CogniQ is a supplement that promises it will give you “the best brain of your life” by preventing illness and reversing mental decline. They tout their product is a revolutionary breakthrough from the natural world that will bring “fresh blood to your oxygen-starved” brain, “dust off” neurotransmitters, and turn your noggin into a lean, mean thinking machine.

 How CongniQ Pitches Their Product So That It’s So Tempting To Try…

The marketers of CogniQ are masters of the long-form pitch, an “art” that goes back to the Medicine Shows of the Old West, continued into television with the rise of the Informercial, and has now landed on the web in the form of ultra-long videos and web pages designed to take you on an emotional roller coaster ride, the end result being you clicking “buy.” 

First, they warn you that this information is being only given to a select few people and it may be cancelled at any time (this provides some urgency and gives you a sense of privilege). 

Then they go debunk a couple of “myths” about the brain: that decline can’t be reversed and the brain can’t heal itself. That’s when they introduce CogniQ, and promise it contains the secret of the ancient Rishis, who were known for their mathematical abilities and memory feats (spoiler alert: it’s Bacopa Monneri).

They then go through a long list of other ingredients (we’ll cover them all in a moment) and point to a few studies that seem to prove their effectiveness. This is followed by a long list of testimonials, a recap of the benefits, and… finally the BUY buttons (we counted 6) each with a more tempting offer or harder pitch.

Once you get to the checkout, you are greeted with a high-tech popup video of a woman who calls herself “Dr. Laura” (no relation to Dr. Laura Schlessinger) who says she is “thrilled for you” about your excellent decision…

Ok, So What is in CogniQ that Makes it so Great?

Here are the ingredients of CogniQ:

Bacopa Minnori (aka Bacopin) – They tout it as the secret of the Rishis’ ability to remember 9,000 page texts. While we couldn’t find any unbiased evidence that the Rishis used Bacopa to enhance their smarts, Bacopin does appear to have some promise in enhancing brain function. We found a review of research conducted on Bacopin by the Department of Neuroscience at Pitzer College that said it had “immense” potential, but it is “critical” more long-term studies be conducted.

CogniQ adds that Bacopa has been shown to increase production of GABA, which leads to better brain function. However, we can only find a study that showed GABA receptors may have something to do with epilepsy and Bacopa may help control it. 

Gingko Biloba – Another popular ingredient in many brain supplements, also with promise, but many experts feel it has not lived up to its hype. According to WebMD, some studies have shown that it helps healthy people modestly boost memory, and some have not. While it doesn’t seem to prevent dementia or Alzheimer’s it may lessen some of the effects; however, there are side effects such as thin blood, headaches, and nausea.

Vinpocetine – A synthetic compound said to increase blood flow and brain performance. WebMD says that there is insufficient evidence that it works as a memory enhancer or helps with dementia. Side effects include nausea, pain, headaches, and weakening the immune system in some people.

Acetyl-L-Carnitine – Also known as ALCAR, this is an amino acid that naturally occurs in the body. There is some evidence it is effective for memory problems in older people and alcohol abusers or helps with those that have a deficiency. There is some concern that it interacts with the thyroid and can give your urine a “fishy” smell amongst other side effects

Phosphatidylserine – An ingredient they state that even the FDA has concluded helps with dementia and cognitive dysfunction. However, we looked up the FDA’s position, which specifically states the scientific evidence is “very limited and preliminary” for these claims. 

Glutamine – One of the most abundant amino acids found in the body that they say is essential for the building of proteins. Taking glutamine has been shown to help AIDS/HIV patients with weight gain, as well as people with bowel infections, or recovering  from surgery. 

St. John’s Wort – One of the most popular natural supplements in the marketplace and the general medical consensus is that it does help with mild depression. However, there are interactions with other medications (like antidepressants) so it is advised to consult with your doctor before taking it.

DMAE Bitartrate – CongiQ states it increases membrane health, is a powerful antioxidant, and helps the brain make more acetylcholine. WebMD says it’s likely ineffective for Alzheimer’s disease and there is insufficient evidence for treating memory and mood. 

Conclusion: There is some evidence many of these ingredients are promising for brain health, but research is generally lacking and there have been no specific studies we could find on CogniQ itself. There are side effects that consumers should carefully study before taking CogniQ.

CogniQ Cost:

  • $199.80 for 4 bottles (the default order and said to be the “best deal.”)
  • $119.90 for 2 bottles
  • $69.95 for 1 bottle

CogniQ offers a 90-day money back guarantee plus $10 but the Terms and Conditions state:

  • 90 days is from the date you ordered CongiQ, not when you get it in the mail.
  • The product must also be received by them within 90 days or you may not qualify.

CogniQ’s privacy policy allows them to solicit you via email, telephone, snail mail, and even send you text messages. They may also give this information to third parties for contests, sweepstakes, marketing research or other promotions. You must unsubscribe from these offers individually. (If you want to stop the texts, you must text back STOP or call 800-287-9221.)

Bottom Line is CongiQ a Great Supplement that will Make Me a Genius or Reverse Mental Decline?

As we showed, there is some small, preliminary information that some of these ingredients may help your brain but they can also have some nasty side effects. In addition, you should consider:

ABC News did an investigation on smart drugs and found that most studies of these ingredients have been small and/or performed on lab rats with very little conclusive evidence. (CogniQ was not a part of this study.)

The New York attorney general conducted a DNA testing of popular supplements and found that many did not contain the ingredients listed on the label. 

Right now (June 2015) Deep Sea Nutrition has a C rating from the BBB due to 6 complaints in the last year, one of which was not resolved.  

Generally speaking, there is some evidence taking a brain supplement may help with brain function, but there is a SMART way to buy them, which we’ve outlined in this article. We strongly suggest reading it before you plunk down your hard earned cash on CogniQ or any other supplement!

Let us know your experience with CogniQ below!

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