Supplements

CoQ10 (short for CoEnzyme Q10) is a compound that helps generate energy in our cells. It is beneficial in various ways, especially for different disorders related to cellular energy production, metabolism, and oxidative injury. Research reveals CoQ10 to be most promising to neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s disease – for which CoEnzyme Q10 has gained high popularity.

Overview

What is CoQ10?

Coenzyme Q10 (2,3 dimethoxy-5 methyl-6-decaprenyl benzoquinone) is a fat-soluble, vitamin-like quinone commonly known as ubiquinone, CoQ, and vitamin Q10. It is available in more than 100 single-ingredient and combination-ingredient products, and in 2002 it accounted for more than $200 million in sales in the United States. [1]

Coenzyme Q10 was first isolated in 1957 in beef mitochondria and is found in the highest concentrations in tissues with high energy turnover such as the heart, brain, liver, and kidney.

CoQ10 is a ubiquitous compound vital to several activities related to energy metabolism.

Because dysfunctional energy metabolism has been cited as a contributing factor for several conditions, coenzyme Q10 has been indicated in the treatment of cardiac, neurologic, oncologic, and immunologic disorders.

Although the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994 does not allow claims for treatment of specific diseases in the United States, coenzyme Q10 has been cleared for treatment indications in other countries, such as congestive heart failure (CHF) in Japan since 1974.

This fat-soluble substance, which resembles a vitamin, is present in all respiring eukaryotic cells, primarily in the mitochondria. It is a component of the electron transport chain. It participates in aerobic cellular respiration, which generates energy in ATP. Ninety-five percent of the human body's energy is caused this way. Therefore, those organs with the highest energy requirements, such as the heart, liver, and kidney, have the highest CoQ10 concentrations.

There are three redox states of CoQ10: fully oxidized (ubiquinone), semiquinone (ubisemiquinone), and fully reduced (ubiquinol). The capacity of this molecule to act as a two-electron carrier (moving between the quinone and quinol form) and a one-electron carrier (moving between the semiquinone and one of these other forms) is central to its role in the electron transport chain due to the iron–sulfur clusters that can only accept one electron at a time, and as a free-radical–scavenging antioxidant.” Wikipedia

According to Nootropics Depot:

Coenzyme Q10 (also known as CoQ10) is, as the name suggests, a coenzyme. CoQ10, via its action as a coenzyme, can drive many cellular processes throughout our bodies. Although not classified as a vitamin, CoQ10 closely resembles the structure of vitamin K and it appears that CoQ10 benefits resemble vitamin-like effects. This also hints at an important aspect of CoQ10: it is essential for overall human health. Without CoQ10, many bodily functions would may not work properly. Luckily our bodies are fairly good at preserving CoQ10, and CoQ10 deficiencies are rare. That said, taking a CoQ10 supplement still may have some remarkable effects on overall health.

Supplementing with extra CoEnzyme Q10, alongside a healthy diet, can benefit all the following:

  1. Support cardiovascular health
  2. Support metabolic function
  3. Improve cognitive function
  4. Support brain health (being a neuroprotectant)

Many of CoQ10 benefits are attributed to its help in producing ATP energy. This essential molecule drives most biological processes. CoQ10 is also known as a redox molecule, which allows it to transfer between fully oxidized and fully reduced states. Through its redox actions, CoQ10 can help power our cells while also helping protect them from oxidative stress. This all sounds great on paper, right? However, CoQ10, in its crystalline form, is faced with some significant issues and may not be able to produce all of the CoQ10 benefits mentioned above.

Benefits & Effects

What Are CoQ10 Benefits?

  1. Enhances and Sharpens Mental Capabilities
  2. Boosts Energy and Reduces Fatigue
  3. Boosts Mitochondrial Health & Function
  4. Reduces Stress and Free Radicals Damage
  5. Supports Fertility
  6. Combats Statin Drug Side Effects
  7. Cancer Prevention Potential
  8. Powerful Antioxidant & Neuroprotectant
  9. Protects Blood Vessels and Enhances Blood Flow

Supporting research

Enhances and Sharpens Mental Capabilities

Coenzyme Q10 may also present significant benefits to your cognition. Studies found that individuals with higher levels of CoQ10 showed greater mental sharpness, increased mental energy, and greater performance on a variety of mental tests. In contrast, those with lower levels of Coenzyme Q10 had greater difficulty concentrating, experienced brain fog, were slower in their mental processing, and showed general cognitive decline. Some researchers suggest that taking Coenzyme Q10 early enough may decrease your chances of suffering memory loss as a result of aging.

Boosts Energy and Reduces Fatigue

Some studies also show that Coenzyme Q10 may help to reduce physical fatigue, increase energy, improve exercise capacity, and expedite recovery from exercise.

Boosts Mitochondrial Health & Function

In studies of eight to 44 patients, Coenzyme Q10 demonstrated positive trends in reducing symptoms associated with selected mitochondrial abnormalities including the mitochondrial encephalopathy, lactic acidosis, and stroke-like episodes (MELAS) syndrome, Kearns-Sayre syndrome, and the myoclonus epilepsy with ragged-red fibers (MERRhF) syndrome. [R]

Reduces Stress and Free Radicals Damage

Oxidative damage (or free radical damage) of cell structures plays an important role in the functional declines that accompany aging and cause disease. As both a water- and fat-soluble antioxidant, CoQ10 has been found to inhibit lipid peroxidation, which occurs when cell membranes and low-density lipoproteins are exposed to oxidizing conditions that enter from outside the body. [R]

Supports Fertility

The antioxidant properties of CoQ10 could help improve sperm quality and reduce the decline in the number and quality of eggs in women. Supplementing with CoQ10 seems to help and may even reverse this age-related decline in egg quality and quantity.

Female fertility decreases with age due to a decline in the number and quality of available eggs. CoQ10 is directly involved in this process. As you age, CoQ10 production slows, making the body less effective at protecting the eggs from oxidative damage. [R]

Combats Statin Drug Side Effects

Statins are drugs that help lower cholesterol but often come along with a host of side effects.

Patients suffering from statin-related muscle pain, muscle strength degradation, and decreased aerobic activity can increase performance through daily intake of CoQ10 without other symptoms.

“Statin drugs can induce rhabdomyolysis (muscle death) which release rhabdomyosarcoma cells into the bloodstream, degrading other tissues. Human rhabdomyosarcoma cells treated with a CoQ10 supplement alongside simvastatin reversed muscle death and killed off remaining sarcoma cells.” [R]

Cancer Prevention Potential

Low levels of CoQ10 have been associated with up to a 53.3% higher risk of cancer and indicate a poor prognosis for various types of cancer [R]

CoQ10 plays a critical role in the protection of cell DNA and cell survival, both of which are strongly linked to cancer prevention and recurrence.

Powerful Antioxidant & Neuroprotectant

Antioxidants are necessary for neutralizing harmful compounds known as free radicals, which are created when cells undergo oxidation. Free radicals can promote cell death, mutate DNA, and damage cell membranes. CoQ10 may help to eliminate free radicals and prevent the damage they can cause. Some studies even suggest that CoQ10 may recharge other antioxidant compounds and nutrients.

Within mitochondria, coenzyme Q10 has been found to protect membrane proteins and DNA from the oxidative damage that accompanies lipid peroxidation and neutralize free radicals directly that contribute to nearly all age-related diseases (heart disease, cancer, diabetes, neurological disease, etc.). [R]

Protects Blood Vessels and Enhances Blood Flow

According to Nootropics Depot, one of the most popular companies that manufactures nootropics, CoQ10 can protect your blood vessels and enhance your blood flow. This is partly caused by preservation of nitric oxide, a signaling molecule that relaxes the arteries. This may improve overall circulation and cardiovascular health.

COQ10 can reduce the damage oxidized Low-density Lipoprotein (LDL) can do to blood vessels, as well as reduce plaque buildup in the arteries.

Mechanism of Action

How Does CoQ10 Work?

Coenzyme Q10 is vital for the proper transfer of electrons within the mitochondrial oxidative respiratory chain, whose main function is adenosine triphosphate production. Coenzyme Q10 also appears to increase adenosine triphosphate levels by preventing the loss of the adenine nucleotide pool from cardiac cells.4 Additionally, coenzyme Q10 has demonstrated activity in preventing lipid peroxidation as an antioxidant scavenger and an indirect stabilizer of calcium channels to decrease calcium overload.

Much of the basic research in support of coenzyme Q10 supplementation has focused on the CHF model. The myocardium of patients with CHF demonstrates increased oxidative stress as well as decreased concentrations of coenzyme Q10 as confirmed by tissue assays.8 These levels appear to correlate with CHF severity in the animal and human model, with coenzyme Q10 supplementation protecting against ischemia and reperfusion injury in animal studies.

Ubiquinol vs. Ubiquinone

Coenzyme Q10 can occur in multiple different forms in the body, and the two most abundant forms are oxidized CoQ10 (ubiquinone) and reduced CoQ10 (ubiquinol). Many people tend to prefer ubiquinol, due to its oxidation reducing effects in the body. However, due to this, the lesser desired ubiquinone often times gets overlooked. This is a shame because it actually has some very unique effects! Ubiquinone plays a major role in the electron transport chain, acting as a shuttle for cellular energy. Due to the fact that ubiquinone CoQ10 is hydrophobic and lipophilic, it can freely move between hydrophobic regions in the inner membranes of mitochondrion. It moves by way of passive diffusion, so no energy is needed to move CoQ10 around in the mitochondrion.

Ubiquinone stores energy temporarily, and is able to move it through the electron transport chain. It does this by attaching an electron to its benzoquinone head. It can accept electrons from various different systems, such as NADH-Q reductase. Ubiquinone transports these electrons from complex I and complex II of the electron transport chain, to complex III of the electron transport chain. While it does this, it also transports protons, which generates a proton gradient across the inner mitochondrial membrane. As these protons flow back across the inner mitochondrial membrane, it directly helps form adenosine triphosphate (ATP). This is in addition to ubiquinone already enhancing ATP synthesis by transporting electrons throughout the electron transport chain.

Dosage

How To Take CoQ10?

The standard dose for CoQ10 is generally 90mg for a low dose and 200mg for the higher dose, taken once daily with a meal due to its reliance on food for absorption.

There generally isn't too much of a therapeutic effect of CoQ10 supplementation (mostly taken with the ‘just in case' mentality that pervades multivitamin supplementation), although for people who have previously experience a heart attack or damage to cardiac tissue as well as for people on statin therapy supplementation becomes much more important. CoQ10 supplements can be either the oxidized form (ubiquinone) or reduced form (ubiquinol) as both forms seem pretty equally potent in increasing circulating levels of total CoQ10 in the body. ‘Total CoQ10′ refers to the sum of both forms, since CoQ10 can readily swap between forms as it acts in the body. – Examine.com

Frequently Asked Questions

What is CoQ10?

Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is a natural antioxidant synthesized by the body, found in many foods, and available as a supplement. It comes in two forms: ubiquinol, the active antioxidant form, and ubiquinone, the oxidized form, which the body partially converts to ubiquinol. Many multi-ingredient supplements contain both forms of CoQ10. In general, coenzymes support enzymes in their various biochemical functions. CoQ10 is a vital participant in the chain of metabolic chemical reactions that generate energy within cells. It is found in every cell of the body (the name ubiquinone stems from its ubiquity), but is present in higher concentrations in organs with higher energy requirements such as the kidneys, liver, and heart. Many medical studies demonstrate CoQ10 benefits when taken as a supplement, most of which stem from its vital role in oxygen utilization and energy production, particularly in heart muscle cells.

Why is CoQ10 necessary?

Coenzyme Q10 is beneficial for heart health in many ways. It assists in maintaining the normal oxidative state of LDL cholesterol, helps assure circulatory health, and supports optimal functioning of the heart muscle. CoQ10 may also help support the health of vessel walls. In addition, Coenzyme Q10 may play a role in reducing the number and severity of migraine headaches, and improving sperm motility in men. Some research has indicated therapeutic value in high doses to slow the progression of Parkinson’s disease, but a 2011 study by the National Institute for Neurological Disease and Stroke found no benefit in slowing symptoms or neural degeneration. A few small clinical trials have indicated CoQ10 supplementation may help prevent and treat inflamed gums, a condition known as gingivitis.

What are the signs of a Coenzyme Q10 deficiency?

Studies in both animals and humans have associated significantly decreased levels of CoQ10 with a wide variety of diseases. Since this enzyme is found in high concentration in heart muscle cells, deficiency has been associated with cardiovascular problems including angina, arrhythmia, heart failure and high blood pressure. Problems with blood sugar regulation, gingival (gum) health, and stomach ulcers have also been associated with CoQ10 deficiency. Those who are taking statins to lower cholesterol are at particular risk for deficiency, because not only do statins reduce cholesterol levels, but they also block CoQ10 synthesis in the body. Low CoQ10 levels in patients on statins can contribute to the common side effects of statin therapy such as fatigue and aching joints and muscles.

How much, and what kind of Coenzyme Q10, does an adult need?

There is no official Daily Value recommendation, but its suggested at least 90 to 120 mg of supplemental CoQ10 for any adult taking statin medications and for those with a family history of heart problems, or who is at increased risk for cardiovascular disease. This dosage is also appropriate for otherwise healthy men and women as a preventive measure and to help maintain a healthy cardiovascular system. CoQ10 is fat-soluble, so take the supplement with a meal containing fat. Seek out the soft-gel ubiquinol form when taking CoQ10 as a standalone supplement, as this has greater antioxidant efficiency than the ubiquinone form.

Is COQ10 harmful?

Of course not! The coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is vital for human metabolism, and is best known for its roles in glucose and fatty acid conversion to ATP, the form of energy used to power most body functions and as a powerful antioxidant in cells, inhibiting lipid peroxidation in cell membranes, DNA and low-density lipoproteins (LDL). Studies show that when taken daily, CoQ10 supplements are capable of significantly reducing oxidative damage. Also note that CoQ10’s levels in skin decline with age, which may also make your skin more susceptible to oxidative damage. The key thing that impacts the effectiveness of CoQ10 supplements is that many of them have relatively poor bioavailability due to limited solubility. Thus, it is helpful to go for solubilized forms of CoQ10 which allow for 90-100 percent of dissolution, and which have been improved absorption.

Creatine is a highly-effective supplement that boosts body mass, strength, and workout efficiency. It offers several health benefits such as neuroprotection, energy production, and is regarded as one of the world's safest and most effective supplements.

Overview

What is Creatine?

Creatine is a naturally occurring substance in muscle cells. It enables your muscles to generate energy during heavy lifting or high-intensity workouts. Creatine is a supplement that is common among athletes and bodybuilders for muscle building, strength building, and exercise efficiency. It shares many similarities with amino acids chemically. Your body can generate glycine and arginine from the amino acids. Various factors affect the store of your body's creatines such as food absorption, exercise, body mass and hormone concentrations, such as testosterone and IGF-1 Around 95% of your body's Creatine is stored in the muscles as phosphocreatine. The remaining 5% are discovered in your brain, kidneys, and liver. When you add, you boost your phosphocreatine shops. This is a type of energy stored in the cells because it enables your body to generate more of a potent molecule called ATP. ATP is often referred to as the energy currency of the body. Your body can perform better during practice if you have more ATP. Creatine also changes several cellular mechanisms leading to enhanced muscle mass, strength, and recuperation. The primary function is to boost the phosphocreatine stores in your muscles during high-intensity exercises. The newly stored phosphocreatine can then be used to generate more ATP, the critical source of electricity for lifting, and high-intensity training. Creatine also enables you to achieve many muscles by boosting your workload: Enables full working or quantity in a single workout, which is a critical factor in the longer-term development of your muscle Improving cell signals: Can enhance cell signaling by satellite, which helps to repair muscles and build new muscle development. Creatine supplementation can decrease these concentrations, increases creatine potential growth supplements can also boost the amount of phosphocreatine in your brain, which can enhance brain health, and prevent neurological disease. “Creatine provides more power for your body and modifications in cell function that improve the development of muscles.” Creatine effects on the gain of muscle are helpful for both short and long-term muscle development. 14-week research in older adults found that adding Creatine to a weight training program considerably increases the power of the arm and muscle weight. Creatine enhanced muscle fiber development two to three times more than exercise alone in 12-week research of weightlifters. The rise in total body mass has also increased for the bench press, a frequent strength exercise, along with one-return max. An extensive overview of the most common supplements chosen Creatine as the single most advantageous alternative for adding muscle mass. The supplementation with Creatine may lead to significant rises of muscle mass. This applies to untrained people as well as elite athletes. In one assessment, Creatine added to a training program enhanced weightlifting performance by 8% by 14% and bench pressure up to a maximum of 43% compared with practice alone. In well-trained athletes, 28 days of bike-sprint performance improved by 15% and bench-press performance by 6%. Creatine also helps retain strength and training during intensive over workout while improving muscle mass. These significant improvements are mainly due to the enhanced ability of your body to generate ATP. Usually, after 8-10 seconds of high-intensity activity, ATP gets depleted. However, because creatine supplements assist you to generate more ATP, the ideal efficiency can be maintained for a few seconds longer. Creatine is one of the most excellent supplements to enhance strength and exercise efficiency. It operates by improving your ATP energy generation ability. Like your muscles, your brain stores phosphocreatine and needs plenty of ATP to perform optimally. Additionally, the following can enhance:
  1. Alzheimer's disease
  2. Parkinson's disease
  3. Ischemic stroke
  4. Epilepsy
  5. brain or spinal cord injury
  6. Motor-neuronal disease
  7. Memory and brain function
Despite potential neurological disease advantages, most recent studies have been conducted in humans. However, six-month research has found a 70 percent decrease in fatigue in kids with traumatic brain injury and a 50 percent decrease in dizziness. Human studies suggest that Creatine can also help elderly adults, vegetarians, and neurologically vulnerable people. Vegetarians tend to have small storehouses of Creatine because they do not consume the most natural source of food. Although Creatine can benefit elderly and disabled adults, in healthy adults, it has no impact on brain function. Creatine may decrease symptoms and slow the development of certain neurological conditions, although more study is required in humans. Other Health Benefits Research has also shown that Creatine can improve muscle performance and quality of life of older adults. However, more study in these fields is required. Creatine can fight high blood sugar and fatty liver disease and enhance muscle function in older adults. Different types of supplements Creatine monohydrate is the most common and well-researched type of supplementation. There are many other types available, some promoted as superior, although there is no proof of this impact. Creatine monohydrate is very inexpensive, and hundreds of research support it. It seems to be the best choice until the new study says otherwise. The best type of Creatine that you can take is creatine monohydrate that you have been using and studying for decades. Many individuals who supplement begin the loading stage, leading to a fast rise in creatine muscle shops. Take 20 grams a day for 5–7 days to load with Creatine. This should be divided into four 5-gram portions all day long. The associated release of insulin can mildly enhance absorption of carbohydrate or protein food. After the charging period, take 3 to 5 grams a day to keep your muscles healthy. Because cycling creatine has no advantage, you can stay with this dosage for a long time. If you choose not to complete the charging stage, 3–5 grams per day can be consumed. However, maximizing your shops can take 3–4 weeks. Since Creatine pulls water into your muscle cells, we recommend taking it with a glass of water and remaining hydrated all day long. Take 5 grams four times a day for 5-7 days when loading with Creatine. Then take 3-5 grams per day to keep up. Creatine is one of the most extensively researched supplements available, and studies of up to four years show no harmful impacts. One of the most extensive research measured 52 blood markers and no effects after 21 months of supplementation were observed. There is also no proof that Creatine harms the liver and kidneys of healthy, regularly dosed individuals. That said, a doctor should consult those with preexisting liver or kidney issues before supplementation. Although creatines are associated with dehydration and cramps, the study does not support this connection. Studies indicate that cramps and dehydration in high heat stamina can be reduced. There are no damaging side effects on Creatine. Although dehydration and cramps are frequently thought to cause, studies do not support this. Conclusion Creatine is one of the cheapest, most efficient, and safest additives. It promotes quality of life, brain health, and practice in elderly adults. Vegetarians— who may not get sufficient Creatine from their diet— may find supplements especially helpful for elderly adults. The best type is probably creatine monohydrate. Try Creatine today to see whether it works for you.

Choline is an essential nutrient, and the precursor for neurotransmitter acetylcholine. Acetylcholine interacts directly with many functions such as the liver, brain, and nerve functions. It further extends to muscle control, energy level, as well as the metabolic process.

Overview

What is Choline?

Choline is an essential nutrient crucial for liver, brain, and nerve functions. It is also important for muscle motion and energy levels, as well as the metabolic process. It exists as phosphatidylcholine, a substance that comprises the structural part of the fat, hence discoverable in many types of foods. Naturally consisting of particular fats.

Choline – (also known as choline bitartrate, and trimethylethanolamine) is an essential nutrient. It is crucial for liver, brain, and nerve function. As well as muscle motion, energy levels and the metabolic process. It exists as phosphatidylcholine, a substance that comprises the structural part of the fat, hence discoverable in many types of foods. Naturally consisting of particular fats. 

