IntroductionBenefits & EffectsMechanism of ActionDosageSide EffectsUser Experiences

Summary: 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.

Melatonin Video TTS


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 & Effects

What Are The Melatonin Benefits?

  1. Regulates Circadian Rhythm and Enhances Sleep Quality
  2. Alleviates Anxiety and Depression Symptoms
  3. A Potent Antioxidant
  4. Supports BDNF
  5. Strengthens the Blood-Brain Barrier
  6. Neuroprotective
  7. 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]

Melatonin is a 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]

Melatonin 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]

Melatonin is Neuroprotectant

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]

Melatonin Replaces Benzos for Sleep

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.” –


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

What Are 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. –


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

First Reddit User Experience

A 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. /SuperAgonist

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. /beesler70

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.

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L-Theanine & Caffeine: Making the Best of Both Worlds

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

  1. 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;
  2. 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.
  3. Stack: taking more than one nootropic at a time (2 or more) because they synergize well together, increasing and complementing one another’s effects.
  4. Synergy: the creation of something that is greater than the simple sum of its parts – (nice definition, I had to throw it in there).


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, 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]


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.

Vendors such as Nootropic Depot have already come up with an “enhanced” formula for caffeine/theanine with a ratio of 1.5:2, and the addition of extended release technology that sums up to optimal use of both compounds.

I still have it on my to-do list to try the sample I got with my last order…soon……..

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).

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

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Summary: 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.

IntroductionIngredientsBenefits & EffectsSide EffectsPersonal ExperienceOther Natural Nootropics


What Is MindLab Pro?

mindlab pro nootropic formula

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”

The Formula

What’s In MindLab Pro?

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 & 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 The Side Effects of MindLab Pro?

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.

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.

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IntroductionBenefits & EffectsMechanism of ActionDosageSide EffectsUser ExperiencesFAQs

Summary: Alpha-GPC is a natural choline compound. It works on its own as a powerful memory booster. In combination with other nootropics, it works as a potentiator boosting cognitive capabilities. It’s also used as a milt stimulant to boost energy and power output when exercising. Furthermore, it promotes cell regeneration and acts as a neuroprotective agent, against cognitive decline.

Alpha-GPC TTS Video on Youtube


What is Alpha-GPC?

Alpha-GPC is a cholinergic compound naturally present in the body in small amounts and commercially manufactured as an extract of purified soy lecithin. [1]

Although there are dietary resources of Alpha-GPC such as dairy products, organ meats, and wheat germ, concentrations achieved by dietary intake are lower than those obtainable by a supplement. It works rapidly and reliably by delivering necessary choline to the brain. [2]

It provides valuable nootropic qualities, including memory enhancement and protection against brain aging, attributing to longevity. Clinical trials covering thousands of participants confirm Alpha-GPC is a remarkable remedy for memory loss that accompanies Alzheimer’s disease [3], vascular dementia [4], and stroke. [5]

Moreover, it provides neuroprotective, anti-aging benefits. Studies further suggest it is useful in the treatment of generalized anxiety. [6] [7]

Another benefit is its ability to enhance cells membrane health and promote rapid recovery following physical activity. Studies indicate that it also acts as a dopaminergic, encouraging the release of dopamine, meaning it works as a potential treatment for neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s, in addition to being an overall mood enhancer. [8] [9]

Potent Potentiator

However, many consider the real strengths of Alpha-GPC is the potentiating feature when in combination with other nootropics. The choline that it provides the brain with significantly magnify the cognitive enhancing effects of other nootropics, especially the racetams.

I’ve always liked both Alpha-GPC and Citicoline and appreciated their profound effect, until one day I added Aniracetam 750mg and it was as if I had just took a racetam for the first time. The effects of both nootropics synergize together so well, a year later both of them are on the front line among my nootropic stack.

