Update 1/8/20. Have you seen the TV commercials for Nugenix featuring MLB star Frank Thomas? It's been a few years since I originally reviewed this natural testosterone booster supplement and so I thought it was worth a second look. In this review, I'll reveal the research on Nugnix Ultimate, which by the name, implies it's the most powerful version of this low T supplement. I'll look at the research on the ingredients too. Does it have any side effects? How does it compare to other natural testosterone supplements? Keep reading and lets see what we can figure out. Also, see the original Nugenix review too.
Who Is Nugenix For?
From the TV commercials I've seen over the years, Nugenix is designed for men over 40 who are experiencing symptoms associated with low testosterone (“low T”). From the commercial, symptoms of having low hormone levels can include:
- Reduced libido
- Increased body fat
- Feeling tired / having less energy
- Reduce muscle
- Reduced “drive”
Issues like these, however, might be due to other things so it's always good to get checked out by your doctor first if you are feeling any of these problems.
What Does The Name Mean?
Since the name Nugenix sounds a lot like the word eugenics, I think it's a play on words. Eugenics is the controversial branch of science dealing with improving desirable characteristics in the human race through selective breeding. I think the name is mean to mean to subtly convey that the supplement will improve desirable traits in men. Either way, it's a total guess on my part. Take it for what it is.
Nugenix Ultimate Benefits
The product label states it will provide the following benefits:
- Boost free testosterone
- Maximize muscle strength
- Increase drive and vitality
- Modulate androgenic activity
These benefits sound great – except most of them are so vague that they really don't mean anything. Think about it. What does “increase drive and vitality” really mean? The same thing goes for “modulate androgenic activity.” How is the activity being modulated?
The only specific claim I see here is the boosting of free testosterone levels. This is a measurable outcome and something we can test for. We know testosterone is an androgenic hormone and plays roles in muscle growth as well as emotional health and vitality. As such, testosterone-boosting will be the central focus of this review.
Nugenix Ultimate Research
The product website (Nugenix.com) does not provide any references to clinical research on the product itself. To dig deeper, I did an internet search for:
- Nugenix Research
- Nugenix Clinical research
No relevant studies showed up.
I then searched ClinicalTrials.gov and Pubmed.gov but likewise turned up no research. Therefore, I'm forced to conclude the product – itself – has not yet been tested in published, clinical trials to see if it really raises anabolic hormone levels.
But what about its ingredients?
Let's now look at the different ingredients in Nugenix Ultimate and see what we can discover.
Nugenix Ultimate Ingredients
From the product website (Nugenix.com) we discover 4 capsules of Nugenix Ultimate contains these ingredients:
|Ingredient||Amount Per Serving (4 capsules) & Percent Daily Value|
|D-Aspartic Acid||3000 mg ( N/A)|
|Fenugreek Extract (Trigonella foenum-graecum)(standardized to 50% saponins)||700 mg (N/A)|
|Boron (as Boron Citrate)||10 mg (N/A)|
|Epimedium grandiflorum||650 mg (N/A)|
|Mucuna Pruriens Extract (Mucuna pruriens) (seed) (standardized to 20% L-dopa)||250 mg (N/A)|
|Maca Root (lepidium meyenii) PWD||250 mg (N/A)|
|Stinging Nettle Extract (Urtica diocia) (root)||360 mg (N/A)|
|Tongkat Ali 100:1 Extract (Eurycoma longifolia jack) (root)||200 mg (N/A)|
In the table above, “N/A” means no Daily Value established.
The product website tells us Nugenix Ultimate also contains the following:
- vegetable gum
- stearic acid
- croscarmellose sodium
- silicon dioxide
- dicalcium phosphate dehydrate
- microcrystalline cellulose
- vegetable magnesium stearate
- hypromellose (coating)
These other ingredients play no role in the effects of Nugenix Ultimate.
Nugenix Ultimate Ingredient Research
Lets now look at the relevant research on the ingredients in the product. By relevant I mean, research showing those ingredients' ability to boost testosterone levels in humans.
In some circles, D-aspartic acid is a very popular natural testosterone booster. Indeed, there is some animal research suggesting it might work.
But what about people? Let's look at the human evidence. Remember, taking 4 capsules of Nugenix Ultimate provides 3000 mg (3 grams) of D-aspartic acid.
