NutriSleep is a prop blend-based supplement. While that might seem like a rather insignificant detail, it is everything but. In fact, it warrants the addition of a massive “parentheses,” before we even properly begin this review.
What exactly is a prop blend?
If you are versed in the ways of the supplement industry to any degree, you already know the answer to this question and you also know that it is not a favorable one.
The “prop blend” phenomenon is wide-spread in the realm of weight loss solutions, various muscle formulas and nootropics (interestingly, NutriSleep is sort of sold on the nootropic angle as well). Often, the term “prop blend” is embellished with a couple of catchy words, such as “muscle performance blend.” In NutriSleep’s case, we’re looking at “sleep formula proprietary blend” or even “sleepy time formula blend.”
The FDA – according to the laws governing the production/sale of dietary supplements – requires that all ingredients be listed, together with the exact amounts featured in the supplement. This requirement is not compulsory though when the producer uses a prop blend. The ingredients do have to be listed in this case too, but their exact amounts don’t.
Consumers/supplement buyers are led to assume that the prop blend setup is used by supplement makers to hide their secret recipes from their competitors (and this is indeed the angle NutriSleep attempts to exploit as well). That does not make much sense though…
Any one of the competitors can easily just purchase a product and have it tested, to figure out the exact composition of the “secret” formula.
The real reason why producers resort to this “prop blend” approach is to reduce their production costs, at the direct expense of the consumer, who no longer gets what he/she pays for. In a prop blend, an ingredient that is allegedly there, may only be present in trace amounts – it still fulfills the FDA’s requirements.
The bottom line in this regard is that prop blends are always bad news and those who know their supplements, always steer well clear of them.
That said, let us take a look at what NutriSleep really is/purports to be.
The best way to describe NutriSleep is that it is halfway between a sleep-aid and a nootropic.
As such, it is allegedly great for supporting a proper sleep cycle, it promotes increased mental focus and it helps with stress management. Also, through the promotion of healthy sleep patterns, it ends up increasing one’s overall energy during the day.
It goes without saying that if it truly addresses the issue of quality sleep, it is – at least theoretically – also good against various problems stemming from sleep deprivation, such as weight gain, the decline of cognitive abilities, depression, high blood pressure, high levels of bad cholesterol and high blood sugar.
NutriSleep is a herbal blend, made up of ingredients such as Chamomile, Valerian Root, melatonin and L-Tryptophan – among others – which all elicit a positive effect on sleep, one way or the other.
According to the NutriSleep website, the formula is the result of a “Goldilocks” sort of approach, containing the right ingredient amounts. Ironically, this is exactly the type of statement that can never possibly be verified, on account of the prop blend-based nature of the concoction.
The sales copy and the entire promotional effort behind the product, focuses on the “science” that supports the validity of the above claims. At one point, this focus on the science behind the formula is touted as one of the major advantages of NutriSleep over its competitors.
With that in mind, it is certainly worth taking a close look at the ingredient profile of the supplement.
It is important to point out that NutriSleep is apparently available in two variants. On its official page, it is simply called NutriSleep. At Amazon, it can be bought as NutriSleep RX. There does not seem to be any kind of a difference between the two ingredients-wise though.
What we know for certain about NutriSleep is that it fulfills some 90% of one’s daily vitamin B6 needs. Vitamin B6 deficiency has indeed been linked to psychological distress, so making sure one gets enough of this vitamin is one way to promote sleep (as well as improve dream recall).
Obviously though, there are cheaper vitamin B6 supplements available out there, so – solely for this need – NutriSleep may not be the best option.
The bulk of a NutriSleep serving (made up of two capsules), is constituted by some 45 mg of Calcium Carbonate and 90 mg of Magnesium Citrate.
These two ingredients are obviously targeting insomnia as well. Magnesium deficiency is known as one of the main causes of chronic insomnia, thus doing away with it makes perfect sense in this regard.
