Category: Beginners

A Listing of Natural Nootropic Supplements

There are several groups of nootropics, including natural nootropic supplements.  Natural nootropic supplements have been around for a long time, but only recently have they started being treated as nootropics in the sense of providing a boost to cognitive abilities.  The purpose of this list is to call out the natural nootropics in the market.

1. Adaptogen List

Adaptogens are herbs that may help with the body’s resistance to stress, often by helping to reduce cortisol. They may also offer neurotransmitter support and promote enhancements in cognitive functioning and energy levels. Adaptogens are herbs and though many have had research via NIH, most have not been evaluated by the FDA for treating disease. As such some research evidence may be inconclusive.

  • Rhodiola Rosea
  • Bacopa Monnieri
  • Panax Ginsing
  • Siberian Ginsing
  • Ashwagandha
  • Holy Basil

2. Dopaminergics

Dopaminergic nootropics are any substance related to dopamine in order to increase cognitive function. Some dopaminergic drugs are excluded from this list because they are prescription stimulants or dangerous illicit drugs. Even though these stimulant substances can enhance alertness and focus, they are not considered nootropic due to their safety issues.

MAO-B Inhibitors

  • Phenylethylamine (PEA)
  • Hordenine
  • Catechin
  • Epicatechin (Reversible)

Dopamine Precursors

  • L-Theanine
  • Mucuna Pruriens (L-DOPA)
  • Phenylalanine
  • L-Tyrosine

3. Cholinergics

Cholinergics are any type of nootropic involving acetylcholine creation, transmition or the modulation of its receptors.

Choline/Acetylcholine Affecting Supplements

  • Choline Bitatrate
  • Choline Citrate
  • Phosphatidylcholine
  • Alpha GPC (GPC Choline)
  • Citicoline (CDP Choline)
  • Acetyl L-Carnitine
  • Centrophenoxine

AChe Inihibtors

  • Huperzine A
  • Galantamine (Snowdrop)

4. Other Semi-Natural Nootropic Supplements

This list of nootropic encompasses all nootropics which are derived from some natural compound or substance. These also include analouges or substances created from a natural structure. The brackets represent what natural compound the nootropic was derivered from.

  • Centrophenoxine (DMAE)
  • Idebenone (CoQ10)
  • Sulbutiamine (B1)
  • Pyritinol (B6)
  • Agmatine Sulfate (l-arginine)

5. Other Natural Nootropic Supplements

This list of natural nootropic supplements includes a large scope of natural compounds which includes herbal products as well as compounds that are derived from herbal or natural substances. Some of the natural products are also listed in the categories above.

Herbal Nootropics

  • Bacopa Monnieri
  • Rhodiola Rosea
  • Huperzine A
  • Hordenine
  • Vinpocetine
  • Gotu Kola
  • L-Theanine
  • Ginseng
  • Ashwagandha
  • Lion’s Mane Mushroom
  • Ginko Biloba
  • Lemon Balm Extract

Brain Nutrients

  • Omega 3-6-9
  • B-Vitamins
  • Choline
  • DMAE
  • Inositol
  • Creatine
  • Uridine
  • Co Enzyme 10
  • SAM-e
  • L-Carnitine

How to Build a Nootropic Stack for Beginners

Many beginners read about nootropic stacking and get confused due to the plethora of information available. Stacks can be very effective but can also have downsides if used improperly. The key to a successful stack is balance and patience.

The best stacks are built through trial and error and should be a combination of both nootropics and brain nutrients. The most advanced stacks are built to increase the efficiency of neurotransmitters as well as to improve the health of the brain long term.

Understanding your neurochemistry is the first step to a successful brain stack. A highly successful stack for one person may not be the best for another person. One common mistake is to pile on too much too fast. This makes it hard to pinpoint what is working and what is not. Cholinergics, ampakines or dopaminergics may be working but it may be impossible to tell which area to focus in if you are using all at once.

Using too much can create too many side effects and turn you off nootropics for good. Also, some nootropics can work against each other. This is where a complete understanding of neurochemistry comes into play. Follow these steps to understand the proper steps to building an advanced beginner stack.

Step 1: Build a Solid Foundation

aniracetam powder

Starting with the basics is always your best bet when building a nootropic stack. Starting with the basics would be to start with a cholinergic that has been well researched and proven. Piracetam and noopept are great to start with as powerful cholinergics. You may decide to use these or other racetams like aniracetam as a starting point.

Buy several cholinergic nootropics and see what works best on its own. When picking out a cholinergic, some are good to stack and others not so much. The ones not recommended to stack are already powerful on their own and do not usually get benefits from adding in weaker products. Here is what works and what doesn’t when stacking together.

Stack well together (as cholinergics)

  • Piracetam
  • Aniracetam
  • Oxiracetam
  • Phenylpiracetam

Work well alone (as cholinergics)

  • Noopept
  • Pramiracetam

Step 2: Add Choline if needed

Once you get a cholinergic stack formulated, you may decide to add in acetylcholine-boosting compounds. There are several reasons for this. Adding in acetylcholine, choline and related phospholipids may help to add synergy and make the stack even more powerful. They may also contribute to side effects. This is why a stack has to be completed in steps.

