Mindlab Pro Review: A High Class Nootropic At A Great Price?

Want better brain performance?

Maybe you've bought some nootropics from the internet once, such as aniracetam or piracetam, tried them for a while, got okay results, and then forgot about it...

(Nootropics are substances that improve brain performance and health)

Or perhaps you've tried Qualia Mind but thought the product was too expensive at $140 (without discounts).

I get that...

Fortunately, less expensive nootropics stacks have entered the market. These cheaper cognitive enhancing stacks still utilise powerful ingredients, but they're much more affordable - great if you're on a tight budget but still wanting to reap the benefits of a quality nootropic. 

Mindlab Pro is one such nootropic stack. Mindlab Pro contains 11 different ingredients and may be the next big thing for brain performance. Learn more? Keep reading my Mindlab Pro review.

MindLab Pro Review Summary:

Pros:

  • A well priced, middle of the market nootropic at $65 a bottle (though buying 4 bottles at a time brings the price under $50 a bottle)
  • Caffeine free - which is great for those who already have plenty of caffeine in their daily intake and or are sensitive to caffeine.
  • Had a noticeable positive impact on my mood after 30 days of use.

Cons:

  •  Dosage amounts of some ingredients are on the lower side

Mindlab Pro Nootropic Review: Budget Game Changer For Better Mood, Energy, Brain Performance, And Resilience?

To adequately explore whether Mindlab Pro is a great supplement I've divided this blog post into several sections:

  1. Introducing "Nootropic Stacks", and how they revolutionize cognitive performance but also have problems of their own.
  2. The Mindlab Pro Nootropic Stack and a review of all individual ingredients found therein.
  3. My personal experience taking Mindlab Pro - benefits and downsides
  4. Comparing Mindlab Pro to other stacks such as Qualia Mind and Qualia Focus
  5. Common questions about the product
  6. Finishing thoughts: Bring on the nootropic revolution!

Each of these sections can be read on their own. 

1. Introduction: The Nootropic Stack Revolution -- And Associated Problems

The times are very interesting...

A couple of years ago - 2012 to be exact - I stumbled upon websites that sold compounds called "nootropics".

Back then, you had to order single ingredients from websites that were very poorly designed and got white powders delivered to your doorstep...

Times have changed...

Today, nootropics are sold in beautiful packaging and different ingredients are combined in highly-effective stacks by scientists. No longer do you have to research the inner workings of "piracetam", "aniracetam", "huperzine-A", and other compounds and combine them yourself for the best results.

Instead, teams of scientists have combined these ingredients into a stack that works well for most people.

Mindlab Pro is one example of such a nootropic stack:

Of course, the development has both benefits and downsides.

Nowadays it's very easy to pick a bottle of capsules and get instant results. In fact, I precisely think that this greater accessibility is going to totally transform the markets around cognitive performance in the coming years.

In a decade, perhaps, such nootropic stacks are probably sold almost anywhere at a reasonable price - just like you can buy coffee at most street corners.

Why wouldn't these products be?

It's very simple: nootropic stacks such as Qualia Mind and Mindlab Pro have a powerful effect in the same way that a cup coffee has a powerful effect. 

And believe me, no-one will reject a magic pill when it's handed to them...

The downside?

With ready-made nootropic stacks of 10-30 ingredients hitting the market, most people don't know what ingredients have which specific function anymore. In fact, it's impossible to tell which ingredient has which effect on you due to the sheer number of ingredients as well as their interaction.

Is it really the B-vitamins or the mushrooms giving you the clear-headed energy-boost -- or boost?

Hard to tell without testing individual ingredients. So that's why I've dissected all of the 11 ingredients in Mindlab Pro in the next section. If you're not interested in the background science, however, and want to learn more about my personal experience with MindLad Pro, then click HERE to skip ahead.

 

2. Mind Lab Pro Ingredient Review

In this section, I'll review all of the ingredients included in Mindlab Pro. That way you can understand what each ingredient is doing:

 

A. Citicoline, Cognizin® Version (250 milligrams (mg))

Citicoline is a premium version of a nutrient called "choline". The foods containing the highest amount of highly-absorbable choline are liver, eggs, and soy lecithin. Citicoline goes by different names, such as "CDP-choline" or "cytidine-5-di-phosphocholine". 

Choline is a precursor for a brain signaling compound - or "neurotransmitter" - called "acetylcholine" (3; 4; 5). Acetylcholine is made up of both acetate and choline, and hence, it's easy to imagine how choline contributes to this neurotransmitter.

Put in plain English, you need choline for your nervous system to function optimally. The nootropic effect of citicoline is precisely that it optimizes the functioning of the acetylcholine system in your brain.

The naturally emerging question, of course, is what the function of acetylcholine is...

