Lithium Orotate supports serotonin levels

Lithium Orotate

David Tomen
David Tomen
16 minute read
Lithium helps prevent mood swings, is anti-anxiety and antidepressant, promotes neurogenesis, protects from neurodegenerative disease, and is anti-aging

Key Takeaways

  1. Lithium is a natural alkali metal essential for reproductive health and overall wellness in humans and animals.

  2. Historically used for therapeutic purposes, lithium is studied for its neuroprotective and mood-stabilizing effects.

  3. Micro-dosing lithium through supplements like Lithium Orotate offers cognitive benefits such as mood balancing, promoting growth factors and neurogenesis, and brain protection.

  4. Adequate lithium intake from diet and water may help prevent mental and neurological diseases, while low levels can be associated with depression, anxiety, and memory decline.

  5. Lithium Orotate is a popular micro-dosing option that provides mood stabilization, neuroprotection, and cognitive enhancement without toxic side effects of higher doses.

Lithium is a soft, silvery-white alkali metal so reactive (it sparks when it touches water) that it’s not found in nature on its own. Instead, it’s found in mineral compounds and in mineral water.

Cosmologists believe that lithium was one of the 3 elements synthesized in the Big Bang.[i] So it’s been around for a long time.Lithium orotate as a nootropic

Most of us associate prescription lithium with treating mental illnesses like bipolar disorder and mania (lithium carbonate). Or the lithium-ion battery in our phone. Which has a tendency to blow up occasionally.

Turns out that the anti-psychotic medication lithium isn’t even a drug. It’s actually a naturally occurring mineral. Lithium salts are part of the same family of minerals that include potassium and sodium.

As a nootropic, micro-dosing lithium provides some amazing anti-aging benefits. Recent research shows that low-dose lithium may also help slow the progression of neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s, dementia and Parkinson’s disease.

Low-dose lithium also helps neurogenesis and memory. And is a mood stabilizer.

Here we’ll investigate daily or frequent use of Lithium Orotate as a nootropic, and how it benefits cognitive health.

Lithium helps:


Lithium is an alkali mineral and one the trace elements considered essential for both animal and human reproductive health, and general health and wellness.

Discovered as a chemical element in 1817, lithium’s first recorded modern medical use was in 1871 for the treatment of mania.

But the use of lithium for therapeutic use goes back to ancient Greek and Roman times. People enjoyed soaking in alkali springs to help with physical and mental illness.

People have been using mineral springs for therapeutic use ever since. Lithia Springs in Douglas County, Georgia was so popular that people came for miles just to drink the water.Litha Springs poster 1988 advertising lithium therapy at a spa

The Sweet Water hotel, a luxury 500-room resort was opened in 1887. And attracted famous authors, business people and prominent politicians who came for the spring’s health benefits. The name “Lithia” stems from water rich in lithium.

Studies from around the world have shown the critical health benefits of lithium. One study using data from 27 Texas counties from 1978 – 1987 found that rates of suicide, homicide and rape were significantly higher in counties whose drinking water contained little or no lithium.[v]

Another study of lithium levels in tap water in 18 municipalities in Japan showed standard mortality ratios lower in places with higher lithium levels.[vi]

Yet another study conducted in Texas in 2013 confirmed the original findings in that state. Drinking water samples from 226 counties found a correlation between lithium levels and suicide rates.[vii]

Researchers who conducted meta-analyses of lithium levels and public drinking water suggested “increasing lithium levels of drinking water could potentially reduce the risk of suicide, and justify administering lithium to tap water.”[viii]

An article in the Lancet in 1949 by John Cade is credited for the modern medical use of lithium as an effective treatment for manic psychosis.[ix]

The United States FDA approved high dose lithium carbonate and lithium citrate in 1970 for the treatment of bipolar disorder. Carbonic acid and citric acid are mineral carriers used to transport lithium throughout your body.

Doctors also prescribe lithium off-label for treating migraines, seizure disorders and psychosis usually after other treatments have failed.

But as we dig deeper into the most recently published research on lithium, we realize this trace element is essential for optimal health and brain function.

The lithium we get from our diet prevents many neurological and psychiatric problems. Micro-dosing lithium as a nootropic with a supplement like Lithium Orotate can help make up for the what we don’t get from our food and water.

Lithium is naturally available from fish, processed meat, milk, dairy products, eggs, potatoes and vegetables. Your typical dietary intake of lithium can range from 2 – 600 mcg. Amounts vary depending on where the food is grown.

lithium orotate supplementation stabilizes mood

How does Lithium work in the brain?

Lithium helps brain health and function in several ways. But two in particular stand out.

