Your brain collects around 70 thousand thoughts a day. Sadly, it doesn't have the power of storing all those thoughts, losing most of them on the way... but nootropics can help retain more of them!
Albert Einstein was one of the greatest minds of human history. Do you know his secret?!
He used nootropics 🤫
If you want to become the Einstein of our centuty, this post is for you 😉
What are Nootropics?
Nootropics, or ‘smart drugs’, are substances that can boost brain performance and other aspects related to cognitive function.
Using nootropics may help you increase your focus levels, improve your memory or learning, or enhance your creativity (source)
Based on the nature of the nootropic, it can be considered synthetic, or natural.
The effect of synthetic prescribed nootropics is stronger when compared to nootropics supplement, but their safety profile is somewhat riskier.
Herbal nootropics are substance discovered by ancient cultures. The uses of these herbal substances were to relieve pain, cure diseases, or even used with the believe of cleaning your body and soul.
How can Nootropics Make you a Genius?
Nootropics enhance your cognitive through different mechanisms. Depending on the nootropic, the effect and outcome will be slightly different.
Nootropics Provide Energy to the Brain
Your brain makes up 3% of your total body weight… but it consumes around 15% of the total energy and oxygen supply.
Nootropics act as vasodilators, increasing the blood flow and oxygen supply to the brain (source).
This will provide more oxygen to the brain, and it will be able to produce more energy.
Nootropics Protect your Neurons
Neurons cannot be reproduced. To survive, they need to constantly maintain and repair their own components.
Nootropics reduces inflammation in the brain (source), and protects the brain from toxins.
These two mechanisms will protect the brain and slow down the aging process of your neurons.
Nootropics Change the Concentration of Neurotransmitters
Nootropics interact with the cholinergic and dopaminergic pathways (source)
The cholinergic system, ruled by the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, plays a central role cognitive function and neural connections (source)
The use of nootropics reduce acetylcholine esterase, an enzyme in charge of breaking down acetylcholine.
Nootropics also interact with other neurotransmitters such as dopamine or norepinephrine, increasing stimulation in the hipoccampus and hypotalamus (study)
Nootropics Supplements to Make you Einstein
Nootropics can help you enhance and protect your brain… but what are the best nootropics supplements you can take?
Caffeine is a potent stimulant acting in our brain. It antagonizes adenosin receptors, blocking adenosin from binding to its receptor and making you feel less tired (source)
Doses of 40-300mg increases your alertness and attention and decreases your reaction time.
Taking 3-6 mg/kg is the recommended and safe dose of caffeine.
The half life of caffeine is 6h. To avoid insommnia, don’t consume caffeine in the late afternoon or before going to bed.
L-Theanine is an amino acid considered a nootropic supplement. It’s natural found in black tea and some mushrooms.
The effects of l-theanine are stress and cognitive related (source). It induces neural plasticity in the hipoccampus and increases your cognitive performance and memory (source)
L-Theanine is even more effective when taken together with caffeine (source). Taking both nootropics supplements in a ratio 1:1 or 2:1 (l-theanine:caffeine) can increase the effects of both substances.
Panax Ginseng, also called Asian Ginseg, is a herb that has been hystorically used for health purposes.
Panax Ginseng contains a large list of bioactive compounds. The ginsenosides present in the root show to have a nootropic effect.
The nootropic supplement increase your memory and enhances your cognitive activity (source).
The use of Panax Ginseng increases blood supply to the brain, protecting and providing energy to the brain cells (study
Doses of 200-400 mg/day are sufficient to experience all the benefits of Panax Ginseng.
There’s a lot of interactions with other drugs, and the use of Panax Ginseng must be discussed with your physician.
Ashwagandha is one of the most potent adaptogens and nootropics supplements known.
This substance acts protecting the brain by reducing reactive oxygen species (ROS) and activating antioxidant enzymes (source
Ashwagandha as a nootropic supplement enhance neurogenesis (formation of new neurons) by blocking neurotoxins, and increasing concentrations of BDNF (source), important for neuroplasticity and neural development (source)
Doses of 300-500 mg/day with a meal and first time in the morning is the best protocol to experience the benefits of Ashwagandha
Blueberries have a potential nootropic effect. Their bioactive compound, antocyanins, show a potent antioxidant effect. These compounds also improve your cardiovacular and cognitive health. (source)
Blueberries protect the brain from cognitive degeneration by increasing BDNF and reducing DNA damage (source). The use of blueberries also enhances your memory.
The recommended dose lies on 60-120g/day of fresh blueberries, or 5.5-11g/day blueberry extract.
Creatine is an amino acid your body uses to make protein and produce energy (source). It’s been widely used in the fitness industry due to the safe profile and potent effects on muscle metabolism and training performance (source)
When creatine enters your brain, it binds to a phosphate group, creating a molecule that can be later used to produce energy. This form of energy production is called phosphagen systems (source).
Creatine provides energy to the brain, enhancing short-term memory and reasoning skills (source)
Doses of 5g/day or 0.1g/kg/day are enough to benefit from the use of creatine.
Other Nootropic Drugs
There are other prescribed drugs also considered nootropics, generally with a stronger effect than nootropic supplements.
As the effect is stronger, the risk of adverse effects is also considerably higher. Consult with a physician if you need of these nootropic drugs, and in what dosage
Ritalin is a prescription drug used to manage symptoms of ADHD and narcolepsy.
Besides its nootropic effect, ritalin acts as a stimulant, rising dopamine levels and giving more energy when taken.
In healthy adults, ritalin improves short-term memory, information-processing speed and attention (source)
Ritalin taken in the prescribed amounts is safe and effective. However, it may impair thinking and blurr the mind if taken in high doses (source).
It can also cause psychosis, heart arrhythmias, and high blood pressure (source)
NooPept is a smart drug considered a supplement.
The effects of NooPept can be felt within minutes, and it lasts for several hours.
Preclinical studies made in rodents showed to increase dopamine, BDNF, and stimulate brain cells profileration (source)
Little evidence in humans supports the use of NooPept for now, but further clinical trials are under research.
Adderall is an amphetamine, one of the most popular nootropic drugs known.
This amphetamine, as Ritalin, is used for ADHD and narcolepsy, although it’s also used to improve focus and concentration in healthy adults (source)
Adderall makes people feel more awake and optimistic (source)
This nootropic drug improves cognition by enhancing your ability to focus and reduce impulsivity. It increases dopamine and norepinephrine in the brain
Adderall abuse can also cause more severe side effects, such as heart attack, especially when mixed with alcohol (Source)
Is it Safe to Use Nootropics?
The safety of nootropics depends on which nootropics you are using, and which amounts.
Nootropics supplements are generally safer than nootropics drugs. Their effect in our body is mild compared to ritalin, adderall, or other smart drugs available in the market.
Synthetic smart drugs are usually prescribed. If you follow your doctor’s prescription, using these smartdrugs shouldn’t cause any problem.
Consult with your physician before using any nootropic supplement, and only use nootropic synthetic drugs under your doctor’s prescription.
Nootropics are substances that can boost your cognitive performance and other aspects of your brain and cognition.
They can be classified in natural and synthetic. In the market, we have nootropics supplements, and nootropic drugs.
The use of nootropics can help you enhance your focus and attention, improve learning and memory, or protect your brain from aging and degeneration.