As an author, my mission is to help educate people on how to safely build muscle, lose fat, and get healthy as quickly and effectively as possible.
This includes raising people’s awareness on the dirty “secrets” of the supplement industry, and how to avoid wasting valuable time and money buying useless supplements and following ineffective training programs and nutrition plans.
You see, the reality is the workout supplement industry is plagued by pseudoscience, ridiculous hype, misleading advertising and endorsements, products full of junk ingredients, underdosing key ingredients, and many other shenanigans.
Most supplement companies produce cheap, junk products and try to dazzle you with ridiculous marketing claims, high-profile (and very expensive) endorsements, pseudo-scientific babble, fancy-sounding proprietary blends, and flashy packaging.
They do it all because they don’t want you to realize a simple truth of this industry:
Supplements don’t build great physiques. Dedication to proper training and nutrition does.
You see, the supplement companies are cashing in BIG on a little trick that your mind can play on you known as the placebo effect.
This is the scientifically proven fact that your simple belief in the effectiveness of a medicine or supplement can make it work. People have overcome every form of illness you can imagine, mental and physical, by taking substances which they believed to have therapeutic value, but which actually didn’t. I’m talking about things like treating cancer and diabetes, eliminating depression and anxiety, and lowering blood pressure and cholesterol levels by taking medically worthless substances that the people believed were treatments for their problems.
Many guys believe that the shiny new bottle of “muscle-maximizing” pills will work, and then they sometimes actually do “feel them working.” This is despite the fact that the ingredients used have never been scientifically proven to do anything the company claims, or even worse, have been proven ineffective.
So, while workout supplements do not play a vital role in building muscle and losing fat, and many are a complete waste of money…the right ones can help.
The truth of the matter is there are safe, natural substances that have been scientifically proven to deliver benefits such as increased strength, muscle endurance and growth, fat loss, and more.
As a part of my work, it’s been my job to know what these substances are, and find products with them that I can use myself and recommend to others.
It’s been pretty hard to do, though.
The Wild Goose Chase for Worthwhile Workout Supplements
I’ve been living the “fitness lifestyle” for over a decade, have sold over 100,000 books, and have helped thousands of people lose weight, build muscle, and get healthy.
For years now, I’ve been researching, testing, and recommending to others the best workout supplements I could find, but it was a constant struggle to maintain a list that met my standards.
What I’ve wanted for not just myself but others is simple:
All ingredients backed by published scientific literature.
All dosages at clinically effective levels.
No artificial sweeteners, dyes, or unnecessary fillers.
Good value per serving.
Apparently that’s way too much to ask, because these products simply haven’t existed. Most don’t even begin to come close to those standards. The egregious offenders of the workout supplement industry (of which there are many, unfortunately) do everything wrong:
They use a ton of ingredients that have not been scientifically proven to do what is claimed.
They underdose ingredients that actually work and use the proprietary blend to hide it.
They stuff their products full of cheap chemicals and additives.
They charge an arm and a leg.
So I did what I could. I found the best possible products for myself and my readers, but in the back of my mind, I knew things could be done better.
As my career as an author began to grow, and my “tribe” here at Muscle For Life began to form, I finally saw an opportunity to do something about the status quo that I hated so much.
I decided to take matters into my own hands and, I believe, add real value to the marketplace.
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The Birth of LEGION
I created LEGION with a simple concept in mind:
A supplement company dedicated to creating healthy, high-quality sport supplements based on sound science, and dedicated to selling them honestly.
Furthermore, I want to create supplements that set the standard by which all others are judged, and Iwant to help educate consumers on the science of athletic performance so they can make better decisions in both their workout supplementation and training.
You see, I believe that you, as a consumer, are smarter than the industry elites give you credit for.
- I think you know dubious, or even fraudulent, marketing claims when you see them.
- I think you question how effective a product can really be if it contains tiny dosages of 67 different ingredients.
- I think you don’t buy into A-list endorsements that are all about million-dollar paydays, not the products.
- I think you actually do care what you’re putting into your body, and want to know that the ingredients used are scientifically proven to be healthy, safe, and effective.
And so I decided that LEGION had to take a unique stand. It had to do what nobody else seems to be willing to do.
No proprietary blends.
There’s absolutely no reason to use them for anything other than deception and fraud.
All the science behind effective ingredients and dosages is publicly available. Everyone knows what works and doesn’t, and in what amounts. Claims of “trade secrets” are bogus.