  1. Lithium stabilizes mood. Recent research has discovered that lithium’s mood stabilization effects may be due to its ability to boost the production of new brain cells (neurogenesis).

Lithium inhibits the enzyme glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK-3β). This inhibition upregulates brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), and insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) which stimulates neural stem cells to produce new neurons in the hippocampus.[x]

When neural stem cells produce new neurons in the hippocampus, mood and memory work as designed. But a breakdown in neurogenesis results in mood disorders.

Lithium has long been known to control mania and stabilize mood in bipolar patients. But it was not generally thought of as an antidepressant. Researchers in Tel Aviv provided the first evidence that inhibiting GSK-3β exerted a rapid antidepressant effect in mice.[xi]

Another team at Howard Hughes Medical Institute in Pennsylvania showed that feeding mice chow laced with low-dose lithium for 15 days produced a dose-dependent antidepressant effect.[xii]

Lithium induced gene transcription in the hippocampus, amygdala and hypothalamus. All areas implicated in depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, autism and schizophrenia.

  1. Lithium protects your brain.  Your brain cells are at constant risk of damage from exposure to toxins you encounter every day from food, air, water and your environment. And the excitotoxins produced by ordinary brain cell metabolism.

Glutamate plays a major role in the synaptic plasticity needed for learning and memory.[xiii] But over-activity of glutamate on its NMDA receptors causes neuron death and is implicated in Alzheimer’s, Huntington’s and Parkinson’s disease. Lithium inhibits this overactivity.[xiv]

Lithium also increases the production of a neuroprotective protein called bcl-2.[xv] Researchers maintain that lithium is the only “medication” that has been demonstrated to significantly increase bcl-2 in several brain areas.

Lithium has also recently been evaluated in preventing and treating traumatic brain injury. In a study conducted in 2014, Dr. Peter Leeds stated that lithium had “demonstrated robust beneficial effects in experimental models of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). These include decreases in TBI-induced brain lesion, suppression of neuroinflammation, protection against blood-brain barrier disruption, normalization of behavioral deficits, and improvement of learning and memory, among others.[xvi]

Lithium Orotate for the treatment of traumatic brain injury

How things go bad

In 1985, the United States EPA estimated that dietary intake of lithium from food in the USA varied from 0.6 to 3.1 mg per day.[xvii] For comparison, people who live in the Andes in Northern Argentina consume 2 to 30 mg per day, with 2 – 3 mg just from drinking water.[xviii]

As your dietary sodium and caffeine increases, so does lithium excretion in urine which increases your requirement for this essential trace mineral.

Your exposure to stress and toxins from things like mercury, aspartame, MSG, Bisphenol A (BPA) and other excitotoxins also raise cortisol and other stress hormones. Increasing your need for more water-soluble nutrients like B-vitamins, magnesium, zinc and lithium.

Low lithium levels are associated with …

↑ Depression and anxiety increase

Memory and learning ability decline

↑ Insomnia increases

↑ Sensitivity to stress and chronic pain increase

↓ Natural healing processes decline

Adequate daily intake of lithium could help prevent many mental and neurological diseases due to this trace minerals effects on nervous system metabolism. And it’s anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects.

Lithium orotate stabilizes mood

Lithium Orotate benefits

The clinical research and studies on the neuroprotective benefits of lithium are so overwhelming, some scientists are beginning to ask “why isn’t everyone using lithium”?

Here’s a summary of how micro-dosing lithium using Lithium Orotate can benefit your brain.

  • Inhibits apoptosislithium inhibits GSK-3 which has been linked to apoptotic cell death
  • NMDA-receptorslithium reduces glutamate induced toxicity mediated by NMDA-receptors which helps in mood disorders, Alzheimer’s, and other autoimmune and inflammatory diseases
  • Neuroprotection – blocks the development of beta-amyloid tangles and plaque
  • Neurogenesis lithium promotes the increase of  brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) needed for synaptic plasticity in learning and memory. Lithium also boosts nerve growth factor and glial-derived neurotrophic factor affecting learning, memory, mood and overall brain health[xix]
  • Neuronal stem cellslithium stimulates the stem cells needed to produce new neurons (neurogenesis)
  • Stabilizes moodlithium is known for providing a calming effect in healthy people as well as those dealing with depression, bipolar disorder, and mania
  • Suicide prevention – adequate levels of lithium has been shown to reduce suicide risk in multiple studies worldwide
  • Depressionlithium helps with treatment-resistant depression. In fact, lithium has been shown to improve the effectiveness of antidepressant medications
  • N-acetyl aspartate (NAA)lithium increases NAA which has been associated with higher IQ scores[xx] (i.e. lithium will make you smarter!)

