Where To Buy Nootropics: Get The Biggest Bang For Your Buck

Corneliu E. Giurgea, the Romanian chemist who first synthesized piracetam, developed the concept of nootropic substance in 1972. It is a combination of the Greek words “νους” (nous) meaning “mind”, and “τρoπoς” (tropos) meaning “bend” or “change”. This is what nootropics do. Essentially, they positively alter the way in which your mind works.

nootropic brainNootropic drugs are a specific subtype of psychoactive substances. According to Giurgea, in order for a drug or supplement to be considered a nootropic, it must adhere to the following criteria:

  1. Enhances learning and memory
  2. Enhances resistance of learned behaviors to conditions that will disrupt them
  3. Protects the brain against physical of chemical injuries (such as concussions or neurotoxic drugs)
  4. Increases the efficacy of cortical/subcortical control mechanisms of the brain (such as improving reaction time)
  5. Typically lacks negative side-effects (i.e. sedation), and possesses low toxicity

Though these criteria lay out the foundation for what a nootropic is, most modern definitions are much more general. As a more common definition, nootropics are chemical substances or herbal supplements that enhance cognition and mental function. Read more…

Recommended Nootropic Suppliers

* Modafinil and Armodafinil supplier



DOCS: Superhuman – Geniuses (Video)

Where does genius come from? Is it the byproduct of tireless work, developmental happenstance or divine inspiration? The documentary Superhuman: Genius explores this phenomenon by portraying the lives and accomplishments of five individuals for whom cerebral superiority is second nature.

The film opens with Akiane Kramarik, a 13-year old girl from Idaho who has painted with the detail and sophistication of a grand master since the age of four. She interprets her passion for painting as a literal calling from God, in spite of a complete lack of religious upbringing in her household. In nine short years, she’s amassed an astonishingly accomplished collection of over 100 original paintings, and has published her works in numerous volumes. Her artistic intuition is guided by a force she herself does not fully understand.

Ben Pridmore is first shown browsing through the grocery store aisles for product serial numbers, and later reciting them with perfect recall to the check-out clerk. His memorization of long and complex numbered sequences is an amazement to spectators, and has earned him the top prize at three World Memory Championships. Yet his achievements have not translated into monetary success, and he remains an unemployed accountant.

The 1988 film Rain Man is perhaps the most popular of pop culture references to the enigmatic nature of genius. Superhuman: Genius traveled to Utah to meet Kim Peek (now deceased), the real-life inspiration for that Oscar-winning film. Diagnosed with savant syndrome at an early age, and told he would never be able to walk, communicate or learn as a result of his disorder, Kim has since gained notoriety for possessing the sharpest memory in recorded history, absorbing nearly 98% of everything he read.

The film also spotlights Ariel Lanyi, a 10-year old pianist and composer from Israel who was fed classical music from the moment of his birth, and Ainan Cawley, a wunderkind in the world of science who passed O Level Chemistry at the age of seven.

Each of their stories certainly inspire awe, but they also bring forth a series of perplexing questions about the human condition. Is the capacity for genius merely an untapped potential in all of us?

Life Extension Videos

Donate to the International Longevity Alliance’s Major Mouse Testing Program

Donate to the International Longevity Alliance’s Major Mouse Testing Program

According to modern science aging is the accumulation of damage that the body cannot completely eliminate, due to the imperfections of its protection and repair systems. The good news is that the processes that constitute aging are amenable to medical intervention. We can slow down or even reverse some aspects of aging through the application of different therapies, which prevent or block some of these processes.

One of these processes of aging is cell senescence.

Senescent cells normally self destruct via a process called apoptosis, but unfortunately not all of them do. These “death resistant” senescent cells accumulate in the body with age and secrete toxic signals. This causes inflammation and damage to organs and tissues, increasing risks for cancer and other diseases of old age. This is why these cells are often called “good citizens but bad neighbors”. They remain partially functional, but their presence does more harm than good.

A new class of drugs known as Senolytics have recently demonstrated the ability to remove senescent cells to improve health. However, the potential of senolytics to increase health and lifespan beyond current maximums remains unknown. This is what we at Major Mouse Testing Program want to investigate – with your help!

Why is this study of particular interest?
It was discovered that senescent cells have increased expression of pro-survival genes, consistent with their resistance to natural cell death – apoptosis. Drugs targeting these pro-survival factors selectively killed senescent cells and improved health. Two such drugs were Dasatinib and Quercetin which were both able to remove senescent cells, albeit each in different tissue types. Even more excitingly it was discovered that a combination of the two drugs formed a synergy that was significantly more effective at removing some senescent cell types.

Venetoclax has also recently been discovered to be senolytic in nature and is a therapy we wish to explore as part of our combination testing. In cancer therapy Venetoclax has shown to work well with Dasatinib so we are interested in seeing if this can be applied to clearing senescent cells too.

Recent studies have shown removing senescent cells mitigates age related decline and improves healthy lifespan. Additional studies have shown that clearance of senescent cells is beneficial for cardiovascular health and lowers high cholesterol levels in the blood. This strongly suggests that Senolytics may be a viable therapeutic approach to combat aging.

In our study we have opted to treat already naturally aged mice. These mice will be 16-18 months old (equivalent to a human of approximately 60 years old). This has two advantages: we speed up research, and also demonstrate the feasibility of translating Senolytics to already middle aged or older humans.

Dasatinib and Venetoclax are already approved for use in humans to treat specific diseases, and Quercetin is a readily available supplement, so the application of these drugs or improved versions based upon them to prevent and postpone age-related damage to health could be developed relatively quickly.

Senolytics and Stem Cells
So far senolytics have only been shown to reduce the number of senescent somatic cells, but what effect do they have on stem cells? This has not been closely studied, and is a question we intend to fully answer in addition to the implications this presents for lifespan.

