Category: Racetams

A Comparison between Piracetam & Aniracetam

You may be deciding between piracetam and aniracetam. Perhaps you cannot afford to buy both or are simply just looking for a general comparison between the two supplements. Both piracetam and aniracetam have a lot of similarities and differences to evaluate.


In terms of popularity, piracetam is much more popular than aniracetam as a nootropic. This does not mean that piracetam is better than aniracetam but simply means that piracetam gets more publicity and widespread use. Aniracetam is the next most popular racetam next to piracetam. Regardless of this, piracetam is still over three times as popular as piracetam.

Piracetam also has a big advantage over aniracetam in the popularity department. It has been around longer and has many more studies than aniracetam. Since it was the first racetam developed it is often mentioned in a lot more in literature. Also, piracetam has been approved for a lot more medical uses in countries that have registered it as a drug which gives it even further publicity


Aniracetam is stronger in potency than piracetam. The average dosage is slightly smaller than with piracetam. Most people will dose 750-1500mg in comparison to 800-3000mg with piracetam. Piracetam is water soluble which means it is best taken on an empty stomach whereas aniracetam is fat soluble and best taken with food.

The bioavailability and half-lives of both substances are very different. Piracetam has a very good oral bioavailability of near 100% whereas aniracetam only has an oral bioavailability of 8.5%-11.5%. This is due to the fact that aniracetam is subject to a first pass metabolism in the liver. Piracetam has a half-life of 4-5 hours in comparison to aniracetam which has a short half-life of 1.5-2.5 hours.


Aniracetam is stronger than piracetam regardless of the much lower bioavailability and half-life. Both of these nootropic racetams act similarly on cholinergic pathways by acting as positive allostertic modulators of the acetylcholine receptors. The cholinergic effects may seem quite similar with possible increases in learning, memory and sensory perception. Piracetam is slightly stronger than aniracetam as a cholinergic nootropic.

Piracetam has little if any effects on glutamatergic systems. Aniracetam on the other hand acts as a modulator of the AMPA glutamate receptor. The ampakine-like activity of aniracetam may explain its slightly stronger benefits despite its lower half life and bioavailability.

Aniracetam may also affect certain serotonin receptors in conjunction with acetylcholine and glutamate receptors. This might explain possible anxiolytic (anxiety reducing) effects observed in animal models. This may be an added benefit of aniracetam that some people may experience. The benefit of this is that aniracetam may promote these effects without any sedation or inhibition of the mind.


Both piracetam and aniracetam are very safe supplements. They are some of the oldest racetams with several decades of published use. Neither have very high potential of overdose or addiction. One must still be careful when using these two as both can produce side effects especially evident in higher dosages.

The side effects of piracetam and aniracetam are likely to be similar. Headaches, nausea, depression and irritability may all be common. Both may also stimulate brain fog possibly due to the cholinergic hyperactivity caused by an off balance in catecholamine homeostasis. This might be able to be solved with certain tweaking and neurotransmitter support in sensitive individuals.


Both aniracetam and piracetam are different. When comparing which is a better nootropic, aniracetam will likely win due to its wider scope of benefits. Aniracetam is becoming increasingly more popular however it is likely to remain less popular than piracetam in the future.

Aniracetam and piracetam are great racetams to stack together. Both of these nootropics are very affordable and are well tolerated in most users. Stacking them together will allow for a wider range of effects overlapping into the cholinergic, glutamatergic and serotonergic systems. Adding in a choline stack with these two racetams may help to potentiate the effects even further.

The 3 Most Common Piracetam & Racetam Side Effects

Piracetam and the racetams can have a host of side effects. These side effects are often not considered to be serious however they can be highly annoying. Having knowledge about these side effects and what causes them may help you prevent them or possibly reduce the severity.

It is important to remember that while piracetam is generally very safe, it still follows a dosage pattern. The higher the dosage, the higher likelihood there will be unpleasant side effects. This same rule applies to all the racetams like aniracetam, pramiracetam, etc…

Piracetam & Headaches Causes

Piracetam headache is perhaps the most common side effect experienced with this racetam. The root cause may have several causes but there is one prominent theory. There has not been a lot scientific study into this area and most of this evidence is circumstantial as based on numerous individual user reports.

Having not enough choline in the brain is the number one theory behind piracetam headaches. Piracetam is a cholinergic compound and therefore it influences acetylcholine and receptor activity. This activity is believed to up regulate the receptors and cause a higher demand for choline and acetylcholine in certain parts of the brain.

The piracetam headache is not believed to be a serious risk however it is highly uncomfortable and most people will discontinue use. Many people find that supplementing a choline source can help to remove or reduce the headache with piracetam and racetams in general. Some of the better choline sources include alpha GPC and citicoline.

Piracetam Irritability & Depression Causes

Piracetam mood disorders are a common negative side effect commonly experienced. Different people may experience different problems with the substance. Irritability is very common. Some people find they have a shorter temper when taking piracetam. Others may experience depression as a side effect of piracetam. This is perhaps the most negative mood effect on can experience while taking racetam nootropics.

There have not been any directly related studies to nootropics and mood side effects however it is known that increasing cholinergic activity can affect other neurotransmitters. Since racetams have an effect on the cholinergic system, several other neurotransmitters relating to mood may be manipulated. Some people may experience this effect more than others and this is not considered to be dangerous.

Some of the neurotransmitters that are affected by cholinergic activity are norepinephrine, dopamine and serotonin. All of these neurotransmitters can play and important part in our mood. People may have these levels alerted differently than others which can explain the difference in mood side effects. These individuals can try lowering the piracetam dosage to reduce or stop these effects.

Piracetam “Brain Fog” Causes

One common side effect experienced with piracetam and similar racetams is brain fog. This brain fog has a lot of anti nootropic qualities and is the opposite desired effect. This problem is also thought to be related to a neurotransmitter imbalance. Increasing the cholinergic activity may influence other important cognitive neurotransmitters like dopamine. Dopamine like acetylcholine, also relates to memory and cognitive function.

It is unclear why some people may experience brain fog while others do not. One theory is that these people are more prone and sensitive to the effects of piracetam. There remains an important balance of cognitive neurotransmitters and strengthening one system may throw another one off kilter. Again, this remains dependant on the individual’s sensitivity and unique neurochemistry. One may try lowering the piracetam dosage to try to eliminate piracetam brain fog. If this still does not work, racetam nootropics may not be suited for the individual.