The benefits of supplementing with lithium go far beyond just optimizing cognitive health. Lithium also helps decrease insulin resistance, helps in treatment of alcoholism and other addictions, supports bone health, balances your circadian rhythm and more.

How does Lithium Orotate  feel?

My personal experience with Lithium Orotate has made me a believer in micro-dosing lithium. I’m Adult ADD and deal with mood swings from time to time.

If I’m going around the bend because something upset me, I take 5 mg of Lithium Orotate. Within 15 minutes my mood stabilizes and I feel normal again. Consistent use puts me in a happy does lithium orotate work for depression?

Many others report you’ll feel the results taking a low dose of lithium quickly. But for some, the full effect can take anywhere from 1 to 3 weeks. Micro-dosing 5 – 10 mg of lithium daily results in consistent results within a month or two for some. I’ve experienced great results within a couple of days.

So if you lash out at people in anger, and don’t fully understand why you get so angry – it could be your lithium levels are low.

Many neurohackers with depression and anger issues notice results quickly. Within the first couple of days you should feel more calm, relaxed, and experience less stress.

Keep in mind that lithium at any dose is not for everyone. But if you get adequate lithium from your diet and water, and still experience some of the mood swings talked about in this review, you could be dealing with other issues. You should know within a couple of hours of supplementing with low-dose lithium if this supplement is for you.

For some, Lithium Orotate means feeling excited about life for the first time in a long time. Anxiety and social anxiety are no longer a problem. Life is more fun and enjoyable.

Some say Lithium Orotate works better than any prescription that they’ve ever tried to treat severe depression. It provides a nice, smooth mood balance without all the toxicity associated with mega-doses of lithium carbonate.

If you’re dealing with PTSD or mild insomnia, you may want to try Lithium Orotate. Focus could improve, racing thoughts diminish and motivation levels could increase. You’ll have more coping ability.

lithium orotate supports better learning and memory

Lithium Orotate Clinical Research

Lithium Improves Memory

A study at McMaster University in Canada set out to determine the effects on hippocampus volume in 14 bipolar patients who received lithium therapy.

The researchers examined the effects of lithium on hippocampal volumes and memory performance and recall over 2 – 4 years. The patients had not received any type of medication prior to using lithium.

The study found increases in hippocampus volume over time. And evidence of improvement of verbal memory performance over the 4-year measurement period.

The researchers concluded that the results of the study were consistent with the literature stating the neuroprotective effects of lithium. And that long-term lithium treatment is associated with preservation of memory and recall due to increased hippocampus size.[xxi]

Lithium Increases Mood in Recovering Addicts

24 adults recovering from heroin or methamphetamine addiction participated in a study in San Diego. Group A received 400 mcg per day of lithium taken orally for 4 weeks. The placebo Group B naturally took a non-active placebo.

Subjects completed a mood test questionnaire containing questions about their ability to think, work, mood and emotions. For the lithium group, mood test scores increased steadily and significantly during the 4 week period.

The lithium group also reported significantly increased levels of happiness, friendliness and energy. Group B showed no improvement during the same period.

The researchers concluded that low-dose lithium provided a mood-improving and stabilizing effect.[xxii]

Lithium Orotate in the Treatment of Alcoholism

In this study, 42 alcoholic patients were treated with Lithium Orotate during alcohol rehabilitation in a private clinical setting for six months. The data was collected from clinical practice records for the 10 years following the initial study.

The patients received 150 mg of Lithium Orotate daily for six months along with calcium orotate, magnesium orotate, bromelain and essential phospholipids.

Ten of the patients had no relapse from 3 – 10 years. 13 patients stayed sober from 1 – 3 years.  The remaining patients relapsed between 6 – 12 months.

The researchers concluded that Lithium Orotate therapy was safe in treating addiction with minor adverse side effects.[xxiii]

Lithium Orotate Recommended Dosage

Lithium retains a grim and undeserved reputation. Likely because it was originally associated with serious mental illness. And like most medications, lithium can produce serious side effects if not monitored properly.Lithium Orotate formulated by Dr. Hans Nieper

Lithium carbonate or lithium chloride salts are typically prescribed for long-term control and to treat bipolar disorder at 900 – 1200 mg per day. The major problem with such high doses of lithium are some very serious and debilitating side effects.

For nootropic use, I suggest Lithium Orotate which typically contains only 5 mg of elemental lithium. Lithium Orotate is orotic acid combined with lithium.

