The Definitive Bible On Health Supplementation


Examine is a 1001 page reference book on using supplements based on stated effects such as increasing power output, increasing muscle mass, decreasing blood glucose levels, and so on. It has compiled research on 200 specific supplements to help you decide where the science stands. If a study receives an A or B grade on affecting cortisol, for example, then the supplement did show an increase or decrease in cortisol levels if taken (you can follow the links provided to review the research yourself). It also tells you how significant the research is with descriptions such as “minor,” “notable,” or “strong.”

The beginning of the book gives a broad summary on which supplements you should be taking based on common deficiencies in our diets, particularly Vitamin D and K:

The RDA for vitamin D is roughly 400-800 IU, and the optimal level is roughly 2000 IU minimum. The only people who do not need to concern themselves with vitamin D are those that live within the tropics and have frequent sun exposure with bare skin (wearing a t-shirt and shorts is not enough).

The RDA for vitamin K is roughly 60-120 mcg, and the optimal level is roughly 1000 mcg. This optimal level is mostly the same for both vitamin K1 and K2. It should be noted that while many sources may claim to hit the RDA for vitamin K, they have poor bioavailability – your body is unable to extract the full amount from said foods.

Two additional examples are zinc and magnesium:

Zinc is not usually a concern for non-athletes, but it is excreted in higher amounts when a person sweats to a higher degree. In instances of high mineral excretion from sweating, then zinc supplementation would be useful. Alternatively, oysters provide it in the diet.

Magnesium does not have a really good single-food source aside from some nuts (the high calorie count of which limits how much can be consumed). If most of the foods in your diet contain appreciable levels of magnesium then you can avoid supplementation, but if too much of your diet is lacking magnesium then deficiency is likely.

The next section alphabetically reviews approximately 200 supplements ranging from 1,3-Dimethylamylamine to Ziziphus jujuba. I picked two supplements to review: caffeine and zinc.


Caffeine has many stated effects. The book looks at these different effects and gives them a grade:


The above screenshot shows three effects of caffeine (the book details approximately 20). Studies are grouped within each effect to help determine an overall grade of efficacy.

From the caffeine portion we can conclude that it helps notably on three fronts: power output (i.e. lifting), anaerobic activity (i.e. running), and increasing wakefulness. If you are using caffeine for another purpose, like improving memory, the research does not support it. Drinking an espresso or two before your workout would seem to help more than not.


Zinc is quite popular in these parts for its effects on increasing testosterone. Does the research support this claim? First, let’s examine what the book says about dosage:

Different chelations and forms have different weights and dosing protocols. Zinc is most commonly dosed in either the ‘low dosage’ range of 5-10mg or the ‘high dosage’ range of 25-45mg. The low dosage is a daily preventative that reduces the risk for deficiency, and the high dosage range is the one used to prevent deficiency in persons who have more than just a dietary deficiency working against them (athletes, diabetics, etc.). There is zinc ‘superloading’ protocol using up to 100mg zinc daily, and while this is confirmed to be safe for short term usage (2-4 months) it is well above the tolerable upper limit (TUL) of 40mg and thus not advisable for prolonged supplementation.

Here is a screenshot which shows the summary of zinc’s effect on testosterone:


It appears that zinc supplementation only increases your testosterone if you are definitely zinc deficient or physically active. If you have normal testosterone levels and are not physically active, these is not yet any evidence to show zinc will help you.

I’m not currently on zinc. I feel that my horniness is fine (though lower than 10 years ago) and I do engage in light physical activity. The research suggests that unless there is a genuine problem with my blood testosterone level, the supplement is likely a waste, but then again I do sweat heavily, which is a way that zinc escapes the body. Based on this information, it seems that a low dosage experiment for one month would by a justified call just to observe the effects, but I shouldn’t expect much in the way of concrete change.

The second part of the book may be more useful for some: it lists the health goal you want along with the supplements that show the most promise in achieving that goal. Most goals are revolved around specific biological gains that weightlifters would be most interested in, but it also has more general outcomes. I looked at cognition and insomnia.


Here’s a screenshot with the supplements that offer the most benefit in terms of cognition, though under certain circumstances (when experiencing fatigue or an otherwise depleted state):


This is the first time I’ve heard of rhodiola rosea. Clicking over to its fact sheet, I learned that studies show it has positive effects with fatigue, subjective well-being, cognition, and depression. If I wanted to improve my cognition, rhodiola would be the logical first supplement to try.


