In the world of supplements, there are products marketed as fat burners that indirectly support weight loss… and then there are serious supplements that can help you oxidize legitimate amounts of fat.
This one is the latter of those two. A true-to-its-name, real-deal fat burner. It won’t be for everyone — it won’t even be for all of the brand’s target demographic. But if it’s for you, then look out, because it’s going to be strong.
On this blog, we’ve been honored to cover Matt Jansen and Dr. Domenic Iacovone’s two supplement brands, Revive MD and RAW Nutrition. One of the features of these brands that we continuously enjoy touting is the fact that the vast majority of their supplements are tested for banned substances for drug-tested athletes.
RAW Ignite is a fat burner that won’t be tested for banned performance-enhancers, because it has already-banned ingredients, as well as an ingredient so powerful that if it hasn’t been outright banned in all sports yet, it will be soon.
But not only does it break RAW’s mold, it breaks the trend of “fat burners” that don’t directly burn fat. Like all RAW Nutrition supplements, this one’s a powerhouse, so much that it’s likely only to be seen at your local retailer. If you like what you’re seeing, you may want to call them up and get it in stock there. But first, it’s best that you understand this ingredient label, because it’s coming strong:
Pack your moon bags and get ready to fly high with this one! Even if you think you’re an expert, you may want to start at one or two capsules, because the full three capsule serving (2.23 grams worth – these caps won’t be small) is coming strong with several lipolytic stimulants:
Acetyl L-Carnitine – 1g
Acetyl L-Carnitine, or ALCAR, is our favorite source of carnitine when considering all of its benefits. L-carnitine is a molecule involved in fatty-acid transport – it gets them to the mitochondria, your cell “powerhouses”, to be burned for energy. Carnitine deficiency causes a slowdown in fatty acid utilization, because it can’t get burnt if it can’t get delivered to the site where it’s used!
Since carnitine is most commonly found in meat, vegetarians / vegans and older folks may experience the most direct fat loss benefits from supplementation (since they are most deficient).[2,3] However, there is a third type of person who is often low on carnitine stores — hard-charging athletes and workout warriors! Carnitine has been shown to assist with athletic recovery as well as fatty acid transport.[1,4]
The additional acetyl group in Acetyl L-Carnitine means that ALCAR can cross the blood brain barrier — which also allows it to act as a focus-enhancing nootropic. ALCAR is likely included in Ignite to combat “diet fog”, since ALCAR supplementation may enhance focus, improve memory recall, and provide neuroprotection.[6-8] 1g is right around the dose we look for – and larger than what we see in most capsule formulations.
In addition, ALCAR is likely a preferred form for low-carb dieters (who already have their MCT transporters up-regulated) since that bonus acetyl group may help in the formation of new acetyl-CoA molecules, which will help with ketone production when the body is beta-oxidizing that fat.
Green Tea Extract (Camellia Sinensis) (leaf)(98% Polyphenols) (std. To 50% EGCG) – 500mg
Green tea extract is highly regarded for its numerous health benefits and is frequently used in fat burners because it’s rich in polyphenols and catechins. Of the catechins contained in its leaves, EGCG is the most well known and well studied.
EGCG supports lipolytic actions in the body, enabling you to better burn fat for fuel.[10,11] You can accelerate these fat burning properties when using it alongside caffeine, and that’s another well-dosed ingredient in Ignite (at 300 milligrams).
EGCG also has the ability to block carb absorption to some degree, although we don’t really suggest reliance upon that effect. The compound can inhibit the body’s absorption of certain types of carbohydrates thanks to its interactions with digestive enzymes.
Ultimately, green tea extract is a mild fat burner, and we’re happy to see it in a formula so long as the supplement doesn’t use it as its primary fat burner. In the case of Ignite, it’s probably the weakest lipolytic agent of them all, so we’re happy to see it included alongside the other heavy hitters coming up.
