6 OXO (R) is no longer on the market and sadly the day of steroidal anti-estrogens is setting into the sunset, luckily there is a new generation of plant based testosterone boosters that rival these strong products and give even 6 OXO a run for its money. 6 OXO was once the most potent testosterone booster on the market and it was a pioneer for its time. Sadly, like most hormonal items, professional sports was to be the ultimate downfall for this wonder supplement.
What is 6 OXO?
6 OXO has many names on the market, 6-keto-androstenedione, Androstene3,6,17 trione, 4-Androstene-3,6,17-trione, 4-AT and a even 4-etioallocholen – 3,6, 17-trione. All of these refer to the same chemical compound that is a steroidal testosterone booster/anti-aromatase agent. First identified in cow adrenal glands it was further found to be a natural metabolite of androstenedione metabolism in humans and most mammals. This makes 6 OXO a perfectly legal dietary supplement under the current DSHEA law and since it is not androgenic, not at all an anabolic steroid. What 6 OXO does is reduce an enzyme in the body that turns your testosterone into estrogen. By blocking this enzyme two major things happen, first it causes you to keep more of your testosterone and second, the body senses a lack of estrogen and causes the testes to release more testosterone.
6 OXO has been well studied in men and the original manufacturer of 6 OXO, Ergopharm Inc actually paid for quite a few studies in both men and rats. The most telling one was done by Incledon, which studied 6 OXO in doses of 300mg in healthy men, then measured the effects. The Incledon study found a boost of testosterone of about 200% with a slight reduction in estradiol, which means it was very effective at boosting testosterone while reducing estrogen. This was the first really well tested testosterone booster on the market. Baylor University did a follow up study and found very little difference in supplementing with 300mg of 6 OXO and 600mg of 6 OXO on the effects of both testosterone and estrogen, meaning the sweet spot for most men is around 3-400mg. 6 OXO came in 100mg capsules in bottles of 60 pills, meaning at 300mg a single bottle would last only 10 days, making it a very expensive, yet effective supplement. 6 OXO was proven to be naturally occurring in humans and many animals used for food, but that didn’t stop this most effective supplement from getting attacked by the FDA and the federal government.
The manufacturer, Proviant/Ergopharm was consistently being hounded by reports of people and athletes testing positive for androstenedione. This makes total sense since 6 OXO is made from andro and also is a metabolite of androstenedione. This means that 6 OXO both contains trace amounts of the schedule III prohormone and also is checked for when a standard blood panel is submitted for steroid drug testing. This misclassification of 6 OXO lead to it coming under heavy fire from the industry, the anti-doping establishment and other sports lobbying organizations as an enemy of the state. This safe and effective supplement became villainized as the cause of many a failed drug test. In 2009 the situation came to a head when Phillies baseball player J.C. Romero tested positive for steroids and claimed that he used only 6 OXO that he bought from a local GNC outlet. Even though the bottle contained on it a very strict warning, Romero still claimed that he had been duped and wrongly sold the product. Sadly this was the final straw in a very ugly government crackdown on the ingredient and the FDA and DEA raided Proviant in 2009, causing the final demise of the company. The major supplement retailers discontinued the product, further hurting Proviant and the lawsuit from Romero put the nail in the coffin. 6 OXO, arguably one of the safest and most effective products on the market was no more.
Finally, the product 6 OXO was found to contain trace amounts of androstenedione, the famous “andro” in the Mark McGwire controversy. These trace amounts are technically illegal, but it is very unlikely that the manufacturer intentionally spiked the product with this ingredient since it didn’t produce results at even 100X the contaminated amount. What probably happened is that small amounts of material didn’t react during manufacturing. Charges were threatened against Pat Arnold the maker of 6 OXO, but as far as I know, no charges were ever brought against him. Pat Arnold was the chemist behind “The Clear” and “The Cream” which were illegal steroidal drugs allegedly given to professional athletes to help them cheat at sports.
After it’s own lengthy battle over the main ingredient in 6 OXO, LG Sciences released a new product designed to take up the former product’s reins as the king of testosterone boosters. Formadrol Extreme is the product and it has all of the glory of the former 6 OXO product and some new twists that make it possibly even more effective at boosting testosterone. Formadrol Extreme has two aromatase inhibitors similar to 6 OXO but even stronger at reducing this testosterone killing enzyme. These two aromatase inhibitors are joined by Ellagic Acid, which is shown in preliminary studies to be a natural SERM, meaning it can block another form of estrogen effect and boost testosterone. Finally, a potent ginger extract is included to rev up the testes and cause them to produce more testosterone. This combination has actually produced results in one person that was even higher than the original 6 OXO and in an unfunded test, one person successfully used Formadrol to recover from a cycle of anabolic steroids and double his testosterone levels. These preliminary results meant that Formadrol has all of the testosterone boosting effects of 6 OXO and yet is non-steroidal, meaning you won’t test positive on a drug test. Sadly 6 OXO is gone, but a new challenger has arisen to take it’s place and like everything, nature hates a vacuum. LG Sciences has not only replaced 6 OXO but has done one better, giving even stronger results at boosting testosterone levels without being a metabolite of androstenedione. This makes Formadrol the new king of testosterone boosters and the only product on the market to meet all of my criteria for reducing estrogen and boosting testosterone.