I am a light sleeper with problems staying asleep (I’ve been recently using a white noise machine to muffle city noises outside my window). The guide shows that melatonin is the gold standard when it comes to improving sleep, without exhibiting any side effects.


Who is this book for?

This book isn’t for casual lifters or guys who have no health problems they want to address. It’s more geared for men who can answer yes to the following questions:

1. Are you taking supplements right now? If so, you’ll find this book useful to not only find out whether you should continue taking those supplements but if there are other substances that could be more effective.

2. Do you plan on starting an intense workout program with a goal to greatly increase muscle mass? Instead of relying on anecdotal evidence that you read on the internet, you can use this as a reference guide to develop your own supplementation program.

3. Do you have nagging health concerns that could be treated naturally before pharmaceuticals? Guys in their younger 20’s are probably in tip-top health, but the older guys past their prime would get use from the book’s recommendations.

(Click here to visit the Examine homepage)

How this book can be improved

I’d like to see a section that details likely deficiencies for men based on age range. For example, it could have a “30-35 years old” section that lists the common biological problems that group is having and which supplements make the most sense in taking. Maybe it’s possible my body is lacking in something which I don’t realize.

Another improvement can be in expanding the introduction. I want to learn more about supplementation in general and even read case studies on how men solved their problems with a custom program. For a reference guide of this length, it would make sense for the author to essentially provide a “supplementation for dummies” intro that is geared to beginners, because right now the book assumes you already have some familiarity with supplements.


To say that this book is thorough is an understatement—I’ve never seen substances analyzed in such a meta manner. The main issue is the price versus the reward. It would be a marginal call for me because I’m not a heavy lifter or have significant health concerns, but identifying just one or two supplements that would improve my life would make its cost worthwhile. It also helps that the author puts out free book updates for buyers that reflect that latest research.

Examine is not a book that you buy and read in one sitting. It’s meant more as a reference guide that you check periodically as your health goals progress. Unless you can answer yes to at least one of the three questions above, it’s safe to skip. Otherwise, I predict you will get value from it.

I’m especially pleased that Examine is involved in sponsoring ROK for May since I can see it offering a direct health benefit to ROK readers who are more inclined to physical self-improvement than the general population. If you’re interested in supplementation, click here to learn more about Examine. ROK readers get a $5 discount.

34 thoughts on “The Definitive Bible On Health Supplementation”

  1. Vindicated! … about increased Vitamin D levels . Despite Mr Anal Retentive sidetracking. Thank you Roosh .
    There are high absorption Magnesium powders , like the one LEF sells . And Rhodiola I ve used myself and is a noticeable energy source proven in personal experience ; maybe moreso for older guys. It ranks with aceytl r carnitene and alpha lipoic acid combos.
    I would like to direct attention to Carbon 60 in olive oil… easily the top antioxidant available today. Its so leading edge IMO that its called ” RESEARCH” material. Do your own due diligence on it.
    Finally 35+ guys consider Stem Cell 100
    as bleeding edge . Important telomere support is just one benefit.

  2. They did several studies on people with heart conditions, They gave them fish oil over a period of 10 years, and it did nothing. They also experimented with high quality multi-vitamins on cancer patients, their survival rates were not changed, oral vitamin-d, they found was useless (The body produces about 15,000 iu’s in about 15 minutes of REAL sunlight). Rhodiola, Is not effective unless the plant has grown in a cold climate like siberia, a cold climate so it could produce the “adaptogenic chemicals”, What you’re buying IS rhodiola, but it’s lab grown garbage, its too easy on the plant, so it doesn’t make any of the chemicals you’d need to benefit. Supplements are not the holy grail of life extension, they have been around for decades, and not ONE centenarian can attribute some kind of “tea drinking antioxidant malarkey/ charlatanry to their old age.
    Also, A healthy functioning body may mean a quick metabolism, The faster the cell the quicker it damages itself causing “aging”. Ideally you want to slow the metabolism down as much as possible, this is why females live longer, they are short, and have a lower metabolic requirement, along with Asians, who are also small in stature and seem to be long-lived. We try to cheat our lifespans by being extra-healthy, but guess what fellas? There is such a thing as “hormesis” which means, when you make conditions difficult for your body, it adapts positively, Being “too healthy” may just give you weak DNA in the long-run. The mind needs hardship to develop, and so does the body. Exposing the body to trials, toughens it, and encourages longevity, especially weight lifting.
    Ironically, the Japanese are the nation that has the least amount of sex, but also the nation in which males live longer. Is sex the holy grail? Why is something so exciting… which we all believe leads to climax of our universal purpose via orgasm, not encouraging “longevity”?
    (A japanese man is on average 5’7)
    Roosh, This website is still a seed, It needs more, It’s been around for quite some time, the articles are excellent!!, but we need to evolve the commune, with some high quality-video sections of game at work, and turn it into something EPIC. It has got to become the “google” of SEX. Sex sells, and google is worth :
    358 BILLION!!!!!!!
    Most people who access google, Search for “hot wet cunt” Essentially they are making AT LEAST 1 4th of that cash off of PORN!
    Now, all we need to do, Is promote “sexual access idealism” and technically, we can be worth a couple billion within a decade. Think about it, as sexual access becomes limited and worse with feminism, those who sell the “dream” to betas, are going to become RICH. We need to data mine the best commenters , and lock this shit, we need our own “society”, fuck all betas, and they should not get this knowledge without benefiting the commune.

