Posts

A Review of Nootropics Use in Sports

nootropics athletics

Nootropics can help your athletic performance.

Most individuals take nootropic supplements to boost cognition, to improve their focus, to help them study for a test, and so on.  However, many athletes may be surprised to find that nootropics can help them to perform better physically.

It would make logical sense that a supplement that can improve focus and clarity would have a positive effect on the body’s response to physical activity. The better you can focus on the task at hand, the better you will perform. Certain nootropics even directly improve muscle contraction and growth.

Some nootropics like phenylpiracetam are so effective at improving athletic performance that they are banned from competitive sports; others are equally as effective and entirely fine to use for any sport. So how do nootropics work with your body to improve your athleticism?

How Nootropics Help Athletic Performance

nootropics soccer

Nootropics can help boost cognition, which can help you think on your feet.

Taking nootropics affects the brain’s levels of neurotransmitters, which helps the brain to connect with muscle tissue and send out signals.  Raising neurotransmitter levels can help the brain to communicate more efficiently with the rest of the body, and can improve reaction times by promoting a higher level of cognition.

Specifically, most nootropics increase acetylcholine, the neurotransmitter commonly known to improve memory and learning. However, acetylcholine also improves muscle control as well as balance. Mental and physical fitness are linked, and so a quicker and healthier brain produces faster reflexes and greater endurance.  The effects of individual nootropics on physical activity vary, however, so you will need to choose wisely.

Benefits of Different Nootropics in Sports

 

nootropics hockey

Nootropics can also help build muscle (so that you win a fight or two in hockey).

Alpha GPC has been linked to increased levels of growth hormone as well as quicker fat oxidation, meaning that it promotes muscle gains and helps to burn fat leading to improved physical performance and body composition [1].  Aniracetam, in addition to being more potent than other racetam supplements like piracetam, can help to reduce anxiety as well as increase focus [2]. 

Oxiracetam increases spatial learning, which helps your brain to improve physical coordination. Huperzine A prevents the breakdown of acetylcholine to improve memory and muscle control; it also increase alertness.

All of these nootropics will improve neuronal communication between the brain and body, but also have specialized individual effects.  With all of these options to choose from, it is a simple matter of picking a nootropic and seeing which is best for your sports performance.

Which Nootropics Are Right For You?

You may be curious about trying nootropics to improve physical performance, and there are many excellent choices out there.  Be careful of taking supplements that may be banned from a particular sport, but otherwise experiment and find what works best for you.

Weightlifters find Alpha GPC and Huperzine A 1% helpful in doses of 300mg and 10mg respectively, usually stacked together.  Other athletes may find aniracetam and oxiracetam useful in doses around 750mg two times per day.  Find the stack or single supplement that works best for you, and enjoy greater athletic success!

Sources

  1. http://www.nutritionjrnl.com/article/S0899-9007(12)00089-5/
  2. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0014299901010056

Top 4 Nootropics: Nootropic Stack for Studying

Finals can be stressful, a nootropic stack for studying can helpIf you are returning to college then you know tough work is ahead. Sure, there will be old friends to hang out with and new friends to meet, but also a lot of studying and work and going to classes.The demands placed upon your time and mental and physical energy can be intense.

In many cases, these demands can cause diet and even sleep schedules to suffer. Fortunately, a category of supplements known as Nootropics can help to improve your memory and mental function. The following is a great, perhaps the best, nootropic stack for studying.

Alpha GPC:

The first brain boosting supplement is Alpha GPC. The purpose of this supplement is to boost levels of Acetylcholine within the brain. Acetylcholine is a powerful neurotransmitter that is believed to play a vital role in memory formation, learning capacity, and a number of other mental and cognitive processes. Not only that, but it also helps to make the other components of this stack even more effective. Take up to 600mg daily.

L-Theanine:

L-Theanine is a great supplement to improve focus and leads to a relaxed and almost meditative state. If you are a coffee or other caffeine drinker, this one will help to relieve all of the jitters normally felt from those types of products and replace it with a clean and simple type of focus. Basically, this supplement helps to smooth out brain waves and allows you to relax much easier. Take up to 200mg daily.

Pramiracetam:

One of the premier members of the Racetam family of Nootropic supplements, Pramiracetam is an incredibly powerful memory booster. Using this supplement will also help with studying and can even be used up to twice a day. Take 300 to 600mg daily (one or two doses). A little experimentation can determine which type of dosing schedule works best for your body chemistry.