Well, while oversimplifying, I'll distinguish the functions of acetylcholine three-fold:

  1. Tasks involving "executive function", which include abilities such as impulse control, working memory, focus, cognitive flexibility, and planning ability (5; 6; 7). Working memory is your ability to keep different pieces of information in your mind at the same time. Cognitive flexibility is your ability to switch tasks and to think outside the box. Planning ability signifies your ability for long-term strategizing.
  2. Memory function, specifically the ability to store new memory and access these memories over time (8; 9; 10; 11). 
  3. "Long-term potentiation" - or your ability to strengthen the connection between different brain cells (12; 13; 14). Enhanced long-term potentiation increases your ability to learn.

Keep in mind that study quality upon which these conclusions are based is low though  -- more human research is needed to make these conclusions definitive.

So are there any specific effects known from citicoline usage? Sure. Let's look at a few different studies:

  • Overall thinking speed, attention, as well as motor function, improved in adolescent males after taking citicoline (16).
  • Reaction times and overall learning ability improved in another study, as well as overall attention (17).
  • Some domains of memory are improved in elderly people when taking citicoline (18).
  • Citicoline protects brain cells, also if brain conditions such as Alzheimer's disease are present (19). If you've been so unfortunate to have had a stroke or have Parkinson's disease, citicoline probably protects brain cells as well. In both conditions, brain cell damage plays a major role in the illness. Some studies do counter the thesis of citicoline being neuroprotective though (21; 23).
  • Overall, the neuroprotective effects of citicoline seem reasonably robust (25; 26). Neuroprotective effects may reduce disease risk and slow down aging.
  • Specifically, citicoline may help in reversing cognitive impairment (20). That conclusion is mostly based on animal studies though (22).
  • In young people, citicoline may improve "processing speed, working memory, verbal learning, verbal memory, and executive function in low baseline performers" (24). If you already perform reasonably well, however, the added choline may not confer as much if any benefit. With high performance, citicoline may even impair results. Crazy but true...
  • While preliminary, citicoline may increase energy production in several brain areas such as the prefrontal cortex (28; 29).
  • Citicoline may lower your risk of mental disease such as depression and also decrease the risk of addictive disorders (30; 31; 32; 33). Not all outcomes for additions are beneficial though - in case of alcoholism there's no positive effect found, for instance.

The bottom line?

Citicoline has a wide array of potential benefits that very much depend on circumstance, but overall, the compound may very well have benefits if researched in more detail in higher-quality human studies.

The dosage of citicoline seems good, although a slighly higher dosage may work better. Some studies use several grams of citicoline with good effects -- although you could also simply take double the dosage of Mindlab Pro to increase efficacy.

  

B. Phosphatidylserine, Sharp-PS® Green Version (100 mg).

Phosphatidylserine is one of my favorite ingredients - and not really well known within the general health community or other niches such as the biohacking community.

The main advantage of phosphatidylserine is lowering your overall stress levels (12). Overall hormonal health such as your testosterone levels is also optimized by taking phosphatidylserine.

Let's look at a few studies once again:

  • Just like citicoline, phosphatidylserine aids neurotransmitter function in the human brain (34; 35). In fact, phosphatidylserine is made out of choline precursors in the human brain. Neurotransmitters such as dopamine, noradrenaline, and acetylcholine are affected by phosphatidylserine.
  • Phosphatidylserine is a precursor for acetylcholine synthesis (43). Remember that you need acetylcholine for brain functions such as impulse control, working memory, and "long-term potentiation" - the ability to create new brain cell connections.
  • Phosphatidylserine helps build nerve cells and improves antioxidant status (36; 37; 38). Due to energy production and aging, substances called "free radicals" are produced which damage cells and their constituents. Antioxidants protect cells against that free radical damage. In plain English, phosphatidylserine may protect your brain against damage and against the aging process.
  • As a result, phosphatidylserine almost certainly reduces the risk of neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease (48; 49; 50). Once again, study quality is low so that this conclusion is not definitive.
  • Many studies show that phosphatidylserine at least has some effect on cognitive performance (39; 40; 41; 42; 44). For instance, the decline of cognitive performance with aging and retention of cognitive ability in older age are actively promoted. Cognitive impairment is also countered in animal studies. Phosphatidylserine may also help your brain perform better under stress.
  • Overall well-being is improved with phosphatidylserine -- reductions in the propensity for depression are also found (45; 46; 47). Once again, the compound improves how well you perform under stress. 
  • Phosphatidylserine consistently lowers stress levels - exemplified in lowering the amounts of stress hormones such as "cortisol" (51; 52; 53). That decrease in the stress response can increase your recovery after intense exercise, for example, which prevents overtraining. These lower stress levels will also almost certainly improve cognitive performance in turn.
  • The compound may improve energy-production in your brain (54; 55; 56). As every brain process is dependent on energy production -- there's no free lunch -- that increase is always beneficial.

