BrainGo! offers students a natural energy boost
Student creates an alternative natural energy supplement
Jeffrey Davidson doesn’t like feeling “shaky” when he drinks coffee. Instead, he uses Braingo! to help him focus.
BrainGo! is an alternative energy product that comes in .25-ounce flavored packets. The product is an all-natural dietary supplement, aimed at improving memory, mental support and physical energy.
Mikael Holcombe-Scali brought BrainGo! to UB last fall when he distributed over 500 samples in the Student Union. Scali, a senior business management major, is the brand manager for BrainGo!, his godfather’s company. Apart from the product’s bitter taste, students who have used it so far report feeling energized and more focused.
BrainGo!’s goal is to revolutionize and improve energy products like coffee and energy drinks. They created an edible powder that dissolves in the mouth and goes directly into the bloodstream instead of being digested.
“[Other energy products] have to pass through the digestive tract, so it takes longer to start working and some of the product is wasted,” Scali said. “So scientifically, the most efficient way for a product like this is to work is to let it dissolve in your mouth and go directly into your bloodstream.”
Scali’s godfather asked him to become brand manager after seeing his successful work with his fraternity, Pi Kappa Phi. Scali founded the Pi Kappa Phi chapter, now UB’s largest on-campus fraternity.
Scali now works to bring BrainGo! to the people. He markets and manages the product and works with major retailers on placement.
Scali and his godfather worked with experts in nutrition and psychology to make this product a reality. Their team of PhDs worked alongside the company to perfect an energy supplement with no caffeine and minimal calories and sugar.
“The whole idea is we're challenging the norm of energy products with science and a passion for health,” Scali said. “We want the product to do absolutely no harm to the human body. Most energy products have some sort of additive or caffeine; it’s basically jam-packed with all the vitamins, minerals and amino acids your body needs.”
Erick Quintanilla, a freshman exercise science major, said he was skeptical of BrainGo!’s effectiveness, but now loves the product for when he works out.
“As someone who loves to workout, I've taken plenty of pre-workouts who are packed with tons of supplements to aid your workout,” Quintanilla said. “I can easily say a single packet of BrainGo! will not just give you the energy but the laser sharp focus for every workout.”
Apart from its energizing effects, the product also aims to suppress appetite and elevate mood.
“We’re gonna market it to niche groups,” Scali said. “It has so many benefits, but if we throw a bunch of benefits at people it won’t do everything that it can do. Once we raise some more funds, we can target the advertisements to smaller groups.”
Jeffrey Davidson, a freshman business major, uses Braingo! as an alternative to caffeine to help him focus.
“I've found that it gives me energy without making me shaky like coffee,” Davidson said. “It's not the best tasting thing ever, I think if BrainGo! were to focus on improving its taste, it would be a very good product.”
Most students who use the product list taste as their only complaint.
“About 40 percent of people on the first try are a little shocked by the taste and that’s because there’s no product like it, it’s all-natural and organic and it dissolves in your mouth, so it’s kind of weird,” Scali said.
Scali said users usually adjust to the unique taste and texture of the product after the third use.
“The flavor could be made better but all in all a very solid product that will definitely deliver what it promises,” Quintanilla said.
The company is also taking its customers’ feedback and is working toward developing additional and possibly better-tasting flavors.
“We can do some flavors. We’re talking about a lot of that right now. It’s only 20 calories, but if you add sugar it raises the calories and makes it more unhealthy and we’re trying to attract a more-natural crowd,” Scali said.
The company’s experts supervise product feedback closely, according to Scali, in order to make sure it maintains its initial goals of natural, healthy energy. It is manufactured entirely in the U.S. It is available for purchase online and is available in various nutrition storefronts in New Jersey.
Lindsay Gilder is the assistant features editor and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org