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Alpha Brain Review 2022: Alternatives, Safety & Effects

Lindsey Desoto

Updated on - Written by
Medically reviewed by Kimberly Langdon, MD

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Alpha Brain

7.0

Quality

7.0

Support Research

7.0

Reputation

7.0

Price

Features

  • Improved memory
  • Helps support cognitive functions
  • Helps your brain produce more alpha waves
  • Ability to perform complex tasks
  • Lasting mental clarity
  • Third-party testing for safety
  • Positive user reviews

Brand Information

  • Based out of Austin, TX
  • Founded in 2011
  • Offers various health products

Medical Benefits

  • May improve cognitive function
  • Clinically studied ingredients
  • Promotes alpha waves

About The Brand

If you’re searching for brain-boosting supplements, you will likely encounter Onnit, a supplier of high-quality nootropics. Onnit was founded in 2011 by a man named Aubrey Marcus.  

With a background in ancient philosophy and history as an athlete, Marcus’ goal was to create a company that allows customers to reach their fullest potential. 

Today, Onnit is a leader in the health and wellness industry and carries over 250 products. Their best sellers include clinically researched dietary supplements, earth-grown foods, apparel, and unconventional fitness equipment. Onnit’s flagship nootropic, Alpha Brain, has dominated the market since its release in 2011.

What is Onnit Alpha Brain?

Alpha brain is formulated with natural ingredients to support cognitive function by promoting alpha wave and neurotransmitter production, therefore boosting cognitive performance. Unlike many nootropics on the market, it has scientific research supporting its effectiveness. Additionally, it has been endorsed by famous athletes and celebrities, including Joe Rogan. To date, over one million bottles have been sold.

Let’s delve deeper into Onnit Alpha Brain, find out how it works, and if it’s something you should give a try.

Does It Really Work?

In theory, Alpha Brain works to help users “get in the zone” by supporting the production of alpha brain waves and neurotransmitters.

Our brain produces alpha waves when we’re in a relaxed or calm state. Many individuals experience these waves during stress-relieving activities like meditation[1]

In addition to significant anecdotal evidence, there is clinical research supporting its use. 

In one placebo-controlled study[2] conducted in 2016, Alpha Brain or a placebo was given to 63 individuals between the ages of 18 and 35 for six weeks.

The study found that, compared to the placebo, Alpha Brain supplementation resulted in significant improvements in verbal recall and cognitive function. Participants also showed higher alpha wave frequency thought to be related to an overall healthy brain environment.

It’s important to note, however, that the company funded this study, which can result in sponsorship bias.

In contrast, another study[3] from 2018 on 43 United States soldiers found no significant improvements in marksmanship performance between the soldiers given Alpha Brain and the placebo.

All in all, we need more studies to prove the effectiveness of the Alpha Brain.

See Nootropics Buying Guide Here

Is It Legit?

Yes, although limited, science does exist to support the cognitive enhancing benefits produced by Alpha Brain. Plus, Onnit is so confident that you’ll love Alpha Brain, they offer a free trial. Simply pay for shipping, and you’ll receive a free 15-day supply of Alpha Brain to try for yourself. They also offer a generous 90-day money-back guarantee. However, results will likely vary between users.

Pros

  • Supports memory
  • Promotes focus
  • Improves cognitive processing speed
  • BSCG Certified Drug-Free
  • Gluten-free
  • Third-party tested for safety
  • Caffeine-free
  • Paleo-friendly
  • Clinically proven to work
  • Money-back guarantee

Cons

  • May interact with other medications
  • Limited research available
  • Expensive

Feature Product & Coupon

Alpha Brain

Best Choice

Alpha Brain

  • Improved memory
  • Helps support cognitive functions
  • Helps your brain produce more alpha waves
  • Ability to perform complex tasks
  • Lasting mental clarity
  • Third-party testing for safety
  • Positive user reviews

Alpha Brain Ingredients

Alpha Brain is made up of three main proprietary blends to support the production of alpha waves and neurotransmitters in your brain. Though studies are limited, there is research to support its use as a nootropic. 

The product is made with natural ingredients, stimulant-free, gluten-free, and third-party tested for safety. If you’re looking for a high-quality nootropic, Alpha Brain may be a good choice.

