Legion is a company that puts education first. They are known for their educational blogs that provide helpful insight into the fitness world. Legion takes pride in transparency and scientific evidence when formulating their products.
Legion was founded by bestselling health and fitness author Mike Matthews to bring something new to the supplement world. Matt sought to put the consumer first, offering basic yet effective formulas that don’t intend to deceive the customer. That’s what earned Legion a spot among the top in today’s exceedingly competitive sports nutrition industry.
Almost everyone experiences that 2:00 PM afternoon crash that leaves them struggling to make it through the rest of the workday. Keeping your eyes on your watch, waiting for the clock to hit 5:00 PM. Quitting time. Whether you are a coffee drinker, or an energy drink fanatic, every one of you have found your way of getting past that afternoon crash. What if we told you there was a product that not only could eliminate the afternoon crash, but it could actually make your afternoons more productive than your mornings? Welcome to the world of nootropics.
Legion’s nootropic offers several high-quality natural ingredients that work to increase mental efficiency. Many people have termed these ingredients “brain boosters” for the increase in focus, memory and mental speed they provide. Let’s take a look at what Legion Athletics’ Nootropic product offers, and maybe even a peek at some of the science supporting the ingredients.
Ascend for Legion Athletics offers several high-quality natural ingredients that work to increase mental efficiency. Many people have termed these ingredients “brain boosters” for the increase in focus, memory and mental speed they provide. Let’s take a look at what Legion Athletics’ Nootropic product offers, and maybe even a peek at some of the science supporting the ingredients.
Legion chose to use agmatine sulfate for the wide range of cognitive benefits it offers. Agmatine is a form of the amino acid L-Arginine that can be useful for memory improvement and reasoning. You may have heard of this ingredient before, as it is commonly used in preworkouts and pump formulas as a means of increasing nitric oxide production. This ingredient has an array of other mental health benefits including anxiety and depression alleviation. Studies have shown agmatine has neuroprotective effects in the brain, and specifically in the hippocampus region. Evidence exists demonstrating agmatine’s ability to control cortisol levels, therefore reducing the effects of stress on the body.
Agmatine is a valuable ingredient that is probably underutilized in the supplement industry today. Between the cognitive boosting and protective effects, it can really be a powerhouse of an ingredient in a nootropic formula when included at generous dosages. Legion Athletics is giving us 500mg here. We like seeing this ingredient at 750mg+ to notice the effects. Nevertheless, this is a solid start here for Ascend.
Legion Athletics included a pretty unique ingredient with Bacopa Monnieri. This ingredient can be traced back centuries as it has been used in Ayurvedic medicine for a wide variety of purposes. The main uses include boosting brain function, alleviating stress and anxiety, while also serving as a treatment for epilepsy.
This ingredient has been extensively studied on its ability to improve memory and even one’s rate of learning. The most interesting benefit of this ingredient is that it has brain growth stimulating properties. Yes, you read that correctly. Bacopa Monnieri has been shown to induce growth in the length and branching of the dendrites of our neurons. The dendrites play a large role in the incredibly complex process of learning and memory that occurs in our nerve cells.
Let’s take a look at a couple of human studies. Researchers in 2015 studied the cognitive effects of Bacopa Monnieri extracts on 46 healthy adults. This double-blind placebo-controlled study randomly assigned participants into one of two treatment categories: 300mg of Bacopa Monnieri or a placebo. Each group received treatment for an extended period, with the maximum effects most evident at the 12-week mark. The experimental group was found to exhibit significantly improved speed of visual information processing, learning rate, and memory consolidation. Their state anxiety was also noticeably reduced.
Another study experienced similar results; however, they also noted an improvement in focus and attention among participants. The experimental group in this study received either 300 or 600mg of Bacopa Monnieri daily for a period of 12-weeks. Following the conclusion of the study, researchers discovered an increase in memory, cognitive processing, alongside suppression of the enzyme that breaks down acetylcholine.
Legion Athletics gives us 330mg of Bacopa Monnieri, which is right in line with the studies discussed here. We like this dose and it is a great addition to this Nootropic.
