Mind Lab Pro™ is by far the best nootropic stack I’ve ever used. And I’ve tried a lot of them over the last 10 years. Including ready-made stacks from the local vitamin shop to many of the well-known stacks found online.
Nearly 10 years ago, I was diagnosed with Adult ADD and my doctor put me on Ritalin. It was like the lights suddenly came on in my brain. And for the first time in my life I could concentrate and focus.
Up to then, I took my brain for granted. And hadn’t considered that the health of my brain affected every single aspect of my life.
That point was also the beginning of a journey into how my brain worked. What was wrong, and an earnest search on how to fix it. I’ve read thousands of threads on Reddit, Longecity and nootropic blogs in this search for the ultimate nootropic stack.
- My Nootropic Stack Criteria
- Discovering Mind Lab Pro
- Who Makes Mind Lab Pro?
- Mind Lab Pro Ingredients
- Mind Lab Pro Dosage
- Synergy of Nootropic Ingredients is Key
- Just Say “No” to Proprietary Formulas
- How Mind Lab Pro Works in Real Life
- Mind Lab Pro is Impressive value
- Pros & Cons of Mind Lab Pro
- Nootropics Expert Recommendation
My Nootropic Stack Criteria
As this deep dive into neuroscience took shape, I started to develop a map of sorts on what my options were. Areas that I could fix on my own. And other areas that could be boosted and tweaked to get the most out of this amazingly complex organ in my head.
This is the list of cognitive improvements I eventually came up with:
- increase memory and recall
- eliminate brain fog
- ramp up motivation
- boost personal confidence
- help with concentration
- magnify my ability to learn and retain
- focus easily
- maintain a better mood – tone down depression
- improve vocabulary – words come easily
- reduce stress levels
- have better coordination
- improve sleep
It soon became clear that no prescription drug on earth could help achieve the results I was looking for. A completely optimized brain firing on all cylinders.
So I turned to natural supplements and started experimenting. Through trial and error things started to come together. My memory and recall got better. Confidence levels improved and I was in a better mood. Stress levels went down. And a better night’s sleep was finally within reach.
Anyone who has been down this path of brain optimization knows the expense and work involved. I’ve spent thousands upon thousands of dollars on supplements. Trial and error with different compounds. Buying ready-made stacks that promised a lot. But always fell short in some way.
Eventually I started buying nootropic supplements in bulk powder form and began making my own capsules. Still a costly way boost my brain power but entirely worth the effort and expense. Both in my career and relationships with those I love.
Discovering Mind Lab Pro
But I was always on the lookout for the ideal nootropic stack that could help replace some of the many supplements I was taking. And late last year I finally found it in Mind Lab Pro.
I’ve been using Mind Lab Pro every day for the last 12 months. And haven’t found another premade nootropic stack that comes anywhere close to what this stack can do.
Who Makes Mind Lab Pro?
Mind Lab Pro is a premium nootropic stack developed by the Mind Lab™ at Opti Nutra in the U.K. The company promotes Mind Lab Pro as “the first Universal Nootropic” stack that boosts all aspects of cognition in all types of people.
This nootropic stack can be used by students, athletes, competitors in sports and games, working professionals and even those over 55.
So how can one stack promise so much in just two capsules per day? Let’s dig into the ingredients to see what they do in the brain, and how they work.
(Note that every ingredient in Mind Lab Pro listed here links through to a full review of each nootropic on Nootropics Expert. You’ll get more detail on the history, clinical studies, dosage recommendations, side effects and forms available).
Mind Lab Pro Ingredients
- Bacopa Monnieri 150 mg standardized to 45% active bacosides cuts back learning time, and improves memory including recall.[i]
- Citicoline as Cognizin® 250 mg enhances attention, concentration, memory, logical reasoning, learning and focus.[ii]
- Phosphatidylserine (PS) as Sharp PS® Green 100 mg improves memory and attention, increases cognitive processing speed, and accuracy.[iii]PS is a phospholipid making up 15% of brain cell membranes. Maintaining cellular fluidity, optimizing neuroreceptors and promoting acetylcholine and dopamine.
