Mdrive: A Scientific Review on Ingredients, Dosage, and Side Effects
Review of: Mdrive Prime and Mdrive Classic by Dream Brands
Some proven test-boosting ingredients.
Mixed customer reviews.
Reasonably priced for a supplement in this category.
- Some proven ingredients
- 60-day money back guarantee
- Free shipping in the US
- Proprietary blends (can't be sure of dosage)
- Refund guarantee only applies if you buy from company website
Summary: Mdrive Prime and Mdrive Classic are the two flagship testosterone boosters manufactured by Dream Brands. I haven't used either of these supplements. But what I have done is scooped out all the applicable research regarding each ingredient and how it interacts with testosterone. Both these supplements have some impressive ingredients, but the drawback is that they're comprised within proprietary blends. I never recommend supplements with proprietary blends because I believe that we should always be aware of dosages before putting anything in our bodies.
Verdict: Not recommended
DOES MDRIVE WORK?
Mdrive is not one product. There are in fact 4 different lines of this supplement: Classic, Prime, Boost & Burn, and Elite. The ingredients are quite similar across these 4 supplements, but for this review, I will go over Prime and Classic; their two flagship testosterone boosters.
Mdrive Prime has quite an impressive ingredient profile. Each ingredient is proven to have a positive interaction with testosterone.
Mdrive Classic contains more ingredients in its proprietary blend than Prime, but leaves out DHEA. DHEA, as you will learn, is a powerful test boosting ingredient.
Although both of these products contain proven ingredients, I don't recommend either. They both have proprietary blends and we can't be sure of each ingredients dosage.
MDRIVE DETAILED REVIEW
The primary aim of this review is to go over the peer-reviewed literature behind each one of the supplements' ingredients.
I've gone over Mdrive Prime's ingredients first followed by Classic's ingredients that are not included in the Prime formula.
I hope that my review provides you with the information you need to make an informed decision before purchase.
Mdrive Prime Ingredients: 4/5
Mdrive Prime includes a micronutrient formula as well as a 710mg proprietary blend comprised of Ashwagandha, Eurycoma Longifolia, and DHEA.
Vitamin D is essential for human survival. It is involved in over 1,000 body functions and contributes to better bone mineralization, a stronger immune system, improved nutrient absorption, and also has anti-diabetic and anti-cancer effects.
Here's a quick look at vitamin D and its interaction with testosterone:
- After analyzing the blood work of 2299 men, researchers found vitamin D levels to be significantly correlated with testosterone and SHBG. In other words, men with sufficient vitamin D had significantly higher testosterone levels and lower SHBG levels compared to men who were deficient in it (1). SHBG is a hormone that binds to testosterone. Less SHBG means that more testosterone is allowed to exert its influence on your mind and body.
- Healthy men (without ED) receiving a daily dose of 3332IU of vitamin D had 25% higher testosterone levels after one year of supplementation compared to placebo (2).
The evidence is pretty clear on this:
Higher vitamin D levels lead to higher testosterone levels. However, keep in mind that this relationship only holds true to a point. Once your vitamin D levels reach the optimal range (which is usually between 75-85 nmol/l), topping them up even further will not increase testosterone (3).
Mdrive Prime provides 400IU of vitamin D. Although this is an estimated 100% of your daily requirement, I would liked to have seen a higher dose. Up to 10,000IU has been seen to be safe in humans, and mega-dosing is the best way to overcome deficiencies quickly.
Vitamin B3 refers to the compound called nicotinic acid, aka niacin. It is an essential B Vitamin, and supplementation is primarily associated with improved markers of cholesterol and triglycerides. Although this makes it seem like niacin is supportive of cardiovascular health, there is a drawback to supplementation as well; niacin increases insulin resistance. This is why niacin is not associated with reduced risk of cardiovascular disease.
Although it has no direct impact on testosterone, niacin is theorized to support growth, mental function, and longevity.
The fact that Mdrive Prime includes 50mg of niacin doesn't hurt, but don't expect it to provide any drastic benefits either.
