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Beyond Raw LIT Pre-Workout Review: A Moderately-Priced Supplement That Provides Good Value
Medically Reviewed by Natalie Olsen, MS, RDN
Published on May 31, 2022
Beyond Raw LIT is a pre-workout product designed to increase focus, intensity, and nitric oxide production. While it contains many effective ingredients to support these claims, not all the ingredients are clinically dosed as the product suggests.
What Is Beyond Raw LIT Pre-Workout
Beyond Raw LIT is a pre-workout supplement designed to be taken before your workout.
It contains a variety of ingredients to help you train with focus and intensity.
Some of these ingredients include:
- Beta-Alanine: An amino acid that delays muscle fatigue and enhances recovery from high-intensity exercise. (1)
- Creatine Monohydrate: A compound that increases energy production and leads to gains in muscle size and strength. (2)
- Caffeine: A nervous system stimulant that enhances alertness, improves concentration, and reduces muscle fatigue. (3)
- Ancient Peat and Apple Extract: A proprietary blend of two extracts that increases energy production. (4)
- Coffee Fruit Extract: An extract of coffee fruit that increases levels of a protein in the brain that is vital to learning and memory. (5)
- Citrulline: An amino acid that enhances strength and power by increasing blood flow and nutrient delivery to muscles. (6)
- Arginine Silicate Inositol: A compound that dilates blood vessels and increases blood flow, similar to citrulline. (7)
Beyond Raw LIT contains 30–60 servings per container and you can choose from several flavors.
The directions recommend mixing one scoop in 8 fluid ounces (240 mL) of cold water and drinking pre-workout.
The product doesn’t specify how soon you should drink it before your workout, but within 15–30 minutes is generally recommended for other pre-workout products.
The directions also suggest taking the product on non-training days for additional energy and focus.
Pre-workouts like Beyond Raw LIT are best mixed in a glass using a stirring utensil like a spoon, but you can use a shaker cup for mixing as well.
Beyond Raw LIT is produced by General Nutrition Corporation (GNC), a retailer of dietary supplements for weight loss, strength and performance, and overall health.
Beyond Raw is just one of GNC’s many brands of supplements. They also sell other popular supplement brands online and in-store.
Beyond Raw LIT is a pre-workout supplement that contains a variety of ingredients intended to increase nitric oxide and help you train with focus and intensity.
Is It Effective?
Beyond Raw LIT claims to support pump and nitric oxide production and deliver increased energy and focus.
No study has directly examined these purported benefits, but the ingredients in Beyond Raw LIT have evidence to support these claims.
Supports Pump and Nitric Oxide Production
Beyond Raw LIT contains a citrulline and arginine silicate inositol for pump and nitric oxide support.
A pump is a phenomenon brought on by the increase in blood flow to the muscles during weightlifting that temporarily increases muscle size and vascularity.
Nitric oxide is a major driver of muscle pumps because it relaxes the inner muscle of blood vessels, causing them to widen and increase blood flow.
Both citrulline and arginine are involved in producing nitric oxide, which in addition to pumps, can also increase exercise performance. (8)
A review of 8 studies found that supplementing with 6–8 grams of citrulline malate 40–60 minutes before exercise led to significant increases in muscle strength and power compared with placebo. (9)
As a dietary supplement, citrulline can be taken as free-form citrulline or citrulline malate, which is citrulline bound to malic acid, a substance naturally found in certain fruits.
Both forms are equal for the purposes of increasing nitric oxide, but while citrulline malate is more common in sports supplements, Beyond Raw LIT uses free-form citrulline. (10, 9)
Due to the weight of the malate molecule, 1.8 grams of citrulline malate is equal to 1 gram of free-form citrulline. (11, 12)
Each serving of Beyond Raw LIT provides 3 grams of citrulline, equal to about 5.4 grams of citrulline malate, which is slightly less than the minimum 6-gram effective dose as suggested by the current evidence.
Still, 3 grams of citrulline can support nitric oxide production, but it may not be enough to lead to optimal gains in strength and power. (9)
Arginine Silicate Inositol
The second ingredient intended to support pump and nitric oxide production is arginine silicate inositol.