- Lion’s Mane Mushroom (full-spectrum) 500 mg is effective in improving memory, neuron repair,[iv] liver detox, and regulating blood sugar and cholesterol levels.
- Rhodiola Rosea 50 mg standardized to 3% rosavins and 1% salidrosides improves mental performance under stress, and enhances mood.[v]
- L-Theanine 100 mg as Suntheanine® improves focus[vi], sleep, immune system strength, and blood pressure control.L-Theanine increases alpha brain waves which are associated with relaxation and enhanced creativity.
- N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine (NALT) 175 mg is an amino acid critical for the synthesis of catecholamine neurotransmitters dopamine, epinephrine and norepinephrine in your brain.Boosting these catecholamines helps improve cognition, mood, and memory.
- Pterostilbene 500 mcg is a polyphenol derived from grapes and blueberries. This nootropic helps to fight off and even reverse cognitive decline.[viii]
- Vinpocetine 6 mg is an extract from the periwinkle plant that easily crosses the blood-brain barrier to increase cerebral blood flow.[ix]
- Vitamin B6 2.5 mg supplied as pyridoxal-5-phosphate (P-5-P) is critical for the synthesis of the major neurotransmitters dopamine, GABA, norepinephrine and serotonin. Which influence mood, melatonin, and helps regulate your body clock.[x]
- Vitamin B12 7.5 mcg as methylcobalamin is required to regulate homocysteine levels in your brain and body.
The active bacosides in Bacopa protects brain cells from free radicals which prevents cell damage and death. Bacopa also boosts acetylcholine, GABA and serotonin – all tied to focus, clear memory and better mood. Bacopa even helps boost cerebral circulation.
PS even increases nerve growth factor to help neurogenesis, cell maintenance and repair.
Lion’s Mane is the only mushroom that supports brain health. The active hericenones and erinacines stimulates Nerve Growth Factor which helps neurogenesis, and myelin axon sheath synthesis. Improving neuroplasticity which is involved in memory formation, and keeping cell membranes healthy.
Rhodiola boosts mood by influencing norepinephrine, serotonin and the feel-good opioids like beta-endorphins levels in your brain. It helps neurogenesis, activates the synthesis of ATP, and reduces the inflammatory C-reactive protein in your brain.
It settles excitatory neurotransmitters while promoting calming neurotransmitters like serotonin and GABA. Sharpening attention, alertness and focus that help creative problem solving, learning and studying.
Pterostilbene is a potent antioxidant protecting brain cells from free radical damage particularly under severe stress. Including recovery from stroke by protecting the brain’s blood supply.
Enhancing cerebral circulation with Vinpocetine promotes cellular glucose and oxygen metabolism. Helping boost attention, concentration and memory.
B6 also helps protect your brain from excess homocysteine that can damage blood vessel linings. And B6 helps form myelin which is the protective sheath that surrounds axons in your brain and body.
B12 is also a cofactor in the synthesis of the major neurotransmitters dopamine, GABA, norepinephrine and serotonin. Low levels of Vitamin B12 has been linked to poor mood and cognition leading to cognitive decline at any age.[xi]
Mind Lab Pro Dosage
The amount of each ingredient listed is for Opti Nutra’s recommended 2-capsules per day. You can safely increase your dose to 4-capsules per day. 2 in the morning and 2 early afternoon.
Like every nootropic, it’s always better to start low and see how your body and brain react before increasing your dosage.
Synergy of Nootropic Ingredients is Key
The key to making this nootropic stack work is two-fold:
- the exact amount required for optimal performance from each ingredient
- synergy or how they work together and complement each other for maximum results.
This idea of “synergy” is a big deal when putting together a nootropic stack. While each nootropic on its own could call for a higher dosage, when combined they work together better in the brain at smaller doses. But more on these doses in a minute.
