Forebrain Review Summary
Force Factor FOREBRAIN is a complete letdown. We strongly advise you to use a different brain supplement. Proprietary blends are always a complete rip-off, and FOREBRAIN is no exception. Force Factor FOREBRAIN is not a top-quality nootropic; not even close. You can get a lot more value for your dollars elsewhere.
Force Factor FOREBRAIN Review: What does this nootropic do?
Force Factor FOREBRAIN is – without question – one of the most talked-about brain supplement in the world today. Force Factor are a massive name in the supplement industry; their range of specialist sports supplements is extremely popular in the US, Australia, Canada, and Europe. But they don’t just make sports supplements – they have a line of general performance enhancers, including the supposed cognitive enhancer FOREBRAIN.
So what does Force Factor FOREBRAIN do exactly?
According to the official website, Force Factor FOREBRAIN is a “potent nootropic formula” which helps:
- Enhance sharpness and clarity
- Improve memory
- Boost cognitive performance
These are very general claims. Force Factor FOREBRAIN seems to be designed to enhance overall mental function; it is a general nootropic for total brain optimization.
So does Force Factor FOREBRAIN really work? What can it actually do? Will Force Factor FOREBRAIN cause side effects? How does it compare to the best cognitive enhancers around right now? Read our full Force Factor FOREBRAIN review to find out!
Fore Factor FOREBRAIN Ingredients
Let’s jump straight into the important stuff. Here is the Force Factor Forebrain ingredients list as it appears on the bottle:
We’ll now do a quick run through of the ingredients in Force factor Forebrain, explaining what each one does – or doesn’t do – for your mental performance. Please post any questions in the comments at the bottom of this page.
Bacopa monnieri – Dose unknown (50% bacoside extract)
Bacopa monnieri is the benchmark for memory enhancers in our opinion. It is the most reliable way to improve memory function in a deep, meaningful way. Supplementation with Bacopa monnieri has produced drastic improvements in memory function in as little as 6-12 weeks. Clinical trials have found that it has the biggest impact in people with mild cognitive impairment (specifically age-related).
Safe, well tolerated, and powerful, Bacopa monnieri is one of our most highly rated nootropics. A 50% bacoside extract is very powerful – most nootropics use a 20% extract. However, you still need to use about 150mg at this potency to see good results.
Grape Extract – Dose unknown (standardized for anthocyanins – potency unknown)
Grape Extract has never been proven to affect cognitive function. It has been the subject of several clinical trials looking specifically at its effects on mental performance. We’ve read dozens of these papers and the evidence seems pretty clear to us – grape extract does not improve mental performance.
The grape extract used in Force Factor Forebrain has been standardized for anthocyanins. These are powerful antioxidants which can protect the brain from oxidative damage. But we aren’t told how much of the extract is anthocyanins – it could be standardized to provide 0.01% anthocyanins by weight for all we know.
Caffeine – Dose unknown (zumXR extended release)
Caffeine doesn’t need much of an explanation. It is an incredibly powerful natural stimulant. Caffeine rapidly increases energy levels, reduces the perception of fatigue (mental and physical), increases motivation, and enhances focus. Obviously, large doses of caffeine pose significant health risks. Nor is it appropriate for long-term, frequent supplementation. But with a total blend size of 65mg, this isn’t a big concern with Force Factor Forebrain.
Vincamine – Dose unknown (As Thinkamine)
Thinkamine is basically a standardized, branded form of Vinpocetine. It is billed as an extremely pure, highly concentrated alternative to standard vinpocetine. Vinpocetine is itself a semi-synthetic form of the naturally-occurring compound vincamine. It is a superb nootropic with multiple mechanisms of action; it increases cerebral blood flow, reduces inflammation, and protects the brain from oxidative damage. A true all-round nootropic.
Toothed Clubmoss – Dose unknown (Huperzine A content unknown)
Toothed Clubmoss – also known as Huperzia Serrata – is a plant native to parts of Asia. It is the only natural source of Huperzine A; a widely used nootropic. Huperzine A is an extremely powerful cognitive enhancer. It inhibits the enzyme acetylcholinesterase; the enzyme responsible for destroying acetylcholine as it passes between synapses. Supplementing with Huperzine A cases a build-up of acetylcholine, which improves practically every facet of brain function.
The only problem with Huperzine A is that it must be cycled. Otherwise, acetylcholine levels just keep increasing. Above a certain level, acetylcholine can cause serious problems (we’ll discuss these in the side effects section).
Our take on the Force Factor FOREBRAIN formula
Obviously the biggest problem with Force Factor FOREBRAIN is the fact that it uses proprietary blends. We have absolutely no time for proprietary blends. Most nootropics today don’t bother hiding their serving sizes, so nobody should. There’s just no good reason for keeping your doses a secret.