If a company isn’t willing to tell you exactly what you’re buying, it’s because they don’t want you to know. Don’t support them. Force them to change their ways.
At LEGION, we are 100% transparent with what’s in our products, and in what dosages. Not only that, but we back each ingredient with scientific studies that you can review. When you buy a LEGION product, you know exactly what you’re getting and why.
No misleading use of science.
Many workout supplement companies cite scientific studies to back up marketing claims because it works. An appeal to science is the easiest way to give your product an air of legitimacy.
But they’re counting on something: that you don’t go and review their citations.
You see, if you actually take the time review to the studies cited, you’ll often discover one or more of the following to be true:
- The study findings are exaggerated or misconstrued to seem more significant than they actually are. Considering how much technical jargon is used in scientific literature, it’s very easy to do this convincingly.
- The studies don’t demonstrate the benefits at all. In fact, some studies cited actually demonstrate ingredients to be ineffective, yet they’re cited as grounds for use.
- The subjects of the studies are elderly or diseased, not healthy adults. Just because a substance improves a sick person’s condition in some way does not mean it will have the same effects in your body.
- The studies are animal research, not human research. While certain aspects of the human body share similarities with animals like pigs and rats, they are not similar enough to extrapolate animal research directly to humans. Animal research points the way for human research.
The marketing departments of the supplement companies that do these things know that the vast majority of consumers won’t ever check their claims, and don’t know how to even if it occurred to them.
At LEGION, we rely only on scientific research that actually applies to our consumers, healthy adults that engage in regular exercise, and we are very careful to not exaggerate findings or make unfounded marketing claims.
No “label filler” ingredients.
A common practice in this industry is using a bunch of cheap ingredients that have no scientific backing, but that simply pad the ingredients list. This is done to make it seem like you’re getting a lot for your money.
At LEGION, we use no “label fillers.” We have a simple standard that we live by: every ingredient we use must be backed by published scientific literature that demonstrates clear performance benefits.
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No underdosing key ingredients.
Most supplement companies have a simple problem:
If you want to stick to using ingredients that have scientifically proven performance benefits, and if you want to use the same dosages as the studies proving their benefits…it gets really expensive, really fast.
That means less profit per sale, and thus less money to spend on fancy marketing campaigns and endorsements.
So, what do the companies do instead?
They reduce manufacturing costs by using “label filler” ingredients, and by using tiny dosages of key ingredients (the ones backed by actual science).
When you compare other company’s dosages to the clinically effective dosages found in scientific studies, you quickly see the problem: they’re a mere fraction of what scientists used to produce performance benefits.
Most companies hide this fact by using the proprietary blend, and rely on their marketers to oversell the formulation.
At LEGION, we only use ingredients that we can include at clinically effective dosages. That is, the exact dosages shown to be safe and effective in published scientific research.
It makes our job harder, and we won’t make nearly as much profit per sale as the “big boys,” but we believe our products will represent a standard by which all others can be judged. And that matters most to us.
No artificial sweeteners.
While artificial sweeteners may not be as dangerous as some people claim, studies suggest that regular consumption of these chemicals may indeed be harmful to our health, and that more research is needed.
At LEGION, we’ve chosen to stay on the safe side and use the natural sweetener stevia, instead.
Stevia is a plant with sweet leaves, and research has shown that it increases insulin sensitivity, helps regulate blood glucose levels, has anti-carcinogenic properties, decreases oxidative stress associated with eating large amounts of carbohydrates, reduces blood pressure and inflammation in the body, lowers bad cholesterol levels, and protects the kidneys.
And in case you’re worried that naturally sweetened means “horrible tasting,” you can rest easy. We’ve taken special care to ensure that all of our products taste great, mix well, and go down easy.
No artificial food dyes.
Many supplements contain artificial dyes, known as “azo dyes,” such as FD&C Yellow #5 (also known as tartrazine), FD&C Blue #1 (also known as Brilliant Blue), FD&C Red No. 40 (also known as Allura Red AC), and others.
Like artificial sweeteners, consumption of azo dyes might not be as harmful as some claim, but there is evidence that these chemicals can cause various negative effects in the body.
At LEGION, we never use artificial food dyes because they carry potential health risks and add nothing but color. Do you really care if your pre-workout drink is a natural shade of light red, or a deep, toxic-looking crimson?
We didn’t think so.
No exaggerated, deceptive advertising or endorsements.
Call us melodramatic, but feel like we’re getting slapped in the face every time we flip through a bodybuilding magazine.
