UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION
In the Matter of
MAX F. JAMES, individually.
DOCKET NO. C-3857
The Federal Trade Commission, having reason to believe that Max F. James
(respondent") has violated the provisions of the Federal Trade Commission Act, and it
appearing to the Commission that a proceeding by it in respect thereof would be in the
public interest, alleges:
1. Max F. James resides at 1857 Ridgeview Drive, Roseville, CA 95661.
2. Respondent is an "Executive Diamond Team Leader" distributor for New
Vision International, Inc. ("New Vision"). Respondent has advertised, labeled,
offered for sale, sold, and distributed nutritional supplement products, and audiotapes
and other promotional materials for these products, and has engaged in the recruitment of
distributors for the products. The respondent has furnished the means, instrumentalities,
services and facilities for and/or condoned or approved the acts and practices referred to
3. Respondent has been a distributor in a multilevel marketing plan to sell New Vision
products to consumers. The marketing plan allows distributors to earn money by selling the
products at a suggested mark-up to consumers. Respondent has also recruited and trained
other individuals to be distributors in the multilevel marketing plan. Respondent earned
additional money based on purchases from New Vision made by these recruits and others who
they, in turn, recruit to be distributors.
4. Respondent has advertised, promoted, offered for sale, sold, and distributed various
nutritional supplements, including: (a) "PC Grape Seed Extract with an Herbal
Blend;" (b) "Essential Minerals;" and (c) "Multi-Enzymes with
Alfalfa/Barley Sprouts." In some of his promotional materials, respondent
collectively referred to these products as "God's Recipe," and touted them as a
natural alternative to the prescription drug Ritalin for children suffering from Attention
Deficit Disorder or Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder ("ADD/ADHD"). These
products are "'foods' and/or 'drugs'," within the meaning of Sections 12 and 15
of the Federal Trade Commission Act.
5. The acts and practices of respondent alleged in this complaint have been in or
affecting commerce, as "commerce" is defined in Section 4 of the Federal Trade
6. Respondent has disseminated or has caused to be disseminated advertisements for
God's Recipe, including but not necessarily limited to the attached Exhibits A through D.
These advertisements contain the following statements:
A. "The problem: Johnny isn't staying up with the rest of the children, he's
getting into fights at recess and he's just not listening. The teacher has seen it
hundreds of times: ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder) - the most common form of treatment:
Ritalin. Parents trusting the advice of well-meaning professionals are unknowingly
starting their children on a cycle of chemical dependency. Is there an alternative? The
good news is yes, and this tape will outline what has become known as 'God's recipe' as
well as letting you hear from some doctors on this very subject. God's recipe is made up
of three very exciting, natural health products. The three products you'll hear about on
this tape are colloidal minerals, OPC grape seed extract containing ginkgo biloba, and a
multi-enzyme product. This combination is making a huge difference in the lives of
thousands of children and is a natural approach that works....
One out of every three is going to drop out of school and if they carry this into
adulthood, the national statistics are that one out of every ten will attempt suicide, so
my recommendation is a couple of ounces of colloidal minerals each day for these children.
We believe that the anti-oxidant is very important to help clean up the free radical
damage that is going on inside their little brains and we combine that with ginkgo biloba
and then we think that the multi-enzymes to help them metabolize that sugar that they're
going to get -- we just can't seem to eliminate enough of it -- is very important....
I've learned a lot tonight and I very much appreciate your being willing to share all
of this. I think one of the things that I'd like to kind of end with here is as Zoanne
said, "Thank God." And it seems to me that we have properly titled what we're
doing and the success of this formulation, this combination of natural nutritional
supplements with eight, 10, 15 calls I get a day and the hundreds and hundreds of parents
and children now that are benefitting from this, we really can, I think, in good
consciousness call it God's recipe. And what most of us are doing is two ounces of these
colloidal minerals spread during the day, maybe first thing in the morning and then
sometime mid to late afternoon, 40 milligrams of this Proanthocyanidin, preferably one
that comes from grape seed extract in combination with Ginkgo Biloba and we think that you
should take those roughly at the same time that you take the mineral supplementation and
then lastly, because there is no question that sugar is a major culprit in ADHD and ADD,
we need to eliminate sugar as much as possible from all of our diets, but particularly
from the diets of those that are very sensitive and impacted negatively by sugar and in
order to help ease the problem of the sugar that we are unable to eliminate, these
multi-enzyme capsules are phenomenal because as Dr. Chris has told us tonight, they assist
mightily in metabolizing the sugar and getting that whole digestive process and the
reaction of digesting sugar under control so that we don't get the mood swings and the
metabolic swings. So we call that God's recipe. Hopefully, with the information that you
have been kind enough to share with us tonight, the recipe will spread and the resultant
blessing will occur to as many people as possible. So, I would just say, again, thank
(Exhibit A, Transcript of tape entitled "God's Recipe - The Natural Alternative to
B. "[Max F. James] Former Executive VP with Days Inn of America wants to rid the
world of Ritalin, substitute good nutrition and dietary supplements in its place...
I attended a lecture by Dr. Kris Van Oeveren last year, at which time he stated that in
his practice, he often dealt with children who were ADHD. In many cases (but not all), it
was his opinion that these children were unable to adequately process sugar or glucose,
and if you added a good multi-enzyme supplement (one containing sufficient gluco-amylase)
to their diets, that the problems would disappear, or as a minimum. be greatly reduced....
