TESTOSTERONE AND GROWTH HORMONE
Mucuna pruriens is an adaptogenic herb (5) mostly found in hot climates like India and Africa.* While the antioxidant and neuro-protective support it may provide (6, 7) could help promote a healthy body and mind, it is the potential support it provides the endocrine system that make it such a great compound.*
Luteinizing hormone (LH) is a hormone produced by the pituitary gland of the brain. Upon its release it stimulates cells found in the testicles called Leydig cells to synthesize testosterone (8). Mucuna pruriens supports LH release, which may lead to increases in testosterone (9, 10, 11).* Research has suggested that mucuna pruriens contains several alkaloids, but the main constituent responsible for this effect is L-Dopa (12, 13).* L-Dopa is a direct precursor for dopamine (12), which regulates the sex hormones control center in the brain.
Mucuna pruriens has also been suggested to promote levels of growth hormone (GH) in the body (14, 15, 16, 17), including one study that suggested by up to 1250%! (18).*
So not only may mucuna pruriens support testosterone via LH stimulation, it may enhance the machinery required to support GH production.* But that is not all!
Mucuna pruriens has been traditionally used for centuries as an aphrodisiac (11).* This may be due to its support for reduced prolactin (17).* Prolactin is a hormone primarily associated with lactation in women who breastfeed, however in men it is released after orgasm, resulting in loss of erection and a short-term reduction of sexual appetite (23). This is called the refractory period and can last anywhere from seconds in young men, to thirty or more minutes in older men. Dopamine inhibits prolactin release, leading to a reduced refractory period (24). This may help explain why ancient tribes used mucuna pruriens to enhance their sexual experiences.*
Other research has suggested that mucuna pruriens may help support healthy cortisol levels already in the normal range (25).* If allowed to run amuck cortisol can reduce testosterone and luteinizing hormone releasing hormone (LHRH - the hormone that facilitates LH release) levels! (26, 27) The stress from excessive cortisol can also deplete brain neuro-chemicals like dopamine (28), which can spell problems for appetite and sexual health.
As you can tell this herb clearly has a lot of potential for supporting body augmentation.* Something of interest, however, is that studies have been carried out investigating whether there is a difference between taking a mucuna pruriens extract containing L-Dopa, and taking synthetic L-Dopa. Amazingly it appears that the other alkaloids found in mucuna pruriens may make the L-Dopa content more orally bioavailable than taking the synthetic version alone! (29).* This is why Activate Xtreme™ is one of the first formulas to contain both a 95% extract of L-Dopa along with a lower 20% mucuna pruriens extract!
Activate Xtreme™ also contains Bryonia laciniosa, an herb found predominantly in India that is popular in Ayruvedic medicine for its possible role in supporting sexual health.* This has actually been suggested in mammals with an increase in LH, and a supporting effect on testosterone (30).* In addition, bryonia laciniosa may also promote the fructose content of seminal vesicles.* Seminal vesicle fructose content is regulated by androgens and is thus directly correlated with testosterone levels.
This may help explain why bryonia laciniosa has been popular throughout history for promoting sexual invigoration.*
BUT WAIT, THERE'S MORE!
Activate Xtreme™ does not stop at supporting total and free testosterone.*
Estrogen must also be considered.
Estrogen is NOT the vilified creature it has long been made out to be for male bodybuilders. In fact, it has several benefits for muscle growth, but a balance needs to be found. This balance is provided by pZole™, the REVOLUTIONARY anti-estrogen found in Triazole™!*
Conversion from testosterone is the main way that males generate estrogen. Interrupting this process leads to lower estrogen creation. The brain detects this and pumps out more testosterone in order to re-establish "normal" estrogen levels. Using pZole™ may help prevent this conversion and so estrogen levels remain lowered and testosterone levels remain increased!*
CHOLECALCIFEROL (VITAMIN D3)
FOR TOTAL TESTOSTERONE SUPPORT*
Cholecalciferol is also known as vitamin D3. Notice that it is not generic "vitamin D". This distinction is important because vitamin D is not a single compound like you may think. Much like the B vitamins, it is actually a group of several compounds. Medical breakthroughs over the decades have occurred at varying rates and so D3 was grouped with other compounds as a single entity under "vitamin D". New research has shed light on the other entities within the group and their roles in biochemistry have been elucidated. And the research into D3 is quite incredible.
