Brain Supplements – Best Brain Foods

Your brain is kind of a big deal.

As the control center of your body, it’s in charge of keeping your heart beating and lungs breathing and allowing you to move, feel and think.

That’s why it’s a good idea to keep your brain in peak working condition.

The foods you eat play a role in keeping your brain healthy and can improve specific mental tasks, such as memory and concentration.

This article lists 11 foods that boost your brain.

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Aniracetam Capsules & Powder

Aniracetam is a nootropic compound in the racetams group.

  • Aniracetam (1-P-Anisoyl-2-Pyrrolidinone) is an organic compound in the class of benzoic acids and derivatives.  It interacts between the serotonergic, dopaminergic and cholinergic systems 
  • Synthesized to be fat soluble (ref)*:  Fat-soluble compounds can access the brain via the blood-brain-barrier 
  • Assured Purity: Rigorously tested for quality & purity by third-party Certificate of Analysis*

    Aniracetam Chemical Properties

    Aniracetam is an AMPAkine  which means it modulates the AMPA receptors in the hippocampus (the part of the brain associated with learning and memory) by providing quick, excitatory transmission between synapses.  AMPA receptors interact with the glutamate neurotransmitters in the brain and lengthen the amount of time the synaptic channel is open between communicating neurons. The ability of the glutamate neurotransmitters to transmit and communicate between the synapses of neurons is then enhanced. This long-term potentiation of synaptic communication is a helpful mechanism for enhanced learning and memory (5)*.

    Aniracetam’s molecular formula is C12H13NOand it has a molecular mass of 219.24 g/mol.

    Aniracetam is also known as 1-P-Anisoyl-2-Pyrrolidinone and the CAS Number is 72432-10-1 (1).

    The general systemic bioavailability is 0.2% (3).

    The elimination half-life is 35 minutes (2) and the biological half-life is 1-2.5 hours (1).

    Aniracetam Capsules

    Pure Nootropics offers Aniracetam in 750 mg capsules in both 30 and 60 count bottles.

    Bulk powder is available in 75 gram and 200 gram quantities.

    Aniracetam Toxicity

    In preclinical safety data, Aniracetam was very well tolerated in the animal model consisting of mice, rats, rabbits, and dogs.  Both single and consecutive doses were administered.  At extremely high doses, the side effects were found to generally minor (6).  A lethal dose in rats was 4.5 g/kg and 5 g/kg in mice, which works out to be approximately 500 or more times the standard dose of the 1.5 g dose a human would normally consume. Therefore, it is extremely hard to achieve toxicity with Aniracetam (4). 

    For further information, please see our References Tab above.

    Notice: This product is a chemical compound. All chemicals have risks. This product is not approved by the FDA. Please research and understand the associated risks before handling. None of the information provided in our references are meant to be considered comprehensive or representative of the entire body of research on this compound. Please consult a qualified professional if you are unsure of how to handle this chemical. Misuse of this product may result in adverse reactions.

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Oxiracetam Capsules & Powder

Oxiracetam is a nootropic compound in the racetams group.

  • Oxiracetam (4-hydroxy-2-oxopyrrolidin-1-yl) is an organooxygen and organonitrogen compound. It is a derivative of an alpha amino acid. 
  • Synthesized in 1974 
  • Assured Purity: Rigorously tested for quality & purity by third-party Certificate of Analysis*

Oxiracetam Chemical Properties

Oxiracetam’s molecular formula is  C6H10N2O3 and it has a molar mass of 158.157 g/mol.

It is also known as also known as ISF-2522 and the CAS number is 68567-97-5 (1).

The bioavailability in humans indicates peak plasma concentrations approximately 68-75% (3) with an elimination of 90% excretion in urine in 24 hours (3).

Data suggests Oxiracetam’s half-life is 6.8-8.5 hours (4).

Oxiracetam Capsules and Powder

Pure Nootropics offers Oxiracetam in 750 mg capsules (bulk powder option also available).

Oxiracetam Toxicity

In mice and rat toxicity studies, the LD50 values were both not less than 10g/kg (4).

For further information, please see our References Tab above.

