There has been a lot written about vitamins and supplements for energy and focus but very little has been written about Nootropics, which are known as “smart drugs” that can boost energy and improve mental performance.
Popular in highly competitive or mentally demanding industries like the military, with computer programmers or anywhere people who have to use their brain power working long hours, these smart drugs are also known as cognition enhancers, and are often used to boost memory, focus, creativity, intelligence and motivation.
Nootropics can be found in natural, synthetic and prescription form. Havasu Nutrition’s NeuroIgnite is a great brain and mood booster that doesn’t cause crashes or jitters as in the case of some caffeine products and prescription drugs.
When you repeat a behavior such as rereading or watching something over and over, you reactivate your memory and the connections in your brain become reinforced. There are tiny physical changes going on as you use your cerebral cortex and hippocampus.
Nootropics also shield the brain from injury and assist with cortical control mechanisms that play a role in higher formation critical thinking skills and fine motor skills. Modern day nootropics only go back about 50 years and include botanical extracts such as Panax ginseng, Ginkgo Biloba, L-theanine, and racetams and dietary supplements.
Nootropic supplements are legal in the United States, but you need to check their legality in other countries. These are some of the most commonly known Nootropics:
Easily the most widely used and easily accessible psychoactive substance out there. Found in coffee, tea, soda, and even some nuts, low to moderate amounts of caffeine are known to make you more alert, increase your attention and decrease your reaction time. This happens as a result of caffeine blocking adenosine receptors in your brain, which make you feel less tired.
This mushroom has neuroprotective and nootropic effects, and it can improve memory and reasoning. Other benefits of Lion's Mane include reducing anti-inflammatory effects in the body, decreasing neural excitability. Lion’s mane has been used for thousands of years and originates from the East in countries like Korea and China. Lion’s mane is also an important source of protein, complex carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals. Taking a Lion’s Mane supplement regularly can help you to stay balanced and when you are under a lot of stress.
L-Theanine is an amino acid found primarily in green and black tea and some mushrooms and is available in pill and tablet form. It’s considered to be a Nootropic that reduces anxiety and when “stacked” or paired with caffeine, can help to increase creativity, improve focus and attention. It’s also known to help to boost immunity and is good for helping to fight tumor-causing effects stemming from cancer. It is also known to lower blood pressure and symptoms related to Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. L-Theanine also helps with getting a good night’s sleep.
Ginkgo Biloba is known to improve memory and mental processing in healthy older adults, as well as reduce stress-related high blood pressure and decrease levels of cortisol in stressful situations.
Creatine is an amino acid commonly used as a bodybuilding supplement but is also known to improve short-term memory and reasoning skills.
While there are many other Nootropics that could be added to this list, not all have been backed by research to have proven and safe long-term effects. Natural Nootropics are often used in alternative medicine, but their effects may be more subtle and less immediate.
Memory is fundamental to the quality of life. Neuroscience has come a long way since it first started and is now turning the keys over so that people can hack their own brains. Nootropics play a key role in helping you enhance your brain performance, which is especially good for writers and people who need a performance boost without the side effects of jitters.