Researchers in 2017 gave either a placebo or 6 grams (6000 mg) of D-aspartic acid to 22 men (age 18-36 years) who also participated in a strength training program. The study lasted 12 weeks. To quote the researchers D-aspartic acid “is ineffective at changing testosterone levels.” Those taking the supplement did not get any stronger than the men taking a placebo.
A study published in 2015 gave 24 healthy young men who exercised regularly either 3 grams or 6 grams of D-aspartic acid or a placebo each for 2 weeks. These researchers noted 3 grams (3000 mg) of D-aspartic acid had no effect on anabolic hormone levels. Ironically, when the men took 6 grams, it decreased (not increased) both their total testosterone and free testosterone levels.
Researchers in 2013 gave 3000 mg of D-aspartic acid or a placebo to men for 28 days. At the end of the investigation, it was concluded that D-aspartic acid “is ineffective in up-regulating the activity of the hypothalamo-pituitary-gonadal axis and has no anabolic or ergogenic effects in skeletal muscle.”
In other words, it didn't make the men stronger or boost their testosterone level.
Bottom line: Despite the hype, proof for the anabolic nature of D-aspartic acid less than spectacular.
By taking 4 capsules of Nugenix Ultimate, you are getting 700 mg of fenugreek extract.
Fenugreek is a popular ingredient in anabolic hormone supplements. Other products, previously reviewed which also contain fenugreek include:
Fenugreek is also popular with male enhancement supplements such as the following which have also been reviewed:
Given its popularity with supplements, what is the proof it really works?
Researchers in 2010 gave 49 healthy men who worked out regularly either a placebo or 500 mg of fenugreek for 8 weeks. After the study, fenugreek failed to raise testosterone levels. Ironically, the study did find those taking fenugreek improved better upper and lower body strength compared to the placebo group. Personally, I'm skeptical of this and would like to see the study replicated.
Boron is a trace mineral (by trace, I mean we don't need much of it). I first heard about boron's testosterone boosting effects back in the 1990s. I feel the same way today as I did back then on it – there is no good proof it works. In 1993, NASA commissioned a small study where 10 bodybuilders were given 2.5 mg of boron for 7 weeks. There was no change in testosterone levels.
In 2011, Iranian researchers gave 8 men in their 40s either a placebo or 11.6 mg of boron for 1 week. They noted boron supplementation significantly raised free testosterone. But, there was no change in total testosterone.
A big drawback to this study is it involved only 8 people. This may not be enough to see a true effect.
On the plus side, this study did involve men in their 40s. On the downside, I could not determine if the men had low levels of boron at the start of the study. Research from the 1980s has noted boron raised testosterone when given to women who were placed on a low boron diet.
The more common name for this supplement is “Horny Goat Weed.” As such, it's no surprise that epimedium is also common to male enhancement supplements.
Those types of supplements notwithstanding, does it boosts testosterone? Well, there is a compound in epimedium called icariin, which lab rat research hints may boost testosterone. But, that's in a rat. What about humans,? I can't say at this time.
The Triverex review has more on this herb.
Mucuna Pruriens Extract
This is a type of bean, hence it's alternative name, velvet bean. In other supplements, it may be called cowhage. From the product label, we might guess the extract used is L-dopa. In lab animals, L-dopa has been shown to increase Luteinizing hormone (LH). This is important because LH raises testosterone levels.
So, the idea is that…
- mucuna pruriens, provides L-dopa which raises LH, which in turn, raises testosterone
It's a great idea – but does it really work? I cannot find any proof of Mucuna Pruriens boosting testosterone in people.
Maca Root (lepidium meyenii) PWD
The “PWD” probably stands for powder. Maca is popular in supplements for “low-T” but I'm not convinced it helps. Case in point is this 2003 investigation involving 53 men (21-56 years of age). Researchers gave the men either 300 mg or 1500 mg of maca or a placebo and followed them for 12 weeks. No change in testosterone or other anabolic hormones were observed.
Also, see these reviews
Stinging Nettle Extract
Another name for this ingredient is Urtica dioica. Whenever I see “extract” I always wonder what extract is being used. I'm not sure what extract of stinging nettle is in Nugenix Ultimate.