Notice: This product is a chemical compound. All chemicals have risks. This product is not approved by the FDA. Please research and understand the associated risks before handling. None of the information provided in our references are meant to be considered comprehensive or representative of the entire body of research on this compound. Please consult a qualified professional if you are unsure of how to handle this chemical. Misuse of this product may result in adverse reactions.

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Noopept Powder, Capsules, & Sublingual Solution

Noopept is a synthetic nootropic molecule grouped in the racetam class but structurally different from racetams.

  • Noopept (N-phenylacetyl-L-prolylglycine ethyl ester) lacks a 2-oxo-pyrollidine nucleus that a true racetam is defined by 
  • Synthesized in 1996 
  • Assured Purity: Rigorously tested for quality & purity by third-party Certificate of Analysis*

Noopept Chemical Properties

In animal research, Noopept may increase alpha waves in the brain similarly to the function of Piracetam; however, Noopept also increases beta waves and decreases delta waves.  In animals, Noopept is believed to work with acetylcholine and neurotrophin in the brain, although it is not entirely understood (1).

Noopept’s molecular formula is C17H22N2O4 and it has a molecular mass of 318.373 g/mol (2).

It is also known as GVS-111 and the CAS number is 157115-85-0 (2).

Noopept Powder, Capsules and Sublingual

Pure Nootropics offers Noopept in 20 mg capsules or 15 g bulk powder quantities or 60 ml sublingual preparation.

Noopept Toxicity

In mice, doses of 10-100 mg/kg did not induce any irreversible toxic changes (3).

For further information, please see our References Tab above.

Notice: This product is a chemical compound. All chemicals have risks. This product is not approved by the FDA. Please research and understand the associated risks before handling. None of the information provided in our references are meant to be considered comprehensive or representative of the entire body of research on this compound. Please consult a qualified professional if you are unsure of how to handle this chemical. Misuse of this product may result in adverse reactions.

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Optimal Choline Complex

Pure Nootropics’ Optimal Choline Complex combines two products to provide superior results. The two main ingredients are CDP Choline and Alpha GPC Choline.

Pure Nootropics’ Optimal Choline Complex combines two products to provide superior results. The two main ingredients are CDP Choline and Alpha GPC Choline. Both CDP Choline and Alpha GPC are essential nutrients which are precursors to acetylcholine. Acetylcholine is a neurotransmitter in the parts of the brain that impact memory and learning, attention, and alertness–making it one of the most beneficial neurotransmitter compounds for overall cognitive function and brain health (1).

Optimal Choline Complex Benefits

1)  CDP Choline (also known as citicoline) is an essential nutrient and precursor to creating the neurotransmitter acetylcholine (1).

Some benefits of CDP Choline include: 

  • Supports cognitive function in the elderly 
  • May improve attentional performance 
  • May limit excitotoxicity from glutamate activity 
  • Promotes an increase in brain energy through improved mitochondrial function

2) Alpha GPC Choline, an abbreviation for Alpha-glycerylphosphorylcholine, is also a cholinergic compound found in the brain and a precursor to creating acetylcholine, functioning similarly to CDP Choline in acetylcholine synthesis. Alpha GPC provides some additional advantages by increasing acetylcholine in the central nervous system and seems to be the more efficient choline precursor because of its bioavailability (2).

Some benefits of Alpha GPC include:

  • Supports cognitive function in the elderly with high doses more significantly than CDP Choline 
  • May increase the production of the human growth hormone (HGH or somatropin) by working with the pituitary gland
  • Promotes increases in strength outputs during resistance training workouts 
  • May enhance lower body muscle performance 
  • May provide a steadier level of choline in the body than with CDP Choline 

Optimal Choline Complex Mode of Action

Citicoline and Alpha GPC are both involved as acetylcholine precursors. Both cholinergics combine to provide superior cognitive support in Optimal Choline Complex.

Citicoline can be produced from choline already present in the body, but choline’s ability to engage in cell membrane formation (phospholipid synthesis) is incomplete without first being converted to Citicoline.  This constant demand for choline conversion to citicoline can mean that supplementing with Citicoline itself provides a boost for overall cell functioning (1).