This ingredient contains arginine bound to silicate, a trace mineral that increases the absorption of arginine. (13)
Arginine itself as a supplement is poorly absorbed since a large percentage of it is broken down before it reaches the bloodstream. (13)
As such, arginine silicate inositol is more effective than arginine alone for increasing nitric oxide levels and delivering more oxygen and nutrients to working muscles.
This form of arginine in a dose of 1.5 grams — the same dose supplied by a serving of Beyond Raw LIT — has also been shown to increase blood flow in the brain of a small number of healthy participants, resulting in improved cognition and memory. (7)
One study demonstrated that the combined effects of 1.5 grams of arginine silicate inositol and 8 grams of citrulline malate (4.4 grams of free-form citrulline) significantly increased the dilation of blood vessels.
The authors of the study suggested this could lead to potential improvements in exercise performance. (14)
Delivers Increased Energy and Focus
Beyond Raw LIT provides several ingredients intended to increase energy and focus.
The first ingredient is beta-alanine, supplying 3.2 grams per serving.
Beta-alanine works by increasing muscle carnosine concentrations to buffer the acids produced within the muscles that promote fatigue during high-intensity exercise. (1)
In this way, beta-alanine allows you to exercise more intensely before you tire.
The anti-fatigue benefits of beta-alanine are only experienced after supplementing with a dose of 3.2–6.4 grams per day for 2–4 weeks. (15)
The second ingredient is creatine monohydrate, one of the most researched and effective sports supplements on the market. (2)
Creatine monohydrate increases energy production and has consistently been shown to significantly increase muscle strength, size, and power. (2)
Unfortunately, Beyond Raw LIT only provides 1.5 grams of creatine monohydrate per serving, far less than the 3–5-gram dose recommended to deliver performance benefits. (2)
The third ingredient for increasing energy and focus is caffeine.
Caffeine is a nervous system stimulant that delays fatigue and decreases how hard you feel like your body is working.
A review of 21 meta-analyses demonstrated that caffeine in the range of 0.45–2.73 mg per pound (1–6 mg per kilogram) could increase endurance, muscle strength, power, jumping performance, and speed. (16)
This caffeine dose range translates to 68–410 mg of caffeine for a 150-pound (68.2-kg) person.
Beyond Raw LIT provides a dose close to the middle of this range at 250 mg of caffeine per serving.
Ancient Peat and Apple Extract
The remaining two ingredients, ancient peat and apple extract and coffee fruit extract, are less studied for their purported benefits of delivering energy and focus.
The proprietary blend of ancient peat and apple extract has been shown to increase levels of ATP, a molecule that your body uses for energy.
In this way, the extract may increase energy levels and, therefore, your ability to exercise with more intensity, which may translate to improvements in muscle strength and power.
Indeed, one small study involving 25 males found that participants who supplemented with 150 mg of ancient peat and apple extract experienced greater increases in strength and power compared with the placebo after eight weeks. (4)
Coffee Fruit Extract
The other ingredient is an extract produced from coffee fruit, also known as coffee cherry or coffee berry.
Coffee fruit is rich in plant-based compounds called polyphenols, which have potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects.
These polyphenols have been suggested to increase alertness, decrease fatigue, and increase levels of a certain protein in the brain that supports memory and learning. (5, 17)
Coffee fruit extract contains less than 2% of caffeine by weight or less than 2 mg per serving of Beyond Raw LIT. (17)
No study to date has examined the potential benefits of the coffee fruit extract for exercise, but it’s possible that the extract may allow for better focus so you can get more out of your workouts.
Support for Claimed Benefits
Beyond Raw LIT provides several ingredients purported to support pump and nitric oxide production as well as deliver increased energy and focus.
However, some of these ingredients (like citrulline) are slightly underdosed, while others (like ancient peat and apple extract and coffee fruit extract) have limited evidence to support their use claims. Here’s our verdict:
|Supports pump and nitric oxide production||3/5|
|Delivers increased energy and focus||3/5|
Side Effects and Safety
No study has directly examined the safety of Beyond Raw LIT.
