If the word McCleary Scientific means anything to you, then you have probably heard of Lucidal. Lucidal is a brain enhancer formulated and developed by Dr. Larry McCleary, and is actually a pretty well-known memory enhancer in the industry. Lucidal claims to improve brain health and function, while warding off possible brain diseases that may develop with age.
We first heard of Lucidal when we received a few emails last year regarding it, but have not had the chance to review it until now. We’ve just been swamped with a lot of work recently, so on behalf of the whole team, I apologize that it took this long to publish.
There’s just something so different about having a front man in a supplement company that makes it feel so much more credible. We’re talking about Dr. McCleary, of course. We don’t know why not more other companies follow this example, as we were actually pleasantly confident and felt reassured when ordering from his website. That, of course, and the fact that he has a few other successful products out there as well!
Speaking of the website though, it was very pleasant to see a website that didn’t seem like it was trying so hard to sell to you. There weren’t a lot of over-sensationalized marketing hype, but instead, a lot of useful and tame information, as seen below. Their website has FAQs, clinical trials, and patents – all very useful reading material that reassures you that Dr. McCleary and the team with him know what they’re doing. There’s even a section dedicated to memory, so if you can spare a few minutes, we highly advise checking their website out as it really seems like it was put together with a lot of TLC.
If that isn’t enough, Dr. McCleary also has an eBook called the Brain Trust Program that you can buy. According to the website, it’s a “scientifically based three-part plan to improve memory, elevate mood, enhance attention, alleviate migraine and menopausal symptoms, and boost mental energy.”
“Lucidal improves the function of many of the brain pathways that deteriorate as we age.”
“Clinically shown to enhance brain health.”
“By markedly improving memory, Lucidal allows us to think faster.”
To our dismay, while we did find a lot of information on Lucidal’s site, what we didn’t find was a supplement facts label. Fortunately though, a quick Google Images search returned one to us at getlucidal.com (not to be confused with the official site).
Full Ingredients List:
- Vitamin C – 75 mg
- Vitamin D3 – 100 IU
- Vitamin E – 15 IU
- Thiamin – 20 mg
- Riboflavin – 20 mg
- Niacin – 25 mg
- Vitamin B6 – 50 mg
- Folate – 800 mcg
- Vitamin B12 – 125 mcg
- Biotin – 300 mcg
- Pantothenic acid – 25 mg
- Magnesium – 80 mg
- Zinc – 15 mg
- Selenium – 200 mcg
- Chromium – 400 mcg
- Potassium – 9 mg
Proprietary Carotenoid Mixture 9mg
Beta Carotene, Alpha Carotene, Lutein, Zeaxanthin, Cryptoxanthin
Proprietary LUCIDAL Mixture 820mg
Creatine, L-Glutamine, L-Pyrogutamic Acid, Inositol, Alpha-Ketoglutaric Acid, Glucosamine HCl, L-F Glutamine, L-Pyroglutamic Acid, Inositol, Alpha-Ketoglutaric Acid, Soy Bean Oil Poweder,Taurine, Trimethylglycine, Ginkgo Biloba, Green Tea Extract, Soy Isoflavones, Acetyl-L-Carnitine, Alpha Lipoic Acid, N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine, PABA, Vinpocetine, Bilberry, Grape Seed Extract, Maritime Pine Bark Extract, Coenzyme Q10, Lycopene, Reservatrol, Huperzine A, and Vanadium
As you can see, Lucidal has a pretty long list of ingredients. It might just have every single ingredient you’ll find in a brain supplement today. While more ingredients might seem like a good idea though, that is not always the case. More ingredients simply mean one of the following:
a) Less dosages available per ingredient
b) More pills needed to be taken per day
Both of these, of course, are negatives. They may have made a better choice by having less ingredients with a slightly more potent formula. Of course, that’s just our opinion, but we can’t really argue with a board certified neurosurgeon.
