Update 3/9/20. I never know where I’m going to get ideas for reviews. Take Andro400 for example. I first heard the Andro400 radio commercial as I sat in a doctor’s office waiting for a checkup. The Andro400 supplement was said to help not only with belly fat and weight loss but also, improve memory, boost libido by up to 90% and alleviate issues of low testosterone too. Does it work? I must admit Andro400 did not contain what I thought it did. If you were also curious about this supplement, keep reading and discover what I found.
Clinical research on Andro400 itself could not be located. As such it's necessary to look at the research on its ingredients.
When I first heard the name of this supplement, my guess was that it contained androstenedione, known in bodybuilding circles as “Andro.” I was wrong. Andro 400 does not contain andro. According to its website – Andro400.com – 1 capsule contains these 3 ingredients:
- Eurycoma longifolia 250 mg
- L Arginine 250 mg
- L Citrulline 250 mg
The recommended amount to take is 2 capsules per day. As such, taking 2 capsules provides:
- 500 mg of Eurycoma longifolia
- 500 mg of L arginine
- 500 mg of L citrulline
Or, 1500 milligrams of everything per day.
Since none of the ingredients equals 400 mg, I’m not sure where the “400” in the name comes from.
Andro 400 Max and UltraMaxT
There are 3 different versions of this supplement:
- Andro400 Max
- UltraMax T
The difference is that the regular formulation only contains Eurycoma longifolia. Andro400 Max – which is what I’m reviewing here –contains the 3 ingredients listed above.
Since Andro400 is primarily supplement marketed to raise testosterone levels, let’s now review the research on each of these ingredients as they pertain to testosterone.
Take notice of the amounts used in the studies.
Other names for this herb are Malaysian ginseng, Lonjack and Tongkat Ali. This herb is very popular in testosterone supplements and those geared for “Low T” as is evidenced by reviews on these other supplements I’ve looked at previously:
- Regimen (click to read review)
- Syntheroid (click to read review)
- Triverex (click to read review)
Tongkat Ali Research
In this clinical study, 13 healthy non-athletes were given either a placebo or 400 mg of Eurycoma longifolia for 6 weeks. The study used a specific supplement called “Physta” made by Biotropics Malaysia Berhad.
Results: Eurycoma longifolia had no effect on testosterone levels as measured in the urine.
In another investigation, 25 older men and women were recruited. All were physically active individuals.
Results: After 5 weeks of use, 400 mg of tongkat ali (eurycoma longifolia) increased testosterone levels in both men and women.
This study differs from the one above it. this might mean that eurycoma longifolia works differently in older vs. younger people.
While this is an interesting study, one possible problem is that there was no placebo group to compare the results. In theory, this may have influenced some of the outcomes in the study.
TongKat Ali Review
Watch on my YouTube channel
A 2013 study titled Effect of Tongkat Ali on stress hormones and psychological mood state in moderately stressed subjects. Here, 64 men and women were randomly given either a placebo or 200 mg of a eurycoma longifolia supplement (the supplement used was Physta, made by Biotropics Malaysia Berhad). The study lasted 4 weeks.
Results: These researchers noted that the Physta supplement increased testosterone levels (by 37%) as well as improving various aspects of mood. It’s worth noting that this study showed no changes in body fat. This appears to contradict claims that Andro400 helps weight loss.
One possible drawback this study is that it did not mention the ages of the participants. Knowing this would make it easier to compare these results to those taking part in other studies.
Based on this research, if eurycoma is going to work, its effects might be greatest in older adults and when used amounts greater than 400 mg per day.
Arginine and L Citrulline
Both of these are non-essential amino acids (we make them) and are common in anabolic hormone booster supplements. Let’s address each separately.
Also called “L arginine.” Arginine is reputed to increase growth hormone levels. I covered arginine in my review of SeroVital so see that for additional information.
Arginine also helps us make nitric oxide, a gas that expands blood vessels. Because of this fact, arginine is popular in male performance supplements (erection supplements) too. For more on nitric oxide, see my review of SuperBeets.
That said, either way, you look at it, 2 capsules of Andro400 is only providing 500 mg of arginine, which isn’t a lot. Studies showing improvement in erection problems have used about 5 grams a day. Studies of arginine improving growth hormone levels have also used a lot of it, between 5-9 grams per day.
This amino acid helps us make arginine. As such, I think one reason supplements contain citrulline is that, by helping us make arginine, it might help us also raise growth hormone levels.
Because it can also improve nitric oxide levels (by helping us make more arginine), citrulline is also found in erection supplements too. Like, arginine, it might help erections, although most of the studies I saw involved lab rats.
In this study,1.5 grams of citrulline was shown to improve erections in men compared to a placebo.
What about growth hormones? In this study 15 grams did not appear to raise growth hormone levels in a small group of men.
The 15 grams used in this study is a lot more than the 500 mg of citrulline contained in 2 capsules of Andro 400.
Andro400 and Belly Fat
I am not aware of any good proof that Andro400 or its ingredients target belly fat, causing weight loss from this region of the body.