Orotic acid reportedly makes the lithium more bioavailable than lithium carbonate. The lithium is released once it crosses the blood-brain barrier. So you’ll get the benefits of lithium supplementation while avoiding the toxic side effects of high doses.[xxiv]

Lithium Orotate supplements recommended dose is 5 mg two or three times per day. See “Where to buy Lithium Orotate” for more on lithium amounts in nootropic supplements.

Many neurohackers use Lithium Orotate only as needed. For example, when feeling anxious or in the middle of a mood swing.

For someone with bipolar disorder or manic disorders, increasing to two 5 mg tablets up to 3-times per day may be more effective.

Naturopathic doctors suggest stacking 1,000 mg of Omega-3 and 400 UI of Vitamin E (as mixed tocopherols) each day you’re using Lithium Orotate.

Lithium Orotate Side Effects

Do not confuse Lithium Orotate with lithium carbonate. The carbonate version of lithium is only available by prescription and comes with a host of side effects.

Prescription lithium used in excess has been shown to have adverse effects on thyroid and kidney function. This is NOT a problem when supplementing with Lithium Orotate when used at recommended dosages.

Lithium Orotate at low doses is non-toxic and lab tests are not required to monitor your lithium levels because it does not show up in blood samples.

Lithium Orotate should not be used if you are dealing with significant renal or cardiovascular disease, severe dehydration or sodium depletion, or if you’re taking diuretics or ACE inhibitors.

Do not use Lithium Orotate if you are pregnant or breast-feeding.

You should check with your doctor if you are on any medication before using Lithium Orotate.

Where to Buy Lithium Orotate

Mother Nature has already put the antipsychotic “drug” lithium in drinking water. And you get some lithium from food depending on where it’s grown.

Supplemental Lithium Orotate typically comes in 120 or 130 mg capsules or tablets containing 5 mg of elemental lithium.

I recommend and use Lithium Orotate by Advanced Research (Amazon) which was formulated by Dr. Hans Nieper.

Nootropics Expert Recommendation

Nootropics Expert Tested and ApprovedLithium Orotate 5 mg 2 or 3 times per day.

I recommend using Lithium Orotate as a nootropic supplement if you’re feeling anxious or depressed. Or experiencing mood swings.

Your body does not make lithium on its own. So you must get this essential trace mineral from your diet, or a supplement like Lithium Orotate

Lithium combined with orotic acid makes Lithium Orotate which readily crosses the blood-brain barrier, and you should feel its effects within 15 – 20 minutes of taking it.

Lithium Orotate is especially effective if you’re feeling stressed, or mentally overworked. Your brain uses lithium faster and it needs to be replaced. Which you can do by using Lithium Orotate.

Lithium Orotate is great if you are ADHD because lithium calms the hyperactivity in your brain.

Lithium supplements do not change your state of consciousness. It simply helps bring you back to feeling normal and happy.

I suggest trying Lithium Orotate as a nootropic supplement with your first dose at 5 mg and see how you react. If you experience no negative reaction, try another 5 mg in a few hours. Up to 3 – 5 mg doses per day.

You’ll likely experience the full benefits of Lithium Orotate within a week of consistent use.

I recommend and use Lithium Orotate by Advanced Research (Amazon).

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This post may also contain other affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

[i] Boesgaard A.M., Steigman G. (1985). “Big bang nucleosynthesis – Theories and observations”. Annual Review of Astronomy and Astrophysics. Palo Alto, CA. 23: 319–378. (source)

[ii] Swann A.C. “Norepinephrine and (Na+, K+)-ATPase: evidence for stabilization by lithium or imipramine.” Neuropharmacology. 1988 Mar;27(3):261-7. (source)

[iii] Herbert V., Colman N. “Release of vitamin binding proteins from granulocytes by lithium: vitamin B12 and folate binding proteins.” Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology. 1980;127:61-78. (source)

[iv] Young W. “Review of lithium effects on brain and blood.” Cell Transplantation. 2009;18(9):951-75. (source)

[v] Schrauzer G.N., Shrestha K.P. “Lithium in drinking water and the incidences of crimes, suicides, and arrests related to drug addictions.” Biological Trace Element Research. 1990 May;25(2):105-13. (source)

[vi] Ohgami H., Terao T., Shiotsuki I., Ishii N., Iwata N. “Lithium levels in drinking water and risk of suicide.” British Journal of Psychiatry. 2009 May;194(5):464-5 (source)

[vii] Blüml V., Regier M.D., Hlavin G., Rockett I.R., König F., Vyssoki B., Bschor T., Kapusta N.D. “Lithium in the public water supply and suicide mortality in Texas.” Journal of Psychiatric Research. 2013 Mar;47(3):407-11. (source)

