Ageless Male is a supplement “clinically proven to improve testosterone levels by 50% but still keep those levels within a normal healthy range. Impressive, but does Ageless Male work? If you heard the commercial for Ageless Male on XM Radio like I did, you probably did the same thing as me – rush home to look it up on the web. I must admit the Ageless Male supplement did not contain what I thought, given all they alluded to such as improve sex drive, make bones stronger etc.
What is Ageless Male?
Ageless Male is marketed by New Vitality (NewVitality.com) which incidentally also goes by the name NAC Vitamin Company according to the Better Business Bureau. Ageless Male appears to be primarily marketed to men –over the age of fo fo fo forty – who have low testosterone levels – or who think they do. According to the products website, Ageless Male is alleged to:
- Helps support healthy testosterone levels already within normal ranges
- In research, helped increase testosterone levels by 50%, still within a safe, physiological range
- May help support healthy hormonal balance in men
- May help reduce the conversion of testosterone into estrogen
- In research, helped reduce the conversion of testosterone to DHT by 16%
While I see the word “research” mentioned a few times on the NewVitality website, the site doesn’t list any studies to support what they say about the product. I think I know why – keep reading…
Ageless Male Ingredients
When I checked newvitality.com, I discovered that Ageless Male has 2 ingredients which together form a proprietary blend called Re-Settin. These ingredients are:
- Saw Palmetto berry extract
- Astaxanthin (a type of carotenoid)
Re-Settin is a catchy word. I guess these ingredients are supposed to “reset” a man’s hormone levels? Regardless, Re-Settin is a marketing word that is holds no scientific meaning. Two capsules of Ageless Male contain 10 calories and 800 mg of the Re-Settin blend of ingredients. How much of each ingredient is in Ageless Male? They don’t tell us.
*** Ingredient Update. On 4/26/12 I was alerted that Ageless Male now has new ingredients. Scroll to the section Ageless Male New Ingredients to see my review of those.
Does Ageless Male Have any Research?
There does appear to be one study on saw palmetto and astaxanthin and testosterone levels. The study was published in 2008 in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition.
The study did not use Ageless Male. Rather researchers were testing another supplement called Mytosterone (also called Alphastat) made by Triarco (triarco.com) which is located in Wayne NJ. Triarco funded this study but the investigation notes that none of the authors had any financial connection to the outcomes of the research.
In this 2 week long investigation, 42 healthy men between the ages of 37 and 70 were divided 2 groups.
- Group 1 (21 men) were given 800 mg of the Mytosterone supplement
- Group 2 (21 men) were given 2000 milligrams of the Mytosterone supplement
At the end of the study, researchers noted that men who got both 800 mg and 2000 mg showed:
- Significant elevations in testosterone and
- Significant reductions in DHT
However, significant reductions in estrogen were only seen in men who received the 2000 mg dose
No significant side effects were noted but again this study lasted only 2 weeks.
If this is the study that Ageless Male is based on, keep in mind that it did not look at sex drive, bone growth, strength or muscle development or most other claims made on the Ageless Male website. These outcomes are probably inferred based on what we know about what testosterone does.
If the results of this study are confirmed, this combination of supplements may prove useful to not only older adults but also bodybuilders and other strength athletes who usually seek ways to naturally boost testosterone levels.
If you try Ageless Male (or Mytosterone aka Alphastat) I recommend getting your testosterone level checked first and then again in a month to see if anything changed. This is wise since Ageless Male can be expensive.
Myosterone may be found in other supplements also but do check the levels in supplements to make sure you are getting at least 800 mg.
This study did raise some red flags with me. For one thing, the researchers say that the men were divided into two groups. They do not say that the men were randomly divided into the groups. I’m mentioning this because if you look at both groups, they have “significantly different” testosterone levels at the start of the study.
- Group 1 (whose average age was 55) testosterone level =21.64 nmol/L
- Group 2 (whose average age was 61) testosterone level =26.26 nmol/L
I’d expect that if the men were randomly assigned to each group, that there would not be a significant difference in testosterone levels between groups.
