Before I get to this review, I want to let everyone know why I have been inactive lately. I have been working towards building a more advanced edible review site that is geared towards those looking to further their cannabis education while also helping those with dietary restrictions find an edible that suits their needs. Instead of posting new content on this blog, I have been writing product and event reviews that will be posted on the new site when it is launched. I decided to write this blog now instead of later because the public needs to know about this company and their values.
I came across EndoHack Labs at the 4.20 Games in Santa Monica on April 1st, 2017. Let me start by saying, I am always skeptical of companies that use a lot of words that people aren’t familiar with. It’s a method companies use to make it seem like they know what they are doing, “wowing” people with their “latest discovery”. Before I even read the bottle their capsules come in, my eyes caught a misspelling on their packaging. I lost the desire to read the bottle at all, so I looked at the flyers EndoHack were passing out that had their capsules attached. I immediately noticed they were claiming their product is to treat pain and inflammation. Exact words from their flyer: “A synergistic blend of cannabinoids and nootropics designed to hack the flow state. A powerful combination of CBD and high potency curcuminoids to treat pain and inflammation.” It is a big red flag when a company claims their product can do something medically without any data or research to back it up.
Upon returning home from the event, I decided to open up a capsule to see what was really in it. The capsule contained a blend of powders which were different colors and consistencies. I tried to find an ingredient list on the companies website to no avail. I messaged the company on Instagram and they quickly got back to me. They told me their ingredients are listed on all of the bottles, which is a useless fact to someone like me who received the sample capsule and not a full bottle. Once they sent the ingredient list, I decided to google all of them and find out for myself what this product really is. I have included the list of ingredients and their possible side effects at the bottom so you can decide for yourself if this is something you want to put in your body.
“This product is designed to increase focus and mental stamina” is what the company told me when they sent me the ingredient list. I asked the company if they had run any tests to prove the benefits of their products and they told me “Each ingredient has been studied independently and has been shown to be effective compared to a placebo.” Which basically means NO, they have not done any studies on these ingredients combined and instead have relied off the information they have found in studies done years and years ago. This led to me asking many more questions which I have typed up below:
Me: Are those ingredients that people should have a warning before taking? (Sidenote: My research showed that a lot of these ingredients SHOULD come with a warning!)
EndoHack: The ingredients are safe when used as directed.
Me: And what are the directions for use?
EndoHack: Product directions and serving suggestions are listed on the website and bottle labels of each of our products.
Me: Minimal research into the ingredients you sent me shows me that this is not something that should be given to the public the way your company gave out samples at the games. One ingredient tells me it’s bad for someone with thyroid problems, and another said it’s not good for someone with a weakened immune system. How can you consciously give this out to people? Cannabis is a medicine and should be treated as such. Giving out products that you yourself have not tested is so irresponsible.
EndoHack: These products have been thoroughly looked into. They are not designed to cure or treat any disease. It is always recommended that you consult your physician before beginning any exercise or diet/supplement program.
Me: Your products have not been thoroughly looked into. You’re in a medicinal market. People consume cannabis for medical reasons. If someone has a weak immune system and they try your product, they could get very sick. How is that something your company is okay with?
EndoHack: Incorrect. Our products have very specific purposes they are designed for. We are very upfront about our mission statement. We have products for athletes.
Me: What is incorrect?
EndoHack : Your assumption that our product is designed to treat people suffering for illness. You are incorrect.
Me: Your product doesn’t have to be designed to treat those illnesses, you’re still operating your company in a medicinal market with medicinal regulations. If you’re currently narrowing your market to people without these conditions, the recreational market hasn’t set standards to function legally within that yet, so everyone who would be receiving your products at these events is still considered a patient.
EndoHack: Yes. But we are upfront about what market they are designed for and we hide nothing about our products. The products we use are very popular and commonly used in the supplement industry and are well regarded as safe. Whether or not the recreational market has set its stands we will be ready and haven’t infringed on any regulation. If a medical patient is interested in our product, they will get all the information they and their doctor need to make an education decision to try or not.
