Below we’ll look at the supplements Andrew Huberman uses and discusses.
Please note that Andrew is not an MD, and does not give medical recommendations. He stresses the importance of talking to your doctor before making changes to your supplements.
This post is continually updated, and you can view the change log here.
Andrew Huberman Supplements List
Andrew takes all 3 together ~60 minutes before bed.
For Increasing Testosterone:
Andrew combines these two, but they can also be taken separately.
- Turkesterone – discussed, but he doesn’t take it
- Zinc – important for maintaining healthy testosterone levels
For Boosting Cognitive Function:
Generally taken at separate times, rather than combined.
For Maintaining Good Cognitive Function:
Further supplements Andrew takes:
- Vitamin D – important steroid hormone
- Athletic Greens – spirulina based powder
- Ashwagandha – for stress reduction
- Multivitamin – taken daily
Further supplements Andrew mentions, but doesn’t use:
Supplements Andrew Avoids:
Table of Contents
- 1 Andrew Huberman Supplements List
- 2 Andrew Huberman Sleep Cocktail
- 3 Increasing Testosterone
- 4 For Boosting Cognitive Function
- 5 For Maintaining Good Cognitive Function
- 6 Further Supplements Andrew Takes
- 7 Further Supplements Andrew Mentions
- 8 Supplements Andrew Avoids
- 9 Tracking & Measuring His Health
- 10 Roundup
- 11 Further Reading
^ Andrew and Joe Rogan talking on JRE #1683
Now for a more detailed look at these supplements:
Andrew Huberman Sleep Cocktail
Andrew hopes that most people are able to fall asleep without assistance.
However, for those who can’t, he’s quick to point out there’s a middle ground between doing nothing, and taking sleeping medication. The latter of which can come with nasty side effects and sometimes addiction.
The sleep cocktail that Andrew says has been amazing for his sleep are:
- Magnesium Threonate – 140mg
- L-Theanine – 100-300mg
- Apigenin – 50mg
All 3 taken ~60 minutes before bed.
Then, if he really needs sleep, 3-4 times per week he also uses:
- 2g of Glycine
- 100mg of GABA
It’s worth noting that for many people, even just the addition of magnesium and/or theanine may have a positive effect on their sleep.
After the audio clip we discuss all these sleep supplements in more detail.
^ A clip from Episode 28 of Andrew’s podcast
Magnesium is very important to the human body, and is involved in over 600 enzymatic reactions1Magnesium in man: implications for health and disease – Bindels et al. | 2015 | Physiological Reviews.
Specific to sleep, magnesium supplementation can activate the parasympathetic nervous system2Long-term HRV analysis shows stress reduction by magnesium intake – Nolden et al. | RCT, n=100 | 2016 | MMW – Fortschritte der Medizin, which is responsible for, among other things, slowing the heart and relaxing the muscles – producing a calming effect.
For those who aren’t getting adequate amounts of magnesium from their diets; supplementing it can have a noticeable affect on sleep.
Andrew personally preferences Threonate, but notes that Bisglycinate appears to work well too – as both can cross the blood-brain barrier.
In terms of suggested dosage for magnesium Andrew mentions:
^ Image source
My interpretation is that the dose is dependent upon the form of Magnesium. If it’s Magnesium Threonate, then less is suggested (~140 mg), whereas with bisglycinate, the standard dose is slightly higher (200 mg or more).
Examples of reputable brands of L-Threonate include:
|Product||Servings||Price||Cost per 144mg|
|Life Extension – L-Threonate||30x 144mg||$31||$1.03|
|DoubleWood – L-Threonate||25x 144mg||$25 with coupon||$1.01|
|Momentous – L-Threonate||30x 144mg||$42 with coupon||$1.41|
Magnesium Threonate is typically more expensive than other magnesium sources due to it being patented and sold as “Magtein” – more info.
Reputable brands of Magnesium Glycinate include:
|Product||Capsules||Price||Cost per 100mg|
|Pure Encapsulations – Magnesium Glycinate||90x 120mg||$23||$0.21|
|Double Wood – Magnesium Glycinate||180x 60mg||$17 with coupon||$0.16|
Andrew’s Dose: ~140mg of Threonate
Theanine, which is an amino acid found in tea, can have calming effects when supplemented3Theanine consumption, stress and anxiety in human clinical trials: A systematic review – Naumovski | Meta-review | 2016 | Journal of Nutrition & Intermediary Metabolism..