It is entirely possible that Senolytics taken alone may not extend maximum lifespan, but rather healthspan. Even if this is the case, it is no reason to be discouraged. What we learn in this first phase, paves the way for our next step – combining Senolytics with Stem Cell Therapy to encourage tissue regeneration.


Look at this beautiful DMAE ad from the 70s

This beautiful magazine advertisement from Eduardo A. Cánovas depicts the brain, that is, the primary target of Tonibral, one of the many names by which the p-acetamidobenzoate salt of DMAE was being sold, from the early 50s to the late 70s.

We already know by now that DMAE is basically useless as a nootropic, but what the hell, this is awesome, don’t you think?

DMAE Tonibral 70s ad


How to Study Effectively: 8 Advanced Tips (Video)

These study strategies go beyond the basics – memorization techniques, methods of fighting procrastination by hacking akrasia, a way to win the respect of your professors, and more.

  • 0:55 – #1 Corson Technique
  • 2:30 – #2 Spaced Repetition
  • 4:09 – #3 Method of Loci
  • 5:50 – #4 Akrasia
  • 7:35 – #5 Improve Pomodoro Technique
  • 9:20 – #6 Focused and Diffused thinking
  • 10:50 – #7 Gauging
  • 11:49 – #8 Start Problem Sets Alone
Adrafinil Armodafinil Modafinil

Modafinil vs Adrafinil vs Armodafinil: Which One Is Better?

For individuals who fall asleep on the job or have difficulty focusing in class, finding an effective treatment regimen can be truly life-changing. There are different medications available, yet often they require a prescription from a medical professional. Finding a sympathetic doctor can prove difficult and costly, not to mention time-consuming. That is why purchasing nootropics online may be an effective way of dealing with it.

Modafinil is a drug designed to help with these conditions, and while it traditionally requires a prescription in the United States, it is possible to buy Modafinil online. There are three compounds in particular that are highly rated in the nootropics community for their ability to enhance wakefulness and focus. Let’s take a look at them.


  1. Modafinil
  2. Adrafinil
  3. Armodafinil

These are three drugs of the -afinils family, and are designed to help battle sleepiness. Having a limited amount of sleep can negatively impact cognition, and may cause a person to struggle at work or school. This not only reduces a person’s ability to function properly but, particularly in manual labour, could even put them in danger. In order to avoid this sort of situation, we can use an eugeroic, a wakefulness-promoting agent.

Modafinil, Adrafinil, and Armodafinil are the three most popular and researched eugeroics.

What is Modafinil?

buy modafinil onlineSome refer to Modafinil as a “smart drug” due to its ability to help people improve their focus. However, in clinical practice it is only used to treat narcolepsy and other sleep disorders, and any other use is considered off-label.

Modafinil is the active ingredient in Provigil, which was first sold back in 1998 as an evolution of Adrafinil, its “little cousin”. Some have compared Modafinil to the prescription stimulant Adderall, only without the jittery feeling many people experience when taking the medication. Instead, Modafinil is designed to simply boost response and reaction time while honing in on an individual’s ability to focus.

What is Adrafinil?

Olmifon, brand name of AdrafinilAdrafinil is another narcolepsy based medication often prescribed to help improve focus and to prevent falling asleep. It was originally sold under several brands Olmifon but it is not sold anymore and it can be bought over the counter. It is derived from Modafinil and metabolizes into the drug within the liver, but it is much less effective , and only a minority of individuals report positive effects from it.

Adrafinil was discontinued in the early 2000s after several cases of elevated liver enzymes and hepatotoxicity appeared. Modafinil and Armodafinil, on the other hand, are totally liver-safe, as they don’t need to be intensively metabolized like Adrafinil.

Therefore, we strongly advise not to use Adrafinil.

What is Armodafinil?

A third narcolepsy medication prescribed in the United States and the rest of the world, it’s the dextro (right) enantiomer, the one that gives the famous positive effect of Modafinil. It is designed to be stronger while having fewer side effects. In short, Armodafinil is Modafinil’s “big brother”.

This is a medication generally used by people who are simply unable to remain awake for longer than a few hours. Due to the potency, it is often less prescribed than the other two offerings. That being said, some people prefer Armodafinil as it feels “cleaner” than Modafinil.

Differences and similarities

All three compounds are designed to help improve someone’s focus, while allowing them to stay awake longer. These drugs are not just used by students, but also people who work do long shifts, looking for a pick-me-up. The medication is often used by truck drivers who need to stay awake and alert for long hours of the day. Helicopter pilots, and those who work emergency shifts in hospitals are also frequent users of Modafinil/Armodafinil.

While these three -afinils are used for the same kinds of conditions, the drugs are different in their own peculiar way. First of all, each drug delivers a different dosage and a slightly different kind of effect. Adrafinil is the lightest of the three as far as effects, it requires a higher dose, it’s very liver-intensive and doesn’t work for everybody. Someone who may not respond to general caffeine may be best suited for this kind of a medication, but, in general, it’s better to avoid taking it completely and go with Modafinil instead.

Modafinil is the most commonly used of the three. It is prescribed for narcolepsy, shift work sleep disorder, and chronic fatigue. That said, it is also frequently prescribed off-label for other conditions.

Lastly, there is Armodafinil. This is the strongest of the three, and it’s also more expensive. Due to this, many doctors prefer prescribing Modafinil and adjust the dosage accordingly. However, for those people who not only struggle with staying awake on the job but actually fall asleep multiple times throughout the week (if not multiple times during the day) this is the way to go. It does have the same half-life as Modafinil, so it does not last longer, but it delivers a stronger and cleaner effect.

Dosage and Variations

As with any kind of medication, it is important to understand the correct dosage. As college students will likely purchase the drugs through a Modafinil online pharmacy, they are not actually receiving a Doctor’s prescription, and they have to research the proper dosage themselves.

