Androzene Critical Review of Research

Androzene, is a male enhancement supplement you may have seen on TV that’s said to be “guaranteed to crank up your sex drive by giving you faster, bigger, harder erections.” Powerful words, but does it really work? And, if it does work, what are the ingredients in this supplement that might be responsible for its effects? After watching the TV infomercial I was intrigued enough to want to review Androzene. I admit, the product did not contain what I originally though. I also uncovered other things that people might be interested in should they chose to try Androzene.

Androzene research

I searched the Androzene website (TryAndrozene.com) for proof that the product

Androzene

Adapted from TryAndrozene.com

worked but I saw no published peer reviewed studies on Androzene itself. This says to me that Androzene ―itself ―appears to have no published peer reviewed proof that it works.

 

Androzene ingredients

According to the product’s website (TryAdrozene.com) a bottle of Androzene has 90 capsules. A serving size is 3 capsules and contains these ingredients

Amount% DV
Niacin33 mg165 %
Calcium420 mg42%
Zinc sulfate60 mg400%
Androzene Propriety Blend360mgN/A
Guarana seed extract 22% caffeine?
Yohimbine15 mg
Taurine?
Xanthoparmelia Scabrosa extract (lichen)?
Eleuthero  root extract (aria parts)?
Nettle root extract?
Saw palmetto berry extract (4:1)?
Tribulis terrestris (arial parts)?

NA=not applicable

%DV = percent daily value

? = unknown amount

 

Some of these ingredients are quite different from previous male performance supplements I’ve looked such as Cyvita, Triverex and Ageless Male.

That said, I believe I know what the active ingredient in Androzene is but, as a double check, let’s look at the relevant research on each of the ingredients separately.

Niacin. Niacin is a vasodilator  (it expands blood vessels) and is the reason why people often feel flushed after taking niacin supplements. As a vasodilator, in theory it makes sense ―at least on the surface ―why this vitamin would be in an erection supplement. In other words, if it helped open up blood vessels “down stairs” then it might help erections.  With this in mind, I searched the National Library of Medicine for :

  • “niacin erectile dysfunction”

and found a 12 week long study published in 2011 titled Effect of niacin on erectile function in men suffering erectile dysfunction and dyslipidemia. In this investigation, researchers noted that 1500 mg per day of niacin improved erections in men with high cholesterol levels and moderate  to severe erectile dysfunction (ED).

Oddly, researchers also noted that niacin had no effect in men who had mild to moderate ED. This is weird because, I’d think if niacin improved moderate ED, that it should also help milder cases. But it didn’t. I think this may be a problem with the study.

Whether niacin helped or not, I feel is irrelevant because  this study used 1500 mg of niacin. Androzene contains only 33 mg.  Niacin can be a tricky vitamin because high doses can be damage the liver so I can appreciate why Androzene doesn’t contain that much niacin. The RDA for niacin is 16 mg per day for adult men.

I think men should speak to their doctor before using high dose niacin supplements.

Calcium. I searched the National Library of Medicine for:

  • Calcium erectile dysfunction
  • Calcium erections

I saw no studies that directly link dietary calcium to improved erections.

There is some research on calcium helping blood pressure and maybe helping reduce cholesterol levels a little bit. Since these factors can play a role in erectile dysfunction, is it possible this is the reason Androzene contains calcium? It’s difficult to say.

 

Zinc. I searched the national library of medicine for:

  • Zinc erections
  • Zinc erectile dysfunction

While I found no human studies that appear to have looked at zinc and erections, there is some evidence zinc may play a role in helping testosterone levels in men who have “low T”.

For example, in this review of studies, titled  Treatment options for sexual dysfunction in patients with chronic kidney disease: a systematic review of randomized controlled trials, oral zinc was shown to raise testosterone in men with ED.

Tip. This does not necessarily mean zinc supplements raise testosterone in men who have normal testosterone levels.

In this 1996 study titled Zinc status and serum testosterone levels of healthy adults, zinc raised testosterone in older, zinc-deficient men. Interestingly , too much zinc appears to reduce the swimming ability of sperm.

