Raw IGF-1 is an impressively technical sounding new testosterone booster from Vigor Labs. The IGF-1 of the title refers to Insulin-like Growth Factor 1, a protein in the IGF gene, similar to insulin, which has many influences on the body including muscle growth.
All you really need to know about this product though, is that it claims to promote both high testosterone and human growth hormone as a means of helping you build muscle.
The way it sets about doing this is immediately disappointing, choosing to conceal each crucial ingredient’s exact amount within a proprietary blend, something which might be excusable if the let-downs stopped there.
Let’s look at Raw IGF-1’s formula and see if you’re more forgiving than we were.
How Does Raw IGF-1 Work
There’s one ingredient in this supplement which has it’s dosage listed, so we’ll deal with that first.
Vitamin B6 can actually work really well in a test booster. It works on the C2 pathway in the brain to slow the release of estrogen, the presence of which diminishes testosterone, skewing our hormonal balance. It also reduces gene activity once estrogen is bound to the receptor, neutralising it’s effect.
With estrogen suitably suppressed, testosterone can thrive. 2mg though is a little mean; we’d like to have seen them add a little more, especially in the light of what’s coming next.
Now we come to the 500mg of proprietary blend which makes up the main body of this supplement. Putting aside the obvious problems with all these vague mixtures, 500mg is not a whole lot; especially when you consider that’s shared amongst 6 ingredients. Some boosters dedicate double and triple that amount to just one single ingredient.
It would be unfair to call Longjack useless, but it is pretty one dimensional. This plant extract does nothing to boost the male hormone but does have some ability to stimulate the libido and may help fertility in men. It’s fine when playing a secondary role to some stronger testosterone enhancing elements, but as we’ll see, that’s not exactly the case here.
There was a time when this ingredient was touted as an effective testosterone stimulator, but this possibility has since been ruled out by numerous clinical trials. Despite this many brands resolutely keep pushing it, a loyalty which would be impressive if they weren’t wasting our time and money.
Again, does nothing for your testosterone, but at least in this case has the second prize of helping to improve energy and stamina levels. So it may indirectly facilitate the building of muscle in the gym, but the hard yards will all be down to you. Then again, at just a fraction of 500mg, it’s questionable whether this inclusion will be strong enough to even do what it’s capable of.
Sometimes referred to as ‘First Milk’, according to a recent study from Queensland, this ingredient does show the potential to maintain testosterone levels in exercising athletes and may speed up recovery, but much more research needs to be done before we can back this choice. Speaking completely personally (as a father of two who were both breast fed), I find this a truly revolting addition!
This is a nutrient found in broccoli, kale and other leafy green vegetables which while it doesn’t have any first line testosterone boosting qualities, has shown some real promise in trials as an estrogen suppressant, allowing our hormonal balance to tip favourably in the direction of higher testosterone.
Deer Antler Velvet
Similar to Tribulus Terrestris in that it is another casualty of science, deer antler was once thought to have potent testosterone stimulating abilities, but these claims simply don’t hold up under extensive clinical examination. Another outdated waste of space an money.
Omega 3 Complex
You’ll no doubt have seen the widely publicised benefits of this component independent of testosterone boosters. These fish oils help with joint pain, immunity and general health but do they help to enhance the male hormone? In a word, no.
Better known to us as black pepper, it has no explicit testosterone boosting qualities but does however help the body more efficiently absorb the other nutrients in your supplement (for all the good that will do you in this case)
How Do I Take It?
Raw IGF-1 directs that you take one capsule a day. That’s it. One. This is frankly ludicrous. There is no way that one 500mg serving of hugely underwhelming ingredients is going to keep your testosterone flowing at its optimum, arguably at all, let alone all day.
Ignoring the poor ingredients for a moment, ideally you would be looking for a manageable serving of 3 or 4 capsules spaced out evenly throughout the day to keep the beneficial hormonal effects going.
If you’re a ‘glass half full’ kind of a guy, you might well say one silver lining of a supplement which isn’t going to do anything, is that you’re guaranteed no side effects.
Where Can I Get Raw IGF-1
Raw IGF-1 isn’t actually available yet (at time of writing Nov 2015) but is billed as arriving at Bodybuilding.com later next month. As a result we can’t say how much it will cost but going on similar products on the company’s website it could be as much as $39.99. Needless to say this is far too much for what you’re getting (or not get getting) so we’ll be looking for a considerable mark down from Bodybuilding.com.
Ingredients (2/10) – Believe it or not, this is pretty generous. Raw IGF-1 ingredients miss the mark at nearly every turn. The vitamin B6 and DIM make for promising estrogen suppressors and L-Carnitine could potentially be a good energy lift but without the solid foundation of at least one credible, up-to-date testosterone booster everything else is rendered kind of pointless. It’s like having a few of the trimmings and no turkey at Christmas dinner. Add to this the fact that everything is wrapped up in a comparatively miniscule 500mg, taken just once a day and it’s hard to find anything redeeming here.
Price (6/10) – A pretty standard price point, retailing on bodybuilding.com for $34.99. In light of the ingredients list though, this does not represent good value in our opinion.
Testimonials (5/10) – A handful of reviews, they don’t go into much detail. Seem to be a number of deer antler fans on the bodybuilding.com reviews. Maybe they are hunters or something.
Trustworthiness (6/10) – We couldn’t find any customer service scams or ingredient scandals connected to this product, but then again, it’s not out yet. We’ve no reason to believe this product is dangerous, just ineffective and this low score reflects their attempts to present it as otherwise.
Company (8/10) – Vigor Labs appear to be a highly professional setup with a range of other supplements available including another testosterone booster, Wrecking Balls. There are other types of product available too however, such as fat burners and energy boosters. The background of Vigor Labs isn’t as accessible as we’d like, the website is very commercially centred, with the FAQ relating solely to products and delivery times and the About section just going to contact details. That said, with such a wide and high profile range available, with no horror stories to speak of, we’ve no real reason for concern.
Raw IGF-1 is a bit of a write off really. Where it can go wrong, it invariably does. Most of the ingredients are outdated or irrelevant, the few promising ingredients are hidden inside a proprietary blend and fighting for a share of just 500mg, meaning there’s a good chance they’re under dosed. Harmless, pointless. Whoever formulated this needs to take a good long look in the mirror. Avoid.