Choline supports memory and cognitive function and can possibly maintain overall wellness in the brain when faced with cognitive decline (2).  CDP Choline may improve attentional performance and focus (3,4).  While CDP Choline is found in dietary sources such as animal-based products, eggs, whole grains, cruciferous vegetables, nuts and seeds, most people don’t get an adequate intake of choline in their diet (1).

Being a choline, Alpha GPC is found in many of the same dietary sources that contain CDP Choline (animal-based products, eggs, whole grains, cruciferous vegetables, nuts, and seeds) and is also a nutrient that is difficult to reach an adequate level from diet alone (1).

By working directly with the pituitary gland, Alpha GPC may increase the production of the human growth hormone (2).  Preliminary trials relating to Alpha GPC administered to healthy volunteers prior to resistance exercise have shown promise in possibly increasing strength output during workouts, presumably due to its influence on HGH (4).

A clinical trial of Alpha GPC demonstrated that it may enhance lower body muscle performance related to isometric exercise (5).

Being a highly available form of choline, Alpha GPC may provide a steadier level in the body than supplementation with CDP (Citicoline).  Levels increase slowly but remain elevated longer than with Citicoline in clinical trials (6).

Optimal Choline Complex Dosage

Pure Nootropics’ Optimal Choline Complex capsules provide 200 mg of Citicoline and 100 mg of Alpha GPC.  Suggested use of Optimal Choline Complex capsules for adults is 1 capsule by mouth up to two times per day, with or without food, or as directed by your healthcare practitioner.

No daily value has been established for Alpha GPC or CDP (citicoline).  However, RDA (Recommended Daily Allowance) of Choline ranges depending on gender and age. *

  • RDA for Choline for adult men over 18 is 550 mg/day (11)
  • RDA for Choline for adult women is 400-425 mg/day (11)

 (Women who are pregnant, lactating, and children under the age of 18 should seek medical advice from a healthcare provider regarding their RDA of Choline.)

Optimal Choline Complex Side Effects and Toxicity

Side effects from short-term use of Citicoline are generally mild. Studies conducted have mostly been on a short-term basis, and as such, the safety of long-term use is not known.

Please consult your healthcare practitioner if you are taking any medications prior to beginning supplementation with Citicoline. Do not use if you are pregnant or nursing.

In both preclinical toxicological studies and clinical studies, research shows that toxicity derived from Citicoline is extremely difficult to achieve (8).

As with Citicoline, the safety of long-term use of Alpha GPC is not known.  It is generally well-tolerated, but as with all supplements and medications, some people may experience side effects.  It is considered possibly safe and side effects from Alpha GPC are mild and could include heartburn, nausea, vomiting, insomnia or excitation, and headache (9,10).

Toxicity information for Alpha GPC has been extrapolated from animal studies and demonstrates that the “No Observed Adverse Effect Level” (NOAEL) for humans was for a dose at least 150 mg/kg over a six-and-half month timespan (12).

For further information, please see our References Tab above.

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CDP Choline (Citicoline) Capsules

CDP Choline, an abbreviation of cytidine-5′-diphosphocholine, referred to as Citicoline, is an essential nutrient and precursor for the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. It is an efficient source of choline that supports overall brain health, memory function, and mental energy.

CDP Choline Benefits

  • Supports cognitive function in the elderly 
  • May improve attentional performance 
  • May limit excitotoxicity from glutamate activity 
  • Promotes an increase in brain energy through improved mitochondrial function

Citicoline plays a large role in memory formation.  A decline in cognitive memory functioning associated with aging may improve with supplementation of Citicoline (1)(6).

There is some evidence suggesting CDP choline may improve attentional performance in young adults (2).

CDP Choline may improve cerebral blood flow to the brain (7) and has the potential to decrease the accumulation of glutamate, which in excessive amounts is implicated in neurodegeneration (4).  Glutamate is a nonessential amino acid which is an excitatory neurotransmitter (8).

CDP Choline promotes an increase in brain energy through improved mitochondrial functions (4).  Mitochondria are the cell organelles that breakdown the food we eat and turn it into energy (or ATP) for the body (9).  Citicoline improves energy in three ways within the cell:  maintaining levels of phospholipids in the mitochondrial membranes, restoring ATPase activity and preventing the release of arachidonic acid from cell membranes (an oxidative stress to the body) (4).