    1. Multi vitamins arent about cancer survival ; thats a red herring. I will go from observation and multitudes of other studies of the effectiveness of MVs and oil products. Agreed about correct form of Rhodiola.
      Look , I ve been down the path ahead of most guys here cause im older and have tested , rejected , experimented til I know what works. You can go from your perspective or theory ; and I ll go from experience. And yes , I checked out numerous studies too in my search.

    2. “Ironically, the Japanese are the nation that has the least amount of
      sex, but also the nation in which males live longer. Is sex the holy
      grail? Why is something so exciting… which we all believe leads to
      climax of our universal purpose via orgasm, not encouraging “longevity”?”
      – Good point. I have read a lot about this and it seems to be corroborated by many medical experts elsewhere. Over orgasms, or frequent sex affects longevity and leads to premature aging. Sex is essentially a catabolic activity which must only be practiced in moderation. In the animal kingdom, the male often dies as soon as he reproduced. In contrast, Exercise, etc are all metabolic activities. It is also been recently found by genetic scientists that having sex with a promiscuous partner (female) alters male DNA to affect lifespan. The point is best explained by the line at ending of the movie, “King Kong” : ‘It was beauty that killed the beast’. Similarly too much sex can kill men, bu not women. Semen retention conserves life; another reason recently discovered, which also proves that women who have sex frequently tend to live longer, (because they absorb semen) , in contrast to men having more sex. Women are often responsible for shortening men’s life spans through sex.

      1. I think id prefer to live by the sword and die by the sword. Even if that sword is now much more metaphorical than it was before I read this post.

      2. I have no citations/sources for what I am writing below. Believe it if you want; try it if you are open minded to prove it to yourself. It’s not too difficult.
        Orgasms convert Testosterone to DHT (DiHydroTestosterone) in the erect penis. DHT is the most inflammatory hormone in the human body. When a man has unprotected vaginal intercourse, the DHT is broken down before the erection is lost. Why, I don’t know. Perhaps something being transferred from vaginal fluids breaks down DHT. In all other cases of male orgasms (masturbation, anal, oral, protected sex), the DHT floods the body when the erection is lost.
        DHT binds to the prostate.
        DHT binds to the hair follicles all over the body. On the crown of the head, the DHT strangulates the hair follicles, causing male pattern baldness. The rest of the body, DHT may activate hair follicles, causing dormant follicles to grow hair.
        DHT, being sourced from testosterone, is a bigger problem for men who have high testosterone (ring finger is longer than index finger means you are a high testosterone male)
        DHT can cause inflammation throughout the body. For example, hemorrhoids.
        The biggest culprit is masturbation. Our society encourages it. Doctors, teachers and even parents consider it healthy. Without having any clue as to what is happening in the body as a consequence.
        Men need testosterone. It makes us men. It builds and maintains muscles. It gives us the balls to fight, to play risky, the courage to risk rejection/embarrassment asking a girl out. It increases our metabolism. (unlike women, who have no control over their hormone levels, men have complete control over their testosterone levels. Have 3+ orgasms in a day, you end up with less testosterone in your body than a baby boy)
        With low testosterone, we get stuck in a vicious circle of jacking off, always maintaining low testosterone.
        Stop masturbating. To live longer and healthier. To look better. To have high testosterone. To have lower DHT levels.
        Some facts which maybe useful.
        Pheromones are made of base sex hormones (testosterone/estrogen). Low testosterone means you’re releasing less pheromones.
        Its take 74 days for sperm to mature to adulthood. 21 more days before they start dying; meaning it takes about 3 weeks since the last orgasm for a man to fill his sperm tank. There is no excuse for a man to masturbate during this period. It is not needed.
        Some personal observations.
        I have stopped losing hair since I stopped masturbation.
        Masturbation, DHT overload in the body, tends to build anti-women sentiment. Along with a sense of shame (repressed now), I have noticed that days after masturbating, I have negative feelings towards women which fades over time. This could be guilt or my bodys reaction to high levels of DHT in the system, which would stem from me jacking off to a woman in the first place.
        And finally, men lose testosterone in two ways. Some is converted to DHT. Some is ejaculated in the semen. It turns out, that women need testosterone in order to have an orgasm. Ever wonder why you want to cum in her mouth? There’s testosterone receptors in the mouth. So the logic is, you transfer testosterone to her, orally or vaginally. The next session, her likelihood of having an orgasm is increased dramatically since your testosterone is in her system. (testosterone nasal spray for women to achieve orgasms is now on the market, known as Tefina)
        DHT converted normally by the male body is not a source of DHT related problems in a healthy male, since the conversion is localized to where the DHT is needed.