One of the ways it does this is to increase “alpha brain waves” – a type of brain wave that is associated with calm and relaxation4L-theanine, a natural constituent in tea, and its effect on mental state – Owen et al. | 2008 |Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition. As opposed to Beta and Gamma brain waves – which are associated with alertness and problem solving.
Andrew notes that theanine can increase the intensity of dreams, and thus may not be suitable for those with night terrors or who sleepwalk.
Again, as with threonate above, Andrew has mentioned different doses at different times. For example, 100-300mg and 200-400mg. Granted it’s all in the same ball park. If you’re new to theanine, it’s probably best to start at the bottom end of the dosing scale (~100mg) and gradually increase as you see fit.
Andrew notes that for a small percentage of people, Theanine can be too stimulating:
^ Image source
Examples of reputable brands include:
|Product||Capsules||Price||Cost per 100mg|
|Life Extension – Theanine||60 x 100mg||$18||$0.30|
|DoubleWood – Theanine||120 x 200mg||$16 with coupon||$0.07|
|Momentous – Theanine||60 x 200mg||$34 with coupon||$0.28|
Andrew’s Dose: 100-300mg
Apigenin is one of the active ingredients in chamomile tea, and according to Andrew can help promote sleep and sleep onset.
Andrew notes that apigenin is a mild estrogen suppressor, and he doesn’t think women should take it.
He also notes that for men, taking estrogen levels too low can affect brain health and libido.
Authors note: Based on apigenin suppressing estrogen, it appears to be a supplement you’d want to be cautious of taking regularly. At least until there’s more research.
Examples of brands include:
- Momentous – Apigenin – 50 mg – (see 15% off discount code)
- Double Wood – Apigenin – 50 mg – (see 15% off discount code)
Andrew’s Dose: 50mg
GABA & Glycine
Andrew says that if you ever really need to sleep, taking GABA and Glycine can help.
He describes it more as a “hard hit over the head”, and doesn’t recommend people take it regularly.
His reasoning being that he doesn’t like to take things that are too close to the neurotransmitter you’re trying to manipulate. In this case, taking GABA to manipulate the GABAergic system.
GABA (Gamma-aminobutyric acid) is the main inhibitory neurotransmittor in the brain. When supplemented it’s often with the intention that it will have a calming effect on the nervous system. There is some debate as to whether GABA crosses the blood-brain barrier5Effects of Oral Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid (GABA) Administration on Stress and Sleep in Humans: A Systematic Review – Hepsomali et al. (2020) | Frontiers in Science. Whether it does or does not, it may also act on the peripheral nervous system through the gut-brain axis6Gamma-aminobutyric acid as a bioactive compound in foods: a review – Diana et al. (2014) | Journal of Functional Foods.
Glycine is a non-essential amino acid, abundant in animal products. It’s thought to improve sleep by helping to reduce the core body temperature7New Therapeutic Strategy for Amino Acid Medicine: Glycine Improves the Quality of Sleep – Bannai et al. (2012) | Journal of Pharmacological Sciences.
Dosage: In the audio clip above Andrew mentions 1g of GABA and 1g of Glycine. However, in Andrew’s toolkit for sleep and on Twitter he mentions 2g of Glycine and 100mg of GABA taken 3-4 times per week.
In his tweet he describes the Magnesium, Theanine & Apigenin combo, and then goes on to say he *also* takes GABA & Glycine 3-4 times per week. Which I take to mean, in addition, rather than in place of.
Side Effects: GABA can have sedative like effects at higher doses, therefore it’s important to treat it with caution. Do not combine it with driving a vehicle or operating machinery.
For those already taking drugs that interact with the GABAergic system, such as barbiturates and benzodiazepines, it would be especially important to consult with your doctor before taking GABA.
Examples of GABA brands include:
Examples of Glycine brands include:
- NOW – Glycine – 1,000 mg (1g) capsules
- Double Wood – Glycine – 500 mg capsules (see 15% off coupon code)
In Andrew’s recent video on OCD, he mentions experimenting with taking 900 mg of myo-inositol alongside his sleep cocktail of magnesium threonate, theanine and apigenin.
Saying that he has noticed an improvement in his sleep since taking it.
^ Audio clip from Andrew’s podcast #78 on OCD from 2:04:51
Inositol is a type of sugar, found in the brain and other tissues, which mediates cell signal conversion in response to hormones, neurotransmitters and growth factors. When these external signals reach the cell they are converted into internal messengers, for which myo-inositol is involved 8The cellular language of myo- inositol signaling – Glenda E. Gillaspy (2011).