Just Say “No” to Proprietary Formulas
But Opti Nutra chooses to disclose exact amounts on their packaging. So I know exactly what I’m taking. For me, this shows respect for me as a customer. Then I have the option of upping doses of certain nootropics that are unique to my condition and state of health.
For example, I’m Adult ADD and continue to use 20 mg of Ritalin twice a day. Ritalin works by blocking the reuptake and degradation of dopamine in my brain. Making more dopamine available to help my focus and concentration.
The problem for me, and for many with ADD and ADHD as we get older is there’s not enough dopamine in my brain to start with.
The result has been greater efficacy of Ritalin. I’ve never had to increase my dose of Ritalin due to tolerance. And at the end of my day, I don’t experience a stimulant ‘crash’ which is common when using these types of stimulants.
Do I consider this a ‘con’ for Mind Lab Pro? Absolutely not. Because while I need extra dopamine and acetylcholine in my brain, you may not. Unless you’re dealing with something like ADHD.
And I know exactly how much NALT and ALCAR to add to this stack because Opti Nutra tells me how much they are supplying in their stack. There is no guessing.
How Mind Lab Pro Works in Real Life
I love this nootropic stack. Two capsules in the morning with a tablespoon of organic unrefined coconut oil. And it launches my day. In my case with ADD and being hypothyroid, I take another two capsules at noon with coconut oil.
Since starting Mind Lab Pro my productivity has increased. My mood is better. Focusing on several projects is not a problem. Work seems to go faster. And I get more done in less time.
Everything just seems better. And life flows.
Mind Lab Pro is Impressive value
But using Mind Lab Pro has dramatically reduced my nootropic budget. Here’s a breakdown of how much each of these nootropics would cost if purchased individually.
Note: These prices are from Amazon.com here in the USA at the time I write this. They’re usually competitive with other retailers online, and brick & mortar stores. Prices could be different in your part of the world, or when you read this.
Bacopa Monnieri (45% bacosides) 250 mg – 90 capsules $14.99
Citicoline (Cognizin®) 250 mg – 60 capsules $20.38
Phosphatidylserine (PS) (Sharp PS® Green) 100 mg – 120 capsules $48.97
Lion’s Mane Mushroom (full-spectrum) 500 mg – 60 capsules $8.99
Rhodiola Rosea (3% rosavins, 1% salidrosides) 250 mg – 60 capsules $7.86
L-Theanine (Suntheanine®) 100 mg – 60 capsules $11.49
N-Acetyl-L-Tyrosine (NALT) 350 mg – 120 capsules $12.29
Pterostilbene (Pterocarpus) 400 mg – 60 capsules $11.49
Vinpocetine 10 mg – 180 capsules $10.99
Vitamin B6 (P-5-P) 25 mg – 100 capsules $17.95
Vitamin B12 (Methylcobalamin) 1 mg – 60 capsules $18.95
The total of each of these evidence-backed nootropics when purchased individually comes out to $184.35.
Note that dosages are often higher when used individually. And I’ve included supplements packed in vegetarian capsules which are often priced a little higher than regular capsules.
Mind Lab Pro for a 30-day supply if you take the recommended 2 capsules per day is only $65.00 (+ shipping & handling).
You can also choose a 3-month supply (3 boxes) of Mind Lab Pro for $195.00 and get one box free (including free international shipping & handling). That works out to $48.75 per box.
Pros & Cons of Mind Lab Pro
Most competitors (including the nootropics listed above) use HPMC vegetarian capsules which are made from a semi-synthetic polymer.
Now, let’s look at what I think are the pros and cons of this premium nootropic stack.
