a lot of really good things, but “Celiacs hate celiac. They’d do anything NOT to have celiac disease.” is the most true. You are right to keep up this level of pressure.

  2. “You may eat anything you wish while taking and after finishing the formula.”

    Well, even I can say that (in my experience) it’s simply not true. Having taken the formula for just over a month, three weeks into the protocol I was exposed to gluten in a white sauce (very innocently). Sure enough, I was ‘glutened’ (not as badly as normal but that could also be by chance alone).

    But truly, I hate to think of what could have happened had I taken a bite of pizza the first day I was on it. I’ll persist with it, but believe me my review on it will be honest.

      • Well, I’m finished with my third bottle now. I guess I’m supposed to wait six (6) months now and see how I go. Though possibly not as bad as before I still seem to react to gluten. Even after three bottles?!

        Didn’t realise Jason previously refunded the test fee as well as Gluten Relief but doesn’t anymore. I’d like to see his explanation for this, as I’m sure lots of us would. Thanks for the discussion here.

  3. Very well said, Dude. I applaud you for taking this subject by the horns and not sugarcoating anything. Now I have to check to see if this “Jason” is following me on Twitter, too! People who scam are also very good actors: they act like they are truly concerned about you and care about you. At the same time, they play guilt trips on us, making us feel like we’re ungrateful, mean-spirited bastards. It’s just another one of their tricks up their sleeves: always trying to play Mr. Nice Guy. The Quackwatch website at http://www.quackwatch.com warns you about these scam artists always trying to play Mr. Nice Guy by sounding overly sincere and concerned. It’s just another one of their “tactics” for drawing in victims.

  4. One of the “further tests” they mention is colonoscopy. There is no way to determine if someone has Celiac Disease via colonoscopy. The small intestine isn’t viewed that way. You have to have an Esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD) to see the small intestine, and even at that you can only see the upper portion.

    Even my gp knows that much about medicine. Hell, even my sister knows that much, and she refuses to get tested because she doesn’t want to know…

  5. Dear Jason: I find it odd that as the CEO of a company, you wouldn’t fully identify yourself. Your last name is….? After some research, I will presume you are Jason Timmons, author of many blog posts on thewisealternative.com. Your LinkedIn profile indicates you have a BS, Engineering Design Tech from Northeastern State University. Please explain to me how this qualifies you for the natural health field and hawking so-called treatments for Celiac Disease. Please, convince me.

  6. Thank you for the wonderfully worded post. We need to get the word out so no one can fall for this scam. It is true life would be so much easier without celiac but because of our disease we eat a more varied, interesting, and healthy diet. Celiac has made most of aware that we are what we eat and some of us cannot eat gluten. Most people eat just to eat without a care yet are not as healthy as we are. I count that as a blessing! Thank God for celiac, it has made me a better person!

  7. I was totally infuriated with Jason’s response to the matter re the money back guarantee. He tells me that “In the early days we did refer to one bottle in our money back guarantee although I’m not aware of ever paying for the test. To my knowledge that has always been the responsibility of the patient. A test group patient was found to need a third bottle who was an extremely advanced Gluten intolerant thus prompting the change.”

    What does he mean by a “test group patient”?

    I was really upset because it appears that he was cheating his customers that had already taken the product (and might not come back to the website) by making the change! Clearly, at best (as shown in the double blind study), not all of these people will have recovered, even if they remain symptom free. What will it be next, five, six, seven or a withdrawal of the guarantee altogether (i.e. taking the money and running (as Health Canada suggests))?

    I’m being open, and honest here. I would just like some straight answers.

    BTW, anyone here find a picture of Dr. Wise? Seems peculiar that I can’t even put a face to the name. :?

  8. I am absolutely speechless by this guys claim. What I do know for fact – there was a baker AND a chef, who both knowingly marked items “gluten free” and sold them/served them to people requesting gluten free meals, as they thought a “gluten free” diet was a joke, not understanding those of us with Celiac Disease can die. The baker, received TWELVE years in jail. I say we all report this guy – guaranteed he’ll be doing time in jail on what would it be, attempted murder? Attempted manslaughter? He is knowingly and willingly poisoning people – he needs to be put away.

