It’s now also LCR Health’s Active stem.
As far as we could tell the company is exactly the same, no matter what it’s called. And if we knew how much of which ingredient went into either product’s “proprietary blend” we’d be able to confirm whether Vital Stem and Active Stem were one and the same as well.
From here, judging from all the other clues, it certainly looks that way.
We’re told Vital Stem (or Active Stem) “boosts proliferation of adult stem cells, the ‘master cells’ of your body that repair damage to your muscles, skin, organs and brain” – which sounds great in theory.
There are two different types of stem cells. One type – commonly referred to as “embryonic” – can become any type of cell anywhere in the body.
However, the same doesn’t apply for the other type of stem cell – the “adult” cell, which can only grow into their original tissue type.
So we just have to hope Active (or Vital) Stem’s new adult cells are growing just where they’re needed – and nowhere else. If they’re growing at all.
The main ingredients of Vital/Active Stem are naturally occurring nutrients, but because the formula is proprietary we’re not sure how much of each of them each serving contains.
In general, though, too much of these ingredients can bring on anything from digestive problems … to depression … to sleep problems … to confusion and nervousness. In addition, there’s always the possibility of problems with breathing, the liver and the kidneys.
Vital Stem is available at three different package levels, including:
And this is what we read on the website:
How many jars should you order? The average order for new customers is 3 jars and that’s what we recommend to start. But we do have many repeat customers, so you can enjoy our best pricing on the 6 jar package.
And the same goes for Active Stem. Of course.
Well, we’re certainly less than impressed by the technical explanation of how this product works, as in this, quoted in its entirety from the website:
“HOW ACTIVE STEM™ WORKS New research shows certain natural ingredients can boost adult stem cell proliferation. Active Stem harnesses these rare ingredients to promote both mental and physical health.”
So that’s how it works, eh?
OK, so we’re not the most technical of people, but let’s face it, that wasn’t the most technical of explanations either.
We’re also not so keen on the 1200 mg of Vital/Active Stem’s proprietary “Stem Cell Enhancing Blend”, since we don’t know how much of any of its ingredients is in that blend – but we do know that we need much more than just 1200 mg of Leucine for it to have any effect: the recommended dose is 8 or more grams a day.
The studies supporting the benefits of Vital/Active Stem leave a little to be desired, too: a Finnish study looked at Leucine with reference to test subjects doing “exhaustive aerobic exercise” and “intensive training”, as no doubt so many frail and elderly Vital/Active Stem users do on a regular basis.
L-Carnosine, according to an Australian study, can extend the life of cultured human cells in a Petri dish. And combining L-Carnosine and blueberry extract has “resulted in an 83% increase in adult stem cell proliferation in vitro” – but not, as yet, in humans.
When those lab results have been duplicated – safely – in humans, then we’ll be much more impressed with Vital/Active Stem, but until then we’re going to have to be cautious and reject it.
Containing ingredients that have been clinically tested and boasting a 30-day money-back guarantee, OmniMind is quickly rising to the top of the nootropic world.
Find out why people are choosing OmniMind to achieve advanced brain performance, and why it's our editor's top pick.
Read the Nootropic Watchdog OmniMind review here.
Vital/Active Stem’s most credible ingredient just happens to be a dose of Vitamin D – at 500% the daily recommended dosage, which may sound like a lot, but is far less than the amount you’d have to ingest every day for three months for it to cause any health problems.
L-Carnosine and L-Leucine haven’t actually been proved to provide much in the way of beneficial effects within the body when it comes to stem cells. Some studies suggest L-Leucine may be effective for improving cognition and healing damaged muscles, and it seems L-Carnosine doesn’t do anything much once in the human body anyway – at least in dosages of less than 8 grams a day.
From the website: “Simply mix one scoop of Vital Stem with a 16 oz glass of water, and drink once a day. Vital Stem dissolves quickly and has a refreshing berry taste.
Drink once per day first thing in the morning, ideally on an empty stomach. The ingredients in Vital Stem are fully bioavailable, and once absorbed in your stomach will go to work boosting your cellular health all day.
And as for those name changes? Still a mystery to us.
This from the Vital Stem website: “One of the amazing things about Vital Stem is it can work for anybody. This incredible formula is unique because the ingredients have been shown to boost human adult stem cells, which naturally get depleted as you age. So especially if you have experienced fatigue, “brain fog”, a loss of physical energy, and difficulty engaging in the activities you loved when you were younger … then you may benefit from Vital Stem.
