Alpha Brain Review: Is It The Best Nootropic Supplement?

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• Fact Checked By: Spela Bednjanic, B.A. In Psychology

In this year alone, over 100 new nootropic supplements have come to the market. Unfortunately, many of them are just copycats of Alpha Brain, one of the first nootropic stacks on the market. But can Alpha Brain still compete with newer and more refined nootropic stacks? Is it worth your money? Check it out.

Alpha Brain Review

We all rely on our brain function in performing mental tasks, no matter if they are more complex or simple activities. Due to the modern lifestyle, poor diet, and cognitive decline, we are slowly losing mental power. 

To slow down mental decline, nootropics can help us out. And one of them, Alpha Brain, is specifically interesting since over a million bottles had been sold so far. 

But is this the best nootropic for mental clarity and cognitive performance?

Learn more about my experience, side effects, dosages, and benefits in this Onnit Alpha Brain review. 

Alpha Brain review

What Is Alpha BRAIN?

Alpha BRAIN is a dietary supplement that supports cognitive functions. It is a supplement that promotes:

  • Memory
  • Focus
  • Mental speed
  • Flow state

Alpha BRAIN helps with reasoning, problem-solving, remembering important things, and long-lasting focus. 

As a matter of fact, a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study showed that the use of Alpha Brain for 6 weeks significantly improved verbal memory and executive functions in healthy adults. [*]

Not many nootropic stacks are supported by clinical studies, so Alpha Brain definitely stands out.

Since its market debut in 2011, customers have bought over 1 million Alpha BRAIN bottles. Joe Rogan, the famous comedian and podcaster and the part-owner of Onnit, helped to promote Alpha Brain and other Onnit products. Because of Joe’s big impact, many people recommended renaming Onnit to Joe Rogan supplements. 

Now, I came across this dietary supplement in 2015. Since its complex formula fascinated me, I decided to study it in detail.

Here is what I found out. 

Alpha BRAIN Ingredients

Alpha BRAIN’s formula contains 12 nootropics. The formula is gluten-fee, nut-free, keto-friendly, dairy-free, and paleo. 

Here is the Onnit Alpha Brain ingredients list: 

  • L-Tyrosine
  • L-Theanine
  • Oat straw extract
  • Vitamin B6
  • Phosphatidylserine
  • Cat’s Claw extract
  • Alpha-GPC
  • Bacopa Monnieri
  • Huperzine A
  • L-Leucine
  • Vinpocetine
  • Pterostilbene

Alpha Brain Ingredients, aplha brain

Ingredients are part of three blends:

  • Onnit Flow Blend
  • Onnit Focus Blend
  • Onnit Fuel Blend

Let’s learn more about them.

Vitamin B6

Vitamin B6 produces necessary coenzyme in the body. [1] It also improves mood, reduces symptoms of depression, and promotes brain health. Vitamin B6 plays an important role in the production of neurotransmitters.

Cat’s Claw Extract

Cat’s Claw (Uncaria Tomentos) is an anti-inflammatory Amazonian vine. It helps with fatigue syndromes. [2] No other benefits have been discovered so far.

Onnit Flow Blend, 650 mg

Flow Blend contains four of the mentioned nootropics.

L-Tyrosine

L-tyrosine is an amino acid that improves cognition during acute stressors, enhances our working memory and well-being. [3] It is beneficial for people who suffer from stress. L-tyrosine is the precursor of dopamine, but it also increases adrenaline levels. 

L-Theanine

L-Theanine is an amino acid found in green tea. It is a relaxing agent that reduces stress and increases alertness. [4] It also promotes alpha brain waves, which are crucial for being in the flow. I often combine it with caffeine for simultaneous effects. [5]

Oat straw extract

Oat straw is a compound that promotes cognitive function. Anecdotal evidence shows Oat straw improving mood and boosting brain function. We lack studies that would confirm many of the anecdotal benefits. [6]

Phosphatidylserine

Phosphatidylserine is an ingredient that is vital for cognitive function. Supplementing it shows positive effects on memory and mental capability. [7] This amino acid can slow down cognitive decline, and it helps maintaining a healthy brain.

Phosphatidylserine is one of the most potent nootropics in this nootropic supplement.

Focus Blend, 240 mg

Focus blend contains three compounds.

Alpha GPC

Alpha GPC is a choline-containing compound that improves memory and decreases cognitive decline. [8] Athletes use this precursor to acetylcholine to enhance power output. [9]

Bacopa Monnieri

Bacopa Monnieri is an adaptogen herb that improves cognition and memory. [10] Using this adaptogen can decrease anxiety. [11] Studies confirmed that supplementing Brahmi improves memory in healthy individuals. 

Huperzine-A (Huperzia Serrata)

Huperzine-A is a compound that belongs to the cholinergic class of molecules. It slows down cognitive decline in the elderly. [12] By inhibiting an enzyme, it increases the production of acetylcholine in the brain.