Alpha Brain is made of ingredients that work together to support cognitive performance, improve focus, memory, and mental processing. 

Together, these ingredients may help build an environment where our brain can function at its best, thus promoting mental clarity and reducing brain fog.

Although Alpha Brain is clinically proven to benefit its users, research is still limited.  It is also made up of proprietary blends, resulting in a lack of ingredient transparency.

Most of the solid research supporting the use of many of Alpha Brain’s ingredients targets the elderly population. Since the quantities of ingredients are not displayed, we do not know if the ingredients are present in adequate amounts to provide benefits similar to those studied.

Alpha Brain is third-party tested by the Banned Substances Control Group (BSCG) to ensure the product is free of any banned or controlled ingredients. However, third-party testing results are not publicly available on their website at this time.

Let’s take a look at what’s inside of Alpha Brain.

Onnit Flow Blend (650 mg)

The Onnit Flow Blend is formulated to promote alpha brain wave production. 

Here’s a look at the ingredients that make up the Onnit Flow Blend:

L-tyrosine

A non-essential amino acid that’s commonly in brain-boosting supplements. It can help your body produce neurotransmitters that allow nerve cells throughout the body to communicate. According to a 2015 review[4], tyrosine improved cognitive performance during short-term periods of stress. However, its effectiveness can vary from person to person.

L-theanine

A non-essential amino acid that is often used as an anxiolytic (to reduce anxiety). Research[5] has shown that otherwise healthy people with high anxiety levels may benefit from 200mg of L-theanine.

Oat straw extract

An extract from an unripened Sativa plant is widely believed to improve cognitive abilities. According to one study[6], 1,600mg of oat herb extract improved attention and concentration. However, this study used a much larger quantity than what is in Alpha Brain, and the participants had pre-existing cognitive delays.

Phosphatidylserine 

Phosphatidylserine is a type of phospholipid that research suggests may increase cognitive function[7] before exercise.

Cat’s claw extract (350mg) 

Cat’s claw is found in the bark of a vine from the Amazon rainforest. According to Onnit, it promotes cellular integrity. However, at this time, there is no compelling evidence[8] that associates cat’s claw with any health benefits.

Onnit Focus Blend, 240mg

The Onnit Focus Blend is formulated to achieve optimal acetylcholine levels. Acetylcholine controls muscle cells and nerves. 

Here’s what you’ll find in the Onnit Focus Blend:

Alpha-GPC 

It supports the function of acetylcholine, a key neurotransmitter. It’s commonly used to improve cognitive functions, including supporting focus and mental performance. Although there is ongoing research[9] to support Alpha-GPC’s use in Alzheimer’s patients, more research is needed to prove its effectiveness in healthy individuals.

Bacopa Extract (100mg)

Bacopa is an herb used in traditional Ayurvedic medicine. It’s used to treat Alzheimer’s disease and improve brain functions. One six-week, randomized placebo-controlled trial[10] found that supplementation of 150mg of Bacopa monnieri extract in medical students led to significant improvements in cognition and memory.

Toothed clubmoss (Huperzia Serrata, 400mg)

It may prevent the breakdown of acetylcholine. It’s a Chinese herb commonly used to treat Alzheimer’s disease. Research[11] shows it may improve cognitive function in those with Alzheimer’s. 

Onnit Fuel Blend, 60mg

The Onnit Fuel Blend is formulated to promote optimal communication throughout your nervous system. It also may help maintain a healthy brain environment, further optimizing neural communication.

The ingredients in this blend are as follows:

L-leucine

A branched-chain amino acid (BCAA) that helps your body synthesize protein and repair muscle. Most research to date is related to its role in athletic performance.

Pterostilbene

It has antioxidant properties and, according to Onnit, may help protect brain and nerve cells. However, research is limited that supports these benefits. 

Vitamin B6, 10 mg

Vitamin B6 is essential for healthy brain development and is a cofactor in neurotransmitter synthesis.

Health Benefits of Alpha Brain

According to their website, Alpha Brain can help you feel “in the zone” on a day-to-day basis. They claim the product provides laser focus and razor-sharp clarity in a bottle. It can also help you:

  • Have quicker reaction times
  • Think clear under stress
  • Focus on difficult tasks
  • Remember names and places

Onnit reports it may take several weeks for users to experience the full benefits of Alpha Brain.