We think the only reason why a manufacturer would do this is to stop the most naïve customers from realizing how badly they’re being ripped off.
For example, the MemorySafe blend is 550mg. It contains Bacopa monnieri (a good nootropic) and Grape Extract (unproven junk). We have no way of knowing how much of the blend is Bacopa monnieri and how much is grape extract.
It could be that Force Factor used 540mg of useless but cheap Grape Extract and 10mg of powerful but expensive Bacopa monnieri. This would keep costs down without having to admit to low doses.
Some customers will see the 550mg blend and imagine that it is split equally between the ingredients. But if the doses were good, we think Force Factor would want to shout about it – you know, like most supplement manufacturers do when their products are potent!
The use of Toothed Clubmoss is a big issue too. In its whole plant form, Huperzia Serrata has a very low Huperzine A content – usually 0.1%. So you need to use a lot of whole plant powder to get enough Huperzine A. But the ThinkUp Advanced blend is just 65mg in size.
That is nowhere near enough raw material to accommodate for caffeine, vinpocetine, and Huperzia Serrata.
We strongly advise you to avoid proprietary blends in any form. We don’t care what the ingredients are, what the blend size is, or anything else.
There’s no good reason to keep your ingredient doses from customers. So when manufacturers use them, we think they must be trying to hide low doses, useless ‘filler’ ingredient stuffing, or dangerous stimulant servings.
The Force Factor Forebrain formula is full of problems relating to doses, ingredient quality, and the fact that the serving sizes are unknown.
This is not a great nootropic in our opinion.
Side Effects: Is Force Factor FOREBRAIN safe?
There are some rather serious health and safety concerns with Force Factor Forebrain. This is a big shame; the major selling point of natural nootropics is that they don’t have the same associated health risks as synthetic drugs.
The main issue with Force Factor Forebrain is uncertainty. The fact that the ingredient servings are all hidden by a proprietary blend makes judging the side effect risks very difficult. Health and safety risks are always linked to dosages.
We do not want uncertainty when trying to evaluate the dangers associated with a nootropic supplement.
We think it is possible that Force Factor Forebrain will cause side effects in a significant number of users.
We have no idea how much caffeine we get from Forebrain. The maximum dose is ~64mg. This is about the same amount of caffeine as a small Americano. Not an awful lot of caffeine for some, but enough to have a physiological effect.
You need to make sure you’re not doubling up on caffeine from other supplements, tea, and coffee. If your intake is already high, an extra 65mg can have a big impact.
We have no clue how much Huperzine A Force Factor included here. This is a much more serious concern; large doses of Huperzine A will cause side effects a lot faster than smaller doses. Again, we just don’t know how much Huperzine A we’re dealing with here.
We recommend taking a 7 day break after 2 weeks of using Huperzine A. After 2-3 cycles, take a prolonged break to allow your acetylcholine levels to return to normal.
In Conclusion – Is Force Factor FOREBRAIN any good?
Is Force Factor FOREBRAIN a good nootropic supplement?
In our opinion, the answer is a clear and resounding “no”. The Force Factor FOREBRAIN formula is split up into two proprietary blends. There is no excuse for proprietary blends; no good, valid reason for a manufacturer to use one.
We believe that proprietary blends are only ever used to disguise a poor formula. Throwing all the ingredients together and listing a single serving size will confuse more naïve customers. They’ll assume the ingredients share the blend equally, or that the best ingredient have the lion’s share.
This is never the case – if it was, then Force Factor would be bragging about it!
If a lot of the FOREBRAIN MemorySafe blend was 50% Bacopa extract, we guarantee that the manufacturer would be using that as a major selling point.
We think it’s likely that Force Factor have dosed the best ingredients low and bulked out the formula with weak, cheap, ineffective substances like Grape Extract and Toothed Clubmoss (rather than Huperzine A itself).
There is no way that 65mg is enough for caffeine, Huperzia Serrata (low in Huperzine A) and Vincamine. Caffeine alone needs to be dosed above 50mg for it to have any real effect. Toothed Clubmoss is usually less than 0.1% Huperzine A, so you need to dose it at about 100mg to get 100mcg.
Force Factor FOREBRAIN is a weak nootropic.
There actually isn’t a circumstance where we would recommend Force Factor FOREBRAIN; it is a poor choice regardless of your goals.
If you want to get good value for money, use a nootropic that tells you each ingredient’s serving size.
If you’re looking for total brain optimization, then use a nootropic with an open, transparent formula, scientifically-backed ingredients, and good doses. Unfortunately, Force Factor FOREBRAIN is not that supplement.
Brian Johnson is current Editor of Vagarights.com and a long-time writer for VAGA. A former psychologist, Brian is passionate about improving mental health and finding ways to stave off cognitive decline. He is an expert on nootropics, cognitive enhancement and biohacking more broadly. You can see his work on Google scholar.