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If you’ve ever seen Bradley Cooper in the movie “Limitless”, you may be tempted by the concept of nootropics.
These pills/supplements are essentially designed to be “brain food” or “smart pills” which maximize your cognitive functions and mental performance.
However, if you’d rather stick to natural vegan nootropics instead of artificial drugs, we’ve compiled 5 of the best vegan nootropics right here.
What Are Nootropic Supplements?
Nootropics products are pills or natural supplements that are designed to boost cognitive function, mental performance, brain health, and lead to a more agile mind. They are often used by students to help them study or by job candidates who want to ace their interview.
The term “nootropics” comes from the Greek noo, meaning mind, and trope, which is French for “change”. They were developed by Dr. Corneliu E. Giurgea to enhance brain functioning and lead to a more agile mind.
Nootropics supposedly protect neurons in your brain from damage and aging by increasing blood flow and oxygen to the neurons. This is said to improve memory, mental performance and mental acuity, although there are some who disagree.
Certain people might benefit from certain combinations of certain things, but across populations, there is still no conclusive proof that substances of this class improve cognitive functions.
“Smart Drugs Smarts” Podcast Host
In other words, nootropics might work for you, but even the best nootropics supplements are not guaranteed to work for everyone, so take them with a pinch of salt.
Our Top Vegan Nootropics (2020 Updated)
OUR #1 RATED
Mind Lab Pro
OUR #2 RATED
Performance Lab Mind
OUR #3 RATED
Zhou Neuro Peak Brain Support
OUR #4 RATED
CBD Pure Hemp Oil
OUR #5 RATED
1. Mind Lab Pro (Editor's Choice)
Mind Lab Pro’s nootropic supplements are housed in a lovely vegan capsule which is easy to swallow.
These pills contain a variety of ingredients which are said to support the brain, including bacopa monnieri, lion’s mane mushroom, phosphatidylserine and citicoline.
Personally, I noticed a boost in my brain’s energy and sharpness. When I was working, I was more easily able to recall information and improve my work without feeling overly stressed.
Try it for yourself and let me know in the comments of your experience. You'll love it too for sure!
Of course, that could just be a placebo effect, but I feel that it did help me a lot.
2. Performance Lab Mind
According to the manufacturer, this new product promotes brain regeneration and plasticity for long-range health and clarity.
This makes it more of a long-term nootropics solution instead of a short-term magic bullet for making it through an exam or job interview.
Ingredients including phosphatidylserine and citicoline are designed to increase blood flow to the brain, supporting a healthy lifestyle and agile mind.
The company claim that their nootropics pills can boost brain cell membrane formation by 26% and brain energy by 13.6%, which sounds promising indeed.
This product is caffeine free, but I usually take it with coffee ‘cos I’m a badass. And you are too, right?
3. Zhou Neuro Peak Brain Support
Zhou’s vegan nootropics supplement features carefully blended ingredients which have been formulated to maximize the flow of oxygen to the brain, helping to protect your neurons from damage over time.
In contrast to other nootropics on this list, Zhou Neuro Peak Brain Support uses rhodiola rosea which also helps to improve mood and reduce stress.
If you’re trying to push your brainpower to the max, it’s often due to stressful situations, so it makes sense to prevent and treat stress on the brain.
I'd love to hear your feedback and experience. Stress also stops us from sleeping due to worrying, so it’s helpful to curb it. So let me know in the comments section if you noticed these improvements while taking this vegan nootropic.
4. CBD Pure Hemp Oil
Now a couple of things should be noted before introducing this product to the list; first, it isn't strictly a nootropic, at least not in the same sense some of our other recommendations are, secondly, a lot of "CBD" based products are essentially snake oil, not actually containing any of the beneficial parts of the hemp plant.
With all that said though, CBDPure has really helped me with mental acuity, focus, and general mood/wellbeing, taken alongside other nootropics it can make a dramatic impact.
Taking just a couple drops a day in the morning (I just whip it in my smoothie) has had a great effect on my ability to tackle tasks and get things done.
For those worried it might have side effects, get you high, or maybe even make you fail a drugs test at work. It won't, the part of the plant they take it from has no psychotropic properties whatsoever and you should read the testimonials worldwide at what a difference it can make.
Vegans beware though, they do offer a large 750 softgel option and it contains gelatin and no clarification as to what kind, stick to the oil for now.
That what you were after?
Formulated by UCLA-trained scientists, Trubrain promises to boost your energy so that you can enjoy life better. Personally, after taking this just for a few times, I felt like I'm on the top of the world with the energy boost that it gave me.
After continually using it, I observe that I can now already manage stress better, perform my duties well at work and home, and have never more mentally alert in my life!
It is designed to help you juggle distractions and perform at your peak. It is also made for working memory and focus so that you can find the right words, faster.
It indeed helps you stay sharp all day long.
6. Vital Brain Booster
The name “vital brain booster” seems a bit gimmicky and optimistic, but this supplement has actually shown itself to be one of the top natural nootropics that us vegans can buy.
This product claims to improve your brain health and memory quality, featuring top-class nootropics like bacopa minnieri in addition to vitamins like B12 which are in high demand for us veggies and vegans.
One of my co-workers took this before taking their driving test for the 5th time and they passed. I’m not saying there’s a cause-and-effect relationship there, but he’s really bad at driving so it was probably the nootropics.