EndoHack: Our product is for athletes.
Me: So any athlete who has aids or cancer isn’t in your market then?
EndoHack: That is between them and their doctor.
Me: Okay, and how are you selling your products? Direct to athletes? Or to dispensaries or distribution services?
EndoHack: We operate as a sponsor at the moment. We sponsor athletes.
This conversation left me feeling so disgusted! How can a company like this exist? They couldn’t even put in the effort to make sure their labels are spelled correctly, so how can we trust their products are safe? They advertise that their product can treat pain and inflammation but yet told me my assumption that their product is designed to treat illness is incorrect. They made it very clear that they plan to only target athletes and they don’t care about the cannabis users who use cannabis as a medicine. They don’t even see a need to WARN medicinal users of the possible side effects of this capsule. While a lot of things we consume in life have a possible negative side effect, do you really want to risk your health for a product that has no scientific evidence to back up its health claims?
It’s a shame that a company does not have a patients best interest in mind when bringing a new product to the market. This is why I do what I do. I have YOU, my readers, in mind. I know that cannabis IS a medicine and should be treated as such. I promise to continue to bring you the facts you need in order to make an informed decision about what you put in your body.
Alpha-Npc: A chemical released when a fatty acid found in soy and other plants breaks down. It is used as medicine. Insufficient evidence that this product promotes memory. Seems to be safe when used appropriately but side effects people can experience include heartburn, headache, insomnia, rashes, dizziness, and confusion.
Phosphatidlyserine: This supplement has only been studied when it was made from cow brains. Due to fear of mad cow disease, this supplement is now made from soy or cabbage. There is not enough evidence to prove this supplement can increase athletic performance. Phosphatidylserine is POSSIBLY SAFE for most adults and children when taken by mouth appropriately. It has been used in research studies for up to six months. Phosphatidylserine can cause side effects including insomnia and stomach upset, particularly at doses over 300 mg.
Bacopa monnieri: Some research shows that taking specific Bacopa extracts improves some measure of memory in otherwise healthy older adults. Insufficient evidence for anxiety, joint pain, epilepsy, and other conditions. Bacopa extract is POSSIBLY SAFE for adults when taken by mouth appropriately and short-term, up to 12 weeks. COMMON side effects include increased bowel movements, stomach cramps, nausea, dry mouth, and fatigue. Bacopa might slow down the heart beat. This could be a problem in people who already have a slow heart rate. Bacopa might cause “congestion” in the intestines. This might cause problems in people who have a blockage in their intestines. Bacopa might increase secretions in the stomach and intestines. There is concern that this could worsen ulcers. Bacopa might increase fluid secretions in the lung. There is concern that this could worsen lung conditions such as asthma or emphysema. Bacopa might increase levels of thyroid hormone. Bacopa should be used cautiously or avoided if you have a thyroid condition or take thyroid hormone medications. Bacopa might increase secretions in the urinary tract. There is concern that this could worsen urinary obstruction.
Huperzine a: A substance purified from a plant called Chinese club moss. Although the makers of huperzine A start with a plant, their product is the result of a lot of laboratory manipulation. It is a highly purified drug, unlike herbs that typically contain hundreds of chemical ingredients. As a result, some people regard huperzine A as a drug, and they argue that it stretches the guidelines of the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DSHEA). Insufficient evidence for increasing energy and alertness. Huperzine A is POSSIBLY SAFE when taken by mouth for a short period of time (less than 3 months). It can cause some side effects including nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, sweating, blurred vision, slurred speech, restlessness, loss of appetite, contraction and twitching of muscle fibers, cramping, increased saliva and urine, inability to control urination, high blood pressure, and more. Huperzine A can slow the heart rate which might be a problem for people who already have a slow heart rate or other heart conditions involving the heart rate. Since huperzine A seems to affect brain chemicals, there is concern that it might make epilepsy worse. Using huperzine A might make Gastrointestinal blockage worse because huperzine A can increase mucous and fluid secretions in the intestine, causing “congestion.” Huperzine A might make peptic ulcers worse because huperzine A can increase mucous and fluid secretions in the stomach and intestine, causing “congestion.” Using huperzine A might make asthma or emphysema worse because huperzine A can increase mucous and fluid secretions in the lung, causing “congestion.” Using huperzine A might make blockage of the urinary or reproductive system worse because huperzine A can increase mucous and fluid secretions in these organs, causing “congestion.”