Keep in mind that my display of studies is in no way completely exhaustive - it only provides a preliminary overview of possible results that need to be tested in more high-quality human studies.

The problem?

The 100-milligram dosage used in Mindlab Pro is low. Many studies use a 300 - 800-milligram dosage for optimal results.

If you've included ample amounts of animal proteins into your diet you're probably also already ingesting sufficient phosphatidylserine in your diet. 100 grams of red meat contains 100 milligrams of phosphatidylserine, for instance. Fatty fish contains levels of up to 400 milligrams per 100 grams of product, moreover.

Hence, I'd like to have seen higher phosphatidylserine dosages being used in Mindlab Pro - although the compound is more expensive.

I thus understand why the company producing Mindlab Pro would lower the amount of phosphatidylserine in this nootropic stack.

 

 

C. Bacopa Monnieri, 24% bacosides (150 mg)

Another compound that has a very difficult name for most people - including myself!

The effects of Bacopa Monnieri?

Simple: the compound stimulates brain function while making you more relaxed at the same time. Let's dig deeper into the effects of Bacopa Monnieri:

  • Once again, just like phosphatidylserine and citicoline this compound also affects neurotransmitter levels in the brain. The specific neurotransmitters affected by Bacopa Monnieri are slightly different than their predecessors though. For instance, the levels of GABA (involved with relaxation), as well as dopamine and serotonin, are affected (57; 59; 60; 61; 62). The effects are highly complex thought, as GABA is increased in some brain areas while decreasing in other ones. Through its effect on serotonin, moreover, memory may be affected as well - which leads to the next benefit:
  • Bacopa Monnieri has very well established effects on human memory (63; 64; 65; 66; 67). Overall cognitive function also improves, and what's even more spectacular is that cognitive function improves in healthy young people. Finding improvements in a healthy population is usually a much tougher thing to do. In elderly people, Bacopa Monnieri also improves working memory - the ability to hold several pieces of information in the mind simultaneously. The effects on memory in general, moreover, also entails that you less easily forget the things you learn - hence, Bacopa Monnieri may improve your overall learning ability.
  • The substance may reduce overall anxiety and resting heart rate (68). Both are great for cognitive performance as people generally perform less well if they're anxious or stressed.
  • Impulsivity may decrease with Bacopa Monnieri, while your overall ability to focus improves (69; 70; 71). Even if you've got a condition that lowers your ability to focus, such as ADHD, Bacopa seems to have benefits. A great win!
  • Once again, Bacopa Monnieri is another compound that has antioxidant benefits (72; 73; 74; 75). Brain cells are thus protected and the overall aging process may be inhibited by this compound.
  • The substance may lower your overall stress levels (76; 77). This effect is mainly established in an older population though...

Conclusion?

Bacopa Monnieri almost certainly has beneficial effects in many areas of brain health and performance, such as anti-aging properties, improved memory, and lower stress and anxiety levels.

One downside is that many studies use dosages of 300 - 450 milligrams once again, making the dose you ingest with 2 capsules (150 mg) low in comparison. Hence, once again, I'd like to have seen a higher dose.

 

 

D. Lion’s Mane Mushroom (500 mg)

Lion's Mane - a legendary mushroom that has taken the spotlight in the natural health community in the last few years.

Let's go through the research:

  • The primary reason for including Lion's Mane (Hericium Erinaceus) is because it may confer very positive effects on nerve regeneration (78; 79; 80). The effect has only been established in animal studies though. Nonetheless, the effect is very promising and it's also probable that the same effect will be found in humans if studied. Overall, because of Lion's Mane's effects on the nervous system, the nerve regeneration effect may influence many areas of cognitive performance, such as memory, overall learning ability, and mood.
  • Lion Mane enhances your overall mood - at least when you're originally depressed (81; 82; 83). Overall irritation and anxiety go down when taking this compound, for instance. Sleep disorders and depression risk are also lowered.
  • Several studies demonstrate that Lion's Mane can lower several types of inflammation (84; 85; 86; 87). Chronic low-levels of inflammation are a key contributor or symptom of many modern conditions such as heart disease, respiratory problems, and diabetes. Excess inflammation lowers your brain capacity too.
  • In several studies, cognitive performance is improved (88; 89; 90; 91). Most of these studies include participants that have cognitive performance problems at baseline -- some are animal studies. The future should thus make clear whether cognitive performance benefits can also be found in healthy people.

 

Want a more clear-cut speculation of what this mushroom is potentially capable of? Check the video below: 

 

 

 

Interesting to say the least!

Great that Lion's Mane was included in this stack - although more research is needed to understand how the compound works in healthy younger people - the main customer that's using Mindlab Pro right now.

 

E. Maritime Pine Bark Extract (75mg)

You may have heard about "proanthocyanidins" (92). Proanthocyanidins are polyphenols found in plants such as cacao, different types of fruits such as apples, berries, and grapes, and tea, and beans.

