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ZMA Reviews

By: Optimum


Overall Score   How is this Calculated?


Ranks #1 of 34 (better than 100%) in
Growth Enhancers > Nighttime Sleep Formulas

ZMA is a Nighttime Sleep Formula manufactured by Optimum. It is designed to be used before bed time. It promotes restful sleep, increases REM sleep and helps the body attain an optimal state for muscle recovery and growth.


Rep: +2,461
Trust: 100%
  January 2, 2011

As my supplement knowledge grew, I began to want to learn more about natural testosterone boosters. ZMA kept popping up during my search as being a natural and affordable option to supporting and optimizing test levels, as well as aiding in muscle recovery. For those unaware, ZMA is a blend of zinc, vitamin B6, and magnesium (most often in aspartate form). It is often found in some capacity in most natural testosterone boosters.

I decided to go ahead and go with ON's brand of ZMA. I purchased 90 caps for $12.99 from and started off dosing just 1 cap just before bed. After a few days I had upped my dosing to the recommended 3 caps. I'll note that I didn't start feeling the immediate effects of the product until I was taking the maximum recommended dose. Additionally, I did not consume any form of calcium within an hour of dosing ZMA as supposedly doing so can inhibit the body's absorption of the zinc.

Obviously since this is a capsule supplement neither of these categories apply. I will say that the caps are small and VERY manageable, even for someone who dislikes swallowing pills.

Once I upped my dosing to 3 pills I immediately noticed an increase in the quality and deepness of my sleep. I am a very solid sleeper – I get at least 6 to 8 hours every single night. I rarely wake up during the night and I do not have any issues falling asleep. Even so, I still found that my sleep improved while taking ZMA. It's hard to describe the sensation, but about 20 minutes or so after dosing I would feel very relaxed and not want to move my limbs at all. It was a comfortable sensation and not at all unpleasant.

Generally two side effects are common when taking ZMA. The first is vivid and "extreme" dreaming. I certainly experienced this, although I was not in any way bothered by the effects. Ever since I was a little kid I've often had very graphic and disturbing dreams – I am not sure exactly why. Although I did have vivid dreams for nearly two weeks straight, I would consider the dreams more "normal". The dreaming effects diminished after about three weeks of using the product.

The second side that many people discuss is lethargy upon waking. Fortunately I did not experience this problem. If anything I awoke more refreshed than normal. I had no issues getting out of bed and no lasting feelings of lethargy throughout my day. My sleep schedule is quite strict however and I do work your standard 9-5 office job. I would caution anyone with an irregular sleeping schedule or job that requires them to be "on call" to be careful when taking ZMA, as it very well might interfere in a negative manner.

As for raising or optimizing my natural test levels – this is something I found difficult to discern. I didn't notice any difference in my workouts or my mood while taking this product. I wasn't more prone to anger or anything along those lines. I will say that I did experience a solid boost in my sex Drive, which was a very big plus for this product as I take anti-anxiety medication that can put a serious damper on my love life. As a side note – I was also taking Animal Stak for most of the time that I was dosing ZMA, and it's likely that it was a combination of both products that caused the sex Drive boost.

VALUE: 10/10
The bottle of 90 caps lasted me about a month. Considering that most test boosters cost upwards of $50 and last around the same time period, I feel that ZMA is a much more affordable option for those looking to optimize their natural testosterone levels. Additionally, ZMA has the benefit of aiding in sleep and recovery, which in my opinion is far more valuable than slightly increased test levels.

At .40 cents per serving (.32 for the 180 cap bottle), ON's ZMA is certainly an extremely affordable option. Although there are a few brands out there with cheaper ZMA, with ON you can rest assured that you are getting a quality product.

OVERALL: 9.5/10
ZMA is an excellent and affordable supplement with multiple benefits. It does not need to be cycled and can be stacked on a bulk or cut. In all honesty, there aren't that many products out there with the same nutritional, hormonal, and recovery benefits then plain ZMA. I highly recommend trying this product, regardless of brand. Furthermore, I think this is an excellent option for those younger lifters who probably wouldn't benefit much from a natural t-booster due to already high test levels. ZMA can help optimize those already high levels and will save you wallet from an unnecessary beating.