    3. Shorter people have lower levels of growth hormone, which dramatically reduces the risk of a bunch of problems like cancer. When a population has lower levels of growth hormone, their life expectancy jumps up because a larger percentage avoids and survives life threatening sickness in their old age.

      1. The downside is that shorter people have higher instances of heart disease because their blood veins are physically smaller. So there’s pros and cons to each.

  3. Most guys including myself won’t benefit from vitamins. Unless you work out and you’re in that upper echelon of men want to get past 400+ lbs into low 500’s maybe but most guy just need to eat properly. My favorite pre and post food is chocolate milk. There are simple and complex carbs with protein and helps curb your appetite and its good for you

    1. The idea that choc-milk is a sensible pre and post workout is an absurd mistruth perpetrated by a recent dairy lobby PR campaign.
      It’s full of estrogenic compounds, it contains casein which inhibits mineral absorption, it causes mild to severe digestive problems for the majority of humans and it’s full of refined sugar.

      1. lol, the Dairy Industrial Complex. I’m sticking with it though. I’m not lactose intolerant

        1. I just can’t agree with that, if you have kind of healthy diet you can get everything need through normal food. No need to spend 30+usd on vitamins. F’that

      2. I stay away from sugar. I do add honey to the post-workout drink I make at home, however.
        Giving up sugar was one of the greatest things I’ve ever done, although not so easy at first. It’s almost EVERYWHERE.

    2. Think long term with vitamins . All im telling you is , my observation is ageing is visibly affected by vitamin intake.

  4. Is this a paid article? It looks likes one so I just want to applaud the comments made by Moderator and GrandAdmiralAlphaCommander. You sirs got it spot on and especially on dangers of casual sex and on the importance of semen retention. Here’s another even less known subject.
    Sexual fluid craving
    Sexual fluid craving is a condition in which a person has feelings of depression, fatigue and even despair that are relieved when their body absorbs just a little sexual fluid, usually from a man. It can be absorbed in the vagina, by mouth, or just rubbed on the skin. It is most common in women who are intelligent and somewhat selfish, and it affects thousands of young women, as well as some young men.
    A person craving sexual fluid, for example, may go outside her marriage to obtain male fluid, even though she may not even enjoy the sex.
    The causes can be a combination of the following:
    1. Most commonly, I believe the cause is simple nutritional depletion. This is confusing, however, because only a small amount of sexual fluid provides relief, not enough to replenish a person nutritionally.
    2. Having experienced a rape, in many cases, in which the person was “dried out”. This depletion of sexual fluid always makes the situation much worse.
    3. A subtle chiropractic misalignment of the low back.
    4. Nutritional and possibly other properties of male sexual fluid that make it feel good when the body is depleted nutritionally.
    5. A possible entity attachment situation.
    6. Possible iron toxicity. This complicates the craving by diminishing the desire for red meat, a helpful product for this condition.
    7. Adrenal exhaustion.
    8. Too many orgasms. This depletes a woman or man’s sexual fluids.
    Read more about it here:

    1. I payed for guide. The material that contains is easily findable in wikipedia, but it is in a more verbose format in the guide. It is poorly edited -as example, the before-last page of l-carnitine the table overlays the page, so the last page is empty-. It is incomplete, as far as many important complements are not on the list -as example, complements like GABA are not in the list, neither as GABA nor as Gamma-Aminobutyric acid-.
      They said that they have a money-back guaranty, but when you look for a link, an email, or a form, there is none of them to ask for it. All that you have is the FAQ question submit, where your question gets between thousands of other unanswered questions, or a generic form “contact us” on the lower part of the page, where you can find a form with any feedback.
      Beware. This is a bad recommendation from ROK.