Andro400 and Women
I’m not aware of any good proof that Andro400 or its ingredients improve sexual function or alters testosterone levels in women. Likewise, I am not aware of any good proof that the ingredients promote weight loss either.
How Much Is Andro 400?
When I wrote this review, the product website had these prices:
- Andro 400: $29.95 per month
- Andro 400 Max $34.95 per month
Ordering from the Andro400.com website does enter people into an auto-ship program where they will ship a new bottle each month until you cancel. To contact Andro400 customer support, call 888-400-0435.
Who Makes Andro400
According to the product website, the company is called Natural Health Solutions. Their address is: 5407 N. Haverhill Rd, Suite 336 West Palm Beach, FL 33407. Another company name is Z Natural Foods (znaturalfoods.com). The Better Business Bureau gives Z Natural Foods a rating of “A+.”
Andro 400 Guarantee
The product website states that Andro 400 comes with a 90-day money-back guarantee. The bottles can be partially empty, or completely empty. That’s good. People have to return the bottles to the company to be eligible for a refund.
It is important to remember that the 90-day guarantee starts the day you order the product – not when it arrives. Contact customer support for more on this. You can reach them by calling 800-400-0435 or emailing them at Support@andro400.com.
How to Contact Andro 400
The Andro400.com website lists this phone number for customer support: 888-400-0435. You can also email them at Support@andro400.com too. I recommend calling. I found their customer service people very responsive to calls and questions.
Andro400 Side Effects
I’m not aware of any side effects from taking Andro400. When I searched online I didn’t see much about side effects either. That said, below is a list of theoretical side effects that some people might notice. This list is not complete. Speak with your doctor and/or pharmacist if you think any of this applies to you:
- Start with less than suggested for the first week
- Not intended for kids
- Not intended for women
- Stop taking at least 2 weeks before surgery
- People who take blood pressure-lowering medications should speak to their doctor/pharmacy
- Arginine might have a blood thinner effect. This might interfere with blood thinner medications.
- People who have had a heart attack should speak to their doctor before using arginine supplements.
- Arginine might cause flare-ups of the herpes virus
Does Andro 400 Work?
I didn’t try Andro400 so I can’t know for sure, but based on the research I saw, if it’s going to work –by that I mean if it’s going to raise testosterone – I believe Eurycoma longifolia may be the active ingredient.
If you are going to try Andro400 (or eurycoma longifolia) you may want to consider getting your testosterone levels checked before you start the supplement– and measure them again a month later. This is the only way to really know if it works or not.
Here it is if you want to check it out
What supplement do you recommend for erectile dysfunction?
Lein, its a complex topic. More than any supplement, the thing that I feel has the most proof is weight loss and eating more fruits and vegetables. I know that’s probably not the answer people want to hear from someone who calls himself the “supplement geek.” It’s just that I go where the evidence leads me.
Mark Thorson says
The pet food incident was not heavy metals. It was melamine, a plastic rich in nitrogen which was used to fool the test used to evaluate protein content. The test actually measured amine content, and melamine has lots of amine. The head of China’s version of the FDA was executed for allowing that to happen.
Testing the purity of chemicals like arginine and citrullline is easy, and any cGMP-compliant manufacturer will be doing that as part of incoming inspection of their ingredients. They aren’t going to be relying on the word of the China-based source. There’s plenty of Chinese manufacturers who produce good quality raw materials, and they will have the lowest price. Many pure chemicals used in supplements and food come from China, and that’s perfectly safe if they are tested for purity by the company receiving those chemicals.
China is a big country, and it’s completely wrong to blanketly condemn the whole place as polluted. Water pollution is a big problem, but that doesn’t mean everything grown China has contamination. Heavy metals are easy to detect using AAS, so that’s actually one of the less likely hazards. I’d be much more concerned about insecticides and fungicides that aren’t approved in the U.S. such as quintozene, but those can be detected by HPLC albeit at higher cost than AAS. (AAS is simple, fast, and cheap — but it only determines inorganic content, such as metals.)
There are some things that are difficult to test, like filth. Usually this is done by plate count — the number of bacterial colonies you can grow from a sample of the material. But you can fumigate a dirty material with ethylene oxide gas to reduce plate count, so even that test can be gamed. For botanical ingredients, you really can’t rely on testing for quality. You must have your own people on the ground monitoring every step of the process. Some companies do that, and they get first-class products from third-world countries. Some even have their own farms in South America and Asia to source botanical ingredients, many of which simply can’t be grown outside of the tropics.
Botanicals are inherently higher risk. They can get moldy, and mold can produce powerful carcinogens and liver toxins. That’s a problem both overseas and in the U.S. Aflatoxins from mold in peanuts and corn are a big problem for U.S. agriculture. On the other hand, pure chemicals are easy to test and pose very low risk even if they are from China. If you take supplements or eat commercially made food (like bread or crackers), you’ve already been exposed to plenty of these chemicals.