Optional:

The last member of this stack can vary, depending on what you are studying or if you were looking for a certain type of help.

Oxiracetam:

Oxiracetam is known as a logic booster. It is incredibly helpful when studying or learning literal or logical based subjects like economics, math, and number based concepts. Facts and figures seem to come much more easily as well. Take 750 to 1500mg on days when it is needed.

Aniracetam:

Aniracetam is used more to help with figurative and creative types of thinking. This supplement is good for subjects like English and writing. You will find new ideas and thoughts just flowing more or less freely.

Using Creatine to Counteract Brain Fog from Nootropics

Nootropic supplements, although being relatively safe and posing no drastic negative effects, usually come with a few side effects.

Although these side effects will vary from person to person, one of the most common is called brain fog. Many nootropic users opt to use a choline source to combat brain fog, but

creatine nootropic – creatine can have nootropic effects on the braincholine supplements can be very expensive (such as Alpha GPC, the superior choline source).

So what is the savvy nootropic fan to do? Interestingly enough, creatine can provide the relief from brain fog you are seeking.

What is Brain Fog?

This is one of the few instances where the problem sounds exactly like what it is: Fog in your brain. It is the feeling of mental confusion or lack of mental clarity. Effects of brain fog can include feelings of detachment and forgetfulness. Some people even experience problems with their vision.

Other symptoms range from problems with short-term memory to limited attention span. Certain individuals experience brain fog slowly over a brief period while others feel it progress very quickly.

What is Creatine?

Creatine is a supplement that is especially popular with bodybuilders due to its ability to supply energy to your muscles. Creatine is a natural nutrient that is a combination of three amino acids.

A creatine supplement is able to increase the muscle stores of phosphocreatine, potentially increasing the muscles’ ability to resynthesize ATP (adenosine triphosphate). This process is especially necessary when the body has high energy demands such as during workouts.

Creatine can be naturally found in food such as fish and meat and in wild game such as deer, quail, turkey, wild boar, and the like. For an initial Creatine dosage it is recommended to start at 20grams per day (this is for creatine monohydrate, the oldest and most widely used creatine supplement).

Creatine monohydrate requires a loading phase; after that doses reduce dramatically. However, different forms of creatine have different recommended doses such as Creatine HCL, which only requires 750mg per day.

So why use creatine at all if it is purely a body building supplement?

Because it can do so much more.

Creatine Nootropic – Creatine for Brain Fog and Creatine as  a Nootropic

The use of nootropics such as the racetams (Piracetam, Aniracetam, Pramiracetam, etc.) may cause brain fog in some cases. Users attribute this to the lack of balance in diet and dosage when taking these supplements. One can become overdosed or experience negative side effects including brain fog if the food consumption is not monitored.

In effect, high doses of nootropics pull you further away from your normal ATP consumption rate. In order to maintain balance, your ATP intake should be able to keep up with your ATP consumption.

As mentioned, creatine is known to increase the ATP in the body which makes it a favorite among nootropic stacks. By aiding in the production of ATP, creatine is able to block negative effects and act as a nootropic itself.

A study conducted on 45 vegetarian subjects with the purpose of isolating the effect of the supplement with natural creatine in meat found improvement in what is called fluid intelligence (the ability to find meaning in confusion, make connections and solve problems). This intelligence is the opposite of crystallized intelligence which includes ability to add, tie shoelaces, and the like. This increase in fluid intelligence is a major factor in counteracting brain fog.

In addition to creatine brain fog uses, creatine has some nootropic properties of its own. Creatine acts as a neuroprotectant, meaning it protects brain cells from damage. Specifically, creatine protects against excitotoxicity, which causes damage to nerve cells potentially even killing them from excessive stimulation by certain neurotransmitters.

If you find yourself suffering from brain fog and you don’t have the cash to spend on Alpha GPC, creatine is an excellent alternative for you.

Racetams to Boost Creativity

Racetams

aniracetam can help with creativityRacetams are incredibly effective and diverse supplements. Not only do they have cognitive enhancing benefits such as increasing memory and learning capacity along with an improvement in overall cognition, but they may even be able to help boost your creativity. Taking a look at some of the more popular Racetams can show more clearly the surprising range of beneficial effects they may have, including the ability to stimulate our creativity.

