About Revive Reds by Kara MD
By delivering a highly concentrated combination of 100 percent natural, polyphenol-rich berries, super-fruits, and other nutrients, Revive Reds by Kara MD is a powdered dietary supplement that promises to help reduce fatigue, boost energy, and improve overall health.
The company tells us that this science-backed, doctor formulated blend also contains metabolism-igniting natural compounds, and delivers all of these benefits without having to worry about the dangerous side effects of prescription drugs.
To use, you’ll mix one small scoop of berry-flavored Revive Reds with eight ounces of water, or your favorite beverage, and drink first thing in the morning. Because it’s a liquid, Kara MD tells us your body will absorb its recharging ingredients much faster than capsules.
According to a 2013 report by the Centers for Disease Control, between 10 and 15 percent of men and women reported often feeling very tired or exhausted. If you count yourself among these numbers—or are just looking for a natural pick-me-up—will a polyphenol-based product like Revive Reds make a difference?
And if so, could you realistically expect it to help provide the same energy levels you experienced in your twenties, as claimed on the website? Let’s help you find fact-based answers, starting with some science essentials.
What Are Polyphenols & How Do They Relate to Fatigue?
Healthline explains that polyphenols are plant-based micronutrients packed with antioxidants that may “improve or help treat digestion issues, weight management difficulties, diabetes, neurodegenerative disease, and cardiovascular diseases,” as well as reduce the development of osteoporosis and certain cancers.
In addition to the berries and fruits commonly found in supplements, polyphenols are also found in high concentrations in beans, nuts (especially hazelnuts, pecans, and almonds), vegetables (artichokes, chicory, spinach), soy, black and green tea, and red wine, to name just a few.
But, can polyphenols reduce fatigue and increase energy, as advertised on the Revive Reds website?
While sites like the Natural Medicines Database, WebMD, and Examine.com didn’t provide a summarization of the available clinical evidence for polyphenols in general, we located 55 polyphenol-fatigue studies through the National Institutes of Health’s PubMed at the time of our research.
Most of these were conducted using mice and rats, and those conducted on humans often related to a specific type of polyphenol (e.g., cocoa, Polygonatum Alte-lobatum Hayata rhizomes, apple, pomegranate extract, curcumin, and so forth).
What about the specific nutrients found in Revive Reds? Do they have more clinical support for specifically reducing fatigue?
Taking a Closer Look at Revive Reds’ Ingredients
Per the supplement facts label listed on the Kara MD website, Revive Reds contains the following ingredients:
- Thiamin 45 mg
- Riboflavin 1.7 mg
- Niacin 20 mg
- Vitamin B6 2 mg
- Folate 400 mcg
- Vitamin B12 6 mcg
- Biotin 300 mcg
- Pantothenic Acid 10 mg
- Selenium 700 mcg
- Chromium 200 mcg
- Polyphenol Blend 2,400 mg: Cherry, Carrot, Papaya, Aronia Berry Extract, Green Mango, Mulberry Fruit, European Black Currant Fruit Extract, Apple, Beet Root, Cranberry Fruit Extract, Acai Fruit Extract, Strawberry, Grape Skin Extract, Blueberry Fruit Concentrate, Pomegranate, Blackberry, Acerola Fruit Extract, Pineapple Extract, Cantaloupe, Grape, Watermelon, Lemon, Peach
- Metabolic Boosting Blend 465 mg: Shilajit Extract, Ginger Root, Cinnamon Bark Extract, Green Tea Extract, White Tea Extract, Turmeric Extract, Bitter Melon Extract, Black Pepper Fruit Extract
- Probiotic & Prebiotic Digestive Support Blend 100 mg:
- Organic Blue Agave Inulin 100 mg
- Bacillus Infantis, Bifidobacterium Longum, Lactobacillus Rhamnosus, L. Reuteri HA-188, Lactobacillus Acidophilus 3 billion CFU
Other ingredients include Rebaudioside A ( a generic name for Stevia sweetener).
Note: In the Revive Reds Commercial, Dr. Kara mentions an ingredient named Cellogen, although nothing was listed on the label and we didn’t encounter any relevant references on third-party sites. We emailed customer support for additional details, but hadn’t heard back at the time of publishing.
With this in mind, let’s break these ingredients into digestible bites for easier reference.
