Follidrone 2.0 by Black Lion Research: Huge Natty News!

Black Lion Research Follidrone 2.0

Follidrone 2.0 is follow up to Black Lion Research’s powerful natty muscle builder Follidrone that is loaded with epicatechin and more!

We downright love when companies do new and exciting things in the world of natural muscle building. You may remember our article on epicatechin, which we called “the dark force behind dark chocolate”. Well guess who the first company to market it as a muscle-builder was? Black Lion Research, with their muscle-builder, Follidrone.

Whereas many other companies have stagnated, Black Lion Research has continued to innovate, improving this original product.

So today, we’re extremely excited to introduce to you Follidrone 2.0, which will rename labeled as just Follidrone. The revamped formula of the previously heralded version looks to be a new one-stop shop for all your natural muscle building needs, and some of our trusted readers are absolutely loving this stuff (that’s you, Bashar – thanks for the tip on this one!)

Before we get to the breakdown, take a moment to check the best deal and sign up for PricePlow alerts:

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Note: In the above price comparisons, the new version is the 90 capsule bottle.

Follidrone 2.0 Ingredients

We’ve covered a lot of great muscle builders in our days here at PricePlow, but never encountered one with this rather unique combination of ingredients. Follidrone 2.0 makes use of some very familiar faces, but also some ones you’ve rarely seen, or heard of, before.

This first one is going to warrant a lot more attention, too:

  • Ecklonia Cava extract

    Black Lion Research Follidrone 2.0 Ingredients

    Follidrone 2.0 uses several ingredients that you may have never encountered in anabolics before, but the science shows they work!

    Not familiar with Ecklonia Cava (EC)? Don’t worry, it’s only one of the most well-researched seaweeds on the planet for its health-improving benefits!

    EC is a brown seaweed that possesses a high polyphenol content which imbues the user with tons of antioxidant activity. Of particular interest is EC’s activity as an ACE inhibitor, which ultimately helps lower your blood pressure and keep your cardiovascular system running at full steam.[1] What’s more interesting about inhibiting ACE is that animal studies have shown that a lack of this enzyme directly led to increased energy expenditure, reduced fat mass, and better glucose clearance.[2]

    We’ve only scratched the surface of EC though, because where it really shines comes in the areas of sugar and fat, two notorious contributors to your lack of gains. Studies have shown that EC exerts strong anti-adipogenic characteristics in the body. Specifically, EC essentially downregulates the activity of fatty acid binding protein (FABP4), fatty acid transport protein (FATP1), fatty acid synthase (FAS).[3] This vastly reduces the body’s ability to create new fat cells (adipogenesis) keeping you lean and mean!

    Lastly, EC is able to increase natural insulin secretion as well as inhibit some carb uptake through the inhibition of various enzymes in the body.[4]

    What’s this mean? We believe it’s going to mean a lot of improved glucose uptake into your muscles, ultimately yielding body recomposition benefits of less body fat and more muscle mass. The question is how we’ll time it with our carbs.

    Pretty impressive stuff from an underwater plant if you ask us! But we’ve only just begun… (and if you want to read more about EC, see our bigger post titled Ecklonia Cava: The Sugar-Shuttling Seaweed Supplement)

  • Epicatechin

    Dark Chocolate

    There’s a reason why dark chocolate and its flavonols are continually hailed as super foods: (-)-epicatechin

    From the unfamiliar to the more familiar we go with our next ingredient, (-)-Epicatechin. Commonly referred to as (-) epi, this molecule is found in  chocolate and believed to have some great anabolic qualities.

    Researchers have surmised that -epi possesses the unique ability to inhibit myostatin, a myokine that suppresses muscle growth. Another well known myokine is follistatin, but it works in the complete opposite way of myostatin and actually supports muscle growth.

    Studies involving epicatechin have investigated these very actions on the various myokines. It just so happens that epi increased follistatin by almost 50% and decreased myostatin by 16%![5] While the researchers didn’t test for changes in lean body mass, you can assume that the effects would have been statistically significant.

    Follidrone 2.0 Edge

    Follidrone helps you find your edge to build the maximum amount of muscle.

    A recent study, published in January 2015, gave subjects 50-200mg epicatechin per day. After only five days of use, the group’s average follistatin levels were approximately 2.5 times higher than day one in those consuming (-)-epicatechin![6]

    More research is on the way, as the pilot safety studies have been completed (long story short, -epi’s shown to be extremely safe).

    This is one ingredient that we see continuing to have a big future in the industry in the coming years, both for anabolic support and also for healthy cardiovascular system support (many of the readers on our full-blown epicatechin article are older folks looking for the blood pressure benefits on top of the muscle tissue support – such a fantastic ingredient).