To clear up some potential confusion on inositol naming, there are 3 common inositol supplements:
- Inositol hexaphosphate (IP6)
If a supplement is simply named “inositol”, it’s usually myo-inositol – but it’s worth checking to be sure.
Examples of brands include:
- Momentous – Inositol – 900 mg per capsule
- Life Extension – Inositol – 1,000 mg per capsule
- Jarrow Formulas – Inositol – 750 mg per capsule
Andrew appreciates the importance of healthy levels of testosterone, and suggests before adding any supplements “the basics” need to be in check, which are:
- Good quality sleep
- Healthy diet
- Regular exercise (but not over trained)
- Avoiding chronic stress
However, once those boxes are ticked, he mentions 2 supplements that have been useful for him; Tongkat Ali and Fadogia Agrestis.
He says that 6 years ago, his total testosterone was at around 600. After he started taking Tongkat Ali and Fadogia Agrestis, it went up approximately 200 points to the high 700s / low 800s (ng/dL).
He continued taking these supplements consistently for several years.
^ Listen to the full podcast here – this section is ~2hr mark
As of early 2021, Andrew has started experimenting with Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT), as part of research for a book he’s writing on hormone optimization. For more on his use of TRT – see this post.
^ Andrew teaching via his YouTube channel
Tongkat Ali comes from a plant that’s native to Southeast Asia. There it’s treated as a medicinal plant and has many different uses9Tongkat Ali (Eurycoma longifolia Jack): A review on its ethnobotany and pharmacological importance – Karim et al. | Fitoterapia | 2010.
Andrew explains that Tongkat Ali will increase testosterone when taken at 400mg daily. He suggests:
- Taking it early in the day as it can have a little bit of a stimulant effect.
- Taking it every day, rather than once-off, as the effect appears to improve as you get into the second and third month of use.
- No need to cycle it, unless something has spiked on your blood tests – such as liver enzymes – suggesting the need to stop.
Examples of brands include:
- Momentous – Tongkat Ali – 400 mg per capsule (see 15% off discount code)
- Double Wood – Tongkat Ali Complex – 500 mg per capsule (see 15% off discount code)
- Double Wood – Tongkat Ali (LJ100) – 100 mg per capsule – purified version, so less needed (see 15% off discount code)
Andrew’s Dosage: 400mg per day
Fadogia Agrestis is a plant found natively in Nigeria, for which the stem is used as a herbal medicine to treat a range of issues.
For the purposes of testosterone increase, Andrew describes Fadogia Agrestis as a Luteneizing Hormone mimic, which stimulates the testes to produce more testosterone. When measuring his bloods, Andrew notes he didn’t see an increase in estrogen, or a down-regulation in lutenizing hormone – which was good.
In terms of daily dose – he mentioned taking 425 mg per day in the above audio clip interview with Tim Ferriss. Separately in a Joe Rogan interview he mentions 600 mg per day is the typical dose (@ 5m 58s). In the Momentous brand which he’s involved with, they use 600 mg per day.
Examples of reputable brands include:
- Momentous – Fadogia Agrestis – 600 mg per capsule (see 15% off discount code)
- Double Wood – Fadogia Agrestis – 300 mg per capsule (see 15% off discount code)
Andrew’s Dose: 425 mg to 600 mg per day
It’s worth briefly mentioning Turkesterone, after Andrew discussed it on a Joe Rogan podcast episode. It’s worth noting though, that he hasn’t taken it before himself.
Andrew talked up the properties of turkesterone quite highly, saying that it increases testosterone, performance and recovery comparatively to Deca – a well known anabolic steroid used by bodybuilders.
Looking at the literature, it doesn’t appear to be well studied in humans, and I can’t find research papers to back up his claim. The studies so far appear to be in-vitro and in animals. It’s possible it will be more formally studied in time.
It’s referred to as being part of the ecdysteroid family. Meaning that it’s a steroid hormone used by a specific group of insects (anthropods). In the same way that humans and other mammals manufacture hormones from cholesterol, so do anthropods. It also happens that the hormones they use are similar to ours.
Examples of brands include:
Andrew points to a 2020 paper10The causes of adverse changes of testosterone levels in men – Wrzosek et al. | 2020 | Expert Review of Endocrinology & Metabolism Journal showing that testosterone levels are negatively impacted by deficiencies in zinc, magnesium and vitamin D.
Zinc is crucial to the creation of Luteinizing Hormone and Follicle Stimulating Hormone. Luteinizing Hormone in males stimulates the testes to produce testosterone. Meaning insufficient zinc can result in less testosterone.