150 mg is usually the recommended dosage for Modafinil and Armodafinil. It should be taken once a day at roughly the same time of the day (should be at least an hour before work starts).

Now, while 100 mg is the recommended dosage, it is highly recommended to start off with a smaller dosage initially. It can take the body a bit of time to become accustomed to the drug within the system. Starting out with an initial dosage of 75 mg and increasing from there allows the body to become a bit more acquainted to the medication. Plus, this way it is possible for who’s taking the drug to determine what works for them and whether or not they need to take the full dose.

Adrafinil, the lighter of the three medications, typically recommends anywhere from 200 to 400 mg a day. Again, it is extremely liver-intensive, so it should only be user as a last-resort, or, — if you just can’t live without it — take liver protective supplements like Milk Thistle or N-Acetylcysteine (NAC).

Ideally, these are not everyday drugs. It is important to not have the body become accustomed to the drug. The body can form a dependency on the medications, which can cause functional problems when not taking them. Due to this, it is recommended to use eugeroics no more than three-four times per week. While the addictive potential of -afinils is very low (nowhere near amphetamine-based stimulants), the drugs do stimulate the production of Dopamine in the brain, and anything that stimulates those receptors possesses an intrinsic addiction potential.


For anyone who is struggling to remain awake, or it’s not able to focus when they need to, a drug like Modafinil can be thoroughly life-changing. Getting a prescription for one of these drugs may be difficult since some doctors are not interested in helping their patients if they do not qualify for a medical condition. Buying one of the three drugs from an online retail pharmacy not only reduced the amount of time away from work but saves money, all while boosting cognition and the ability to focus while using the medication.

Fasoracetam Nootropics Racetams Reviews

Fasoracetam: How This Nootropic May Help You Focus Better

Originally known as NS-105, Fasoracetam is one of the newest nootropics on the market. Besides being the latest racetam to be discovered, it has some unique properties unlike any other racetam on the market. Let’s find out what makes this substance a truly unique nootropic, and why you should (or should not) try it.

One of the primary effects of Fasoracetam is the modulation of metabotropic glutamate receptors II and III (mGluR).[1] mGlu receptors have been shown to be involved in synaptic plasticity and neuroprotection. In addition, LY354740, am mGlu2/3 agonist, has been shown to be effective in generalized anxiety disorder.[2]

Fasoracetam is also the only racetam that significantly enhances cAMP formation[3] and that has been shown to be potentially effective in individuals with glutamatergic gene variants that are suffering from ADHD[4]. A Phase III clinical trial is near completion, but the drug is not currently listed as an ADHD treatment by the FDA.

Fasoracetam has also shown to have antidepressant effects[5] and to counteract learned helplessness, an avoidance behavior typically associated with depression. Fasoracetam, however, does not act on serotonin and other monoamines, and researchers think the antidepressant effect may stem from its ability to upregulate GABA-B receptors.[6]

Generally speaking, Fasoracetam has shown to be more effective with chronic use, and, in the ADHD study, most benefits were felt at week five onward.[7]
Fasoracetam ADHD

Mechanism of Action

In rat studies, fasoracetam restores the function of key receptors, glutamate mGluR II and III[8].  It also upregulates GABA-B receptors through receptor antagonism[9], a fact which may be related to its ability to reverse phenibut tolerance (which is one of the few supplements reported to relieve anhedonic depression). The GABA-B receptor is very important and has been found to play a role in cognition[10], anxiety and mood.

Alcohol, a very disinhibiting and fog-inducing compound (with pleasurable effects similar to phenibut) is thought to achieve its activity by activating GABA-B and A receptors (as well as dopamine).  However, because it downregulates these receptors, prolonged use may cause anxiety and cognitive disruptions.  Phenibut binds in a similar fashion to GABA-B.

FasoracetamBecause of its relatively narrow range of receptor targets, fasoracetam does not feel like a classic stimulant nor does it alter one’s feeling of wakefulness.  It lacks clinical dopamine activity but remarkably still managed to address ADHD symptoms, according to the study.  It is not clear how fasoracetam has such a specific utility in treating ADHD, more research on other neurotransmitters may be turned up in coming years, but judging on present evidence, it seems that Fasoracetam could reduce ADHD symptoms by modulating glutamatergic receptors.

That being said, the FDA does not list Fasoracetam as an ADHD medication and it should not be used as such. Only a professional can prescribe medications for ADHD and you should not self medicate.

Although it is a newer supplement without much of a user-base, it does appear to be well-tolerated even in large doses or extended periods. Among college students, it may soon become a mainstay, alongside other trusted nootropics such as Bacopa, Modafinil, and Noopept.


In addition to the findings surrounding glutamate and ADHD, rat studies have also revealed fasoracetam to have profound cholinergic activity.  Many common nootropics work by controlling acetylcholine, including several drugs used in the treatment of Alzheimer’s.

It increases the uptake of choline at sites in key brain regions involved in intelligence and mood, the hippocampus and cerebral cortex.  This, in turn, results in increased production and release of acetylcholine.[11]
This, similarly to what has been commonly reported with piracetam, may explain a need for choline supplementation in the case of symptoms such as low mood, headache or brain-fog.

Although I personally have only ever tried piracetam and aniracetam (and found, despite a slight cognitive boost, that they both caused a slightly lowered mood, with piracetam being more stimulating and anxiety-prone while aniracetam was calm and relaxing), I haven’t read any complaints of fasoracetam and depression (on the contrary it appears to be a robust antidepressant nootropic, similar to tianeptine). This is remarkable because excessive acetylcholine production is typically associated with low mood and depression. Even with something as mild as bacopa, reports of moodiness are easy to pin down.

