In case you’re not aware, or are new to bodybuilding, testosterone is pretty much the most important hormone when it comes to building muscle and maintaining your ‘manly wiles’ as you age.
It’s a hormone that exists in all humans, and in men it is vital in managing sex drive, sperm health, muscle mass, red blood cell production and the processing of dietary fats.
Basically, it’s the hormone governing all things ‘manly’.
Assuming you’re a male, the amount of testosterone in your body decreases with age, starting as young as 30. Slowing down or reversing this process has become like the Philosopher’s Stone of bodybuilding.
It is something that many supplement companies have tried. Some have failed miserably. Plenty of others have come close though, and a lot of the products available now will have at least some positive effect.
So, where does Manpower, the T-booster from Axe & Sledge, sit on this spectrum?
Read on to find out…
About Axe and Sledge Manpower
Touted as a natural testosterone booster, Manpower is aimed squarely at the older gentleman athlete.
The company behind Manpower is called Axe & Sledge. Their range of products includes protein and pre-workouts.
They claim Manpower is the ideal supplement for;
- Enhancing lean muscle mass
- Increasing strength and power
- Boosting endurance and stamina
- Enhancing libido
With a name like Manpower, you would hope this is the case, wouldn’t you?!
It’s important to note that Manpower is also a natural supplement. In supplement terms, natural is the term given to anything that comes out of the ground, grows on a plant or can be synthesized by the human body. Which covers almost everything that isn’t cooked up in a petri dish somewhere.
There are plenty of natural ingredients that can increase testosterone, and Axe & Sledge seem to have done their homework when selecting the components for Manpower. Let’s find out if it really is as ‘ideal’ as they say.
Axe and Sledge Manpower – Supplement Facts
Directions for Use
Take three capsules with 8-10oz water before breakfast (or your first meal of the day). You can also take an additional capsule 6-8 hours later if needed.
Axe and Sledge Manpower Ingredients
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Tribulus Terrestris 500mg
OK, we’re not off to the best start here. There is really no good way to say this, so we’ll just come right out and say it.
If you want to increase your testosterone levels, Tribulus Terrestris is NOT going to help.
This is an ingredient common in many T-boosters, not just Manpower, but its application for increasing testosterone is not supported by evidence from human studies.
One major study conducted a few years ago examined the results from multiple previous studies and concluded that there was no link.
So, it’s a total dud? Not exactly. It’s not like it does nothing. There is a proven link between Tribulus Terrestris (TT) and libido, and it has been used effectively to treat erectile disfunction. The mechanism of TT is not clear, but it may be related to your nitric oxide levels.
Whatever way it works, we know that it does indeed work. But it doesn’t work on your testosterone. It will only affect your libido, providing no benefit to testosterone or athletic performance.
Mucuna Pruriens 500mg
Now here’s something that will increase your testosterone levels. Mucuna Pruriens has been shown to increase levels of testosterone and luteinizing hormone (LH – which signals T production).
It’s an African legume that contains L-DOPA. L-DOPA is an amino acid that your body produces from l-tyrosine. We don’t fully understand how or why Mucuna Pruriens, or L-DOPA, affect testosterone, but the evidence that they do is pretty solid.
We know L-DOPA helps to produce dopamine and other natural feel-good chemicals, so it’s definitely going to put a spring in your step. In fact, L-DOPA increases testosterone, LH, dopamine, adrenaline and noradrenaline – quite the combination! This will leave you feeling amped up, buzzed and full of energy. 500mg is spot on as far as doses go, too.
While we’re on the subject of things that definitely increase testosterone, here comes Fenugreek. If we had to choose just one herb to take to a desert island gym with us, it might just be Fenugreek. It does pretty much everything you want a male health supplement to do.
It does increase free testosterone, in some cases by up to 46%, and it has been proven to have a huge impact on strength and power output. Fenugreek is also beneficial in managing blood sugar and cholesterol.
A 300mg dose is a little light, but fine in the context of the overall formula.
Safed Musli Extract 250mg
This white herb hails from India and has started popping up in T-boosters a lot recently. In fact, it’s become so popular that in some parts of the world it is becoming endangered due to overharvesting.
That level of popularity has to mean something right? Well, yes, it does. Safed Musli is still being researched but studies have shown a strong increase in testosterone as well as sperm quality and virility in healthy males.
This study was conducted with a dose four times higher than what Manpower offers though, so your results might not be as stark.
Also known as Tongkat Ali, this wonder-herb offers a powerful one-two punch combo for male health. First, it increases free testosterone by up to 37%. Second, it reduces cortisol, the stress hormone, by up to 14%.
As a result, you’ll find yourself feeling more relaxed and in control while experiencing a significant boost in testosterone.
Longjack affects sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG) which means that it frees up testosterone already in your system for use. The result is that more T is ‘bioavailable’ to support lean muscle growth and strength gains. This has been proven in studies using doses similar to what you find in Manpower.
