Beginner’s Guide to Using Nootropics

Beginner's Guide to Nootropics

Getting started with nootropics is a great way to boost your mental performance and overall daily wellness. Nootropics are gaining popularity for their wide range of benefits for the brain and physical performance, which is why more adults are looking to use these natural products.

While there is plentiful information on these natural products, nootropics for beginners should be made as simple as possible. The information ahead is designed to help you start out with nootropics and understand how these compounds may help give you the daily boost that you’re looking for.

face with light blubDefining Nootropics

Nootropics are a natural group of drugs or supplements that are known to help enhance cognitive performance.1 These drugs work in various ways to boost cognition, memory, attention, and motivation. This mental and cognitive boost may be a result of increased blood flow to the brain.

Some researchers suggest that nootropics act as vasodilators, compounds that increase the size of blood vessels, thereby resulting in this increased blood flow.2 Due to the increased blood flow to the brain and a potential boost in mental performance, nootropics are commonly referred to as “smart drugs.”

The History of Nootropics

In order to dive into nootropics for beginners, it’s important to know the history of these smart drugs and where they originate. For starters, most nootropics are compounds that are synthesized in a laboratory setting. In addition, nootropics can be all-natural and derived from plant sources, which are common among a number of plant extracts.

Nootropics have been around for centuries, even in ancient times. During these times, plants were the main source of nootropics. Compounds like ginseng, Gingko biloba, coffee, and tea used to be the primary sources of nootropics. These natural compounds paved the way for the synthesis of nootropics in laboratories today.

The first synthesized nootropic drug was discovered in the 1960s by the Romanian doctor Corneliu Giurgea. The first drug that was discovered was piracetam and was originally used for relieving motion sickness. Soon after discovering that this compound may help individuals with motion issues, piracetam was discovered to have memory-boosting effects on the brain.3

Considering motion sickness is something that occurs in the brain, stumbling on the added benefits of improved cognition was something that led to more research involving similar compounds and the effects they have on overall mental well-being.

Current research and use of nootropics are now widely accepted. Today, studies continue to demonstrate the benefits of using nootropics for enhanced mental performance.

Who Uses Nootropics and Why?

In short, there is no “ideal individual” who should use these compounds. In fact, the use of nootropics is common among children, teenagers, young adults, athletes, older adults, students, workers, and anyone who simply wants a boost to daily life.

Perhaps one of the most common reasons to take nootropics is for the added cognitive performance they offer. This enhanced cognition tends to be due to an increase in adaptogens in the brain, which can help increase attention and endurance when the mind senses fatigue and weakness.4 In addition, adaptogens can help fight fatigue by reducing the amount of stress in certain systems of the body.

While there are many reasons to try nootropics, it seems that most beginners are drawn to the anti-fatigue and cognitive-boosting effects that nootropics offer.

man focusing on workWhat Do Nootropics Do?

Nootropics offer a wide range of benefits to mental health and focus, but more on what they actually can do is ahead. Given that these smart drugs offer benefits that can boost daily productivity and drive, it should be noted that these drugs, or supplements, are not a one-time fix-all. They are intended to be used for a prolonged period of time to induce physiological results in the body. With this in mind, taking nootropics consistently may help boost:

Focus and Attention

Some nootropics such as Gingko biloba and caffeine can help to boost focus and attention. Studies have shown that caffeine and gingko can help to boost alertness, focus, motivation, and certain cognitive functions.5,6

Reduced Stress

Taking nootropics does not necessarily mean you will feel calm throughout the day, but some may help alleviate stress in the mind. Stress is known to create cognitive decline, which some nootropics like L-Tyrosine can help prevent.7

Better Sleep

One common issue among adults is getting adequate sleep each night. Nootropics serve a valuable role in enhancing sleep time and quality, and one of the most widely studied nootropic agents for sleep is melatonin. Studies show that melatonin can help reduce the amount of time it takes for the body to fall asleep and increase time spent sleeping.8

Next Steps

One of the most challenging issues among nootropics for beginners is where to start. Starting off with nootropics for cognition is generally the best way to go, but the data on the wide range of supplements is endless. For this reason, starting simple and going from there may be the best start. In addition, some beginners may choose to stack nootropic drugs.

Depending on the results you desire, consider starting with one nootropic that aligns with your intended goal. It is not recommended to take multiple drugs on your first attempt, especially if you have not given doses a chance.

Instead, consider starting slow with one or two nootropics at a time to see how your body responds. Start at or below the recommended daily dose and then change dosages over time as needed. Not all of these drugs have the same effect for everyone, which is why beginners should be cautious prior to first-time use. Also be sure to read over the safety and risks for each nootropic before taking.

Conclusion

If you’re new to nootropics, the information above can help set you up for success when it comes to boosting cognitive function, increasing motivation, and enhancing focus. With time, you’ll be able to find what works for you and be on your way to boosting your overall well-being and productivity.

Photo credits:  VonaUA/shutterstock.com, fizkes/shutterstock.com, LuckyStep/shutterstock.com


Maddy J.

By Maddy Jenner

Maddy is a researcher and an essential oil advocate and loves learning about the intersection of these categories. She loves hiking, camping, exploring and being outside.

Favorite MONQ blend: Zen

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The above information relates to studies of specific individual essential oil ingredients, some of which are used in the essential oil blends for various MONQ diffusers. Please note, however, that while individual ingredients may have been shown to exhibit certain independent effects when used alone, the specific blends of ingredients contained in MONQ diffusers have not been tested. No specific claims are being made that use of any MONQ diffusers will lead to any of the effects discussed above.  Additionally, please note that MONQ diffusers have not been reviewed or approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. MONQ diffusers are not intended to be used in the diagnosis, cure, mitigation, prevention, or treatment of any disease or medical condition. If you have a health condition or concern, please consult a physician or your alternative health care provider prior to using MONQ diffusers.

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