Having watched my son suffer through the anguish and destruction of being on Ritalin
for six years of his life, I was absolutely dumbstruck! I thought, "Are you trying to
tell me that I could have avoided putting my son (and my family) through that nightmare
from hell by simply giving him a 100% natural supplement? I don't believe it!" But
the guilt and sadness of those memories with my son and the family during his formative
years of ages six through twelve would not let this stunning disclosure subside from my
consciousness. I decided to test this idea with friends from Memphis, who had a son, on
Ritalin, and not doing well at all. In fact. he was the same age as my son when our drug
Back to my friends in Tennessee. They agreed to have their son's pediatrician monitor
the reduction of Ritalin over a 30 day period, combined with the addition of certain
natural nutritional supplements. At the end of this test period, they reported that the
Ritalin was no longer being taken and that there had been no negative changes in
Now, hundreds and perhaps many thousands of cases later, parents are hearing glowing
reports of their children' outstanding performances in the academic environment as well as
the social environments in which they are asked to participate. In fact. while I have no
certified statistical evidence to support this conclusion other than anecdotal, I have not
had a single report back to me that even one single child has had to return to Ritalin
after trying a combination of three natural nutritional supplements which I call 'God's
(Exhibit B, "Well Being Journal," Vol V, No. 4, July/August 1996 (Included in
"Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder" pamphlet.))
C. "God's Recipe
1.) 2 ounces of Colloidal Minerals.
2.) 40 milligrams of highly effective antioxidant - OPC capsule combined with Ginkgo
3.) Multi-enzyme capsule with every meal and with every significant snack, as well as
the elimination of as much sugar as possible from the diet.
* See back page for more information
Information on our "God's Recipe" Products
1.) Colloidal Minerals
These are minerals in a delicious liquid form that children of all ages really enjoy.
The minerals are extremely easy for the body to absorb as they are extracted from plant
source deposits of vegetation origin. In fact, the absorption rate in the body of these
minerals is much greater than elemental minerals taken in tablet form. There are over 60
minerals in every 32 ounce bottle.
2.) Antioxidant with Ginkgo Biloba:
This antioxidant is OPC and is derived from the original patented grape seed extract.
It has 50 times more antioxidant potency than vitamin E, and 20 times more than vitamin C.
In combination with Ginkgo Biloba and other herbs, it can have a very positive impact on
As the basis of all metabolic activity, enzymes are the driving force of. our body's
more than 150,000 biochemical reactions. Enzymes are very important for
effectively metabolizing sugars, an activity of critical importance to ADHD control. A
balanced blend of enzymes and minerals maximizes the assimilation of nutrients.
WHEN TO TAKE GOD'S RECIPE
Take one ounce of Colloidal Minerals and 1 capsule (20 milligrams) of the Antioxidant
with Ginkgo Biloba first thing in the morning, and both again mid-to-late
afternoon. Take 1 capsule of Multi-Enzymes with each meal and with each significant snack.
Eliminate sugar throughout the day and evening.
We wish you and your family the best. If you have any questions, or would like to place
an order, please call us at:..."
(Exhibit C, Excerpted from "Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder"
D. "GOD'S RECIPE TESTIMONIALS
'Good evening Mr. James: This is Shondra W. I had talked to you about a month ago to
get information from you about how I could get my son off of Ritalin. And I just wanted
you to know that I have had him completely off Ritalin for the past five days and I
couldn't be more pleased with the way he is doing, he is doing so well. He is such a
pleasure to be with now. And he is feeling better himself, he doesn't even want foods with
sugar. And I just wanted to tell you 'Thank You and I really appreciate all of your help.'
(Shondra W, Texas)
'Dear Max: We started about four and a half months ago and this has been the greatest
four and a half months my son and I have ever had, ever. My son is 6 ½ years old. He was
being brought to my work by the school principle because he was such a severe discipline
problem that he was under consideration to be 'kicked out' of first grade. I was accused
by the school of not being strict enough with my son, not disciplining him enough. It was
right after that meeting with the school teachers and counselors that I started him on the
program (God's Recipe) and we have had perfect behavior since then. He won an award pin
for his perfect behavior and he won an all expense paid vacation from the principle for
perfect behavior for four straight months. His teacher says that she wishes that she could
get this (God's Recipe) for every kid in class. This is the best thing that has ever
happened to us. I thank God that we have this. I really, really do!' (Zoanne,
(Exhibit D, Excerpted from "Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder"
7. Through the means described in Paragraph 6, respondent has represented, expressly or
by implication, that:
- A. God's Recipe can cure, prevent, treat or mitigate Attention Deficit Disorder or its
- B. God's Recipe can cure, prevent, treat or mitigate Attention Deficit Hyperactivity
Disorder or its symptoms.
- C. God's Recipe is an effective alternative treatment to the prescription drug Ritalin
for Attention Deficit Disorder and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.
- D. Testimonials from consumers appearing in the advertisements for God's Recipe reflect
the typical or ordinary experience of members of the public whose children have used the
8. Through the means described in Paragraph 6, respondent has represented, expressly or
by implication, that he possessed and relied upon a reasonable basis that substantiated
the representations set forth in Paragraph 7, at the time the representations were made.
9. In truth and in fact, respondent did not possess and rely upon a reasonable basis
that substantiated the representations set forth in Paragraph 7, at the time the
representations were made. Therefore, the representation set forth in Paragraph 8 was, and
is, false or misleading.
10. The acts and practices of respondent as alleged in this complaint constitute unfair
or deceptive acts or practices, and the making of false advertisements, in or affecting
commerce in violation of Section 5(a) and 12 of the Federal Trade Commission Act.
THEREFORE, the Federal Trade Commission this third day of March, 1999, has issued this
complaint against respondent.
By the Commission.
Donald S. Clark