“Intense Nootropic Thermogenic” is how GNC describe their Beyond Raw range fat burner – NEURO SHRED.
What does that mean?
Well, in the case of Neuro Shred, it means that the label is crammed with super fun scientific terms and trademark jargon names for pretty regular ingredients, some of which burn fat via metabolism boost and others improve cognitive function in some way to help you feel better and lose weight.
It’s a common enough template in the world of weight management supplements: the physical and the mental aspects of dieting and weight loss being thrown in together.
There’s good reason for it too. Studies have shown that nootropic ingredients can help with both staving off the junk cravings and keeping our chins up when we feel the diet blues.
NEURO SHRED has a label as long as the Dead Sea Scrolls but the formula is really not that extensive. Underneath it all there are 7 pretty standard ingredients, but the technology and release method is where they are hoping to get the bro-science geeks in the wallet muscle.
Something about 2nd Rush Caffeine Technology, which gives constant energy at the optimal times…Mental Intensity (clarity, focus…all the cognitive function stuff) and of course Metabolism and Thermogenesis to speed up the fat burning process.
Let’s see what it can do…or CLICK HERE to go straight to the Best Fat Burners
Benefits as Advertised
The company is fairly keen to maintain the key point that Neuro Shred is absolutely awesome all the time, forever. The first couple of lines of blurb on the website tells us the main points:
- Intense Energy
- Unrivaled Mental Clarity
- Science-based Metabolic Activation
- Proven Ingredients
- Proven Doses
- Clinical Quality
We had to resist the urge to write whatever that means after most of those benefits, but they do at least give a clue as to what they are going with here: Awesomeness!
For us, all the posturing and alpha-language being used in the marketing means very little. It all comes down to the formula and whether the product can do anything for you.
Everyone knows that getting shredded, cut or defined comes from hard work and calorie controlled diets – not little capsules of pure champion juice. If a supplement can help you out with a few hundred calories a day, then it’s worth it.
The truth is in the formula…
Key Ingredients and Formula Potential
The following ingredients and their inclusion weights are in 2 capsules of Neuro Shred. Two caps constitute a serving and there are 30 servings per bottle, so you can take the below quantities as the daily amount.
For clarity, we have simplified the ingredient descriptions that are on the label, so we can save ourselves a few days of writing ;-)…just kidding (but really!):
17mg – Vitamin C
400mg – Citrus Sinensis
250mg – 2nd Rush Caffeine (of which 200mg is Caffeine Anhydrous and 50mg is Targeted Release Caffeine)
100mg – NeuroFactor (dried whole Coffee fruit extract)
100mg – Capsimax (capsaicin/capsicum)
50mg – Mustard Essential Oil (called ActivAIT)
10mg – Black Pepper Extract
Citrus Sinensis is an extract of the ‘sweet orange’ group as opposed to the usual citrus aurantium – or – ‘bitter orange’ which has become the go-to inclusion of many fat burners.
There isn’t much to say about the sweet variety, in terms of fat burning at least.
There is much more scientific research needed before it garners any where near the attention of its bitter sibling.
Caffeine comes next on the recipe, in various forms and locked in different, trademarked, release compounds. The overall effect they seem to be going for is an immediate energy release, combined with some time-release to keep the energy life more stable over time.
Capsimax is the benchmark of all pepper extracts – capsaicin/capsicum is one of the most proven fat burners. It brings the heat to the fat cells without the discomfort of hot peppers.
Mustard Essential Oil is a little unknown relatively speaking in the context of fat loss products, but you should note that it is a different thing entirely to mustard, and should be handled with care. There are some sources which suggest it can raise internal body temperature which may contribute to increased fat burning.
Black Pepper is used in small quantities in fat burners to increase the bio-availability / absorption of the other ingredients in the blend.
The formula, for all the claims the company makes about it, is not that special. Certainly they are trying to add lots of ingenuity with special versions of all these ingredients, but the result is not hugely impressive.
For people who have regained their sensitivity to caffeine (as one should before hoping to lose weight with a caffeine-based supplement) the feeling of renewed focus and a decent energy lift will be there. Fat burning is something that can only be measured over time, and in conjunction with a healthy diet and exercise regime.
There are better products available for that!
Side Effects and Health Considerations
The ingredients are unlikely to cause any negative side effects at these quantities. However, people with a medical condition, those taking prescription medication or pregnant/breastfeeding women should avoid it.
If you are particularly sensitive to caffeine then you should take a half daily serving to start with. The 2 capsule serving allows for it, so you can take only one until you can assess your tolerance level.
Conclusion and Recommendations
Neuro Shred was a little disappointing for us. It gets some decent customer comments (on the GNC website) along with the usual negative ones.
The problem is that 90% of people using fat burners are expecting them to do a lot for them without much input from them.
While it’s true that fat burners should essentially increase calorie burn while you are sedentary, if you still eat above the calorie expenditure then you will not notice much difference.
The key with any supplement is that it is a supplement to other, more important aspects of a healthy lifestyle, such as exercise and diet.
As for fat burners that are the best supplement for the job, follow the link below…