  5. LaLanne (the godfather of fitness) had two simple rules of nutrition: “if man made it, don’t eat it”, and “if it tastes good, spit it out.”

    1. Since I’ve been eating almost totally healthy food, I rarely have digestive problems.
      My coworkers eat terrible microwave meals and other crap for lunch and stink up the bathroom like something died in there. Disgusting!

      1. Not only that, clean eating equals blitzkreig dumps that are over almost as soon as they begin. I can always tell when I stray.

  6. LaLanne summed up his philosophy about good nutrition and exercise:
    Living is a pain in the butt. Dying is easy. It’s like an athletic event. You’ve got to train for it. You’ve got to eat right. You’ve got to exercise. Your health account, your bank account, they’re the same thing. The more you put in, the more you can take out. Exercise is king and nutrition is queen: together, you have a kingdom.

  7. Side note: Roosh mentioned using a white noise machine. I’m cursed with being a light sleeper/above average hearing, and tried a white noise machine.
    It didn’t work well. A simple white noise machine often can’t block bass notes like from human speech and music that passes through walls.
    I’ve used an MP3 of brown noise with a small stereo with speakers with good bass response (or earphones, of course) with much more success & more volume. [White noise has upper frequency sound that would keep me awake].
    Also, you can record MP3s off of YouTube nature/relaxation sound videos and use that at home to relax and mask slightly distracting noise around you. Great for napping, too!

    1. Also, all-natural sleep aids like SleepMD have worked well for me, and contain chamomille and melatonin.

  8. Considering the general state of self imposed starvation common to seemingly all non pro, self described “serious” lifters, simply getting some more food in them, regardless of in what form, is likely why many experience “results” from pretty much any old substance pawned off as some sort of “supplement.”
    If yo just eat enough high quality food, and not too much low quality stuff, you’re already 99+% of the way to optimum “nutrition” from a growth perspective. “Roots from Siberia” may sound all manners of exotic, undergroundy and hard core, but seriously; the human body evolved to utilize commonly available compounds, found almost everywhere. It’s pretty omnivorous, as long as it’s fed well.

  9. I am a light sleeper too. I sleep with soft foam earplugs in my ears every night. I’ve found they work well in blocking most kinds of noise. The kind of noise they don’t block well is deep bass. I use CVS brand ear plugs with a noise reduction rating of 30. They are colored pink and yellow. Sometimes I take a melatonin supplement to help me sleep. I’ve tried various brands of melatonin supplements and have found that Melatonex works the best for me by far.

  10. Hey Roosh,
    I wish you gave a screenshot of a reference list from the book. I’m curious about what kind of journals this book draws its research from. I wonder if the book outright debunks some popular supplements. Does it have any focus on prevention of illness or moreso treatment?
    Cool post, I’m definitely appreciating RoK lately.

  11. If ‘you plan on starting an intense workout program with a goal to greatly increase muscle mass’ then dianabol is something that definitely works.
    Actually I’ve probably tried about as many different supplement as anybody and I like to read the peer reviewed research on them and I would have to say that one supplement that sticks out as not being bullshit it alpha lipoic acid.

  12. The number one and master “supplement” is a pastured beef liver once or twice a week, preferably raw if you trust your source.

  13. (sorry for make the comment twice, i post wrongly as a response from an unrelated comment)
    I payed for guide. The material that contains is easily
    findable in wikipedia, but it is in a more verbose format in the guide.
    It is poorly edited -as example, the before-last page of l-carnitine the
    table overlays the page, so the last page is empty-. It is incomplete,
    as far as many important complements are not on the list -as example,
    complements like GABA are not in the list, neither as GABA nor as
    Gamma-Aminobutyric acid-.
    They said that they have a money-back
    guaranty, but when you look for a link, an email, or a form, there is
    none of them to ask for it. All that you have is the FAQ question
    submit, where your question gets between thousands of other unanswered
    questions, or a generic form “contact us” on the lower part of the page,
    where you can find a form with any feedback.
    Beware. This is a bad recommendation from ROK.

    1. I finnaly use the mechanism of paypal, and they fullfill his money-back guaranty. Anyway, I do not recommend this guide to anybody.

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