Caffeine Anhydrous – 300mg
It’s well-known what caffeine will do for your energy levels, the question is how high of a dose you want, and how often. In this case, we’re getting 100 milligrams per capsule, allowing you to dose safely. Even if you think you can handle all 300 milligrams, we don’t suggest taking three capsules until you’ve assessed one or two capsules first — there are some very powerful stimulants to follow.
In terms of weight loss, on top of boosting mental and physical energy, caffeine can help suppress appetite and enhance heat production.[14,15] It does this by inhibiting adenosine,[14,15] a principle compound that downregulates the brain and induces fatigue and ultimately, sleep. Reducing adenosine thus wakes you up – at least for a while!
Caffeine also downregulates phosphodiesterase, an enzyme that breaks down cAMP (cyclic adenosine monophosphate).[14,15] cAMP plays a major role in the metabolism of lipids and carbohydrates. Ultimately, keeping cAMP high keeps you primed for fat loss, and caffeine helps with that, upregulating metabolism and helping to suppress appetite.
With the basics of carnitine, green tea, and caffeine covered… now it’s time for the fun to start:
N-Phenethyl-dimethylamine citrate – 150mg
N-phenethyl dimethylamine (DMPEA) is a feel-great stimulant we’ve seen in several pre workout supplements, but is more rare in fat burners. It first arrived on the market in 2014, and is one of the best phenylethylamine (PEA) sources thanks to its effects.
Standard PEA is a feel-good stimulant, but it is far too quickly broken down by monoamine oxidase (MAO) and doesn’t last long enough for our liking. But the effect is what we’d like, as the euphoria generated will provide energy and may suppress appetite.
DMPEA is the solution to PEA’s poor plasma longevity, thanks to its structural addition of two alkyl groups that help it resist the MAO enzyme’s effects. The longer half-life provided will keep you going longer, and is a sign of things to come in this supplement’s label.
150mg is a perfect dose for a fat burner – especially since we don’t see it in fat burners very often anyway! While there are no clinically-demonstrated weight loss effects, we believe this stimulant will provide energy, euphoria, and anecdotally, may diminish appetite.
This is one of the ingredients that makes us warn drug-tested athletes not to use Ignite – PEA is banned by WADA under section “S6 stimulants”.
You can learn more in our article titled Eria Jarensis Extract / N-phenethyl dimethylamine: The Next Big Thing?
Hordenine HCl – 150mg
The first of three stimulants that work as beta agonists, hordenine kicks it off at a very solid 150mg dose – three times what we often see in other supplements. It’s found in bitter orange, barley, and other plants.
Hordenine is here for two reasons:
It functions as a beta adrenergic agonist, which means it can kick-starts the “flight or fight” process and mobilize fatty acids (and other stimulating neurotransmitters) for immediate use as a fuel source.
It functions as a MAO inhibitor.[19,20] Mentioned above, the monoamine oxidase enzyme breaks down PEA, bringing dopamine levels back to normal more quickly. With this serious dose of hordenine, the N-phenethyl dimethylamine will last longer and hit harder.
This dual-prong approach makes it a very powerful play in Ignite, but the dose is what still brings the strongest impression. You’ll generally see it in the 30-60mg… but not with Ignite! Note, however, that a few nootropic products do include it at 200mg, so we’ve also seen higher. This just definitely on the high end though.
Higenamine HCl – 75mg
Higenamine is the second of our three beta agonists, and once again, it’s dosed a bit above average. It’s been shown to have anti-asthmatic effects as a bronchodilator, which is likely the main reason why it’s banned for drug-tested athletes.
The above effects are due to its mechanism as a beta(2)-adrenergic agonist, and it can relax (or dilate) the eyes, arterioles, lungs, and other bodily functions. The ingredient is structurally similar to ephedrine and synephrine, and studies have stated that “when combined with caffeine and yohimbe bark extract, higenamine increases both lipolysis and energy expenditure, as evidenced by a significant increase in circulation free fatty acids and kilocalories”.