Since all three of the mentioned racetams seem to operate through a shared mechanism of acetylcholine, it’s not clear how fasoracetam achieves a similar cognitive boost without side effects on mood.  Perhaps it has been less trialed and as more users sample it, more negative reports will pour in.  This seems unlikely, however, given multiple reports of antidepressant effects, and at higher doses, near euphoria.

Fasoracetam and coluracetam are interesting racetams with multiple mechanisms of action compared to piracetam. Although they both share a cholinergic effect, the former modulates mGlu receptors (as well as GABA-B receptors) while the latter interacts with a process named high-affinity choline uptake.  This may explain their calm, clear effects when compared with the more bland effects of piracetam.


Of the eight known metabotropic glutamate receptors, only one and five are believed to increase NMDA receptor activity and neural excitation (these two are postsynaptic).  The other six receptors all function to lower NMDA (and are presynaptic), lessen excitation and thus reduce potential neurotoxicity.

By slightly lowering glutamate activity and at the same time boosting GABA-B levels, fasoracetam offers a collected state of mind compared to piracetam’s more scattered one.  Normal tasks would flow much easier, and performance would be improved without adverse effect.
While OCD and more recently schizophrenia have been described as hyperglutamatergic, ADHD has always been thought of as a condition of low glutamate.[12]

However, fasoracetam may very well regulate the metabotropic receptors in both directions and benefit everyone equally (restoring both high and low activity of the receptors to normal).

It is not clear how to explain the remarkable improvements reported in samples of both schizophrenia and ADHD. An explanation may be the selectiveness for the presynaptic mGluRs (mGluR1 and mGluR5) coupled with the fact that these receptors both elevate cAMP and lower NMDA activity. Levels of these receptors in the body are both altered in schizophrenia (so fasoracetam would produce two favorable alterations for the schizophrenic patient).

Despite all this fine talk about schizophrenia and glutamate, most of the reports surrounding fasoracetam are concerned with ADHD symptoms, specifically motivation and focus.  It is not widely known for its use as psychiatric medicine, and it may be considered by ADHD patients who have not responded well to conventional treatments. Again, it is not approved by the FDA as an ADHD treatment, and we are not suggesting people suffering from that disease to use it without a medical prescription.


As stated above fasoracetam appears to have GABA-B antagonistic properties[13], and it may upregulate these receptors and thus diminish the tolerance to GABA-B agonists like Phenibut, Baclofen, and Alcohol, and may even act as an “antidote” to a Phenibut overdose.

Before many of the newer designer supplements hit the market and much was known about fasoracetam, Noopept was one of the more recommended supplements for alcoholics to recover cognitive capacities. But in light of this newer evidence, fasoracetam may address the issue more directly. Because of its activity here, fasoracetam may eventually find use in treating age-related memory decline, dementia, and even depression. For now, the research and hype seem to surround the potential treatment of ADHD symptoms.

Dosage and half-life

Buy Fasoracetam CapsulesNo dependence potential was noted in the rhesus monkey over the course of four weeks.[14]  However. users cannot be completely absolved of concern, due to interspecies differences and the possibility of an only mildly addictive substance requiring an exceptionally long habituation period.

If its use is not completely discouraged in elderly patients, significant caution and close monitoring are recommended.  Its metabolism and clearance depend heavily on the kidneys and at least one studied has reported significant accumulation in the elderly (whose renal function is typically compromised).[15]

It is typically taken at 10mg twice daily, but it is probably best to start with 5 mg and taper up. Even though the dosage is very low, bitterness is still a problem and the use of capsules or parachuting is recommended.

Although some work their way up to 30 mg in one dose, this may not be the most effective strategy (due to a short half-life of the compound) and this pattern of use is more likely to be helped along by a large meal.  A potent nootropic with a half-life of around 90 minutes, taking it even once a day may be enough for active levels to build up in your system, but tolerance will be close behind.

You can buy Fasoracetam capsules and powder at Nootropics Depot. Fasoracetam is not approved by the FDA as an ADHD treatment.

Reviewer 8.8

References   [ + ]


Interview with Alan Glynn, the Man behind the ‘Limitless’ franchise

The 2011 film Limitless starring Bradley Cooper was a box office success, bringing in about $79 million in the United States and $157 million worldwide.[1] The film was popular enough to warrant a TV series on CBS of the same name.

Limitless has been foundational in launching nootropics and cognitive enhancers from an obscure subculture into a more public spotlight. The film’s premise revolves around struggling author Eddie Morra (Bradley Cooper) taking an experimental drug known as NZT-48 with hopes of it giving him an edge in his writing.

The film’s depiction of cognition-enhancing drugs even led to some in the media touting modafinil as the “real life Limitless drug.”[2] While there are no current nootropic drugs that will give one an edge even close to that of NZT-48, the film nonetheless sparked an interest in nootropics and biohacking among many viewers.

The film Limitless was based on the 2001 novel The Dark Fields by author Alan Glynn. While the film diverges from the book in a few areas of character and plot, the premises are much the same. We had the privilege of interviewing Alan on how the fame of Limitless has impacted his life, as well as his own personal opinions on nootropics, biohacking, and transhumanism – and where he sees these industries going as they rise in popularity.

Q: When you wrote The Dark Fields, did the thought of it being adapted into a Hollywood film and TV series ever cross your mind? How has life changed for you as a result of this exposure?

410NS6JMA2LA: When I was writing The Dark Fields in 1999/2000 I already had two unpublished novels in a drawer, so actually getting published was my main focus. The thought of three unpublished novels was pretty scary, so any notion of a film adaptation would have been strictly in the realm of fantasy. Getting accepted by a publisher that first time was a unique and unforgettable thrill because I wasn’t young anymore and there was never any guarantee that it was going to happen. Then, before the book even came out, it was optioned by Miramax, which was very exciting, too. But I’d been warned that it can be a slow process, and again with no guarantee that a movie would ever actually get made. One did, but it took almost ten years. The exposure since the movie happened has been great in terms of keeping my profile up with publishers and producers.

