Reviews

Team Six Supplements Epicenter: An Evidence-Based Review

Epicenter is a natural Muscle Builder by Team 6 Supplements which features Epicatechin as one of the primary ingredients (hence the prefix “Epi” in the name)…

Team Six Supplements Epicenter

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Claims

Team Six Supplements, the makers of Epicenter, claim the supplement will:

  • Support Healthy Testosterone Levels
  • Increase Muscle Mass
  • Increase The Amount Of Fat You Burn

So let’s take a closer look at the ingredients contain within in order to determine whether or not Epicenter has what it takes to make good on these claims…

Epicenter Ingredients

Unlike most “natural test-boosters”, Epicenter actually contains some muscle-building ingrediets that have nothing to do with Testosterone.  Since most natural Testosterone-boosting ingredients are actually pretty ineffective as muscle-builders (because they don’t elevate your test enough to upregulate muscle protein synthesis), the use of non-hormonal muscle-building ingredients like Epicatechin and 5-Hydroxylaxogenin gives Epicenter the upper hand.

Epicatechin

Epicatechin is a compound found in–and isolated from–Green Tea which has shown to some promise as a myostatin inhibitor.  Myostatin is a myokine (signaling protein released by muscle fibers) which suppresses muscle growth. The opposite of Myostatin is Follistatin, a signaling protein which induces muscle growth by blocking Myostatin.

A 2014 study, published in “The Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry”, found that 7 days of Epicatechin supplementation (150mg daily) was able to favorably influence the Follistatin/Myostatin ratio and subjects showed a 7% in hand grip strength.

In terms of research we don’t have much more to go on here, as this is the only study which has specifically investigated Epicatechin’s ability to inhibit Myostatin and increase muscle growth.  That said, the results are pretty encouraging so we may very well be dealing with a non-hormonal muscle builder that actaully works, atleast to some degree.

Ashwagandha (KSM-66)

Ashwagandha is one of the most widely studied adaptogenic (helps body adapt to stress) herbs on the planet.  It’s use dates back to before there was written records and it is alleged to have a wide range of health applications, mostly relating to the fact that it can reduce stress (both physical indications and mental perception).

We discuss the anti-stress benefits of Ashwagandha in this article, but in the context of Epicenter, Team Six Supplements is likely concerned with preliminary research which indicates Ashwagandha can increase Testosterone slightly, but enough to elicit muscle and strength gains.

Further research has confirmed that Ashwagandha (KSM-66) can restore sex hormone levels and sperm count in instances of infertility, adding to the notion that it is indeed an effective natural Testosterone boosting agent.

Epicenter contains a standardized, reliable form of Ashwagandha known as KSM-66.  We generally recommend either KSM-66 or Sensoril, as the liklihood that a non-brand name Ashwagandha containing the same level of active components is low.  This is one of those situations where you should go with the brand name.

5a-Hydroxylaxogenin

Laxogenin is a plant steroid which has been shown to promote anabolic activity similar to that of Anavar, a widely used muscle-building substance.  Research indicates that Laxogenin increases Nitrogen retention which results in more protein synthesis, the same basic mechanism underlying many steroid compounds. More protein synthesis results in greater muscle gains over time.

Unlike Anavar, Laxogenin does not alter hormonal status (i.e. messing with your Testosterone/Estrogen levels) and is not liver toxic like most prohormones.  This makes it of interest to not just men looking for something that isn’t too hardcore but also to women looking to gain muscle without interfering with their hormones.

Team Six Supplements lists the amount of 5a-Hydroxylaxogenin in Epicenter at 30mg, a pretty standard dose.

Eurycoma Longifolia

Eurycoma Longifolia, also known as Longjack, is generally used as a natural (herbal) testosterone booster and general vitality agent.  Its extensive history of use in traditonal medicine has led to its scientific study so there is actually a fair amount of data upon which to draw conclusions when it comes to its ability to boost Test.

In instances of initially low Testosterone, Longjack supplementation has been shown to have a restorative effect.  Currently, there are no studies which indicate Longjack is effective for increasing Testosterone beyond the normal, healthy range, so as a muscle-builder it’s probably not too effective.  In fact, one study using healthy human subjects found no influence on Testosterone.

Epicenter contains a pretty standard 100mg dose of Longjack in each serving.  The most we usually see is 200mg.

Diindolylmethane (DIM)

Diindolylmethane (DIM) is a byproduct created during the digestion of Indole-3-Carbinol, a compound found in vegetables such as Broccoli.

A 2011 pilot study found that, when given to human subjects at a dose of 300mg daily for 14 days, DIM produced anti-estrogenic effects.

Under different circumstances, however, DIM has shown the opposite, meaning it actually has the capacity to increase Estrogen.

How is this possible? Well, it’s important to understand that the word “Estrogen” is actually an umbrella term which encompasses several different compounds. Some of these compounds tend to induce more “Estrogenic” effects than others, even though they are all considered “Estrogens”.

DIM appears to increase the level of 2-hydroxyestrogens (“weak Estrogen”), relative to the other types, 16a-hydroxyestrogens and 4-hydroxyestrogens (“strong Estrogens”), the result of which is less of an “estrogen-like” effect, even though total Estrogen (strong and weak) may technically be staying the same.

Epicenter contains a pretty standard 150mg dose of DIM, about what you’ll find in most herbal test-boosters.

Ingredient Takeaway

Epicenter contains a few ingredients which can potentially increase muscle mass through non-hormonal means (not by boosting Testosterone) as well as some herbal ingredints which may encourage elevated Testosterone levels.  This makes for an interesting and unique formula which may accelerate muscle growth as well as enhance libido, but these effects would be attributed to different ingredients.

In a sense, this is what most “natural” test-booster claim to be but the difference between Epicenter and the rest of the so-called “natural test-boosters” is that Epicenter might actaully help you build muscle, rather than just “feel” like you have higher Testosterone.

Is Epicenter Safe?

There is nothing in Epicenter that hasn’t been used extensively throughout the supplement industry at this point and most of the ingredients have had their safety profiles examined in clinical settings and have been deemed safe.  Nothing to worry about here.

Where To Buy Epicenter

Team Six Supplements doesn’t appear to be doing too much business with outside retailers but you can find Epicenter at:

Amazon

The Bottom Line

It’s important to understand that Epicenter won’t increase your Testosterone to the point where muscle protein synthesis is accelerated, but it may still increase muscle growth through alternate mechanisms.  If you’re looking for something a little less hardcore than a prohormone (see Best Muscle Builders List) that will still contribute to muscle and strength gains, Epicenter may actually be worth considering.

On the other hand, if you’re looking for something that’ll shoot your Testosterone through the roof and induce serious muscle gains in a relatively short period of time, see our Best Muscle Builders List for some recommendations.

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