Well, Vitamin D is good for you, especially since the Vitamin D in Vital/Active Stem is Vitamin D3, which is natural, rather than D2 – which isn’t.
However, Vital/Active Stem also contains a proprietary blend of ingredients, and as for those, yes, they have been shown to have some kind of effect, but since we don’t know what kind of quantities are involved it’s hard to say how much of an effect they have.
Some studies state that L-Leucine may be able to heal muscle damage and improve cognition. As for it boosting adult stem cell production, though, the jury’s still out.
Green tea contains epigallocatechin gallate, which good for brain health, heart health and weight loss.
So far, L-Carnosine hasn’t been conclusively proven to have any benefits in human trials so far.
And who’s to say whether that blueberry was added for health benefits or to make Vital/Active Stem just that little bit tastier?
So we’re going to sit very firmly on the fence here and say some of the ingredients have been shown to work, others haven’t … and we’re not too sure about them doing what they’re supposed to do when they’re all mixed together.
Each container provides 30 single-scoop, 10-calorie servings.
Total carbohydrate in each serving is 1 gram, fewer than 1% Daily Value.
1200 mg Proprietary Blend:
L-Leucine – an amino acid which stimulates protein synthesis in muscle … but in the recommended dose of 8 or more grams a day.
Blueberry Fruit – depending on dosage, they’re an excellent antioxidant, good for the heart and brain, and can help to reduce muscle damage after strenuous exercise.
Green Tea Leaf Extract – its caffeine content improves thinking and alertness.
L-Carnosine – naturally produced in the body, it prevents aging by interfering with certain chemicals that could play a role in the aging process.
Vital/Active Stem does not contain:
Vital/Active Stem is packaged in a BPA-free container, resistant to light, heat and air.
Again, because we don’t know how much of each ingredient Vital/Active Stem contains, we can’t be certain whether it does or doesn’t have any side effects.
L-Leucine can lower blood sugar levels, which can lead to tremors, dizziness and even loss of consciousness, coma and death. Depression, breathing problems and issues with liver and kidney functions have also been noted.
Blueberry Fruit can also lower blood sugar – especially in the case of diabetics.
Green Tea Leaf Extract can raise blood pressure, cause digestive upset and, because of the caffeine, can induce restlessness.
L-Carnosine can lower blood pressure.
There’s no caution notice anywhere that we’ve managed to find – whether for Vital or Active Stem.
Customer reviews? But of course – especially on the Vital Stem sales page – why, heavens, there’s even one that says, quote: “Plus, I’ve noticed some new hair growth on the bald spot on top of my head, and others are also noticing and making comments about my hair now, too…” – and that’s pretty good for a general all-purpose anti-aging formula.
However, such enthusiasm is to be expected on any website that sells a product, so we looked elsewhere to see if other reviews were equally positive.
eBay and Amazon had no reviews for the product – whatever it’s called – but other review sites had complaints about the taste (more about the Stevia than anything else) … the effects on users’ digestion.
I was so sick to my stomach that all I could do was sit very still.
I took the Vital Stem with one of their recommended products, Niagen, for 3 weeks. I actually became noticeably less cognitive. I struggled to use common words such as; fax, son, email, home. My spelling suffered as well. I am a 40 y/o, athletically active and usually intelligent person. I play daily brain games and my scores started suffering as well. I emailed in hopes for an intelligent answer with no reply. I called and have since returned the items with no problem.
Fortunately, the answer is a definite “yes”. Here’s what the Vital Stem sales page says:
At Live Cell Research, we take great pride in our products. We use only the best ingredients. We proudly keep all of our manufacturing and customer service in Southern California. We maintain the highest manufacturing standards in the industry, exceeding cGMP guidelines. As such, all of our products come with a 90-day money-back guarantee. You can return your order for any reason. We will gladly refund your money, no questions asked.
You can buy Vital/Active Stem from their respective websites, but if the way the company – whether you know it as Live Cell Research or LCR Health – operate their Facebook marketing campaign in the same way they do for at least one other product we’ve looked into, be careful. You might – like at least one other person leaving a less than flattering review – just find yourself being subtly talked into buying another of their products product to supposedly boost the effect.