Q: What was the inspiration behind the book? Did you have any personal experience with cognitive enhancers / nootropics prior to writing the book?

A: The world of cognitive enhancers and nootropics has come a very long way indeed since 1999 and I certainly had no personal experience with them back then and was only vaguely aware of their existence. The terms “designer drug” and “smart drug” appealed to me for some reason and they fused in my mind with the idea of “performance enhancing drugs” in sport – which led to the question: what if there were performance enhancing drugs available for more cerebral or intellectual activities? This then linked in with big themes I’d always been interested in – the perfectibility of man and the Gatsby-like notion of the transformation or reinvention of the self, and how by the end of the twentieth century this human impulse had been reduced to a simple commodity, a pill. However, in writing the book, I also drew on experiences I’d had with psychedelics years earlier and this introduced a certain complexity or sense of mysteriousness to the proceedings. MDT-48 had the potential to be exploited and reduced to a commodity, but it also had an unknown, quasi-spiritual and possibly liberating aspect to it.

Q: Did you have any say in what direction the film Limitless took? Are you pleased with how it turned out in the end?

A: I had no real say in the direction Limitless took. However, all through the process, I was in touch with the screenwriter and co-producer of the movie, Leslie Dixon. She was a big fan of the book and she wanted me to be happy with how it turned out – which is extremely unusual in Hollywood. But with the kind of budget involved, not even Leslie had anything like full control, so it was inevitable that changes would be made that I might not be happy with. Ultimately, though, I was happy with the movie. For about forty minutes, it is very close to the book, which is thrilling to watch – shit you’ve made up in your head being reproduced meticulously on screen. But then the movie pretty much goes its own way, which is fine – and it couldn’t have ended the way the book ends, that was never going to happen in a studio movie. I like the movie’s ending, though. It’s ballsy and funny and true to a certain spirit of the book. I haven’t seen the TV series yet.

Q: Limitless has significantly contributed to the rise of nootropics and biohacking. What are your opinions on these trends? Do you believe that they will continue to grow in popularity?

limitlessA: Significantly? I wonder if that’s true. It’s certainly been amazing to watch this movement grow in the last few years. I do think that I just tapped into something that was already in the culture. A much bigger factor, I think, is the power of the internet to disseminate information and to bring people together who can talk about and share experiences – people who might otherwise never have connected. Podcasters like Tim Ferriss and Joe Rogan and others have fearlessly pushed the boundaries of what is possible in a public conversation. I think the renewal of research into the therapeutic possibilities of psychedelics and of micro-dosing is very positive and exciting, as are all the amazing (and very recent) discoveries about how the brain works. But I also think there is a huge potential here for exploitation. The snake oil salesmen you will have with you always, and these days snake oil is BIG business. And that’s because people simply love the idea of a short cut to change. If you can promise personal transformation in a commodity or a therapy or a system, you will always find willing takers. This is why The Dark Fields/Limitless appeals to so many people, and that is more what the book is about, I think than any specific chemical product or development in neuroscience.

Q: NZT/MDT 48 had detrimental side effects on Eddie in both the book and the movie. Do you feel like real-world cognitive enhancers in the future will carry these same risks?

A: The book more than the movie, I feel, is a traditional cautionary tale, a Faustian-pact story. Here’s all the knowledge in the world, but it’ll cost ya. The detrimental side effects are an inevitable consequence of the hubris of thinking you can transcend your human limits. But this is a story trope. It’s not science, it’s not pharmacology. In real-world science and pharmacology… I don’t know. I have no expertise or special knowledge about how this stuff works. I do know that MDT-48, as it is in the book, does not exist – and neither does the NZT in the movie, or the drug in Lucy, or the formula in Flowers for Algernon, or the elixir of youth in the 1952 Howard Hawks comedy Monkey Business. Nothing we have today comes anywhere close to any of this stuff. As far as I understand it, nootropics are subtle and most likely won’t be detectable if your lifestyle is anything other than a super-healthy one. Modafinil will keep you awake, but it won’t make you smarter. Neither will Adderall. As for side effects, I can’t imagine any truly powerful substance not having them – but this is just an opinion, and not one based on any direct experience or technical knowledge.

Q: Where do you stand on the “ethics” of people using cognitive enhancers in school and in their career fields?

A: I have no problem with people using cognitive enhancers. If we’re not going to ban coffee, then all bets are off. But I think there is a grey area here between so-called nutraceuticals and actual pharmaceuticals, and a further necessary distinction between school and career. I can’t help feeling that kids taking unregulated pharmaceuticals just to get better grades is a seriously bad idea and one that also highlights how fucked-up the education system is. For adults, it’s down to informed choice. But I also think we’re in a sort of early, Wild West phase of cognitive enhancement and that mistakes and missteps are inevitable. My fear is that this whole area is ripe for full-spectrum corporatization and that the current exciting, new-frontier​ feel of experimentation and liberation – as with the early days of the internet – will be reined in and brought to heel.

Q: The biohacking and transhumanist movement has led people to carry out risky experiments like implanting homemade technology (like microchips) in their own bodies. What is your opinion in regards to the transhumanist movement? Do you see it becoming a major industry in the near future?