Calcium Carbonate is meant to help with the production of melatonin – yet another sleep-promoting compound. Considering that a single pistachio nut contains an impressive amount of melatonin, Calcium may not be the best choice towards its stimulation. That said, Calcium Carbonate certainly has its place in any sleep-promoting supplement.
Considering the above three compounds, it is safe to say that based on them solely – despite their utility – NutriSleep can hardly be considered a unique- or a breakthrough solution.
That is not where the alleged strength of NutriSleep resides though, but rather in the murky depths of the 1,071 mg worth of prop blend, purportedly made up of an impressive number of plant extracts.
Ashwagandha, an Indian plant, contains triethylene glycol, an important sleep-inducing compound. According to scientific studies conducted on mice, some 10-30 mg of triethylene glycol resulted in increased non-REM sleep in a dose-dependent manner. Considering the body-weight of a mouse in relation to that of an average human, it is safe to assume that NutriSleep’s prop blend would probably not contain enough of this compound to elicit an effect, even if it were wholly made up of it.
Valerian Root is known as a remedy for insomnia, though scientific evidence supporting this effect of the herb is insufficient and contradictory even. Even assuming that it is a proven promoter of sleep, its under-dosed nature in NutriSleep renders it pretty much useless.
By now, it is clear that pretty much every single alleged component of the NutriSleep prop blend is woefully under-dosed.
What is attempted here, is the listing of as many natural compounds/plant extracts with (more or less) proven effects on sleep as possible. Pubmed documentation is provided for all these compounds too, in an obvious attempt to draw attention away from the dosage related issues.
The other ingredients are hops, goji, lemon balm, passion fruit, chamomile, skullcap and St. John’s Wort: all of them known for their sleep-promoting effects and all of them under-dosed.
Ingredients-wise, it is safe to conclude that the maker of NutriSleep has tried to cram too many ingredients into too small a serving-size to make any kind of an impact. Again, it bears repeating though that given the involvement of a prop blend here, some of the listed ingredients may not even be present beyond some trace amounts, so the actual dosage situation may be even worse than the above depicted one.
How Much Does NutriSleep Cost?
A single bottle of NutriSleep will set the buyer back some $69 – which is not exactly cheap, considering the above-said.
Those who buy 3 bottles, will get each bottle for $59.
The best value package is the 6-bottle one, which features a rock-bottom cost of $49 per bottle. Over at Amazon, the product is currently unavailable.
What’s interesting about NutriSleep is that there is almost no relevant user feedback available on it. That means that sites like Amazon (where – as said above – the product is currently unavailable), do not feature any feedback from buyers.
There is some “feedback” available at the official site, in the form of the usual testimonials. The legitimacy of this is – as shown below – highly questionable.
The NutriSleep Website
There is nothing particularly out-of-line with the NutriSleep website – the focus of the marketing efforts pushing the product.
That said, there is nothing particularly convincing about it either. The person who acts as the face of the NutriSleep brand, a certain Cody Bramlett, who seems to have lent his face to several other “interesting” products, doesn’t exactly help the cause when he effectively peddles NutriSleep under a different brand too, noting that the label on the bottle does not make a difference.
Indeed, that tends to be the case with prop blend-based products in general.
The sales pitch is pretty much the expected one: the site tries to sell NutriSleep on the “science” angle, which we discussed above.
The credibility of the testimonials featured towards the bottom of the homepage is – as said above – highly questionable.
For the first one – allegedly posted by a certain Shelly Booker – the royalty free stock picture of a “middle aged woman” is used.
NutriSleep Review Conclusion
The bottom line is that NutriSleep does not really make a convincing case – and indeed: one cannot realistically have such expectations towards a prop blend-based product, at the end of the day..
Those familiar with the ways of the supplement industry know that the very concept of a “prop blend” is a stigma quite impossible to clear on the credibility front. Add to that the fact that the NutriSleep pitch bleeds from a number of other wounds as well, and the picture you get is not a pretty one.
It would be truly interesting to read some actual user reviews of the product.