Also, there was no control group either. Given the differences in testosterone between groups at the start of the study, a control group (who got nothing) would make me feel a little better about how good this study was.
Because of my reservations, I’d like to see a few studies replicate these findings before I Mytosterone it 2 thumbs up. I’d also like to see what happens in a group of men who lift weights while taking Mytosterone.
Another supplement men often ask about is TriVerex so read that review for more info on that product.
Ageless Male New Ingredients
As I mentioned above Ageless Male now has a new list of ingredients so I want to review them here to help you.
1 soft gel of Ageless Male has :
|% daily value|
|Vitamin B 6 (pyridoxine HCL) 4.4 mg||247%|
|Magnesium (magnesium oxide) 16.88 mg||4%|
|Zinc (zinc oxide) 15 mg||100%|
|Testofen (fenugreek extract) 300 mg|
I don’t think healthy people are deficient in vitamin B6, magnesium or zinc. It’s the last ingredient—Testofen—that I want to focus on. It’s worth pointing out that Testofen is also one of the main ingredients in the bodybuilding supplement, Syntheroid.
Testofen is now said to be the main magic ingredient in Ageless Male. As they say on the label of Ageless Male, Testofen is there name for the herb fenugreek.
The name Testofen conjures up ideas that this product is supposed to raise testosterone levels.
As they say on the New Vitality Website, Testofen is a registered trademark of the company Gencor Pacific Inc. In other words, Gencor Pacific created the name “Testofen” as a way to subtly drive home the message that this extract of fenugreek raises testosterone. But does it? Let’s look at the research on fenugreek and testosterone. In case you do your own research on fenugreek, its scientific names are Trigonella foenugraecum and Trigonella foenum-graecum.
In my review, I found 4 studies of fenugreek and testosterone. Two were mouse studies which I will bypass as I don’t think they are relevant. The other two studies used humans, and these studies are kind of interesting.
In a study published in 2011 in the Journal Phytotherapy Research, fenugreek was randomly given to 60 healthy males between the ages of 25 and 52 for 6 weeks. Men either received fenugreek (Testofen) or a placebo and they rated how they felt on a sexual functioning questionnaire (called the DISF-SR) over the course of the 6 week study.
Men who received the fenugreek extract reported greater feelings of sexual arousal, orgasm, libido, well being, energy and muscular strength. There was no change in mood reported.
It is odd that the men in the study reported no change in mood, yet they reported better “well being.” To me, that does not compute. How does well being improve, but not your mood?
Keep in mind that this study did not directly measure strength or energy levels. Rather, the men just reported that they felt stronger and had more energy. This is a drawback of the study.
While these points are interesting, if you read the summary of the study, take note that testosterone did not change.
In the study they say “Serum prolactin and testosterone levels remained within the reference range.” That’s fancy talk for ” Testofen did not raise testosterone levels.” Even scientists tap dance around the facts sometimes—and this is an example of it.
Take note that in this study the men reporting improvements were taking 600 mg of Testofen per day. How much is in Ageless Male—300 mg per gel cap. I called customer service of Ageless Male and they did tell me that the recommended dosage is 2 gel caps per day. This would equal 600 mg.
I believe the main reason fenugreek is in Ageless Male is because fenugreek is an example of a natural 5 alpha reductase inhibitor. The enzyme 5 alpha reductase is turns testosterone into DHT (di-hydro-testosterone). Thus, anything that could inhibit the 5 alpha reductase enzyme might prevent DHT formation and — cause elevated testosterone levels. If it works, then fenugreek might make some sense.
The next fenugreek study is a little bit more interesting…
This fenugreek-testosterone study was published in the International Journal of Sports Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism in 2010. It involved 30 collage age males who were randomly given 500 mg of fenugreek extract —or placebo—for 8 weeks.
The extract of fenugreek used in this study was called grecunin. The word grecunin looks a lot like graecum, which is part of the scientific name for fenugreek (Trigonella foenum-graecum).