Revive Reds’ Vitamins & Minerals
According to their summarizations of the available clinical evidence, sites like the Natural Medicines Database, WebMD, and Examine.com report that all of the vitamins and minerals listed on Revive Reds’ label are important for human health. For example (chosen at random):
- 200-500 mcg of folic acid per day may help address age-related vision loss, depression, and high blood pressure
- 2.5 mg of daily vitamin B12 may help prevent an eye disease called age-related macular degeneration
- 100-200 mcg of selenium can lower abnormally high cholesterol levels
- 50-1,000 mcg of chromium can lower blood sugar and cholesterol
However, according to the Centers for Disease Control, only between two and 10.5 percent of American men and women are deficient in vitamins like vitamin A, vitamin E, folate, vitamin B12, vitamin C, iron, vitamin D, or vitamin B6.
And unless you’re deficient, organizations like the National Institutes of Health and the American Academy of Family Physicians emphasize that supplementation likely won’t provide meaningful benefits.
Revive Reds’ Polyphenol Blend
Although we learned that polyphenols contain high levels of antioxidants that could potentially benefit health, we didn’t encounter any recommended dosage details on authoritative sites during our research.
And even if a recommended dosage existed, the Healthline article cited above emphasizes: “Factors that influence activity of polyphenols in the body include metabolism, intestinal absorption, and the bioavailability of the polyphenol. Although some foods may have higher polyphenol levels than others, this does not necessarily mean that they are absorbed and used at higher rates.”
Metabolic Boosting Blend in Revive Reds
According to a different Healthline article, “Shilajit is a sticky substance found primarily in the rocks of the Himalayas. It develops over centuries from the slow decomposition of plants. Some studies indicate it may have positive benefits [no dosages provided] for Alzheimer’s, low testosterone, chronic fatigue syndrome, iron deficiency anemia, and heart health.”
340-550 mg of ginger may also help address osteoarthritis and nausea; 150-2,500 mg of green tea could be beneficial for high cholesterol, coronary artery disease, high blood pressure, osteoporosis, ovarian cancer, and Parkinson’s disease; while 1.4-2 g of turmeric might also address high cholesterol, as well as osteoarthritis.
Ingredients in Revive Reds’ Probiotic & Prebiotic Digestive Support Blend
Inulin is a starchy substance found in a variety of fruits, vegetables, and herbs that may—when taken in daily doses of 10-20g—help lower triglycerides and reduce constipation. It can also act as a food source for bacteria.
Specifically, strains like Bacillus Infantis, Bifidobacterium Longum, Lactobacillus Rhamnosus, L. Reuteri HA-188, and Lactobacillus Acidophilus have been clinically shown to help address many different digestion-related issues, including irritable bowel disease (IBD), bloating and gassiness, constipation, and even improving immune function.
Probiotic bacteria are measured in colony-forming units (CFU), which references the number of cells contained in each dose of the supplement.
Could Revive Reds Cause Side Effects?
On the Revive Reds website, Dr. Kara notes that, “as a physician, I recommend discussing any supplement you plan on adding to your daily regimen with your family doctor,” which is something we commonly recommend as well. They’ll be able to advise whether or not the ingredients could be beneficial, as well as if they could lead to unwanted side effects or medication interactions.
With this in mind, Healthline reports that “Polyphenols may have several unwanted side effects,” which “are most common when taking polyphenol supplements instead of getting them naturally through food. The most common side effect with the strongest scientific evidence is the potential for polyphenols to interfere with or limit iron absorption.”
Furthermore, according to a 2005 study conducted by the French Institut national de la santé et de la recherche médicale (INSERM):
“Adverse effects of polyphenols have been evaluated primarily in experimental studies. It is known, for example, that certain polyphenols may have carcinogenic/genotoxic effects or may interfere with thyroid hormone biosynthesis. Isoflavones are of particular interest because of their estrogenic activity, for which beneficial as well as detrimental effects have been observed.
Finally, polyphenols may interact with certain pharmaceutical agents and enhance their biologic effects. It is important to consider the doses at which these effects occur, in relation to the concentrations that naturally occur in the human body.”
In addition, the Natural Medicines Database and WebMD indicate that riboflavin can cause the urine to turn a yellow-orange color, and the most common side effect associated with niacin is flushing.
