Natural nootropic supplements are one of the easiest and safest ways to boost your academic performance this year.
And a couple of the nootropics in this stack can even help reduce anxiety when you’re prepping for an exam or date.
Each nootropic featured in this post should be easy to find anywhere in the world. They’re legal in most countries and affordable.
The beauty of this stack is it’ll work for students of any age. Nootropics for anyone who needs better energy, memory, recall, and motivation.
But if you are under 18 years, please be careful with nootropics and especially the dosage. Always go with the lower end of dosage recommendations.
Nootropics typically are not recommended for anyone under 18 because your brain is still developing. And you don’t want to disrupt this natural process.
Best Nootropics for School
Choose the right nootropics and you’re able to improve attention, focus, energy, mood and memory. All while supporting long-term brain health and function.
- CDP-Choline (Citicoline) – is a naturally occurring choline source for the synthesis of acetylcholine. And enhances the release of dopamine, norepinephrine and serotonin in your brain.
Recommended dosage of CDP-Choline is 250 mg twice a day.
- Gotu Kola – is often called the “student herb” in Bali because it sharpens the mind. It helps prevent the breakdown of acetylcholine in your brain. More acetylcholine helps boost cognition, concentration, learning, memory and mood.
Recommended dosage of Gotu Kola extract is up to 600 mg per day. Higher dosages should be divided into two or three smaller doses spaced a few hours apart.
- Bacopa Monnieri – was first made popular in Medhya Rasayana, India’s ancient Ayurvedic medical system. “Medhya” refers to the essence of intellect and retention. And Rasayana means the path of excellence.[i]
The bacosides A and B in Bacopa help improve signaling between brain neurons. Improving attention, recall, memory and focus. And studies show that Bacopa helps increase the speed of visual information processing, boosts learning rate and memory consolidation, and reduces anxiety.[ii]
Recommended dosage of Bacopa Monnieri extract (45% bacosides) is 200 – 450 mg per day. Higher doses should be divided into smaller doses taken several hours apart.
- Caffeine used in moderation is a great nootropic for studying because it helps improve reaction time, alertness, memory and mood.
Adenosine levels rise during the day as a byproduct of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) which is produced by your mitochondria and used as cellular fuel. As an inhibitory neurotransmitter, increases in adenosine decreases your wakefulness state. Eventually leading to sleep.
This action on adenosine also influences acetylcholine, epinephrine, serotonin and boosts the use of dopamine. Providing the stimulant effect experienced when consuming caffeine.
When caffeine boosts norepinephrine and epinephrine it activates your adrenal glands which in turn release the stress hormone cortisol.
And the diuretic effects of caffeine consumption increase the excretion of water-soluble B-Vitamins. Which are required for neurotransmitter synthesis, myelin synthesis, gene expression and cellular metabolism.
According to the Mayo Clinic, 400 mg of caffeine per day appears to be safe for most healthy adults. About the amount of caffeine in four cups of regular brewed coffee.
But to counteract some of the side effects of using caffeine I recommend the next nootropic in this list for studying. L-Theanine + caffeine is a great natural stimulant nootropic stack.
- L-Theanine – an amino acid found in green tea increases GABA, serotonin, and dopamine levels in your brain. Producing an energizing and calming effect while improving learning and memory.
Recommended dosage of L-Theanine is 200 – 400 mg once or twice per day. A study conducted in the UK found that if stacking L-Theanine with caffeine, the most effective dosage was 50 mg caffeine + 100 mg L-Theanine.[vi]
- N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine (NALT) – is a highly bio-available form of the amino acid L-Tyrosine. Which your brain uses for the synthesis of dopamine and norepinephrine.
NALT enhances working memory and executive function in the prefrontal cortex. It helps with creative flow states, is fuel for inspiration, cognitive flexibility, and the kind of “convergent thinking” you do in multiple choice exams.
Studies show the NALT can decrease blood pressure caused by the stress of exams. And could be used to mitigate the effects of stressful situations if taken prior to a stressful event like an exam.[vii]
Recommended dosage for NALT is 500 mg twice per day.
- B-Complex Supplement – your brain requires the B-Vitamins to produce all major neurotransmitters, fuel mitochondria, synthesize myelin, cerebral blood flow, gene expression and more.
None of the nootropics in this stack for school will work without the B-Vitamins.
For more on how vitamins are critical to your academic success and performance, see my post:
Nootropic studying stack
Each of the nootropics mentioned in this post are powerful on their own.
But when stacked and taken following the dosage recommendations can be a very effective method for excelling in school this year. Studying should be easier and exams less stressful to write.
This is your nootropic study stack:
- CDP-Choline (Citicoline)
- Gotu Kola
- Bacopa Monnieri
- L-Theanine (+caffeine) or Performance Lab® Stim
- N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine (NALT)
- bio-active B-Complex supplement
Use the links provided above for each of these nootropic supplements to see more on what they are, why we use them, clinical studies supporting their nootropic use, detailed dosage notes, side effects, and forms or types to buy.
Note that dosage recommendations in this post are for general use by any age. But if you are under 18, please use caution and go with the lowest recommended dose for each. For younger students you may want to cut that dosage in half again.
Good luck with your studies this year. And please use the “Comments” section below if you have any questions or require clarification on anything.
[ii] Stough C., Lloyd J., Clarke J., Downey L.A., Hutchison C.W., Rodgers T., Nathan P.J. “The chronic effects of an extract of Bacopa monniera (Brahmi) on cognitive function in healthy human subjects.” Psychopharmacology (Berlin). 2001 Aug;156(4):481-4. (source)
[iv] Wen Y., Li W., Poteet E.C., Xie L., Tan C., Yan L.J., Ju X., Liu R., Qian H., Marvin M.A., Goldberg M.S., She H., Mao Z., Simpkins J.W., Yang S.H. “Alternative mitochondrial electron transfer as a novel strategy for neuroprotection.” Journal of Biological Chemistry. 2011 May 6; 286(18):16504-15. (source)
[v] Haskell C.F., Kennedy D.O., Milne A.L., Wesnes K.A., Scholey A.B. “The effects of L-theanine, caffeine and their combination on cognition and mood.” Biological Psychology. 2008 Feb;77(2):113-22. (source)