Whilst the mechanism in women is slightly different, insufficient zinc will also negatively affect women’s testosterone levels11Effect of Zinc on Testosterone Levels and Sexual Function of Postmenopausal Women: A Randomized Controlled Trial – Nia et al. | 2021 | Journal of Sex & Marital Therapy.
It’s worth noting that if you have adequate zinc levels, adding more zinc won’t boost your testosterone. Only that not getting enough is likely to drop testosterone levels.
NIH guidelines suggest males need 11 mg per day and women need 8 mg. With an upper limit guideline of around 40 mg for both sexes.
Brands of zinc include:
For Boosting Cognitive Function
– For hard workouts or work sessions
One of Andrew’s preferred supplements for supporting cognitive function is Alpha-GPC (up to 3-4x per week).
If he really wants to push a gym session, or work session, he’ll take 300mg of Alpha-GPC prior. Combining it with coffee or yerba mate, and sometimes adding phenylethylamine also.
^ Listen to the full podcast here – this section is around ~2hr 13m mark
In podcast #80 Andrew mentions that a study found an association between long term use of AlphaGPC and increased risk of stroke12Association of L-α Glycerylphosphorylcholine With Subsequent Stroke Risk After 10 Years – Lee et al. (2021) JAMA Neurology.
One possible reason for this is that AlphaGPC increases blood levels of a chemical called TMAO, which itself is associated with atherosclerosis.
It’s worth noting that this study looked at a cohort in Korea taking AlphaGPC regularly for cognitive decline.
Whilst the paper doesn’t specify their daily dosage, I reached out to the lead author (Gyeongsil Lee) to learn more. He said that in Korea, the typical dosage prescribed by doctors there is 400mg 3x per day, so 1,200 mg per day, every day.
So what they’re taking in a single day is roughly comparable to what Andrew might take in a week.
Andrew’s approach to reduce his TMAO levels (a tip from Dr Kyle Gillett, former podcast guest), was to add 600 mg of garlic (which contains allicin) the same day as taking AlphaGPC.
Saying that his bloodwork showed a decrease in TMAO after he added the garlic. Solaray make a 600mg garlic supplement (link).
Examples sources of AlphaGPC include:
|Brand||Capsules||Cost per bottle||Cost per 300mg|
|Momentous – AlphaGPC||60 * 300 mg||33.95 with coupon||$0.56|
|Double Wood – AlphaGPC||60 * 300 mg||$19.95||$0.33|
|Jarrow – AlphaGPC||60 * 300 mg||$23.07||$0.38|
Andrew’s Dose: 300mg
– For improved focus and attention
Very occasionally (1x per week maximum) Andrew will use 500mg to 1,000mg of L-Tyrosine – which is a precursor to dopamine.
Pathway = L-Tyrosine -> L-Dopa -> Dopamine
He finds it enhances focus and attention, but it does come with a crash after. Noting that you don’t want to use it when you’re already sleep deprived.
He says that sensitivity to l-tyrosine varies a lot. Some people can tolerate up to 2,000 mg, others find 100 mg is plenty, and for some the optimal dosage is zero.
He uses it occasionally, and has found it useful for working late to meet a deadline, but generally tries to avoid that.
^ Listen to the full podcast with Kevin Rose
Related, Andrew mentions a supplement called Mercuna Pruriens which contains the direct precursor to dopamine; L-Dopa. However, he avoids Mercuna Pruriens because he finds it too intense with too much of a crash after.
Examples of L-Tyrosine supplements include:
|Brand||Capsules||Price||Cost per 500mg|
|Momentous – L-Tyrosine||60 * 500||$24||$0.40|
|Thorne – L-Tyrosine||90 * 500mg||$22||$0.24|
|NOW – L-Tyrosine||120 * 500mg||$11||$0.09|
Andrew’s Dose: 500mg
Phenylethylamine, also known as beta-phenylethylamine, or PEA for short – is supplement, like L-Tyrosine, which increases dopamine.
Interestingly, chocolate is naturally rich in PEA.
Andrew says he takes it occasionally as a work aid to enhance focus, about once a week or once every 2 weeks.
He combines 500 mg of PEA with 300 mg of AlphaGPC, and says it leads to a sharp and transient increase in dopamine that lasts around 30 to 45 minutes. He finds the feeling from PEA more regulated and balanced than L-Tyrosine.