Choline plays a major role in crucial procedures within the body. Mots of which perform multiple times a day. It is a water-soluble nutrient that belongs to other vitamins, such as folate and those in the B vitamin complex household. Much like B vitamins, choline plays a comparable function in regards to supporting energy and brain function, along with keeping the metabolic process active.When Does Supplementing with Choline Becomes Necessary?

Choline assists in the procedure of methylation, which is utilized to produce DNA, for nerve signaling, and detoxing. It’s also essential for performance of a critical neurotransmitter: acetylcholine.
Acetylcholine also assists nerves in interaction as well as functioning as an anti-aging neurotransmitter. It carries out other fundamental functions. Neither a mineral nor a vitamin, Choline is rather an ‘essential nutrient’, required for many of the body’s functions. And particularly for brain function.
While at this time there isn’t a Recommended Daily Intake for Choline developed by the USDA, it’s crucial to prevent a choline-deficiency. Lack of which is explained further on in the article.

Recommended Daily Intake

The Recommended Daily Intake ranges between 280 to 550 mg depending on a number of factors as shown in the table below

  • Infants (under 1): 125 – 150 mg
  • Children (1-8): 150 – 250 mg
  • Kids (8-13): 250 – 375 mg
  • Girls (14 & over): 425–550 mg
  • Guys (14 & over): 500 – 550 mg
  • Pregnant: 450 – 550 mg
  • Breastfeeding: 500 – 550 mg

Best Choline Sources

Choline is naturally found in foods such as eggs, liver, beef, salmon, cauliflower, Brussel sprouts, and breast milk. Eggs are in some cases called “brain food” because they are known for providing high quantities of choline. The following is some of the foods high in choline, providing high levels of choline naturally, in addition to lots of other nutrients. All portions listed are based upon the advised quantity of 550 mg daily. Choline foods list below

High Choline Foods

  • Beef Liver: 3 ounces: 283 mg (51% DV)
  • Salmon: 1 filet: 242 mg (44% DV)
  • Chickpeas: 1 cup raw: 198 mg (36% DV)
  • Split Peas: 1 cup raw: 188 mg (34% DV)
  • Navy Beans: 1 cup raw: 181 mg (32% DV)
  • Eggs: 1 big egg: 147 mg (27% DV)
  • Grass-Fed Beef: 3 ounces: 78 mg (14% DV)
  • Turkey: 3 ounces: 57 mg (10% DV)
  • Chicken Breast: 3 ounces: 50 mg (9% DV)
  • Cauliflower: 1 cup raw: 47 mg (8% DV)
  • Goat Milk: 1 cup: 39 mg (7% DV)
  • Brussel Sprouts: 1 cup raw: 17 mg (3% DV)

Acetylcholine and Depression

Chronic increase in acetylcholine can also cause anxiety or depressive symptoms.

Rodent studies confirm that increasing ACh levels by treating with physostigmine acutely can induce anxiety- and depression-like behaviors, whereas chronic treatment with the serotonergic antidepressant fluoxetine increases levels and activity of AChE, particularly in the hippocampus. Local administration of physostigmine or knockdown of AChE in the hippocampus is sufficient to increase anxiety- and depression-like behaviors that can be reversed by administration of fluoxetine, suggesting that they are consistent with symptoms of depression. Taken together, these studies show that hyperactive ACh signaling in hippocampus can contribute to depressive symptoms.

AChE is the enzyme that breaks down acetylcholine. The more active the enzyme is the faster acytylcholine breaks and the less it will effect a neuron. So increasing activity of AChE means decreasing acetylcholine and vice versa.

Optogenetic stimulation of cholinergic terminals in CA1 also increases activity of α4/β2* nAChRs and depolarizes a subpopulation of GABAergic interneurons in the stratum lacunosum moleculare, suggesting that one mechanism underlying the effects of cholinergic signaling on anxiety and depression may be activation of inhibitory interneurons. In contrast, lower levels of cholinergic stimulation in CA1 hyperpolarizes a subset of interneurons via M4 mAChRs and entrains others into a rhythmic bursting pattern. Elevated ACh may therefore modulate hippocampal activity by switching CA1 networks from a quiescent or stable bursting state, to a more depolarized state with a higher level of firing.

Cholinergic signaling in the hippocampus, amygdala, prefrontal cortex (PFC), and striatum modulates behavioral responses to stressors. Despite the fact that global and hippocampal increases in ACh tone result in anxiety- and depression-like behaviors, the effects of cholinergic signaling on stress-related behaviors are complex and vary across brain areas. Stress induces release of ACh in the hippocampus and PFC but not the amygdala, perhaps because the basal firing rate of medial septal neurons innervating the amygdala is high and stress cannot further increase ACh levels. Similarly, basal ACh tone in the striatum is high due to tonic firing of intrinsic cholinergic interneurons, and behaviorally relevant stimuli result in a pause in their firing leading to cue-dependent learning. These findings suggest that healthy behavior is dependent on appropriately balanced cholinergic signaling across brain regions (Fig. 2). [R]

Benefits and Effects

What Are the Benefits of Choline?

  1. Central Nervous System Support
  2. Neuroprotective Against Cognitive Degeneration
  3. Improves Cognitive Function, Attention and Mood
  4. Improves Memory
  5. Helps Schizophrenia, Bipolar, and Autism
  6. Increases Energy, Athletic Performance and Power Output
  7. Speeds up Recovery

Supporting research:

Central Nervous System Support

Choline helps form tissue within the nervous system that plays a part in brain development and growth. It can improve signaling capacity of nerves, support structural integrity, and protect vital neuronal membranes. [R]

Neuroprotective Against Cognitive Degeneration

Another advantage of choline is its capability to keep your mind mentally sharp as you age.

Since it belongs to cell membranes and neurotransmitters that utilizes nerve signaling, choline also contributes to memory perseverance and preventing dementia, amnesia and other cognitive degeneration conditions.

As we age, our brain become less flexible. Choline does a crucial task here. It preserves brain flexibility by working to maintain levels of acetylcholine, which naturally decrease in the process of aging. Some studies suggest low levels of acetylcholine might cause a cognitive decline, that being inclusive of Alzheimer's and dementia. [R]

Clients who develop Alzheimer's often show a deficiency in acetylcholine levels. Some medications prescribed to manage Alzheimer's do so by simulate choline's impact of increasing this neurotransmitter's levels. [R]

Improves Cognitive Function, Attention and Mood

Acetylcholine is vital for brain function. Cognitive decline is often due to lack of sufficient acetylcholine levels within the brain. [R]

In 1391 individuals, greater choline consumption associated with better cognitive efficiency in spoken as well as visual memory. [R]

One research study reveals that subjects taking CDP-choline + caffeine drinks had measurable enhancement in cognitive capabilities [R]

Sixty healthy adult females aged 40– 60 who took CDP-choline for 28 days notice improving attention [R]

This elevating effect is explainable by the additional choline present, which increases attentiveness and promotes clarity. It’s also a link to its production of human growth hormone, which provides energizing, longevity effects. [R] In combination with other nootropics, it offers adequate choline to achieve optimal cognitive enhancement effects, and it prevents the minor headaches often associates use of Piracetam and pretty much all its derivatives.

Improves Memory

The best recognition of it goes to its capacity in improving memory. This effect is mainly due to the increase of choline it makes available for conversion to acetylcholine, which is profoundly correlating with cognitive functions and the ability to create and revive memories. Studies confirm its efficacy as treatment for memory impairment due to aging; including Alzheimer's and dementia.

It has further proven to be capable of recovering memory in volunteers following brief chemically-induced amnesia. [R1R2R3]

Helps Schizophrenia, Bipolar, and Autism

Schizophrenia and autism developed due to genetic predispositions may also be avoided by prenatal choline supplements. [R]

In rats, it was found that prenatal choline supplements can help reduce the likelihood of at-risk subjects developing these disorders later on in life. [R]

In a study performed on subjects with Schizophrenia, subjects taking CDP-choline showed improved cognition and working memory after treatment. [R]

A few studies have shown that choline could help treat bipolar disorder and may be a useful complement to pharmaceutical interventions. [R]

Increases Energy, Athletic Performance and Power Output, and Speeds up Recovery

Because it stimulates the production of human growth hormone (HGH), Alpha-GPC is valuable for individuals looking to perform better, increase lean muscle mass, feel peak energy during workouts and recover quickly afterward. A pilot study shows that 600 mg of Alpha-GPC taken 90 minutes before bench pressing increases power output by 14%. [R123]

Mechanism of Action

How Does Choline Work?

Citicoline restores and repairs neuronal damage, increases dopamine levels in the central nervous system, as well as enhances production of neurotransmitter acetylcholine. Acetylcholine is especially important for those using racetams.

After ingestion, it breaks down into choline, and cytidine. After which it flows throughout the body and easily crosses the blood-brain barrier. The cytidine then converts into uridine; a nucleotide base essential to neural membrane synthesis. The choline release is cholinergic, increasing levels of choline within the brain.

Choline is a precursor to acetylcholine and vital to most cognitive functions. In particular to the ones relating to memory and learning.

Racetams are acetylcholine agonists compounds . They increase production and release of acetylcholine. When sufficient choline is available, it creates notable cognitive improvements such as memory improvement and heighten focus. Additionally, it prevents racetam headaches.

Choline 1 Nootropics Information

On Acetylcholine

It is a fundamental associate of many cognitive functions including memory formation, learning capacity, and attention. By stimulating the production of acetylcholine, it acts as a neuroprotectant; maintaining neuronal health and preventing potential damage. [R] [R]

On Dopamine

Oral ingestion of Alpha-GPC can also be dopaminergic, by increasing dopamine release during neuronal action potentials and possibly by stimulating the expression of receptors. It also has involvement in increasing brain serotonin concentrations following oral administration. [R]

Dosage

How To Take Choline?

Alpha-GPC digests and absorbs smoothly and is gentle on the stomach taken at the typical dose of 300mg. Although many nootropists tend to prefer a dose of 600mg, with a total daily intake ranging from 300 to 1200 mg, either at once or split into two doses.

Personally I find 300mg is effective enough especially because I almost always take it as part of a stack. Frequently with Aniracetam, Phenylpiracetam, Coluracetam, or Noopept. On the few occasions where I took it on its own, I still felt very at ease and eager to produce, learn, move.

As with any other nootropic, start with the lowest effective dose and build up gradually as desired.

Side Effects

What Are the Side Effects of Choline?

Some side effects rarely occur, such as headaches, fatigue, nervousness, nausea, diarrhea and gastrointestinal distress. It may rarely induce dizziness and low blood pressure in some individuals.

Personally never experienced any side effects from its use. But I’ve never taken more than 300mg in one dose (Alpha-GPC) and never more than 600mg in a 24-hours frame.