Vitamin B6 is involved in a variety of physical and psychological functions in the body. It is used in producing a necessary coenzyme that's involved in energy regulation.
Although B6 is essential and involved in a number of bodily functions, there are no unique benefits associated with supplementation. B6 deficiencies are also pretty rare. In the west, people are more likely to have too much of it than too little.
Unlike the previous two B vitamins, B12 deficiency is quite prevalent (4).
Supplementing with vitamin B12 can help benefit your mood, energy, cognition, digestion, heart, skin, and more. B12 is also used to produce enzymes that help balance hormones and maintain a healthy nervous and cardiovascular system.
Given the wide array of benefits that vitamin B12 can have on your body, I was happy to see a 120mcg dose of it in Mdrive Prime.
The direct impact on T will not be noticable, but definitely a good ingredient to include.
Chromium is found in trace amounts in plants and most commonly in grains. It is an essential mineral in the human body.
Chromium regulates the breakdown of glucose for energy and also manages insulin sensitivity. Supplementing with chromium in amounts beyond what your body needs is not associated with any benefits.
The only studies that looked at the interaction between chromium and testosterone levels were performed in women with ovary conditions. Even then, no interaction was seen.
Calcium is most commonly associated with bone health, but there's actually one study that shows an interaction with testosterone:
- Healthy men (without ED) received 35 mg of calcium per kg of bodyweight after exercise. Supplementation was associated with a greater spike in testosterone (5).
The above finding is definitely interesting to note, but it is in no way significant. Also, Mdrive Prime provides a mere 19mg of calcium. That is an estimated 2% of our daily requirement. Why even add it in?
Ashwagandha is a herb that has traditionally been used in Ayurveda (an ancient branch of Indian herbal medicine) to strengthen the immune system after illness. It literally translates to "smell of horse," implying that the herb gives you the strength and virility of a stallion.
Ashwagandha is an adaptogen. It provides your body with the compounds needed to prevent the physical and chemical effects of stress. This is an important point because cortisol (the hormone your body releases when you're stressed) is inversely correlated with testosterone, i.e. higher cortisol=lower testosterone. Let's take a quick look at the research:
- 64 subjects with chronic stress were given a daily dose of either 600mg of ashwagandha or placebo. After 60 days, the ashwagandha group had 28% lower cortisol levels (6).
- Infertile men were given 5g of ashwagandha for 3 months, after which they experienced a significant increase in testosterone levels (10-22%) and a significant decrease in cortisol (36-48%) (7).
- Healthy men (without ED) were given a daily dose of either 600mg of ashwagandha or placebo for 8-weeks. All subjects were also put on a 4-day/week resistance training program. Compared to placebo, the ashwagandha group gained significantly more strength, lost more body fat, and had higher testosterone levels (15.3% increase vs 2.6% increase) as well (8).
Ashwagandha is one of my favorite ingredients to come across in test booster supplements. Even though the first two studies cited above observed the effect in chronically stressed or infertile men, the positive interaction is evident. And the third study really solidifies its status as a test booster because the subjects were "healthy".
Now, obviously the effect of ashwagandha supplementation on infertile and chronically stressed subjects was more drastic, since they had a wider room for improvement, but one thing is for sure:
Ashwagandha will positively influence your T.
I like ashwagandha, but the fact that Mdrive prime stuffed it into a proprietary blend really is a drawback.
Eurycoma Longifolia Extract
Eurycoma Longifolia extract, aka Tongkat Ali, is a herb that has traditionally been prescribed as an aphrodisiac. Today, it's a popular ingredient in many test boosters. But does it work? Here's what the research has to say:
- 63 subjects (32 men, 31 women) were screened for moderate stress and given a daily dose of either 200mg of tongkat ali or placebo for 4 weeks. Compared to placebo, the tongkat ali group had 16% lower cortisol levels and 37% higher testosterone levels (9).
- In men with hypogonadism (low testosterone) supplementing with 200mg of Tongkat Ali per day was able increase testosterone levels by 46% in one month (10).
