"The groundwork of all happiness is health." - Leigh Hunt

What are nootropics and do they really boost your brain?

Humans have long been trying to find a “magic elixir” to make us smarter, and improve our attention and memory. It includes Traditional Chinese medicine Used 1000's of years ago to enhance cognitive function.

Now we've nootropics, also referred to as smart drugs, brain enhancers or cognitive enhancers.

You can purchase these gummies, chewing gum, tablets and skin patches online, or at supermarkets, pharmacies or petrol stations. You don't need a prescription or seek the advice of a health skilled.

But do nootropics actually boost your brain? Here's what the science says.

What are nootropics and the way do they work?

Romanian psychologist and chemist Cornelius E. Georgia coined the term nootropics within the early Nineteen Seventies to explain compounds that may enhance memory and learning. The term comes from the Greek words (thought) and (guidance).

Nootropics can work within the brain improvement Assisting within the transmission of signals between nerve cells, maintaining nerve cell health, and energy production. There are some nootropics Antioxidant properties And can reduce damage to nerve cells within the brain attributable to the buildup of free radicals.

But how protected and effective are they? Let's have a look at 4 of probably the most commonly used nootropics.

1. Caffeine

You could also be surprised to know that caffeine is a nootropic. No wonder so a lot of us start our day with coffee. It stimulates our nervous system.

Caffeine is rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream and distributed to just about all human tissues. It includes the brain Where it increases our alertness, response time and mood, and we feel like we've more energy.

For these effects of caffeine, you have to eat. 32-300 mg in a single dose. That's roughly the equivalent of two espressos (for a 300mg dose). So, why the wide selection? Genetic variation in a selected gene ( CYP1A2 (genes) can affect how quickly you metabolize caffeine. This may due to this fact explain why some people need more caffeine than others to perceive any neurostimulant effect.

Unfortunately, an excessive amount of caffeine can lead Anxiety-like symptoms and panic attacks, Sleep disorder, Deceptionintestinal disorders and Heart problems.

Adults are due to this fact advised to not drink greater than this. 400mg of caffeine a daythe equivalent of up to a few espressos.

Caffeine could make you're feeling alert and boost your mood. This makes it nootropic.
LH Shooter/Shutterstock

2. L-theanine

L-theanine Comes as a complement, chewing gum or drink. It can also be probably the most common amino acid in green tea.

Using L-theanine as a complement can increase its production. Alpha waves They are associated within the mind. Increased warning And a way of calm.

However, its effect on cognitive function stays unclear. Various studies including Comparison Show a weight-reduction plan with day by day intake for several weeks, and in numerous populations. Different results.

But taking L-theanine with caffeine as a complement better Cognitive performance and vigilance in a study. Young adults who took L-theanine (97mg) plus caffeine (40mg) could switch more accurately between tasks after a single dose, and said they were more alert.

Another study Among those that took L-theanine with caffeine in doses just like those within the above study, several cognitive outcomes improved, including being less at risk of distraction.

Although pure L-theanine is Well toleratedThere are relatively few human trials to indicate that it really works or is protected over the long run. Larger and longer studies examining Maximum dose can also be needed.

Two clean mugs of green tea, with leaves on a wooden table
The amino acid L-theanine can also be present in green tea.
Graph Vision/Shutterstock

3. Ashwagandha

Ashwagandha is a plant extract that is usually used. Indian Ayurvedic Medicine To improve Memory and cognitive function.

In one study, 225-400mg day by day for 30 days Better cognitive performance in healthy men. in cognitive flexibility (ability to modify tasks), visual memory (image recall), response time (response to stimuli) and executive functioning (recognizing rules and categories, and managing rapid decision-making) There has been significant improvement.

There is Similar effects In older adults with moderate cognitive impairment.

But we Be careful Regarding the outcomes of studies on using Ashwagandha supplements; The studies are relatively small and only treat participants for a brief time frame.

Ashwagandha is a plant extract.
Ashwagandha is a plant extract commonly utilized in Ayurvedic medicine.
Agnieszka Kwiecień, Nova/Wikimedia, CC BY-SA

4. Creatine

Creatine is an organic compound that plays a job in how the body produces energy and is used as a sports complement. But it also has cognitive implications.

In a ___ Review According to the available evidence, healthy adults aged 66-76 years who took creatine supplements. Improved short-term memory.

Long-term supplementation may additionally have advantages. I Another study, individuals with fatigue after COVID took 4g of creatine a day for six months and reported that they were capable of focus higher, and were less fatigued. Creatine can reduce brain inflammation and oxidative stress to enhance cognitive performance and reduce fatigue.

Adverse effects Creatine supplements are rarely reported in studies. But these include weight gain, gastrointestinal upset, and changes within the liver and kidneys.

where now

There is sweet evidence for the brain-enhancing effects of caffeine and creatine. But the jury remains to be out. Efficacy, optimum dosage and safety Most other nootropics.

So until we've more evidence, seek the advice of your health skilled before taking nootropics.

But your day by day coffee isn't prone to do much harm. Thank God, because for a few of us it's a magical elixir.