Personally ZMA has become a steady staple in my stack. Although I am currently taking PowerFULL and have put the ZMA aside for the moment, I already have two bottles of SciFit's ZMA (BOGO deal on lined up and ready to go. If you haven't already done so, give this product a shot. You won't be sorry.
  • Great Value
  • Very Effective For Sleep
  • Optimizes Natural Test Levels
    Rep: +3,681
    Trust: 100%

      May 26, 2010

    Finally got a chance to sit down and write this review of ZMA.

    Like with any training split you are on, sleep is critcal to the overall growth, recovery and general well being. Like they say, "You don't build muscle while in the gym". A solid 8 hours of deep sleep is critical and should never be overlooked.

    Usage: Ran this product about 30 minutes before bedtime with my night-time shake (typically ON Casein or Nitro Core 24). 2-3 pills daily.

    Overall Effectiveness 9: I typically sleep very well during the night, but do wake up 1-2 times to answer natures call due to the amounts of fluids running through my system. This helps ensure that the sleep I is Maximized. Also, going back to sleep when you wake up in the middle of the night is much easier. The sleep is very deep and you feel very refreshed and energized. Recovery and overall performance definitely increased as opposed to not running this product.

    Value 9: Like anything, this is roughly $20 for a 3 month supply. Cheap and worth the investment. Your body will thank you.

    Conclusion: This product, like most Optimum products is very solid. Not many complaints and is priced nicely. I can't stress enough how important sleep is and if you do serious training, including HIIT. Your entire body will be thanking you.
    • Good Value
    • Very Effective For Sleep
    • Helps Recovery
      Rep: +92
      Trust: 100%
        August 11, 2015

      I'm a 25 year old hard gainer and my goal is to add lean mass. This product helped me to achieve that mainly by helping me with recovery and optimizing my natural testosterone levels.

      *Ingredient Profile
      Zinc 30 Mg (200%)- Great way to get this micro-nutrient which is essential for optimizing natural test levels. Also this helps improve the release of IGF-1.
      Magnesium 450 Mg (113%)- Another micro-nutrient that is key to testosterone. It improves the body's anti-oxidant capacity and also decreases inflammation. It's good for joints along with many other benefits.
      Vitamin B6 (525%)-Another essential micro-nutrient, don't always get it in my diet.

      No taste it is capsules. I took the three capsules about five nights a week and still got benefits although it recommends 7 nights a week. I still noticed it helped my recovery.

      *Effectiveness (7/10)
      I really didn't notice it helping with my sleep much. I got a little drowsy but for me that feeling wore off quickly (30 minutes to an hour). I have trouble sleeping anyway though and everyone is different. I had to use melatonin to sleep. It did help with recovery though, I was noticeable less sore and able to really get after it in the gym consistently. I was able to lift heavy and lift in high volume without joint pain or excessive soreness. This helped me to continue progressing without additional recovery days or deload weeks. I got stronger and added mass with this product.

      *Value (9/10)
      It is 90 servings for $13.55, you can't beat that! Basically it is $13.55/month for men because the recommended dosage is 3 caps a night. For women a month and a half. The recommended dosage is two caps a night for women.

      *Side Effects
      No negative side effects. I did notice an increase in libido though.

      I would recommend this to someone who doesn't always get these micro-nutrients ZMA has (B6, zinc,and magnesium) in their diet. And for anyone who is looking to improve their recovery. The most noticeable effect for me was definitely improved recovery.
      • Provides Decent Amounts Of Very Inportant Micronutrients
      • Optimizes Natural Test Levels
      • Great Value
      • Helps Recovery
      • Didn't Have A Major Effect On My Sleep
      Rep: +2,103
      Trust: 100%

        November 21, 2011

      Well, I said I would start getting more involved and why not start off with a supplement that's blowing up big right now. Move over Compound 20. Get out of the way D-pol. Yes ladies & gents. Im talkin about Optimum ZMA. Lol...ok maybe I blew that outta proportion but this is a top notch supp right here. A couple of years ago on my quest to learn more about natural test booster ZMA kept popping up. After reading up on the benefits of ZMA (zinc, vitammin B6, and magnesium) which include helping you get a better quality of sleep and "possibly" helping sustain test levels at a good level I pulled the trigger on ZMA. Unfortunately GNC's version did nothing for me. (As always tho, thats just me; I was a non responder to that brand of ZMA and im not tryna knock it at all). On to The review tho:

      I got this for 12.99 from I know the price has risen by a dollar as of today but still that is not bad for 90 caps. I also stacked this bad boy with Powerfull before I went to bed. Do to this I took one less cap than recommended so it lasted longer.