Piracetam and Creativity:

One of the best things about Piracetam is its ability to stimulate the flow of information between both hemispheres of the brain. This stimulation is done by increasing the production of ATP in the cerebral cortex of the brain.

In addition to the increased energy, there is also enhanced blood flow, oxygen uptake, and even glucose metabolism. It is thought that within the corpus callosum area of the brain Piracetam is responsible for helping to create new neurons, synapses, and connections. These effects help to improve the inter-hemispheric flow of information. As a result of all this flow, overall cognitive function is enhanced including creativity.

Aniracetam and Creativity:

Aniracetam is a supplement that has essentially the same cognitive benefits and effects as Piracetam, only stronger. Not only that, but it also has a very pronounced anti-stress effect on many users. So, those who are suffering from undue stress would benefit greatly from this supplement.

This is the supplement to take for those interested in being ‘clear.’ Many users report that it helps to improve their social confidence along with verbal fluency. After a few days, you should begin to see a strong increase, along with original ideas and creative thinking just seemingly coming from nowhere. The effect is very striking and very noticeable.

Oxiracetam and Creativity:

Even though Oxiracetam is generally known as the logic enhancer for its ability to facilitate clear mathematical problem solving ability, it also helps to improve creativity. Many users actually feel a number of their senses to be heightened while taking this supplement. This is especially true with sound. A musician, for example, would feel like they were in heaven.

The supplement is also highly motivating, making people just want to get off their backsides and be productive. There is also a slight stimulation of the central nervous system felt which may contribute to any or all of these effects.

Does Racetam Efficacy Build Over Time?

Racetam Efficacy

Since the development of the racetam family of nootropic supplements, much research has taken place regarding their effects. Although the exact methods of action are still not entirely clear, this lack of knowledge only underscores how little modern science really understands about the brain. What is certain is that these supplements have huge potential. Many users have received tremendous cognitive benefits; some have also reported major improvements to their stress, anxiety, and overall mood. One important question that is only recently beginning to be explored is whether or not racetams have long-term effects, and do these effects build over time?

Major Racetam Effects and Benefits:

There have been an incredibly wide range of benefits and effects associated with the racetam family of supplements. These include improved memory and recall, enhanced learning capacity, lengthened attention spans, increased mental energy, focus, and concentration. Many users also report having improved sensory perception especially related to extra-visual acuity and hearing. Racetams are also able to reduce levels of stress and anxiety.

Possible Side Effects:

In general, racetams are well tolerated and do not have much in the way of negative side effects. In fact, as long as the recommended dosage levels are followed, side effects are quite rare. Of these, the most common is headaches, normally caused by the body becoming more efficient at the use of some key neurotransmitters. The answer to this is normally to add a high-quality choline supplement to your regimen. Other potential side effects include irritability, nervousness, anxiety, and GI distress.

Possible Long-Term Effects:

The real question is whether or not any of the beneficial effects of racetams can build up or last on a long-term basis. Research does indicate that there are some overall long-term brain-health effects. Many of these supplements have a neuroprotective element to them, meaning that they can help prevent damage to the neurons. These effects are believed to last even after usage is discontinued.

The ability to build new synapses and connections within the brain is also a hot topic of research. There is some evidence to suggest that some racetams do have this effect. Many are able to improve communications between the two hemispheres of the brain, and it is thought this is because of these new synapses. This could be a potentially long-term effect which builds over time. Either way, these supplements definitely demand continued study and attention.

Can Nootropics Enhance Your Sense of Taste?

Also referred to as memory supplements, neuro enhancers, or cognitive enhancers, nootropics have become the center of attention in the supplement community in the past few years. There are various classifications of nootropics that use different mechanisms of action, one of the most popular being those from the racetam family.

Nootropics have a variety of effects, such as sensory enhancement. Before we go into that, let’s have a brief overview of nootropics can boost the sensesthe most common nootropics and their uses.

Common Nootropics and Their Uses

Piracetam– a derivative of the neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), this nootropic belongs to the racetam family and is usually used as a brain booster. Piracetam also has neuroprotective and anticonvulsant properties and also improves neuroplasticity. Dosage is 2-6 grams per day.
Uses:
• Slows deterioration of the brain
• Improves alertness, socialization and I.Q
• Increases memory and verbal learning

Aniracetam– a fat-soluble racetam (thereby fast acting) memory supplement that impacts IQ and creativity. Aniracetam is also known to have a period of effectiveness between 6-7 hours. It also is said to have stress-relieving properties.
Uses:
• Potentially benefits memory formation
• Improves judgement and mood qualities

Oxiracetam– another member of the racetam family that appears to improve brain function.