    • I agree 100% Kelly, but the law in the U.S. is not in our favor on this one. But I’ve got ideas. Boy…do I have some ideas.

  9. This reminds me of some of the stuff Dr. Mercola preaches. What about the FDA? Not only am I celiac, but so are both my children. More fuel to the fight. Let me know your ideas, I am in with the efforts to shut this guy down.

    • It’s selling fear disguised as hope…all for a dollar. Sad. Actually, pathetic.

      I’m not sure how much the FDA can do but I will find out.

  10. Perhaps people with Celiac also need to understand that there is NO CURE for this disease. Gluten Free diet is the ONLY thing we can do…There is NO MAGIC PILL or EASY ANSWER! Celiac disease is more than upset stomaches more than diarrea more than vomiting IT IS MORE THAN JUST AN ANNOYANCE… IT CAN KILL N CRIPPLE! CELIACS….. STOP PATRONIZING THIS PRODUCT!! Be realistic! This guy, this company is selling snake oil! U may nt hv the symptoms if u take this BUT U WILL STILL B GETTING THE DAMAGE AND U R STILL BEING POISONED BY THE INGESTION OF THE GLUTEN! Do not be fooled by the absence of symptoms!

  11. Actually, we should report him to the FDA.. They have some strong rules about what people can claim without appropriate testing and I can’t imagine that claiming to “cure” a disease wouldn’t be one of those.

    Also, thanks for sharing about this important issue.

  12. Actually Christa ur correct… Nutella wz just called out on something similar … Activia wz called out for false claims….

      • Anything we can do to get him sent to jail, or at least shut down…I’m ready!

        Also, print out anything on his blogs or websites that you see – print screen them, whatever as proof. He is pathetic enough to change it then say it wasn’t there. Scum!

  13. Just to add: This is priceless information! Something that everyone should read before even considering trying the product. I think that if you’ve ordered the product after reading this you’re honestly pretty naive!

    Jason works is the CEO of an Internet natural health company. He continually criticises modern conventional medicine and its malpractice yet never acknowledges the limitations of the Natural Health Field.

    To be honest, if I had not seen this after all the other blog entries and garbage posted by J&L Health, I would have started to assume that he really was interested in the health and well being of Coeliacs.

    Thanks again Gluten Dude for bringing out the history of this brand.

    I hope that someone here can link this up to all the articles and forum posts Jason and others have been trying to fool the intelligence of Coeliacs.

    GLUTEN RELIEF FAQ VIDEO:

    “Avoiding all gluten isn’t possible. The body is always in a state of inflammation.”

    “When you take gluten relief, you feel secure in knowing that an accidental or occasional contamination is not going to cause you a problem.”

    How do you know this? Where’s the proof? Is this just another unsubstantiated sales push? Clearly so!
    :? :? :? :?

    I think that by now Jason probably knows that when he sees the name GFHardy an accusatory/attacking but potentially frank comment is awaiting him.

    FDA has a whole website devoted to health fraud scams. There are videos on it. I loved the one with the lady and the man and those “diabetic pills”. :D

    Such a shame that there are no videos/articles from their channel on celiac disease. But with this product and it’s online claims, it may not be long until some serious legal action is taken against The Wise Alternative.

    The claims on the bottle label itself are rather conservative.

    INDICATIONS: For temporary relief of symptoms associated with constipation, bloating, diarrhea, and other symptoms of poor digestion.

    Why are the claims on their website so different to this?

    HERE ARE SOME TRUTHFUL, HONEST FACTS:

    J&L Health also indicated in a blog post in 2010: “If you have taken Dr. Wise’s Formula II Intestinal Calm (now known as Gluten Relief) for your celiac disease you may eat gluten without worry.”