However, it’s important to note that more research should be completed to verify health claims associated with taking Alpha Brain.

Dosage & Side Effects

According to the Alpha Brain product label, users should take two capsules daily with a light meal. 

Onnit also suggests consulting with a physician before use if you are pregnant, nursing, have a history of any medical conditions, or are currently taking any medications.

In addition, you can also purchase Alpha Brain in pre-dosed instant packages. The nootropic drink mix is made by mixing one packet with 8 oz of cold water. Users should not exceed more than one packet within 24 hours.

However, it’s always essential to consult with a physician before starting any dietary supplement, regardless of your medical history. 

Although Alpha Brain is generally safe, users may experience a few minor side effects associated with general nootropic use, including:

  • Nausea
  • Headaches
  • Insomnia
  • Gastrointestinal distress

Alpha Brain Review: What Do Real Users Say?

As with most dietary supplements, there are mixed customer reviews. However, for the most part, there are positive experiences reported by Alpha Brain users.

“It seems to fire up your brain at a higher RPM level… I feel like it helps me form better sentences.”

Joe Rogan

“I got a bottle of Alpha Brain a month ago, and I’ve seen a legitimate immediate impact since I started. This is a great tool for those who seek to improve overall. I’ve been sharper and less distractible, well on the way to becoming the person I always wanted to be. If you’re seeking to improve or become more efficient, I highly recommend this.”

Bruce

“I tried it, and I was skeptical about it, but I thought if all these big celebrities and athletes are supporting it, why not give it a try? I don’t take it every day, but there are days where I just feel like being more on point, and it does just that it does everything it says it does, and more, at least in my case its help me with my short term memory loss like when you forget things after you walking in a room looking for it”

Dylan

“Worked great at first, then there was a sharp decline. I’m a contractor, and weather plays a huge part in working someday. The motivation was no better, nor was there an energy boost the way I was led to believe. Plus, if I didn’t stay active, I would normally fall asleep. It will, however, help clear the foggy mind first thing in the morning, but not a product I would buy again.”

Jon

“Some days, I can’t tell if it works or not. But on other days, it does promote a “flow state” as advertised. Thoughts are more fluid, and your process things quicker. Helps promote an overall good mood. I like taking this with shroom tech.”

Jake

Alternatives To Onnit Alpha Brain

Mind Lab Pro

Mind Lab Pro

See Mind Lab Pro Review

  • All-natural ingredients
  • Third-party tested
  • Improves brain performance
  • Expensive
Modafinil

Modafinil

See Modafinil Review

  • Enhances memory
  • Boosts mood
  • Promotes focus
  • Requires a prescription
Gorilla Mind

Gorilla Mind

See Gorilla Mind Review

  • Zero crash
  • Enhances memory
  • Clinically tested nootropic ingredients
  • Potential health risks
  • FDA disapproved ingredients

Where To Buy Alpha Brain?

Alpha Brain can be purchased through their website. You can also purchase Alpha Brain online through Amazon and a variety of supplement stores.

To qualify for a free trial or their money-back guarantee, consider purchasing directly through their website.

Final Thought

If you’re looking for a high-quality, stimulant-free, nootropic, Alpha Brain may be worth trying. This is especially true if you have a sensitivity to caffeine or are trying to avoid a jittery effect.

While most of the ingredients in Alpha Brain have research to back them up, we need more evidence to verify the cognitive benefits of taking Alpha Brain. As of right now, most of the ingredients have been studied in elderly patients with cognitive impairment. 

All in all, every user will likely have a slightly different experience when using dietary supplements, including Alpha Brain. The product appears to be safe for the general population and, if you’re set on purchasing a nootropic supplement, consider giving Alpha Brain a try. It’s been around for ten years now and has research to back up its use.

However, always consult with your medical provider before starting any dietary supplement.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Alpha Brain work?

Alpha Brain is formulated with mostly clinically tested nootropic ingredients to support mental performance and brain function. In addition, there has been one placebo-controlled clinical trial to prove the effectiveness of Alpha Brain. However, results may vary from person to person, and more research is needed to prove its effectiveness.

Is Alpha Brain a stimulant?

No, Alpha Brain is not a stimulant-based nootropic. Unlike many supplements, it does not contain caffeine, and you should not feel a crash after taking it.

