Say it with us, “nootropics!” Forget that name already? Well, you might need some of these mind-bending supplements for yourself. Why? Nootropics are substances or foods that could be the key to better memory, focus, and creativity! Sometimes called “smart drugs,” these supplements and foods can range from Adderall to a fried egg–so what’s all the hype and what should you know? Let’s dive in!
A nootropic is defined as any substance that “enhances cognition and memory and facilitates learning.” If you’re tired of reading about wellness trends that seem unattainable and expensive, you’re in luck. If you consume coffee, tea, eggs, or olive oil –you’re already consuming nootropics. For lack of a better term, nootropics are nature’s Adderall, although confusingly Adderall is a nootropic itself. Let’s talk about some of the most popular non-food nootropic supplements…
A Dose of Nootropics
Like we mentioned, technically Adderall is considered a nootropic, but nootropics don’t have to be addicting. Consider trying artichoke extract that can help you with memory, focus, and learning. L-theanine can promote “calm alertness, reaction time and mental endurance.” Struggling with paying attention or bad moods? Try Bacopa Monnieri, a plant native to India with properties that can help you deal with stress and enhance mood. Many products leverage a blend of nootropics to deliver the most benefits. Sound too good to be true? Read on…
Nootropics’ strength and potency fall on a spectrum. The word “Nootropic” was coined in 1972 by a Romanian scientist, Corneliu Giurgea, who combined the Greek words for “mind” and “bending.” Of course, like all supplements, most nootropics aren’t regulated by the FDA so it’s important to consult a doctor and monitor your reaction when adding a new supplement. Some nootropics can be equally beneficial for brain function but have been reported to trigger depression or other negative side effects in some individuals. Our point is, most nootropics are likely harmless, but with a fresh nootropic to try every day and unlimited online access: we’re skeptical of blending our own supplement cocktail without speaking to a professional. Registered dietician, Kamalini Mukerjee, put it best when she said, “just because it’s natural doesn’t mean it’s safe.”
What this Means for Brands
We all want to up our professional, athletic and creative game, but sometimes we risk flying too close to the sun to reach an elevated state of mind. We know consumers are increasingly aware of ingredients and transparency, we feel the same skepticism can and should be applied to the supplement industry. As the clear-labeling movement continues to gain strength, we predict that transparency will become a requirement in the supplement industry in the near future.
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