    He also told those (in another post) that had taken the formula for their celiac disease that they could use the regular shortbread buttermilk cookie recipe with wheat flour.

    THESE WERE IN REFERENCE TO ONE BOTTLE ONLY!!!

    You then said that 70% required one bottle, 20% required two bottles and 10% required a third bottle.

    Now you say that 60-70% require one bottle, 20-30% require two bottles and the remaining ?% require a third bottle.

    “The Greater the Power, the Greater the Fall”

  14. What is jason’s twitter name? I just went through my following list and saw a few Jason’s but pretty sure they weren’t him but just want to make sure.

  15. Good work Dude! People shouldn’t get away with scamming others when your health and well being are at stake. It’s morally wrong!

    I’d love to bust ‘em all!

  16. GF Dude – good work on exposing this scam. This reminds me of a case I was involved with from 2009 – 2011 involving Paul Seelig of Great Specialty Products. This guy was a fraud who purchased regular wheat bakery products and then repackaged and resold them to folks advertised as Gluten Free. This case occurred in North Carolina and Paul was sentenced a year ago to more than a decade in prison. Wake County got him on felony “Obtaining property via false pretense” charges – basically taking people’s money by using fraudulent Gluten Free marketing claims. I’d venture to guess, your guy could be pursued in the same manner. The case here in Raleigh, NC was a lot of effort for those involved and needs to stand as an example for others. Feel free to use our hard work to pursue others who need a deterrent.

    You can read all about the case here -> http://glutenfreeraleigh.blogspot.com/search/label/Great%20Speciality%20Products

    Zach
    Gluten Free Raleigh

    • Thanks Zach. I’d be interested in speaking with you to see what steps were taken to bring him down.

  17. Man will I be happy if you figure out a way to take these people down. I’m happy to assist in any way I can :) Anything to get this dangerous product off the market. You are what we would refer to in the UK as a legend ;)

  18. Thanks for the comments. Some of your points I will address in one comment as they share the same thread or are covered by much the same answer.

    To your first point. “There is no cure for Celiac disease”. and also another point “Your test pilot study states that “Dr. Wise is a clinician who felt that it was his calling to…help those needing a cure for Celiac Disease….I repeat a cure for celiac disease”

    I understand the frustration that you must feel. I talk to people every day from all over the world. However you overlook a couple of critical points…. You turn to the medical community, of which I have great respect, for validation and proof of a belief that there is no way to address such a condition when a startling number have TO THIS DAY not even acknowledged said problem. Testing methods are in large part inaccurate and inconsistent as is well known.

    How many have received negative test results (serological, genetic, biopsy and more) and were told by their specialist that there was nothing wrong or it was stress, pet or perfume allergies, etc, etc.?? A large percentage for certain. These people removed gluten from their diet and confirmed what their doctor(s) could not.

    As to your referral to the word “cure” in the pilot study summary. As I stated in a previous comment and have clearly posted on our website. “We as a natural health company cannot use the word cure and have not done so. J.E. Block MD, FACP uses the word in the study summary in his capacity as a medical professional of 50 years, noted author and former professor.” It is front and center before one ever clicks the link to the study.

    To more points that you mention. “You say that people who have taken Gluten Relief report that they are able to eat anything they wish, including items that were before intolerable. Yet there are no documented cases of these people.” as well as “Your website at one time stated that “You may eat anything you wish while taking and after finishing the formula. It is a 30 day bottle, one time only, never to be taken again. One bottle has successfully treated more than 600 people from “silent” celiacs, to those who became violently ill at the slightest contamination.”
    Now you say that three bottles may be needed…an extra $300 in your pocket. How convenient.”

    Patient and customer confidentiality is paramount as you well know. Even multinational companies with study groups in the 10′s of thousands do not publish identities.

    There was at least one patient who required a third bottle for his test numbers to fall in the acceptable range. Some people have a greater receptivity to what they put into their body whether it be aspirin, blood pressure meds or gluten.
    The Money Back Guarantee assures you peace of mind with a laboratory test which absolutely no other company in the world would match…or even dream of offering.

