- Neuroplasticity – An In-Depth Guide to How it Works and How to Transform Your Brain
- Training to Develop Synaesthesia for Improved Memory and Maths Ability (Theoretically)
- How to Train Like Bruce Lee for Insane Power and Speed
- A Complete Guide to Transhumanism
- The Surface Pro 3 – Ideal Productivity for Web Entrepreneurs
- Can You Bench Press a Dinosaur??
- The Neuroscience of Genius And Increasing Intelligence
- How Caffeine Affects Neurotransmitters and Profoundly Changes Your Brain
- A Detailed Guide to Your Brain – So You Can Start Hacking It
- Almost Every Bodyweight Exercise Ever (150+ Moves)
Update! Limitless Brain Nootropic Review – Also: How to Review a Nootropic Product
Limitless Brain is one of the new breed of nootropic supplements currently popping up everywhere online. Smart drugs are rapidly gaining popularity as we hear that ‘one percenters’ and CEOs are all using things like modafinil to get ahead. So it was only a matter of time before companies and entrepreneurs started creating their own stacks and marketing them as ‘smart drugs’ for consumers.
The problem? They’re very varied in quality. And price. A lot of these products are nothing but scams, while others are potentially dangerous.
The guys at Limitless Brain were recently kind enough to send me a free sample of their product to try out and review. Fortunately, this one is not one of those dangerous ones or in fact a scam – I’m actually very impressed! Read on and I’ll explain why, as well as sharing some tips on how to pick out these kinds of noots.
Ingredients I Like
First the good news: this product uses ingredients that I like. This isn’t going to be one of those scathing reviews (like my review of iQuzil) because there’s nothing potentially harmful/untested like adrafinil in here. Largely, this product is made up of the classic caffeine/l-theanine combination (meaning you get the focus of caffeine but with less of a jittery edge) plus numerous precursors for/stimulators of acetylcholine. Acetylcholine is an important excitatory neurotransmitter that is implicated in alertness and memory. Then we get some stuff for dopamine (l-tyrosine) and for energy (taurine, sulbutiamine).
The full ingredients list is:
- Caffeine anhydrous
- Alpha GPC
- Huperzine A
To reiterate, I like this selection because it focuses on metabolic cognitive enhancers and on providing precursors and raw materials. There are no receptors being blocked or any other processes that might have negative impacts on different pathways or lead to tolerance and dependency. It’s a fairly natural and gentle supplement and all the better for it.
One thing I would change about this list is the caffeine. It’s so cheap and easy to come by that we really don’t need it included in our products. And this is especially true when it means I need to choose between being super wired or not having my morning coffee (which I really enjoy). I’d much rather a product like this would leave out the caffeine and let me choose whether to add it or not myself. But I can understand why companies do this and I guess it’s just something to bear in mind if you plan on working this into your regular routine.
No ‘proprietary blends’
This is where the update to this review comes in. Because originally, the list of ingredients was a ‘proprietary blend’. This essentially means the precise quantities of each ingredient aren’t listed. Companies claim that they do this in order to avoid copycats and to make their products seem more exclusive and unique. In reality though it’s very often used as a way to hide the minuscule amount of the more expensive ingredients. They tell you that they’ve included X and Y but they don’t tell you that you’re only getting one milligram!
I mentioned this in my original review and impressively, the guys at Limitless Brain responded by actually sending me the precise quantities and publishing those to their website. I am very impressed by this transparency, response to feedback and also the actual blend… it’s good!
It’s not a super cheap blend but with these quantities it represents good value.
One thing I think they could still work on is that right now the packaging says you can take ‘up to three tablets a day, depending on your weight and tolerance’. A bit more clarity and explanation there would definitely not go amiss for the less informed.
This is one thing I always recommend when looking at products like this: avoid proprietary blends where possible. If a company has nothing to hide, then there is no reason for it not to share how much of each ingredient is included. In this regard, Limitless Brain has really impressed me.
At the time of my initial test then, I didn’t know how much of each ingredient was in this supplement. I was going in pretty much blind and wasn’t precisely sure to what to expect.
And so I was very surprised to find I did like the way it felt. Quite a lot actually. The caffeine boost doesn’t feel too jittery (probably because it is well balanced with the l-theanine) but I otherwise have noticed myself being more productive, more alert and in a better mood. I’ve been handling stressful life events better than normal (just buying a house, no biggie!) and I would say my verbal fluency has improved. I’ve been beasting it on Super Hexagon which I often use as one of my measures of nootropics. Doing a bit of mindfulness meditation, I find my mind to be still in the good way when using this.
As ever, it is very hard to rule out placebo. But if I take the effects at face value, I’d say they’ve got the strength just right; there’s a noticeable lift and improvement in performance but without any detrimental headaches, jitteriness, anxiety etc.
I can’t say about long term effects but the ingredients chosen should also have supportive roles for long-term brain health.
Again, it’s always hard with these things to be absolutely sure. But I’ve had some very productive days writing while using this one with minimum procrastination and I’m going to be taking it daily until my sample runs out. That’s pretty much the best barometer as far as I’m concerned.
There is just one more factor I recommend when looking at these sorts of products – the presentation and the professionalism on display (or lack thereof). The web has done amazing things for business by making it very easy for anyone to create their own products, including nootropics and supplements. This is good news for startups but not so much if you’re a consumer because it means you could be buying anything from anybody. Looking at the presentation and the website then is one of the best ways to get an idea of the company behind the noot.
On this one, the packaging looks really good and this is a great start. It’s all shiny, blue and future-y (definitely a word). But my big gripe is with the name Limitless Brain. I mentioned this in my initial review and I did get a response – apparently the similarity with the film Limitless was more of a coincidence than anything else but the fact remains that people are going to make the connection. And it’s harder to take a product seriously when it sounds so similar to a well-known existing brand. It kind of feels like all those ‘Furious Bird’ apps – they don’t have their own identity.
This is also a bad call from a marketing perspective actually because it’s going to be incredibly hard to rank for the name ‘Limitless Brain’ seeing as there are so many posts and websites already using those terms to promote other things. There are tons of companies coming out with similar supplements using the name Limitless, there are books, there’s a website and yes there’s even a supplement called ‘NZT’. To get to the top of Google, these guys need their own brand they can promote. But TBH that’s not really my business or my job as a reviewer…
Looking at the website, you can see that a lot of care and attention has gone into it. I did notice a couple of typos (which they have now fixed) and normally I would consider that a warning sign. But actually, having spoken with a representative personally they seem genuinely keen to make something good. This is an enthusiastic young startup, not a cynical ‘internet marketing’ company.
But again, always make this check when looking at products like this one and try to get a feel for the company behind the name. Why not just get in touch and ask if you have any questions?
So overall, you can colour me impressed. Limitless Brain has a good selection of ingredients that seem to have the effect I want with no risk of downsides. I’d personally swap out the caffeine (and the name!) but I can honestly say I’m going to keep using this for now – which surprises me in light of bad experiences with other companies! If you’re looking for a pick-me-up and don’t mind spending a bit of cash, then this is one of the better options I’ve seen so far. If you go with another product though, always be sure to look into the ingredients, to try and find quantities and to do a thorough check of the website.
Of course you could always just buy the individual ingredients yourself and create your own stack. It’s cheaper but a lot of hassle…
I’ll be posting about anabolism and muscle building in the next few days but shortly after that I’m going to be doing a mega-post on transcranial direct current stimulation and reviewing the ‘Omni-Stimulator’ in the process. This is a whole other way to get a cognitive boost… so stay tuned or subscribe if you want to hear about that!