Based on the available research, it is important to cycle Huperzine-A. That’s why I recommend supplementing it for 5 days and then staying 2 days off. 

Onnit Fuel Blend, 65 mg

L-Leucine

Leucine is the primary BCAA. It promotes muscle gain, but it possesses no nootropic benefits. [13] Its role in this supplement is unclear. 

Vinpocetine

Vinpocetine is an alkaloid from the periwinkle plant. Supplementing Vinpocetine increases the blood flow to the brain. [14] Studies also show that it can increase memory and decrease cognitive decline. 

Pterostilbene

Pterostilbene is a methylated stilbene molecule that boosts cognition, reduces cholesterol and glucose. [15] Pterostilbene improves neural connection to promote cellular integrity. 

Sadly, we still lack research on pterostilbene to confirm its efficacy and safety. 

We just covered Alpha Brain nutrition facts. Now let’s check out my experience with Alpha Brain nootropic. 

My Experience

The Alpha BRAIN founder once said: “Alpha BRAIN works the first time you try it.” Sadly, this is untrue for most nootropic stacks, so I was eager to test Alpha Brain and see if this is true. 

I ordered a 90-capsule bottle and I couldn’t wait for the test to start. 

Alpha Brain Ingredients

Week 1

I stopped taking other nootropics a week before I started supplementing Alpha BRAIN.

I took two Alpha Brain pills on the first test day after breakfast. For the first 20-25 minutes, I didn’t feel any effects. However, about 30 minutes later, I started feeling more focused. I got a mild energy push, which surprised me. 

The effect lasted for 2-3 hours. While I hoped I would feel more motivated, that didn’t happen. But overall, I was happy with the effects. 

I continued taking two capsules per day for the whole week. I once took them on an empty stomach, which caused some nausea. But when I took Alpha Brain capsules with or after breakfast, I experienced no issues. 

I experienced the same results every single day. I felt more focused, and I was more energized.

Week 2

I continued taking the capsules for another week. I even tried three Alpha BRAIN capsules one day, but the effects were similar to taking two capsules. 

During the 2-week test period, I experienced no side effects (besides when I took the supplement on an empty stomach). But that was not the case for my team members.

My coworker felt sick when she took three capsules of Alpha Brain. I don’t know exactly what happened, but she didn’t like the effects. 

Nonetheless, the Alpha BRAIN effects positively surprised me.

To sum it up, my experience with Alpha BRAIN was positive. Based on my experience, Alpha Brain definitely boosts cognition, focus and helps with processing speed.

But is it really safe? How about the side effects?

Alpha BRAIN Benefits

What benefits Alpha Brain pills bring? And how does it make you feel?

If you read my experience with this supplement, you already know what to expect from it. Alpha Brain is not a game-changer, but the focus-boosting effects are enjoyable.

When it comes to benefits, Alpha Brain delivers many. Most importantly, Alpha Brain helps you get in the flow state. This is the state of maximum concentration. Let’s check other benefits more in detail.

Enhances Focus

Various nootropics in this nootropic supplement can improve your focus and alertness. This will help you become more productive, and ultimately, more successful. 

Improves Executive Function

The randomized, placebo-controlled study confirmed that supplements Alpha Brain for at least 6 weeks significantly improved executive function in healthy adults. This means that Alpha Brain impacts the prefrontal cortex, a crucial part of the brain responsible for decision-making.

Improves Verbal Memory

The same study concluded that the use of Alpha Brain improves recent verbal memory. As a matter of fact, Alpha Brain contains Bacopa Monnieri, a very potent nootropic herb for boosting memory.

Prolongs The Flow State

Based on my research and experience, Alpha Brain not only makes it easier to get in the flow state, but it also prolongs it. I stayed focused for up to 3 hours during my Onnit Alpha Brain review period. 

Helps With Neuroregeneration

Alpha Brain contains ingredients that help with body repair. They activate DNA repair of nerve cells and help with boosting immune system. 

So, how should you take Alpha Brain to get the benefits?

Alpha BRAIN Dosage

The recommended daily dosage of Alpha Brain is one sachet or two capsules per day. Based on my research, two capsules are the optimal daily dosage, even though the upper limit is not written on the label. 

I experimented with three capsules, but the effects were similar to taking two capsules.

When to take Alpha BRAIN?

I recommend taking Alpha Brain in the morning with or after breakfast. 

Many wonder if it is possible to overdose on Alpha Brain. Yes, it is. Therefore you need to follow the recommended daily dosage. Even though this is a dietary supplement, it contains potent nootropics that may cause problems. 

Speaking of which, let’s look at the most common side effects. 

Alpha BRAIN Side Effects

Nootropics are, by definition, side-effects free. But is that the case for Alpha BRAIN?

