The UK’s leading retailer of Nootropic Stacks & Supplements!

NootropicsUK.com is dedicated to bringing you the best legal nootropics. We not only manufacture our own high-quality supplements but also work together with other leading British and European brands to bring you the widest variety of nootropic products possible. 

Here’s what sets us apart from other nootropic suppliers in the UK:

  • We have an extensive product lineup that includes all of the most widely used nootropics
  • Our products are manufactured in a state-of-the-art ISO-certified British facility that follows strict Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) standards to ensure safety and quality
  • We also offer products from many other British and European nootropic brands
  • Our prices are affordable and we ship to the UK for free
  • If you’re not 100% satisfied, you can return your product for a refund within 30 days
  • We have many satisfied customer reviews

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The ABC’s of Nootropics UK

Nootropics are an exciting category of food supplements that’s been steadily growing in popularity. They’re taken to boost your cognitive function. 

Nootropics can be somewhat confusing so we put together a quick guide to help you out. What are nootropics? Are they legal? What are their benefits? 

Here’s what you need to know before diving into the fascinating world of cognitive enhancement.

What are nootropics? 

Also known as smart drugs, brain boosters, and cognition enhancers, nootropics are natural and man-made compounds that improve cognitive performance and brain health. 

They’re typically used to enhance memory, learning, mood, focus, motivation, and creativity, and provide other cognitive benefits. 

However, today’s wider definition of nootropics also includes compounds taken to reduce anxiety, improve stress resistance, protect the brain, and improve overall cognitive health.

You’re already familiar with the most widely consumed nootropic in the world: caffeine. 

Other common nootropics include L-theanine, creatine, Ginkgo biloba, Asian ginseng, Rhodiola rosea, and citicoline, but the whole list is close to 100 different substances. 

What are the benefits of nootropics?

Nootropics have a long list of potential cognitive benefits:

  • Mood: nootropics can elevate your mood, improve motivation, and lower anxiety, all of which can contribute to better cognitive performance.
  • Creativity: some nootropics are used to enhance creative thinking. 
  • Attention: difficulty focusing and concentrating is one of the most common reasons people turn to nootropics.
  • Memory: nootropics are frequently used to enhance various aspects of memory, such as working memory, long-term memory, and memory recall. 
  • Learning: learning is closely related to memory and is another reason many people and students in particular turn to nootropics.
  • Stress reduction: many nootropics, and especially so-called adaptogens, are used to improve the body’s resistance to various forms of stress, which is one of the main contributors to poor cognitive performance.
  • Brain protection: protecting the brain against oxidative stress and other harmful processes is another common reason to take nootropics. 

How do nootropics work?

Nootropics influence the brain in multiple ways. Some of the most common mechanisms include:

  • Influencing neurotransmitters, brain messenger chemicals like dopamine and serotonin that allow neurons to communicate with each other
  • Increasing blood flow to the brain
  • Supplying certain nutrients, such as choline or fatty acids
  • Protecting the brain from oxidative stress and other potentially harmful processes
  • Influencing mitochondria — the energy-producing parts of cells
  • Stimulating neurogenesis, the growth of new brain cells

What types of nootropics are there?

Nootropics can be natural or synthetic compounds. Another helpful way to break down nootropics is to classify them into different groups:

  • Vitamins and minerals, which are essential nutrients that can have nootropic benefits due to their roles in energy production, brain health, and more. Common examples are the B vitamins and magnesium. 
  • Herbs and herbal extracts, which typically contain one or many active compounds with nootropic effects. Bacopa and ginkgo are two popular examples of nootropic herbs.
  • Adaptogens, a special class of herbs that increase the body’s resistance to various forms of stress, including psychological stress, sleep deprivation, and fatigue. This category includes popular plants such as Asian ginseng and Rhodiola rosea.
  • Phospholipids, which are components of cell membranes. Phospholipids are especially important for the brain because they tend to decline as we age. This category includes phosphatidylserine, phosphatidylcholine, and other compounds.
  • Choline, an important brain nutrient needed to make the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. Choline comes in a variety of forms, such as citicoline and alpha GPC.
  • Racetams, a group of synthetic nootropics. Romanian chemist Corneliu E. Giurgea synthesized piracetam, the first racetam, in the 1960s, coining the term “nootropic” to describe its effects.
  • Amphetamines, synthetic stimulants such as Adderall used to treat ADHD and other disorders but also used as off-label nootropics. 
  • Antioxidants, which are compounds that protect the brain and other parts of the body against oxidative stress. Common examples are maritime pine bark extract, Chaga mushroom, and green tea extract. 
  • Amino acids, the building blocks of proteins. Some amino acids can have nootropic effects, such as L-theanine, creatine, and L-tyrosine.

What are nootropic stacks?

A nootropic stack is a combination of two or more nootropics. Stacks are used for synergistic effects or specific benefits, such as improving mood or memory. 

Most nootropic supplements are stacks that combine multiple ingredients. You can also make your own stack at home by buying separate nootropics and combining them.

The best example of a nootropic stack is caffeine and L-theanine. Caffeine is the most widely consumed stimulant in the world, whereas L-theanine is a calming, focus-improving amino acid found in tea leaves. 

When used together, L-theanine helps counteract caffeine’s side effects such as anxiety and jitteriness.

Are nootropics legal in the UK?

Most of the nootropics you’ll see on the market fall into the categories of herbs, nutrients (amino acids, vitamins, minerals), and other natural compounds. As such, they’re classified as food supplements and are perfectly legal in the UK. 

This means you can buy them over the counter (OTC) just like any other food supplement. 

However, as we noted earlier, nootropics also include synthetic substances made in a lab. The legal status of synthetic nootropics depends on the particular compound and country.

For example, Adderall is one drug that’s often used as an off-label nootropic, despite being considered a controlled substance in the UK and many other countries. 

Are nootropics backed by research?

There’s a large body of scientific research investigating the cognitive effects of nootropic substances. Having said that, for most nootropics, there isn’t enough high-quality research to provide conclusive evidence of their cognitive benefits.

Also, many studies are limited to animals or people with specific conditions, so it’s difficult to say whether the reported effects translate to healthy adults.

The only exception to this is caffeine, L-theanine, and a few other nootropics that have been extensively studied for decades.

Who uses nootropics?

Most nootropic users are healthy adults looking to improve their cognitive performance and brain health. 

The three most common groups of nootropic users are university students, working professionals, and competitive athletes.

This isn’t surprising as these occupations often require long stretches of peak mental performance, particularly in terms of attention, motivation, memory, problem-solving, and mood. 

However, considering the competitive nature of today’s world and the fact that we all deal with stress, anxiety, and other mental problems, nootropics are used by people from all walks of life, including young parents and older adults looking to keep their mind sharp.

Health Warning

We recommend consulting with your doctor or another qualified healthcare professional before trying any nootropic supplement. This is even more important if you’re already taking other prescription medications which can interact with nootropic supplements.

Although most nootropics are generally considered safe, everyone’s brain chemistry is different and different compounds have different risks and potential side effects.

Nootropics are not intended to cure, treat, or prevent any symptom or disease, with the exception of certain prescribed drugs, such as Adderall.