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The dark unseen side of the sports supplements industry

Watchdogs, blogs, review websites and forums


Sometimes we get asked questions like, “This website said your supplements are expensive, or weak... or too strong” or whatever. My answer has remained the same for the last 23 years: “I couldn’t care less”. I am not being flippant. Let me explain why below.

I want to explain something to you. Over the couple of decades+ that I have been in the sports nutrition industry, many many people, companies, websites, forums etc have come and gone. LA Muscle is still here and going strong. There has to be a reason for that. Even independently of whatever your opinion is about LA Muscle, there has to be a reason for a business to be going strong after 23 years in a very competitive industry.

There are several websites out there that call themselves review sites, watchdogs, forums, blogs etc On the face of it, they are there “helping” customers make informed choices. In reality, they are a business, like any other business. They are there to increase their rankings on the web, to drive more traffic and to make money. They get sponsored by various companies to push their products and to criticise the products of those sports nutrition companies that do not pay them. Even if a forum has genuine members, the forum owner chooses the ads and chooses how he responds to posts. I know this because I have owned several forums! This is unfortunate, but it’s the kind of world we live in. Fake news doesn’t just affect actual news. It also creeps into every industry and hijacks real facts and opinions under the guise of unbiased reporting.

You may be saying that they can’t all be out there with a vested interest and you may be right. A few websites may be out there providing a general advice service - at the beginning. But like anything else, they will soon die unless there is a commercial reward for the initiator of that website.

I am saying this to you as someone from the inside. Someone that has worked with lots of these people that have forums and watchdog websites! As soon as we pay them, we get rave reviews! When we don’t pay them, LA Muscle is public enemy number 1!

Independent testing bodies


Another area of the sports nutrition industry that I despise is the so-called “independent bodies” that “test” supplements or “vet” you as a supplement company.

You know my view? They can all go to hell! Once again, ALL of them are money-making machines. There are so many of them, I have lost count. Again, back in the day, we used to pay to be part of this body or that body but soon there were just too many of them. And the unfortunate thing is that customers read about these self-proclaimed “official” bodies and if your brand is not part of them, you are perceived as somewhat not ethical or up to standard.

A few years ago, LA Muscle chose not to be blackmailed by all these various people. There are just too many of them and they are unethical and out for themselves and what they do is immoral. The poor customer thinks they have found a “friend” that can help them make the right choice but in actual fact, they are being coerced by other commercial interests.

I tried to explain this in many ways but it’s like going against the mob! So the best way I found was to just do what we are doing. Continue to make the very best sports nutrition money can buy based on the founding principles of LA Muscle and everything else will fall into place.

Sure, we get blogs, watchdogs, forums etc criticising us because we don’t “sponsor” them or send them constant freebies but I know for a fact that they won’t be around in the future and we will. It’s sad that they mislead so many people and stop them from getting their hands on supplements that can actually make a difference to their goals but we cannot control unscrupulous people. We can sue them and we have successfully done so several times but nowadays we just concentrate on doing the best we can for our customers.

As for all these so-called independent testing bodies and organisations, they can definitely go to hell. I remember distinctly, a few years ago we were part of one of them. Paying them £10k a year just to be listed on their website so customers feel “safe" that we are part of an official body (actually just a business making money). Then after a few years, I thought "screw them"! I am not going to be blackmailed by them any more. Paying them did nothing. THEY did nothing! Just a website that listed lots of supplements companies as “safe” and made money out of them and copy and pasted a whole load of crap every few months and emailed it to everyone within "the body". So I told the owners that LA Muscle will no longer be part of their organisation. Do you know what they said? They said they will “report” all our supplements to all official government bodies unless we continue to pay them!!! Report for nothing but hoping the threat would work or something would stick! Well, I have never taken kindly to threats.

Seriously! Read the above paragraph again if you didn’t grasp it the first time. It’s basically like a protection racket but in the sports nutrition industry! The sad part is that millions of customers worldwide are not aware of this coercion!

I am writing this article to give you an idea of the dark side of the sports nutrition industry. Sure, some unscrupulous smaller sports nutrition companies need checking and monitoring but none of the bodies that currently exist are capable of doing an independent job of that. Most of the websites and unofficial bodies out there are just making money for themselves and misleading customers and guiding them towards the brands that sponsor them.

Why has LA Muscle floated on top of this tide of immoral businesses without being part of them or bowing to their pressures? Because we do things right in the first place. WE make sure we have the best formulas. WE make sure we have the best raw ingredients. WE test our batches and WE have the highest standards in the industry. We don’t need approval from cowboys.

This is why all LA Muscle supplements come with a 100% cast-iron guarantee. If you don’t love them or find that you have got the best results ever, you get all your money back even if you have used the whole tub.

At the end of the day, you are free to read any website, ask for accreditation and make your own choices. I hope this article has at least opened your eyes a little bit that not everything is what you perceive it to be.

Wishing you the best of health, whatever your choices.


Parham Donyai


CEO, Founder

LA Muscle Group

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