Deficiency in zinc is rare in the US with the RDA being only 13 mg per day. Androzene provides 60 mg of zinc.

 

Guarana. The guarana seed extract in Androzene is 22% caffeine. I searched the National Library for :

  • Guarana erections

And found a rat study from 2008 noting that caffeine improved erections in diabetic rats. I’m not aware of any human research on caffeine helping erections.

 

Yohimbine. Yohimbine is a chemical in the herb, yohimbe. It’s scientific name is Pausinystalia yohimbe.  If you look closely at the Androzene label, you’ll see that 3 capsules of Androzene provide 15 mg of yohimbine.  Yohimbine is the only ingredient in the Androzene proprietary blend to have an actual amount listed next to it.

I believe there is a reason for this.

I believe yohimbine is the main active ingredient in Androzene. Here’s why. I searched the National Library of Medicine for:

  • Yohimbine erectile dysfunction
  • Yohimbie erectile dysfunction

I found several studies, noting that yohimbe might help erections in men with erectile dysfunction. For example:

In a 2002 study titled Yohimbine treatment of organic erectile dysfunction in a dose-escalation trial, 18 men, age 60 years of age were given between 16.2 and 32.4 mg of yohimbie per day for 4-6 weeks. After the study, men who received yohimbie reported better erections. Yohimbie had no effect on testosterone levels. Interestingly, no side effects were reported in this small study. This study had no placebo group.

 

A 1996 review of research titled Effectiveness of yohimbine in the treatment of erectile disorder: four meta-analytic integrations, noted that, while some of the research had issues with how it was conducted, yohimbe appeared better than placebo at improving erections.

 

In a 1998 review of the research titled Yohimbine for erectile dysfunction: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized clinical trials, researchers noted that while yohimbe appeared to improve erections, the risk appeared to outweigh the benefits (see the side effects section below).

In a 2011 review of research titled Erectile Dysfunction, researchers noted that while yohimbe appeared more effective than placebo, they stated that the quality of the evidence was weak. In other words, many of the studies had problems with the way they were conducted.  Also, it should be noted that not all studies find yohimbe works.

For example, in this 1997 study titled, Is high-dose yohimbine hydrochloride effective in the treatment of mixed-type impotence? A prospective, randomized, controlled double-blind crossover study, researchers noted that yohimbe (36 mg/day) was no better than a placebo at helping ED.

 

That said, if we leave out the issue of problems with the way many of the studies were conducted, there appears to be more evidence for yohimbe than any other ingredient in Androzene. That’s not saying much since the evidence is far from perfect, but it’s still more studies overall than the other ingredients in Androzene.

This is why I feel it’s the active ingredient.

 

Taurine.  I searched the National Library of Medicine for :

  • Taurine erections
  • Taurine testosterone

I found this 2013 study titled Taurine enhances the sexual response and mating ability in aged male rats noting that taurine increased both nitric oxide and testosterone in older rats.

All the studies I saw with respect to taurine and erections/testosterone involved lab rats. As such, while it’s intriguing, I prefer to wait for human research.

 

Xanthoparmelia Scabrosa.  I searched the National Library of Medicine for:

  • Xanthoparmelia Scabrosa testosterone
  • Xanthoparmelia Scabrosa erections

I found no published studies of this ingredient and erections.

In this 2004 write up appearing on the website NewHope360, compounds formed from . The reason is that these compounds can inhibit a variety of enzymes.Xanthoparmelia Scabrosa are not safe

While inhibition of some enzymes may actually have positive benefits (i.e. inhibiting some types of cancers), knocking out other enzymes might cause the death of normal, healthy cells. This brief review from WebMd.com also mentions this possibility. When I searched for more info on this issue, it appears that much of the concern about Xanthoparmelia Scabrosa stems from this 2003 study noting its toxic effects on cells.

