The smart drug Bacopa monnieri works
The 14 best nootropics and smart drugs tested
Nootropics and smart drugs are natural or synthetic substances that can be taken to improve the mental performance of healthy people.
They have gained popularity in today's highly competitive society and are most commonly used to promote memory, focus, creativity, intelligence, and motivation.
Here's a look at the top 14 nootropics and how they improve performance.
Caffeine is the most commonly consumed psychoactive substance in the world (1).
It's found naturally in coffee, cocoa, tea, cola nuts, and guarana, in addition to many sodas, energy drinks, and medications. It can also be taken as a supplement, alone or in combination with other substances (2).
Caffeine blocks the adenosine receptors in your brain, making you less tired (3).
A low to moderate caffeine intake of 40 to 300 mg increases your alertness and reaction time. These doses are particularly effective in tired people (4, 5, 6).
Summary Caffeine is a natural chemical that increases your alertness, improves your alertness, and decreases your reaction times.
L-theanine is a naturally occurring amino acid in tea, but it can also be taken as a dietary supplement (7).
Several studies have shown that taking 200 mg of L-theanine has a calming effect without causing drowsiness (8, 9).
Ingesting just 50 mg - the amount found in roughly two cups of brewed tea - has been shown to increase the alpha waves associated with creativity in the brain (9).
L-theanine is even more effective when taken with caffeine. For this reason, they are often used together in performance-enhancing nutritional supplements. In addition, both are of course contained in tea (7, 10).
Summary L-theanine is an amino acid found in tea that increases the feeling of calm and can be associated with increased creativity. When combined with caffeine, the effectiveness is even greater.
Creatine is an amino acid that your body uses to make protein.
It's a popular bodybuilding supplement that promotes muscle growth but is also good for your brain.
After ingestion, creatine enters your brain where it binds to phosphate and forms a molecule that your brain uses to quickly supply its cells (11).
This increased availability of energy to your brain cells has been linked to improvements in short-term memory and thinking skills, especially in vegetarians and extremely stressed people (12, 13, 14).
Studies show that it is safe to ingest 5 grams of creatine per day without any ill effects. Larger doses are also effective, but there are no studies on their long-term safety (15).
Summary Creatine is an amino acid that can improve short-term memory and thinking skills. It is most effective on vegetarians and people who are stressed out. Dosages of 5 grams per day have been shown to be safe over the long term.
Bacopa Monnieri is an ancient herb used in Ayurvedic medicine to improve brain function.
Several studies have shown this Bacopa Monnieri Dietary supplements can speed up information processing in the brain, shorten reaction times, and improve memory (16, 17, 18).
Bacopa Monnieri contains agents called bacosides that protect your brain from oxidative stress and improve signal transmission in your hippocampus, an area of your brain where memories are processed (19).
The effects of Bacopa Monnieri are not felt immediately. Therefore, doses of 300 to 600 mg should be taken for several months for maximum benefit (20, 21).
SummaryBacopa Monnieri is a herbal preparation that improves memory and information processing after a few months.
Rhodiola rosea is an adaptable herb that helps your body manage stress better.
Several studies have shown this Rhodiola Rosea Dietary supplements can improve mood and reduce the feeling of burnout in anxious and very stressed people (22, 23).
Take small daily doses of Rhodiola Rosea It has been shown to reduce mental fatigue and increase student well-being during stressful exams (24).
More research is needed to determine the optimal dosage and better understand how the plant causes these effects.
SummaryRhodiola Rosea is a natural herb that can help your body adapt to periods of intense stress and reduce the associated mental fatigue.
Panax ginseng The root is an ancient medicinal plant that is used to stimulate brain function.
Take a single dose of 200 to 400 mg Panax ginseng It has been shown to reduce brain fatigue and improve performance on difficult tasks such as exercise. B. Mental calculation problems significantly improved (25, 26, 27).
However, it is unclear how Panax ginseng stimulates brain function. This may be due to its powerful anti-inflammatory effects, which help protect your brain from oxidative stress and improve its function (28).
Some long-term studies have shown that your body can adapt to ginseng, making it less effective after a few months of use. Therefore, the long-term nootropic effects need to be investigated more closely (29).
Summary Occasional doses of Panax ginseng may help improve mental function, but more research is needed to determine its long-term effectiveness.
Excerpts from the leaves of the Ginkgo biloba Tree can also have beneficial effects on your brain.
Ginkgo biloba Supplements have been shown to improve memory and mental processing in healthy seniors when taken daily for six weeks (30, 31, 32).
Takings Ginkgo biloba Before a very strenuous task, the stress-related high blood pressure also lowers and lowers the level of cortisol, a type of stress hormone (33).
The hypothesis is that some of these benefits are due to increased blood flow to the brain after taking supplementation Ginkgo biloba (34).
While these results are promising, not all studies have shown beneficial effects. More research is needed to better understand the potential benefits of Ginkgo biloba on your brain (35).
Summary Some research suggests this Ginkgo biloba can improve memory and mental processing and be beneficial in stressful situations. However, more research is needed.
Nicotine is a chemical found naturally in many plants, including tobacco. It is one of the substances that make cigarettes so addicting.
It can also be absorbed into nicotine gum or absorbed through the skin through a nicotine patch.
Studies show that nicotine can have nootropic effects, such as increased alertness and alertness, especially in people with naturally weak attention spans (36, 37).
It was also found to improve engine function. In addition, nicotine gum is associated with improved writing speed and flowability (38).