- Full disclosure on the amount of each ingredient
- High quality branded ingredients (i.e. Cognizin®, Sharp PS®, Suntheanine®)
- Vegan natural Plantcaps®
- Highly bioavailable B-Vitamins (P-5-P and methylcobalamin)
- No additives
- Organic when available, and always free of toxic heavy metals and other contaminates
- Tested prior to encapsulation for allergens, GMOs, microbes, pesticides and herbicides
- Batches are re-tested to confirm potency, purity and activity after encapsulation
- Ships in recyclable cardboard security boxes filled with biodegradable packing peanuts
- Competitively priced
- Vinpocetine dosage is too low. Should be at least 10 – 20 mg.
- Only available on their website (more on this in a minute)
- Citicoline dose is too low if you’re using racetams
And because they fully disclose how much is in each 2-capsule dose, I have a better idea on what I need to add to this stack for my unique issues.
Nootropics Expert Recommendation
Pricing of Mind Lab Pro is very competitive for what you get. Some on reddit.com and other blogs have commented that Opti Nutra only sells this stack from their site. And don’t offer a free trial.
I’ve been in internet marketing for many years and completely understand the hazards of offering a free trial. Especially when you’re selling a high-quality product at the best price you can to stay competitive. It doesn’t make sense to offer free trials when you back it up with a risk-free, “empty bottle”, money-back guarantee.
Opti Nutra has also decided not to offer Mind Lab Pro on Amazon.com because they don’t want this stack to appear alongside low-quality junk products. I get that. Amazon can also be a place where reviews are easily manipulated by jealous competitors.
And for anyone looking to understand the methodology that went into developing this stack, Amazon.com is not the place for extensive product descriptions.
This is the best pre-made nootropic stack I’ve ever tried. And this after nearly 10 years of trying dozens of nootropics. Both individual ingredients, and various stacks by different manufacturers.
It’s certainly not the cheapest nootropic stack on the market. But it’s not unreasonably priced either at only $65 for a month supply. You can’t put this stack together individually for less than twice or even three times what Opti Nutra charges.
And for me, Opti Nutra went the extra mile by going top notch with everything in this stack. Product and packaging quality, brand name ingredients, testing and more testing, organic when they can. Right down to using Plantcaps®. Touches the average person wouldn’t even notice. Now that’s cool.
If you’d like to try Mind Lab Pro, or learn more about this premium stack, please go to their website for more:
[i] Carlo Calabrese, N.D., M.P.H., William L. Gregory, Ph.D., Michael Leo, Ph.D., Dale Kraemer, Ph.D., Kerry Bone, F.N.I.M.H., F.N.H.A.A., and Barry Oken, M.D. “Effects of a Standardized Bacopa monnieri Extract on Cognitive Performance, Anxiety, and Depression in the Elderly: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial”. Journal of Alternative and Complimentary Medicine. 2008 Jul; 14(6): 707-713 (source)
[ii] “Citicoline,” WebMD. www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements. Retrieved November 24, 2015
[iii] “Phosphatidylserine,” WebMD. www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements. Retrieved November 24, 2015
[iv] Wong, K.H., Naidu M., David, RP., Bakar R., Sabaratnam V., "Neuroregenerative potential of lion's mane mushroom, Hericium erinaceus (Bull.: Fr.) Pers. (higher Basidiomycetes), in the treatment of peripheral nerve injury (review)" International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms. 2012;14(5):427-46. (source)
[v] ”Rhodiola,” Life Extension Magazine. www.lifeextension.com. December 2007. Retrieved November 24, 2015.
[vi] “Theanine,” Mitchell, Terri. Life Extension Magazine. www.lifeextension.com. January 2006. Retrieved November 24, 2015.
[viii] “The “Other” Resveratrol,” Johnson, Tiesha D. RN, BSN. Life Extension Magazine. www.lifeextension.com/magazine. Retrieved November 24, 2015.
[ix] “Vinpocetine,” Life Extension Magazine. www.lifeextension.com. February 2006. Retrieved November 24, 2015.
[x] “Vitamin B6,” University of Maryland Medical Center. www.umm.edu. August 5, 2015. Retrieved November 26, 2015.