They also report that taking selenium doses above 400 mcg (Revive Reds contains 700 mcg per dose) can “increase the risk of developing selenium toxicity. Taking lower doses long-term can increase the risk of developing diabetes.”
Healthline warns that you shouldn’t consume raw or unprocessed shilajit, as it “may contain heavy metal ions, free radicals, fungus, and other contaminations that can make you sick. Whether you purchase online or from a natural or health food store, make sure shilajit is purified and ready for use.”
They also warn you shouldn’t take it if you have sickle cell anemia, hemochromatosis, or thalassemia.
Lastly, green tea contains natural caffeine that could cause jitteriness or insomnia in sensitive individuals, and it’s reported that the long-term safety (beyond three months) of bitter melon is unknown.
How Much Does Revive Reds Cost?
Kara MD has priced Revive Reds as follows:
- 1 Jar (4.5 oz): $34.95, plus $4.95 S&H
- 3 Jars: $86 ($28.67 per jar)
- 6 Jars: $150 ($25 per jar)
The three and six-bottle options come with free shipping, while all quantities come with a 90-day no-questions-asked money back guarantee, less S&H charges. In order to request one, customer service can be reached at (877) 982-8828 or email@example.com.
Who Is Dr. Mahmud Kara, M.D.?
While the Kara MD website states that four out of five customers recommend Revive Reds, and that it’s “one of the fastest selling polyphenol blends on Google,” we didn’t encounter any online customer feedback for the supplement during our research.
We also didn’t locate any additional details about the parent company, Alternative Health Resources Inc., whether at the Better Business Bureau or other third-party sites.
However, we did learn that Dr. Mahmud Kara, MD was an attending physician at the Cleveland Clinic before moving on to focus on Integrative and Alternative Medicine that combines Eastern and Western traditions.
Today, he’s also the Founder and CEO of the Virtual MediClinic, Medical Director for Affinity Whole Health hormone replacement therapy, as well as Chief Medical Officer for the YMCA.
Are There Other Polyphenol Supplements Like Revive Reds?
When researching products, we’ve found the quickest method of getting a general idea of the competition is by searching online marketplaces like Google Shopping and Amazon. Doing this returned dozens of products competing for the same customers as Revive Reds, most of which were priced between $18 and $70+.
Ultimately, this puts Revive Reds somewhere near the middle of the pack from a cost perspective. But is it a good idea to focus on price when shopping for a dietary supplement?
As we detailed earlier, your first consideration should be whether or not a supplement contains ingredients that can address your diagnosis, which is something only a healthcare professional can determine. As such, it’s a great idea to start by making an appointment with your doctor.
If they believe a supplement like Revive Reds could be beneficial, the Healthline article earlier notes, "It's best to consume polyphenols through foods naturally containing them, instead of through artificially made supplements, which may come with more side effects. If you take supplements, make sure they are made from a reputable company with high-quality sourcing."
In our experience researching hundreds of dietary supplements, you should also focus on companies that:
- Provide at least 30-day refund policies, with no restocking or other penalty fees
- Have a mostly positive online customer reputation. When researching, do you encounter any common complaints or concerns?
- Don’t sell their supplements only through free trials
- Don’t automatically enroll customers in recurring shipping programs
- Provide clinical evidence to support their claims
Does all of this bode well for Kara MD and their Revive Reds supplement?
Our Final Thoughts About Revive Reds by Kara MD
Although Kara MD/ Alternative Health Resources Inc. seem to be fairly new, with no online presence outside of their product website, nor any customer feedback, they stand behind Revive Reds with a 90-day refund policy, which should be more than enough time to decide if it’s beneficial for you.
They also price their supplement competitively and don’t enroll customers in ‘free’ trials or autoship programs.
With these benefits in mind, we also learned from sites and organizations like the Natural Medicines Database, Healthline, and the NIH’s PubMed that there doesn’t seem to be a lot of clinical support for the company’s claims that Revive Reds’ ingredients can meaningfully boost energy, metabolism, or overall health for non-deficient individuals.
We also learned that the Revive Reds formula is very similar (including the same proprietary blends) as Vital Reds by Gundry MD, although it’s priced meaningfully higher at $49.95 per jar.
As such, if you’re looking to give this exact formula a try but want to pay as little as possible, it seems you might not be out much more than a few dollars in S&H (original and return) if you roll the dice on Revive Reds and end up dissatisfied.