Mark Thorson says
You can’t really get away from China as a source for pure chemicals like arginine and citrulline. China’s chemical industry is the low cost source, and it’s straightforward to make chemicals like these at high purity. It’s also easy to test them for purity. China-sourced chemicals are used by pretty much the whole supplement industry.
Herbs are a different story. They are difficult to test for quality, purity, and potency. For some herbs there are AOAC tests for potency, but those can be fooled if the product is spiked with a synthetic analog of the molecule being tested. You can get good herbal ingredients from China (or anywhere else) but only if you have your own people supervising the whole supply chain and an effective testing program.
I do not remember the dates of these incidents, but I am sure they are verifiable on Google.
1.) Dog food from China resulted in the deaths of many dogs, in the United States and around the world, due to toxic levels of heavy metals.
2.) The largest facility in China, responsible for “purity and content”, were found to be woefully inadequate, with over 35% of ALL the products granted a “safe for human consumption” designation, containing toxic levels of cadmium. The “purity and content” of raw ingredients coming from China are not validated in the United States, but in China, where the Chinese people themselves are being poisoned from the rice they eat. Toxic levels of heavy metals, and other contaminants, are seeping into the ground (due to the ultra-high air pollution) and the into the root system of plants used as raw ingredients for most of the products exported from China.
There are many US-based sources for these raw ingredients, but independent research on the part of the consumer is required. If a consumer is going to take an herb or other non-pharmaceutical product not regulated by the FDA, the consumer must look up the company that makes the product and make sure they are GMP-compliant, or Good Manufacturing Practices, which means they are US tested for both content (no contaminants, like cadmium) and purity (what is on the label is what is in the product, and in the dosage stated on the label).
Most consumers just pop supplements and other herbs and such in their mouths by the handful without giving any consideration as to the source, the content, or the purity of the products they ingest.
This is usually the case with any and ALL supplements that claim to do anything regarding increasing testosterone levels, or anything at all. You must be extremely careful when purchasing supplements because they may do nothing at all, or may cause liver toxicity or other side effects. Additionally, the prices may be very high, essentially charging high prices for a supplement that does nothing more than take money out of your wallet. The origin of these supplements must also be considered. If the origin is CHINA, choose another product from another country of origin.
The two amino acids, Cirtuline and Arginine are two non-essential amino acids. Non-essential means that your body creates both of these amino acids naturally and does not need to be obtained through food. The amount of both of these amino acids are 500mg each. This is NOTHING. These are amounts that are so low, as to be pretty much negligible.
The only thing in Andro-400 that appears to do anything regarding raising testosterone levels, is the herb Eurycoma longifolia. There is some recent (as of 2015) research regarding the herb’s ability to raise testosterone levels safely, which means there are fewer side effects than traditional Testosterone Replacement Therapy, such as Androgel.
There are three things that are missing from this study. One, there are no “placebo” trials, two, there are no doses mentioned (how much was used), and three, what type of testosterone was raised, free or bound testosterone (there is a huge difference).
Is Andro-400 effective and safe? Safe, probably, as there are no ingredients that appear toxic. Effective, probably not.
You would be better off going to GNC, or any other reputable health food store, and purchasing amino acid liquids. The amino acid concentration of ALL 20 amino acids found in these liquids are much higher than what is found in Andro-400, and are sufficiently high to make a difference. Additionally, you can purchase the herb, Eurycoma longifolia, in concentrated form, probably at any decent health food store. This way, you know the exact dosage of each ingredient (both amino acids and the herb) and they are high enough to be of therapeutic value.
You may pay more to buy the ingredients individually, but only slightly, but you will be guaranteed a more effective product.
If you are an older male (age 60 or older), get a base-line free and bound testosterone level checked. Then take the supplements for two months, and have your levels checked again by your doctor. If your levels are higher, after two months of supplementation, then you know they are working. If not, then you know they don’t.
There are other symptoms of low-T. Increased belly fat, depression-like symptoms, and loss of bone mass, are the three biggest ones. The belly fat and depression are both symptoms that you can monitor yourself, and if you see a decrease in one, or both, after two months of supplementation, then you know the supplement may be working.
Bottom line, as with ANY supplement, critical thinking skills must be employed, independent research must be done (primarily on pubmed.com), and don’t believe everything you hear, ESPECIALLY from Dr. Oz, who has become a whore for supplement companies, regardless of their proven efficacy (effectiveness).
Tom, good points made. About the study you referenced, I did see it when I was writing the review. I omitted it due to the little bit I could glean from the summary and because it was authored by Biotropics Malaysia, which makes the “Physta” Eurycoma longifolia supplement mentioned in a couple of the other studies I linked to. I’m looking forward to other studies on that particular product.
The product is made in Malaysia? I would strongly recommend against using the product. Malaysia is not known for their strict GMP (Good Manufacturing Practices). Foreign-made supplements, or anything put into your body, may contain toxic substances, simple sugars, or other substances not listed on the label.
Just as I would not trust ingesting any product made in China, I would not trust any product made in Malaysia, and for the same reasons.
Tom, that is possible but I’m not sure. They are located in Malaysia, here is their website: http://biotropicsmalaysia.com/