      The only reason I am putting this part up here is because GNC's ZMA tasted and smelled horrible. If I were to compare it to another capsule i would put it right behind C-bol in the race for worst tasting/smelling capsule. Optimum's ZMA had none of that however. I would just pop it with my Powerfull and go.

      It usually takes me a while to go to sleep. I herniated a couple of disks in my back prior to my senior yr of high school and I could no longer sleep on my stomach without hurting my lowerbck, or waking up stiff...uh lower back stiff that is ;) lol. I always fell asleep faster that way but I to sleep on my back and I found myself staying awake longer trying to fall asleep that way. Im tellin ya, (maybe it was the placebo effect), these things had me out. I dont know if my dreams were anymore vivid than normal but I would't view having vivid dreams as a bad thing. I did find myself feeling a little more lethargic than normal, but once I left for class or practice that felling was going. Im not sure it helped boost my natural testosterone levels, as a matter of fact im sure it didn't cuz I was too young for it to do so when I took it, but it did put me in a relaxed mood. And like I said once i passed that lethargic feeling, do to the quality of sleep I was getting I felt freshed throughout the day.

      I would not say that you need this to be apart of your staple of supplements. There might not be a need for some guys to ever take ZMA...and thats fine. But I will say that if you have a problem sleeping and want to take something other than meds to help then go with this. Its cheap, effective and will have you out. Also if you want to possibly boost your natural testorone levels and are older than 25 then once again this is a cheap supplement that will help. You won't blow up off of it, but under the right circumstances, its worth the buy.
      • Great Value
      • Very Effective For Sleep
      • Helps Recovery
        Rep: +5,872
        Trust: 100%

          February 11, 2011

        As most of us already know, ON is a top notch company. I had tried ZMA in the past from another company no results. One of the sites I order from had this on sale last summer so I thought I'd give it a try since it was ON. Let's just say that it was successful so here it is 7 months later and I've finished three bottles!

        Price: Even after the sale, the price isn't bad for this. Around $20 for 180 caps, pretty good! I think Sci-Fit may be a little less though.

        You are supposed to dose this on an empty stomach. There are a lot of times that I can't take it right on an empty stomach due to my crazy schedule, I eat too late sometimes. Even when I take it 45 minutes after eating, the effects seem to be about the same.

        As far as the muscle building aspect of this supplement, I really can't notice that much of a difference. I can not directly attribute any specific Muscle Gains to this product. However, the deep sleep that I get with it is awesome! Taking three of these about an hour before bed on at least a semi-empty stomach is great! When I go to sleep, I sleep the whole night and usually have some very vivid dreams. Even though I can't point to any muscle growth from this product, we all know that a better sleep is great for our muscle growth. I know it is helping at least just because of that.

        I did notice a huge difference in the quality of my sleep between 2 and three caps. I tried 2 for about a week and noticed that I woke up a couple times more during the night.

        I have not developed a tolerance or dependence on this. Three caps works just as well today as it did when I started taking it. I personally only take it on workout days. On non-workout days, I sleep just like I did before I started taking it; restless and lots of tossing and turning. I tried taking it on days that I didn't workout and it didn't seem to have the same effect on my sleep pattern.

        Even though I can not point this to any specific size or strength gains, I know that the sleep quality is much better. I feel like a champ on 6 hours of sleep but it takes at least 8 without it to feel as good. The price is reasonable. I would highly suggest this to someone who lifts and needs a better rest cycle. You get the sleep you need without the unneeded drugs in Tylenol PM or other sleep pills. Give it a shot!