If money can be made out of it, transhumanism will certainly become a major industry. But implanting homemade technology into one’s own body just sounds insane to me – and premature, a bit like trying to run before you can walk. I think that transhumanism expresses an understandable desire, or aspiration, to overcome what feel like annoying and unnecessary limitations – often physical or medical ones, and I’m all for that. But more widely, we seem to feel that the technology to transform completely is either there or we can see it coming, so why not just meet it head on? But where I see a problem is with technology itself and with our fundamental relationship to it. Because so far in history when a new technology comes along, we adapt to it – the new technology inevitably drives our behaviour, and any element of choice or human agency in this change of behaviour is usually illusory. So the Singularity, I feel, rather than being our great liberation, when it comes, could end up being a moment of ultimate human surrender. But what do I know? What’s certain is that the next fifty years of human development will be truly extraordinary.

Follow Alan Glynn on Twitter and check out his latest book “Graveland“.
His new novel “Paradime” will be out later this year.

References   [ + ]

Memantine Noopept Nootropics Phenylpiracetam Piracetam Pramiracetam

Best Nootropics for ADD & ADHD: 10 Alternatives to Adderall®

WARNING: The substances mentioned in this article are not approved by the FDA, we only list them for information purposes. They should NOT, and I repeat NOT, be used as replacements for a true and tested ADHD treatment. Our website and all the websites listed in this article are not responsible for errors, omissions, or for any outcomes related to the use of the contents of this article.

Attention Deficit Disorder with or without hyperactivity (ADD, ADHD) is one of the most commonly diagnosed disorders in children between 6 and 12 years of age. It is especially problematic for those attending school, as it adds an extra barrier that both students and teachers must overcome. There are various popular forms of medication in the amphetamine class used to treat these attention disorders. These medications are typically quite effective in alleviating attention deficits, but they carry with them the possibility of addiction and dependence.[1]

Attention Deficit Disorders

Two of the most commonly used drugs for the treatment of ADHD in children and adolescents are Adderall (amphetamine/dextroamphetamine) and Ritalin (methylphenidate).[2] Many people seek alternatives to classical stimulants because they know of potential adverse effects or want to avoid using potent phenethylamine derivatives on their own children or themselves. For this reason, we will investigate the potential benefits of nootropics in the treatment of attention disorders.

The most common nootropics that people use as alternatives to amphetamines are racetam drugs, modafinil and noopept. These nootropics have been demonstrated to have positive effects on cognition, but it is necessary to personalize treatment for each individual, evaluating if the course of treatment is actually working for them. It should be noted that the onset and duration of action of nootropics (as well as their effectiveness) can vary greatly. It would be wise to keep a journal where you take notes about the dosage and administration of nootropics you are using. Many nootropic drugs can take more than a week to establish their full effect, and dosages may need to be adjusted to achieve maximum effect.

Not all nootropics will ultimately be beneficial to those who suffer from attention deficits. However, many nootropics are well-known for their ability to improve cognition, motivation, and concentration.[3] Always consult your doctor before making adjustments to medication. Because most cognitive supplements and nootropics are stable and safe to use indefinitely, individuals who fear health risks or addiction to amphetamines may want to consider using nootropics as an alternative form of treatment.

Top 10 Nootropics for ADD & ADHD

These are the best nootropics for Attention Deficit Disorder with or without Hyperactivity, according to scientific studies and our anecdotal experience. As we frequently say in the nootropics community, your mileage may vary.


piracetam nootropic adhdPiracetam is considered by many to be the father of all nootropic drugs. It has a history of being used to treat dementia, Alzheimer’s Disease and other cognitive diseases that come with old age. Most research conducted on piracetam has come to the consensus that it does not have much effect on individuals who are not experiencing cognitive decline. For this reason, piracetam does not seem like an ideal alternative treatment for attention deficits. However, piracetam is extremely safe to take, and supplementation by anyone will help prevent cognitive decline before it even starts. Thus, it might be worthwhile to take piracetam alongside another medication on this list. One small study mentions a combination of atomoxetine (an ADHD medication) and Piracetam.[4][5]

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Noopept11Noopept is a favorite among nootropic users due to its ability to improve cognition and increase the ability to focus. Although it is not technically a racetam, due to the fact that it does not contain a pyrrolidone nucleus, it is still quite similar in structure and effects. Noopept is commonly touted as having an effective dose 1000 times smaller than that or piracetam.[6] There is not very much information out there about noopept as a treatment for ADD, but experts at the Second International Congress on ADHD noted that noopept may be a very good alternative medication for attention deficits.[7] Many anecdotal reports from users have found that noopept is helpful for maintaining focus and concentration for extended periods of time.

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Phenylpiracetam nootropic for adhdPhenylpiracetam is a derivative of piracetam that has an additional phenyl group. It is noticeably more stimulating than piracetam, as well as more potent. An 800 mg dose of piracetam is comparable to about 100 mg of phenylpiracetam. It has been found to be effective at improving cognition and produces stimulation that may translate to improved focus.[8][9] One drawback of phenylpiracetam is that it cannot be used indefinitely, as tolerance develops relatively quickly. However, this might make it useful to cycle with another nootropic compound, or to use a few times a week alongside something else like noopept.

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pramistar-nootropic-pramiracetamPramiracetam is another derivative of piracetam. It is not as well researched as some of the more popular racetams, but it has a lot of potential as a cognitive enhancer. While there is no research that specifically addresses the issue of attention in the traditional sense, pramiracetam demonstrated and ability to help reverse scopolamine-induced attention deficits in humans[10], and anecdotal experiences on the web show that it’s effective in young subjects with ADD, but not in those with normal “baseline” performance. Even though pramiracetam still needs to see more research before anything definitive can be said, the fact that it is considered safe to use opens up the possibility of personal experimentation.

