Was there an Alpha Brain Scandal?
There are no official scandals involving Alpha Brain by Onnit. The company is based in Austin, Texas, very legitimate and has a glowing reputation as a supplement company. Especially with their backing from Joe Rogan.
If you want to read my full Alpha Brain Review <– click that link and get the whole story.
As for now, in this article we’ll focus on what reasons why Alpha Brain could be the target of a scandal, and if this would be a problem for the Onnit brand.
Why would there be an Alpha Brain scandal?
The main reason there would be an Alpha Brain scandal is purely due to it’s fame. Alpha Brain has been talked about numerous times, in-depth and to a wide-extent on the Joe Rogan podcast.
Joe Rogan does own part of the Onnit brand and he’s perfectly fine to talk about it and promote it on his podcast. These platforms are his (or partly) so there should be no issue there.
However, to the extent that it’s talked about, and praise that it’s been given by Rogan – pushes it towards people to search for a scandal.
It’s a big product that would get a lot of attention if something were to come out about it. Joe Rogan talks about it so frequently (especially in the early days) that you’d be forgiven thinking it was the only supplement in the Onnit Labs range.
But as we’ve mentioned, all this press and attention makes it a target of juicy story, which may result in an alleged scandal.
In our experience though, Onnit seem to be incredibly above board, and do things by the book. I’d be very surprised if the Onnit brand or Alpha Brain ever entered into any scandal.
Alpha Brain is not FDA approved: Is that a scandal?
No. Alpha Brain not being approved by the FDA does not make it scandalous.
We’ve seen various critics on blogs, forums and messaging boards claiming that Alpha Brain is a scam or a scandal because it is not FDA approved.
Here’s a secret: no natural supplements have FDA approval.
This is because the FDA deal primarily with synthetic drugs that are prescription based. Being a natural supplement, Alpha Brain technically qualifies as a dietary supplement.
Dietary supplements are outside of the FDA’s scope. They won’t approve it because they technically can’t. However, if Alpha Brain was it’s own synthetic compound that was made 100% by man in a lab, with the intention of being a prescribed medicine – the FDA would have to evaluate it.
Although it isn’t FDA approved, we believe that Alpha Brain is made in an FDA approved facility. This is as close as you’re going to get in the supplement world when it comes to winning approval of the FDA.
The manufacturing facility will be adhering to the FDA’s standards and making Alpha Brain to the same standards they would a medicine. It’s a good thing and we’re thankful Onnit is a company that does this.
Closest thing to an Alpha Brain Scandal: New York Times Article
The closest thing that Onnit’s Alpha Brain has ever been to a scandal is from a New York Times article in 2015.
In short, a University was experiencing numerous student drug overdoses. Other students were related and arrested for drug charges.
One of the students who was arrested had a “vitamin-and-chemical” supplement in their possession which was identified as Alpha Brain.
After running some tests the Alpha Brain tested positive for amphetamines – which are typically used in study drugs.
Right away, with the New York Times calling a natural supplement like Alpha Brain “vitamin-and-chemical” based, you know we’re going to run into problems.
I for one don’t ever think Alpha Brain has ever slipped amphetamines into their product. Who would want that lawsuit?
I think it’s one of two things:
- False Positive – The drug test gave a false positive, which even the New York Times admits is a possibility.
- Contamination – Amphetamines are used in Adderall which is a common study drug among college students. It may be that the suspect touched some Adderall based product and then touched some Alpha Brain and it’s cross contaminated.
This is the closest Onnit has got to a scandal. I imagine at the time it was something of a PR nightmare – but it’s highly unlikely that would have let something like amphetamine get into their product.
If you’re looking for an Alpha Brain scandal, that 2015 New York Times story is about as close as you’re going to get. Onnit have a killer reputation as they’re always on top of their quality control… they’re always “on it”.
Summary: So there’s no Alpha Brain scandal?
No. We doubt there ever will be one. Although there’s always a risk due to the amount of attention Alpha Brain gets, there will always be someone looking for a story while it is in the limelight via Joe Rogan.
But we don’t think it is likely that it will ever be involved in some kind of coverup, conspiracy or any other kind of scandal.
It’s just a natural nootropic trying to do right in the supplements industry.
Marcus Guffoggio is a keen researcher into every aspect of the human memory. He does whatever he can to push his brain, knowledge and psyche to the next level. He enjoys utilizing various memory systems, as well as experimenting with various nootropics to get the most out of his mental and cognitive performance.