[viii] Terao T., Goto S., Inagaki M., Okamoto Y. “Even very low but sustained lithium intake can prevent suicide in the general population?”  Medical Hypotheses. 2009 Nov;73(5):811-2 (source)

[ix] Cade J.F.J. “Lithium Salts in the Treatment of Psychotic Excitement” The Medical Journal of Australia Vol. II No. 10, September 3, 1949 (source)

[x] Wada A. “Lithium and neuropsychiatric therapeutics: neuroplasticity via glycogen synthase kinase-3beta, beta-catenin, and neurotrophin cascades.” Journal of Pharmacological Sciences. 2009 May;110(1):14-28. (source)

[xi] Kaidanovich-Beilin O., Milman A., Weizman A., Pick C.G., Eldar-Finkelman H. “Rapid antidepressive-like activity of specific glycogen synthase kinase-3 inhibitor and its effect on beta-catenin in mouse hippocampus.” Biological Psychiatry. 2004 Apr 15;55(8):781-4. (source)

[xii] O’Brien W.T., Harper A.D., Jové F., Woodgett J.R., Maretto S., Piccolo S., Klein P.S. “Glycogen synthase kinase-3beta haploinsufficiency mimics the behavioral and molecular effects of lithium.” Journal of Neuroscience. 2004 Jul 28;24(30):6791-8. (source)

[xiii] Collingridge G.L, Watkins J.C. “The NMDA Receptor.” New York: Oxford Univ. Press; 1994.

[xiv] Chuang D., Christ L., Fujimaki K., Hashimoto R., Jeong M.R. “Lithium-induced inhibition of Src tyrosine kinase in rat cerebral cortical neurons: A role in neuroprotection against N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor-mediated excitotoxicity”. FEBS Letters 2003; 538(1-3): 45-148 (source)

[xv] Manji H.K, Chen G., Moore G.J. “Lithium at 50: Have the neuroprotective effects of this unique cation been overlooked?” Biological Psychiatry 1999; 46(7): 929-940 (source)

[xvi] Leeds P.R., Yu F., Wang Z., Chiu C., Zhang Y., Leng Y., Linares G.R., Chuang D. “A New Avenue for Lithium: Intervention in Traumatic Brain Injury” ACS Chemical Neuroscience. 2014 Jun 18; 5(6): 422–433. (source)

[xvii] Schrauzer G.N. “Lithium: occurrence, dietary intakes, nutritional essentiality.” Journal of the American College of Nutrition. 2002 Feb;21(1):14-21. (source)

[xviii] Concha G., Broberg K., Grandér M., Cardozo A., Palm B., Vahter M. “High-level exposure to lithium, boron, cesium, and arsenic via drinking water in the Andes of northern Argentina.” Environmental Science and Technology. 2010 Sep 1;44(17):6875-80 (source)

[xix] Angelucci F., Aloe L., Jiménez-Vasquez P., Mathé A.A. “Lithium treatment alters brain concentrations of nerve growth factor, brain-derived neurotrophic factor and glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor in a rat model of depression.” International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology. 2003 Sep;6(3):225-31. (source)

[xx] Aydin K., Uysal S., Yakut A., Emiroglu B., Yılmaz F. “N-acetylaspartate concentration in corpus callosum is positively correlated with intelligence in adolescents.” Neuroimage. 2012 Jan 16;59(2):1058-64 (source)

[xxi] Yucel K., McKinnon M.C., Taylor V.H, Macdonald K., Alda M., Young L.T., MacQueen G.M. “Bilateral hippocampal volume increases after long-term lithium treatment in patients with bipolar disorder: a longitudinal MRI study.” Psychopharmacology (Berlin). 2007 Dec;195(3):357-67 (source)

[xxii] Schrauzer G.N., de Vroey E. “ Effects of nutritional lithium supplementation on mood. A placebo-controlled study with former drug users.” Biological Trace Element Research. 1994 Jan;40(1):89-101. (source)

[xxiii] Sartori H.E. “Lithium orotate in the treatment of alcoholism and related conditions.” Alcohol. 1986 Mar-Apr;3(2):97-100. (source)

[xxiv] Lakhan S., Vieira K.F. “Nutritional therapies for mental disorders” Nutrition Journal 2008; 7: 2. (source)

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Join The Discussion - 683 comments

November 13, 2019

Hi David,my son is 24 year old and he has OCD.His therapy is 45mg Prozak,1,5mg Risset and 4mg Diazepam.Can he take Lithium Orotate for OCD?And what else can you suggest for his condition,because we dont have improvments with mentioned therapy.