Conclusion

Choline is an excellent memory enhancing and focus amplifying nootropic that can be (and should be) added to almost any stack. Using it on its own is effective enough for that mild stimulation and to fire your focus. Then pair it with a racetam, and the effects of both are amplified to an amazing extent.

Furthermore, it provides neuroprotection. That is something anyone can benefit from due to many reasons. Such as environmental changes and the accumulation of oxidative stress in today’s world. It is very well tolerated and safe — there are no reports of serious adverse effects (on CDP-choline), and enlighten me if I’m wrong.

Moreover, its an approved medical treatment in Europe for a number of conditions relating to cognitive impairment, Ischemic Stroke, to mention a few.

Choline nootropics are affordable and easily accessible. Alpha-GPC is supposedly the most expensive out of the choline supplements. I've used both that and CDP-choline, both of which had identical effects. As a matter of fact, only now I started realizing that I might have been feeling citicoline more profoundly than I tend to feel Alpha-GPC. (I prefer it generally because it adds so much convenience to my life, when getting it along with a bunch of preformulated good mix in MindLab Pro.

It is worth buying for anyone looking after cognition boost and overall brain health. But especially worth it for those using multiple nootropics at a time, including racetams. Personally, at this point, I would not even bother taking a racetam if I don’t have a choline source to pair it with.

Further Readings

  1. Alpha-GPCCiticoline (CDP-choline)
  2. Aniracetam
  3. Piracetam
  4. Phenylpiracetam
  5. Oxiracetam
  6. Fasoracetam
  7. Coluracetam
  8. Sunifiram
  9. Noopept.
  10. The Ultimate Nootropics FAQ

Sulbutiamine is a nootropic that boosts energy levels and reduces fatigue. It's an ideal choice on days when you're feeling tired, slow, or hungover. Furthermore, Sulbutiamine elevates mood and has a substantial impact on memory.

Overview

What is Sulbutiamine?

Sulbutiamine (brand name: Arcalion) is a synthetic derivative of thiamine (vitamin B1). In France, it is used to treat symptoms of weakness or fatigue. It also sells as a dietary supplement. 

A discovery from Japan as part of an effort to develop useful thiamine derivatives. [R]

It is an upgraded version of vitamin B1. Japanese researchers developed it in the 1960s while trying to address a growing vitamin B1 deficiency in the Japanese population. [R]

Sulbutiamine supplement is unusually bioavailable — in other words, you absorb it very well, and unlike standard vitamin B1, sulbutiamine passes through your blood-brain barrier, supplying your brain with the precious B vitamin.[R]

Benefits and Effects

What Are Sulbutiamine Benefits?

  1. Decreases Fatigue and Improves Mood
  2. Relieves Anxiety, Depression
  3. Boosts Motivation
  4. Enhances Memory
  5. Improves Sexual Health & Performance

Supporting research:

Decreases Fatigue, Improves Mood

Several extensive studies have found that sulbutiamine significantly increases energy in people who are feeling fatigued. Sulbutiamine benefits Increase energy & stamina.

Enerion was used in the treatment of 40 patients with psychovegetative syndrome and asthenia. Before treatment, the patients have pronounced asthenia appearances, anxiety disorders, relevant autonomic disorders, mild depression and decrease of working capacity, attention concentration and memory. The treatment conducted as monotherapy during 28 days with enerion dosage 400 mg/day. After treatment, expression of autonomic and asthenic disorders was reduced significantly, along with improvement of psychometric and neurophysiological indices. High efficacy of the medication was in 75% of the patients and moderate one–in 25%.

PMID: 14628585

Relieves Anxiety, Depression, and Social Avoidance

Sulbutiamine has no antidepressive effect but it can hasten the resorption of psycho-behavioural inhibition occurring during major depressive disorder and thereby facilitate the rehabilitation of patients in their social, professional and family life functioning. [R]

Boosts Motivation

There is also some evidence that sulbutiamine increases dopamine and glutamate in your prefrontal cortex, which links to increased motivation and good mood. [R]

It has a growing number of fans in the nootropic community, many of whom report improved mood and heightened mental endurance.

Impact on Memory

Sulbutiamine is made up of two vitamin B1 molecules attached together, which could explain its effect on memory. Vitamin B1 plays an essential role in acetylcholine synthesis in your brain. In fact, it’s the only vitamin that regulates acetylcholine levels, keeping them from getting too low or too high. [R]

What is Acetylcholine?

Acetylcholine is a substance found throughout your nervous system, that acts as a neurotransmitter. Your brain uses most of its acetylcholine to control your muscles, which could explain why taking sulbutiamine helps so much with fatigue. But acetylcholine also plays a key part in memory; it helps you consolidate new memories and remember old ones.” [R]

Improves Sexual Performance

Sulbutiamine treatment for 30 days restored sexual performance in 16 patients out of 20 (open-label) with erectile dysfunction (caused by psychological issues) [R]

Mechanism of Action

How Does Sulbutiamine Work?

Sulbutiamine is a molecule which is two Thiamine (B1) molecules linking together, similar to how Pyritinol is two Pyridoxine (B6) molecules link together.

Sulbutiamine is a isobutyryl thiamine disulfide and sometimes goes by its brand names of Ereon or Arcalion. It is most commonly in use for Asthenia, or weakness (part neurological and part myopathic) as well as treatment of somatic and psychic inhibition. It doesn't possess psychostimulant properties, although it is designed to act centrally (in the brain). [1]

Sulbutiamine synthesizes from Thiamine, where after the opening of the thiazole ring of Thiamine and dimerization to a disulfide compound it is then esterified. [2]

Sulbutiamine is a fat-soluble molecule that crosses the blood-brain barrier more readily than thiamine. Once in your brain, it increases levels of thiamine pyrophosphate (TPP). Thiamine pyrophosphate (TPP) is directly involving in the citric acid cycle in the brain.

This cycle breaks fatty acids, amino acids, and monosaccharides into smaller molecules that produce adenosine triphosphate (ATP) energy for your mitochondria. And provide the building blocks of the electrons needed to generate brain cells. 

Dosage

How To Take Sulbutiamine?

Sulbutiamine supplement recommendation dose is 400mg. However, caution is necessary in regards to cycling sulbutiamine and not supplementing on daily basis.

Sulbutiamine dosage: 200-600 mg/day, taken in the morning. Sulbutiamine is fat-soluble (in fact, that’s the reason it can pass the blood-brain barrier and have all these nootropic properties), so be sure you take it with a fat source; otherwise, you won’t absorb it. [R]

Stack

Effective Sulbutiamine Stack

It’s quite rare to find recommendations of stacking sulbutiamine and out of all that I have come across, I think the best stack, or at least one that I would personally consider, is sulbutiamine, aniracetam, and choline stack. For example:

Sulbutiamine 200mg
Aniracetam 750mg
Alpha-GPC 300mg

Aniracetam & choline stack has been one of the most effective I have ever tried. Sulbutiamine supposedly stacks well with racetams and is a common choice due to similarities of effects on cognitive function. [R]

Side Effects

What Are Sulbutiamine Side Effects?

At standard doses (200-1000 mg), side effects could include a headache, nausea, and trouble sleeping.

People doing self-experiments with sulbutiamine, though, occasionally report anxiety and negative thoughts from taking higher doses (most of these side effects showed up around 1000-2000 mg). Others say they feel anxiety from taking sulbutiamine for too long without a break. [R]

User Experience

Reddit

Here is a sulbutiamine Reddit user experience from someone who's ADD (high five!) and prescribed Adderall:

…I only heard about nootropics for the first time around 9 months ago. Used to take Adderall for many years, but quit over 5 years ago because it was causing daily headaches and I suspected it was causing my chronic insomnia.

I have legit ADD, as well as what I would call brain fog, low level depression, lack of motivation. I've taken sulbutiamine a few times, and I have really good results with it. I only take it occasionally, when I have a big project I need to get done (because I don't want it to stop working, like I've read that it will if you take it often). I took it today because I had a lot of organization tasks I needed to do, and since I hate these kinds of tasks, I often lack motivation to start or complete them.

When I take my capsule, I can actually feel it start to kick in around 20-30 minutes after taking it. It reminds me a lot of how Adderall worked/felt but without that unexplainable “buzzy” feeling. I felt motivated and energized, and really got into my work. Just thought I'd share for any other noobs out there who haven't tried it yet.

Conclusion

If you decide to use sulbutiamine, be sure to cycle it. When you don’t take the occasional day off from sulbutiamine, it’s likely you’ll build a tolerance to its effects, and the sulbutiamine will stop working unless you increase the dose. [R]

Experiment is key to finding the dosage and cycle that's just right for you and your body composition.

Its a great choice to consider on days where you need extra mental functionality.

Sulbutiamine is becoming more and more popular in the biohacking community. If you’re curious, give it a try and see how you feel.

Further Readings

  1. Agmatine Sulfate
  2. Bacopa Monnieri
  3. Melatonin

Picamilon is a nootropic that enhances cognitive function and increases mental energy while reducing stress and anxiety. Its unique blend of energizing and relaxing impacts makes picamilon an outstanding supplement for learners during examination periods or anyone in stressful circumstances who could benefit from faster, clearer thinking.

Overview

What is Picamilon?

Picamilon is a distinctive nootropic that enhances cognitive function and increases mental energy while reducing stress and anxiety emotions. Its unique blend of energizing and relaxing impacts makes picamilon an outstanding supplement for learners facing examinations or for anyone in stressful circumstances who wants to think rapidly and clearly.

Picamilon's unique traits make it a truly distinctive supplement. It boosts brain function like all nootropics, enhancing memory, concentration, motivation, the span of attention, and overall productivity. However, its energizing impacts are only half the image; it also calms, relaxes, and generates a tranquilizing effect that decreases stress and anxiety emotions considerably.

This combination of energizing and calming effects, along with its low price, prepared accessibility, and absence of severe side effects, makes picamilon an increasingly common option for anyone who wishes to handle stress and anxiety while maximizing their cognitive skills.

Picamilon was first created in Russia somewhere between the years 1969 and 1971 as part of the Institute's studies into possibly performance-enhancing substances.

Today, picamilon is a prescription drug in Russia and is used to treat a range of conditions and disorders ranging from depression to migraine, neuroinfections, senile psychosis, certain kinds of glaucoma, and even acute intoxication with alcohol.

Benefits and Effects

What Are Picamilon Benefits?

  1. Improves Learning and Memory
  2. Supports Concentration, Focus, and Mental Stamina
  3. Mood Stabilization
  4. Relaxes Without Causing Drowsiness
  5. Reduces Blood Pressure
  6. Improves Sleep Quality

Supporting research:

Improves Learning and Memory

The wide variety of impacts of Picamilon includes both cognitive enhancement and mood management. It has been shown to promote faster and more comfortable learning pace as well as enhancing both memory retention and recall speed.