Polyphenols, in turn, are plant compounds that temporarily stress the human body but subsequently allow organ function to become higher than baseline.

Proanthocyanidins also function as antioxidants, protecting your body against the damaging free radicals that are created as a byproduct of energy production and stress (93). 

One main mechanism of action by which (maritime) pine bark extract is promising for improving cognitive performance is by boosting blood flow and lowering blood pressure.

Simply put, greater blood flow (to the brain) is very likely to translate into higher cognitive performance.

In one study, a proanthocyanidin extract led to less plaque buildup in blood vessels and healthier overall blood vessels (94). In an animal study, the antioxidants caused an improvement in blood flow (95).

Those are great benefits for making your brain work better - inhibited blood flow decreases your mental performance.

Result?

A review (that aggregates many previous studies) showed that pine bark extract does create increases in cognitive performance in many instances (96).

One mechanism by which blood flow increases is creating more "nitric oxide" in your blood vessels (97; 98; 99; 100). Nitric oxide helps your blood vessels expand - red light therapy, altering your breathing pattern, exercise, and sunlight exposure are other means to accomplish that goal.

Moving on to the next compound:

 

F. N-Acetyl-L-Tyrosine (175 mg)

N-Acetyl-L-Tyrosine, or "NALT" in short, is an "amino acid". Amino acids are building blocks of proteins and your body needs them in the right balance to survive.

If you eat protein, the amino acids making up that protein can then be used for various vital functions.

NALT has entered the spotlights in the last decade because of its potential to improve cognitive performance.

Remember those neurotransmitters I talked about before?

Well, those neurotransmitters don't emerge out of anywhere - your body actively needs to create them. What makes NALT interesting is that it supplies your body with the much-needed building blocks for the dopamine, adrenaline, and noradrenaline neurotransmitters (101; 102; 103).

If you're relaxed and non-stressed, then it's far more likely that the NALT will help dopamine creation. Dopamine, in turn, helps your ability for abstract thinking, impulse control, creativity, and long-term planning.

All great benefits, right?

As a result, NALT has proven or almost certain benefits in many areas of cognitive performance, such as memory, reaction times and your ability to focus (104; 105; 106; 107).

What's currently unclear is whether NALT does have significant benefits if you're already consuming lots of protein in your diet. A counterargument against that statement is that the compound is absorbed better than it's regular tyrosine counterpart.

For now, the inclusion of this ingredient is excellent. Dosage, as frequently, may have been a bit higher for better results.

 

 

G. Suntheanine® L-Theanine (100 mg)

Theanine - one of my favorite compounds. 

The biggest potential benefit of theanine is that it promotes the GABA system in the human brain, which is also involved with relaxation (108; 109).

The end result is lowering stress and anxiety (110; 111; 112). 

Theanine has the added benefit of increasing your attention and reaction times - although study quality is not the highest (113; 114). 

Additionally, remember that Mindlab Pro has not included any caffeine into this nootropic stack. I praise Opti-Nutra - the company producing Mindlab Pro - for that choice because many people are already ingesting far too much caffeine. Not including caffeine leaves the choice up to you to add the compound...

My point?

Even if you do drink coffee, the cognitive benefits will be different and arguably better when combined with theanine (115; 116; 117; 118).

That's right! Theanine makes your cup of coffee far less jittery, for instance, which is a huge benefit for many people.

Moving on to the next compound:

 

H. Rhodiola Rosea, of which 3% rosavins, 1% salidrosides (50 mg)

Including Rhodiola Rosea into Mindlab Pro is very much justified...

Why?

Yet another compound that has a wide array of benefits for overall cognitive performance and well-being. Let's take a look:

  • Rhodiola Rosea almost certainly has stress-lowering benefits (119; 120; 121). Specifically, stress hormones such as "cortisol" may be affected and released in lowered amounts by your body. Keep in mind that many people are chronically living with chronic stress - and chronic anxiety. Hence, any compound that lowers stress is beneficial. Additionally, chronic stress also lowers your overall thinking capacity, and hence, Rhodiola can be a game-changer (122; 123; 124).
  • As a result of lowering stress, cognitive performance may increase by taking Rhodiola Rosea (125; 126). Memory may improve, for instance, while your overall learning ability also goes up. Overall mental fatigue is also counteracted (127).
  • In fact, both physical and mental fatigue can be counteracted by Rhodiola Rosea (128; 129; 130). Can lowering fatigue be beneficial for your cognitive performance? Absolutely!
  • Moreover, Rhodiola Rosea might have some anti-aging benefits and optimize brain health (also in old age) (131; 132; 133). Keep in mind that your cognitive performance declines big time after your 60s, especially if you don´t do much about it.
  • Lastly, although the quality of evidence is low, Rhodiola Rosea may improve your mood and counteract depression (134; 135; 136). I probably don't have to convince you that boosting your overall mood helps you perform better cognitively...