Vinpocetine: A man-made chemical resembling a substance found in the periwinkle plant Vinca minor. Most of the studies were published prior to 1990, and results are hard to interpret because they used a variety of terms and criteria for cognitive decline and dementia. Vinpocetine appears to be POSSIBLY SAFE for most people when taken by mouth appropriately. No significant harmful effects were reported in a study of people with Alzheimer’s disease treated with large doses of vinpocetine (60 mg per day) for one year. Vinpocetine can cause some side effects including stomach pain, nausea, sleep disturbances, headache, dizziness, nervousness, and flushing of the face. Don’t use vinpocetine if you have a problem with blood clotting because it might increase the risk of bleeding. Vinpocetine might weaken the immune system in some people which might reduce the body’s ability to fight infections. If you already have a weakened immune system due to other conditions such as HIV/AIDS or cancer treatment, check with your healthcare provider before using vinpocetine. Vinpocetine might slow blood clotting. There is a concern that it might increase the risk of bleeding during and after surgery.
Cordyceps: Cordyceps is a fungus that lives on certain caterpillars in the high mountain regions of China. Supplement makers are able to get enough of the product to sell because cordyceps will reproduce in the laboratory. Possibly ineffective Athletic performance. Several studies have shown that taking cordyceps (CordyMax Cs-4) or a combination of cordyceps and roseroot (Optygen) does not improve endurance in trained male cyclists. Cordyceps is POSSIBLY SAFE for most people when taken appropriately by mouth, short-term. Cordyceps might cause the immune system to become more active. This could increase the symptoms of auto-immune diseases. If you have multiple sclerosis (MS), lupus (systemic lupus erythematosus, SLE), rheumatoid arthritis (RA), or other conditions, it’s best to avoid using cordyceps. Cordyceps might slow blood clotting. Taking cordyceps might increase the risk of bleeding in people with bleeding disorders. Using cordyceps might increase the risk of bleeding during surgery.
Tyrosine: Tyrosine is one of the amino acids, which are the building blocks of protein. The body makes tyrosine from another amino acid called phenylalanine. Tyrosine can also be found in dairy products, meats, fish, eggs, nuts, beans, oats, and wheat. Tyrosine is used in protein supplements to treat an inherited disorder called phenylketonuria (PKU). People who have this problem can’t process phenylalanine properly, so as a result they can’t make tyrosine. To meet their bodies’ needs, supplemental tyrosine is given. Tyrosine is LIKELY SAFE when taken by mouth in food amounts and POSSIBLY SAFE when taken by adults short-term in medicinal amounts or when applied to the skin. Tyrosine seems to be safe when used in doses up to 150 mg/kg per day for up to 3 months. Some people experience side effects such as nausea, headache, fatigue, heartburn, and joint pain. The body uses tyrosine to make thyroxine, a thyroid hormone. Taking extra tyrosine might increase thyroxine levels too much, making overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism) and Graves disease worse.
Theanine: Theanine is an amino acid (a building block for proteins) found in green tea. People use theanine for treating anxiety and high blood pressure, for preventing Alzheimer’s disease, and for making cancer drugs more effective. There is not enough research to support these claims. Theanine is POSSIBLY SAFE when used by mouth, short-term. Theanine has been used one time per week for 3 weeks. It is not known if use for longer periods of time is safe.
Ingredient information sourced from Webmd.com