Supports Concentration, Focus, and Mental Stamina

By stimulating better blood flow and circulation in the brain, picamilon has critical beneficial impacts on a broad range of cognitive functions, including improving the capacity to concentrate on thinking and improving general mental energy or endurance.

Mood Stabilization

It has been shown that Picamilon has substantial anti-anxiety impacts, significantly decreasing stress effect. It can also assist relieve depression.

Relaxes Without Causing Drowsiness

Users report that taking picamilon outcomes in a pleasant sensation of relaxation without mental fog or grogginess that is usually associated with sedatives or tranquilizers. Most individuals say it provides them a feeling of “calm energy.”

Reduces Blood Pressure

While not positive in all instances, the capacity of picamilon to decrease blood pressure can be a significant advantage to those with hypertension that is enhanced by stress and anxiety.

Improves Sleep Quality

While a single supplement seems contradictory to increase energy and create rest better, many picamilon consumers claim it does just that. Since it is not a tranquilizer, sedative, or muscle relaxer, this impact could be due to the stress reduction and anti-anxiety characteristics of picamilon insignificant portion.

Mechanism of Action

How Does Picamilon Work?

Picamilon is a mixture of niacin and GABA or gamma-aminobutyric acid, two prevalent but essential nutrients. Separately each plays a critical role in brain health but linked to produce unique advantages in a compound that they respond synergistically.

Picamilon’s real strength is the capacity of the niacin element to cross the blood-brain barrier, a semi-permeable capillary filter intended to safeguard the brain and to bring with it the connected GABA element. As a result, GABA, a powerful neurotransmitter that can not cross the blood-brain barrier alone, is transferred into the central nervous system for use across the brain and body.

The real mechanism of action picamilon operates through is both fast and direct. It is a water-soluble compound that is easily absorbed and within an hour of ingestion reaches peak bioavailability.

Picamilon is hydrolyzed or chemically divided back into distinct parts of niacin or nicotinic acid and GABA after crossing the blood-brain barrier. The role of niacin acts as a vasodilator, increasing blood flow in the brain and enhancing oxygen and other nutrients absorption. At the same moment, this vital inhibitory neurotransmitter, which operates by decreasing neuronal excitability, raises the brain concentrations of the GABA element.

The cognitive enhancement impacts of Picamilon can be primarily ascribed to the enhanced effectiveness created by the improved circulation of the brain blood and oxygen absorption. The enhanced blood flow in the brain also enhances the delivery and uptake of glucose and other nutrients, which can boost alertness, concentrate, motivation, and brain energy as a whole. It is also thought to have an essential antioxidant impact that helps break down and remove toxins in the brain.

Picamilon's relaxing and calming impacts are produced by the enhanced concentrations of GABA, a powerful neurotransmitter that operates by inhibiting neuronal firing, decreasing stress and anxiety emotions by generating a slightly sedative impact.

Dosage

How To Take Picamilon?

Although picamilon is usually deemed well tolerated and has no severe side effects, it is a potent complement and should be used responsibly. It is wise, as with all supplements, to begin with, the smallest effective dosage possible and gradually boost as required.

Recommendations for daily dosage differ significantly, depending on the special effects you hope to experience in no small measure. Typical is a cumulative dosage of 50 to 400 mg per day, with most customers finding efficacy between 100 and 200 mg divided over two to three doses. However, it may be best for those mainly interested in cognitive enhancements of picamilon and lower dosages of overall mood stabilization, while those looking for significant rises in energy levels may want to create up to higher dosages.

Picamilon operates comparatively fast and is relatively durable. Users say that impacts are usually visible within one hour of intake and last for 4 to 6 hours. It is water-soluble and can be taken on an empty stomach in either capsule or powder form.

While some users prefer cycling picamilon with other nootropics with an anti-anxiety element, there is no negative impact of proof taking it daily.

Side Effects

What Are Picamilon Side Effects?

Picamilon is usually regarded as safe and well tolerated, but there have been reports of some side effects. The most severe prospective side effect is low blood pressure, so if you understand that you are susceptible to hypotension or have reason to worry about low blood pressure, you should consult a medical practitioner before taking picamilon.  

Allergies and rashes of the skin have been recorded as side effects, but are not prevalent. Such side effects typically include headaches, lightheadedness or dizziness, and nausea. Red skin flushing is also sometimes revealed as a standard and harmless side effect of niacin.

Stack

Picamilon can be taken alone daily, cycled with other supplements or combined with other nootropics in many ways.

The behavioral improvement characteristics of picamilon will be potentiated in a pile with racetam-class nootropics such as piracetam or pramiracetam. However, depending on which racetam supplement you are combining with picamilon, you may also experience, or both, increased energy or relaxation effects.

Combined with ampakine racetam supplements like aniracetam and oxiracetam, both of which have stimulant characteristics, the energy-boosting and mood-modulating impacts of picamilon will be increased.

Some users claim that combining picamilon with other supplements such as kava can boost their energy-producing characteristics while using it in conjunction with relaxing supplements such as valerian will strengthen their calming aspects.

Conclusion

Picamilon is a natural nootropic, and with excellent reason: it can both energize and relax, it is secure and well-tolerated, it has very few reported side effects, it combines well with other supplements, and it is inexpensive and easily accessible. Picamilon provides advantages that are difficult to beat for anyone who wishes or needs to handle their moods and retain ideal cognitive function under pressure.

MindLab Pro is a pre-formulated, all natural nootropic supplement. A blend of 11 natural and potent ingredients in 1 pill. It offers a great convenience while delivering measurable and obvious increases in physical and mental performance.

Overview

What is MindLab Pro?

I have come across Mind Lab Pro after the rebranding and introduction, and was immediately drawn to its overall presentation. I care about companies images just as much as I care about the product itself. After immersing myself into reading every word on the extensive ingredient list and description of each, I thought to myself, and I owe it to myself to give it a shot. The price was reasonable for the content, and I ordered my first bottle. Fast forward about a year later, I still have it standing amongst the first on my shelf. Except now I also have my mom and two sisters, as well as a friend or two, all enjoying supplementing and using it on a daily basis. We all got easily attracted to the product because of its moderate dosage, and commitment to natural ingredients. I don’t mind other nootropics but I know people who wouldn’t come near anything synthetic, so Mind Lab Pro seemed appealing to them. Each serving (2 pills) contains the following 11 “enhanced potency form” mindlab pro nootropic formula

What is in MindLab Pro?

The Formula

With such an impressive list of ingredients formulating together into one (or two) pills, it’s no surprise why Mind Lab Pro made quite a name for itself and maintaining a loyal, returning customers.

Benefits and Effects

What Are MindLab Pro Benefits?

Unlike any other nootropic on the website, it’s a little bit more challenging to list down the benefits and effects of using Mind Lab Pro because it consists of 11 different ingredients, each of which serves many benefits. However, you can click on each component and see the list of its benefits and effects. I’ve used it short term and long term and have seen results in both ways. What I like the most about Mind Lab Pro is the fact that it has citicoline, which means I can perfectly pair it with a racetam without having to get an additional choline source (currently I take Alpha GPC when taking racetams). As well as the fact that it also has Lion’s Mane Mushroom which I think is one of the most profound nootropics I have come across. So when I wake up in the morning and wanting to head out to work fast and arrive fresh and mentally prepared, (also because I’m almost always late), I would only take 2 pills instead of reaching out to 11 different containers and taking 1 by 1 – I am one who really goes the extra mile for convenience.

Side Effects

What Are MindLab Pro Side Effects?

Again, from personal experience, and at least six people that I know from friends and family, none of us have encountered any side effects that were leading back to Mind Lab Pro. I’ve recommended that they take it with a fat source for better absorption and to avoid any stomachache, but I almost always take it first thing in the morning and never had any adverse effects.

Personal Experience

Honestly, if anyone asks me for a recommendation when first starting on nootropics, I would recommend Mind Lab Pro. And I am not even an affiliate nor sponsored by them whatsoever (although I should be…)  – it is a genuine suggestion. It has many good ingredients and at moderate dosages. Beginners can easily understand the mix and expand their knowledge further intro nootropics if they wanted to. Moreover, I also really enjoy the (if not mistaken) buy two get 3rd free & buy three get 4th free. It makes a good value for money and always comes in handy for last minute packing, late and rushing situations, and can even be carried out in your bag on day to day basis unlike when you’re using a stack of different products. I don’t think I can't even fit all the containers I have from various companies in my car trunk.

Where to Buy Mind Lab Pro?

If you are in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, or anywhere in the UAE, you can get Mind Lab Pro from Nootropix. And in most cases it is in stock and delivers within a day or two.

Other Natural Nootropics

If you're into all natural nootropics, check you the following:
  1. Bacopa Monnieri
  2. Lion's Mane Mushroom
  3. Ashwagandha, as well as: Natural Herbs page.

Related Topics

Back to homepage.

Melatonin plays several roles in the body, including helping to regulate blood pressure, boost immune function, antioxidative, and manages cortisol levels, in addition to regulating the body’s circadian rhythm. That’s why melatonin is often referred to as the body’s sleep hormone.

Overview

What is Melatonin?

Melatonin is a multitasking hormone produced by the brain’s pinecone-shaped pineal gland. [R]

Melatonin plays several roles in the body, including helping to regulate blood pressure, boost immune function, and manage cortisol levels. [R] [R]

But melatonin is probably best known for its soporific powers. Chief among its responsibilities is regulating the body’s circadian rhythm so it knows when to rest and when to wake up. That’s why melatonin is often referred to as the body’s sleep hormone.

Benefits and Effects

What Are Melatonin Benefits?

  • Regulates Circadian Rhythm and Enhances Sleep Quality
  • Alleviates Anxiety and Depression Symptoms
  • Potent Antioxidant
  • Supports BDNF
  • Strengthens the Blood-Brain Barrier
  • Neuroprotectant
  • Replaces Benzos for Sleep

Supporting Research:

Regulates Circadian Rhythm and Enhances Sleep Quality

Melatonin increases the quality of sleep. The Circadian Rhythm influences the body’s sleeping habits. Think of it as a built-in clock that controls our bodies processes 24 hours a day. Scientists have observed that Melatonin normalizes the Circadian rhythm which can sometimes become distorted due to modern lifestyle. [R]

Alleviates Anxiety and Depression Symptoms

Conditions like depression and anxiety usually worsen by a disturbed, intermittent or a lack of a sleeping pattern. Having these disturbances regulated can alleviate the symptoms of these conditions, not mainly offering a cure but by far offering an improvement in the standard of life. [R]

Potent Antioxidant

Antioxidant enzymes roles within our bodies are to help clean the cells in our bodies and filter our bloodstream from harmful cells. Melatonin increases the rate at which our body produces these enzymes that would be naturally. These molecules in question can also bond to what is called Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) & Reactive Nitrogen Species (NOS) which can decrease the level of damage each of these can cause respectively.

