30-Second Review

8.4

Value Ranking
(#3 OUT OF 10)

8.8

Quality Ranking
(#5 OUT OF 10)

8.6

Overall Score
(GOOD)


Emoji-Smiley-106

One of the better ginko biloba supplements


Emoji-Smiley-107

Expensive option

Details

Lumonol is a nootropic supplement that claims to bolster your ability to focus, remember things, and banish fear and nervousness.  Its formulation is based on three types of ingredients, intended to boost focus, energy, and memory.

 

Ingredients

 

The formulation strategy of Lumonol rotates around the function of the three herbal/supplemental blends.  These are complimented by a massive dose of vitamin B12—250 micrograms, which is equivalent to over 4,000% of your recommended daily intake.  Vitamin B12 does not appear to have any ill effects at high dosages, though, so this isn't an unsafe move.

 

Aside from vitamin B12, which is a classic energy drink ingredient, the energy blend also includes guarana, hordenine, and ginseng, herbal extracts intended to boost your metablism or energy levels.  Guarana is likely the most familiar of these; it's a natural source of caffeine that is often included in energy drinks as an alternative to pure caffeine.  The inclusion of guarana without the disclosure of the actual caffeine content is an unfortunate and misleading choice.

 

Hordenine is a little-studied extract from barley that is thought to increase metabolism, and the ginseng was actually included in a 2015 reformulation after the FDA ruled a previous ingredient, picamilon, was an illegal adulterant (1)

 

The focus blend includes tyrosine, acetyl-L-carnitine, and phosphatidyl serine, along with the self-proclaimed "heavy lifter" chemical, noopept.

 

Finally, the memory blend includes the herbal extracts ginkgo biloba and alpha GPC.  Gingko biloba is known to have a direct nootropic effect, while alpha GPC is thought to deliver choline, an essential nutrient, to the brain, enhancing brain performance in a secondary way.

 

Benefits

 

The caffeine that's an inevitable part of the guarana extract is a known performance enhancer when it comes to cognitive abilities (2).  However, how much it's going to help is hard to say—we don't know how much caffeine is in this supplement! The formulation lists the energy blend as containing 430 mg of total ingredients, but as for how this is split up among the four constituents, it's impossible to say.  So the energetic benefits are uncertain.

 

As for noopept, the synthetic "heavy lifter" in the focus blend, research is in the very early stages.  Studies on mice from researchers in Russia have identified some potentially useful effects, but studies in humans are sorely lacking (3).  It appears that noopept helps certain biochemical pathways in the brain, but not others.  Larger, better-controlled trials would be needed to definitively establish its use as a nootropic.

 

Noopept is chemically related to a category of chemicals called racetams, which have been used with some success to lessen the severity of neurological disorders like Alzheimer's disease (4).  As is often the case, we need to make a pretty big leap of faith—namely, assuming that a compound that helps a sick person think normally will help a healthy person think even better—if we are to conclude that noopept is going to be a helpful compound.

 

On the memory front, the combination of ginkgo biloba and ginseng (technically grouped in the "focus blend") does actually appear to be an efficacious duo of ingredients for enhancing memory.  A 2000 study by K.A. Wesnes and other researchers at a private research company in the UK found that a mixture of these two herbal supplements was able to improve memory quality among healthy middle-aged volunteers by about 7.5% compared to a placebo pill (5).  That being said, it's hard to verify whether Lumonol actually includes the same ratio and amount of each of these ingredients, because of the labeling issue.  Only the aggregate amounts in the "blends" are disclosed on the label; we don't know the amount of each ingredient.

 

As for the alpha GPC, it's been studied as a potential treatment for neurodegenerative diseases: one study found substantial cognitive improvement in a six-month trial of alpha GPC among patients suffering from mild to moderate dementia (6).  Some other nootropic formulations that include alpha GPC have been found to have brain-boosting properties, but direct trials of alpha GPC alone in healthy adults are rare.

 

Side Effects

 

As with any supplement containing caffeine, the usual cautions apply to Lumonol.  It could cause nausea, jitteriness, and irritability.  Concerns about this are magnified in the specific case of this supplement because we don't actually know how much caffeine is in it.  All we know is that it's less than 430 mg, which isn't too helpful.  A dosage of 200 mg versus 50 mg is a big difference! For this reason alone, Lumonol is risky.

 

On top of that, noopept is an untested and unproven synthetic chemical which has some concerning side effects reported to be associated with it.  A Russian study published in 2008 reported sleep disturbances and medically dangerous blood pressure changes (7).

 

For these reasons, Lumonol appears to have a higher risk of adverse effects than other nootropics on the market.

 

The Bottom Line

 

At the end of the day, Lumonol does have some ingredients with active and proven properties.  Its combination of ginkgo biloba and ginseng appears to be a solid pair of herbal extracts for improving memory, and caffeine is a reliable go-to energy booster and performance enhancer.

 

However, the presence of untested and potentially risky ingredients like noopept make Lumonol a more risky choice than some of its competitors.  Its main use would be for improving memory.  It's definitely not a sleep aid, given its caffeine content, and there aren't any major mood-boosting or focus-enhancing properties for the rest of its ingredients.