Now keep in mind that the subjects in these studies were stressed or had very low testosterone levels to begin with. If you don't currently face the same conditions, then supplementing with Eurycome is not likely to affect your T to the same extent.
More research is needed to solidify Eurycoma Longifolia's status as a testosterone booster, but a positive interaction definitely exists.
Dehydroepiandrosterone, aka DHEA, is actually not even a supplement; it's a steroid hormone. It exerts influences of its own, but can also be converted into testosterone or estrogen depending on the body's needs.
There is a lot of research that has been performed studying the interaction between DHEA and testosterone, but the vast majority of it has been performed on menopausal women. Either way, here are a couple of studies for our interests:
- 20 young male soccer players (19-22) were randomly assigned to receive a daily dose of either 100mg of DHEA or placebo for 28 days. Compared to placebo, the subjects receiving DHEA experienced a 39.5% increase in total testosterone levels (11).
- 24 men (58-67) were randomly assigned to receive a daily dose of either 50mg of DHEA or placebo. After 2 months, the subjects receiving DHEA had 33% higher testosterone levels (12).
- 83 healthy men (nonhospitalized, nondiseased, independently living), aged 70 and over, were randomly assigned to receive a daily dose of one of four interventions: 1) 100mg of atamestane (an aromatase inhibitor), 2) 50mg of DHEA, 3) a combination of 100mg atamestane and 50mg of DHEA, 4) placebo (13). After 36 weeks the results are as follows:
- Group 1: 42.2% increase in total testosterone.
- Group 2: 30.4% increase in total testosterone.
- Group 3: 66.4% increase in total testosterone.
- Group 4: 10.6% increase in total testosterone.
On the basis of these three studies, DHEA has a tremendous positive interaction with testosterone. But keep in mind that there are other studies that show no such interaction.
That being said, I don't know how I feel about putting exogenous hormones in my body. Depending on your location, you may not even be legally allowed to obtain DHEA. Even though the effects are not as potent, it is considered to be in the same bracket as anabolic steroids.
Piperine is the active compound in black pepper. Although it doesn't provide any unique benefits, it can inhibit enzymes that attack other enzymes.
In other words, piperine was added to Mdrive Prime to increase the absorption of some of its other ingredients.
Mdrive Classic Ingredients (not included in Prime)
The following is an analysis of the research on the ingredients that are in Classic but not in Prime.
Cordyceps is a mushroom that has traditionally been used in China for its apparent anti-aging and pro-fertility properties.
At the current stage of research, cordyceps extract is only a potential testosterone booster.
Pine Sterols (Pine Pollen)
This is the name given to supplements derived from the pollen of pine trees.
The pollen that is most commonly used as a supplement is derived from Scots Pine (Pinus sylvestris), since some studies have detected that it literally contains testosterone in it (16).
The content of testosterone in Scots Pine, however, seems too low to have any significant impact on the human body. Also, due to a lack of human research, it is not a proven testosterone boosting ingredient.
Agmatine is a derivative of L-Arginine. It has been studied for its ability to alleviate neuropathic pain, drug addiction, and depression.
One study shows agmatine to have a positive impact on LH (precursor for testosterone) in rats (17), but this is the one and only study I was able to find on the topic. As such, agmatine is not a reliable test booster.
Maca is a cruciferous vegetable that belongs to the broccoli family. It has been shown to have powerful libido-enhancing properties (18, 19), but let's see if it has any interaction with testosterone:
- 57 men were given a daily dose of either 1.5g or 3g of maca over 12 weeks. Although subjects in both groups experienced increases in sexuality, no change in testosterone levels was observed (20).
- Another study, with basically the same context as the one above (56 men, 1.5g or 3g of Maca, 12 week time frame), also observed the same result: no interaction with testosterone (21).
It's important to understand that although higher testosterone is associated with an increased sex drive, the inverse is not necessarily true (higher libido does not mean higher testosterone).
Maca is an ingredient that leads the user to believe that it must be working, due to their increased libido. But the bottom line is that it influences parameters of libido without having any interaction with testosterone.