The benefits directly from this are that Melatonin prevents any harm coming to your organ systems or tissues. These advantages combined make Melatonin a very useful protectorate within your body internally. These antioxidants can also have benefits for the most critical organ in our body, our brain. [R]

Supports BDNF

Nerve cells are also protected by the increase of these enzymes produced by Melatonin, having a positive onward affect towards the spinal cord including white matter and optic nerves. Its regeneration is down to something called the ‘Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor’ (BDNF); in simple terms, this is a protein responsible for the nerves regeneration and well-being within our brains. [R]

Strengthens the Blood-Brain Barrier

Melatonin strengthens the ever significant barrier between the brain and our blood. If the strength of this barrier were to deteriorate and for example leak, this can lead to cognitive dysfunction (also known as brain fog) and could potentially result in future to conditions such as Alzheimer’s. [R]

Neuroprotection

In addition to defending against conditions such as Alzheimer’s development, Melatonin can also aid as a coping mechanism for users who have Parkinson’s. Melatonin in tests was shown to prohibit cell death and brain damage, sometimes as a cause of a leaky blood-brain barrier.

Referring back to the regulation of sleep, this can also help people who, however, there is currently no proof it helps with any of the other side-effects of the condition. [R]

Benzodiazepine Replacement

Its widely known that benzos usually depress the natural levels of melatonin within our bodies. Our recommendation is if you are using one of these drugs for sleep, it would be wise to start using melatonin instead. Moreover, start weaning yourself off the benzos. [R]

Mechanism of Action

How Does Melatonin Work?

Melatonin works together with your body’s circadian rhythm. In simple terms, the circadian rhythm is your body’s internal clock. It lets you know when it’s time to sleep, wake and eat. Melatonin also helps regulate your body temperature, blood pressure and hormone levels. [R]

Melatonin levels start to rise in your body when it is dark outside, signaling to your body that it is time to sleep. [R]

It also binds to receptors in the body and can help you relax. For instance, melatonin binds to receptors in the brain to help reduce nerve activity. In the eyes, it can help reduce dopamine levels, a hormone that enables you to stay awake. [R] [R]

Melatonin is controlled by light and darkness. When we’re awake and the sun’s out, we don’t produce any melatonin. But at night, the onset of darkness signals to our pineal gland to release melatonin into the bloodstream. Your melatonin levels begin to increase about two hours before you go to bed, typically around 9 p.m., and peak about five hours later. As melatonin levels rise throughout our body — it’s found in a variety of our organs, including our eyes, bones, ovaries/testes and gut — our body knows it’s time to drift off to Slumber Town. [R]

“The melatonin receptors are named MT1 and MT2, and are G-protein coupled receptors (GPRCs) coupled to Gi proteins (a heterotrimer of α, β, and γ that dissociates into α and βγ when the receptor is activated). These two receptors are quite different from each other, as they structure pharmacological characteristics and chromosomal location, yet both have high affinity for melatonin. A third ‘receptor' exists, known as MT3, but it is not a GPRC like MT1/2. Due to the cytoplasmic protein quinone reductase II having the same melatonin binding properties as ‘MT3′, and deletion of quinone reductase II causing ‘MT3′ to disappear, MT3 may just be quinone reductase II.”

– Examine.com

Dosage

How To Take Melatonin?

You’ll see melatonin recommended in a range of doses, starting at around 0.5 milligrams up to 10 milligrams for people with sleep disorders, with the most common dosage being around 3 milligrams.

But even this is probably way more than you need.

You’re better off basing your melatonin intake on increments that mirror how much melatonin our bodies produce at night. According to clinical studies, the optimal dose is 0.3 milligrams. [R]

Melatonin Overdose

Even though the overwhelming verdict is that melatonin is safe, you can have too much of a good thing. Overdosing on melatonin has not been shown to be fatal, but it can produce the aforementioned side effects, like dizziness and grogginess. In one known case, after taking 24 milligrams of melatonin, a man became lethargic and disoriented, but returned to normal and did not continue to have issues once he lowered his dosage.

In addition, large doses could potentially cause amenorrhea (skipped periods) in women, due to it suppressing gonadotropin-releasing hormones, but if you can easily remedy this side effect by simply stopping your supplements. [R]

Side Effects

Melatonin Side Effects

Overall, the side effects of melatonin are pretty harmless. Unlike other sleep aids, like benzodiazepines and z-drugs (think: Ambien and Lunesta), it does not cause dependence or withdrawal symptoms. [R]

The most commonly reported side effect is daytime drowsiness. Other side effects include nausea, headache, and dizziness. [R]

If course, if you’re taking other medications, you should check with your physician before popping a melatonin. It has been known to interact with some antidepressants, blood pressure medications, sedatives, antibiotics, and antihistamines. [R]

Up to 240 mg and 500 mg oral and intravenous injections of melatonin taken acutely is not associated with any toxicological effects. [R]

A handful of large scale, 6-12 month studies, suggest continued administration of melatonin does not result in tolerance. – Examine.com

Conclusion

There's great amount of evidence suggesting as well as proving the benefits of supplementing with melatonin whether for sleep purposes or overall general health. Best practices when supplementing with melatonin for long-term benefits is to take a microdose of 300 mcg on daily basis before bedtime.

This microdose will serve a host of benefits most noteworthy of which is antioxidation and supporting mitochondria and antioxidation.

Many Nootropic focused companies are now aware of this and its benefits and so finally starting to see products in microdoses such as Nootropic Depot's, which I have personally been using for a long time. Prior to which, I tried a couple of different products at the doses of 3 mg and it made me very heavy and groggy for a long time.

User Experience

Reddit

reddit user documented his experience after 2 years of using microdose of melatonin as recommended alongside magnesium, and his realization of how beneficial it had been working for him after he stopped.

I took Magnesium Citrate (200-400mg) and Melatonin (0.3mg) both every night for over 2 years and thought they didn't make much difference in my sleep. It turned out to be very wrong – I now remember how poor my sleep was 3 years ago, before starting to take them. I wake up from the slightest noise and can't go back to sleep for many hours afterwards – even if I wake up after only 4 hours, I would need to wait 3 hours before I fall asleep again, without Magnesium and Melatonin. This has been this way since I was a child. I find Melatonin is better for actually falling asleep initially, while Magnesium is better for maintaining quality sleep afterwards.

Second Reddit User Experience

I have learned the same lesson with melatonin in that less is more. I took 30 mg one evening and had very unsettling and vivid dreams. Not restful at all. I find 5 mg timed release works well. If you are interested in another natural sleep / relaxation aid, I have had success with Red Bali Kratom.

Further Readings

From the blog: Melatonin for Sleep: How Effective Is It?

Wouldn’t it be great if you could pop a pill for better sleep? A pill that’s non-habit-forming, doesn’t require a prescription, and doesn’t make you do strange things like eat in your sleep? Well, maybe you can. While more satisfying zzz’s in pill form sounds too good to be true, there’s promising evidence that melatonin, the naturally occurring hormone in our bodies, can be harnessed as a supplement for better sleep.

L-Theanine & Caffeine combination is one of the safer and most popular nootropic stacks out there. Most of the time, it is what people start with when experimenting with nootropics due to its simple understanding, profound effect, and vast availability of data.

TLDR

The typical combination ratio is 100mg caffeine to 200mg L-theanine.

Caffeine

A central nervous system stimulant. It is also the world's most widely consumed drug. Humanity is a mass of junkies, but that's off-topic. On the other hand;

L-Theanine

An amino acid found in certain plant species, and mostly known for being one of the compounds of green tea. You can read more about L-theanine as a nootropic here.

Stack

Taking more than one nootropic at a time (2 or more) because they synergize well together, increasing and complementing one another's effects.

Synergy

The creation of something that is greater than the simple sum of its parts – (nice definition, I had to throw it in there).

Caffeine

When we hear of caffeine, the first thoughts that pop in our heads (and to many, the only) are something along the lines of stimulants, energy, wakefulness. Most people tend to overlook the actual benefits of caffeine. Not necessarily the 6 pumps vanilla sugar-filled chocolate drizzle frappuccino. What I refer to here is caffeine in its pure form, the chemical, central nervous system stimulant.

Some examples of the less known health benefits of caffeine:

  1. Caffeine boosts memory and especially memory consolidation, as shown in a Japanese study at Johns Hopkins University.
  2. Caffeine stimulates hair growth (in blading men and women). [1]

It also reduces mouth and throat cancer risk by 50%, reduces the risk of stroke by as much as 22%, and even decreases the risk of type diabetes. The list goes on and on but we are more focusing on the nootropic, cognition-related benefits. Some of which are the following:

  1.  Boosts overall memory, as well as formation and especially memory consolidation. [2]
  2. It fights erectile dysfunction and increases semen volume [3] [4]
  3. Improves reaction time and logical reasoning, especially in sleep-deprived individuals. [5]
  4. Boosts energy as well as athletic performance, and weight training. [6]

That, of course, doesn't mean it doesn't have a negative side to it though.

L-Theanine

L-theanine, on the other hand, is much less known comparing to caffeine. But it is very well known to those within the nootropic community.

Although it is existing in green tea, the concentration is too low to produce notable nootropic effects. Therefore, nootropically speaking, a higher concentration of l-theanine is required than that found in green tea for example. Which is what led to the production and widespread l-theanine supplement in capsule form.

L-theanine benefits include promoting relaxation and contributing to better sleep quality. Moreover:

  1. It boosts GABA, serotonin and dopamine levels in the brain, as well as lowers excitatory chemicals. Thereby, L-theanine reduces stress and anxiety.
  2. Enhances attention, focus, and learning ability.
  3. Improves sleep quality

The Synergy Effect

Now, speaking logically, what do you think would happen if you take both caffeine and theanine together, at the same time (caffeine l-theanine stack)?

It would give you the best of both worlds:

The stimulation, alertness, and wakefulness, without the associating crash, jitters, or anxiety that often come along with or after caffeine consumption.

Due to L-theanine calming and relaxing effects, this combination is one of the most popular nootropic stacks. It is simple, and both cimound have a vast amount of studies on them. So not a lot of digging is required to pull information on them.

