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These 7 Nootropics Are the Real Smart Drugs

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Nootropics are drugs, supplements, and foods that improve mental function. Sometimes people refer to them as smart drugs. They facilitate desired mental functions like memory and focus, and reduce undesired mental states like stress and depression. I've been researching and experimenting with them for years. And I've found that most don't seem to do much more than make expensive urine. But there are exceptions. Below is my list of nootropics that work, based on peer reviewed scientific research and my own experience.

1) Bacopa Monnieri is a perennial creeping herb native to wetlands worldwide (read more). Supplementation may provide a notable increase to memory, according to multiple studies where at least two are double-blind and placebo controlled. It may also provide a minor decrease to anxiety, depression, and forgetting.


2) Creatine is a nitrogenous organic acid that occurs naturally in vertebrates (read more). It is best known for providing benefits to persons engaged in strength training. Supplementation may also provide a notable decrease to fatigue, according to multiple studies where at least two are double-blind and placebo controlled. It may also provide a notable decrease to depression; a minor increase to fatigue resistance, subjective well-being, and cognition; and a minor decrease to symptoms of sleep deprivation.


3) Ginkgo Biloba is a tree native to China (read more). Supplementation may provide a notable decrease to cognitive decline, according to robust research conducted with repeated double-blind clinical trials. It may also provide a minor increase to memory, cognition, sleep quality, subjective well-being, calmness, cerebral blood flow, processing accuracy, processing speed, and reaction time; and a minor decrease to symptoms of Alzheimer's, ADHD in children, anxiety, numerical memory, stress, symptoms of PMS, and symptoms of schizophrenia.


4) Inositol is a sugar alcohol chemical compound that exists in various forms, the most prominent of which is myo-inositol, which occurs widely in nature (read more). Supplementation may provide a notable decrease to anxiety and panic attacks, according to multiple studies where at least two are double-blind and placebo controlled. It may also provide a minor decrease to depression, and symptoms of PMS.


5) Melatonin is a substance found in animals, plants, fungi, and bacteria (read more). Supplementation may provide a strong decrease to insomnia and notable decrease to symptoms of jet lag, according to multiple studies where at least two are double-blind and placebo controlled. It may also provide a minor increase to sleep quality, and memory; and a minor decrease to alertness.


6) Rhodiola Rosea is a perennial flowering plant that grows on sea cliffs and mountains in cold regions of the world (read more). Supplementation may provide a notable decrease to fatigue, according to robust research conducted with repeated double-blind clinical trials; and a notable increase to cognition and subjective well-being, according to multiple studies where at least two are double-blind and placebo controlled. It may also provide a notable decrease to depression; a minor increase to processing accuracy; and a minor decrease to rate of perceived exertion, and stress.


7) Theanine is an amino acid analogue found primarily in particular plant and fungal species (read more). Supplementation may provide a notable increase to relaxation (usually without sedation), according to multiple studies where at least two are double-blind and placebo controlled. It may also provide a minor decrease to anxiety, and symptoms of schizophrenia; and a minor increase to sleep quality.


I'll also mention a couple other nootropics, not for general use, but specifically for those that may suffer from migraine headaches, which of course severely degrade proper mental performance. Like the nootropics listed above, these have solid scientific research supporting effective applications. And although I haven't used them myself, my son who has suffered from migraine headaches has used them with good results.

*) Feverfew is a perennial herb that was native to Eurasia and has spread around the world (read more). Supplementation may provide a strong decrease to migraine, according to robust research conducted with repeated double-blind clinical trials.


*) Vitamin B2 is found in milk, cheese, leafy vegetables, liver, kidneys, legumes, yeast, mushrooms, and almonds (read more). Supplementation may provide a notable decrease to migraine, according to multiple studies where at least two are double-blind and placebo controlled.


Because it can be tedious and expensive to find, purchase, and swallow all of these nootropics separately, I'm working with a chemist to combine some of them. Assuming that works out, I may also open an online store to sell a combined nootropic, in one place at a price significantly below that of purchasing components separately. If you're interested in trying it out for yourself, add your name and email to my list. [Update on 4/6/2016: Good news! The combined nootropic, Thrivous Clarity, is now available for purchase.]

Finally, please remember to consult a medical professional before and during your use of these or any other nootropics or supplements. And do your own research to verify advice you receive from them, from me, or from anyone else.

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[Thanks for reading! You might also like the updated and maintained version of this article, "These 12 Nootropics Are the Real Smart Drugs", at the Thrivous website.]
Lincoln Cannon
Mormon Transhumanist Association
Christian Transhumanist Association
The New God Argument
Thrivous
Discerner
Lincoln Cannon LLC
Clarity Natural Nootropic Improve Memory and Cognition