Ingredient Quality and Quantity
At Awakened Alchemy, we are committed to creating the highest quality nutritional products, based on principles of integrity, effectiveness, and transparency. Our focus on rigorous scientific research-backed evidence-based formulations, use of only the highest quality ingredients, and gold-standard cGMP-certified domestic manufacturing result in our supplements producing beneficial effects that greatly outperform other products.
Integrity: We utilize only the highest quality ingredients, carefully sourced and thoroughly tested for purity, potency, and heavy metal and bacterial contamination. We manufacture our products in New York State in a state-of-the-art CGMP-certified facility. CGMP-certification is the highest certification for the manufacturing, processing, packing, and storage of dietary supplements and evidences compliance with rigorous regulations and requirements.
Herbal Extracts: We use the highest quality herbal extracts in each of our products instead of raw herbs. Our herbal extracts are standardized with respect to the active components of the herbs and consistently of the highest quality. For example, in AWAKEN and AWAKEN GOLD, we use KSM-66, the highest quality herbal extract of Ashwagandha available. KSM-66 is standardized to at least 5% withanolides (the active components of Ashwagandha). Unlike many Ashwagandha extracts and supplements, KSM-66 is made only from Ashwagandha root. Ashwagandha leaves contain Withaferin A, a cytotoxin, and therefore the use of only the root is very important. Nevertheless, most other Ashwagandha extracts and whole herbal supplements contain both the root and leaves.
Use of herbal extracts also allows us to save space in each capsule for other ingredients. We found that many people did not want to take 4-6 capsules each morning or evening. We therefore carefully selected our herbal extracts to maximize their effectiveness and minimize the amount of capsule space they take up, enabling us to deliver powerful formulations in just 2-3 capsules per serving.
Effectiveness: Our supplements are scientifically formulated for optimal benefits and maximum effectiveness. Every ingredient is carefully selected based upon a body of compelling scientific research that evidences its safety, efficacy, and synergy with the other ingredients. We provide links to some of the scientific literature that supports the effectiveness of each ingredient, and the claims we make with respect to each product, on the applicable product pages.
Each ingredient used in our products is in its most bioavailable form and in the form that is the most effective at crossing the blood-brain barrier. These forms of ingredients are generally considerably more expensive and that is a large part of the reason our products are priced higher than many other products that claim similar benefits. The other main reason is that we use full doses of the best quality ingredients available.
Bioavailability: One of the key factors we focus on in selecting the best ingredients for our formulas is bioavailability, which simply means how well that form of an ingredient is absorbed into the body and is made available for use by the body. Different molecular forms of the same ingredient can vary widely in their bioavailability. For example, many lower quality supplements utilize Magnesium Oxide instead of Magnesium Glycinate or Magnesium L-Threonate. Only about 4% of Magnesium Oxide is absorbed into the body, so it is very ineffective at delivering Magnesium for use by the body. DREAM contains Magnesium L-Threonate, which is both highly bioavailable and is the best form of Magnesium for brain health because it easily crosses the blood-brain barrier.
Blood-Brain Barrier: For brain health, there is an additional and very significant complicating factor in ingredient selection --the blood-brain barrier. Only certain forms of certain nutrients can actually enter your brain from your blood. A good example of this is choline. Many lower quality nootropic supplements use Choline Bitartrate to boost choline levels, but Choline Bitartrate does not effectively cross the blood-brain barrier and is therefore very ineffective at boosting levels of Acetylcholine in the brain. In order to boost levels of Acetylcholine in the brain, only two forms of choline are effective: Alpha GPC and CDP Choline (Citicoline). We utilize CDP Choline (Citicoline) in our products for two reasons: (i) CDP Choline (Citicoline) is twice as potent (meaning that 200mg of CDP Choline (Citicoline) has the same effect on Acetylcholine levels in the brain as 400mg of Alpha GPC), which means that it takes up less space in our capsules and allows us to pack more ingredients into each capsule, and (ii) the “C” in CDP Choline stands for Cytidine, which metabolizes into Uridine and boosts levels of Uridine, itself a powerful nootropic, in the blood.
Transparency: We fully disclose each ingredient used in our products and do not use the proprietary blend exception to the FDA disclosure requirements. Our products are gluten, lactose, soy, GMO and animal products free and we use organic rice hull concentrate instead of magnesium stearate.
Proprietary Blend Exception: Many supplement products use something called a “proprietary blend” to disguise the fact that they underdose expensive ingredients. The FDA requires that all ingredients and quantities be disclosed to consumers, with a key exception that a “proprietary blend” can be listed with the total amount of all ingredients contained in that blend and a list of the ingredients in that blend, without specifying the actual amount of each individual ingredient. The idea behind this was to allow manufacturers to create formulations that could not be copied as easily by competitors. In real-world application, however, many manufacturers use this exception to hide the actual amount of expensive ingredients and therefore make their products more profitable. We believe that informed consumers should know exactly what they are ingesting and therefore fully disclose each and every ingredient and use full doses of each.