In terms of sourcing Phenylethylamine, there are a few options on Amazon. Although when I last checked none were from well known brands.
It’s worth being careful you don’t buy Phenylalanine by accident. The names look similar, but the effects are quite different.
If you’re thinking of trying PEA, it’s worth glancing over the potential side effects at this link prior.
For Maintaining Good Cognitive Function
Omega-3 Fatty Acids / EPA
Andrew explains that the most important food element for brain function is fat.
Noting that while most of us get enough omega-6 fatty acids, it’s common to under consume omega-3s.
Andrew suggests that everyone should be striving to get at least:
- 1 gram of EPA omega-3 oil per day
Potent sources include sardines, mackerel, salmon and caviar. Vegetarian sources include chia seeds, hemp seeds, flax seeds and walnuts.
Andrew aims to consume 2-3 grams of EPA per day, opting to take it as a fish oil supplement, on the basis that he rarely eats fish.
When it comes to omega-3 sources, it’s easy to just pick up any old option, and tick the box.
However, as with many things, the more you learn about them the more complexity there is.
For example, as with all oils, it’s possible for them to ‘oxidize’. This is an undesirable chemical reaction involving oxygen that degrades the quality of an oil. There are levels of oxidation from very little, all the way up to being noticeably rancid tasting.
Another aspect is the presence of heavy metals. As you’re probably aware, fish accumulate heavy metals, and the bigger the fish, typically the more heavy metals they contain. Therefore, ideally your fish oil is sourced from smaller fish such as sardines and anchovies, which typically contain less heavy metals.
Oil can then be purified to decrease contaminants.
So how does one choose fish oil that contains low levels of oxidation and heavy metals?
Ideally you want to choose products that have been tested and found to reliably contain low levels. We’ll go on to discuss how to do this.
Although it’s worth pausing for a moment to point out that omega-3s sourced from algae, rather than fish, generally have low levels of oxidation and heavy metals.
The downside? Per gram of EPA & DHA they’re a lot more expensive.
Algae based omega-3s, as you’d imagine, are particularly popular with vegans and vegetarians.
So, how does one check this in the fish oils that they’re interested in buying?
Probably the best source is one called IFOS (International Fish Oil Standards) who offer a certification to brands who opt in. They will then test batches and report on heavy metals and oxidation levels.
It’s their data that I’ve included in the table below.
A second source of third party testing is labdoor.com.
Below are examples of reputable fish oil brands, along with the 3rd party testing data on total oxidation and heavy metals:
|Name||Price||Flavored?||Quantity||EPA/DHA||Total Oxidation*||Heavy Metals*|
|Viva Naturals Triple Strength||$22 with coupon||Unflavored||90 soft gels||700 / 240 mg||6.30||Passed|
|Carlson Maximum Omega 2000||$36||Lemon Flavor||90 soft gels||625 / 250 mg||6.09||Passed|
|Thorne Super EPA||$33||Unflavored||90 soft gels||425 / 270 mg||No data**||No data**|
|Momentous Omega-3||$32 with coupon||Lemon Flavor||60 soft gels||375 / 375 mg||No data**||No data**|
*Oxidation levels & heavy metal results come via IFOS batch tests
**Thorne and Momentous do not participate in IFOS testing, hence no data
Vegetarian / Vegan Fish Oil Alternatives?
Andrew personally opts to get his omega-3s from fish oil, due to its high levels of EPA & DHA per gram.
However, for those who don’t consume fish products, getting enough EPA and (particularly) DHA can be difficult.
Often vegetarians/vegans will rely upon consuming foods that contain alpha linolenic acid (ALA), but this has a few issues:
- ALA is weakly converted to EPA – Research estimates between 0.2% to 6% of ALA is converted to EPA14Metabolism of α-linolenic acid in humans – G.C. Burdge | (see section 7.2 of paper) | 2006 | Journal: PLEFA.
- ALA barely converts to DHA – The same research paper above estimates 0.05% or less of ALA is converted to DHA15Metabolism of α-linolenic acid in humans – G.C. Burdge | (see section 7.2 of paper) | 2006 | Journal: PLEFA.
- This aligns with research showing that vegetarians and vegans have lower levels of EPA & DHA compared to those who eat fish16Blood docosahexaenoic acid and eicosapentaenoic acid in vegans: Associations with age and gender and effects of an algal-derived omega-3 fatty acid supplement – Sarter et al. | 2014 | Clinical Nutrition.