Maca Powder 150mg
You may know this plant extract better as Peruvian ginseng. It is a natural ingredient that offer some great health benefits. Importantly, it has been shown to increase libido in men and women over a period of 8 weeks.
It has also been linked to increased athletic performance, though this does not necessarily apply to strength training.
Unfortunately, it’s been known for a while that the increased sex drive it produces is not because of any effect on testosterone levels. It doesn’t boost testosterone, but it does affect your sex drive like testosterone does.
3,3’-Diindolylmethane (DIM) 100mg
This substance is produced naturally in your gut when you digest foods such as broccoli, cabbage or kale. These belong to a group called cruciferous vegetables and all of them contain indole-3-carbinol. When indole-3-carbinol is digested, 3,3’-diindolylmethane is one of the by-products.
Great, but what does it do for you in this context? There is evidence both for and against the effectiveness of DIM in boosting testosterone. It is an oestrogen blocker, but some studies suggest it can block testosterone as well.
Of all the studies, the most rigorous one we could find suggested that DIM increased T in the majority of patients at a dose of 225mg/day but Manpower contains less than half this amount.
5a-Hydroxy Laxogenin 50mg
More widely known as Laxogenin, this compound is derived from plants and is currently being researched for applications to humans.
Early studies on rats suggest that it can increase skeletal muscle mass and support protein synthesis. Some tout it as the next big thing in bodybuilding and wider use will prompt more research so it’s good to see Axe & Sledge embracing this emerging nutrition technology with Manpower.
Black Pepper (Bioperine®) 10mg
Bioperine® is a market-leading black pepper extract that exists to increase the bioavailability of other ingredients. It enhances the effectiveness of the formula and ensures that each benefit is provided as quickly and efficiently as possible.
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Axe and Sledge Manpower Formula Analysis
This is a strong overall formula with a couple of exceptions.
We can’t not address the elephant in the room – that at least 2 of the ingredients here don’t affect testosterone levels.
We’re talking about the Tribulus Terrestris and Maca Powder.
What about the rest of the formula? It’s strong to be fair. Mucuna Pruriens and Fenugreek are heavy hitters when it comes to increasing total testosterone.
Add to that the Longjack that will unlock more of your total testosterone and convert it to free testosterone, and we’ve got a party on our hands. We would have liked to see a higher dose of Fenugreek, 500mg ideally, but in the context of the formula the 300mg is OK.
The jury is out on DIM and Laxogenin. Not because of lack of evidence, but the doses are too low to have much of an impact. It is good to see some innovation in Manpower though, because wider use of emerging ingredients will prompt research to be done, and this is how the market evolves.
Overall, we like the formula. The addition of Bioperine® is nice and means that the effective ingredients will get to work quickly.
Axe and Sledge Manpower Benefits
Ultimately, the proof is in the ‘pudding’ as the English say.
Here are the claims that the company makes about Axe and Sledge Manpower being able to provide:
- Higher sex drive
- More intense workouts
- Faster lean muscle gains
- Increased physical endurance
- Easier fat loss
Who Takes It?
Manpower is marketed at early to middle aged athletes looking for an edge in the gym and between the sheets. If this is you, Manpower is one of the best options available.
If this is not you, Manpower is still a great choice as it supports higher testosterone levels and provides all the benefits listed above.
Any Potential Side Effects with Axe and Sledge Manpower?
Because the formula uses natural ingredients in moderate doses, the possible side effects are mild.
The main concern (for us, personally) is that Tribulus Terrestris has been linked with potentially being capable of causing enlarged prostate in the past. So, we tend to try and avoid this ingredient.
Consult your doctor if you have any concerns, though.
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Axe and Sledge Manpower – Summary
- Combines some powerful natural ingredients
- Most of the formula is strongly supported by scientific evidence
- Increases total and free testosterone
- Improves exercise performance
- Enhances libido
- Supports endurance and stamina
- Helps increase skeletal muscle mass
- Some arguably wasted space in the formula
- Mid-to-high end of the scale on price
- There are stronger products available
Pricing & Where to Buy
You can pick this up through many different websites and for 90 capsules, which will last you 30 days, you’ll pay $50-60.
Final Word on Manpower
Axe & Sledge have created a great natural testosterone booster in Manpower. It might not be perfect, but then again, we are yet to come across a perfect T-booster. Manpower is about as close to ‘ideal’ as you can get from an all-natural testosterone booster.
If we could make a couple of small tweaks it would be to drop the Tribulus Terrestris in favour of something else, maybe Ashwagandha, and increase the levels of Fenugreek and DIM.
Nit-picking aside though, there’s are some things to like about Manpower. The synergy between the most effective ingredients is nice – but we don’t believe it defeats our #1 recommended T-Booster on the market.