A reader who is very active in the community asked me to review this patented dietary supplement marketed by LifeVantage Corporation. The reader wrote:
“I wonder if you have come across this supplement at all? It contains a blend of herbs that is supposed to up regulate nrf2. A handful of MECFS patients have taken it an experienced temporary remissions lasting about four months at which time it ceases to work.
I just started taking it four days ago and now have a raging fever/sore throat/sinus congestion. It is my first time having a normal immune response to a common virus since getting sick five years ago. It’s possible it’s a coincidence but I find that highly unlikely. My husband also has a cold (I think I caught it from him) but generally when he gets sick I just have a worsening of my ME symptoms or experience no change at all:”
My initial impression (aka hypothesis) is that it may deal with some vector of bacteria. It is effective against the general bacteria it impacts, but then those that have natural resistance starts multiplying and fill the vacuum of the killed bacteria. This pattern is common with antibiotics and antivirals. It is also why I strongly advocate rotate-rotate-rotate!
The nice thing about a patent supplement is that a patent has been filed and may be read. The patent is US20050226942 and filed in March 2005.
- “induce the body’s production of the antioxidants SOD, CAT, and GPX,”
The ingredients in the current product are:
Milk thistle (Silybum marianum) extract (225 mg)
- 2015 PubMed Summary as anitoxidant
- ” We demonstrated that silymarin shows antibacterial and antiadherent/antibiofilm activity against certain standard [gram positive] bacterial strains which may be beneficial when used as a dietary supplement or a drug.” 
- Synergistic effects between silibinin and antibiotics on methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus isolated from clinical specimens .
- Bacopa (Bacopa monniera) extract (150 mg)
- “Bacopa monnieri extract and its compound luteolin have a significant antimicrobial activity against Staphylococcus aureus” 
- Neurological impact: Cognition Enhancing and Neuromodulatory Propensity of Bacopa monniera Extract Against Scopolamine Induced Cognitive Impairments in Rat Hippocampus .
- “BME showed antimicrobial activity against skin pathogens,” 
- Molecular docking and inhibition studies on the interactions of Bacopa monnieri‘s potent phytochemicals against pathogenic Staphylococcus aureus. — see my last article on S.aureus vaccines!
- “a butanolic extract of Bacopa monnieri showed maximum inhibitory activity against the human pathogen Escherichia coli,” 
- Note: E.Coli is extremely low in most CFS patients… so not good
- Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) root (150 mg)
- Evaluating the inhibitory potential of Withania somnifera on platelet aggregation and inflammation enzymes: An in vitro and in silico study .
- Antibacterial activity of Withania somnifera against Gram-positive isolates from pus samples .
- Inhibition of the emergence of multi drug resistant Staphylococcus aureus by Withania somniferaroot extracts.
- Green tea (Camellia sinensis) extract (75 mg)
- Antimicrobial activity of different tea varieties available in Pakistan. ” P. aeruginosa was most susceptible… against C. albicans, green tea and lemon grass exhibited significant activity”
- Assessment of Bioautography and Spot Screening of TLC of Green Tea (Camellia) Plant Extracts as Antibacterial and Antioxidant Agents . “The maximum inhibition of Staphylococcus aureus was recorded by dimethyl sulphoxide extracts of green tea varieties.”
- Turmeric (Curcuma Ionga) extract (75 mg)
All of these are familiar in treating CFS except for Bacopa.
Method of Action
The product is sold for it’s anti-oxidant characteristics. Examining the ingredients one by one, we discover that every ingredient also has anti-bacterial properties. Staphylococcus aureus showed up for every ingredient— and given that a Staphylococcus aureus vaccine results in a significant recovery rate (as long as booster shots are given), the improvement reported appears very creditable.
Similarly, it stop working around 4 months is also very creditable because “antibiotic resistance” to these herbs would build up.
While the anti-E.Coli aspect is not ideal, this mixture (or mixing your own from bulk powder) for up to ONE MONTH – is well worth trying. After one month, you should rotate to prevent resistant varieties arising. I would suggest at least 1 three month break at least, and preferably 6 months.
In a future post, I will drill down into herbs effective against Staphylococcus aureus in the hope of producing a potential rotation list.
NOTE: I am NOT saying that Staphylococcus aureus is the cause. What I am suggesting is that what is effective against Staphylococcus aureus, is reasonably effective against the bacteria involved.