Ad after ad feature hulking freaks hawking one pill or powder or the other as if it has anything to do with why they’re so big and lean.
How dumb do these marketers think we are?
At LEGION, we feel the facts alone should sell our products. Fitness models that truly believe in and endorse certain products are well and fine, but that’s of secondary importance.
No over-charging and under-delivering.
How annoying is it to buy a $50 bottle of product only to discover that it only lasts 10 days if you follow the usage directions?
Half-filled buckets…ridiculously large serving sizes…recommendations of several scoops per serving.
We understand, and we disagree.
Because of our commitment to using clinically effective dosages and safe, healthy ingredients, we could price our products at the top of th
At LEGION, we not only provide you with, in some cases, 4-5 times the effective ingredients per serving as our competitors, but we also ensure that you get enough in every bottle to last longer than a week or two.
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The Heart of LEGION
We’re committed to delivering effective workout supplements with high-quality, healthy ingredients that have published scientific literature to back them up; and to providing a great value in terms of price and cost per serving.
You’ll be hard pressed to find another sport supplement company committed to good science, proper dosing, and healthy ingredients as we are. (I can save you the time and let you know that nobody else is doing it.)
I don’t see us as just a supplement company. We’re a research company.
We’re obsessed with the world of health and fitness science, and with educating ourselves and others on how we can safely and inexpensively optimize our athletic performance and thus get the most out of our training, sporting, and nutrition.
We’re not just looking to build a company. We’re looking to build a culture.
We believe in respecting our customers, telling things like it is, and delivering what we promise. We believe that honesty and integrity sell better than cutting corners and relying on ridiculous advertisements and lies.
We don’t just want to sell you pills and powders, we want to change the supplement industry for the better.
What do you think about what we’re doing with LEGION? Have any suggestions? Let me know in the comments below!
+ Scientific References
- Moutinho ILD, Bertges LC, Assis RVC. Prolonged use of the food dye tartrazine (FD&C yellow no 5) and its effects on the gastric mucosa of Wistar rats. Braz J Biol. 2007;67(1):141-145. doi:10.1590/s1519-69842007000100019
- Kanarek RB. Artificial food dyes and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Nutr Rev. 2011;69(7):385-391. doi:10.1111/j.1753-4887.2011.00385.x
- Tanaka T, Takahashi O, Oishi S, Ogata A. Effects of tartrazine on exploratory behavior in a three-generation toxicity study in mice. Reprod Toxicol. 2008;26(2):156-163. doi:10.1016/j.reprotox.2008.07.001
- Feng J, Cerniglia CE, Chen H. Toxicological significance of azo dye metabolism by human intestinal microbiota. Front Biosci - Elit. 2012;4 E(2):568-586. doi:10.2741/e400
- Ozbayer C, Kurt H, Kalender S, et al. Effects of stevia rebaudiana (Bertoni) extract and N-nitro-L-arginine on renal function and ultrastructure of kidney cells in experimental type 2 diabetes. J Med Food. 2011;14(10):1215-1222. doi:10.1089/jmf.2010.0280
- Shivanna N, Naika M, Khanum F, Kaul VK. Antioxidant, anti-diabetic and renal protective properties of Stevia rebaudiana. J Diabetes Complications. 2013;27(2):103-113. doi:10.1016/j.jdiacomp.2012.10.001
- Yadav SK, Guleria P. Steviol Glycosides from Stevia: Biosynthesis Pathway Review and their Application in Foods and Medicine. Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2012;52(11):988-998. doi:10.1080/10408398.2010.519447
- Schernhammer ES, Bertrand KA, Birmann BM, Sampson L, Willett WC, Feskanich D. Consumption of artificial sweetener- and sugar-containing soda and risk of lymphoma and leukemia in men and women. Am J Clin Nutr. 2012;96(6):1419-1428. doi:10.3945/ajcn.111.030833
- Qin X. What made Canada become a country with the highest incidence of inflammatory bowel disease: Could sucralose be the culprit? Can J Gastroenterol. 2011;25(9):511. doi:10.1155/2011/451036
- Abou-Donia MB, El-Masry EM, Abdel-Rahman AA, McLendon RE, Schiffman SS. Splenda alters gut microflora and increases intestinal P-glycoprotein and cytochrome P-450 in male rats. J Toxicol Environ Heal - Part A Curr Issues. 2008;71(21):1415-1429. doi:10.1080/15287390802328630