    David Tomen
    November 13, 2019

    Olivera, best place to check for interactions between drugs and nootropics like Lithium Orotate is here: Enter the drug name then scroll through the drugs and supplements it is contraindicated for. They are in alphabetical order.

    I suggest you use the search function top right of Nootropics Expert for “OCD” and “Obsessive Compulsive Disorder” as two separate searches. Several nootropics should show up in your search results. It’ll take some reading to learn how and why each one works for OCD.

      Charlotte Neumann
      December 15, 2019

      Hi David,

      I checked the link you provided, but the interaction checker does not recognize lithium orotate (only carbonate.)

      D’you think it can be taken with escitalopram? Someone on here wrote that lithium increases serotonin levels, so I was wondering.

      You wrote that you learned “the hard way” that you need to be wary of interactions. May one ask what drug interactions you experienced?

      Thanks in advance,


        David Tomen
        December 16, 2019

        Charlotte, lithium is lithium no matter what it is attached to. My first bad experience was my pain management doctor changing an extended release opiate. It never occurred to me that simply a different form or delivery method of a drug would make a difference.

        I ended up in the ER after 2 days of head to toe severe muscle spasms. ER doc could not figure out what was causing it and it wasn’t until I got home and checked the long-form drug facts sheet that comes with many meds. Buried in the fine print was a contraindication with lithium.

        I cut back on the amount of Lithium Orotate I was using to 1 or 2 tablets per day and problem solved.

        I didn’t come across anything about serotonin. And in fact, if you check under “Lithium to the rescue” you’ll find this: “Depression – lithium helps with treatment-resistant depression. In fact, lithium has been shown to improve the effectiveness of antidepressant medications”.

        But according to this is why you cannot use Lithium Orotate with escitalopram:

        December 16, 2019

        Thanks, David, very kind.

        The long QT syndrome – I’ve actually already been tested for long QT interval years ago, when there was some ado about citalopram and other SSRIs.

        And though maybe the form of lithium doesn’t make any difference (sometimes it does of course, with other molecules), the amounts of lithium carbonate that people are prescribed are far higher than what we orotate takers would ingest.

        Still, your story is pretty frightening. You must have had two awful days. And chronic pain, apparently, before that? Would you say you have overcome it with nootropics?

        I will keep such possible interactions in mind, though. And stick to 5 or 10 mg EL.

        Thank you for your articles – you’ve put me on to Lithium Orotate. Together with SAMe and the darn citalopram (wish I could go off it), who knows, I may just get through the winter.

        David Tomen
        December 18, 2019

        Charlotte, some nootropics certainly help deal with chronic pain. Anything that works as an antioxidant or anti-inflammatory helps. But certain conditions like problems with the spine often can only be helped with surgery and physical therapy.

November 12, 2019

David, is it necessary to increase the lithium dose by forming habits? Another question is can I take it without interruption or should I go for a while without taking it and then taking it again? thank you for the informations.

    David Tomen
    November 12, 2019

    Paulini, I do not understand your question about ‘forming habits’. But yes, you can use Lithium Orotate as needed.

October 29, 2019

David, I am 2 months into nootropics. Basically I have this lithium salt, racetams, amino acids, adaptogens, sulbutiamine, vinpocetine… No diagnosis. I am just am empath. Can I take this lithium salt with phenylalanine, cloruracetam, tianeptine sulfate. What can I stack it with? Similar and complementary nootropics?

    David Tomen
    October 30, 2019

    Ray, not sure what you mean by “lithium salt”. Because lithium carbonate or lithium chloride salts are typically prescribed for long-term control of bipolar disorder and come with a host of side effects.

    If you mean Lithium Orotate you’re talking about a completely different thing. Did you take the time to read this review from top to bottom? This supplement provides 5 mg of elemental lithium. It doesn’t even show up on blood tests.

    But here’s the thing … Lithium Orotate should not be used if you are dealing with significant renal or cardiovascular disease, severe dehydration or sodium depletion, or if you’re taking diuretics or ACE inhibitors.

    Do not use Lithium Orotate if you are pregnant or breast-feeding.

    If none of those apply to you then you should be able to stack it with the rest of the nootropics you are using. As long as you follow dosage recommendations.

    Lithium Orotate has no “complementary nootropics”. It’s an alkali metal and is one of the minerals your body needs.