  • Flos Carthami extract

    Flos Carthami Graph

    Flos Carthami is an Ancient Chinese Medicine that’s shown to elevate Follistatin and inhibit Myostatin, just what we want in a muscle building supp!

    Flos Carthami, a.k.a. Hong Hua (safflower), is a remedy from Ancient Chinese Medicine traditionally used to treat a number of ailments including a number of cardiovascular issues.[7] While we’re always in favor of ingredients that support a healthy heart, what we’re really after here is Flos Carthami’s actions on the two important myokines we’ve been discussing above: follistatin and myostatin.

    Clinical trials have found that this Ancient Chinese remedy is strong promoter of follistatin and it’s been shown to decrease the amount of myostatin.[8] Again this is great for those of you who struggle to really pack on quality muscle.

  • Citrus Bioflavonoids

    Extracts from various citrus fruits have gained popularity in recent years for their various health benefits. Noted effects of these extracts range from reduced blood pressure to improved diabetes markers to weight loss.[9,10] Among the citrus bioflavonoids included in Follidrone 2.0 are Naringenin and Tangeretin.

    Including these citrus flavonoids in Follidrone 2.0 serves two purposes. First, the flavonoids improve the bioavailability of epicatechin, but what we’re really after is their muscle-building properties: namely, Naringenin and Tangeretin both target the AMPK signaling pathway and its via this pathway that citrus flavonoids are able to increase cell uptake of glucose![11,12]

  • Quercetin-Niacin cocrystal

    Quercetin is readily found in grapes, onions, and many other vegetables.

    Quercetin is readily found in grapes, onions, and many other vegetables.

    Quercetin is nothing new to the supplement industry as it’s one of the most researched bioflavonoids around. The only problem is that it’s not very bioavailable on its own. However, pairing it with Niacin and having it in a cocrystal form improves its bioavailability and uptake in the body.[13]

    As for effects, quercetin has been documented to increase endurance via increasing production of mitochondrial biogenesis in muscle cells.[14] Here we see yet another muscle-enhancing ingredient in Follidrone 2.0.

  • Octyl gallate

    Octyl gallate is an ester of 1-octanol and gallic acid that’s commonly used as a food additive for its antioxidant and preservative qualities. The reason it’s included here, very similar to the citrus flavonoids. Octyl gallate improves the bioavailability of one of our star ingredients, Epicatechin!

    This ingredient is a carryover from the original Follidrone and we can see why. Epi on its own doesn’t have the best bioavailability in the body, so it only makes sense to add as much insurance as we can!

A “permanent” anabolic window?

According to Black Lion Research, one of the great things follidrone 2 does is “significantly activate glut4”. This is like permanently having the post training “anabolic window” open.

We’re not sure about those claims, but it makes at least a bit of sense when you see that there is research on GLUT4 and the ACE Inhibitor, at least performed in mice.[16] Remember that our ACE Inhibitor, in this case, is ecklonia cava

This then leads us to the next section…

The diabetic connection?

WARNING: Take this next part with a huge grain of salt. We cannot make medical claims here, and everyone with a medical condition must see a doctor and only use supplements under a doctor’s care.

Word on the street is that there are a few diabetic users absolutely loving this product.

Following on the GLUT4 activation discussed above, it may in turn draw more glucose from the bloodstream and shuttles it into muscles. This happens with protein as well, but glucose is easier to measure.

Rumor has it that “more than one diabetic has been able to reduce or completely stop insulin while using Follidrone 2”. The effect is apparently that strong — but, once again, we urge you to monitor your blood sugar like a hawk and only do this under the very watchful eye of your physician. Messing with medication doses can potentially be fatal, as all diabetics know.

Regardless, diabetics are wise to keep an eye on postprandial glucose, as they always should with new diets or supplements.

Black Lion Research Supplements

This company is clearly not screwing around

This, in turn, leads us to some questions on dosing:

Dosing

Black Lion Research offers two dosing strategies for Follidrone 2.0:

  • Training Days: Take 1 capsule in the morning and 2 capsules prior to training.
  • Non-Training Days: Take 1 capsule 3 times per day.

Carb timing?

Our biggest questions for Black Lion Research focus on the carb shuttling taking place here with the new Follidrone. To err on the side of caution, we advise taking the two-capsule dose with complex carbohydrates.

You can adjust or dial back the carbs if you’re feeling fine (several users are reporting no problems with fasted workouts), but our concern is that it may lower blood sugar levels a bit too much, given the reviews out there. Better to be safe than sorry — We don’t want anyone crashing during their workouts!!

On the plus side, weightlifters should get a massive pump if they dose and time their carbs up properly.