CDP Choline Mode of Action

CDP choline is an essential nutrient and precursor to creating the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. Acetylcholine is a neurotransmitter in the parts of the brain that impact memory and learning, attention, and alertness–making it one of the most beneficial neurotransmitter compounds for overall cognitive function and brain health (4).  Citicoline is 18.5 % choline by weight (15).

Citicoline can be produced from choline already present in the body, but choline’s ability to engage in cell membrane formation (phospholipid synthesis) is incomplete without first being converted to Citicoline.  This constant demand for choline conversion to citicoline can mean that supplementing with Citicoline itself provides a boost for overall cell functioning (4).

Citicoline provides the body with choline and produces uridine as it converts into acetylcholine.  Uridine is a substrate in the Kennedy cycle which is necessary to complete the cycle and stimulates the production of phospholipid synthesis (14).

Though choline can be found in food, less than 10% of adults in the United States are reaching the recommended daily amount.  CDP Choline (Citicoline) itself is only appreciably present in a limited amount of foods such as organ meats and liver. Supplementing with Citicoline, rather than choline, provides the body with enough choline to carry out its functions in the nervous system (4).

Common dietary sources of choline are animal-based products, dairy products, whole grains, cruciferous vegetables, nuts and seeds (5).

CDP Choline Dosage

Pure Nootropics’ CDP Choline Capsules provide 300 mg of Cognizin® Citicoline. Suggested use of CDP Choline capsules for adults is 1 capsule by mouth up to two times per day, or as directed by your healthcare practitioner.

No daily value has been established for Citicoline, however the RDA (Recommended Daily Allowance) of Choline ranges depending on gender and age.*

  • RDA for Choline for adult men over 18 is 550 mg/day (13)
  • RDA for Choline for adult women is 400-425 mg/day (13)

(Women who are pregnant, lactating, and children under the age of 18 should seek medical advice from a healthcare provider regarding their RDA of Choline.)

CDP Choline Side Effects and Toxicity

Side effects from short-term use of Citicoline are generally mild. Studies conducted have mostly been on a short-term basis, and as such, the safety of long-term use is not known. It is generally well-tolerated, but as with all supplements and medications, some people may experience side effects.  It is considered possibly safe and side effects could include bradycardia, tachycardia, vomiting, nausea, or hypotension (12).  Note:  There may be pharmaceutical medications which interact with Citicoline and should not be taken together.  Please consult your healthcare practitioner if you are taking any medications prior to beginning supplementation with Citicoline. Do not use if you are pregnant or nursing.

In both preclinical toxicological studies and clinical studies, research shows that toxicity derived from Citicoline is extremely difficult to achieve (10)(11).

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Alpha GPC 50% Capsules & Powder

Alpha GPC Choline 50% (capsules and powder) is a cholinergic compound found in the brain and a precursor to creating acetylcholine.  Alpha GPC provides some additional advantages by increasing acetylcholine in the central nervous system and seems to be the more efficient choline precursor because of its bioavailability 

Alpha GPC Benefits

  • Supports cognitive function in the elderly at high doses 
  • May increase the production of the human growth hormone (HGH or somatropin) by working with pituitary gland 
  • Promotes increases in strength outputs 
  • May enhance lower body muscle performance 

Alpha GPC Mode of Action

Alpha GPC Choline, an abbreviation for Alpha-glycerylphosphorylcholine, is a cholinergic compound found in the brain and a precursor to creating acetylcholine, functioning similarly to other choline sources in acetylcholine synthesis. Alpha GPC provides some additional advantages by increasing acetylcholine in the central nervous system and seems to be the more efficient choline precursor because of its bioavailability (2).

Acetylcholine is a neurotransmitter in the parts of the brain that impact memory and learning, attention, and alertness–making it one of the most beneficial neurotransmitter compounds for overall cognitive function and brain health (3).  Supplementing with an acetylcholine precursor may promote an enhancing effect on these areas and support overall brain function.

Alpha GPC is found in many several dietary sources (animal-based products, eggs, whole grains, cruciferous vegetables, nuts, and seeds) and is a nutrient that is difficult to reach an adequate level from diet alone (3).

