Nootropics… You may have heard about them from co-workers, friends, or online. But you might not understand what they are, how they work, or what they can do for you. If you are a beginner to Nootropics or you want to learn more. This guide will teach you everything you need to know.
Things that are classified as Nootropics can be anything that can give your brain a positive cognitive effect. That is why sometimes you will hear Nootropics referred to as a “Smart Drug“. People use Nootropics to boost their mental performance which helps them excel at work, school, and everyday life.
It should be noted that not all Nootropics are the same. There are Nootropics that have been studied for decades that have been proven to be safe. While there are other kinds of Nootropics that are relatively new that have absolutely zero studies that can prove if they are even safe or effective.
If you are considering taking a Nootropic to help boost your brain’s function and cognitive abilities. You need to be careful! Don’t take something that you have done no research on. There have been cases where people have abused Nootropics by taking the wrong dose and it has caused themselves serious harm. Before taking anything you should always talk to your doctor first.
What are Nootropics?
Nootropics, which are commonly called “smart drugs,” they are substances that offer cognitive benefits. Nootropics can increase thinking ability and focus, improve memory and mental processing time, and increase your ability to concentrate.
In some cases, they can even protect the brain. These neuroprotective properties can protect people’s brains from certain kinds of trauma. Some nootropics are manufactured substances (synthetic), and some are naturally occurring.
How Do Nootropics Work?
Different nootropics work to increase cognitive functioning in different ways. One common class of nootropics, called racetams, act on the receptors for the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. Acetylcholine is a neurotransmitter that is important to memory, thinking, decision making, and other cognitive functions.
Racetams are some of the oldest manufactured nootropics around, and the class includes chemicals like piracetam, pramiracetam, oxiracetam, and aniracetam. This class of nootropic stimulates the activity of acetylcholine receptors in the brain, making them more sensitive to existing levels of acetylcholine.
Since they are not stimulants, racetams are able to increase most cognitive functions without giving users the agitation, anxiety, and jitters that many stimulant drugs can cause.
Another common nootropic is the naturally-occurring vinpocetine, which is extracted from the seeds of the periwinkle plant. This nootropic also can help to increase circulation and may protect or improve vision and hearing.
Because it helps stimulate the production of adenosine triphosphate, or ATP, which is the major source of cellular energy, it can support and speed up many brain functions.
Choline, which is a precursor to acetylcholine, is also commonly taken as a nootropic. This micronutrient is often classified as a B vitamin, and because it has multiple health benefits across different systems, it is a popular choice. It can be taken alone, but some users opt to take it alongside other nootropics for amplified results.
For instance, since taking choline often results in the production of more acetylcholine and racetams can increase the sensitivity of acetylcholine receptors, taking these two together may yield better cognitive results than taking either nootropic individually.
Health Benefits of Nootropics
Nootropics are commonly taken in order to improve cognitive functions, including improving memory, boosting creativity, improving focus, and more. However, many of them also have other health benefits.
Because many of them increase energy production, efficient use of energy, or both, most nootropics are very effective at reducing fatigue – both physical and mental.
Some nootropic compounds also have physical health benefits. For instance, choline, which is mentioned above, supports liver health and healthy cholesterol levels.
Vinpocetine increases blood flow, which can generally improve health. Some evidence suggests it may be able to treat dementia.
In short, nootropics are powerful compounds that can support better brain function and can also offer a variety of other health benefits.
For those looking for a way to improve concentration and memory, or for those looking to decrease fatigue, they offer a way to do so with little to no side effects.