Alpha-GPC is one of the most common cognitive ingredients on the market today, and for good reason. This ingredient is a choline prodrug, which increases levels of acetylcholine following administration. Acetylcholine is the primary neurotransmitter in the brain that provides neural innervation to the parasympathetic nervous system. One of its main roles is to control memory and cognitive function.
Much of the evidence and research surrounding Alpha-GPC relates to its ability to improve cognitive function of patients with Alzheimer’s disease, which begins to progress through the reduction of acetylcholine in the brain. This ingredient has been proven as a potentially effective means of treatment and/or prevention in these patient populations.
Healthy individuals probably wouldn’t be interested in Alpha-GPC for its ability to reduce the symptoms of Alzheimer’s. They are more interested in Alpha-GPC’s ability to improve the function of a healthy brain. One study looked at the effect of between 200-600mg of Alpha-GPC supplementation on the mental agility, reaction time, hand-eye coordination and power of participants 30 minutes after consumption. The placebo group was found to have lower performance on several of the physical and mental tasks participants performed. Alpha-GPC supplementation slightly outperformed caffeine with a significantly less amount of side effects.
Here we have a dose of 300mg of Alpha-GPC in Ascend. This is the most common dosage you will see in the supplement industry, however that doesn’t mean it is the most effective. In a Nootropic product like Ascend, it would be very beneficial to have a higher dose of Alpha-GPC somewhere in the 450-600mg range. However, we love the addition of this high-quality form of choline and it will definitely add to the cognitive enhancing power Ascend offers.
Legion chose to use another ingredient many people may not be familiar with. However, you may notice the first term looks a bit familiar. Uridine Monophosphate is a molecule that provides the nucleoside base uridine. If you think back to your high school or college biology class, you may remember Uracil is one of the nucleotide bases that make up polypeptide chains of RNA molecules. Therefore, this ingredient serves as a building block for many molecules within the body, including those that regulate several different types of cellular metabolisms and reactions.
Uridine supports many different neuroregulatory processes and neurotransmitters that operate within the brain. Uridine also plays a role in regulating sleep as it acts on the uridine receptors in the brain that regulate your sleep cycle. There is evidence that uridine monophosphate can activate and encourage synaptogenesis, which is the formation of new synapses in the brain. The synapse is the region of neurotransmitter release, which has a key role in learning, memory formation and adaptation.
This ingredient is not one of the most traditional ingredients you would think about having in a nootropic product. It is not very sexy, nor will it have an immediate effect that will be noticeable the first time you take the product. Uridine monophosphate focuses on the backbone of cognition and seeks to improve total mental function and health beginning at the cellular level.
Finally, we have citicoline, which is another form of a choline supplement. Citicoline is a prodrug for both choline and uridine, meaning it converts into these two substances upon ingestion. This ingredient will act in a very similar manner to Alpha-GPC, as they are both choline-containing phospholipids. This ingredient is meant to prevent or treat individuals with memory impairment but has shown potential use among healthy individuals relating to cognitive performance.
Many choline ingredients lack sufficient human evidence for cognitive improvement in healthy populations. Much of the research exists in the prevention of cognitive decline and mental impairment. Very loose evidence exists demonstrating citicoline’s ability to improve focus and attention in humans. Those individuals with central nervous system disorders have appeared to be much more sensitive to supplementation.
Legion Athletics decided to add a second form of choline here from citicoline. While this isn’t a bad choice of ingredient, we think it may be a bit overkill from the choline side of things. Most dosages of citicoline should be between 500-1,000mg, especially when dosed only once per day. Legion is giving us only 300mg of citicoline here. We would have liked to see an increased dosage of Alpha-GPC (to around the 600mg mark) and the addition of a different ingredient here. Citicoline is a reasonable choice, but having another ingredient in its place may be of more value.
We feel that Legion did a pretty decent job with this product. We like that they kept the formula pretty basic, but added a few unique ingredients as well. The transparency is a huge plus, as it is pretty common to see proprietary blends in the nootropic and energy-boosting category of sports supplements. If you are looking for a product that will help power you through whatever task is at hand, Ascend from Legion Athletics would be a solid first stop.
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