Does it raise testosterone in humans? I cannot locate any evidence. In one 6 month-long study, involving 558 men with prostate problems, researchers gave the men either 360 mg of stinging nettle or a placebo per day. While stinging nettle did appear to provide prostate help, it did not raise testosterone levels. This is the same amount found in Nugenix Ultimate.
See the prostate-health supplement Prosvent for more on this herb.
Nugenix Ultimate provides 200 mg of this herbal in 4 capsules.
Eurycoma longifolia -aka, Tongkat Ali – is also popular in T booster and low libido supplements. It's also sometimes called “Long Jack.” To test the anabolic effects of this herb, investigators in 2014, gave 400 mg to 13 men (average age 29) who were followed for 6 weeks. This study found Eurycoma longifolia ineffective at boosting testosterone levels.
That same year, other researchers gave 13 men and 12 women 400 mg of Tongkat ali a day and followed them for 5 weeks. This study showed an improvement in testosterone levels in both men and women. While this is an intriguing observation, the study had no placebo group.
Prior to this, researchers in 2012 noted the herb worked. In this study, researchers gave 76 men with low T 200 mg of Eurycoma longifolia for one month and noted the herbal extract raised their testosterone levels.
The men reported on questionnaires that they felt better too.
One problem with Eurycoma longifolia studies is they usually don't involve many people. It would be interesting to give it to 100 people (young and older) and see what happens after a month.
So what do these studies mean? Does it work or doesn't it? It will take better research. The good news is the herb is inexpensive.
Nugenix Ultimate Active Ingredients
Based on the available evidence I could uncover, here are the ingredients which might raise testosterone levels:
Is it possible all the other ingredients in Nugenix Ultimate together produce a synergistic effect that is greater than this herb alone? Of course, this is possible. It would take clinical research to know for sure.
Does It Contain Testofen?
Testofen is an extract of the herb fenugreek. It's a patented compound. It's said to be the active ingredient in the Nugenix Natural Testosterone booster supplement. While Nugenix Ultimate does contain an extract of fenugreek, we are not told what the extract is. I did not see “Tesofen” listed on the product label.
See Free Testosterone booster review for more on Testofen.
Nugenix Ultimate vs. Nugenix Free Testosterone
There is more than one type of Nugenix. Other versions of this supplement include:
- Nugenix Free Testosterone
- Nugenix PM ZMA
See the original review of Nugenix to see all the supplement ingredients side-by-side.
How Do You Take It?
The product website states Nugenix Ultimate (4 capsules) should be taken on an empty stomach at least 30 minutes after eating before you work out. Given the product appears to lack clinical research I'm not sure how they know this is the best way to take it.
Also, maybe I'm nitpicking but it generally will take more than 30 minutes for the stomach to empty.
Do Cycle Nugenix?
Do you need to cycle on and off this supplement? The company basically says yes, you do. The product label states to take Nugenix Ultimate for no more than 4 weeks at a time – and then take 2 weeks off. This sure sounds like cycling to me. People are advised to not take more than 4 capsules per day.
Having said this, I can't locate any research where the product has been cycled. I wonder if the idea of taking two weeks off is for “just in case” precautions? On the plus side, given the price of Nugenix, taking 2 weeks off will save some money.
Do You Need To Exercise Too?
On Nugenix.com it's stated the supplement should be combined with strength training exercise. While I'm all for resistance training, my question to this is how do they know? To know for sure, we would need to see a few studies where people:
- Just took Nugenix (no exercise)
- Lifted weights while taking Nugenix
- Did nothing (placebo group)
Since I can't locate any studies on Nugenix itself, I can't say it works best when combined with resistance training. That' said, I'd say do the resistance training too because it's healthy.
What About The Nugenix Estrogen Blocker?
Nugenix also makes an estrogen blocker supplement. They call it the Nugenix Estro-Regulator. This supplement contains an ingredient called Diindolylmethane (DIM), also known as 3,3′-diindolylmethane. Food sources of DIM include cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, brussels sprouts, and cabbage.
One small, 2-week long study noted 300 mg of DIM, given to 7 women reduced estrogen in their thyroid glands. DIM also seemed to increase estrogen metabolism (reduce estrogen levels).