Is Alpha Brain FDA Approved?

No, similar to most dietary supplements on the market, Alpha Brain is not FDA approved.

Who should not take Alpha Brain?

Everyone should speak with a medical doctor before taking supplements like Alpha Brain. However, it is vital for those with pre-existing medical conditions and those who are pregnant or nursing to speak with a medical doctor before taking Alpha Brain.


+ 11 sources

Health Canal avoids using tertiary references. We have strict sourcing guidelines and rely on peer-reviewed studies, academic researches from medical associations and institutions. To ensure the accuracy of articles in Health Canal, you can read more about the editorial process here

  1. The Nexus. (2019). How to Manipulate Brain Waves for a Better Mental State. [online] Available at: https://nexus.jefferson.edu/science-and-technology/how-to-manipulate-brain-waves-for-a-better-mental-state/.
  2. ‌Solomon, T.M., Leech, J., Murphy, C., DeBros, G., Budson, A. and Solomon, P. (2015). A randomized, double-blind, placebo controlled, parallel group, efficacy study of alpha BRAIN® administered orally. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, [online] 12(S1). Available at: https://jissn.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1550-2783-12-S1-P54.
  3. ‌Barringer, N., Crombie, A. and Kotwal, R. (2018). Impact of a purported nootropic supplementation on measures of mood, stress, and marksmanship performance in U.S. active duty soldiers. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, [online] 15(1). Available at: https://jissn.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12970-018-0229-8.
  4. ‌Jongkees, B.J., Hommel, B., Kühn, S. and Colzato, L.S. (2015). Effect of tyrosine supplementation on clinical and healthy populations under stress or cognitive demands—A review. Journal of Psychiatric Research, [online] 70, pp.50–57. Available at: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26424423/.
  5. ‌Higashiyama, A., Htay, H.H., Ozeki, M., Juneja, L.R. and Kapoor, M.P. (2011). Effects of l-theanine on attention and reaction time response. Journal of Functional Foods, [online] 3(3), pp.171–178. Available at: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1756464611000351.
  6. ‌Berry, N.M., Robinson, M.J., Bryan, J., Buckley, J.D., Murphy, K.J. and Howe, P.R.C. (2011). Acute Effects of an Avena sativa Herb Extract on Responses to the Stroop Color–Word Test. The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, [online] 17(7), pp.635–637. Available at: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21711204/.
  7. ‌Parker, A.G., Gordon, J., Thornton, A., Byars, A., Lubker, J., Bartlett, M., Byrd, M., Oliver, J., Simbo, S., Rasmussen, C., Greenwood, M. and Kreider, R.B. (2011). The effects of IQPLUS Focus on cognitive function, mood and endocrine response before and following acute exercise. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, [online] 8(1). Available at: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22017963/.
  8. ‌NCCIH. (2019). Cat’s Claw. [online] Available at: https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/cats-claw.
  9. ‌DeFina, P.A., Moser, R.S., Glenn, M., Lichtenstein, J.D. and Fellus, J. (2013). Alzheimer’s Disease Clinical and Research Update for Health Care Practitioners. Journal of Aging Research, [online] 2013, pp.1–9. Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3776389/.
  10. ‌Kumar, N., Abichandani, L.G., Thawani, V., Gharpure, K.J., Naidu, M.U.R. and Venkat Ramana, G. (2016). Efficacy of Standardized Extract ofBacopa monnieri(Bacognize®) on Cognitive Functions of Medical Students: A Six-Week, Randomized Placebo-Controlled Trial. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, [online] 2016, pp.1–8. Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5075615/.
  11. ‌Yang, G., Wang, Y., Tian, J. and Liu, J.-P. (2013). Huperzine A for Alzheimer’s Disease: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Clinical Trials. PLoS ONE, [online] 8(9), p.e74916. Available at: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24086396/.
Lindsey Desoto

Medically reviewed by:

Kimberly Langdon

Lindsey DeSoto is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist based out of Coastal Mississippi. She earned her BSc in Nutrition Sciences from the University of Alabama. Lindsey has a passion for helping others live their healthiest life by translating the latest evidence-based research into easy-to-digest, approachable content.

Medically reviewed by:

Kimberly Langdon

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