The good news is that research shows algae based omega-3s will raise EPA & DHA levels in vegans, even at relatively low dose17Blood docosahexaenoic acid and eicosapentaenoic acid in vegans: Associations with age and gender and effects of an algal-derived omega-3 fatty acid supplement – Sarter et al. | 2014 | Clinical Nutrition. A study showed their omega-3 index score went from 3.1 to 4.8 after 4 months of taking 172mg DHA & 82mg of EPA per day.
Using data from Labdoor.com and IFOS, I’ve compiled a short list of algae based omega-3s, so you can see their approximate cost per gram of EPA & DHAs:
Glutamine (aka L-Glutamine) is one of 20 amino acids (the building blocks of protein), and is naturally derived from food sources.
It can also be taken as a supplement, and Andrew has been taking it regularly since his college days for its immune-enhancing effects.
Specifically it can aid with intestinal health18The Roles of Glutamine in the Intestine and Its Implication in Intestinal Diseases | Kim et al. | 2017 | International Journal of Molecular Sciences, and is an important fuel for immune cells19Why Is L-Glutamine Metabolism Important to Cells of the Immune System in Health, Postinjury, Surgery or Infection? | Newsholme | 2001 | The Journal of Nutrition.
In Andrews podcast titled “Nutrients for Brain Health and Performance” (link), Andrew describes how glutamine can also be beneficial to the brain.
First, glutamine helps in offsetting sugar cravings by communicating with the brain via glutamine-sensing neurons in the mucosal lining of the gut. On picking up the presence of the amino acid glutamine, these neurons signal satiety and satisfaction.
Secondly, Andrew talks about the protective effect of glutamine on cognition in hypoxic conditions such as high altitudes or sleep apnea20The Possible Importance of Glutamine Supplementation to Mood and Cognition in Hypoxia from High Altitude | Quaresma et al. | 2020 | Nutrients Journal.
Good sources of gluatmine include beef, fish, eggs, dairy, cottage cheese as well as vegetables like beans, cabbage, spinach and parsely.
When supplementing, Andrew says that people use anywhere from 1 gram up to 10 grams per day (high dose). He says that he takes it regularly in small doses, but doesn’t mention the specific amount.
Sources of L-Gluatmine include include:
Whilst creatine is a well known supplement for bodybuilding, Andrew explains that he takes it primarily for its cognitive benefits.
Specifically for its ability to help modulate and support the brain networks involved in focus and concentration.
He takes 5 grams per day of creatine monohydrate – mixing the powder into whatever he is drinking at the time.
In terms of timing, he takes it in the morning, or after his workout, it depends when he remembers.
Reputable brands of creatine powder include:
|Product||Quantity||Price||Cost per 5g|
|Momentous – Creatine||450 grams||$29.70 with coupon||$0.33|
|NOW – Creatine||500 grams||$26.17||$0.26|
|Thorne – Creatine||450 grams||$36.00||$0.40|
Further Supplements Andrew Takes
Vitamin D is essential to the human body and has a direct effect on the expression of more than 1,000 genes in most of our cells21Vitamin D: A Micronutrient Regulating Genes – Carsten Carlberg | 2019 | Current Pharmaceutical Design .
Andrew mentions in his interview with Rhonda Patrick (at 1:25:30) that he takes 5,000 to 10,000IU of vitamin D per day, and says his vitamin D levels are within range on blood tests.
It’s worth noting the multivitamin he takes, mentioned below, contains 1,500 IU (37.5 mcg) per serving (3 capsules).
Reputable brands include:
Athletic Greens is a brand of green powder that you mix with water and drink.
They’re a sponsor of Andrew’s podcast, and Andrew says he has been using them for over 12 years.
Citing the vitamins, minerals and probiotics as the reason he takes it once to twice per day.
The product was formerly called “Athletic Greens Ultimate Daily”, and now it’s called Athletic Greens AG1, or just AG1.
Perhaps the rebrand leads the way for an AG2 version?
Health influencer Rhonda Patrick was asked her thoughts on Athletic Greens in her May 2022 Q&A.
She noted it contains a blue green micro algae called spirulina, which is a potential source of a liver toxin called microcistins.
Therefore she suggested to the subscriber who raised the question to contact Althetic Greens for their microcystin testing data.
To her knowledge the subscriber didn’t receive a reply containing data to allay this potential concern.
If any readers have this data from Athletic Greens it would be great if they could share.
^ Source Podcast #42
Andrew explains in his Tools for managing Stress & Anxiety video that he occasionally uses Ashwagandha during stressful periods.