Alpha-GPC vs Other Choline Sources

According to examine and based on a handful of different studies, Alpha-GPC appears to be the best currently known cholinergic in increasing plasma and brain choline levels, as it has better transportation into the brain than does choline (somewhat similar to CDP-choline) but since it is a greater percentage choline by weight (relative to CDP-choline) taking X dose of either drug gives more choline when using Alpha-GPC

Benefits & Effects

What Are Alpha-GPC Benefits?

  1. Improves Memory Formation and Recall
  2. Neuroprotection and Development of New Brain Cells
  3. Increases Energy and Speeds up Recovery
  4. Increases Attention and Enhances Mood

Supporting Research:

Improves Memory Formation and Recall

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 it an effective treatment for memory impairment caused by age-related diseases, including Alzheimer’s and several forms of dementia. It has further proven to be capable of recovering memory in volunteers following brief chemically-induced amnesia. [10, 11, 12]

Neuroprotection and Development of New Brain Cells

It protects and maintains overall brain health by promoting the development of new brain cells and enhancing the body’s capability to repair damaged cell membranes. This attribute is a significant longevity advantage. [13]

Increases Energy 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%. [14, 15, 16]

Increases Attention and Enhances Mood

Users report that using Alpha-GPC provides distinguished mental clarity while improving mood. This elevating effect is explained partially by the additional choline it presents, which increases attentiveness and promotes effortless clear-thinking. It’s also a link to its production of human growth hormone, which provides energizing, longevity effects. [17]

In combination with other nootropics, it offers adequate choline to achieve optimal cognitive enhancement effects, and it prevents the minor headaches often associating with racetams.

Mechanism of Action

How Does Alpha-GPC Work?

Alpha GPC benefits
Alpha-GPC structure

Alpha-GPC is comprising of choline, glycerol, and phosphate and its classification is cholinergic. The mechanism of its action is examined with high understanding. However, the manner in which it affects some neuronal functions remains unclear. A water-soluble supplement that is fast-acting and highly bioavailable orally. It crosses the blood-brain barrier shortly after ingestion, and effects work within an hour. It metabolizes into a combination of choline and byproduct glycerophosphate. Additional choline forming by Alpha-GPC is the essence of its nootropic abilities.

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. [Ref 1, 2, 3, 4]

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. [22, 23, 24]


What is The Recommended Alpha-GPC Dosage?

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. [25]

Personally I find 300mg is effective enough especially because I almost always take it as part of a stack. If not Aniracetam then its Piracetam, Phenylpiracetam 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 Alpha-GPC Side Effects?

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, and never more than 600mg in a 24-hours frame.

Note: Alpha-GPC interacts adversely with scopolamine. Those using scopolamine are advised to avoid it.

User Experiences

Here is 3 random alpha-gpc reddit community thoughts and experiences:

First reddit user experience:

This might be considered a bit on the excessive side, but I’ve been taking 300mg of GPC daily for ~2.5 years. I’ve found it to be one of the most effective ways to treat the severe anxiety that I’ve suffered throughout most of my life. Initially, I periodically experienced the insomnia you mentioned, but that passed within a month or so. Every once in a while, I’ll go several days without taking the stuff. During those short, sporadic periods of “cycling off”, I’ve noticed that I feel significantly more “dull” and lethargic than I otherwise do, but that might just be placebo in action. I understand that such a lengthy use of an under-researched substance might be a bit careless. I suppose the greatest concern would likely be down regulation of choline receptors and reduced choline production, but I doubt that any studies of the effects of long-term heavy choline supplementation currently exist to prove that one way or another. [find thread here]

Second user experience:

As the title says, Alpha GPC has next to eradicated my social anxiety. It’s incredible. Only downside is I’m having a hard time sleeping at night. Guess my question is, how long can I cycle this stuff safely. [find thread here]

Third user experience:

So I used to take Alpha GPC, as well as a ton of other nootropics for a few months but recently took a couple months off. Anyway, I’ve been trying to get back into them so I took only Alpha GPC this morning. I already feel more at ease with everything. I font have much depression but its crazy how great I feel already. I happened to just see this and put it all together. [find thread here]


Alpha-GPC is a compound with decades of research, and its worldwide appreciation comes from the effects of memory enhancement. In addition to the dominant nootropic qualities, it’s also an excellent companion to racetams. Moreover, it stimulates the production of human growth hormone. This hormone production improves strength, reduces recovery time, and support the development of lean muscle mass. Therefore; it is an excellent nootropic for individuals who enjoy leading an active lifestyle.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Alpha-GPC Safe?

Personally never experienced any side effects from its use. But I’ve never taken more than 300mg in one dose, and never more than 600mg in a 24-hours frame. Additionally, according to a study by Food Chem Toxicol in 2011 said Alpha-GPC does not appear to possess mutagenic activity, as well that No Observed Adverse Effect Level (NOAEL) for humans was at least 150 mg/kg over 26 weeks based on extrapolation from dogs.

Is Alpha-GPC the Same as Choline?

Alpha-GPC 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.

Is Alpha-GPC Water Soluble?

Alpha-GPC is very water-soluble. It’s much more likely to be soluble in water than non-polar solvents such as fat. The reasons why I would say that are as follows: the molecule itself has two ionic sites, ionic organic compounds generally have at least some solubility in water. Two ionic sites significantly increases the likelihood of it being soluble in water. Furthermore, the molecule has many OH a Oxygen moieties. Molecules with a lot of oxygen containing moieties are also likely to be water soluble, due to the hydrogen bonding of water. A good example of this are monosaccharides, they are not ionic, yet dissolve readily in water because of the numerous oxygen containing functional groups on the molecule. Decent answer from a chemist reddit user: everyone_wins

Does Alpha-GPC Work?

Yes. Alpha-GPC is comprising of choline, glycerol, and phosphate and its classification is cholinergic. The mechanism of its action is examined with high understanding. However, the manner in which it affects some neuronal functions remains unclear. A water-soluble supplement that is fast-acting and highly bioavailable orally. It crosses the blood-brain barrier shortly after ingestion, and effects work within an hour. It metabolizes into a combination of choline and byproduct glycerophosphate. Additional choline forming by Alpha-GPC is the essence of its nootropic abilities.

Does Alpha-GPC Keep You Awake?

Although traditionally known as being non-stimulating, some persons do report cognitive stimulation with supplemental alpha-GPC.

Can Alpha-GPC Increase Dopamine?

Yes, some research studies suggests that oral ingestion of Alpha-GPC can be dopaminergic, by both increasing dopamine release during neuronal action potentials and possibly by stimulating the expression of receptors

How Much Alpha-GPC To Take?

A standard dosage of alpha-GPC is 300-600 mg, according to the most common label doses. 300mg for general use, and 600 mg for increasing power output. This dose is in accordance with the study using alpha-GPC to enhance power output (600 mg) and the two studies noting an increase in growth hormone secretion, and is likely a good dose to take for athletes.

How Does Alpha-GPC Work?

Alpha-GPC is comprising of choline, glycerol, and phosphate and its classification is cholinergic. The mechanism of its action is examined with high understanding. However, the manner in which it affects some neuronal functions remains unclear. A water-soluble supplement that is fast-acting and highly bioavailable orally. It crosses the blood-brain barrier shortly after ingestion, and effects work within an hour. It metabolizes into a combination of choline and byproduct glycerophosphate. Additional choline forming by Alpha-GPC is the essence of its nootropic abilities.

How Much Alpha-GPC to Take with Piracetam?

Ideally when pairing Alpha-GPC and Piracetam stack, the dose would be: Piracetam: 1,600 mg
and Alpha-GPC: 300 mg.

How Much Alpha-GPC to take with Aniracetam?

