There are many reasons as to why people take what is commonly referred to as “brain pills”. Some

people want to improve their focus on a particular task, while others may want to improve their

memory and information retention capabilities. Many people opt for brain pills before an event that

requires their mind to be sharp and completely focused such as examinations or business meetings.

What are Nootropics?

Nootropics are a type of brain pills. They are also popularly known as smart drugs, cognitive enhancers

or memory enhancers. These substances are meant to improve the mental performance of the user.

Nootropics can contain a variety of drugs which are used for treating a range of medical conditions that

can affect the performance of the mind. Some medical conditions where these drugs are used in

treatments include dementia, schizophrenia, Alzheimer’s disease, epilepsy, ageing, Attention Deficit

Hyperactivity Disorder and stroke.

Some nootropics use natural substances instead of synthetically manufactured chemicals. Commonly

used natural substances include extracts from walnuts, ginger, fish oil, coffee and other caffeine

stimulants. Usually, nootropics are distributed as a type of dietary supplement which can improve the

mental performance of a healthy person.

Are Nootropics Safe?

It is important to exercise caution while using nootropic supplements. These supplements are not

regulated by any authoritative body. Therefore, it is possible that the supplements will not provide the

benefits advertised. Some studies have shown that nootropics have only a marginal effect on mental

performance, brain function and memory. At the same time, it is possible to for nootropics to cause side

effects in the user.

Common Side Effects of Nootropics

Usage of no tropics can lead to a number of side effects. It is crucial to stop using the supplements as

soon as these side effects begin to show themselves to prevent further harm.


The most common side effect of using nootropic supplements is headaches. Certain nootropics can

cause the brain to work harder. The brain begins to require a larger quantity of Acetylcholine which the

body is unable to produce. Due to the increased demand, the receptor sites of Acetylcholine begin to

burn out. This results in headaches. It is possible to use a good source of choline to the supplement

routine in order to eliminate the headaches.

GI Tract Issues

Excessive usage of nootropic supplements can create pressure on the intestinal system of the body due

to the excess nootropic drugs. The body considers the excess drugs to be a threat and will remove the

excessive material. However, the removal results in a number of problems in the GI tract and stomach.

Common symptoms include diarrhea, pain or nausea. This problem can be removed by reducing the

dosage of the supplements.

Insomnia and Fatigue

Certain nootropics can increase the energy levels and make the user more alert. However, in some

cases, the opposite effect can be produced, namely, insomnia and fatigue. Consumption of nootropics

should be avoided before sleeping.

Nootropic supplements have not yet been thoroughly researched or tested for its effectiveness and

long-term effects. The current research is by no means exhaustive. Often, the effectiveness is

exaggerated in order to increase sales. Most likely, the benefits of the supplements will be mild and not

worth the risk of side effects.

Author: Joan Evans

Joan Evans is a mental health specialist and has a great interest in personality disorders. In her spare time she likes to go to the woods with her golden retriever, Leroy, and write fiction.

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