It’s a plant that grows natively on the Indian sub-continent, and has been used for >3,000 years in ayurvedic medicine for a variety of isuses.
Andrew notes that there has been significant research confirming this effect, such as a randomized controlled trial that found a 20% reduction in cortisol, and a 40% reduction in perceived stress, compared to the placebo group22A prospective, randomized double-blind, placebo-controlled study of safety and efficacy of a high-concentration full-spectrum extract of ashwagandha root in reducing stress and anxiety in adults – Chandrasekhar et al. | 2012 | Indian Journal of Psychological Medicine.
^ Cortisol reduction results from an Ashwagandha Study
However, Andrew doesn’t like to take it chronically, and will stop after a few days, or max a week, and then go back to his normal routines. This is to avoid dependence and a build-up of tolerance.
Andrew doesn’t say in his video how much he takes, but suggests people refer to examine.com for doses – where they say that studies typically use between 250-600 mg/day. With the most common dosing protocol being 600mg /day divided into 2 doses, one in the morning with breakfast and one in the evening.
^ Listen to the full podcast here
Examples of reputable brands with doses from low to high:
- Jarrow – Ashwagandha – 300mg per capsule
- NOW – Ashwagandha – 450mg per capsule
- Pure Encapsulations – Ashwagandha – 500mg per capsule
Andrew says that he takes a multivitamin once per day. Specifically one called Opti-Men by Optimum Nutrition.
Saying that he has been taking it for about 25 years, and it’s more a result of habit than recent research.
However, he says he checks his blood markers regularly, and it certainly doesn’t appear to be causing any harm.
Further Supplements Andrew Mentions
Andrew discusses cissus in the context of boosting serotonin.
Citing a study where participants took 300 mg of cissus quadrangularis for 6 weeks, and saw an increase in serotonin of ~30% versus placebo23The effect of Cissus quadrangularis (CQR-300) and a Cissus formulation (CORE) on obesity and obesity-induced oxidative stress – Oben et al. (2007) | Lipids in Health and Disease.
The study was in the context of weight loss, and Andrew mentions that it should come as no surprise that an increase in serotonin can aid with weight loss.
^ Clip from podcast episode #80 – from 1hr 53m 30
Cissus Quadrangularis is a succulent plant from the grape family that is native to parts of Asia and Africa.
It’s used in traditional medicine for a variety of ailments.
Andrew mentions this supplement for interest, but doesn’t say that he takes it personally.
Brands selling cissus include:
- Double Wood – Cissus Quadrangularis – 500 mg per capsule
Whilst Andrew doesn’t take nicotine, and doesn’t recommend taking it, he has discussed it on multiple podcasts, so thought it worth a mention.
We’re all familiar with nicotine as the addictive chemical in cigarettes.
It’s also now available in other forms such as patches, vapes, gum and lozenges.
Andrew notes that Nicotine can aid with focus and concentraction.
With the effect due to it binding with the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, which then trigger downstream release of dopamine and norephiphrine neurotransmitters:
He also tells an anecdotal story about a Nobel Prize winning friend who chews large amounts of nicorette gum, believing it helps with his focus (see audio clip below).
Similarly, Andrew’s friend Peter Attia tells how he has used nicorette gum and lozenges off and on for 10 years to aid with focus and concentration:
^ Both clips are from Andrew’s interview with Peter Attia – link
Peter notes that whilst Nicotine is addictive, he doesn’t personally find it addictive and regularly takes effortless breaks.
He said that he got some slack when he did an “Ask Me Anything” podcast on Nicotine and disclosed that he uses it.
However, he feels that the risk from nicotine gum and lozenges is far less than prescription stimulants such as ritalin and adderall, which have become popular in the US.
He explains that cigarettes contain about 1mg of nicotine each, whereas many nicotine gums and lozenges contain 4 mg or more. Which are large doses for people unaccustomed to nicotine.
Anyone considering trying nicotine should keep in mind its addictive properties, and note that it does raise heart rate and blood pressure temporarily24Nicotine and sympathetic neurotransmission – Haass & Kübler | 1997 | Cardiovascular Drugs and Therapy Journal , important to know for people with high blood pressure or other cardiovascular issues.
Examples of reputable brands of lozenges include:
Supplements Andrew Avoids
Interestingly, Andrew avoids some popular sleep supplements, so I’ve summarized them below:
- Whilst Melatonin is one of the most popular sleep supplements on the market, Andrew personally avoids it.
- He explains this is due to its affects on sex steroid hormones – the pathways related to testosterone and estrogen, and not wanting to interfere with them.