Overall conclusion?

I'm a big fan of this compound because it promotes a relaxed focused that is very unlike the jittery feeling of drinking a couple of cups of coffee.

Once again, research quality for this compound is not the highest - as is the case with many natural compounds.

And yet, including Rhodiola is great. Many potential benefits of this compound have not been listed, such as improving immune system functioning and augmenting overall hormonal health (leading to a better sex life)

The problem?

Only 50 milligrams of Rhodiola Rosea extract are used within a single dose. 

As many studies use doses up to 400 milligrams per day so the 50 mg dosage is very low.

I would suggest a 100 or even 150-milligram dose for every 2 capsules (although, the number of capsules taken in might then need to increase as well). With a 150 mg regular dose, you'd still only taken in 300 mg when taking a double daily dose, or 450 mg when taking 3 times the regular dose (which is probably not recommended by any stretch of the imagination).

Moving on to three different vitamins, starting with vitamin B6:

 

I. Vitamin B6, From BioGenesis™ (2.5 mg)

Vitamin B6 - while not as "sexy" as many other compounds in this nootropic stack, influences your cognitive performance in several ways. Vitamin B6:

  • Is essential for managing your mood, such as anxiety and depression (137; 138; 139). Vitamin B6 specifically helps build neurotransmitters such as dopamine, serotonin, and others. If neurotransmitter levels are off in your brain or other areas of your body, your thinking will also be off.
  • Boosts cognitive performance, especially in old age - although evidence is sparse (140; 141; 142; 143).
  • Lowers homocysteine (144; 145; 146). Homocysteine is a by-product of "methylation" - or the metabolism of single carbon atoms. While that may sound complicated, homocysteine needs to be converted into methionine - an amino acid your body can use. 

If you're eating reasonable levels of high-quality animal foods, vitamin B6 deficiency is also very unlikely. The reason is that while plants may contain sufficient levels of vitamin B6, converting that plant-version of B6 into a usable form takes more intermediary biochemical steps. There's thus more room for error while relying on the plant version of B6.

Nonetheless, it's unlikely if you're eating a reasonable quality diet that you're deficient in B6, so the reasons for including this ingredient are not immediately clear.

Depending on your age, this supplement contains 2-3 times the daily requirement of B6, so you'll almost certainly never be deficient when taking Mindlab Pro. Great dosage in this instance!

 

J. Vitamin B9, From BioGenesis™ (100 mcg)

First observation: compared to the aforementioned vitamin B6, "folate" or vitamin B9 is dosed at just 25% of the daily requirement.

(You need 400 micrograms, on average, of vitamin B9 every day.)

The upside?

The quality of the B-vitamins - including B9 - in Mindlab Pro seems very high - although the company does not list any studies on their website regarding the absorption of their Biogenesis™ products.

Vitamin B9 is necessary for proper function of your red blood cells (which carry oxygen throughout the body), development of the nervous system, mood, keeping your energy levels high, and lowering homocysteine levels (which I talked about with vitamin B6 (147; 148; 149).

Hence, this vitamin is nothing special but if you're deficient your brain won't perform optimally...

 

 

K. Vitamin B12, From BioGenesis™ (7.5 mcg)

Once again, another B-vitamin that's very closely related to cognitive performance:

  • Without sufficient vitamin B12, you'll become anemic (where blood cells cannot carry oxygen properly) and your energy levels will drop dramatically (150; 151; 152). Older people are frequently B12 deficient for the simple reason that their stomach acid levels have gone down, lowering absorption of B12 from food.
  • Your nervous system - which naturally affects your ability for (higher-level) thinking, also depends on vitamin B12 (152; 153; 154; 155; 156). As a result, a wide array of (health) problems such as depression, anxiety, poor thinking skills, psychiatric diseases, and other phenomena are caused or intertwined with B12 deficiency.
  • Once again, the homocystiene I've talked about before is also inversely associated with your B12 status. in fact, most B-vitamins, especially B2 (riboflavin), affect homocysteine levels. Taking creatine and bone broth are also methods to lower your homocysteine.

 Vitamin B12 is only found in animal foods - which is the reason vegans need to inject B12 to stay alive or consume it through other means.

Having gastrointestinal issues, the use of prescription medicine and chronic stress are other reasons for B12 deficiency.

The bottom line? Once again a great choice that B12 is included - deficiencies do lower brain performance and there's almost no risk of overdosing this vitamin.

 

Key Takeaway From The Science On These Ingredients

I really love the ingredient choices in Mindlab Pro. The only downside is that some of the most essential ingredients, such as Lion's Mane, phosphatidylserine, citicoline, and Rhodiola Rosea are not dosed as high as they should. Bacopa Monnieri is another example.

If you're taking the regular dose of Mindlab Pro, you're then not ending up with the dosage that has demonstrated benefits in many studies.