This vegan nootropics definitely helped my co-worker and it can work wonders for you too.
7. Insight Vegan Nootropic
Insight claim that these vegan nootropics can boost your clarity and performance in just 30 minutes, which seems like a bold claim to me. Personally, I didn’t notice a difference that quickly, but I was feeling sharper after a couple of days.
These pills are also supposed to lower stress and anxiety levels too, thanks to natural herbs like rhodiola rosea which is sometimes featured in these products.
I found that these pills were super effective as a pre-workout supplement. Although they didn’t affect me physically, I felt sharper throughout my gym session for sure.
It boosts energy levels and I was able to put my 100% while doing my reps which resulted in a super-pumped gym session.
Who wouldn't like that?
What Are The Short-term Benefits Of Nootropics?
1. Improved Focus
Nootropics ingredients such as l-theanine are noted for their ability to improve mental creativity and cognition, with additional ingredients like caffeine helping to “excite” the mind and stimulate its creativity. (1)
2. Improved Mood
Bad moods are often linked to chemical imbalances, poor connections, and other issues in the brain. However, nootropics help to improve overall brain health, reducing the likelihood of bad moods. For example, bacopa monnieri is an adaptogenic herb which is said to treat stress and anxiety.
3. Memory Boost
Many ingredients of nootropics are noted for their ability to boost short term memory, sometimes referred to as “working memory”. For instance, citicoline has been shown to improve memory in elderly people with cognitive impairments, while bacopa monnieri is often used by students who need to learn and retain lots of information in the short term. (2)
4. More Energy
Some nootropics supplements contain caffeine as a more literal energy booster, but there are plenty of nootropics which boost brain energy more organically. For instance, vitamin B12 is a key cofactor in brain cell energy metabolism, while Cognizin lends itself to a 13.6% increase in brain metabolism. If you want to learn more about this vitamin check out our page on vegan B12 supplements here.
5. Improved Sleep
Certain compounds, in particular l-theanine, are renowned for their ability to improve sleep in human-based studies. L-theanine is known for boosting alertness during the day and then promoting relaxation at night, making it ideal for long term usage.
What Are The Long-term Benefits Of Nootropics?
1. Neuroprotection And Brain Regeneration
Many nootropics ingredients have benefits for brain regeneration and neuroprotection as you age. For example, vitamin B12 is known for its myelin sheath repair which protects neurons from damage. (3) Similarly, citicoline has been shown to optimize brain structure and protect against brain degeneration is animal trials, although human trials are yet to be conducted.
2. Anti-Ageing Properties
Studies suggest that your cognitive abilities peak at around age 22 and then begin a slow decline which often accelerates in your late 20s. As such, many young and middle-aged adults take nootropics to preserve their brain and keep it “younger” for longer. Brain aging is largely due to the presence of free radicals, which is why nootropics with antioxidant properties are brilliant for slowing this process down.
Aside from the benefits discussed above, you can learn more about it here:
What Is The Best Vitamin For Memory And Focus?
The best vitamins for improving and focus are B-vitamins like B12 and B6. This is because B-vitamins are involved in various brain-related functions, such as converting nutrients into neurotransmitters and ensuring proper mitochondrial functioning. (4) Vitamins B3, B9, and B12 are particularly good for improving focus.
How Can I Improve My Brain Memory And Concentration?
You can improve your brain memory and concentration by taking small steps over time. For instance, if you struggle to study for extended periods of time; try to study for 5 minutes without allowing yourself to be distracted.
The next day, try studying for 10 minutes without any distractions. Slowly increase your concentration over time to reprogram your brain.
Also consider creating a to-do list or simply jotting down any pressing thoughts that cross your mind when you’re trying to concentrate – knowing that your thoughts are collected can calm a busy mind.
Practicing meditation and mindfulness is also helpful for many people, as it forces them to be more grounded and focus their mind on the “here and now” rather than events happening in the past or future. (5)
Often, we are not fully present in the moment because we are too caught up thinking about potential events – mindfulness rewires your brain to concentrate on the present without distractions.
Can Nootropics Cause Anxiety?
Certain nootropics may cause anxiety for some users, but many nootropic products are designed to fight against the symptoms of anxiety. Ultimately, different brains react uniquely to different nootropics blends.
What Is The Most Effective Vegan Nootropic?
Citicoline is the most effective vegan nootropic. Citicoline is generally regarded as the best nootropic due to the energy-boosting effects it has on the brain and ability to improve cognitive efficiency.
The energizing effects of citicoline negate the need for substances such as caffeine, which can have nasty side effects such as jitters and energy crashes.
My #1 Vegan Nootropic Recommendation Is...
Now we’ve evaluated the mainstay nootropics products and ingredients, hopefully you’ve learned about how to nourish your brain and boost your mental energy without downing 50 espressos and hoping for the best.
Mind Lab Pro are very much leaders in this field, which is one of the reasons why I can confidently recommend their supplements for those looking to improve their brain health, reduce aging, and increase their mental performance.
Oh, and by the way, it’s apparently pronounced “know-uh-troe-picks”, according to the British. I’ve been saying “nooh-trop-icks” for all this time, like an American jerk. The struggle is real, but our pronunciation makes way more sense, I know so because I took some nootropics and considered the spelling long and hard.
Mind Lab Pro
Best Vegan Nootropics
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