6 Natural Nootropics to Boost Your Brain

natural nootropics

Our brains are our most important tools. It is, therefore, no surprise that a lot of research has gone into ways to boost the brain and prevent cognitive decline.

Pharmaceutical companies have spent a lot of money developing and marketing synthetic nootropics such as Adderall, Ritalin, and Modafinil.

The problem with many of these is their potential for addiction and abuse. As a result, many are classed as controlled substances in the US, and illegal substances in many European countries.

Luckily there are many natural nootropics available for similar (if not better) brain-boosting effects and improved brain health. Certain natural supplements have been shown to have amazing effects on memory, focus, problem-solving ability, and general cognition.

Effects can be compounded when put together in natural nootropic stack formulas. Below are 6 natural nootropic supplements with brain-boosting potential and studies to support their efficacy.

Bacopa Monnieri

Bacopa Monnieri is a plant used for centuries in traditional Indian Ayurvedic medicine for a variety of benefits. These include improved memory, boosted brain function, and reduction of stress and anxiety. It has become a popular supplement in the western world following studies showing significantly improved memory and thinking skills with use.

Bacopa Monnieri can be taken in capsule form, or as a powder in smoothies or teas.


  • Memory
  • Thinking skills
  • Reduces anxiety

Ginkgo Biloba

Ginkgo Biloba is a tree native to China used for thousands of years in traditional Chinese medicine. It contains many powerful antioxidants known to combat the damaging effects of free radicals. Studies have shown Ginkgo Biloba to significantly improve memory, brain function, and well-being. Some studies also found beneficial effects on anxiety and depression.

In addition to brain-boosting benefits, Ginkgo Biloba is thought to help fight Cancer, Heart Disease, Stroke, and Arthritis, due to its anti-inflammatory properties.

Ginkgo Biloba can be taken in capsule, liquid, powder, or tea leaf form. Evidence from studies suggests it is safe to take 120 – 240mg per day divided into two or more doses.


  • Memory
  • Brain Function
  • Well-being
  • Reduces anxiety and depression


Phosphatidylserine is a compound derived from Amino acids found in the brain in large amounts. It covers and protects cells in the brain and carries messages between them.

Studies have shown Phosphatidylserine to support many cognitive functions including; memory, learning, focus, problem-solving, and communication skills. It has also been shown to support motor functions, especially rapid reactions and reflexes.

Phosphatidylserine decreases in the brain with age, so supplementing this substance may prevent age-related decline. It also may have the potential to treat diseases such as Alzheimer’s.

The usual dose of Phosphatidylserine is around 300mg per day to see beneficial effects on memory. It can be taken in capsule form.


  • Memory
  • Learning
  • Focus
  • Problem-solving
  • Communication skills

Fish Oil

You can get sufficient amounts of fish oil by eating at least two portions of oily fish a week, such as sardines, mackerel, or salmon. However, if you are not getting enough in your diet, fish oil supplements are highly recommended due to their myriad health benefits.

Omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA found in fish oil are critical for brain function. Studies have shown lower DHA levels to be linked with smaller brain size, and deficits in learning and memory. Many studies have shown fish oil supplements to improve brain function in people with age-related decline and mild cognitive impairment.

One study found a correlation between pregnant women’s fish oil intake and the higher intelligence scores of their children.

In addition to brain boosting impact, fish oil has beneficial effects on heart and skin health, and anti-inflammatory properties.

Fish oil can be taken in capsule or liquid form. The recommended daily intake for EPA and DHA is between 250 and 500mg. Typically around 1000mg of fish oil supplies 300mg of EPA and DHA.


  • Memory
  • Learning
  • Improved general brain function
  • Brain development in children

Lions Mane Mushroom

Lions Mane (Hericium Erinaceus) is a tasty culinary mushroom often used as a seafood alternative. Its fruiting body resembles a mane of shaggy white fur, hence the name. It has a long history of use in Chinese medicine and contains many beneficial bioactive substances.

Studies have shown substances in Lions Mane to promote nerve growth and protect the brain against Alzheimer’s related damage. One study managed to show reversal of Alzheimer’s symptoms in mice using Lions Mane supplements.

Some studies have also shown Lions Mane to reduce anxiety and depression. Lions Mane can also be used to treat stomach problems and is thought to have gastroprotective effects.

Typical doses of Lions Mane are around 500mg per day. It can be taken in capsule form, or increasingly popular mushroom coffee, which often includes other medicinal mushrooms.


  • Promotes nerve growth
  • Protects against neurodegenerative diseases
  • Reduces anxiety and depression


Tyrosine is an amino acid naturally produced in the body which helps make a number of important compounds. These include; Dopamine, Adrenaline & Noradrenaline, and Thyroid hormones which regulate metabolism among other things.

Studies have shown Tyrosine to significantly improve working memory during mentally demanding tasks. It has also been shown to significantly improve cognitive flexibility, which relates to the ability to switch between tasks or thoughts.

Tyrosine is thought to protect the brain from stress, and as such cause improved performance in stressful or mentally demanding situations, as this study shows. In addition, it’s been shown to counteract some effects of sleep deprivation, allowing subjects of this study to stay alert for three hours longer than usual with one dose.

The greatest anti-stress effects have been seen when Tyrosine is taken 30-60 minutes before a stressful situation at 100-150mg per kg of bodyweight. Tyrosine can be taken as L-tyrosine in capsule form.


  • Working memory
  • Cognitive flexibility
  • Protects against stress
  • Counteracts sleep deprivation

Natural Nootropic Stacks

Nootropic stacks are formulas of nootropics put together to complement each other, allowing for a multitude of benefits in one hit. These pre-mixed formulas vary from brand to brand, with each claiming their own to be superior. Although sometimes expensive, buying pre-mixed nootropic stacks is likely to be cheaper and less hassle than buying individual supplements.

Below are what I believe to be the two best natural nootropics stacks available today. They have been selected for their impressive mix of natural nootropics, and lack of stimulants like caffeine, which often give a falsely positive “mind boosting” impression.

Mind Lab Pro

Mind Lab Pro provides the most comprehensive mix of natural nootropics, while Alpha Brain from Onnit provides most of the bang for much less buck.

natural nootropics

Active Ingredients

  • Bacopa Monnieri √
  • Ginkgo Biloba
  • Phosphatidylserine √
  • Fish Oil
  • Lions Mane √
  • Cognizin
  • MaritimePine Bark Extract
  • L-Tyrosine √
  • L-Theanine
  • Rhodiola Rosea
  • B-vitamins B6, B9, B12


  • Supports memory & learning
  • Increases attention & focus
  • Improves mindset & mood
  • Boosts creativity
  • Encourages neurogenesis
  • Fights degeneration
  • Caffeine-free
  • A most comprehensive mix of natural nootropics that available

Alpha Brain

natural nootropics

Active Ingredients

  • Bacopa Monnieri √
  • Ginkgo Biloba
  • Phosphatidylserine √
  • Fish Oil
  • Lions Mane
  • L-Tyrosine √
  • L-Theanine
  • Cat’s Claw (bark) extract
  • Alpha GPC
  • Toothed Clubmoss extract


  • Supports memory
  • Promotes focus
  • Aids mental processing 
  • Helps with flow state (the feeling of being “in the zone”)
  • Caffeine-free
  • Gluten-free
  • BSCG (Certified Drug-Free)
  • Most of the MindLab benefits at much less cost

How Natural Nootropics Work

The exact effects of any given nootropic will vary from person to person and dosage to dosage since a variety of personal characteristics, actions, and features will continue to interfere with the total effectiveness of nootropics on the brain and body.

However, the very thing which makes nootropics the kind of substance they are is that they work to increase the number of neurotransmitters functioning within the brain. Nootropics are also able to increase blood flow to the brain, acting as “vasodilators”.

Natural nootropics have the ability to offer health benefits to all types of people, and can be used even when the user is perfectly healthy, but employed as a catalyst to the already healthy brain instead.

They may help strengthen the brain’s memory, ability to learn, level of concentration, and ability to focus.

Potential Side Effects of Taking Nootropics

One of the best parts about using nootropics is that they are natural and because of their natural makeup and simple composition, most users never experience the potential side effects.

However, it is important that consumers research and examine the potential side effects of any drug before allowing it to enter their bodies.

That being said, the most common side effects of taking nootropics include nausea and headaches. While some users have also reported experiencing an allergic reaction after taking certain nootropic drugs.

Some Tips On How Users Can Make The Most Out Of Nootropics

  • Make sure that you always get enough sleep
  • Take care of your overall body
  • Maintain a balanced and healthy diet
  • Exercise your brain


Natural nootropics are affordable, safe, and easy to take pills.

The drugs work to enhance the brain and could be used to either treat serious illnesses in addition to enhance the lives of ordinary citizens.

While there is still much to be discovered about this incredible class of drugs, nootropics are a type of supplement with tremendous opportunity.

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