I experienced no adverse side effects during my Alpha BRAIN test. But that was not the case for my team.

My team member experienced stomach pain and a headache during the test. I don’t know what caused the side effects, but based on my research, about 5-10% of people cannot tolerate Alpha Brain.

Since we don’t know the exact amount of all ingredients in this supplement, finding out which ingredient could cause the side effects is challening.

In general, Alpha BRAIN is a safe supplement. However, the most common side effects include:

  • Stomach pain – Most negative reviews of Alpha Brain mention stomach pain and nausea. Alpha Brain contains potent nootropics, which could cause stomach pain, especially if you take it on an empty stomach.

  • Headache – Users often report getting a headache after taking Alpha Brain. There are many reasons why this could happen. It is unlikely that Alpha Brain alone causes headaches.

  • Anxiety – if you take too many capsules of Alpha Brain, you can feel anxious, especially if you are not used to nootropics.

  • Insomnia – since Alpha Brain contains no caffeine, it is unlikely to experience problems with insomnia. If you do, I recommend you take the capsules earlier in the morning.

  • Vomiting – vomiting is probably the worst side effect that you can experience with Alpha Brain. Again, there is no proof that Alpha Brain on its own can cause it, but to avoid it, make sure you take the capsules with food. 

Can You Build Up A Tolerance To Alpha BRAIN?

There is no evidence that you can build up a tolerance. Even so, I recommend you weekly cycle the supplement. You can follow my 5-2 cycle formula. Take nootropics for 5 days in a row and take 2 days off. 

This is my honest recommendation to avoid the risks of side effects or tolerance.

Alpha Brain Vs…

Before I compare Alpha Brain to popular nootropic supplements, let’s compare Alpha Brain capsules to Alpha Brain Instant drink.

Alpha Brain Instant vs. Alpha Brain Capsules

Alpha Brain Instant is a nootropic drink that is available in different flavors. It contains the same ingredients and dosages as the original Alpha Brain. 

Which one is better? Well, it depends on your preference. If you like taking capsules, go with Alpha Brain. If you prefer a drink, then buy Alpha Brain Instant.

I tested both products, and I liked them both. Alpha Brain Instant has an advantage because it tastes better. Currently, the following flavors are available:

  • Meyer Lemon
  • Peach (my favorite)
  • Blackberry Lemonade
  • Coconut Lime
  • Pineapple Punch
  • Ruby Grapefruit

Now let’s compare Alpha Brain to other supplements. 

Alpha Brain vs. Mind Lab Pro

Many people compare Alpha Brain to Mind Lab Pro, my top-rated nootropic supplement. While both products are great, Mind Lab Pro stands out.

To read my full comparison, click here >>

Alpha Brain vs. Qualia Mind

Qualia Mind is a premium nootropic supplement, quite different than Alpha Brain. But can Alpha Brain compete with a supplement that contains 28 ingredients?

Here is my full comparison >>

Alpha Brain vs. Adderall

For some reason, people like comparing a dietary supplement (Alpha Brain) to a drug (Adderall). Adderall is an effective drug for treating ADD. People (especially students) often abuse Adderall due to its cognitive-enhancing effects. 

This is very dangerous to do, illegal, and most importantly, can cause severe sid effects.

If you are not prescribed Adderall, then avoid it by all means. It is not a nootropic but a very potent drug.

Alpha Brain vs. Modafinil

Modafinil is another drug used for treating sleep-related health issues. Since it is not a nootropic, it is hard comparing it to Alpha Brain. 

Yes, Modafinil can boost your energy levels, but it has no other cognitive-promoting effects.

Also, you need a prescription for Modafinil. Instead of taking this drug, I highly recommend Alpha Brain. 

Alpha Brain contains natural compounds, it is basically side-effects free and safe for supplementing.

Alpha BRAIN Reviews & Feedbacks

What do Alpha BRAIN users think of this supplement? I checked over 100 comments on different blogs, Amazon, and Onnit’s website.

I discovered many interesting reviews. Among others, I found over 450 reviews on the Alpha BRAIN official store. And the average score is over 4.2/5.

Surprising!

Here are I share two exciting comments that I agree with: 

 “I liked Alpha after the first few weeks but i figured it wasnt worth it. After a month and a half of using it i started to notice major differences in my focus, motivation, and overall cognitive function. TOTALLY WORTH IT!”

“Ive been on this for a few months now, feels like w-d40 in my brain, able to recall information i would think is forgotten from months ago. Less of that gimme a minute to remember, transitions between thoughts are smoother. Definitely happy with my purchase. Would recommend to anyone”

Where to Buy Alpha BRAIN? 

To buy Alpha BRAIN, click on the button for the lowest possible price: 

The price varies based on the number of pills you order, but the standard 60ct costs around $50. 

Use code YOURINCEPTION for a special 10% discount. 

