Packed with vitamin B6, magnesium, and melatonin derived from tart cherry, the Transparent Labs Sleep Aid Supplement was designed to help restless sleepers go into slumber.
However, does it actually work?
To understand if this supplement works, we looked at the ingredients and respective scientific literature to determine whether they’re effective and safe to help you fall and stay asleep.
Curious to know what we found out? Feel free to read our full review on Transparent Labs Sleep Aid or just skip to the end to read the conclusion.
Transparent Labs supplements are formulated and manufactured in the United States.
The company focuses on formulating supplements with “natural” and research-backed ingredients, which means they use foods or herbs with alleged health benefits.
Transparent Labs has an intriguing line of supplements, many of which are vegan-friendly. What sets them apart from other brands is that Transparent Labs does not use proprietary blends, which suggests they are more transparent because they reveal the exact dose of each ingredient they’ve used.
They have various supplements that cover many aspects of an individual’s life, including ones that enhance one’s energy, others that aid in vision and mental acuity, and others that support physical performance.
Typically, their supplements are free from artificial sweeteners, preservatives, colorings, as well as gluten and GMOs, so they also formulate supplements taking into account the potential health risks of such properties.
Transparent Labs appears to be a brand that legitimately cares about its customers.
Transparent Labs Sleep Aid Supplement is an over the counter sleep formula containing 30 servings per container for 24.00 USD, making it one of the most cost-worthy sleep aids on the market, and you only need to re-supply once a month.
According to Transparent Labs, you should only take three capsules (equivalent to one serving) on an empty stomach, 45-minutes before you go to sleep.
In terms of ingredients, it has 8 unique ingredients: vitamin B6, magnesium, zinc, glycine, tart cherry powder, l-theanine, rutaecarpine, and melatonin. Below, we’ll analyze why these ingredients were added to the supplement, and how they work to help you sleep.
Vitamin B6 is important for many bodily functions, and there’s some evidence that links it to immune health, cognitive development, and sleep.
Research suggests that taking vitamin B6 can help you in two ways: increase seratonin and melatonin production, and it can also help you better recall your dreams. 1, 2
The hormones serotonin and melatonin are both important to achieve restful, sound sleep, and also good mood.
In fact, a lack of vitamin B6 has been linked to symptoms of insomnia and depression, which means there is a strong correlation between depression and sleep problems. This also means that taking vitamin B6 can reduce the risk of having depression. 3
Magnesium has always been known for improving bone health, but some research has popped up suggesting that it may also help us fall asleep.
In fact, a study found that subjects taking a 500 milligrams supplement of magnesium every night for eight weeks fell asleep faster and spent more time in bed than the placebo group. 4
However, it’s important to note that the sample size was small with only 47 participants. Unfortunately, other studies studying the effects of magnesium on sleep also work with small samples, therefore, it’s difficult to determine whether magnesium is beneficial for sleep.
Apparently, zinc plays a role in neurotransmitter function and in maintaining cognition.
Zinc, according to researchers, is also capable of regulating sleep. It’s not clear how it happens, but it seems to impact the latest stages of sleep, where physical restoration and memory consolidation occur. It doesn’t trigger sleep, but having adequate levels of zinc in the blood appears to shorten the time it takes to fall asleep. 5
Glycine increases serotonin levels, which is essential to creating the sleep hormone melatonin.
Research suggests that oral glycine increases serotonin levels, reduces symptoms of insomnia, and improves sleep quality. In fact, there are numerous clinical trials that show glycine’s efficacy as a natural sleep remedy, even in moderate doses like 1000 mg before going to sleep. 6, 7
There are also studies that suggest glycine can help people return to healthy sleep patterns even after a period of disrupted sleep.
Tart Cherry Powder
Tart cherries are rich, natural sources of melatonin, the sleep hormone. The basic notion behind taking melatonin from an external source is that you increase your melatonin stores for more effective sleep.
However, there’s very limited clinical evidence on using tart cherries for sleep. One study found that tart cherry juice was associated with statistically significant improvements in self-reported sleep among older adults with insomnia. 8 Still, more research is necessary as the sample size is too small (15 subjects).
L-theanine is an amino acid found in tea leaves.
Some researchers believe that l-theanine promotes relaxation and sleep by affecting different mechanisms in the brain, namely boosting levels of GABA and other calming brain chemicals, as well as reducing other chemicals associated with stress and anxiety. 9, 10
There is also evidence that l-theanine enhances alpha brain waves, which are associated with a state of “wakeful relaxation”, a state of mind you experience when meditating.
Rutaecarpine is an alkaloid isolated from Evodia rutaecarpa and related herbs with several interesting biological properties.
Some studies suggest that rutaecarpine speeds the rate at which caffeine is metabolized, which means it can eliminate caffeine more rapidly from your body. 11, 12
This formula also contains 3 mg of melatonin, which some studies show that it’s effective in restoring and promoting restful, uninterrupted sleep. 13
Let me also mention that ingredients in this formula are vegan-friendly, and do not contain artificial colors, preservatives, and sweeteners. The formula is also gluten and GMO-free.
How Much Does It Cost?
One bottle costs 24.00 USD, and comes with 30 servings of 3 capsules each. A single should last you 30 days, which means each serving costs about 0.80 USD.
Compared to many other supplements, this one is priced very affordably.