Interestingly, higenamine increases acetylcholine release by way of the same mechanisms mentioned above, so there may be some additional nootropic potential to go along with the ALCAR and DMPEA above (and the Huperzine A below).
Anecdotally, the strongest effect we see from higenamine is its appetite suppression, especially when combined with caffeine. However, this has not been demonstrated in a clinical setting.
We normally see higenamine dosed from 25-75mg. Once again, we’re on the high end here, which leads us to reiterate our recommendations not to start out at three capsules!
Theobromine – 50mg
Theobromine comes from theobroma cacao, and we’ve seen some helpful effects with it. Like green tea extract, we consider it a “secondary ingredient” that we’re happy to have in a fat burner, so long as we have other stronger compounds alongside it like we do with Ignite.
Theobromine is a structural cousin to caffeine (they are both classified as methylxanthines), and research shows that it shares the same mechanism of action as caffeine discussed above – it inhibits both phosphodiesterase and adenosine. It also has a slight stimulatory effect, but with a longer half-life than caffeine, so it lasts longer in your system.
One interesting study comparing caffeine and theobromine showed that it significantly increased “feel”, which we find important to many users looking for an experiential supplement.
Given this profile, it is without a doubt that Ignite will be felt! Especially from the next few ingredients:
LeanGBB (Gamma Butyrobetaine) – 30mg
Enter the sweat effect!
There are two main ways to use supplements to increase your carnitine levels:
Take a form of L-carnitine
Take a carnitine precursor
RAW Nutrition’s Ignite does both. We’ve already discussed the acetyl l-carnitine above, but now now we get gamma butyrobetaine (GBB) as a way to get our bodies to generate even more. Reason being, GBB is a pro-carnitine ingredient, thanks to the help of the gamma-butyrobetaine dioxygenase (BBD) enzyme.[30,31]
But the real reason it’s included in fat burners is because it makes many people sweat, and when training, some of us love that effect!
There are other benefits covered in our article titled GBB (Gamma-Butyrobetaine Ethyl Ester): Super Carnitine That Makes You Sweat?! — just realize that if you’re sweating more than usual when taking RAW Ignite… this is likely the reason why.
N-Isopropylnorsynephrine – 18mg
In the intro, we complained about “fat burners” that don’t really oxidize fat, providing only secondary support ingredients. N-Isopropylnorsynephrine is a main reason why Ignite is not one of those supplements. If you thought hordenine and higenamine were impressive, then it’s time to get into one of the industry’s most powerful compounds.
We more commonly see isopropylnorsynephrine in pre workouts, and quite honestly, we’re not sure why – because this ingredient belongs in fat burners!
When ephedrine’s ban was complete in 2006, formulators had already been on the hunt for natural replacements. Bitter Orange extract was the primary one, with five major constituents (synephrine, octopamine, hordenine, tyramine and N-methyl-tyramine). You should already recognize hordenine there, but synephrine is another powerful fat loss agent.
100x stronger than synephrine?!
But there’s a variation of synephrine that is even more powerful – isopropylnorsynephrine. We’ll just paste the name of the study itself, which tells you everything you need to know: “A Stronger Lipolytic Agent in Human Adipocytes than Synephrine and Other Amines Present in Citrus aurantium”.
In fact, the researches themselves stated the following: “Notably, isopropylnorsynephrine elicited lipolytic responses with a high inter-individual variability but with an approximately 100-fold higher potency than synephrine“.
Like hordenine and higenamine, the ingredient stimulates the β-Adrenergic Receptors, initiating the flight or flight response, mobilizing fat and activating lipolysis. Going above and beyond hordenine and higenamine, however, it’s also enhanced by IBMX (3-isobutyl-1-methylxanthine), resulting in an overproduction of cAMP (cyclic AMP). This yields energy.