        • Great Value
        • Very Effective For Sleep
        • Helps Recovery
          Rep: +156
          Trust: 100%
            August 23, 2010

          I just finished up my bottle of ZMA and i must say this is going to be another staple in my stak.

          Effectiveness: Everyone already knows the importance of sleep. For me personally I have an extremely hard time falling asleep and staying asleep. I wake up several times during the night and have a hard time falling back asleep. When i took 2 pills at night i was sleeping like a baby and stayed asleep too. I woke up fully refreshed and ready to tackle the world. Now the dreams, they were just plain weird. For me is seemed like the last thing I watched on TV was what i was dreaming about. No nightmare or anything just plain weird and vivid dreams. The recovery part is what I enjoyed the most. Granted I am also taking Gluta-lyn but I was not sore at all while taking it. Even after an intense leg day, my legs would feel like jello the next couple days not with this. I felt completely refreshed.

          Value: A 30 day supply from is only 12.99 come on now you cant possibly beat that. Its cheap and highly effective.

          Overall: What else can i say that i haven't already. A very solid product that i feel should be in everyones stak. I already ordered my self another 30 day supply. If you haven't tried this please do so I guarantee you wont be disappointed.
          • Great Value
          • Very Effective For Sleep
          • Helps Recovery
            Rep: +1,864
            Trust: 100%
              May 7, 2010

            No need for a long review on this stuff since the effects of ZMA are very simple. It will help you get much more restful sleep and even help with natural testosterone production. I pop three of these on an empty stomach an hour before my bedtime casein shake and it makes a big difference in the quality of my nights sleep. I have always had difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep through the night and ZMA helps with that immensely. At 20 bucks for a two month supply there is not a person on earth who shouldn't be using this supplement. I just wake up feeling a lot better and ready to tackle the rest of the day. Do yourself a favor and add this to your arsenal if you don't already take it.
            • Great Value
            • Very Effective For Sleep
            • Helps Recovery
              Rep: +142
              Trust: 100%
                April 16, 2013

              Hi. This is my second review. I hope you'll find it useful.

              A brief recap of who I am: a regular guy, 41, work full-time at a desk job. Been working out consistently for the past 9 1/2 months. I discovered this site, did some research and entered the world of supplements cautiously - starting with Optimum Nutrition's Opti-Men, which I wrote my first review on.

              Now about that ZMA. I came across it when I was being a human sponge reading all of the great reviews from everyone here at and I put it down, with a number of other items to try.

              So why ZMA? I've always had problems sleeping, so that was my initial attraction to using it as the reviews suggested my sleep could be better. Second, as I was now getting more confident in my ability to push myself at the gym, and I was moving from 3-4 times a week to 4-5 times, I was dealing with a sore body and a lack of energy, which I felt could turn into a negative quickly if I didn't take steps. My third reason was because I wasn't taking anything else besides the Opti-Men and my diet was something I hadn't addressed yet - I'm taking baby steps because I don't want to flame out - and I thought this would be a decent supplement to try.

              To this point I've already used a full 180-count bottle and I'm a few weeks into my second 180-count bottle.

              Here is my experience with it.

              Dosing: I take 3 pills each night with a full glass of water, about an hour or so before I think I'll be ready to sleep and this is generally a couple hours since I last ate. I was going to bed late, 2:30am or sometimes later as this is a habit that I've formed over the years.

              I became aware of the effects of the pills after a couple days. These are a slight sleepiness and a relaxed feeling, like I want to lie down, not sit or stand. My sleeping habits as I mentioned are bad, generally I wake up 5-6 times during the night. With the ZMA this went down to 1-2 times a night and I fall into a deeper sleeping pattern quicker and for longer. I also sleep over a slightly longer period of time, 7 hours as opposed to the maybe 6 from before. So, not quite the home run I was hoping for but, it is an improvement. I'll be adding Melatonin to my routine in a couple days because the lack of uninterrupted sleep is an ongoing issue I want to solve.

              When I wake up in the morning, I have no problems getting out of bed or being alert. No mushiness or fuzziness. I also - and this is what I know the ZMA did - felt less soreness and I was able to push myself hard in the gym without feeling like I was stiff and lethargic.

