With nootropic popularity skyrocketing more than before, skeptics and enthusiastic supporters alike are wondering the same question; are the benefits being touted by many actually backed by science?
A quick search of the Internet will reveal support for both sides of the debate. However, it’s simple to see that when it comes to nootropics, though there hasn’t been extensive research completed, that which has confirms the countless benefits nootropics users expect.
Is the Idea Behind Nootropics Plausible? Research Says Yes
Nootropics are part of a category of drugs known as performance and image enhancing drugs (PIED). This category of drugs is known to enhance everything from memory and cognition (which is the specific role of nootropics) as well as athletic performance and sexual performance too.
For the interest of this article, we’re only concerned with the idea of nootropics as beneficial for memory and cognition. And to be sure, research reveals it’s likely that specific chemicals can target metabolic or nutritional components of the brain functions to enhance functioning in particular areas (whether in neurotransmitters, neurons, synaptic connections, or otherwise).
While most of the research conducted on nootropics is on their ability to improve memory functioning in individuals with Alzheimer’s disease or other medical conditions, additional research on healthy individuals shows great promise. This is particularly true of sought-after benefits such as improved learning and memory performance, protection against cell damage, and the ability to maintain task focus.
A Sample of Established and Recent Studies Reveals the Multitude of Promised Benefits in Action
From 1972 to as recently as 2015, nootropics have been clinically tested and confirmed for their positive benefits. In fact, emerging research continues to confirm both the present and future preventative benefits of the supplements, making them ideal for young, middle-aged, and elderly users alike.
Much of the early research focused on racetams and in particular Piracetam, with more recent study focusing on “smart drugs”. However there are also a number of studies into natural nootropics ingredients.
For example, a 1999 study on huperzine-A, a key ingredient in NooCube, reveals that after being given huperzine for 4 weeks, young adolescents demonstrated improved learning and memory performance when compared to placebo groups. Another study from 2011 revealed that l-tyrosine, an amino acid, improved cognitive flexibility (i.e. the ability to switch between thinking of one concept to another) when compared to a placebo population.
Many potential nootropic users do so for the preventative or treatment benefits as well. Substances like Cat’s Claw have been found to destroy different types of free radicals in the body, preventing cell damage that can cause cognitive disease or premature aging. Some other nootropics, such as Alpha GPC, have been found as recently as 2013 to provide consistent improvements for Alzheimer’s patients on cognitive tests after taking the substance just three times daily for 180 days.
Additional research continues to emerge regarding these demonstrated benefits, amongst others. This convinces new individuals each day to create a nootropic stack for their own use.
Final Thoughts: Research Supports the Use of Nootropics in Both Healthy and Unhealthy Individuals
According to both research and common belief, nootropics hold promise for improved cognitive functioning. And with a growing body of research to back it up, there is great reason to explore the use of nootropics for your own benefit.
In consideration of existing research, it appears nootropics are most useful in treating neurological disease and repairing damage to the brain. In addition, there is much to be said about increased cognitive performance both in healthy adolescents and cognitively declining elderly individuals as well.
When combined with healthy habits such as proper sleep, exercise, and diet, nootropics are thought by many to be an effective way to improve mental functioning, no matter your age or current mental state.
And with the right research into which types of nootropics best suit your needs, you’ll soon have the ideal stack to elevate your cognitive functioning and maintain brain health for years to come.