Vinpocetine– a nootropic that is known to enhance blood flow to the brain, eyes and ears. Vinpocetine is a derivative from Vincamine.
Uses:
• Stimulates information processing, attention, cortical/behavioral arousal, learning, and memory
• Reduces abnormal blood clots
• Boosts mental energy and blood circulation

L-theanine– an amino acid that is involved in inhibiting stress, anxiety, worry, and nervousness.

Choline– a common supplement among nootropic stacks because of its ability to increase the levels of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine which is usually depleted with the intake of some racetams.

Nootropics and Sensory Enhancement

Now back to the question of whether nootropics can have sensory enhancement abilities especially in the area of taste. The bottom line is that there is no conclusive evidence as to the ability of nootropics to enhance taste in particular. However, nootropics in the racetam family have benefits including increased sensory perception. Users of nootropics report effects such as enhanced vision (colors and objects become more vivid), enhanced hearing, and enhanced touch. Aniracetam is also among the nootropics that users claim to have sensory enhancement benefits. Other nootropics with this effect include Piracetam and Noopept.

The Inner Workings of Racetams

Racetams are a family of supplements known as nootropics. This comes from the Greek meaning ‘mind-turning,’ due to their ability to affect brain and cognitive functions. There are a number of supplements classified within this racetam family and the inner workings of each, including their mechanisms of action are all fairly similar. Yet, at the same time, each of these supplements can offer slightly different benefits and results. How does each of the major racetams work? Can they be taken together, or in different combinations?

Piracetam Review

The first nootropic was Piracetam, first synthesized in 1964 by a Belgian pharmaceutical company. It does appear to have some interesting effects and benefits upon improving cognitive functions, especially in those suffering from age-related mental decline. There is also no toxicity to this supplement.

Despite the fact that this has been on the market for a number of years, the mechanisms of action are still not entirely understood. It appears to enhance membrane fluidity by interacting directly with cell membranes. It controls excessive excitation within the brain largely by binding to both glutamate receptors and affecting the levels of circulating acetylcholine.

Aniracetam Review

Another entry into the racetam family, Aniracetam, is more potent than Piracetam. It also is one of the few fat-soluble racetam members and this may be why many consider it to be more effective. This one is more geared towards improving creativity and holistic thinking, rather than Piracetam which seems to exert mild effects in a more general fashion. Aniracetam also has shown a surprising efficacy in helping to reduce feelings of anxiety and low moods.

The mechanism of action in this supplement is believed to be a positive modulation of certain excitatory receptors in the brain known as AMPA receptors. It also decreases the rate of receptor desensitization. This may be why the effects typical manifest as controlled and prolonged neurological stimulation.

Oxiracetam Review

The main benefit of Oxiracetam is potency. It is actually quite similar to the original Piracetam, improving many of the same processes. These beneficial processes include improving the effectiveness of brain training games, boosting memory, improving general cognitive function, repairing damage done by excessive alcohol consumption, and possibly effective in dealing with cognitive disorders and age-related memory loss.

Oxiracetam is fast acting and believed to effect the production of both acetylcholine and glutamate. These neurotransmitters play an important role in our ability to sustain attention in the CNS. This is also likely why short-term memory and learning are positively affected.

Bottom Line

While all the members of the racetam family do have essentially similar mechanisms of action, we should still keep in mind a number of other factors. First, each supplement will affect different people in different ways. Also, the potency can vary considerably from supplement to supplement. Also bear in mind that stacking different nootropics and ractems may provide a synergistic effect, this should be done carefully and under controlled circumstances.

The Best Nootropic for Memory in the Long Term

Nootropics are highly popular among people who want to increase their brain capacity and improve their memory. However, many of the nootropics available only work on the short term but not a lot of people are willing to invest in nootropics that will not benefit their mental health in the long term. It is no secret that memory span will shorten as you get older. Yet for some older people, memory does not seem to be too big of an issue and they can recall things much quicker than their peers. There are various reasons this could happen, but studies have shown that nootropics can both protect the memory from degrading in older subjects, as well as enhance memory.

