A short intro to Noopept
Nootropics are supplements used in enhancing cognitive performance. These drugs are used for improving memory, creativity, learning, focus, and concentration. Some of them are also effective for mood enhancement, so they also double up as useful remedies for stress, anxiety, and depression.
While some nootropics are made of natural ingredients, others are formulated with synthetic compounds. Both of them seem to target the same pathways in the brain. However, natural nootropics are believed to be safer than the synthetic alternative.
Noopept is an example of a synthetic nootropic. It has been linked to a wide variety of benefits, some of which go beyond boosting cognition. But, is it safe? More importantly, should you use it?
What is Noopept?
Noopept is a synthetic nootropic with neuroprotective properties. The drug was first developed in the mid-1990s in Russia for preventing cognitive decline in seniors. From the decent results that were observed, some people started exploring its efficacy for enhancing cognitive functions. A few studies were done on the same subject, some of which reported promising results. They actually pointed out that it produced similar effects as the popular Piracetam. Even more interesting, they pointed out that Noopept was over 1000 times more powerful than Piracetam!
Some people started using the drug for boosting brain performance, and they reported great results. Also, other than improved brain functions, some users experienced mood enhancement.
Noopept is legal but unregulated in the United States. It’s available on different online stores, and you won’t need a doctor’s prescription to get the drug.
How Does Noopept Work?
Just like other nootropics, the exact working mechanism of Noopept remains blurry. There is not enough clinical data to show how these drugs work. Also, let’s not forget how complex the brain is.
However, based on the little available research, scientists believe that Noopept affects the brain’s performance in several ways.
Initial animal studies suggest that supplementation with Noopept increases Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) and Nerve Growth Factor (NGF). The increase was especially significant in the hypothalamus and the hippocampus. These neurotrophin proteins are vital for enhanced memory and several other brain functions. Sadly, we don’t have reliable human trials to prove that the same effect can be replicated on humans.
Another study reported that Noopept regulates the activities of the neurotransmitter called glutamate. It does so by modulating activities of the AMPA and NDMA receptors. And how is this useful? Well, unregulated glutamate levels can result in toxicity, which causes neuronal damage. By modulating AMPA and NDMA receptors, Noopept also improves neuroplasticity, and this improves the formation of long-term memories. Besides maintaining healthy glutamate levels, it also eliminates excess calcium and improves blood flow in the brain.
Noopept has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. These are very crucial in protecting cells – including brain cells – against free radicals as well as chronic inflammation. This explains why the drug is believed to be a great neuroprotectant.
Several other theories are trying to explain how Noopept works. Some claim that it boosts neural response to the vital neurotransmitter known as acetylcholine, while others claim that it increases alpha and beta brain waves. The problem is all the theories are based on either animal or vitro tests. Let’s hope in the near future we will see more reliable human trials that can shed some light on how exactly Noopept works.
Uses and Benefit of Noopept
- Improving Memory and Learning
This is the most popular benefit of Noopept. It was, after all, developed to slow down cognitive decline. According to scientists, Noopept boosts memory and learning by improving information processing, consolidation, and extraction.
Noopept’s effects on cognitive functions have been reported on a few studies involving subjects with brain damage or ones experiencing cognitive decline. The good news is that the use of Noopept produced good results. The bad news is we don’t have a study investigating the same on healthy humans. Therefore, we cannot shake off the possibility that Noopept is only useful for this purpose in sick subjects and that healthy individual cannot benefit from it. At least not in terms of enhanced memory and learning ability.
- Treating Symptoms of Neurodegenerative Disorders
We have already pointed out that Noopept is a powerful neuroprotectant thanks to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Maybe you do not know this, but neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s disease are partly as a result of oxidative damage. Therefore, by protecting the cells and tissues, Noopept helps to slow down the progression of these diseases.
The drug also slows neurological damage and toxicity by regulating glutamate and calcium levels while enhancing blood flow to keep the brain nourished.
Also, since the drug has been shown to improve learning and memory, it’s possible that it will reverse the cognitive decline effects experienced by Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease patients.
- Relieving Stress and Anxiety
Noopept’s ability to treat anxiety has been reported in both animal and human studies. However, the human studies where this was observed were carried out on subjects who had mild cognitive disorders. Therefore, it’s not clear whether the same effects can be produced in healthy people.
What are the Side Effects of Noopept?
One of the biggest challenges with under-studied drugs is there is never enough data to show the possible short and long term effects of using it. This leaves the buyers in the dark, especially when it comes to possible long-term side effects.
Based on the studies that are available and anecdotal evidence, Noopept seems to be a well-tolerated drug. Many people have used it without reporting any serious adverse reactions. That doesn’t make it 100% safe though. We’ve come across several users complaining of issues such as dizziness, headaches, fatigue, restlessness, and irritability.
The side effects can get worse if one is using high doses of the drug. For instance, short-term memory impairment has been linked to the abuse of Noopept.
Pregnant and lactating women are advised against using Noopept. Other individuals with kidney, liver, and high blood pressure issues are also discouraged from using the drug unless a licensed medical practitioner gives them the green light.
The general rule when it comes to using unapproved nootropics is to start with the lowest doses possible. This is vital in reducing the risk of your body, reacting negatively to the chemical.
With that in mind, the recommended dose of Noopept is between 10 to 30mg per day. So, in this case, a new user should start with just 10mg per day. You can experiment with this dose for some time before you start increasing it. Remember, you should only increase the dose if you are reacting well to the drug.
Noopept should be cycled to ensure that your body does not build a tolerance to the compound. Experts recommend that you cycle Noopept for 1.5 or 3 months while taking a 1-month break between each cycle. You should cycle Noopept for just 1.5 months if it’s your first time using it.
Can I Stack Noopept with Other Nootropics?
Yes, you can. Noopept is popularly stacked with other supplements such as Pracetemam, Choline, Aniracetam, Sulbutiamine, and even Mind Lab Pro. Stacking Noopept helps in optimizing the results. The combination also introduces new benefits. However, stacks should be used carefully as they can lead to severe complications.
An example of a beneficial stack would be 10mg of Noopept and 2 capsules of Mind Lab Pro taken either once or twice per day. Whether you will take it once or twice will depend on your tolerance to the stack and the results you are looking for.
Another potential stack is 10mg Noopept, 300mg Alpha GPC, and 2g Piracetam. This stack not only improves the result, but the presence of a choline supplement can actually reduce the risk of side effects such as headaches.
Stacks can be very overwhelming, so it’s wise to use them cautiously. Watch the doses carefully and if you notice any adverse reactions, stop using the supplements immediately.
Even though the number of human trials on Noopept is limited, the little data that is available is very promising. Anecdotal evidence goes further to show how beneficial the drug is. Trials have reported that it is 1000 times more potent than Piracetam! They’ve also shown that Noopept is not just a good cognitive enhancer, but it actually has neuroprotectant properties. For such reasons, we believe that Noopept is worth considering, but don’t forget to practice caution when buying and using it.