 

3. My Experience Using Mind Lab Pro For A Month

I've taken the Mindlab Pro supplement for over a month now, mostly during December 2019. 

I must say that I'm a big (220-pound) guy so I've experimented with two different dosages as well as taking days off without any Mindlab Pro.

During days I used the nootropic stack, I've either taken 2 or 4 pills. Each container contains 60 capsules, so you'd get 30 days worth of supplements taking 2 pills and half of that taking 4.

The justification for taking a higher dose than recommended on the packaging is that I would need higher doses of substances to really get an effect.

My findings?

Let's take a look below:

 

A. Better Mood

The first thing I notice on Mindlab Pro is a slightly to a significantly better mood. 

I know from experimenting with several individual ingredients in the nootropic stack what might most likely be responsible for the mood-boosting effect.

First, I respond very, very well to Rhodiola Rosea. I've got kind of a type-A personality (and sometimes joke that I've got a type triple-A personality) so anything that reduces jitters and anxiety works very well for me.

Coffee and caffeine achieve the direct opposite of that result, moreover, and thus don't work that well with my personal physiology.

Secondly, compounds such as theanine and phosphatidylserine also lower stress while giving you a smooth and clean focus - further relaxing me and improving my mood.

The tyrosine and B-vitamins may also aid in boosting mood, but, due to my high-quality diet I'm not deficient in them and I don't think they contribute to the mood-boosting effect in my instance.

How significant is the mood boost?

Well, most people (including me) are a terrible judge of what's happening inside their bodies. A very recent study (2019) showed that 87% of participants couldn't tell whether they had been administered 5 mg per kilogram body weight of caffeine, for instance (157).

If you weigh 60 kilograms (132 pounds), that's 300 mg of caffeine, equalling 3 cups of coffee. 

So, it's reasonable to expect that some of the results I was having were attributable to the placebo effect.

However, after my bottle of Mindlab Pro was finished and I didn't take the supplement on days I was doing grind work (such as writing), I did feel somewhat poorer in terms of mood.

 

B. Greater Brain Performance

Again, the ingredients included in Mindlab Pro work really well for my individual physiology - the same may not be true for you.

The stress-lowering effects of rhodiola, theanine, and phosphatidylserine (and perhaps the choline) really bring my bring into the zone.

For you, if you're not a type-A personality (and thus naturally "Zen"), then supplements like coffee and modafinil might work wonders. 

I also know from previous experiments that the aforementioned ingredients help my overall cognitive performance.

Other ingredients such as maritime bark extract and lion's mane mushrooms I've not yet tested individually, so it's harder for me to comment on their performance-enhancing effects.

Of course, in the short-term, the blood flow increasing effects of the maritime bark extract and in the long-term, the nerve growth potential of Lion's Mane will almost certainly contribute to improving cognitive performance.

 

Does Mindlab Pro make me more productive?

I've not measured the outcome but the answer is almost certainly "yes". I'd say I accomplish about 10-25% more on a day if I take 4 capsules of Mindlab Pro.

And while a 10% or 25% increase in productivity sound nothing like a "Limitless pill" that allows you to get a week of productivity in 1 day (or 1 hour)...

No.. Mindlab Pro is nothing like that...

And yet, I'll make the case that this nootropic stack can be an absolute game-changer for your cognitive performance.

Why?

Simple:

Let's start with a worst-case scenario and say you're earning $10 an hour, which is very close to the minimum wage in many countries.

Mindlab Pro costs anywhere between $2-4 per day.

If you are 10% more productive on an 8-hour working day, however, you'll earn an additional $8 (over the long run, assuming markets are efficient). At 25%, that's an additional $20 in your pocket right there.

And if you're earning an average of $30 an hour?

In that case, a 10% increase in productivity would net you $24 on an 8-hour working day, at the cost of $2-4 per day.

My point?

You cannot afford not taking nootropic stacks that improve your overall performance. In the future, everyone will be using such nootropic stack instead of chugging down 5 cups of coffee each day.

  

C. Subtle Effects

Once again, for me the effects of Mindlab Pro are pretty subtle and not "in your face" at all.

A compound like modafinil, for instance, is totally different in the sense that you'll almost certainly feel the effects 30-90 minutes after taking a standard dose. To many people - including me - that modafinil effect is really obvious - the jitters, anxiety, and tunnel vision focus are almost unmistakable.

Mindlab Pro works in the background, and yet, the effects are more obvious than some other products out there, such as Plato (review coming soon!).

I'd say the effect is comparable to drinking one or two cups of coffee in terms of how noticeable it is.

  

D. Side-Effects

I rarely if ever experience any side-effects when taking nootropic stacks - including Mindlab Pro.

The only side-effect that is problematic comes from taking stimulants or substances that have many of the same properties of stimulants.