Eddie Garza
October 20, 2019

Hi David, I just had my serum level of lithium checked this past week and my results demonstrated that am deficient. My lithium levels came back <.03 mmol/L, on a reference range of .06-1.2 mmol/L. I purchased lithium orotate yesterday, 5mg per dosage. I want to take the lithium at 3 times a day and then retest my levels in a month. Since I am deficient should I go at a higher dosage or start with 5mg, 3x daily and then determine after the retest on whether I should increase the dosage. My serotonin level was also deficient, which I read is related to lithium levels. Any comments are appreciated.

    David Tomen
    October 21, 2019

    Eddie, you can use higher doses of Lithium Orotate but it depends on other supplements and meds you are using if that’s wise. I’d keep the dose to max. 10 mg up to 3-times per day and see how that works.

    And the easiest way to boost serotonin is with 500 mg L-Tryptophan before bed.

      October 22, 2019

      Thanks David. I appreciate it. Once I get my lithium up I want to start taking the B12 supplementation based on my genetic report recommendation. Then I’ll check my folate and then add that if needed. I will retest my lithium in about 5 weeks and update. Great website!


      PS: How long do you think it will take to balance my lithium? I am shooting for 0.8 mmol/L.

        David Tomen
        October 23, 2019

        Eddie, I don’t think there is any accurate way to predict how long it’ll take to get your Lithium levels optimal. It depends on your biology, genes, diet, and other stuff we aren’t even aware of I’m sure. So be patient and stick with your plan. You’ll get there.

        October 23, 2019

        Thanks David, I appreciated your input. Take care.


        April 23, 2020

        Hi David, I recently retested my lithium levels they there were still under the lower range. Lab results: LITHIUM <0.3 L Reference Range: 0.6-1.2 mmol/L. I was taking 10mg of lithium daily before the lab test and since it didn't make a dent on my levels I upped the dosage to 20mg after I got my results back. I've only been on 20mg lithium daily for a week, but I feel better. I feel more like myself, not as stressed. Not sure if the extra lithium is why, but I haven't changed much except I've been doing breathing exercises. Just wanted to update my status. Glad you are okay. Thanks.

        David Tomen
        April 25, 2020

        Thanks for the update Eddie. And that you’re making progress.

October 17, 2019

Hi David
My 35 yr old son has been diagnosed with Bipolar 1disorder. He is taking lithium carbonate 600mg twice a day. A nutritionist recommended that he add 10 5mg pills of lithium oratate a day. Is this a safe dosage with his rx lithium? And if so shoukd he take the 10 all at once?

    David Tomen
    October 17, 2019

    Donna, 10 x 5 mg Lithium Orotate is only 50 mg of elemental lithium. Compared to 600 mg lithium carbonate. It’s like comparing apples to oranges in one sense because these two types of lithium seem to work differently. With Lithium Orotate even at higher doses not being toxic.

    In your case I need to defer to your nutritionist who is more qualified than I to determine the best Lithium Orotate dosage. But if 10 tablets makes you uncomfortable then start out with 5 and see how he feels.

      Jay D
      March 29, 2020

      David, you’re wrong on this by comparing 50mg elemental lithium with 600mg lithium carbonate. 600mg lithium carbonate is roughly 112mg of elemental lithium and rest carbonate. (18.8% of 600mg lithium carbonate). 10 x 5mg is a lot of elemental lithium without blood testing.

        David Tomen
        March 30, 2020

        Jay, I’ve been known to be wrong before. But in this case I think you misinterpreted what I was saying. I never mentioned the amount of elemental zinc in lithium carbonate which is a prescription drug. Only that some have had success using Lithium Orotate instead and which can be bought over the counter.

        Someone being treated for bipolar disorder or mania may need higher doses of Lithium Orotate than what is recommended for nootropic use. Which is 5 mg 2 or 3-times per day. Higher doses for treating a disorder should be done in cooperation with a doctor and certainly with regular labs done.

        Jay D
        March 30, 2020

        Oh sorry. It looked like you were comparing the 50mg to the 600mg. I have a diagnosis for bipolar although not sure it’s right but I respond well to quetiapine. I also really like CBD. May I ask you David while you’re on, what would you recommend for struggling to concentrate on a task due to nagging thoughts? Then I have to move onto something else as a result. Thanks!

        David Tomen
        March 31, 2020

        Jay, see this post for ideas on focus and concentration:

        As for “nagging thoughts” the only thing I’ve found to be effective (in addition to the nootropics) I use is meditation. There’s only so much we can do with supplements. After that I takes discipline and commitment to get a grip on how our mind works. And likes to get out of control.

September 12, 2019

Hi everybody,
I would like to report my experience here. I am a 48yo male. Since I know myself I have always suffered from racing mind, anger and moodiness.
Last week, by chance, I started reading about lithium orotate and after a few weeks I decided to buy it and give it a try.

