Maybe you have a coworker who can’t stop raving about a certain pill or supplement she takes that has “changed her life”. Or, maybe you have come across advertisements online celebrating the magical effects of nootropics. Whatever it is, the popularity of nootropics can’t be understated. From university students eager to get ahead academically to suave business professionals working tirelessly to secure a big project, nootropic use boosts mental acuity, amplifies productivity, and maximizes performance.
These cognitive enhancers are either natural or synthetic substances that positively impact mental skills and abilities, earning for themselves substantial praise and even notoriety. If you’re wondering whether nootropics even work or are merely glorified sugar pills, this is the article for you.
Hold on, what are these pills, again?
Nootropics are basically chemical substances that can be categorized into three overarching categories:
These substances enhance cognitive function, boost mood, enhance creativity, and increase memory. The premise here sounds pretty lofty, almost too good to be true: swallow a pill and unlock brain potential! And taken in isolation, yes, this would be incorrect. However, nootropic use alongside other lifestyle improvements can take your mental performance to a whole other level.
How do nootropics work?
Nootropics specifically target certain neural pathways and biochemical reactions inside the body that are responsible for feelings of stagnation, anxiety, and stress. A commonly used nootropic, caffeine, has been shown to improve thinking skills. Of course, no one who starts their day off with a cup of coffee needs no convincing about the powerful effects of caffeine. This nootropic makes you feel more alert and improves your brain’s access to several important neurotransmitters such as acetylcholine. This improves short-term memory function and learning abilities.
Coffee is a good example to help illustrate the effects of nootropics. It’s a well-loved beverage without which the day feels incomplete. It wakes people up, enhances their cognitive functioning, and has zero side effects. Similar to caffeine in our coffees and teas, there are other nootropics with even more powerful impacts.
Nootropic use optimizes brain function to enhance pretty much every single aspect of your performance, which is why nootropics are attractive to people from a diverse range of professional fields.
How long do their benefits last?
Research has shown that nootropic use yields short-term benefits and long-term benefits.
Short-term benefits are predicated on performance related mental tasks. Performance driven thinking requires focus, short-term memory, and stress resistance, all of which are aided by nootropics. By boosting these areas in mental performance, nootropics enhance productivity by intensifying our efforts and allowing our brains to feed off of effects of competing against time and chasing deadlines.
The long-term benefits of nootropic use are associated with the brain structure. Over time, nootropics promote the development and maintenance of a healthy brain structure and keep cognitive functions intact. It is no surprise that the process of aging negatively impacts information processing, memory, and mental clarity.
The most prominent changes in cognition due to age include the slowing down of tasks that require us to quickly process or transform information to make a decision. Changes in structure and function of the brain are significantly related to these age-related cognitive changes, including alterations in neuronal structure and dysfunction of neuronal networks. Age-related diseases increasingly speed up the rate of neuronal dysfunction, neuronal loss, and cognitive decline. Of course, many people even develop cognitive impairments that are so severe that they impair everyday functional abilities. The use of nootropics in the long term can facilitate cognitive function but supporting memory, mood, information processing, and mental clarity well into old age.
Natural and synthetic nootropics
While both naturally derived and synthetic substances have nootropic effects, you should know that there are options available.
Among natural nootropics is L-Theanine, a common and powerful substance found in green tea. Multiple studies have shown L-Theanine improves attention performance, improves sleep, boosts reaction time, and promotes relaxation. Another natural nootropic is Bacopa monnieri, an herb used in Ayurvedic medicine. Like many other natural nootropics, Bacopa monnieri is known to facilitate mental performance while reducing stress. Another benefit of supplementing with Bacopa Monnieri is that it contains adaptogens that fight off free radicals, reducing risk of heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.
Nootropics are used worldwide and their benefits enjoyed by millions. They’re easy to use and the best way to unlock our brain potential! Get in touch with us for more information.
The world today is a fast-paced place, full of distractions that insist on your attention every second of every day. You just can’t put your phone down. Ping! There goes your phone again…