With that being said, you can still bring the price down significantly by purchasing the product bulk. In fact, Transparent Labs’ discount scheme is pretty straightforward.
|1 Bottle||2 Bottles||3 Bottles|
|24.00 USD||44.00 USD (not 48.00 USD)||67.00 USD (not 72.00 USD)|
So, we’ve looked at the brand, the ingredients and how much the supplement costs, but you’re probably still on the fence. To be quite frank, it’s difficult to give you a cut and dry answer because the research for some ingredients is not statistically significant, even though the brands preach about the supposed benefits.
Personally, I feel like this supplement has ingredients that will help you with your sleep patterns, particularly if you don’t have any issues, like insomnia.
If you’re TRULY with trouble sleeping, the best bet is to always seek out medical advice.
1 – Denholm J. Aspy et al. Effects of Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine) and a B Complex Preparation on Dreaming and Sleep, Perceptual and Motor Skills (2018). DOI: 10.1177/0031512518770326
2 – Nutr Res Pract. 2011 Jun;5(3):230-235. English. Published online June 21, 2011. https://doi.org/10.4162/nrp.2011.5.3.230
3 – Gougeon L, Payette H, Morais JA, Gaudreau P, Shatenstein B, Gray-Donald K. Intakes of folate, vitamin B6 and B12 and risk of depression in community-dwelling older adults: the Quebec Longitudinal Study on Nutrition and Aging. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2016 Mar;70(3):380-5. doi: 10.1038/ejcn.2015.202. Epub 2015 Dec 9. PMID: 26648330.
4 – Gougeon L, Payette H, Morais JA, Gaudreau P, Shatenstein B, Gray-Donald K. Intakes of folate, vitamin B6 and B12 and risk of depression in community-dwelling older adults: the Quebec Longitudinal Study on Nutrition and Aging. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2016 Mar;70(3):380-5. doi: 10.1038/ejcn.2015.202. Epub 2015 Dec 9. PMID: 26648330.
5 – Cherasse Y, Urade Y. Dietary Zinc Acts as a Sleep Modulator. Int J Mol Sci. 2017 Nov 5;18(11):2334. doi: 10.3390/ijms18112334. PMID: 29113075; PMCID: PMC5713303.
6 – Bannai M, Kawai N. New therapeutic strategy for amino acid medicine: glycine improves the quality of sleep. J Pharmacol Sci. 2012;118(2):145-8. doi: 10.1254/jphs.11r04fm. Epub 2012 Jan 27. PMID: 22293292.
7 – Yamadera, W., Inagawa, K., Chiba, S. et al. Glycine ingestion improves subjective sleep quality in human volunteers, correlating with polysomnographic changes. Sleep Biol. Rhythms 5, 126–131 (2007). https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1479-8425.2007.00262.x
8 – Pigeon WR, Carr M, Gorman C, Perlis ML. Effects of a tart cherry juice beverage on the sleep of older adults with insomnia: a pilot study. J Med Food. 2010 Jun;13(3):579-83. doi: 10.1089/jmf.2009.0096. PMID: 20438325; PMCID: PMC3133468.
9 – Kim S, Jo K, Hong KB, Han SH, Suh HJ. GABA and l-theanine mixture decreases sleep latency and improves NREM sleep. Pharm Biol. 2019 Dec;57(1):65-73. doi: 10.1080/13880209.2018.1557698. PMID: 30707852; PMCID: PMC6366437.
10 – J.M. Everett, D. Gunathilake, L. Dufficy, P. Roach, J. Thomas, D. Upton, N. Naumovski, Theanine consumption, stress and anxiety in human clinical trials: A systematic review, Journal of Nutrition & Intermediary Metabolism, Volume 4, 2016, Pages 41-42, ISSN 2352-3859, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jnim.2015.12.308.
11 – Seo, Young-Min & Noh, Keumhan & Kong, Min-Jeong & Lee, Dae-Hun & Kang, Mi-Jeong & Jahng, Yurng-Dong & Kang, Won-Ku & Jeong, Byeong-Seon & Jeong, Tae-Cheon. (2011). Effects of Rutaecarpine on the Pharmacokinetics of Caffeine and Its Three Metabolites in Rats. Biomolecules and Therapeutics. 19. 10.4062/biomolther.2011.19.2.243.
12 – Shan QY, Sang XN, Hui H, Shou QY, Fu HY, Hao M, Liu KH, Zhang QY, Cao G, Qin LP. Processing and Polyherbal Formulation of Tetradium ruticarpum (A. Juss.) Hartley: Phytochemistry, Pharmacokinetics, and Toxicity. Front Pharmacol. 2020 Mar 6;11:133. doi: 10.3389/fphar.2020.00133. PMID: 32210796; PMCID: PMC7067890.
13 – Brzezinski, Amnon & Vangel, Mark & Wurtman, Judith & Norrie, Gillian & Zhdanova, Irina & Ben-Shushan, Abraham & Ford, Ian. (2005). Effects of Exogenous Melatonin on Sleep: A Meta-Analysis. Sleep medicine reviews. 9. 41-50. 10.1016/j.smrv.2004.06.004.
Top 2 Vegan Recommendations in 2021
- This is hands down our favorite vegan supplement. It’s not your typical multivitamin because it was created from vegans to vegans. It contains vitamin B12, vitamin D, and the Omega-3 fatty acids (DHA & EPA). These ingredients are delivered in the right doses, so that you never have to worry about a potential deficiency in the future. Feel free to read my review on the supplement as well.
- Our second recommendation is this amazing vegan starter kit. It is actually a bundle with 9 e-books that will help you lead a healthy, vegan lifestyle. It has great advice, and it includes print-outs and checklists that will allow you to easily put theory into practice, particularly if you’re new to the vegan lifestyle. This is a recommendation I’ve also included in my essential vegan products page as well.