By working directly with the pituitary gland, Alpha GPC may increase the production of the human growth hormone (2). Preliminary trials relating to Alpha GPC administered to healthy volunteers prior to resistance exercise have shown promise in possibly increasing strength output during workouts, presumably due to its influence on HGH (4).

The ability of Alpha GPC to enhance lower body muscle performance related to isometric exercise is also being studied (5).  Alpha GPC is often found in fitness supplements because of its ability to increase power.

Alpha GPC 50% Capsules and Powder Dosage

Pure Nootropics uses Alpha GPC derived from soy and is generally considered a natural source.

Pure Nootropics’ Alpha GPC 50% Capsules provides 250 mg of Alpha GPC.  Suggested use of Alpha GPC Capsules for adults is 1 capsule by mouth, up to two times per day, or as directed by your healthcare practitioner.

Pure Nootropics’ Alpha GPC 50% powder provides 300 mg per rounded 0.625 cc scoop (provided with purchase).  Suggested use of Alpha GPC 50% powder is 1 scoop by mouth, up to two times per day, or as directed by your healthcare practitioner. (Due to variations in powder density, scoop measurements may fluctuate.  We suggest purchasing a scale for measuring accurately. A scale allows users to better track progress and cognitive response to each dose. Scales are available for purchase through Pure Nootropics).

Alpha GPC 50% Capsules and Powder Side Effects and Toxicity

The safety of long-term use of Alpha GPC is not known.  It is generally well-tolerated, but as with all supplements and medications, some people may experience side effects.  It is considered possibly safe and side effects from Alpha GPC are mild and could include heartburn, nausea, vomiting, insomnia or excitation, and headache (6,7).

Toxicity information for Alpha GPC has been extrapolated from animal studies and demonstrates that the “No Observed Adverse Effect Level” (NOAEL) for humans was for a dose at least 150 mg/kg over a six-and-half month timespan (8).

Please consult your healthcare practitioner if you are taking any medications prior to beginning supplementation with Alpha GPC. Do not use if you are pregnant or nursing.

 

For further information, please see our References Tab above.

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DHM (Dihydromyricetin) Capsules

DHM (Dihydromyricetin), also known as Ampelopsin and Ampelopsin grossedentata, is a flavonoid of the Japanese Raisin Tree, Hovenia dulcis (3).  DHM may reduce the effects of hangovers and may assist the body in alcohol metabolism.

DHM Dihydromyricetin Capsules Benefits

  • May decrease acetaldehyde (the toxic metabolite of alcohol) in humans 
  • May improve lipid metabolism 

DHM is emerging as a subject of interest in the medical community, but thus far, there has not been a large amount of research or trials conducted with humans, except for those studies referenced above.*

 The following are examples of dynamics associated with DHM through the animal model:

  • May lessen the effects of alcohol consumption (in rats) 
  • May reduce oxidative stress on the liver after alcohol consumption (in mice) 

DHM Dihydromyricetin Capsules Mode of Action

Although used for many years traditionally as Chinese medicine, scientific research on DHM and humans is scarce.  The most conclusive scientific research about DHM and alcohol has been studied in animals and has shown promise in the capability of reducing the oxidative stress alcohol puts on the body and may be able to lessen the effects of acute alcohol consumption (4, 5).

Dihydromyricetin (DHM) is believed to involve GABAa R receptors (4) and reduces oxidative stress through its high superoxide radical scavenging ability, as well as inhibiting lipid peroxidation (5).

Alcohol is metabolized after consumption into two enzymes:  alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) and aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH).  Alcohol must be broken down into these enzymes for the body to eliminate it.  ADH then breaks down alcohol to acetaldehyde, which is a highly toxic substance.  Then acetaldehyde is broken down into acetate, which is broken down into water and carbon dioxide, and eliminated from the body (1).

(DHM) may decrease the amount of acetaldehyde in the human body (2).  Acetaldehyde is the most toxic, carcinogenic byproduct of alcohol breakdown in the body.  Alcohol is metabolized mostly in the liver but also in the pancreas, brain and, gastrointestinal tract.  Acetaldehyde damages tissues in these areas while it waits to be broken down into acetate (1).

The body and liver can only metabolize alcohol at a certain rate, regardless of how much alcohol a person consumes.  Body mass, liver size, and genetic variations regarding how efficiently the enzymes ADH and ALDH function, impact how fast alcohol can be metabolized (1).

DHM Dihydromyricetin Capsules Dosage

Pure Nootropics’ DHM Dihydromyricetin provides 300 mg per 1 capsule.  Suggested use for adults is 1 capsule by mouth in the morning after consuming alcohol, or as directed by your healthcare practitioner.

DHM Dihydromyricetin Capsules Side Effects and Toxicity

The lethal oral dose in mice was greater than 5 g/kg (6).

For further information, please see our References Tab above.

If you want to take care of your current and future mental function, you’ll want to make sure you’re taking the BEST brain supplements for your brain health. In fact, since your brain directs the activities of the rest of your body, it’s best to pay attention to what your brain needs starting NOW. A great way to start supporting your current brain functioning and future brain health is to make sure you get the right nutrition, stay hydrated, limit any unhealthy habits you may have picked up like smoking or consuming too much alcohol, exercise at recommended levels for your current health status, and, to make sure you’re fully supporting your brain health, take the right vitamins and supplements to ensure you’re giving your brain exactly the nutrients it needs. 

 

WHY BRAIN HEALTH MATTERS

Your brain health matters! In a world where you feel overstretched, in our overly busy culture, you’re probably short-changing your health and wellness in favor of getting things done. Yet, if you don’t care for both your physical body and your  brain health, you’re risking a reduced ability to focus, along with poor or declining cognitive functioning, uneven moods, and potentially a rapidly failing memory. You may even be setting yourself up for future age-related issues like dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease.

If you choose to believe that you brain health matters, you need to make choices that support that. The payoff? You’ll inevitably experience better focus and cognition, improved moods and a stronger memory – both short-term and long-term. You may even be able to stave off mental decline due to aging, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.  

BIOHACKING YOUR BRAIN WITH BRAIN HEALTH SUPPLEMENTS 

Brain health supplements can be used to improve your brain function and memory, a form of biohacking. We’re all suffering overstimulation in today’s turned on, always insanely busy, racing mind, working too many hours culture. That alone can cause short term memory issues, lack of focus, feeling like you can’t pay attention, and a state of constant distraction. So are those problems caused by external forces, or are they a problem with your brain health? It may be hard to tell. And what if you could keep age-related mental decline at bay? Maybe even help prevent dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease? It’s probably worth at least trying to Biohacking Your Brain!

According to Merriam-Webster, biohacking using “science and technology to make the body function better and more efficiently.” The language and the concept started in tech and is considered “DIY biology.” Adjusting your food, exercise, sleep, meditation, nootropics, supplements and more is becoming more and more popular.

If you want to support your brain health, stabilize your mood, improve your executive function, enhance your clarity and focus, and help prevent degenerative brain disorders like dementia or Alzheimer’s, biohacking your brain is the perfect place to start. 

CAN NUTRITION ENHANCE BRAIN HEALTH?

One way to biohack your brain health is by supporting your memory and brain function with nutrients and antioxidants your brain needs. Basics like making sure you’re always adequately hydrated and that you’re emphasizing plants in your diet can help fulfill your brain’s basic nutrient needs. And strenuous exercise (doctor approved, of course!) can help elevate blood flow of nutrients to the brain and can even act as a natural antidepressant.

The number one reason we all need to pay attention to using nutrition to keep our brains healthy is that the typical American diet includes too few of the specific nutrients the brain needs like carotenoids, omega-3s and vitamin E. Even if you emphasize brain-focused nutrition in your daily menu, it’s really tough to get the recommended amount that your brain needs to perform at its highest levels or to preclude age-related brain degenerative conditions, like Alzheimer’s and dementia. Scientific research has demonstrated that people with high concentrations of carotenoids and omega-3s in their brain matter are shown to have higher cognitive function. Scientists have also proven that patients with Alzheimer’s disease are typically deficient in these specific brain-health-related nutrients.

Research also tells us that the average brain requires 12 mg of lutein and 2 mg of zeaxanthin a day. Unfortunately, the typical American citizen gets less than 10% of those amounts. We’re lucky that today, there are brain health supplements to make up the difference between what we’re getting and what we need for ultimate brain functioning and future protection.