In this case though, it’s remarkable that they were able to fit all of that into a serving size of just three capsules a day.
What makes Lucidal really unique is that out of many of our other reviewed products, it’s actually one of the few that was actually formulated specifically with memory in mind. Most of our other reviewed supplements are general cognitive enhancers or nootropics.
Speaking of the formula, there is a lot of good in it. For one, it contains a whole lot of vitamins, nutrients, and minerals that support brain health. So many multivitamins actually, that it is even stated on their website that it can serve as either a replacement or an enhancement to your daily multi-vitamin. While we don’t believe this to be a bad idea at all, we do have a minor gripe with this idea: most people already take daily multivitamins because they’re relatively inexpensive. The fact that we’re paying a high price of $75 for a month’s supply of a memory enhancer that is 25% multivitamin, when that 25% could be better used for more of the good stuff… well, it just seems like they’re cutting corners.
While we can’t examine all the ingredients in Lucidal’s proprietary blend, here are the most noteworthy ones: Ginkgo Biloba, Acetyl L-Carnitine, Zinc, Choline, Vinpocetine, Huperzine A. All these ingredients have a direct effect on the neural pathways, as well as the production of acetylcholine, and neural connectivity in the brain. This is the good stuff. If they would have gotten rid of a big chunk of the multivitamins and some of the other ‘filler’ ingredients and just put in heftier doses of each of these ingredients, we’d all be a little happier. We believe Lucidal’s formula is great, but had just missed the mark.
Test Results: Lucidal
Our tests with Lucidal lasted for a whole 45 days. We had a few volunteers come in to our lab (aged 20-44) who agreed to take Lucidal continuously and write down their findings in a journal. They also had to come report back with our lab every two weeks for general cognitive performance tests.
Our time testing Lucidal was remarkable. From the very beginning, it already showed great promise. Its effects on short-term and long-term memory were evident in as little as three weeks of continued use. Our volunteers were quick to point out the positive effects they’ve been experiencing. Some said that remembering things like phone numbers and names became a lot easier, and in more other settings, a few of our college student volunteers attested being able to remember more come exam time. It wasn’t just remembering that became easy though… our volunteers noted that they stopped forgetting small things as much… the things you normally forget in normal day-to-day life.
Lucidal just kept exceeding our expectations, and we believe it to be a true success. It’s not the most well-rounded brain enhancer out there, but as a memory enhancer that improves other aspects as well, Lucidal easily becomes one of our favorite picks.
Other Online Reviews
While we weren’t able to find a lot of Amazon reviews on Lucidal, there were still a lot of opinions and testimonials scattered all over the web. Most of the reviews on Lucidal were mainly positive though, but the few negative reviews all focused on one thing: Lucidal’s high price.
From Gina on June 6, 2011 (Amazon)
I have had several sports related concussions and have had a lot of trouble with memory, focus, etc…go figure. When I first discovered it, I took lucidal for about a year and felt the best I have felt since the last concussion. Not certain whether I was just doing better or whether it was the Lucidal, I didn’t renew it when I ran out. And then (no joke intended) I forgot all about it. Last month my mom asked if I was still taking it–and I realized that not only had I been off of it for about a year, but that I was also getting MRI’s on my brain, in seeing the neurologist again, being prescribed drugs to cope with my side-effects of the injuries, etc., as I was on a downward spiral with my noggin’. I found Lucidal on Amazon for half the price of their website and decided to give it a go…still not sure whether I had started to decline without it or whether I was just declining regardless. After about a month, I feel more calm, more focused than before, in short, that I’m doing a bit better. I hope to be much better after taking them for about 6 months. I just checked in here at Amazon to buy more at half the price and was surprised to see it had a bad review. however, I have to say that my sister didn’t really care for them either–she felt that they made her more anxious than less. So my conclusion is that perhaps it is for people who have a history of head trauma or extreme stress, etc. I will personally be taking them as long as they sell them.