Ginseng is amongst the most widely-used herbs in the world. It seems to be effective at boosting mood, improving immunity, and increasing cognition. But does it interact with testosterone? Here's what the research has to say:
- 60 infertile men were randomly assigned to receive either 3g of ginseng or placebo for 12 weeks. The subjects supplementing with ginseng were found to have improved markers of penile performance, but testosterone levels remained the same across both groups (22).
- In men with poor sperm mobility, ginseng supplementation was able to increase testosterone levels (23).
Although ginsengs interaction with testosterone is unreliable, it is a proven nitric oxide booster. This means that it has been shown to dilate the blood vessels and improve blood flow.
Mdrive Prime has an average rating of 3.3/5 stars on Amazon.com after 69 customer reviews.
Mdrive Classic has an average rating of 3.8/5 stars on Amazon.com after 74 customer reviews.
Mdrive Prime retails for $27.78 for a 1-month's supply ($0.9/serving).
Mdrive Classic retails for $29.99 for a 1-month's supply ($1/serving).
Keep in mind that side-effects listed below are only possible side effects. They are only likely to occur if you exceed the dosage recommendations on the label.
Possible Side-Effects of Ashwagandha
- Stomach upset
Possible Side-Effects of Tongkat Ali
No information currently available about side-effects.
Possible Side-Effects of DHEA
- High blood pressure
Possible Side-Effects of Cordyceps
- Dry mouth
Possible Side-Effects of Pine Sterols
Possibly safe when taken for short periods of time.
Possible Side-Effects of Agmatine
- Lower pain threshold
Possible Side-Effects of Maca
- Over-load of iron
- Impaired thyroid function
- Hot flashes
- Abdominal cramps
Possible Side-Effects of Ginseng
- Difficulty sleeping
- Upset stomach
HOW DOES IT COMPARE?
For this portion of the review, let's see how Mdrive Prime stacks up against some other best-selling testosterone supplements.
Mdrive vs Nugenix
Nugenix is a supplement that has been selling amazingly well for years; both online at Amazon, and offline at GNC stores around the world.
Liek Mdrive, Nugenix also contains a proprietary blend. The blend consists of L-Citrulline, Tribulus, and Fenugreek. None of these ingredients have any evidence to support a positive interaction with testosterone. Mdrive Prime, on the other hand, has research to support each one of its ingredients.
Though I don't recommend either of these supplements, Mdrive definitely has a better ingredient profile.
Winner: Mdrive Prime
Mdrive vs Test X180 Ignite
The primary ingredients in Force Factor's Test X180 formula include Fenugreek and Horny Goat Weed.
Fenugreek has a bunch of research showing inconclusive results. Some studies say that it increases T while others say that it has no impact.
Horny Goat Weed has no human studies, although studies in rats to report interesting results.
Once again, Mdrive comes out on top in this case.
Winner: Mdrive Prime
Mdrive vs Progene
The primary ingredient in Progene is L-Arginine. This is thought to be a potent nitric oxide booster, but studies show that supplementing with L-Arginine is not actually a great way to boost arginine levels in the blood. It has a very poor absorption rate.
Progene also packs in some Tongkat Ali and DHEA, but they are in very low doses. Not likely to have any significant impact on testosterone. Some other ingredients include tribulus, ginseng, and saw palmetto; all ingredients that have been proven to have no impact on testosterone.
Even though Progene and Mdrive Prime have similar ingredients, Mdrive comes out on top in this case because the doses in Progene are too low.
Winner: Mdrive Prime
Mdrive vs Ageless Male
The primary ingredient in Ageless Male is 300mg of fenugreek. As mentioned before, fenugreek does not have conclusive evidence supporting its status as a testosterone booster.
Ageless Male also packs in some micronutrients, including zinc and magnesium. Although the zinc content is about 100% of the daily requirement, the magnesium dose is only 4% of the daily requirement.
Once again, Mdrive comes out on top. But this doesn't mean that I recommend it.
Winner: Mdrive Prime