Same as with Piracetam, when taking an Aniracetam and Alpha-GPC stack, the ideal dosage would be: 750 mg of Aniracetam and 300 mg of Alpha-GPC.

How Much Alpha-GPC to Take with Noopept?

Ideally when pairing Alpha-GPC and Noopept stack, the dosage would be 30mg of Noopept (or 15mg if you prefer 2 doses per day instead than one), and 300mg of Alpha-GPC.

When to Take Alpha-GPC?

Alpha-GPC can be taken any time, although preferably not late in the evening due to some reports that it stimulates some people. Other than that, you can take it any time with or without food because its water-soluble.

Where to Buy Alpha-GPC?

Alpha-GPC can be bought on many places. You local drugstore, pharmacies, department store where they have supplements. Its also available with many different vendors online and on Amazon.

Which is the Best Alpha-GPC brand?

Personally, I only used Nootropic Depot’s Alpha-GPC which I highly recommend. It can be found either on their website or on Amazon here.

Does Alpha-GPC Increase HGH?

Yes, Alpha-GPC increases growth hormone, but due to a rapid normalization of growth hormone concentrations within 2 hours it may not lead to practical benefits.

Is Alpha-GPC Natural?

Yes, Alpha-GPC is a natural compound.

Further and Related Readings

  1. Choline: The Essential Vitamin Nutrient
  2. N-Acetyl Cysteine (NAC)
  3. Agmatine Sulfate
  4. Citicoline (CDP)

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IntroductionBenefits & EffectsMechanism of ActionDosageSide EffectsFAQ

Summary: 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 dosage
L-theanine skeletal structure
L-theanine Video TTS


What is L-Theanine?

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.

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

Benefits & Effects

What Are L-Theanine Benefits?

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

Supporting Research:

L-Theanine Reduces Anxiety & 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]

L-Theanine 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]

L-Theanine Enhances Sleep Quality

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)

L-Theanine Promotes Longevity and Increases Lifespan

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)

L-Theanine 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)

L-Theanine 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)

L-Theanine 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)

L-Theanine 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)

L-Theanine 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 L-Theanine 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


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:

  1. L-Theanine 200mg
  2. 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.


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.

Further and Related 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

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IntroductionBenefits & EffectsMechanism of ActionDosageSide EffectsUser ExperiencesFAQs

Summary: Citicoline (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.

citicoline cdp choline


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 Aniracetam, Sunifiram, Fasoracetam, potentiating the effects of memory boosting such as piracetam and pramiracetam while preventing the minor headaches that often come along with racetam use.CDP Choline, along with Alpha-GPC (and Centrophenoxine) are the most useful choline-source supplements available.

Benefits & Effects

What Are Citicoline Benefits?

  1. Citicoline Improves Memory
  2. Increases Mental Stamina
  3. Neuroprotective
  4. Heightens Focus and Concentration
  5. Amplifies the effects 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.


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, 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.

User Experiences

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:

  1. 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. peptidehunter
  2. 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. cryogen
  3. The real answer is no, CDP Choline is not profound enough to warrant noticeable increases in memory. Slightly, perhaps. Significant? No chance. then00breaper

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! 


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. NAC, CoQ10, Agmatine Sulfate, Melatonin
  3. Nootropics Information Ultimate FAQ Page

Back to Nootropics Information homepage.

IntroductionBenefits and EffectsMechanism of ActionDosageStackSide EffectsUser Experience

Summary: 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.

Sulbutiamine Video TTS


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.

Sulbutiamine dose
Sulbutiamine Structure

Sulbutiamine is 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 & 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:

Sulbutiamine 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

Sulbutiamine 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]

Sulbutiamine 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.

Sulbutiamine for 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?

It’s 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. [R]


How To Take Sulbutiamine?

How to take: 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]


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

How To Take Sulbutiamine?

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]


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.

User Experience

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.


Related Nootropics

  1. Agmatine Sulfate
  2. Bacopa Monnieri
  3. Melatonin

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