Examples are caffeine, adrafinil, and modafinil. For me, personally, these substances feel great because of their dopamine-boosting effects -- but all of these substances also inhibit my productivity.

How do I know?

On an average day, if I don't drink coffee and have slept very well, I can write anywhere between 2,500 and 3,500 words.

With coffee?

That number is a lot lower...

The upside is that Mindlab pro gives me most of the benefits of drinking coffee (enhanced mood) without any of the side-effects. I thus feel my dopamine (and serotonin in this case) levels increase while improving productivity at the same time.

Big win!

 

E. Tolerance Buildup

The effects of Mindlab Pro might have become slightly less obvious after taking it for a while.

There's some precedent to accept that tolerance buildup based on the extant scientific literature. Adaptogens such as Rhodiola Rosea, for instance, work best when they're cycled and may lose potency if you use them every single day.

However, I did cycle Mindlab Pro during my testing period, frequently taking days off. 

Other ingredients, moreover, such as lion's mane mushrooms should not be cycled but probably work best when taken continuously. The reason is that the nerve regeneration and creation of new brain cells is a continuous process instead of an intermittent one.

Overall, the tolerance buildup is not much of a problem because I can feel the effects pretty well after having cycled off for a few days.

 

 

F.  Would I Recommend Mindlab Pro?

*Drumrolls...*

The final moment:

Would I recommend this product?

Answer? Yes, I certainly do, if and only if you rely on higher-order brain performance on a daily basis.

It doesn't matter whether you are studying to be a nurse practitioner, are a business strategy consultant, or a professional chess player or gamer: in all those cases your brain function is of vital importance to your success.

Of course, I do recommend testing whether the product works well for you, and observing whether the benefits outweigh the downsides.

Many people spend $5 a day on Starbucks coffee alone to get their brains back online. So if options are now available that dramatically improve your performance without any of the side-effects of caffeine addiction, then the choice should be easy to make.

 

Testing different nootropics and supplements: a full-time job!

 

4. Comparing Mindlab Pro To Other Nootropic Stacks

Of course, the first question that pops up in your mind is this: "how do the benefits of Mindlab Pro compare to competitors' products such as Qualia Mind or Qualia Focus"

That's a great question.

Let's find out:

 

Mind Lab Pro Versus Qualia Mind

After lots of testing, Neurohacker's Qualia Mind is still the undisputed king of nootropic stacks.

But of course, there's a huge price difference between Qualia Mind and Mindlab Pro, with Qualia Mind's basic price without discounts being $140, it's more than double that of Mindlab Pro at $65 a bottle (though you can save on Qualia by using discount code FERGUS or buying on subscription, but the price is still a lot higher than MindLab Pro. Also, you can get MindLabPro for under $50 a bottle if you purchase 4 at a time).

While many differences can be found between the two products, two main effects stand out to me personally:

  1. Qualia Mind has much stronger dopamine boosting effects. The reason for that effect is that Qualia contains additional compounds that boost dopamine, such as artichoke extract, phenylalanine, Mucuna Pruriens (which contains the direct L-dopa precursor), and forskolin extract. 
  2. Qualia Mind has much stronger mood-boosting effects for me personally. I just feel really happy when using Qualia Mind and that effect is far more subtle with Mindlab Pro
  3. Many other effects exist as well that I won't go into here in detail...

Of course, both products are very hard to compare because they're not in the same price category.

Next up:

Mind Lab Pro Versus Qualia Focus

I cannot compare both very well because I've not tested Qualia Focus yet (but be sure to subscribe to my email list, as a Qualia Focus review will be out soon).

Qualia Focus is slightly more expensive ($70) than Mindlab Pro ($65) - if no discounts are applied. Though after using discount FERGUS they come out to be the same price.

Looking soley at the ingredient list, however, I would slightly favor Qualia Focus over Mindlab Pro in most instances. 

But Mindlab Pro does have two massive advantages over Focus in that:

  1. The ingredients included in Mindlab Pro are slightly less speculative in terms of the effects that can be expected from the scientific literature.
  2. Mindlab Pro does not contain any caffeine, unlike Qualia Focus. If you're trying to avoid caffeine (on most days) like me, then a caffeine-free stack has massive advantages.

I must admit one thing: I'm naturally somewhat biased towards nootropic ingredients that increase dopamine levels, simply because I feel great when having high-dopamine.

Excessively high dopamine, however, can also make you a bit otherworldly and absent-minded though.

Mindlab Pro which focuses more on lowering cortisol and adrenaline, and seems to be more serotonin and GABA dominant, has a more relaxing and smooth feeling than dopamine-dominant stacks such as both Qualia products.

I also still have to test Qualia Focus so I'll keep this a draw between the two products for now.