There are online rumors that Xanthoparmelia Scabrosa might be an inhibitor of an enzyme called phosphodiesterase (PDE). This is the type of enzyme that is inhibited by Viagra and other similar drugs. I wonder if this might be the reason Xanthoparmelia Scabrosa is in Androzene?

So, I searched the National Library of Medicine for :

  • Xanthoparmelia Scabrosa phosphodiesterase
  • Lichen phosphodiesterase

No relevant studies showed up.

Granted, there are many types of PDE such as PDE 5, PDE 6 and so on, but since I can find no human research for Xanthoparmelia Scabrosa improving erections ― and given the unknowns surrounding its potential toxic side effects ― I wonder why it is in this supplement?

Eleuthero root. This is another name for Siberian Ginseng. It’s scientific name is Eleutherococcus senticosus. I was unable to find any research that Siberian ginseng helps erections in men. Siberian ginseng sometimes shows up in exercise supplements but the evidence that it helps is mixed.  For example,

In this small study published in 2010 titled The effect of eight weeks of supplementation with Eleutherococcus senticosus on endurance capacity and metabolism in human, Siberian ginseng was noted to improve exercise ability, but the study used 800 mg of the herb. That’s a lot more than is in Androzene.

Conversely, in this 2005 study titled, Assessment of the effects of eleutherococcus senticosus on endurance performance,  Siberian ginseng did not help exercise even when it was used at 1000-1200 mg per day. Again, this is a lot more than is in Androzene.

Since sex is a form of physical activity, this may be why the herb is in Androzene. But because of the discrepancies with Siberian ginseng, I’m not sure if it adds anything to the product.

Nettle root. It’s scientific name is Urtica dioica and it’s also sometimes called stinging nettle root. I searched the National Library of Medicine for :

  • Nettle root testosterone
  • Nettle root erections

I found no studies on this herb as it relates to improving sex . In a 2005 study titled Urtica dioica for treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia: a prospective, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover study, 6 months of stinging nettle root did not raise testosterone levels (or PSA levels) in men with enlarged prostates.

I have seen nettle root in other supplements marketed to men with enlarged prostates.  For more on nettle root, see my review of Prosvent, a prostate supplement.

 

Saw palmetto (scientific name Serenoa repens) is another herb I often see in supplements for the prostate.  Interestingly, I did find this 2013 study noting that saw palmetto improved erections in rabbits and rats by inhibiting the enzyme PDE 5 (this is the enzyme Viagra inhibits too).  Could this be why the herb is in Androzene? Maybe, but I saw no studies in humans showing that saw palmetto helps erections in men.

For more info on saw palmetto see my reviews on Ageless Male and Prosvent.

Tribulus terrestris has, for a long time, been touted as a testosterone booster, despite any good proof it really works. Since tribulus is the last ingredient listed, I don’t think Androzene has much of it. For more info, see my review of Tribulus terrestris and testosterone research. I also have a chapter on Tribulus in my book about supplements as well.

 Ingredients with the most evidence

Looking at all the ingredients in Androzene and considering only the human research I was able to locate, I believe yohimbine is the only ingredient in the product with relevant human research regarding improvement of erections.

This is not to say that yohimbine (also called yohimbie) is a slam dunk in terms of effectiveness because not all the research shows it works. Rather, it is because I see more human ―”it might work” ―research for yohimbe than any other ingredient in Androzene. Yohimbe is a standalone supplement such as this brand which has several positive comments from people. That said, PLEASE do read the side effects below, before experimenting with any yohimbe supplement.

 

Who makes Androzene?

On the Terms and Conditions page of the product website, it’s said that Androzene is a product of a company called Health Club Diet, LLC. On the website, Trademarkia.com, Health Club Diet LLC is even listed as the owner of the AndroPhase trademark (more about that below). Trademarkia.com also lists this address for Health Club Diet LLC: 100 CUMMINGS CTR STE 354B, BEVERLY, MA 01915-6514.