However, this substance can be addictive and in large doses can be fatal. So you have to be careful (39).
Summary Nicotine is a natural chemical that stimulates alertness, attention, and motor skills. However, in large doses, it is addictive and toxic.
Noopept is a synthetic smart drug that can be bought as a supplement.
Unlike some natural nootropics, the effects of Noopept can be felt in a few minutes rather than a few hours, days, or weeks, and usually last for several hours (40, 41).
Animal studies have shown that Noopept speeds brain formation and restores memories by increasing brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), a compound that promotes the growth of brain cells (42, 43, 44).
Human research has shown that this smart drug helps patients recover faster from a brain injury. However, more study is needed to understand how it can be used as a nootropic in healthy adults. Health (45, 46).
Summary Noopept is a fast-acting synthetic nootropic that can improve memory by increasing the levels of BDNF in your brain. However, more human research is needed.
Piracetam is another synthetic nootropic molecule whose structure and function are very similar to those of Noopept.
It has been shown to improve memory in people with age-related intellectual disabilities, but does not appear to have any significant benefit in healthy adults (47, 48).
In the 1970s, some small, poorly designed studies suggested that piracetam could improve memory in healthy adults, but these results have not been replicated (49, 50, 51).
Although piracetam is widely used and advertised as a smart drug, there is a lack of research into its effects.
Summary Piracetam is marketed as a nootropic supplement, but there is a lack of research to prove its effectiveness.
Phenotropil, also known as Phenylpiracetam, is a synthetic smart drug that is widely used as an over the counter supplement.
It has a similar structure to Piracetam and Noopept and helps the brain recover from various injuries such as stroke, epilepsy, and trauma (52, 53, 54).
One study in rats found that Phenotropil improved memory slightly, but there is no research to support its use as a smart drug in healthy adults (55).
Summary Phenotropil is marketed as a smart drug, but there is no research showing that it improves memory in healthy adults.
Modafinil is commonly sold under the brand name Provigil and is a prescription drug often used to treat narcolepsy, a disease that causes uncontrollable sleepiness (56).
Its stimulating effects are similar to those of amphetamines or cocaine. However, animal studies suggest that the risk of addiction is lower (57, 58).
Several studies have shown that Modafinil significantly reduces feelings of fatigue and improves memory in sleep-deprived adults (59, 60, 61).
It also improves the way the leader works or the ability to properly manage your time and resources to achieve your goals (60).
Although Modafinil appears to have potent nootropic effects, it is only available by prescription in most countries.
Even when prescribed, it is important to use this drug responsibly to avoid negative side effects.
Although Modafinil is generally not considered dependent, cases of dependence and withdrawal have been reported at high doses (62, 63).
Summary Modafinil is a prescription drug that can reduce drowsiness and improve brain function in healthy adults, especially those who are sleepless. However, it should only be taken as directed.
13. Amphetamines (Adderall)
Adderall is a prescription drug that contains highly stimulant amphetamines.
It is most commonly prescribed to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and narcolepsy, but it is increasingly being used by healthy adults to improve their alertness and focus (64).
Adderall increases the availability of the brain chemicals dopamine and norepinephrine in your prefrontal cortex, a region of your brain that controls working memory, attention, and behavior (65).
The amphetamines in Adderall make people more alert, alert, and optimistic. They also reduce appetite (66).
A review of 48 studies found that Adderall significantly improved people's ability to control their behavior and short-term memory (67).
Depending on the prescribed dose and type of pill, the effects last for up to 12 hours (68).
It is important to note that these drugs are not without side effects.
Adderall is widely abused on campus, and some surveys show that up to 43% of students use stimulants without a prescription (69).
Side effects of adderall abuse include anxiety, decreased libido, and sweating (70).
Recreational abuse of Adderall can also cause more serious side effects, such as heart attacks, especially when mixed with alcohol (71, 72, 73).
The evidence that Adderall improves mental performance is strong, but it should only be taken as directed.
Summary Adderall isn't available without a prescription, but it appears to improve brain function in healthy adults and people with ADHD.
Ritalin is another prescription drug used to treat the symptoms of ADHD and narcolepsy.
Like Adderall, it is a stimulant that increases dopamine and norepinephrine levels in the brain. However, it does not contain amphetamines (74).
In healthy adults, Ritalin improves short-term memory, the speed of information processing, and alertness (75, 76).
It is generally well tolerated, but can have the opposite effect and affect thinking if an overdose is ingested (77).
Like Adderall, Ritalin is subject to widespread abuse, particularly in people aged 18-25 years (78).
Insomnia, upset stomach, headache, and loss of appetite are the most common side effects of Ritalin (79).
It can also cause hallucinations, psychosis, seizures, arrhythmias, and high blood pressure, especially at high doses (79, 80, 81, 82).
Ritalin is a powerful stimulant and should only be taken as directed and monitored closely to detect any abuse.
Summary Ritalin is a smart drug that improves information processing, memory, and alertness. It is only available by prescription.
Nootropics and smart drugs are natural, synthetic, and prescription substances that improve mental function.
Smart prescription drugs like Adderall and Ritalin have the greatest and most important effects on memory and alertness.
Synthetic nootropic supplements such as Noopept and Piracetam are widely used, but research into their effectiveness in healthy adults has been lacking.
Many natural nootropics are used in alternative medicine, but their effects are generally more subtle and slower. They are sometimes combined to improve their effectiveness.
The use of nootropic and intelligent drugs is increasing in society today, but more research is needed to better understand their benefits.
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