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Memantine NootropicMemantine is another drug commonly used to treat cognitive decline, such as moderate and severe Alzheimer’s Disease. Memantine works on the glutamatergic system as an antagonist to NMDA receptors, which works to combat excitotoxicity. One of the benefits of Memantine is that it avoid the development of tolerance to a number of substances, including stimulants, caffeine, cannabis, alcohol and so on. It is therefore frequently combined with stimulants to reduce their neurotoxic effects as well as reducing tolerance to the positive effects of Adderall and Ritalin. Some research has been done on memantine’s possible effectiveness in treating ADHD (by itself, not in combination). One study found that memantine was fairly beneficial for alleviating symptoms of ADHD, but concluded that there is not enough evidence to draw any real conclusions.[11] Because of this, memantine could be a good choice to use in low doses alongside another substance on this. It must be noted that memantine acts as a dissociative at supratherapeutic doses, so proceed with caution.

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provigil-modafinilModafinil is a wakefulness-promoting (eugeroic) drug that is classified in many places as a prescription medication. Armodafinil, a closely related drug, consists of only the active (−)-(R)-enantiomer of modafinil, meaning it is theoretically more potent. Because of this, both drugs work in a similar fashion. Modafinil has shown a good amount of promise as an alternative treatment of ADD/ADHD. One study conducted on children found that 48% of the participants felt a significant improvement in attentive skills while on modafinil.[12] Multiple other studies have found that modafinil provides moderate increases in cognition, memory, and motivation.[13] Although modafinil’s mechanism works through modulation of dopamine, it does not seem to carry an addiction potential to the same degree as amphetamines.

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selegiline adhd nootropicSelegiline (L-deprenyl) is a substituted phenethylamine drug commonly used to treat Parkinson’s disease and dementia. It has also seen some use as an alternative treatment for depression. There has not been a significant amount of research done on its efficacy in treating ADHD, but one study done on a small group of 28 children with ADHD studied the treatment effects of selegiline in comparison to methylphenidate. The children treated with selegiline displayed fewer symptoms of ADHD than those treated with methylphenidate while also displaying fewer side effects.[14] This research is preliminary, but it demonstrates the selegiline displays promise as an ADHD treatment.

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These supplements are not strong enough to treat ADD/ADHD on their own, but they can potentiate and work synergistically with the nootropic drugs mentioned above.


acetylcholineCholine is an essential nutrient and precursor to acetylcholine that can be obtained in various ways in different foods. However, the easiest way to consume ideal amounts of choline is through a supplement. CDP-Choline and Alpha GPC are generally considered to be the two most effective sources of choline for nootropic use. Because racetam drugs and noopept work through modulation of acetylcholine, taking them alongside a choline source can make them more effective.

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L-Tyrosine is an amino acid that acts as a precursor to the neurotransmitters noradrenaline and dopamine. One study found that supplementation of both Tyrosine and 5-HTP (a serotonin precursor) helped improve ADHD symptoms in 77% of the participants.[15] Taking these supplements can help improve attention deficits by increasing levels of neurotransmitters that play a significant role in attention. Tyrosine should be taken on an empty stomach to prevent it from competing for absorption with other amino acids found in food.

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uridineUridine is a nucleotide base that has been found to improve memory, attentiveness, cognition, and learning.[16] The majority of uridine’s cognitive benefits appear to occur with its supplementation alongside other nootropics, such as racetams and noopept. It is considered a safe substance to combine with other nootropics and medications. Although uridine can be found naturally in liver, fish, and beer, it is most commonly supplemented through a uridine compound like uridine monophosphate or triacetyluridine.

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There are many nootropics, pharmaceuticals, and supplements that show significant promise for treating attention deficits. These substances are definitely worth looking into for those who are wary of amphetamines and the side effects and addictive potential they entail. In the end, the efficacy of each of these substances will vary between each individual and cautious experimentation will maximize the potential of finding an effective treatment regimen.

References   [ + ]

1. What is Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD, ADD)?
2. Methylphenidate
3. Gouliaev, A. H., & Senning, A. (1994). Piracetam and other structurally related nootropics. Brain Research Reviews, 19(2), 180–222.
4. Zavadenko, N. N., & Suvorinova, N. I. (2008). [Atomoxetine and piracetam in the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in children]. Zhurnal Nevrologii I Psikhiatrii Imeni S.S. Korsakova / Ministerstvo Zdravookhraneniia I Meditsinskoi Promyshlennosti Rossiiskoi Federatsii, Vserossiiskoe Obshchestvo Nevrologov [i] Vserossiiskoe Obshchestvo Psikhiatrov, 108(7), 43–47.
5. Baumgaertel, a. (1999). Alternative and controversial treatments for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Pediatric Clinics of North America, 46(5), 977–992.
6. [The original novel nootropic and neuroprotective agent noopept].
7. Thome, J., & Reddy, D. P. (2009). The current status of research into Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: Proceedings of the 2nd International Congress on ADHD: From Childhood to Adult Disease. Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorders, 1(2), 165–74.
8. Piracetam and piracetam-like drugs: from basic science to novel clinical applications to CNS disorders.
9. Investigation into stereoselective pharmacological activity of phenotropil.
10. Pramiracetam effects on scopolamine-induced amnesia in healthy volunteers.
11. Memantine: a review of possible uses in child and adolescent psychiatry.
12. Efficacy and safety of modafinil film-coated tablets in children and adolescents with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder: results of a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, flexible-dose study.
13. Modafinil
14. Selegiline in the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in children: a double blind and randomized trial
15. Treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder with monoamine amino acid precursors and organic cation transporter assay interpretation
16. Cognitex supplementation in elderly adults with memory complaints: an uncontrolled open label trial.
Biohacking Cognitive Health

The Shocking Truth about tDCS and its Effects

Developed as an answer to the problem of brain injuries and certain mental illnesses, tDCS has truly made an 180° turn, heading towards a place no one could have ever predicted. For decades, it has been used as a last resort to help patients suffering from mental illnesses. It has also proven to be a highly efficient method in helping stroke patients regain control over their mental functions, including walking and talking. But its recent application as a cognitive enhancer tool has created a stir in the field of neuroscience. In the attempt to pinpoint the exact effect tDCS has on our mental powers, we have to start from the beginning: the brain.