If you can't wait for the Focus update, then let me keep it simple for you:

  • At the end of the day you need to test a nootropic yourself to see how to effects you.
  • MindLab Pro is well formulated and well priced. 
  • Given this, I would recommend purchasing a bottle of MindLab Pro and trialling it for a month. By that time my Focus review should be out so you can make an informed decision moving forward.
  • Alternatively, if you are like Alex and don't want to be ingesting caffeine in pill form every day, then you either fork out more for the high end caffeine free Qualia Mind or settle with the caffeine free MindLab Pro.

  

Overall I thus think that Mindlab Pro is a very steady product that has great potential cognitive benefits. Let's consider a few questions that naturally arise whenever I talk about nootropics with (uninitiated) people:

(If you want to jump straight to the conclusion then just click HERE). 

 

5. What About...?

Believe it or not, most 90% of people you'll meet on the street don't even know what "nootropics" are. And you tell them, they'll probably think that you and I are using prescription drugs with massive long-term side effects.

I've therefore included a few FAQs about this product so that everyone may enjoy the benefits:

 

Is Taking Mindlab Pro Safe?

Yes, taking this supplement is very safe.

The only caveat?

If you're taking much higher dosages of Mindlab Pro, such as 6 or 8 capsules in one sitting, you may experience side-effects.

In such a case you're ingesting a very high dosage of "choline", for instance, which will have adverse health consequences.

You'll be ingesting 1,000 milligrams (1 gram) of citicoline in that instance, which is probably excessive.

Anything above 16 capsules I would consider very unsafe.

(Studies have investigated very high choline doses such as 2 grams per day, although such numbers are probably unreasonably high (15)

For that specific reason, I do recommend keeping the bottle of Mindlab Pro away from the reach of children. 

Do stay close to the recommended dosages prescribed by the manufacturer as well...

 

 

How Long Will It Take To Notice Results?

I noticed results almost immediately and I think most people have the same experience.

Some online sources state that it takes a week to a month to notice results, but I consider that statement complete nonsense.

Just like it won't take a week to notice effects from drinking a cup of coffee, the same is true when you're taking ingredients such as Rhodiola Rosea or phosphatidylserine.

Studies show, for instance, that phosphatidylserine lowers cortisol levels almost immediately while increasing your levels of testosterone as well (1; 2).

Hence, thinking that it would take a week or a month to get results from Mindlab Pro is ludicrous. 

Caveat: some of the ingredients in Mindlab Pro such as Lion's Mane might need a lot longer to work their magic, specifically regarding the regeneration of nerve tissue and brain cells.

Overall, if you don't notice anything within a few weeks, and cannot measure any improvements in your cognitive performance, steer clear of this product - it's not for you.

Will the effect build up over time?

Probably, yes.

That assessment accords to the experience many different people have with their reviews, who have been taking this product for longer.

Perhaps in the future, I'll add a 6-month review with this product! 

 

Is Mindlab Pro Vegan?

Yes, Mindlab Pro is 100% vegan - although some ingredients are included that are normally only found in animal foods, such as vitamin B12, These nutrients have been recreated in a way that's compatible with veganism.

 

What Dose Should I Use?

The suggested dose is 2 capsules on an empty stomach. For me, a 4-capsule dose worked slightly better. 

I don't think it's smart to exceed the 4 capsule dosage because you might ingest excessive amounts of choline in relation to other nutrients in the diet, for instance. 

 

Your Listed Ingredients Differ From What Other Websites List Online

It seems that Mindlab Pro was reformulated in 2019. 

Some older webpages still talk about ingredients that are no longer included today, such as Huperzine-A, Pterostilbene, and Vinpocetine. 

I've not reviewed these ingredients as they're no longer included in the product. The B-vitamins are added in the new formulation, compared to older ones.

I'd loved to have tried the old version as well!

 

 

6. Finishing Thoughts: Bring On The Nootropic Revolution

My final verdict?

Mindlab Pro is an excellent product that can fill the niche of $50-100 nootropic stacks that's currently underrepresented. 

On the one hand, some people find the more expensive class of nootropic stacks such as Qualia Mind too expensive for everyday use. And on the other hand, many people are also averse in buying individual powders online themselves and making sure they get a nootropic effect.

Additionally, other stacks that only contain a few ingredients may not be as noticeable in their effects - for instance, if you buy Ashwagandha and Rhodiola Rosea pills, you still end up with only 2 ingredients.

Hence, Mindlab Pro hits the golden mean in both number of ingredients and price point. Once again, an excellent product.

The nootropic stack revolution can finally begin. Hopefully, in 2030 a sachet of nootropics will replace Coca Cola soda in vending machines...

To purchase MindLab Pro or to learn more about the product, head to MindLabPro.com

This is a post by Bart Wolbers. Bart finished degrees in Physical Therapy (B), Philosophy (BA and MA), Philosophy of Science and Technology (MS - Cum Laude), and Clinical Health Science (MS), and is currently the chief science writer at Alexfergus.com. Read more of Barts articles HERE.

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