Vinpocetine is a semisynthetic extract from the periwinkle plant. This nootropic has been reported to help increase cerebral blood flow and enhance concentration and memory. Many studies have been done on this nootropic in Europe and clinical studies found that it provides several advantages to the human brain when taken. It is often used to help with memory loss and other age related mental disorders. The benefits of taking vinpocetine are neuroprotective effects, increased blood flow to the brain, it acts as an anti-inflammatory agent, and it improves long term memory.

Best Nootropic for Memory: Oxiracetam

What is the best nootropic for memory enhancement? Racetams of course are some of the most popular memory enhancing nootropics. Oxiracetam, to be specific, is one of the most potent racetams available. Oxiracetam is another water-soluble nootropic, and is generally recommended to help fight cognitive decline that comes with aging. Its neuroprotective properties help improve the brain’s physical health while also helping with age related issues such as memory loss. This is done by stimulating the production of the neurotransmitters glutamate and acetylcholine. Acetylcholine activates muscles in the peripheral nervous system and is the only neurotransmitter used in the motor division of the somatic nervous system.

The benefits of taking oxiracetam are improved effectiveness of brain training games, increased motivation and focus, increased spatial learning and contextual learning abilities, and improved memory. Oxiracetam has various positive effects as a neuromodulator which means that it affects the brains short term memory, long term memory, and the ability to learn.

Racetam Review and Comparison: Best Racetam for Studying?

For students at any level, be it high school, college, or even professionals looking to continue learning in their field, study plays a big part in the learning process.

The objective of studying material is essentially to first understand the topic, be able to remember it on a factual level and then be able to apply it to the real world.  This entire process of taking in and synthesizing information takes a lot of brainpower, focus, concentration and motivation.

This can be particularly difficult in today’s busy society, demanding more and more of your time. Many students work multiple jobs to cover exorbitant college tuitions.

Finding time to studying and then actually buckling down to properly absorb the information isn’t always easy, but it can be made simpler and more effective with the right study techniques and help from some cost-effectvive nootropic supplements.

Best Racetam for Studying

Racetams, a widely-used family of nootropics, are ideal for studying. There are different racetams though, so one question that often comes up is which is the best racetam for studying?

When it comes to studying, racetams as a whole provide a host of effects that can help you when you’ve got your nose in a book:

  • Improved memory and recall (short and long)
  • Increased focus and concentration
  • Improved intellectual clarity
  • Alertness
  • General feelings well-being

There are four racetams commonly used today: Piracetam, aniracetam, oxiracetam, and pramiracetam. Each one of them follows the same basic mechanism of action, but vary in strength and exact benefits. I find some racetams reviews can be misleading so I’ve outlined my own thoughts on each of these four racetams below.

Racetams Defined

Piracetam

Piracetam is the original and most popular racetam. It’s often seen as a starter for racetam users as it’s less potent than the others. Make no mistake though, piracetam is a great nootropic and its efficacy is backed by tons of clinical and anecdotal evidence. For studying, it can help retention and focus.

Aniracetam

Aniracetam has also been used for quite some time. Not only is Aniracetam is stronger than piracetam, one of the most noted differences is the anxiolytic (anti-anxiety) effect it provides. In addition to helping with memory retention and focus, it helps you feel more calm and relaxed.

Students and professionals alike both have high-stress lives and easing the stress is an added bonus that can help mental performance and the negative byproduct of stress. Anecdotal feedback is that aniracetam can be a good study aid for subjects that require creative thinking.

Oxiracetam

Oxiracetam VS Aniracetam is a common battle between nootropic fanatics. Oxiracetam is an alternative to aniracetam that’s been described as having more of a stimulating and motivating effect than aniracetam. In contrast to aniracetam, oxiracetam is described as being helpful when studying logical, linear subjects like math.

Pramiracetam

Pramiracetam is the strongest of the racetams, being 10-30x more potent than piracetam. Like oxiracetam, it has a stimulatory effect, but is amplified further. This can provide even more motivation and study. It is also a very effective supplement for memory enhancement and recall.

So Which is the Best Racetam?

Since all of the racetams are proven to be effective, it can be difficult to choose only one as the best racetam. If you’re new to racetams, piracetam is a great start. Beyond that, user feedback seems to indicate that it’s a bit subjective and open to personal preference and goals. For example, a math student may find oxiracetam more beneficial while a literature student may enjoy aniracetam more. Ultimately, it comes down to trying one out and finding the best for you.