Takeaway

Black Lion Research

It might be time to look into everything else these guys have been doing…

Building muscle takes years and years of hard work. For those that struggle, it can turn into a never ending cycle of program hopping, diet changing, head banging and shouting. Sometimes you need a little help to make sure your body is actually growing from all the work you’re putting into it.

That’s where Follidrone 2.0 comes into play. With its unique mixture of potent anabolic compounds, it’ll have you growing like you’ve never seen before.

Our biggest questions revolve around how much of it is actually anabolic, and how much is actually due to glucose disposal into our muscle tissues. And with that, how are we going to time our carbs up? That seems to be a personal thing that everyone needs to tweak themselves.

Either way, we’re seeing this as a must-try muscle-builder for 2016/2017, and it may force us to rewrite our next-generation muscle-building supplements page. Keep an eye on Black Lion Research.

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References

  1. Wijesinghe WA, Ko SC, Jeon YJ; Effect of phlorotannins isolated from Ecklonia cava on angiotensin I-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitory activity . Nutr Res Pract. (2011)
  2. Jayasooriya AP, Mathai ML, Walker LL, et al. Mice lacking angiotensin-converting enzyme have increased energy expenditure, with reduced fat mass and improved glucose clearance. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 2008;105(18):6531-6536. doi:10.1073/pnas.0802690105.
  3. CS K. Anti-adipogenic effect of dioxinodehydroeckol via AMPK activation in 3T3-L1 adipocytes. Chem Biol Interact. 2010 Jun 7;186(1):24-9. doi: 10.1016/j.cbi.2010.04.003
  4. Kim HK; “Ecklonia cava Inhibits Glucose Absorption and Stimulates Insulin Secretion in Streptozotocin-Induced Diabetic Mice”. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med; 2012; http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22645628
  5. Gutierrez-Salmean, Gabriela; “Effects of (−)-Epicatechin on Molecular Modulators of Skeletal Muscle Growth and Differentiation”; The Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry 25.1; 2014; Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3857584/
  6. Barnett, Christopher F; “Pharmacokinetic, Partial Pharmacodynamic and Initial Safety Analysis of (−)-Epicatechin in Healthy Volunteers”; Food & Function; 6.3 (2015): 824–833; Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4357542/
  7. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0102695X15001015
  8. Yang C, Li X, Rong J. Amygdalin isolated from Semen Persicae (Tao Ren) extracts induces the expression of follistatin in HepG2 and C2C12 cell lines. Chinese Medicine. 2014;9(1):23. doi:10.1186/1749-8546-9-23.
  9. Fujioka K, Greenway F, Sheard J, Ying Y, The effects of grapefruit on weight and insulin resistance: relationship to the metabolic syndrome. J Med Food. 2006 Spring;9(1):49-54.
  10. Cardile V, Graziano AC, Venditti A; Clinical evaluation of Moro (Citrus sinensis (L.) Osbeck) orange juice supplementation for the weight management. Nat Prod Res. 2015 Jan 15:1-5.
  11. Zygmunt K e. Naringenin, a citrus flavonoid, increases muscle cell glucose uptake via AMPK. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2010 Jul 23;398(2):178-83. doi: 10.1016/j.bbrc.2010.06.048.
  12. Kim SH, Hur HJ, Yang HJ, et al. Citrus junos Tanaka Peel Extract Exerts Antidiabetic Effects via AMPK and PPAR-γ both In Vitro and In Vivo in Mice Fed a High-Fat Diet. Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine : eCAM. 2013;2013:921012. doi:10.1155/2013/921012.
  13. Cocrystals of Quercetin with Improved Solubility and Oral Bioavailability Adam J. Smith, Padmini Kavuru, Lukasz Wojtas, Michael J. Zaworotko, and R. Douglas Shytle Molecular Pharmaceutics 2011 8 (5), 1867-1876 DOI: 10.1021/mp200209j
  14. Davis JM, et al; Quercetin increases brain and muscle mitochondrial biogenesis and exercise tolerance . Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol. (2009)
  15. Tagashira, T., Choshi, T., Hibino, S., Kamishikiryou, J. and Sugihara, N. (2012), Influence of Gallate and Pyrogallol Moieties on the Intestinal Absorption of (−)-Epicatechin and (−)-Epicatechin Gallate. Journal of Food Science, 77: H208–H215. doi: 10.1111/j.1750-3841.2012.02902.x
  16. Shiuchi, T. et al. “ACE Inhibitor Improves Insulin Resistance In Diabetic Mouse Via Bradykinin And NO”. Hypertension 40.3 (2002): 329-334; http://hyper.ahajournals.org/content/40/3/329
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