- He discussed with sleep expert Matthew Walker how a recent meta-analysis, in healthy (not older age) adults showed melatonin only increases sleep time, by on average, 3.9 minutes, and efficiency by ~2%.
- In that discussion, Matthew suggests the most robust benefits are seen in the 60+ age range. Aging can cause calcification of the pineal gland, which decreases melatonin release – making supplementation more beneficial.
Andrew discusses these points with Matthew Walker from 1hr 36m of their podcast together (link).
^ Short clip on why Andrew avoids melatonin, see full interview here
5-HTP, Tryptophan & Serotonin
- Andrew personally finds that with 5-HTP, tryptophan (serotonin precursors), and serotonin itself, he falls asleep easily, has vivid dreams, then wakes up wide awake about 3 hours later.
- This then negatively affects his sleep for several days after.
^ Short clip on why Andrew avoids 5-HTP/Tryptophan, see full interview here
Tracking & Measuring His Health
Andrew explains that he tests his blood twice per year in order to track and monitor his health.
This helps him to monitor the effect supplements are having on him. For example when he added Tongkat Ali and Fadogia Agrestis to boost his testosterone, he already had a baseline reading from previous blood tests. He was then able to test himself after using the supplements, to measure how they had impacted his testosterone and other hormones.
One company he has specifically mentioned for blood tests are Inside Tracker – who are also a show sponsor of his podcast.
InsideTracker offer 2 main blood tests:
For 25% off their blood tests, use this discount code.
In this post I’ve aimed to cover some of the more interesting supplements Andrew talks about.
If there’s a supplement you think I’ve missed, and you’d like to see covered, let me know below in the comments.
If you found this post interesting, you may also like:
- Andrew Huberman’s Diet – What he eats and when – the formula that works for him
- Andrew Huberman’s Book Recommendations – 21 books he has read, enjoyed and recommends
- Andrew Huberman’s Sleep Supplements – focusing just on the supplements he has discussed to aid sleep onset and quality
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- 2Long-term HRV analysis shows stress reduction by magnesium intake – Nolden et al. | RCT, n=100 | 2016 | MMW – Fortschritte der Medizin
- 4L-theanine, a natural constituent in tea, and its effect on mental state – Owen et al. | 2008 |Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition
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- 10The causes of adverse changes of testosterone levels in men – Wrzosek et al. | 2020 | Expert Review of Endocrinology & Metabolism Journal
- 11Effect of Zinc on Testosterone Levels and Sexual Function of Postmenopausal Women: A Randomized Controlled Trial – Nia et al. | 2021 | Journal of Sex & Marital Therapy
- 12Association of L-α Glycerylphosphorylcholine With Subsequent Stroke Risk After 10 Years – Lee et al. (2021) JAMA Neurology
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- 16Blood docosahexaenoic acid and eicosapentaenoic acid in vegans: Associations with age and gender and effects of an algal-derived omega-3 fatty acid supplement – Sarter et al. | 2014 | Clinical Nutrition
- 17Blood docosahexaenoic acid and eicosapentaenoic acid in vegans: Associations with age and gender and effects of an algal-derived omega-3 fatty acid supplement – Sarter et al. | 2014 | Clinical Nutrition
- 18The Roles of Glutamine in the Intestine and Its Implication in Intestinal Diseases | Kim et al. | 2017 | International Journal of Molecular Sciences
- 19Why Is L-Glutamine Metabolism Important to Cells of the Immune System in Health, Postinjury, Surgery or Infection? | Newsholme | 2001 | The Journal of Nutrition
- 20The Possible Importance of Glutamine Supplementation to Mood and Cognition in Hypoxia from High Altitude | Quaresma et al. | 2020 | Nutrients Journal
- 21Vitamin D: A Micronutrient Regulating Genes – Carsten Carlberg | 2019 | Current Pharmaceutical Design
- 22A prospective, randomized double-blind, placebo-controlled study of safety and efficacy of a high-concentration full-spectrum extract of ashwagandha root in reducing stress and anxiety in adults – Chandrasekhar et al. | 2012 | Indian Journal of Psychological Medicine
- 23The effect of Cissus quadrangularis (CQR-300) and a Cissus formulation (CORE) on obesity and obesity-induced oxidative stress – Oben et al. (2007) | Lipids in Health and Disease
- 24Nicotine and sympathetic neurotransmission – Haass & Kübler | 1997 | Cardiovascular Drugs and Therapy Journal