Verdict

Does Alpha Brain Work? Yes, Alpha Brain improves cognitive performance. But there are better nootropic stacks available on the market.

There are three complaints we have about this nootropic stack:

  • Its formula lacks a few effective nootropics
  • My team experienced adverse side effects
  • It contains three proprietary blends

Apart from that, Alpha BRAIN is a supplement worth trying.

But if you want to check our top-rated nootropics, click on the button: 

FAQ

1. How long does Alpha Brain last? 

According to my research and experience, the effects of Alpha Brain last for up to four hours. 

2. Is Alpha Brain safe?

Yes, Alpha Brain is a safe dietary supplement that rarely comes with side effects. 

References

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2. Higashiyama, Akiko, et al. “Effects of L-Theanine on Attention and Reaction Time Response.” Journal of Functional Foods, vol. 3, no. 3, July 2011, pp. 171–178, 10.1016/j.jff.2011.03.009.

Banderet, Louis E., and Harris R. Lieberman. “Treatment with Tyrosine, a Neurotransmitter Precursor, Reduces Environmental Stress in Humans.” Brain Research Bulletin, vol. 22, no. 4, Apr. 1989, pp. 759–762, 10.1016/0361-9230(89)90096-8. Accessed 23 July 2019.

3. Frank, Kurtis, et al. “Theanine Research Analysis.” Examine.com, 20 Jan. 2020, examine.com/supplements/theanine/

4. Moccetti, T, et al. “Bioactivity-Based Development of a Wild Green Oat (Avena Sativa L.) Extract in Support of Mental Health Disorders.” Zeitschrift Für Phytotherapie, vol. 27, no. S 1, 23 Nov. 2006, 10.1055/s-2006-954926. Accessed 9 Dec. 2020.

5. Kato-Kataoka, Akito, et al. “Soybean-Derived Phosphatidylserine Improves Memory Function of the Elderly Japanese Subjects with Memory Complaints.” Journal of Clinical Biochemistry and Nutrition, vol. 47, no. 3, 2010, pp. 246–255, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2966935/, 10.3164/jcbn.10-62. Accessed 8 Jan. 2020.

6. Frank, Kurtis, et al. “Vitamin B₆ Research Analysis.” Examine.com, 27 Jan. 2020, examine.com/supplements/vitamin-b6/. Accessed 9 Dec. 2020.

7. Sheng, Y., et al. “Enhanced DNA Repair, Immune Function and Reduced Toxicity of C-MED-100, a Novel Aqueous Extract from Uncaria Tomentosa.” Journal of Ethnopharmacology, vol. 69, no. 2, 1 Feb. 2000, pp. 115–126, pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/10687868/, 10.1016/s0378-8741(99)00070-7. Accessed 9 Dec. 2020.

8. De Jesus Moreno Moreno, Maria. “Cognitive Improvement in Mild to Moderate Alzheimer’s Dementia after Treatment with the Acetylcholine Precursor Choline Alfoscerate: A Multicenter, Double-Blind, Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Trial.” Clinical Therapeutics, vol. 25, no. 1, 1 Jan. 2003, pp. 178–193, pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/12637119/, 10.1016/s0149-2918(03)90023-3.

9. Ziegenfuss, Tim, et al. “Acute Supplementation with Alpha-Glycerylphosphorylcholine Augments Growth Hormone Response to, and Peak Force Production during, Resistance Exercise.” Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, vol. 5, no. S1, Sept. 2008, 10.1186/1550-2783-5-s1-p15. Accessed 9 Dec. 2020.

10. Calabrese, Carlo, et al. “Effects of a Standardized Bacopa Monnieri Extract on Cognitive Performance, Anxiety, and Depression in the Elderly: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial.” The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, vol. 14, no. 6, July 2008, pp. 707–713, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3153866/, 10.1089/acm.2008.0018.

11. C., Stough, et al. “The Chronic Effects of an Extract of Bacopa Monniera (Brahmi) on Cognitive Function in Healthy Human Subjects.” Psychopharmacology, vol. 156, no. 4, 1 Aug. 2001, pp. 481–484, www.gwern.net/docs/nootropics/2001-stough-2.pdf, 10.1007/s002130100815. Accessed 7 May 2019.

12. Ha, Giang T., et al. “Huperzine A as Potential Treatment of Alzheimer’s Disease: An Assessment on Chemistry, Pharmacology, and Clinical Studies.” Chemistry & Biodiversity, vol. 8, no. 7, July 2011, pp. 1189–1204, 10.1002/cbdv.201000269. Accessed 19 Mar. 2020.

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15. Riche, Daniel M., et al. “Analysis of Safety from a Human Clinical Trial with Pterostilbene.” Journal of Toxicology, vol. 2013, 2013, p. 463595, pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23431291/, 10.1155/2013/463595. Accessed 9 Dec. 2020.

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