ASA clocks unauthorized claims in Nutritional Sciences Ltd ad

London-based brand Nutritional Sciences Ltd published the ads on a news website on Jan.7 and Apr.6, 2024, but after the ASA received complaints about the claims made, it ruled the ads must not appear again in their current form. 

The advert

The advert was presented as an online advertorial with a main heading: “NHS arthritis expert reveals #1 ‘joint-destroying’ mistake Brits make every morning”.

It showed a photograph of someone sitting in a chair, accompanied by the text ‘Joint Doctor Begs Seniors To ‘Repair’ Joints With This Tip – Nutritional Science Ltd. – Sponsored’. The photograph contained a link to the advertiser’s website. 

Text underneath stated: “’Your joints can heal themselves at any age’ – That’s according to Dr Paul O’Connell, the NHS’s leading joint expert […] Human cartilage can regrow, just like hair and nails. And this ‘self-healing’ mechanism can reverse YEARS of arthritis and joint damage”.

A link in the advertorial went to another page on the same website. The page featured a photograph of a man with the caption “Dr. Paul O’Connell – GP & Rehabilitation Engineer,” and a 20-minute video in which Dr O’Connell discussed the Activ8 Joint Complete supplement. 

The tab took readers to a survey and then a purchase page for the product. The text stated: “Relieves soreness, stiffness, and discomfort – Prevents inflammation, damaged cartilage, and bone decay – Facilitates joint repair & recovery – Improves movement and flexibility”.