Another ingredient in the product is chrysin, which is found naturally in honey. One small study noted chrysin produced no change in testosterone after 3 weeks of use.
The estrogen regular is 49.99 per bottle. Does Nugenix Ultimate work better when combined with an estrogen blocker? I can't say given the lack of research. For what it's worth, weight loss will also reduce estrogen levels.
Where To Buy Nugenix
The supplement can be purchased a wide range of stores such as Walmart, Walgreens, Rite-Aid, CVS, GNC and Vitamin shoppe.
The Nugenix The Guarantee
When you purchase the supplement from the company website (Nugenix.com), the product comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee. Not only will the company refund your money, they will also refund all shipping and processing fees as well.
This ‘s very rare and I appreciate that level of guarantee.
If you need to return the product, you should contact Nugenix to find out the policy. With other supplements, this may require getting a Return Authorization Number (RMA) from the company before sending it back. See the “Who Makes Nugenix” section below for contact phone numbers.
What Is The Price?
Nugenix Ultimate is $89.99 per bottle. Each bottle has 120 tablets. Either way you slice it, this is a lot of money. It comes to about 0.75 cents per pill. It may be less expensive on Amazon.
Nugenix Free Trial Offer
The product website mentions a 14 trial but this is for regular Nugenix (“Free Testosterone”). There is no 14 free day trial offer for Ultimate Nugenix.
For those who want to try the Free Testosterone supplement, it works like this:
- Call Nugenix and pay $4.99 for shipping (and any tax your state collects)
- If you do not cancel, on day 18, you will receive a one month supply of Nugenix and your credit card will be charged $69.99 + 4.99 shipping/processing and tax. You will also be enrolled in their auto-shipment program, receiving deliveries of Nugenix each month until you cancel.
- If you do not want to receive automatic shipments of Nugenix, call the company before the 14 day trial period is over.
If you decide to return the 14-day trial offer, the company does not refund you back $4.99. That sounds reasonable to me.
If you decide to get regular shipments, you can cancel at any time for any reason. People are not locked into any contracts. I liked that.
Nugenix vs. Dr. Max Powers
Dr. Max Powers testosterone booster is a supplement I often see promoted on the web. How does it compare to Nugenix? While there doesn't seem to be any direct comparison research, the ingredients in each are quite different.
The Dr. Max Powers supplement contains 1000 mg of Tribulus Terrestris. Nugenix contains no Tribulus. While Tribulus is a popular ingredient, in my review of Tribulus, I saw no good proof It raised testosterone in humans.
Nugenix vs. Mdrive
Mdrive is another popular testosterone booster supplement. I've not seen any studies comparing how they stack up against each other. Here is a side-by-side comparison of Nugenx vs. Mdrive Classic and Mdrive Prime.
|Nugenix Ultimate||Mdrive Classic||Mdrive Prime (2 capsules)|
|D-Aspartic Acid 3000 mg||Vitamin D3 400 IU (100%DV)||Vitamin D3 400 IU (100%DV)|
|Fenugreek Extract 700 mg||Vitamin B6 10 mg (500%DV)||Niacin 50 mg (250%DV)|
|Boron 10 mg||Vitamin B12 120 mcg (2000%DV)||Vitamin B6 10 mg (500%DV)|
|Epimedium grandiflorum 650 mg||Proprietary Blend (1325mg) composed of the folllowing||Vitamin B12 120 mcg (2000%DV)|
|Mucuna Pruriens 250 mg||KSM 66 Ashwagandha extract||Chromium 200 mcg (267%DV)|
|Maca root 250 mg||Cordyceps extract||Complete Blend 710 mg composed of the following|
|Stinging Nettle Extract 360 mg||LJ 100 Eurycoma longifolia||KSM 66 Ashwagandha extract|
|Tongkat Ali 200 mg||Phytopine pine sterols||LJ 100 Eurycoma longifolia|
|Maca extract||Bioperine piperine|
The Nugenix Company?
Who makes Nugenix? Here is all the contact information I found:
The phone number listed on the product website is 1-855-714-3234.
On Nugenix.com, there are two contact address:
- USA: 2323 South 3600 West West Valley City, UT 84119.
- Canada: PO Box 500 North York, Ontario M3J 0J8 Canada
The US address corresponds to a fulfillment center (Xipix fulfillment). This is the company that takes the orders and sends out the product.