Critic Review (brainpower.org)
Lucidal’s clinical trial demonstrates that the formulation has a positive impact on people. We believe that this is not because Lucidal itself is particularly fantastic – in fact, it is rather common. Rather, the clinical trials demonstrate that brain support supplements can have a positive impact on individuals within three months.
We believe there are many better products on the brain support market than Lucidal. Instead of investing in this glorified multivitamin, we recommend keeping your vitamins and antioxidants separate.
From Angela Harper (Brain Opinions)
Lucidal is an overpriced multivitamin. There are hundreds of other supplements out there that give the same if not better results and are much cheaper.
From Julian (Brain Research Supplement)
This supplement is too expensive for me but I wanted to try it out. I did feel better but not enough to keep buying it.
Other communities from Reddit, as well as Nootropic forums on Facebook also rate Lucidal positively.
Lucidal differentiates itself in that it does not produce any side effects. In the whole 45 days of testing, none of our volunteers complained about any unwanted or negative side effects. In fact, most even commented on a certain feeling of general wellbeing. We believe this may be due to the number of multivitamins and nutrients also included in Lucidal’s formula. You aren’t going to feel bad with a formula like that!
There have been a few reports, however, of Lucidal causing nausea and headaches. If you experience any adverse side effects, please discontinue use immediately.
A 90-count bottle of Lucidal runs for $74.99 and should last for thirty days under the suggested three capsules a day recommended serving. They don’t really have any other pricing options. They do, however, also offer an Omega-3 booster for $29.99, as well as an Audio Guide to Brain Health for $19.99 if you would be interested in hearing more about memory and brain health from Dr. McCleary.
In our opinion, it is a little expensive, which isn’t really that justifiable considering the big chunk of the whole formula being dedicated to just multivitamins, which are relatively inexpensive. We believe this extra real estate could have been put to better use… and the price is just a little too much. Most other nootropics and similar memory enhancers go for around $50-$60, so the $75 price point is a little high – without even considering the fact that you’re paying for a supplement that is 25% multivitamin.
Luckily, Lucidal does have a guarantee on unopened bottles, so in case you ordered more than one and aren’t satisfied with the results, you can still return your bottles for your money.
RECAP: Pro’s vs Con’s
– One of the few supplements we’ve reviewed that actually directly targets memory
– Also has minor positive effects to mood, stress levels, and problem solving ability
– Actually developed and formulated by a neuro surgeon (Dr. McCleary)
– Lots of further information on memory and brain health available for free and for sale on their website
– Not as well-rounded as other brain enhancers (Other supplements can boost memory, as well as focus, concentration, and energy – which is arguably a better deal)
– Formula is 25% multivitamin and nutrients (extra real estate could have been put to better use)
– Pretty expensive at $74.99 per month
The Bottom Line
Perhaps the reason why Lucidal works so well lies in the fact that it was developed by an actual brain surgeon. Dr. McCleary must know something that no one else does, because he has developed one of the best memory enhancers we’ve ever tested. We just can’t say it’s the best though. While we and our volunteers loved Lucidal, there is still much room for improvement. For one, while we understand that Lucidal tries to replace your mulitvitamins, we believe its formula could be so much more potent and effective if the multivitamins were traded out for heftier dosages of the good stuff. The ingredients are of high quality, and it is definitely a well-developed product… we just feel like there have been a few corners cut in production that is holding Lucidal back slightly.
We believe though that with some slight reformulation, and perhaps a lower price ($74.99 is a bit too much!), Lucidal could become what it should have been in the first place.
If you’re looking for a more well-rounded brain enhancer or one that works more towards your focus and energy, you might not find it in Lucidal. But if you’re looking for one of the few brain supplements out there that might help you remember the 20th digit of Pi, the name of the girl you just met at the bar, and the answer to questions in the most crucial of times, Lucidal is definitely for you.