Here’s the thing. This is the same address as Blue Vase Marketing (bluevasellc.com), a company that does Direct Response Television Marketing. If you saw the Androzene TV infomercial, you saw Michael Alden as the main interview person. Mr. Alden is the CEO of Blue Vase Marketing. His personal website is Michael-Alden.com.

If you read my review on the arthritis supplement, Arthra D, you will also see Blue Vase Marketing mentioned here as well.

The Better Business Bureau gives Androzene a rating of B as of 11/2/13. Interestingly the BBB list another address for Androzene: 54 W Dane St Ste M1, Beverly, MA 01915.  See the BBB file for more information.

 

Androzene vs. AndroPhase

The Androzene website has a page called AndroPhase. AndroPhase is said to be a testosterone booster and sex supplement and it appears to be a totally different supplement than Androzene and the price is different too. The problem, is that I can’t find what the ingredients are in AndroPhase. Theyare not listed on the products website. If anyone finds the ingredients in AndroPhase, let me know and I will gladly update this part of the review.

 

Who is John Abdo?

John Abdo is the fitness expert interviewed during the Androzene TV infomercial. His website, JohnAbdo.com, says he is the chief spokesperson for Androzene.  The website Trademarkia.com, lists Mr. Abdo as the owner of the trademark for Androzene.

His website also lists that he has been involved with several fitness products previously including The AB-DOer abdominal machine.

As an aside, I noticed that Mr Abdo lists on his website a personal training certification from the International Sports Science Association (ISSA). I noticed that the certification was expired in 2011. So I contacted the ISSA who told me that Mr. Abdo is no longer certified by them.

 

Who is Dr J.J .Meier D.D?

Dr Meier is also featured in the Androzene TV infomercial. She is listed as the cofounder of the Stragen Group (strategengroup.com) which helps businesses in the fields of entertainment, personal care, health and nutrition. The strategengroup.com website also noted that the company has a division that “develops and represents lines for DRTV” (Direct Response Television Marketing), which, to me, sounds somewhat similar to that of Blue Vase Marketing (see “who makes Androzene” above). The Strategengroup.com website notes that Dr. Meier has a Doctorate in Holistic Theology and is the author of the book God in the Mirror: Reflections on the Physiology of Faith.

 

How much does Androzene cost?

When I checked the product website, 1 bottle of Androzene was 124.99 (plus $9.99 shipping /handeling). The price may be different when you check their website. Here is Androzene on Amazon for those who want to compare prices and check product reviews.

How to return Androzene?

According to the Terms page of TryAndrozene.com, I noticed  if people buy Androzene from the product website, that they have a 30 day money back guarantee if a 30 day supply is purchased and a 90 day guarantee if a 90 day supply of Androzene is purchased. The guarantee starts on the day Androzene is delivered (that’s also good).

People can return both open and unopened bottles. Even empty bottles can be returned for a refund (that’s really good).

To return Androzene people have to call customer service (800 704-4055 ) and obtain a Return Authorization number (RA number). The RA number should be written on the outside of the package. Returns must also include a copy of the sales invoice and a reason why Androzene is being returned. All returns have a $10 restocking fee. Those returning products must also pay shipping and handling charges.

 

The autoship program

Purchasing Androzene via the Androzene website may enroll people in an auto ship program (they call it a Monthly Replenishment Program) where Androzene would be shipped to people automatically at regular intervals. To cancel the autoship program, call (800) 895-5939. When I checked product website, I noticed that the autoship button was already checked. Take note of that if you order via the website and don’t want to be enrolled in this program.

Here is Androzene on Amazon for those who want to compare prices.

 

Androzene side effects?

On the FAQ page of TryAndrozene.com they say ” Androzene is all natural and there have been no reports of any side effects.” While this is encouraging, just because no side effects have been reported do not mean none exist.  What follows is a short list of things to consider based on some of its ingredients. This list is not complete.

Yohimbe can raise blood pressure and heart rate. People with ANY medical issues need to see their doctor before taking yohimbe.