However, Beyond Raw LIT contains ingredients that have a strong safety profile and is therefore likely safe for most people. (18)
Still, some users may experience mild side effects such as skin reactions, insomnia, and nausea. (19)
Beyond Raw LIT contains 3.2 grams of beta-alanine per serving, which is enough to cause paresthesia, a phenomenon that causes a tingling or prickling sensation, usually felt in the hands, arms, and face. (20)
Paresthesia is harmless and usually disappears within 60–90 minutes of supplementation. (20)
Caffeine is the other ingredient that may cause adverse side effects in some people, especially those who don’t regularly consume caffeine.
Adverse side effects of caffeine may cause anxiety, sleeping problems, irritability, stomach upset, and an elevated or irregular heart rate. (21)
Beyond Raw LIT provides 250 mg of caffeine per serving, equivalent to about 2.5 eight-ounce cups (600 mL) of coffee, more than enough to produce these side effects. (22)
A safe daily caffeine limit is around 400 mg per day for healthy adults, so keep this in mind if you consume other sources of caffeine like soda, coffee, tea, or energy drinks. (23)
Beyond Raw LIT is also sweetened and colored with artificial ingredients.
While these ingredients haven’t consistently been shown to be harmful to your health, some people may be sensitive or intolerant to them. (24)
Some of GNC’s other products are third-party tested to ensure they contain the ingredients in the amounts claimed on the label without impurities, but it’s unknown whether Beyond Raw LIT is subjected to this same testing.
Beyond Raw LIT is likely safe for most people, but it may cause paresthesia and caffeine-related side effects such as anxiety, sleeping problems, and stomach upset, especially in those who don’t regularly consume caffeine.
Cost and Where to Buy
Beyond Raw LIT is sold in GNC stores and online at GNC.com and Amazon.com.
You can pick up the product for $45 for 30 servings ($1.50 per serving) or $75.00 for 60 servings ($1.25 per serving).
If you purchase the product online from GNC, you can get a 10% discount with free shipping if you subscribe to automatically receive the product every 30, 34, 60, 90, 120, or 180 days.
You can also sign up for a GNC reward program — in-store or online — to receive additional benefits, such as cashback rewards, samples, free shipping, and other exclusive discounts.
GNC allows you to return or exchange the pre-workout within 30 days if you decide it’s not right for you.
You can also find Beyond Raw LIT on Amazon.com for around the same price as in GNC stores and on the GNC website.
You can purchase Beyond Raw LIT in GNC stores and online at GNC.com or Amazon.com. The pre-workout provides 30–60 servings per tub and costs in the range of $45–$75 ($1.25–$1.50 per serving).
How Beyond Raw LIT Compares with Alternatives
Many people turn to pre-workout products for extra energy and to get more out of their workouts.
Indeed, pre-workouts are one of the most popular sports nutrition categories, with dozens of different products to choose from.
Here’s a look at how Beyond Raw LIT compares with other popular pre-workout products, including a more potent form of Beyond Raw LIT called Beyond Raw LIT AF:
|Product||Key Ingredients||Servings||Price (per serving)|
|Beyond Raw LIT||
Creatine: 1.5 g
Beta-Alanine: 3.2 g
Citrulline: 3 g
Arginine Silicate Inositol: 1.5 g
Ancient Peat & Apple Extract: 150 mg
Coffee Fruit Extract: 100 mg
Caffeine: 250 mg
($1.50 per serving)
|Beyond Raw LIT AF||
Creatine: 2 g
Beta-Alanine: 3.2 g
Citrulline Malate: 8 g
Arginine Silicate Inositol: 1.5 g
Ancient Peat & Apple Extract: 400 mg
Alpha-GPC: 150 mg
Caffeine: 300 mg
($2.40 per serving)
Beta-Alanine: 3.6 g
Citrulline Malate: 8 g
Betaine: 2.5 g
Alpha-GPC: 300 mg
Theanine: 350 mg
Caffeine: 350 mg
($1.66 per serving)
Creatine HCL: 2 g
Citrulline Malate: 6 g
Beta-Alanine: 2 g
Betaine: 1.5 g
Alpha-GPC: 150 mg
Caffeine: 300 mg
($1.63 per serving)
|Optimum Nutrition Pre-Workout||
Creatine Monohydrate: 3 g
Beta-Alanine: 1.5 g
L-Citrulline: 750 mg
Caffeine: 175 mg
($1.17 per serving)
Creatine Nitrate: 1 g
Beta-Alanine: 1.6 g
Arginine Alpha Ketoglutarate: 1 g
Caffeine: 150 mg
($1.00 per serving)
All prices were pulled from Amazon for consistency.