Combining the two together results in this, or a very similar experience. Might even be better (or worse if you're the unlucky one):

“You can concentrate on your work more thoroughly, be more creative, and achieve more success with the absence of headaches, crashes, and anxiety. The combination gives you the power to perform better than taking either alone.” [7]

Dosage

Although newer formulations have been surfacing around, the widely known caffeine & l-theanine dosage is a 1:2 ratio. In most cases, that being:

  • 100mg Caffeine
  • 200mg L-Theanine

User Experience

My Personal Experience

I don't respond very well to coffee. I love it but its the unforbidden love to me because too much caffeine intake increases my hyperactivity. But when it comes to caffeine/theanine combo, it seems to take care of that and lead me to a hyper-focus state. Especially given that I'm ADHD, I can get very engaged into something and lose track and sense and even existence of time all together.

However, although I have caffeine/theanine from ND, I don't really find myself using it frequently. And that is mainly due to the fact that I drink a cup of bulletproof coffee first thing after waking up. Even though the caffeine concentration is lower in my morning coffee than the common 100mg, I drink my cup followed by a 200mg L-theanine. I found that this works the best for me, allowing me to reap the benefits of both, the synergy of the two compounds, as well as enjoy my bulletproof coffee and practice intermittent fasting (in my personal dictionary, this could also mean starvation and weight loss, but let's stay on topic here).

Where to Buy?

If you are in Dubai, you can purchase Caffeine + L-Theanine Capsules as well as L-Theanine 200mg Capsules from Nootropix.

Further Readings

If you would like to read more into the combination and synergy of the two compounds, you may enjoy the following studies and articles:

  1. The effects of l-theanine, caffeine and their combination on cognition and mood‘ by the Psychology Division of Northumbria University
  2. L-Theanine and caffeine improve target-specific attention to visual stimuli by decreasing mind wandering: a human functional magnetic resonance imaging study‘ by the Department of Nutritional Sciences, Texas Tech University
  3. Effects of l-theanine on attention and reaction time response‘ by University of Shiga Prefecture, Human Culture Department, Japan
  4. Choline: All About The Essential Vitamin-Like Compound
  5. Phenibut: An In-Depth Review of a Powerful Nootropic Agent
  6. Ultimate Nootropics FAQ List

Top ↑

L-Theanine is a calming, non-sedative amino acid that is synergistic with stimulants such as caffeine since it ‘takes the edge off.'

Overview

What is L-Theanine?

L-theanine is a natural amino acid, often called the “natural xanax”. It almost only exists in green tea leaves. It works brilliantly in unwinding and relaxing the body and brain without causing drowsiness, while reducing stress and increasing cognitive function. Due to not causing drowsiness, it is the perfect choice to combine with stimulants of any sort to take the edge off.

L-theanine is a relaxing, non-sedating amino acid that is synergistic with stimulants to ‘take the edge off.' Especially with coffee, it synergizes so well resulting in clean energy, furthermore preventing the nasty caffeine crash that many people experience after caffeine intake. It is also useful on its own, promoting relaxation and minimizing stress without causing drowsiness. A combination of L-theanine with caffeine at a 2:1 ratio is increasing in popularity as a remarkably synergetic combination that boosts cognition and attention.

It is an amino acid that naturally exists in green tea leaves as its main active ingredient, and that is the only source that provides it. It is famous for its fantastic nootropic features such as improving memory, expanding learning capacity, as well as providing a calming, zen-like effect.

L-Theanine, for the most part, is a relaxing but not sedating amino acid that is synergistic with stimulants such as caffeine as it can ‘take the edge off'. It is effective by itself in the standard supplemental dosages as well, and although it can be attained via a diet high in green tea ingestion that is the only dietary source of L-Theanine. – Examine.com

L-Theanine has also been in the list of 6 best natural nootropics as second to caffeine.

Benefits and Effects

What Are L-Theanine Benefits?

  1. Reduces Anxiety and Stress
  2. Improves Memory, Attention, and Cognition
  3. Enhances Sleep Quality
  4. Promotes Longevity and
  5. Increases Lifespan
  6. Reduces Symptoms of Depression
  7. Promotes Relaxation without causing Drowsiness
  8. Significantly Reduces Symptoms of Schizophrenia
  9. Enhances Blood Flow and Stimulates Nitric Oxide Production
  10. Reduces Negative Effects of Caffeine
  11. Improves Cognitive Boosting Effects

Supporting research:

Reduces Anxiety and Stress

A review by researchers of a small set of trials concluded that there are benefits of L-theanine in reducing acute stress and anxiety in people with stressful conditions. [R]

Oral intake of L-theanine in rats at feasible dosages reduces circulating biomarkers of stress with or without an actual stressor being present. Therefore, it reduces the adverse effects of stress such as memory impairment. Reductions of perceived stress reported in human subjects given oral theanine at the standard dosages. [R] [R] [R]

Improves Memory, Attention, and Cognition

In a 16-week long study on individuals with mild cognitive impairment, supplementing with l-theanine shows an improved delayed recognition as well as immediate recall comparing to those receiving a placebo during a mental exercise. Furthermore, attention span and alertness levels increased during the memory test. [R]

Enhances Sleep Quality

Promotes Longevity and Increases Lifespan

Theanine enhances sleep quality. In a study measuring sleep time with individuals supplementing with L-theanine, sleep time increases by 11 and up to 21%, therefore making it a valuable compound for achieving better nighttime sleep. [R]

In a study using the model organism C. elegans, L-theanine shows to promote longevity and promote healthy and increased lifespan. Due to those findings, the study suggests that the compound might have similar effects on mammals and humans. [R]

Reduces Symptoms of Depression

L-Theanine intake for a period of eight weeks during an open-label study helped easing depressive symptoms, anxiety, sleep disturbance, as well as cognitive impairments in subject suffering major depressive disorder. [R]

Promotes Relaxation without causing Drowsiness

Theanine is proving to be a great agent in promoting relaxation without the accompanying effect of drowsiness. The company developing ‘suntheanine', l-theanine supplement, won the 1998’s Food Ingredient Research Award for the outstanding research and findings. [R]

Significantly Reduces Symptoms of Schizophrenia

In persons diagnosed schizophrenia receiving 400mg L-theanine in addition to antipsychotic medication for eight weeks were able to reduce anxiety as well as psychopathology symptoms significantly. [R]

Enhances Blood Flow and Stimulates Nitric Oxide Production

Theanine appears to promote nitric oxide formation at relatively low concentrations and is likely practically relevant following oral ingestion. [R]

Reduces Negative Effects of Caffeine & Improves Cognitive Boosting Effects

Theanine and caffeine are typically found together in tea. A combination of caffeine and theanine together significantly improves alertness, reduce fatigue, and improves task-switching accuracy.

High dose caffeine (250 mg, equivalent to 2.5 cups of coffee) has some negative effects, such as jitters and increased blood pressure. Theanine was able to mitigate the increase in blood pressure.

“L-Theanine decreases the negative and jittery effects of caffeine in rats.

However, human studies found that L-Theanine helps reduce caffeine jitters, although the changes were not significant.

L-Theanine changes the pharmacological profile of caffeine in humans, as the combination of caffeine and L-Theanine have somewhat different cognitive enhancement effects. ” – Selfhacked

Additional Benefits

Large studies in humans have not been undertaken; however, several smaller-scale studies (fewer than 100 participants) have shown increased alpha wave generation and lowered anxiety, along with benefits to sleep quality in people with ADHD. [R]

Mechanism of Action

How Does L-Theanine Work?

L-theanine has a comparable chemical composition to glutamate, an amino acid that assists in the transmission of nerve impulses in the brain. Thereby, providing a host of benefits for the mind. It has a remarkable ability of crossing the blood-brain barrier, which means that it reaches the brain directly. Furthermore, it has positive effects on stress levels proving to increase both dopamine and serotonin levels in brain; which are two of the brain’s feel-good chemicals. Green tea is known to be effective at helping people relax due to the positive impact on those neurotransmitters.

Theanine is an antagonist of the NMDA receptors (albeit with fairly weak efficacy) and can inhibit synaptic release of glutamate via blocking the transporter competitively. Theanine may also reduce glutamate levels, but this is also a fairly weak mechanism requiring a high concentration of theanine – Examine

Dosage

How to Take L-Theanine?

The effective l-theanine dose is 200mg. For optimal nootropic results, take l-theanine with caffeine (coffee or supplement, whatever suits you) at a 2:1 ratio. As a stack, it would be:

  • L-Theanine 200mg
  • Caffeine 100mg

For those interested, you can actually purchase a supplement pre-made that has 200 mg Theanine & 100 mg Caffeine pressed into one capsule. I've personally used and still use Nootropic Depot's.

Note: if you have anxiety or hypertension, you may want to skip caffeine entirely as it aggravates the symptoms.

Experimenting is the best way to find out how you react to it.

Side Effects

What Are L-Theanine Side Effects?

L-theanine is very safe as very high doses have failed to cause toxicity. However, that doesn't mean you should go for such high dosage. (R]

L-theanine is exceptionally reliable. Furthermore, it is classified Generally Recognized as Safe by the Fraud and Deception FDA in the US.

Conclusion

L-Theanine is a natural safe amino acid offering many benefits. It's a popular choice for individuals wanting a simple and effective way to boost their mental performance. Alone, with caffeine, or even with an advanced nootropic stack; L-theanine is worth trying.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is L-Theanine and how does it work?

L-theanine is one of the main psychoactive constituents of green tea (camellia sinensis) generally used as a dietary supplement to promote relaxation, lift mood, and reduce anxiety without sedation.

Beyond that, it’s been shown to generate creativity and higher learning via the ability to ignore distracting information during complex tasks. Now the science: L-theanine induces a calm state of mind by promoting alpha waves in the brain, and has been shown to increase dopamine, GABA, and glycine levels in various areas of the brain, as well as modulate BDNF (Brain derived neurotrophic factor) and NGF (Nerve Growth Factor) levels. In fact, in one recent animal study l-theanine consumption was associated with about a 25% increase in BDNF and about a 100% increase in NGF in the hippocampus. L-Theanine has structural similarities to glutamine and both neurotransmitters that are produced from it (GABA and glutamate) help balance and maintain stress levels while maintaining a state of wakeful relaxation. Lately, L-theanine has been growing in popularity due to its synergistic effects with caffeine to help boost focus. Systematic reviews show that L-theanine significantly mitigates the anxiety inducing side-effects of caffeine to create a balanced focus.

Should I take L-Theanine every time I drink coffee? Are there any adverse effects from long-term L-Theanine usage?