    As to your statement regarding a comment on a celiac forum. I cannot comment on something without being aware of a link to said comment.

    Some more points in your article… “Gluten Relief was developed in 2005 and seven years later, you still say testing “is in progress” and not one person in the medical community has backed your product.
    Your double-blind study is published in a non-peer reviewed journal, which means it is MUCH less trustworthy than a peer-reviewed journal.”

    Gluten Relief was initially developed in 2005. It was not brought to market until several years later as we became aware of the results, both formal (Pilot Study) and informal of taking the product. After the results were published it was brought to market on a larger scale.
    The pilot study results speak for themselves and have prompted great interest of a larger, independent study which will be eagerly reviewed by MD’s as it unfolds.

    I commend you for changing the tone of your article (bad language, comments and innuendo excluded) and have no problem having a discussion with you. I’m certain you are a good person to know and be around and I have no ill will whatsoever. There are factors in play that you are not aware of and we cannot disclose as of yet.

    If we wanted to make money we would develop a product that a person had to take forever…. much as is done for virtually every other product (prescription) that you could think of. The debate is interesting and the time and effort involved in such a product is more than you can imagine and we look forward to it.

    I’ll check back as time allows and wish you a good day.

    Thanks again.

  19. Jason – your money back guarantee doesn’t make sense for a Celiac – we don’t test for gluten antibodies that way (via Enterolab Fecal Anti-Gliadin IgA test). The gold standard Celiac antibody test (to show whether the body is making antibodies against gluten and thus causing small intestine villi damage) is often referred to as a celiac panel and includes testing for anti-endomysial antibody (lgA EMA) and anti-gliadin antibody (lgA & IgG), and tissue transglutaminase (tTG IgA).

    Can you explain this? Why doesn’t your guarantee include this testing method instead? If Gluten Relief really worked, those of us with celiac could prove it was working by having this test (if we were dumb enough to ignore a real doctor and try it). If you knew anything about celiac, you’d know that we regularly get this screening test to make sure the GF diet is working.

    Also, to answer your statement in the last comment “If we wanted to make money we would develop a product that a person had to take forever”… a scam artist only needs the scammed to buy the product 1 time (for $140 in your case). If you’ve sold to 5,000 dummies that’s $700,000. That’s making money in my book.

    The problem with trying to scam celiacs is that we have become medical experts on the disease. You can’t fool us.

  20. Dear Jason,
    I am sorry that people in the world find it necessary to benefit from the suffering of others. And trust me when I say celiacs SUFFER! We have our good days and our bad days and then we have our “glutened” days. We are an educated, intelligent group of people who have to learn to sniff out gluten from a mile away in order to protect ourselves. The fact that someone like you and your company would encourage celiacs to take an unproven “supplement” and then eat something that to us is toxic is astounding. I am not sure how you sleep at night! I don’t know about the others on this forum but to me your rebuttal was nothing but a bunch of words strewn together in another attempt to obfuscate the problem. You said nothing and offered no proof or evidence whilst hiding behind the cloak of patient confidentiality. Another thing I have learned to sniff out over the years is a snake oil salesman!

  21. Jason. The more you attempt to justify your claim, the more of a joke and an ass you make yourself out to be. The others said it right. Us celiacs are very well read and educated. I ask this question. Do you have a soul? If so, how do you sleep at night consciously knowing that by your hand you are harming people and can kill them? You are sick.

  22. Jason, I stand with all of the other people here. We are much more educated about this disease than many doctors and to think that we would suddenly throw our arms into the air and start ingesting your magic potion, you are sorely mistaken! However, there are always those who are vulnerable to scams and you prey on their weakness. I noticed that you were following me on Twitter and guess what? I blocked you! You obviously have very little to no regard for humanity. I will refuse to be one of your “victims.”

  23. Jason… I have to agree the Celiac community is a highly educated group because…we have to be… to stay alive n healthy. I would be interested to know if you have ever watched someone suffer from this disease? Either with DH or Gluten Ataxia? If you have and you would actually tell them to INGEST GLUTEN… I feel sorry for you… I believe there is a special place reserved for people like you… I hear its pretty warm too.

  24. J & L Health Julie Sabo Strehle the ingredients can be found on our website, http://www.TheWiseAlternative.com I’ll attempt to copy and paste it here… The descriptions and intended use of ingredients can be found on the website on the pilot study summary. “Active” ingredients:
    1. Lycopodium clavatum 12x
    2. Pulsatilla 12x

    Inactive ingredients
    1. Aronia Berry
    2. L?Carnosine
    3. Capsule (Gelatin)
    4. DNA (Deoxyribonucleic acid)
    5. RNA (Ribonucleic acid)
    6. Rice Flour
    7. Vitamin D3 (fromCholecalciferol)
    8. Folic acid

    This is what was on Jason’s facebook page. Does anyone know how you can have “DNA” as an ingredient? DNA from what??? From wheat? Wheat has DNA. So does a pig liver. My point is that these are generic ingredients that look like a child came up with big “sciency” words.

    How about some full disclosure Jason??

  25. Thanks for the info. It is true that there are some true facts & some are only myths. Gluten relief scams have to be reported. people who have taken Gluten Relief report that they are able to eat anything they wish, including items that were before intolerable.

  26. Hi all,

    I stumbled across this thread and in the interests of accurate information I wanted to add some real world experience.

    I am 50, and gluten intolerant. My brother 3 years younger is full-blown celiac. My intolerance manifest as diarrhea, intestinal spasms and severe pain.

    I will explain what I mean by pain: on several occasions the bowel spasms and accompanying electrolyte imbalance caused my kidneys to shut down. At the hospital emergency room the ER doctor was convinced that I had scoliosis because the intestinal cramps were so severe that they curved my spine to one side. The pain was just one notch below passing out. (I have passed out from pain before so I have a reference point).

    After my brother was diagnosed cilia, I started a GF and lactose diet and was immediately better. No cramps, normal bowl movements, and a level of mental alertness that I have not enjoyed in years.

    I have never been diagnosed. I saw/see no need. It is clear to me that I prefer to live GF. I do occasionally eat gluten through carelessness, and the effects are immediate and very painful. So I was interested when I noticed the local health food store advertising Natural Factors Gluten Relief just after one of these accidental ingestions. I was in a lot of pain and purchased the pills with no hesitation.

    I am not sure if the NF GR is the same as the Dr. Wise and/or AST GR, but it looks like the same.

    It relieved about 75-85% of my pain within an hour.

    I started taking them daily. I started feeling even more alert and energetic than ever. If GF was 100%, I now feel 11%.

    I deliberately ate some gluten to see what would happen. I had the diarrhea, but no pain and no mental cloudiness. I intent to stay GF, for obvious reasons, but I also intend to keep taking the pills because they protect me against accidental ingestion, and just generally make me feel better than without.

    I am a pretty cartesian guy. I am a computer guy, and not given to fads. In fact I am pretty sceptical of most things so I like to believe that this is not a placebo effect – although I could be wrong of course.

    My name is Adam Wasserman, I live in Montreal, and I am easily findable on Google for anyone who wishes to verify my identity, and verify that it is really me posting this and not some shill.

    I am sensitive to the fact that there is no cure for Ciliac disease, and I am sensitive to the harm that inaccurate or false advertising can do. I also believe that the best cure for bad information is good information, and it is in that spirit that I have taken the time to write. It is my experience that Gluten Relief does *something* good, and I have tried to describe what that something is accurately and honestly.

  27. Well done for taking the time an effort to try & stop this scam. I applaud you. It is unacceptable for him to try and sell this product. I have followed your link & left a negative comment on his webpage.

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