Beyond Raw LIT is moderately priced but contains smaller doses of certain ingredients compared with other pre-workout products.
Popular Pre-Workout Supplements We Reviewed
Frequently Asked Questions
What does Beyond Raw LIT do?
Beyond Raw LIT is a pre-workout that can support pump and nitric oxide, as well as increase energy and focus.
Is Beyond Raw LIT a stimulant?
Yes, each serving of Beyond Raw LIT provides 250 mg of the stimulant caffeine.
Does Beyond Raw LIT make you tingle?
Beyond Raw LIT contains beta-alanine, which can cause tingling and flushing sensations to the hands, arms, and face.
Can you take Beyond Raw LIT twice a day?
The directions recommend taking one serving. Taking two servings will cause you to exceed the safe daily limit for caffeine consumption.
The Bottom Line
Beyond Raw LIT is a pre-workout product produced by GNC.
It contains several ingredients in amounts that have moderate evidence to support the product’s claims of producing pumps and nitric oxide, as well as increasing energy and focus.
Beyond Raw LIT is likely safe for most people, but it may cause minor adverse side effects such as a tingling and flushing sensation to the hands, arms, and face.
It can also cause caffeine-related side effects, including sleeping problems, stomach upset, and anxiety — especially in those who are sensitive to caffeine.
Beyond Raw LIT is moderately priced and provides good value, but it contains smaller doses of ingredients like creatine, beta-alanine, and citrulline compared with other products.
At WellnessVerge, we only use reputable sources, including peer-reviewed medical journals and well-respected academic institutions.
- International society of sports nutrition position stand: Beta-Alanine - PMC:
- International Society of Sports Nutrition position stand: safety and efficacy of creatine supplementation in exercise, sport, and medicine | Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition:
- International society of sports nutrition position stand: caffeine and exercise performance - PMC:
- Ancient peat and apple extracts supplementation may improve strength and power adaptations in resistance trained men - PMC:
- Modulatory effect of coffee fruit extract on plasma levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor in healthy subjects - PubMed:
- Acute Effects of Citrulline Supplementation on High-Intensity Strength and Power Performance: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis - PubMed:
- Acute Inositol-Stabilized Arginine Silicate Improves Cognitive Outcomes in Healthy Adults - PubMed:
- The effect of nitric-oxide-related supplements on human performance - PubMed:
- Acute Effect of Citrulline Malate on Repetition Performance During Strength Training: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis - PubMed:
- Malate | C4H4O5-2 - PubChem:
- Malic acid | C4H6O5 - PubChem:
- Citrulline | C6H13N3O3 - PubChem:
- A clinical evaluation to determine the safety, pharmacokinetics, and pharmacodynamics of an inositol-stabilized arginine silicate dietary supplement in healthy adult males - PMC:
- Acute effects of Nitrosigine® and citrulline malate on vasodilation in young adults - PMC:
- β-alanine supplementation to improve exercise capacity and performance: a systematic review and meta-analysis - PubMed:
- Wake up and smell the coffee: caffeine supplementation and exercise performance-an umbrella review of 21 published meta-analyses - PubMed:
- Neurophysiological Effects of Whole Coffee Cherry Extract in Older Adults with Subjective Cognitive Impairment: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Cross-Over Pilot Study - PMC:
- Multi-ingredient pre-workout supplements, safety implications, and performance outcomes: a brief review - PubMed:
- Common Habits, Adverse Events, and Opinions Regarding Pre-Workout Supplement Use Among Regular Consumers - PMC:
- A Systematic Risk Assessment and Meta-Analysis on the Use of Oral β-Alanine Supplementation - PMC:
- Caffeine - StatPearls - NCBI Bookshelf:
- Coffee, brewed - FoodData Central:
- The Safety of Ingested Caffeine: A Comprehensive Review - PMC:
- Association between intake of non-sugar sweeteners and health outcomes: systematic review and meta-analyses of randomised and non-randomised controlled trials and observational studies - PMC: