In today’s world, brainpower rules. In fact, the percentage of Americans that worked in professional, managerial, clerical, and service jobs (excluding domestic service) rose from one-quarter to three-quarters between 1910 and 2000, replacing many of the manual labor jobs that were so common at the turn of the century. Now that we rely on our mental capacity more than ever, nootropics are becoming a popular way to support attention and help boost memory. This leaves many people with questions: Are nootropics safe? Which is the best nootropic for you? Read on for evidence-based answers!
At first glance, “nootropic” sounds like something that might come from a tropical jungle. However, this word actually comes from the Greek words noos ‘mind’ and tropē ‘turning.’ Interestingly, the word “tropic” itself also stems from the Greek word for ‘turning,’ as the tropics are defined by the two ellipses drawn by the movement of the Earth around the Sun.
The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines a nootropic substance as “a substance that enhances cognition and memory and facilitates learning.” In practice, this covers everything from Ginkgo Biloba to the caffeine in coffee and “smart drugs” like Piracetam. Let’s move on to some concrete examples as we explore if nootropics are safe.
Natural vs. Synthetic
To answer the question “are nootropics safe,” we need to define the two distinct groups of nootropics that exist. The first is the group of natural nootropics that are used either in whole-plant form or as a standardized extract. Examples of these include Panax Ginseng, Ginkgo Biloba, and Mitragyna Speciosa (kratom). These nootropics may offer benefits such as neuroprotection and reduced inflammation, but they can also have uncomfortable side effects, contraindications, and interactions just like pharmaceutical drugs.
The second group of nootropics includes synthetic nootropics made in a lab. Synthetic nootropics — like all synthetic drugs — offer a chemical in its purest form that acts on the body in a specific way. Many of these nootropics are safe. Piracetam, for example, is a cyclic derivative of GABA (gamma aminobutyric acid) thought to act as a cognitive enhancer and also help with the symptoms of myoclonus (twitching). This drug has quite a good safety profile, with most side effects listed being minor discomforts like diarrhea and weight gain.
Do Your Homework on Side Effects
The question “are nootropics safe” depends on the kind of safety that you’re looking for. For example, if you take medications, suffer from a serious health problem, or are pregnant or breastfeeding, a “safe” herbal product might not be “safe” for you. In contrast to prescription medications like oxycodone and alprazolam (Xanax), taking a large dose of a single nootropic is not likely to result in death. However, even a 100% pure and organic herb could harm a developing fetus or lead to a life-threatening situation if used incorrectly or combined with certain substances.
If you’re a healthy person who doesn’t take any medications and isn’t pregnant, nootropics are probably safe for you in moderate amounts. However, it is still important to research any potential side effects to ensure you are informed and aware beforehand.
Choose Only Trustworthy, Lab-Tested Products
The advantage that pharmaceuticals have over herbal products is that you know exactly the amount of active ingredient in each dose. If you’re looking for the best nootropic on the herbal scene, choose a product that has been third-party lab-tested for heavy metals, adulterants, pesticides, and strength.
Check Any Contraindications Before Use
As we mentioned earlier, nootropics are safe for most people, but some of them might not be safe for you due to a few different factors. Before taking any new product, be sure to read through the list of contraindications, and consult with your healthcare provider about interactions, usage, supervision, and signs to watch out for.
Begin with the Smallest Possible Dose
Finally, the best way to make sure your nootropics are safe is to start small and increase gradually. Low doses can help you avoid most side effects and allow you to experiment comfortably until you find your personal “sweet spot.”
Shop All-Natural Herbs at Kratora
Now you have the information to confirm that nootropics are safe, and if you are interested in exploring some of the best natural nootropics, be sure to browse the range at Kratora. We offer an extensive selection of kratom, CBD, and ethnobotanicals from around the world that have been used for centuries to enhance productivity. All of our products are third-party lab-tested and covered by our 30-day customer satisfaction guarantee. Shop natural nootropics with us today to receive same-day shipping on orders submitted before 3 p.m. Eastern Time Monday through Friday and 1 p.m. Eastern Time on Saturdays (excluding holidays).
Please note that the US FDA has not approved kratom to be sold for human consumption, sold for external use only. The statements in this article have not been evaluated by the FDA. None of the products sold on our website are intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease or medical condition.
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