Yes, and no. Let me explain. L-Theanine is a phenomenal compound when mixed with coffee, due to the stacking of effect, as well as the reduction in some of the negative effects of caffeine itself. For example, in my biohacking course The Alchemist’s Guide To Biohacking, I talk about how I stack coffee blended with grass-fed butter, coconut oil, MCT, L-Theanine, macadamia or almond butter, and sometimes raw honey almost every single morning. It’s a part of my daily routine, and probably my most favourite (and definitely tastiest) part of it, if I have to choose one. However, like all compounds I take on a regular basis, I try to observe a 6/1 or 6/2 cycle with them, meaning six weeks on, then one or two weeks off, depending on the compound. This is to reduce dependency, as well as ensure my body isn’t getting used to the effects, resulting in me possibly having to take more. I’m currently in an off phase now with pine pollen, one of my go-to herbal supplements to boost my testosterone levels. With L-Theanine, I tend to take a week off at the same time I give myself a week off from coffee/caffeine, as it helps to do both at the same time for me.

Has anyone used L-Theanine as a meditation aid?

When you take L-theanine your thinking will seemingly slow down considerably, but you are not fully conscious when L-Theanine is in your bloodstream. It shuts off certain areas of the brain and limits the bandwidth of brain waves to predominantly alpha waves (1). Full meditative consciousness requires great brain wave bandwidth from delta – to high gamma waves and full activity of the neurotransmitter systems. It is best to meditate completely sober, then your brain will adapt properly to fully receive consciousness. Theanine is beneficial though, after it has metabolized by the body. It acts like an adaptogen and increases strength of brain. Your alertness increases 24 h after consumption and meditation is easier for 48 h. This is because brain have adapted to the presence of L-theanine, and once it has been metabolized, the brain neurons will fire with greater intensity, until brain is again adapted to absence of L-Theanine. L-theanine, a natural constituent in tea, and its effect on mental state.

Where can I buy L-Theanine in Dubai?

You can buy L-Theanine 200mg Capsules as well as many other Nootropics in Dubai from the shop page.

Further Readings

  1. L-Theanine & Caffeine Stack: Making the Best of Both Worlds
  2. Acetyl-L-Carnitine aka ALCAR
  3. N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine aka NALT
  4. The Ultimate Nootropics FAQ List

Citicoline (also known as CDP-choline) is a safe, potent, and extremely well-tolerated nootropic. It enhances memory and protects the brain serving as a neuroprotectant. In combination with other supplements, it works as a powerful potentiator, especially racetams.

Overview

What is Citicoline?

CDP Choline (also known as Citicoline or Cytidine diphosphocholine) is a potent nootropic and a highly bioavailable choline source that is praised for its ability to cross the blood-brain barrier quickly, improving memory and protecting the brain against memory injury. Furthermore; it heightens focus, increases mental energy, and provides thought clarity. Recent studies suggest its usefulness in the treatment of many medical problems from head injuries to stroke, and neurodegenerative diseases to glaucoma, ADHD, and even cocaine dependency.

Citicoline, also known as cytidine diphosphate-choline or cytidine 5′-diphosphocholine is an intermediate in the generation of phosphatidylcholine from choline, a common biochemical process in cell membranes. Citicoline is naturally occurring in the cells of human and animal tissue, in particular the organs. – Wikipedia

For nootropists – (new term just coined here!), the most exciting part of supplementing with a choline source is its ability to amplify and enhance the effects of other nootropics. It works synergistically with racetams nootropics such as AniracetamSunifiramFasoracetam, potentiating the effects of memory boosting such as piracetam and pramiracetam while preventing the minor headaches that often come along with frequent racetam use. CDP Choline, along with Alpha-GPC (and Centrophenoxine) are the most useful choline-source supplements available.

Benefits and Effects

What Are Citicoline Benefits?

  1. Memory Improvement
  2. Increases Mental Stamina and Neuroprotection
  3. Focus and Concentration
  4. Potentiator of other Nootropics (especially racetams)

Supporting research:

Memory Improvement

CDP Choline is popular for its effect on improving memory and preventing memory loss. It associates with anti-aging and longevity, as well as having the possibility of being an add-on to the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease. [1]

Increases Mental Stamina and Neuroprotection

Clinical trials show CDP-Choline to affect mental energy positively, increasing frontal lobe bioenergetics and mitigating the cognitive declines associated with aging. Thereby becoming a neuroprotective agent. [2]

Focus and Concentration

CDP-choline increases the ability to concentrate for extended periods of time and minimizes distraction, which makes it essential for studying, learning new information, or completing enduring and mentally demanding tasks. This seems to be true even in severe cases of conditions like brain injuries and Alzheimer’s disease. [3]

To benefit from the focus, concentration, and enduring prologing tasks, you could pair it with an amino acid nootropic like N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine. The synergy of the two will improve the ability to concentrate to a new level.

This is especially true in subjects with ADHD (like myself). I've found including NALT and Citicoline together in my moring stack to be one of the most beneficial for pulling through in my corporate office job.

Potentiator of other Nootropics (especially racetams)

Many Nootropists consider CDP-choline a must-have in any stack. Especially those including racetams. It works particularly well with racetams, amplifying their effects and preventing the associating headache due to the utilization of acetylcholine within the brain. Furthermore, it seems to delay the onset of cognitive decline in Alzheimer’s disease when used in combination with piracetam according to a study by the Biomedical Research Center in Spain. [4]

Mechanism of Action

How Does Citicoline Work?

Citicoline is a “slightly” stimulating nootropic – depending on whom you ask. Many people myself included find it to be more than “slightly” stimulating. However, I take it along with a couple other supplements so my experience shouldn't be as credible. Citicoline restores and repairs neuronal damage, increases dopamine levels in the nervous system, and enhances the production of neurotransmitter acetylcholine. Acetylcholine is especially important for those using racetam nootropics.

Post consumption, CDP-choline breaks down into choline, and cytidine. After which it flows throughout the body and  easily crosses the blood-brain barrier. The cytidine then converts into uridine, a nucleotide base essential to neural membrane synthesis. The choline release is cholinergic, increasing levels of choline within the brain.

Choline is a precursor to acetylcholine,  vital to most cognitive functions — particularly those relating to memory and learning capacity. Racetams are acetylcholine agonists compounds that increase the production and release of acetylcholine. Sufficient choline availability creates notable cognitive improvements in memory, heighten focus, thought clarity, and recall speed. Additionally, it prevents racetam headaches.

Dosage

How To Take Citicoline?

How to take: the typical dose is usually ranging from 250mg being the lowest effective, to up to 1000 mg while keeping an  8 to 12-hour time intervals. I find 250mg effective enough to potentiate racetam effects. I've also taken 500mg at other times but that was in a preformulated nootropic, which is  MindLab Pro.

According to Examine.com, the standard dosing of CDP-choline is to take 500-2,000 mg in two divided doses (of 250-1,000 mg) usually separated by 8-12 hours, although a single daily dose is also sometimes used. A single dose of 4,000 mg does not appear to affect the blood any differently than 2,000 mg, and so it is not necessary to take such a high dose.

Side Effects

What Are Citicoline Side Effects?

Rare occurrences are:

  1. Indigestion
  2. Headache
  3. Insomnia – this is applicable if taken late in the evening
  4. Diarrhea

These are the reported possible (although rare) side effects. I have been using both Citicoline and Alpha-GPC for over a year or two now and never experienced any of those.

Top ↑

User Experience

Reddit

This question was asked on Reddit's Nootropic geeks about users experiences on Citicoline, which had 19 answers. I will share a few from both positive and negative to not seem biased. The question asked was:

“Has anyone had a boost in long term memory using cdp choline?”

and 3 out of the 19 answers:

  • I have but I take 1 gram daily. There's tons of studies on it and older adults on helping memory so it does work.
  • I can’t say whether it was the choline or not since I use it with noopept but I will say both have helped with long term memory.
  • The real answer is no, CDP Choline is not profound enough to warrant noticeable increases in memory. Slightly, perhaps. Significant? No chance.

Due to reddit's infamous answers end up leading to random off topic discussions, I had to add my answer as the 4th to have a total of 4 user experiences here.

Personal Experience

yes yes & a 100 yes. i've been using both alpha gpc and citicoline for about 2 years and seen tremendous positive impact both onset and long-term. So there you have it all. Now its on you to do the rest of the research, if necessary, and decide for yourself. Good luck and let me know how you respond to it! 

Conclusion

CDP-choline is an excellent memory enhancing, focus amplifying nootropic that can (and should) be added to almost any stack.Using it on its own is effective enough for that mild stimulation and to fire your focus. Then pair it with a racetam, and the effects of both are amplified to an amazing extent.

Furthermore, it provides neuroprotection. That is something anyone living today can benefit from due to many reasons such as environmental changes and the accumulation of oxidative stress in today's world.It is very well tolerated and safe — there are no reports of serious adverse effects on CDP-choline, and enlighten me if I'm wrong.

Moreover, it is an approved medical treatment in Europe for a number of conditions such as cognitive impairment (R) as well as Ischemic Stroke (R), to mention a few.

It is affordable and easily accessible. You can get it for around $15 for a 60 capsules of 300mg, and that is the first result I looked at for the sake of elaborating. I tend to use Alpha-GPC more often which is slightly more expensive, but no more than $10 more than citicoline.It's worth buying for anyone looking after cognition boost and overall brain health. But especially worth it for those using multiple nootropics at a time, including racetams. I mean at this point, I would not even bother taking any racetam if I don't have a choline source to pair it with.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Does Citicoline Do?

Citicoline is a “slightly” stimulating nootropic – depending on whom you ask. Many people myself included find it to be more than “slightly” stimulating. However, I take it along with a couple other supplements so my experience shouldn’t be as credible. Citicoline restores and repairs neuronal damage, increases dopamine levels in the nervous system, and enhances the production of neurotransmitter acetylcholine. Acetylcholine is especially important for those using racetam nootropics.

What is Citicoline made from?

Citicoline is an intermediate in the generation of phosphatidylcholine from choline, a common biochemical process in cell membranes. Citicoline is naturally occurring in the cells of human and animal tissue, in particular the organs.

What are the effects of taking citicoline?

Citicoline Improves Memory, Increases Mental Stamina, is Neuroprotective, Heightens Focus and Concentration, as well as Amplifies the effects of other nootropics, especially Racetams

Is Citicoline same as Choline?

No. Citicoline is cholinergic (compounds that increase the levels of acetylcholine or choline in the brain). While Choline is actually a molecule mostly used for turning into acetylcholine, the learning neurotransmitter, as well as live health agent reducing fatty liver buildup.

How Much Alpha-GPC to Take with Piracetam?

Ideally when pairing Alpha-GPC and Piracetam stack, the dose would be:

Piracetam: 1,600mg
Citicoline: 250mg

Is Citicoline Natural?

Yes, Citicoline is a natural compound.

Further Readings

  1. Choline: The Essential Vitamin Nutrient
  2. NACCoQ10Agmatine SulfateMelatonin
  3. Nootropics Information Ultimate FAQ Page