Do Phiten Necklaces Work?

Phiten necklaces are making waves due to claims that they improve the body’s flow of energy, which in turn has the potential to improve athletic ability. A chiropractor invented the necklaces, which infuse aqua-titanium metal into the necklaces. According to Phiten, the necklaces then provide the wearer with “natural health-promoting-properties of titanium.”

History

The necklaces have steadily risen in popularity since first hitting the market, however, the company’s necklaces reached high demand in 2007, when it gained a license with the MLB Authentic Collection. Since that time, pitchers for various major league baseball teams have sported the Phiten necklaces, spurring interest among the general public. Other celebrity athletes also wear the necklaces, including professional golfer, Sergio Garcia and basketball player, Carmelo Anthony. Today, Phiten necklaces come in an array of colors and styles, and are marketed to individuals of all ages.

Skepticism

Despite the large number of athletes and loyal customers who swear by the product’s health and wellness benefits, there are many skeptics who are reluctant to believe the unofficial claims surrounding Phiten necklaces. Many people are skeptical of Phiten necklaces because of the science Phiten developers use to create and produce the necklaces. The necklaces follow the same area of science that acupunture does, which may reduce credibility among some consumers. Additionally, much of the speculation surrounding Phitan’s health benefits comes from vague claims from the company itself. In promoting the necklaces, Phiten fails to make an actual health claim or prove a single benefit, but instead encourages consumers to just buy a necklace to experience its benefits for themselves.

Because of federal regulations regarding false health claims, there’s noticably little specific information from Phiten’s U.S. branch about what the necklaces can actually do, but other counties have less stringent regulations regarding public health claims. Phiten websites and company branches in those countries make more specific claims regarding the potential of Phiten necklaces. For example, the New Zealand version of Phiten’s website states that the necklaces and their aqua-titan components may reduce fatique and alleviate muscle strain and tension, which may subsequently prevent injury, improve recovery and maximize physical ability and agility.

Science

To find out the truth about Phiten necklaces and the aqua-titanium technology they use to reduce fatigue and muscle strain, Martin Korte of the Zoological Institute in Germany conducted a research experiment in 2008 studying tape infused with the same aqua-titanium technology. The study examined the synaptic plasticity, resting membrane potential and firing rate of hippocampal pyramidal neurons in the presence of aqua-titanium  tape and a placebo tape.

The study found insignificant evidence supporting the health benefits of aqua-titanium infused products, such as tape or Phiten necklaces. Though researchers found a slight improvement in pain under the influence of high conentrations of aqua-infused titanium, the improvements were insignificant in comparison to the same benefits of the control group who wore placebo tapes. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean Phiten necklaces have no affect on athletic performance. The placebo effect of Phiten necklaces may actually improve an athlete’s ability based on phsycology alone. If a wearer believes he acquires energy from a necklace, that thought process may in turn have a positive impact on actual performance.

Eastern medicine is known for its approach to health from both a physical and mental capacity. Many people believe the body and the mind has the ability to self-heal. Though the science of Phiten necklaces lacks solid scientific evidence to support claims that the product provides health benefits to wearers, there’s also little evidence to prove the necklaces have no benefits either. With no known side effects and the slight possibility of health improvements, the jury is still out on whether or not Phiten necklaces really work.