Food for thought: I don’t know if fenugreek supplements tell how much grecunin they contain.
The men in this study lifted weights for 4 days per week for the duration of the study. They took the fenugreek extract in the morning and just prior to working out. At end of the study, men who received fenugreek extract, experienced:
- 6.57% increase in testosterone —a significant change
- 12.26 increase in the bio-availability of testosterone —a significant change
- 1.77% decrease in body fat —a significant change
- 26.62% increase in estrogen (estradiol) —a non-significant change
- 6.10 % increase in DH —a non significant change
- No significant change in muscle strength in the upper or lower body
- No significant change in protein synthesis or muscle hypertrophy
The researchers also noted that fenugreek did not completely block the action of 5 alpha reductase. It partially blocked the action of the enzyme—which is interesting— but did not block it completely.
This study was funded by Indus Biotech, a pharmaceutical company based in India. Indus Biotech also provided the fenucreek extract. The study lists no conflicts of interest among the researchers.
This study is interesting. If you decide to try fenucreek remember that the people used in this investigation were collage age males. I don’t know if the same results would occur in men who are, say, in their 50s.
Looking at these two human studies, we have one that seems to show fenugreek raises testosterone while another, which shows it does not raise testosterone levels. As I see it, one big difference between the two studies is in the extract of fenugreek used.
- In the study showing an increase in testosterone, the extract used was called grecunin.
- In the study showing no change in testosterone, Testofen was used.
Ageless Male now contains Testofen.
At this point I don’t know if this is a significant issue or not because even if Testofen does not alter testosterone levels, it did seem to show that men felt better —and performed better sexually. I’d think most men would be fine with this if Testofen really did do this.
I did a check of fenugreek supplements and saw that Vitamin Shoppe sells 610 mg of fenugreek for under $10. That’s a lot less than Ageless Male. The cheap skate in me would say, just try fenugreek and see if that helps.
Just as an experiment, I have purchased the Vitamin Shoppe brand of fenugreek and will be using 610 mg per day for the next 6 weeks to see what happens. If I feel any difference, I will report it here.
Update. 7/3/12. Here is an update of my experiment with Vitamin Shoppe fenugreek 610 mg per day. I was unable to finish 6 weeks of fenugreek because of some surgery, but I did take fenugreek for 4 weeks in a row. What I can say after 4 weeks of daily use is that I did notice a little change in erections (usually in the evening) however it was minimal and I would not call the effect “significant”. In fact, it was such a minimal change that I almost didn’t notice it. Fenugreek was not Viagra, if that puts things in perspective. I’m open to the possibility that taking it for 6 weeks might cause a different effect, so I do hope to try it again in the near future. When I do, I’ll post my results here.
Update August 14 2012. I have completed 6 weeks of taking 610 mg per day of fenugreek (Vitamin shoppe brand). I cant say that I noted any differences from when I used fenugreek for 4 weeks. I wish I could say that 6 weeks made the difference but for me it didn’t.
Who is Jacob Rosenstein MD?
Dr. Rosenstein is featured on the Ageless Male website. He is a neurosurgeon in Texas. He is also affiliated with an anti aging company called Texas Age Management (TexasAgeManagement.com) which is associated with Cenegenics, a medically based anti aging company that uses hormones and supplements to slow the aging process. I found the connection to Cenegenics interesting and speculate that for some people, Ageless Male might be a “gateway supplement” to introduce them to Cenegenics if they wanted to “take things to the next level”.
How much does Ageless Male cost?
A 1 month supply of Ageless Male will cost $39.95. Each bottle has 60 soft-gels and you are supposed to take 2 soft gels per day. There is also a shipping charge of $6.99. They do offer free shipping for orders over $150. That said, if the study above is to be believed you should know in about 1-2 weeks if Ageless Male works because that’s how long it took for Mytosterone to work. You can return Ageless Male within 30 days if you don’t like it.
What do you think?