The actual company behind Nugenix is called Direct Digital LLC (DirectDigitalLLC.com). This company owns many supplement brands you may have heard of such as:
- Instaflex (click to read review)
Direct Digital has two locations:
- 550 S Caldwell St Suite 700Charlotte, NC 28202
- 116 Huntington Ave.Boston, MA 02116
Direct Digital LLC has an “A+” Rating with the better business bureau. See the BBB file for updates and more information.
What I liked & Didn't Like
Here's a quick rundown of the pros and cons for Nugenix Ultimate:
|What I liked||What I didn't Like|
|Some ingredients have research||Product -itself-lacks human clinical proof it works|
|Been around a long time||Most ingredients lack clinical proof of efficacy|
|The company (Direct Digital) has a very good BBB rating||Advertised claims are vague for the most part|
|30 day money back guarantee|
|Company does not hide ingredient amounts behind a "proprietary blend"|
These are my opinions. Judge for yourself how much these matter to you.
Nugenix Ultimate Side Effects
In healthy people, I think Nugenix is safe for most people. I'm not aware of any side effects in healthy people. Fortunately, this product is pretty popular in Amazon. So, while this is less than scientific, here is a list of things people there said about it:
|Pills are big / hard to swallow||Increased appetite||increased blood sugar level|
|Nightmares||Smelly urine||Stomach cramps / bloating / diarrhea|
|Headaches||More frequent urination||Faster hair/nail growth|
|Elevated heart rate and blood pressure||Weight loss|
A few people mentioned the pills are difficult to swallow so this is something to keep in mind. One person discussed how he had to go to the hospital with an elevated heart rate and blood pressure. Since this is just one claim, it's difficult to know what the exact cause was. While it could be a fluke, I thought it was wise to include it just in case.
As for whether it is effective at raising testosterone, I saw two comments from people who said they had their testosterone levels checked before and after using the product:
- One person said it elevated testosterone levels
- Another person said it didn't
Again this is hardly scientific. Take this for what it is.
Online comments notwithstanding, here are some things you should think about before using this Nugenix Ultimate:
- Do you really have low testosterone levels? Get them checked first.
- Stop taking Nugenix Ultimate at least 2 weeks before having surgery.
- Fenugreek may lower blood sugar
- Nugenix is not for women. I see no reason for women to take Nugenix it. But, for women reading this, who want to, don't take this supplement if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
- Teenagers and those in their 20s don't need Nugenix. Odds are your testosterone levels are already VERY high.
- Avoid if you are allergic to any of the ingredients.
- If you have heart or blood pressure issues, diabetes, psychological disorders or kidney or liver problems, speak to your doctor/pharmacist/dietitian.
- Speak to your doctor, pharmacist or dietitian if you take any medications.
Nugenix And Hair Loss?
Given that excess testosterone is linked to hair loss, I can understand how some might conclude low T supplements might be linked to premature baldness. That said, I cannot find any evidence linking Nugenix itself or its ingredients to hair loss or male pattern baldness. For what it's worth, I don't think it does this.
Is it possible the unique combination of ingredients might act differently and promote this? While anything is possible, I think it's very rare and I'd like to see the proof. I did not locate anyone online saying this supplement caused hair loss.
I wanted to bring this up because some low quality “review” sites hint testosterone boosters might do this.
What About Drug Testing?
Will Nugenix cause someone to fail a drug test? Given the reputation of steroids, I understand why someone would wonder about this. It's a good question but I see no proof it would. There appear to be no studies available showing drug test results after taking Nugenix. For what it's worth, I don't think it will do this.
If anyone failed a drug test after taking Nugenix, I'd like to hear from you. Leave a comment below.
Does Nugenix Ultimate Work?
While I prefer to see research on products, I did see some evidence for some of the ingredients in Nugenix Ultimate. If it really works, my guess is it might be most effective in men who have low testosterone levels. I don't think it would have much effect on younger men. If you really want to know if it works, get your testosterone levels checked first. Here is a home testosterone kit. Your doctor can do this for you too. Then, try Nugenix for a month. Then test your T levels again. Don't change anything else like your diet or exercise program. If Nugenix Ultimate really works, you should have your answer in a month.