              So, what qualifies as push myself? I was averaging 60 minutes of cardio 30 minutes of light weights before the ZMA.

              I have now moved to 60 minutes of higher intensity cardio where I sweat constantly and 30 minutes of moderate weights, and from 3-4 days a week to 4-5 days a week; this was big for me, because mentally I had the desire, and now my body wasn't too sore when I went to the gym and tried heavier weights.

              I was 173lbs when I started using ZMA, I'm now 171.5lbs. Not a lot, but because I had made no other changes to my diet - which admittedly is not the best but, like I said baby steps - this is all the result of consistent hard work and recovery.

              Now for the extra result that I noticed from the ZMA. Morning wood. Every day without fail once I actually get some good sleep in it's there. I think it's also made my libido rise because my girl has been beating me off with a stick and she also noticed the early morning drama; sometimes cause it's poking her when she stays over. I can also say there's been an increase in my performance - now this last may just be a combination of working out consistently + supplementing - but, it's changed moreso since I've been taking the ZMA.

              So for my ratings:

              Value - I got the bottle for $23 and that was about on par with most others I've seen, give or take a couple bucks. I say it rates a 9.

              Effectiveness - I had good recovery and morning wood + I think libido increase but, as I didn't get the full sleep effect I really wanted, I rate it a little lower than I might have otherwise, so an 8.

              Overall - I'd say an 8. I'm not sure how many people would really need this as a supplement, and for someone younger it may not even be necessary. However, I would totally recommend this for anyone in the late 30s upwards, or perhaps for someone who is now starting to work out and make diet corrections and wants to take baby steps, like myself. I'm going to keep taking it personally because I am feeling the results and I think it's worth it.

              I'm going to get my dad to use it because I think he'll have a great result with it.

              Finally, in closing I'll say I wrote this review for all you guys and gals out there who have helped me by providing your own valuable experience with the products you use.
              • Good Value
              • Helps Recovery
              • Morning Wood
              • Supports Sleep
                Rep: +54
                Trust: 88%
                  September 3, 2010

                AMAZING! This product is a killer good one. I love this thing. This product is a need for everyone in the weight lifting catigory.

                Okay enough bragging about the supplement lets talk up the ups and downs.

                Taste: ZMA from Optimum comes in a pill form, the pills are medium size so they should be to hard to take.

                Dosage: 3 for men and 2 for women. But I have heard of people taking 2 if they are men because of the lack of sleep they get with 3 pills.

                Side effects: ZMA is advised to be taken right before sleep on a empty stomach. I have taken it on a full stomach and side effects were just a little pain in the stomach, nothing too much. Also ZMA is a night recovery. So this means after taking the pills you will be sleepy. You will most likely have a perfect night of sleep. ( Some people need to lower the dosage to be able to get a good night of sleep.)

                Growth: This supplement helps on growth size. Tests have been done in the NCAA that players that took this in 6 weeks grew 250% more muscle then players who didnt.

                Price: Very Very good prices.
                ON ( it is $22 for 60 day supply for men and a 90 day supply for women. (3 pills = 60 days, 2 pills = 90 days.)

                On it is $17.49 for the same supply.

                I am also on my 3 bottle of pills.
                Great buy. Great supplement. 10/10
                • Good Value
                • Great Value
                • Very Effective For Sleep
                • Helps Recovery
                  Rep: +11
                  Trust: 0%
                    August 7, 2012

                  Stacked with a bunch of other products.

                  bought a month for about 20 buck which isn't too bad. I couldn't give ten because it didn't give me the sleep I wanted. I woke up with boners every day so it may have helped me get a deeper sleep.

                  Product is basically just zinc magnesium asparate. This is the most bioavailable form of zinc so your body really absorbs it more than eating red meat.

                  One thing is make sure to stay away from calcium or milk anytime around zma because the calcium blocks zincs absorption to a point.

                  Overall 9/10
                  No reason not to throw in stack if you are working out really hard
                  • Great Value
                  • Helps Recovery
                  • Optimizes Natural Test Levels

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