Cholecalciferol is in fact a hormone precursor for the active form of D3 in the body, called calcitriol (1,25-hydroxy vitamin D3).* While some D3 can be obtained from dietary intake such as fish, cheese or fortified milk, the majority of D3 is derived from the sun. Ultraviolet light from the sun reacts in the skin with a type of cholesterol, called 7-hydrocholesterol, to form D3. D3 is then converted to 25-hydroxy vitamin D3 (calcidiol) in the liver, which is then passed to the kidney where it becomes 1,25-hydroxy vitamin D3 (calcitriol).
Most people may not get enough D3, namely because they do not eat a balanced diet, nor do they get outside as much as they should. This may be a legitimate concern for many because D3 plays a huge role in many biological processes.
D3 EXERTS A POSITIVE EFFECT ON ANDROGENS AND ESTROGENS*
D3 levels have been definitively correlated with androgen levels in men. Recent research has suggested that men with higher D3 levels may have more circulating testosterone and less SHBG (31).* With people receiving less sunshine during winter months, especially considering that these are typically "bulking season," this is not a situation you want your internal environment to be in.
With regards to estrogen support, D3 has also suggested to promote anti-estrogenic action (32).* Some research has suggested that D3 may reduce estrogen via two distinct pathways. Firstly by directly suppressing its transcription at the gene level (i.e. reducing how much of it is produced by the body), and secondly by suppressing the cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) pathway.* This latter effect reduces levels of prostaglandins including prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) which is a major stimulator of estrogen creation.* Other research suggests that D3 may help downregulate the expression of estrogen receptor alpha (ERa) thereby reducing the effects of estrogen signalling at the receptor level.*
D3, IGF-1 AND MUSCULAR FORTIFICATION*
D3 may also have more direct effects on muscle growth due to a correlation with IGF-1 (Insulin-like Growth Factor-1) levels (33).* So called because of its structural similarity to insulin, IGF-1 is the means by which GH mediates its anabolic effects in the body. There also exists a more direct way in which D3 effects muscle cells, through something called the Vitamin D Receptor (VDR). Calcitriol binds to this receptor, activating second messenger systems, influencing calcium and phospholipid metabolism.* These messenger systems are crucial for muscle repair and development.
D3 MEANS LESS FAT*
D3 may also have a supportive effect on healthy body composition.* Calcitriol supports calcium uptake in cells which has been associated with a reduction of fat cell content (34, 35).* This is believed to be due, in part, to the effect this calcium influx has on 11beta-Hydroxysteroid Dehydrogenase-1 (11b-HSD1) (36).* 11b-HSD1 is the enzyme that converts the inactive cortisone to the active Cortisol. In fat cells, 11b-HSD1 INCREASES fat cell content. By regulating this enzyme, the increased calcium uptake may help support the loss of fat in the cells that predominantly express 11b-HSD1.* In fact, one study suggests that the effect of adequate D3 intake is so pronounced on body composition that in humans it may help support dieting (37).* In the study subjects with adequate levels of D3 responded better to lower calorie intakes during dieting, leading to more fat loss than those lacking sufficient D3!*
BUT WHAT ABOUT PERFORMANCE?
Glad you asked. In addition to the possible adaptogenic effects of mucuna pruriens, Activate Xtreme™ contains Lepidium meyenii, which is better known as maca.* Also considered an adaptogen, maca is suggested to help support the immune system, promote a neuroprotective effect (38), and help support sexual health.* Maca may have supportive merit in both humans (38-40) and some other mammals (41-44), for sexual desire and mating performance (45-47).* Some more recent research has suggested that maca's possible adaptogenic effects extend further than sexual health, supporting exercise parameters during activity (48).* This makes maca of interest for both performance in the gym and performance between the sheets!*
And just like the extract we include in Triazole™, Activate Xtreme™ utilizes a 20:1 extract of maca. This is a highly concentrated form of maca that we're confident even the most experienced users of maca will not have used before. The superior refinement of the 20:1 extract makes it one of the highest quality forms available.
Through the powerful combinations of the ingredients found in Activate Xtreme™ you can support muscle growth, increases in strength, healthy testosterone levels, estrogen control, and a healthy sex drive.*
SO WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?