Just a short list of health problems that may be made worse by yohimbe include

Heart diseaseSchizophreniaProstate problems
High blood pressuredepressionAnxiety /stress issues
Kidney problemsLiver problemsChest pain

 

Men need to understand that erection problems are not just about testosterone levels. Erectile dysfunction can be a sign of heart disease too. I don’t think this message gets out to men as much as it should. As such, using a product like yohimbe may be a problem for some men.

Even “healthy people” who take too much yohimbe may experience problems. For example, ingestion of 5 grams of yohimbie was associated with neurotoxicity in a 37 year old bodybuilder who took 5 grams of yohimbe.  This is much more than is in Androzene.

A 1993 case report indicated an association between yohimbie and skin problems, kidney failure and a lupus -like syndrome in a 42 year old man.

In a 2009 case report, a yohimbe supplement was associated with an erection lasting 20 hours that required surgery to correct. This is the side effect eluded to during most TV commercials for erection drugs like Viagra (i.e. seek medical attention for erections lasting more than 4 hours…).

While some might look at this case report and think “wow yohimbe  really works!”, I wonder was it yohimbe or something else in the supplement that caused this reaction? For more info, see my review on male enhancement supplements that contain Viagra.

 

Some evidence hints that Siberian ginseng might affect various enzymes involved with how medications are metabolized in the body. This might make medications more powerful or less powerful, either of which might cause problems.

The write ups on Xanthoparmelia Scabrosa possibly being not safe for healthy cells, worries me. That, plus the lack of evidence for it helping erections just makes me wish they would remove this ingredient from Androzene. For more information see:

 

Does Androzene work?

I believe that, because the product contains yohimbine, that Androzene might work for some men.  Yohimbe has more human evidence than any other ingredient in Androzene. That said, my other opinion is that Androzene is basically an expensive yohimbe supplement.  Here is Androzene on Amazon and here is yohimbie on Amazon to compare prices. Of course, it’s possible that the combination of ingredients in Androzene might make it more powerful or work better than Yohimbe alone, but without any published proof, we have no way of knowing either way.

Yohimbine is not without cautions and is not an herb I would recommend. Yohimbie can raise heart rate and blood pressure and there are case reports of even healthy people having problems with it.  Since 3 capsules of Androzene are listed to contain 15 mg of yohimbine, for those try the product, I feel starting with 1 pill for at least the first week might cut back on side effects, if any exist. Most of all, I believe men who have erection problems need to talk to their doctor about why it is occurring before experimenting with supplements. Erection problems are not just about testosterone levels. It could be a sign of heart disease.

 What do you think?

Comments

  1. r says

    Once again, a good, common sense review. Given that many supplements you review play “hide the ball” with their ingredients, or the amount of them, you do an excellent job bringing logic to the table.

    • Joe says

      R, appreciate you saying that! There was a lot more to Androzene than I thought when I originally decided to review it.

      • ES says

        Joe great review. have you heard from anyone using this product as to its effectiveness? (good or bad) Since you review such products have you come across any that actually works?

        • Joe says

          ES, thanks I appreciate that! So far I have not met anyone who has tried Androzene or who compared it to yohimbe, what I think is its active ingredient. I’ve looked at a few of these types of products and as a rule, I tend to see many of the same ingredients in different products such as arginine, fenugreek, picnogenol, tribulus and yohimbe. I’m personally skeptical of a lot of these types of products/ingredients because most dont have much research on them but the good news is if you try a product, you should know pretty fast if its working or not.

  2. Logan Waters says

    Thanks for the review and investigation. Great job.

    I found this site after watching some of Abdo’s infomercial. The ad intrigued me, because Abdo sounds uneducated, mispronouncing some scientific terms, and sounding in general, like a snake-oil salesman.

    His own website and his LinkedIn profile are enlightening, as they mentions his education – not at all. Yep, that’s what I want to do – swallow supplements formulated by a weightlifter with no science background.

    J.J .Meier calling herself a “doctor” speaks for itself.

    The FDA and FCC should be doing more to crack down on these modern purveyors of snake oil.

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