Choline can add great benefits. Choline and acetylcholine boosting compounds like lecithin, choline salts, alpha GPC and citicoline are all part of this family. These compounds may interact differently with your body. Some may produce benefits or side effects while others may not.

Generally it is recommended to add in a choline source but try each unit in the cholinergic stack independently. This will help you to determine if something is causing a reaction. From here determine how to further formulate the stack.

Step 3: Add Supporting Supplements & Nutrients

Once you are confident in your basic nootropic stack you may decide to create an advanced stack. By this time you should have a basic understanding of your neurochemistry. Adding in further supporting nootropics as well as brain nutrients and antioxidants is a true brain stack. The goal of an advanced stack is not only to improve cognitions, but to help to preserve the brain and reduce brain aging.

There are some things to help boost a cholinergic stack. Adding in an ACh inhibitor may help to provide synergy even further. This is another step you can take if cholinergic nootropics are working very well for you. This method is usually done after adding choline and is best for those highly deficient in choline. Adding in an ACh inhibitor may add in further side effects so do it independently of adding a choline source.

You may decide to add in more non-cholinergic nootropics and stimulants. Many of these nootropics may help to provide neurotransmitter support. Improving levels of serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine may all help to add improved benefits to a stack. You may decide to enhance the stack further by creating a mood/anxiolytic stack based on your needs.

There are many natural supplements that help to improve neurotransmitters. Going in depth into this goes beyond the scope of this article and is another topic. This area will come with experimentation and learning.

Step 5: Modify the stack

As you build your nootropic stack you will add in and remove certain supplements. You will find what works and what doesn’t. You may decide to cycle or change stacks in the morning and the evening. This is where the experienced nootropic user learns their body and creates a stack for peak optimal performance.

How to Choose the Right Nootropic

Choosing the right nootropic can be a confusing task. You may have put in hours of research to only be confused more. Choosing the right nootropic to try for the first time is imperative as it will introduce you to the qualities of these brain enhancers.

Also, not every nootropic will work the same for everyone. Some may find that a product works great from them and then they will recommend this to a friend. This friend may be disappointed and turned off from nootropics rather than trying more options. Alternatively, the user may experience many side effects due to the fact that the product is too strong for them or that they are using an unfit dosage for them.

What We Recommend

Always start out small. Low doses and the smaller and less complicated the stack, the better. Some people jump right in and buy a whole stack and then complain about side effects and brain fog. This is because they are overloading there system and trying too much rather than working the product into their system.

We highly recommend to start out with cholinergics. Piracetam and Aniracetam are great on their own for a beginner. Noopept is also great. To begin, getting piracetam, aniracetam and noopept is a good idea. If one does not respond well to the racetams, they can try noopept or vice versa.

Incorporating a choline source is also a good idea for a beginner. You don’t have to go overboard on the choline and the choline source will simply allow for you to supply your brain with extra choline. This can help potentiate the effects of racetams as well as possibly reduce or avoid headache problems. It is always a good idea to have choline on hand

Experiencing Side Effects

The more nootropics you add and the higher the dosages, the more likely you will experience side effects. This is one common problem when someone builds a complicated stack and then has problems right away. These problems can be narrowed down easier when there is less nootropics in the stack as one nootropic may be causing the problems.

One common issue is brain fog. Brain fog can manifest itself when the individual is sensitive to the cholinergic changes within the brain. This can cause other neurotransmitter system to become affected. When the person experiences this, they may become discouraged and decide to quit the nootropics.

This problem is usually experienced when the individual is taking too much or too many different cholinergics. The best route in this case, is to start lowering the dosage and even cutting it in half. If you are using more than one product, cutting out different products through trial and error may help narrow down the culprit.

Best Beginner Stacks

Choosing a beginner stack can be a great option. There are many more advanced nootropics you can add to the stack as well as supporting vitamins and nutrients to help your brain function at maximum efficiency.

Below we will list some of the best nootropic stacks for a beginner. When we say “choline” this refers to a whole range of choline and acetylcholine precursors. It is up to you what you decide to choose. We recommend to use citicoline or alpha gpc for cholinergic neurotransmitter support as these are the best options with the least side effects.

  • Piracetam + Choline
  • Aniracetam + Choline
  • Noopept + Choline
  • Piracetam + Hydergine
  • Piracetam + Huperzine A

If Nootropics Do Not Work

When you first try a nootropic in the recommend dosage you may be let down initially. The best nootropics take time to work into your system and have cumulative effects. Many other drugs and supplements do not have cumulative effects as their effects enter the system and then are eliminated.

Racetams on the other hand, work best under continued dosing. We recommend to use a product for 2 weeks before throwing in the towel. You may decide to increase the dosage during this period. Also remember, that these are not stimulants and therefore you may not notice effects on the central nervous system. Look for other cues for nootropics effects.

Conversation may become easier or you may be able to write quicker and with less thought. These are the kinds of things you will notice on nootropics. Once you understand this you can begin to improve further in how you use nootropics. Good luck on your first choice to try these wonderful brain enhancers. We hope the experience brings change and positivity into your lives.