Researchers were even able to use this ingredient to overcome anti-lipolytic ingredients in lab settings — it’s so strong that it stops compounds that stop fat burning! However, it does it differently than yohimbine, which means we still have some great stackability with the next ingredient below.
The research goes a long way back
Although it may seem like a fringe ingredient, it has been tested on rats, dogs, humans, and rabbits, going as far back as 1948, and the research showed it to be highly lipolytic and “lipid mobilizing” but with strong safety profiles.[33-38] In fact, the LD50 in mice was shown as 370mg/kg i.p. and 144mg/kg i.v.
Interestingly, rabbit and human studies listed above didn’t find an increase in blood pressure – even in intravenous settings![35,36,39]
Dosage-wise, we generally like to see 10-20mg, and RAW Nutrition keeps the trend going with Ignite, settling for 18mg on the upper end. Note that we’ve seen some earlier documents report a max usage of 80mg total per day, but we’d never venture into that territory with such a powerful ingredient.
Long story short – when it comes to burning fat, synephrine is good, but isopropylnorsynephrine is insane.
Rauwolscine (Rauwolfia Vomitoria Root Extract) (std. Min 90% Alpha Yohimbine) – 3mg
Also commonly known as alpha yohimbine, rauwolscine comes from Rauwolfia Vomitoria, and this is often the strongest-felt ingredient in a supplement — as hard as that may be to believe with the profile above.
Rauwolscine is what we consider to be a stronger form of yohimbine, which is a stimulant and metabolic booster in its own right. They both work by blocking alpha-2 receptors, and it’s an intense ingredient.
If you can tolerate the potent rauwolscine, you’ll be able to enjoy some serious energy-boosting and fat-loss properties that come along with the ingredient.
Since this extract contains 90% rauwolscine by weight, you’re getting a quite high 2.7mg dose — further cementing our suggestion to start with one or two capsules.
Huperzine A 1% (Huperzia Serrata Leaf Extract) – 100mcg
Finally, we see some cognitive support, as Huperzine A is used to keep acetylcholine levels high. We saw acetylcholine (known as “the learning neurotransmitter”) when discussing higenamine, and may also get a cognitive boost from ALCAR.
Hard dieting and training may deplete acetylcholine levels, but huperzine A functions as an acetylcholinesterase inhibitor, so it inhibits the enzyme that breaks acetylcholine down in the body.[42,43]
Due to that effect, research has demonstrated that huperzine A supplementation may enhance cognitive function and learning which makes sense if it prolongs acetylcholine’s life.
Now that is a fat burner.
We said it many times, but we’ll say it again: start light. This is three capsules per serving, but you’ll be very wise to spread those out throughout the day, and not take one too late unless you want sleep to be affected.
RAW Nutrition suggests 1-2 capsules for an entire week before moving on to a full serving, so this bottle should definitely last you longer than a month.
Since this formula is so strong, we obviously do not suggest stacking this with RAW Burn, RAW Nutrition’s fat burning drink powder. But we do suggest you stack it with RAW Pump before training.
So is it the strongest fat burner ever? We’re not so sure about that, but if it’s not, it’s gotta be close… and it’s definitely the strongest one we’ve covered in a long while!
While RAW Burn is an incredible appetite-smashing weight loss powder, every brand needs to consider a strong capsule based fat burner in their arsenal as well. With Ignite, they came out and smashed it out of the park.
We hope we’ve conveyed to you how strong this supplement is going to be. They not only went with three beta-adrenergic agonists, they went with high doses of them. So don’t be fooled by the two relatively benign ingredients up top – this isn’t your mom’s typical “green tea fat burner” that has some L-carnitine and a pinch of caffeine.
Raw Ignite is the “holy smokes” of weight loss supplements, and not everyone will be able to handle it. But if you can, then get over to your retailer and support some local business and prepare to blast off — RAW Ignite’s going to be a wild ride.