 

NOURISHING YOUR BRAIN HEALTH THROUGH YOUR DIET

Scientific research tells us that nutrition is the secret to brain health. And studies tell us that more than 90 percent of Americans don’t get the recommended daily allowance of vitamins and minerals they need from their daily diet. According to the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, across almost every age range, Americans eat too few vegetables, fruits, whole grains, dairy, seafood, and oil, while eating too much when it comes to less nutritious and more damaging food like refined grains, added sugars, saturated fats, and sodium. This typical American diet is simply not good for brain health, which is why brain health supplements are becoming more and more popular.

Here’s a bit of advice for getting better, more brain boosting nutrition with your daily meals and snacks:

Eat a balanced diet that includes three or more portions of fruits and vegetables every day. Specifically, look for evidence of high antioxidants in the rich colors of the veggies you choose. Choose colorful options like green peppers, red tomatoes, purple grapes, dark red or blue berries, and yellow or orange carrots.

When making your meal selection (if you’re not vegetarian or vegan) include proteins like fish, beans, chicken and lean cuts of pork and beef. And be sure to consume foods high in omega-3s like cold water sourced fish like salmon, as well as walnuts, flaxseed and chia seeds.

Even if you’re making some good choices, you can cancel out the benefits of all of those antioxidants if you consume too many foods that cause inflammation like sugar, contain a lot of chemicals, are high in saturated or trans fats, are highly processed, or are high in salt.

WHAT ARE BRAIN HEALTH SUPPLEMENTS?

Brain supplements, also known as nootropics, are natural supplements or medications known to do any of the following:

  • Enhance brain power 
  • Strengthen cognitive thinking 
  • Boost memory 
  • Promote alertness or overcome sleepiness 
  • Increase creativity 
  • Level out mood swings 
  • Promote future brain health 
  • Help minimize risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease 

NOOTROPICS VS. BRAIN HEALTH SUPPLEMENTS

What brain health supplements are considered nootropics? This is tricky because not all nootropics are created equal !  Nootropics are known as cognitive enhancers.  They are a category of brain supplements that boost cognitive performance.  

Nootropics can be natural, synthetic or pharmaceutical. Synthetic nootropics, like Adderall and other stimulants (including caffeine and B12) can improve immediate focus, but research shows that they can actually harm cognitive function over time. Synthetic and pharmaceutical nootropics may not be the best choice, as they can contain addictive ingredients that can cause long-term negative side effects.

Natural nootropics, on the other hand, are beneficial for many areas of brain health (both immediate and long term); cognitive function, executive function, memory, mental health and other benefits, without all the harmful side effects that come with synthetic and pharmaceutical.   If are shopping for a nootropic, look for a natural formula that will also support your long term brain health in addition to cognition. 

HOW TO SHOP FOP BRAIN HEALTH SUPPLEMENTS

We hope we’re inspiring you to do some research into which brain health supplements are best for you personally. First things first, why are you interested in these supplements? What are your goals for supplementing your brain function and health? Are you looking to feel more alert? Is your short term memory letting you down so you’d like to boost it a bit? Do you hope to stave off dementia and Alzheimer’s? 

Brain health supplements can do all of those things, though you may need to look to different supplements for the unique benefits you’re focused on. First we recommend learning what to avoid when shopping for a brain supplement.

DO BRAIN HEALTH SUPPLEMENTS WORK?

Many brain health supplements are well-researched and proven to be helpful to cognitive function, memory and future brain health, though be mindful of what you’re purchasing, because there seem to be just as many brain health supplements that aren’t well-researched and don’t help in any way.

Look for research that’s published by well-known colleges and universities. Read through the research to make sure that the sample size is adequate for the results that the product promises. For example, if the study is based on results from 21 people participating, it’s not as credible as a study where 1,000 or more people were reporting their results from using the product. Because there are many products making false promises in the brain health supplement market, it’s even more important that you do your own research before you choose which one you should take.

Always read the fine print! If a particular brain supplement has a warning about a potential harmful negative interaction with a medication you are currently taking, we recommend that you consult your pharmacist or physician to ensure your safety BEFORE you take that supplement.

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