Nootropics, also known as “smart drugs”, became fairly popular among students looking to improve their capacity for learning. They worked so great, that the fitness community quickly caught up on the trend.
Nootropics increase cognitive function and mental clarity in the short term by influencing various neurotransmitters in the brain and allowing it to communicate more effectively with the rest of the body. Although studies have shown that these non-toxic substances can help improve cognitive performance in people who suffer from Parkinson’s and Huntington’s disease, there is little research on the effect of long-term use of nootropics in healthy individuals.
Nevertheless, in recent years, the smart drugs have gained popularity within the bodybuilding community as well – some competitive bodybuilders use them to stay maximally focused and perform better on stage, while others use them before regular workouts to increase muscle control and endurance and ultimately lift more weight.
Do they really work?
Better than you’d imagine.
If you thought that athletes can only benefit from supplementing protein and creatine, think again. The brain is responsible for pretty much everything that happens in your body, including movement. The healthier your brain is, the more effective his work will be. For the athlete, that means increased concentration, faster reflexes and a better performance. In the same way, nootropics can enhance your brain function and allow you to customize it so that it serves your immediate needs, improving your focus, mood and energy levels.
The most famous of the bunch is acetyl-L-carnitine (ALCAR), a naturally occurring amino acid that comes with a plethora of powerful effects based on its ability to encourage brain cells to create more connections to other neurons. The benefits from ALCAR supplementation include increased physical and mental energy that lasts for several hours, improved cognitive processing speed, attention span, focus, memory and verbal fluency, improved mood and increased learning rate. Therefore, it’s no surprise that ALCAR has been proven as highly effective in the treatment of depressive disorders and Alezheimer’s disease. We still don’t know exactly how this amino acid does its work in the body, but studies have so far shown that it energizes the mind by directly enhancing neural transmission by means of synaptic stimulation, while also influencing the production of neurotransmitters that regulate brain function and mood, such as norepinephrine and serotonine.
And the best part is that you can safely combine ALCAR with other nootropics such as theanine, piracetam and choline bitartrate in order to get the most out of each one of them. A good nootropics combo will improve the amount, quality and speed of connections between different parts of the brain, increase the amount of oxygen being deliver to cells and enhance the connection between the brain and muscles. In other words, not only that you’ll be able to get in the ‘zone’ faster and execute every single rep with laser focus, but you’ll be able to train harder, better and longer and get more results than ever, with almost zero side effects.
Have you tried nootropics? Got any favorite stacks? Hit us with your comments in the section below!