Your Brain in the Fast Lane!

Arguably the most complex organ in the human body, the brain has baffled scientists for centuries. Aside from a few things we have learned, like its size, shape and consistency, much about it is still unknown and undiscovered. The workings of the brain are still as much of a mystery as they were a hundred years ago. What we do know is that its founding blocks, impulse-conducted cells, make up only about 10% of it, and the glia (the glue that binds the neurons together) makes up as much as 90%. It all looks a lot like a highway, with millions and millions of lanes – pathways, each going in different directions. The pathways, or synapses, are the brain’s response to outer stimuli. These pathways get created whenever a person learns something new – a language, sport, how to tie a shoelace, etc. This superpower that our brain has of creating new synapses whenever we are exposed to new stimuli is something called plasticity, and it is directly proportional to the number of synapses the brain has. The more synapses there are, the higher the plasticity of the brain. How fast you learn a second language, master a new skill, solve a math problem, etc. depends not only on the number of neurons you have but also on your brain’s plasticity.

Some simple math here: number of neurons + brain’s plasticity = degree of intelligence

Studies have shown that the higher the number of neurons and synapses you have, the higher your IQ will be.
And while the number of neurons is not something we can change (it’s written in our genetics), the plasticity of the brain is actually something we can control – through constant stimulation, or being exposed to new situations, problems, and difficulties. This often requires quite a bit of effort, and, what’s even more important: time.
But, there seems to be a shortcut to the whole story, in the form of tDCS. An electrifying shortcut indeed!

back to the future tdcs

tDCS as an outer stimulus

Studies conducted on tDCS have shown that stimulating a certain part of the brain through very low-level currents of up to 2mA, can cause an “excitability” of the brain in healthy individuals. This excitability of the brain is seen as a number of cortical changes that can last even after the stimulation is done. How long the changes last is directly linked to how long an individual has been exposed to a stimulus, the number of tDCS sessions, as well as the intensity of the stimulus.

There are two types of changes that tDCS can cause: depolarization or hyperpolarization. Namely, when the anodal tDCS is conducted, which is positive stimulation, the resting membrane potential depolarizes. This, in turn, increases the neuronal excitability and allows for more spontaneous cell firing. On the other hand, when cathodal tDCS is performed, which is negative stimulation, the resting membrane potential gets hyper-polarized, thus decreasing spontaneous cell firing, a.k.a. neuron excitability.

tDCS takes advantage of two concepts, LTP and LTD. Long-term potentiation (LTP) refers to the strengthening the connection between two neurons. LTD, or long-term depression, refers to the weakening of the same connection, thus causing the transmission between two neurons to be enhanced or hindered.


One of the studies conducted on a group of 60 participants researched the effects of tDCS on creativity. Test participants were given a number of everyday objects, such as a baseball bat, for which they needed to come up with another use (for example, using that bat as a rolling pin). Thinking about unconventional uses of simple everyday objects requires “thinking outside the box”, which requires thinking about the size and material of the object as well as eliminating the usual things that the object is used for. This all required a high level of creativity.
The participants were presented with 60 different objects, one every nine seconds. The researchers noted down the answers, the lack of answers, as well as the time it took the participants to come up with an answer.
The study showed that the participants who received tDCS to their left prefrontal cortex didn’t know 8 answers on average. Those who received placebo or tDCS to their right prefrontal cortex missed about 15 answers out of 60. The group whose left prefrontal cortex was inhibited through tDCS was also faster in coming up with the answers – a whole one second quicker than the other two groups, which is a lot when it comes to psychological research, as the director of Penn’s Center for Cognitive Neuroscience and lead researcher Sharon Thompson-Schill concluded.

Another study on the stimulation of the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex in patients with depression showed that 48% of participants responded well to the treatment. They received tDCS every weekday, 30 treatments in total. A majority of them noted a substantial difference in their cognitive powers, i.e. better working memory and verbal fluency.

A number of studies suggest that tDCS may improve learning, vigilance, intelligence, and working memory. However, many of these studies have been small and heterogeneous, and meta-analyses have failed to prove conclusive effects, and long-term risks have not been established. Consequently, the F.D.A. does not regulate the use of tDCS.

tDCS-distributing machine

brain_types_directcurrentA tDCS – DTC (direct-to-consumer) device consists of a main operating unit, one battery, and two electrodes: an anode and cathode with conductive sponges that can be applied to the head, held in place with a band. The principle behind it is to place the electrodes on brain regions of interest on the skull and let the low-level direct current induce intracerebral current flow which will either decrease or increase excitability of the neurons. The treatment lasts twenty to thirty minutes with the current level individually adjusted, but limited to a maximum of 2mA.

The specific placement of the electrodes is called a montage based on the “10-20 International System of Electrode Placement”. This is a mapping point for the brain with coordinates that point to specific regions of the brain. Montages vary, depending on what effects the individual would like to have. For a comprehensive list of possible montages as well as links to the studies conducted for various conditions, like mood improvement, accelerated learning, pain management, working memory improvement, etc. please check this article, which also contains brain electrode placement maps for your reference.

Should you or shouldn’t you?

Though tDCS has taken the world of neuroscience by storm, it is not the only place of its application. Scientists are not the only ones intrigued by it. Army and military forces are currently conducting many experiments in the hope that one day they’ll be able to create a “super soldier” – one with the heightened concentration, improved cognitive powers, and enhanced working memory.
So, the final question of whether to supercharge the brain or not is completely left to the reader, but with the benefits heavily outweighing the drawbacks, it seems only logical that there are many potential benefits to tDCS use.

One thing is for certain, tDCS should not be dismissed so easily! It is definitely one form of treatment that will shape our future.