Now, all I can think of is…why haven’t I found out about this mineral before? After taking the very first pill, within a couple of hours all of the above mentioned issues disappeared. I am still trying to determine if it is a kind of placebo effect or not, but maybe I dare hope that something good is at work in my body, namely lithium orotate.

This supplement is weird because it is not like taking a sleeping pill. You know if a sleeping pill is working because you feel sleepy. With this supplement instead you have to pay extra attention to your mind and mood and see and understand if the supplment works for you.

I take a 5mg pill before going to bed but now I am thinking to take it in the morning because it gives me slight insomina (which is funny because from what I have read it should work the other way around and make you sleepy!).
The first day I took it, it also gave me a minor headache. The second day this symptom didnt show up.

I am feeling extremely well. No anger so far, no swing mood. No sweating (when I used to be in anger mode I used to sweat sometimes) and above all, really, seriously, I have stopped overthinking (racing mind).

Now my life belong to me and not to my useless thoughts that kept me busy thinking about stupid things that happened 10 years ago or fantasizing about things that never happened!

This welness brings me tears in my eyes because it makes me think: “How much of my life has been stolen by my issues.” Over thinking, racing mind used to steal hours from my days and were also eroding and mining my family relationships…..

I have a couple of questions though, and I hope to get a reply here:

1) Does this supplement build up over time? I mean, after, let’s say, a month, do I have to stop taking it to let my body getting rid of the extra amount that builded up in it, or I can gon on taking it every day???

2) I am on 5 mg pill. Should I try to take another pill as a try or not?

Thanks and…. peace

    David Tomen
    September 12, 2019

    Frank, thanks for sharing your experience with this amazing nootropic supplement that most people don’t know about. Lithium Orotate comes with a standard 5 mg elemental lithium. You will not find a supplement with a higher amount of elemental lithium. The next step up is lithium carbonate dosed at 800 – 900 mg lithium for treating things like bipolar disorder.

    This mineral is essential for human and animal health. You can take 2 – 3 doses daily forever without any issues. I’ve been using it daily for a couple of years since I discovered it and it keeps on working.

August 27, 2019

Hi David, you suggest dosing with 5mg lithium orotate, but suggest a supplement that’s 120mg lithium orotate with 5mg of bioavailable lithium, so, I am confused. Are you saying “use the 120mg lithium orotate pill to get 5mg lithium” or that we should instead take 1/60th of the dose of the pill?

    David Tomen
    August 27, 2019

    Robert, Lithium Orotate tablets and capsules all supply about 5 mg elemental lithium. But have you ever actually measured 5 mg and seen the size of it? Oratic acid seems to radically boost the bioavailability of lithium and also makes a good filler so it can be delivered in capsule or tablet form.

      August 28, 2019

      Hi David, thanks for the reply. I re-read the article, slower on the second time, and noticed that when you reference 5mg, you mean the lithium content, and when you reference 120mg or more, you are talking about the amount of the compound, lithium orotate.

      Thanks again. I just started last night, took third a pill (gel cap, two thirds emptied by me), almost 2/3 a pill this morning, and will continue with a full 5mg pill tomorrow.

      Do you suggest or prefer upon waking or before bed? Would it be helpful with sleep? (I also take 1-3mg melatonin, and 1/3 dose magnesium threonate before bed).

        David Tomen
        August 29, 2019

        Robert, some take Lithium Orotate “as needed” like if they feel a mood swing coming on. And others take it 2 or 3 times per day (i.e. morning, noon and evening). The dose is so low that it really doesn’t matter when you take it because your body and brain need lithium.

        3 mg of melatonin is like far too much. The human brain only uses 0.5 – 0.8 mg at night. Any more can be bad news. But it depends on you respond to melatonin.

        Magnesium should be 400 mg before bed.

        August 29, 2019

        Thanks again! I’m almost spot on, on the magnesium (425 seems to be what I could find for threonate). I’d been doing 1mg melatonin (sublingually), and just increased. I will drop that back down.

August 18, 2019

Thank you for such an informative site. My son is taking 5 mg Amlodipine. I read your referral to regarding combining lithium orotate with Amlodipine but of course that is in reference to prescription lithium. My son has been taking lith orotate for several years and he feels better with it. He only recently – 2 weeks ago – began with the blood pressure med. He wants to keep taking lith orotate. I don’t know how to evaluate his taking lith orotate with the amlodipine since drugs. com is referring to the prescription lithium. I’ve read all you have written about how lith orotate doesn’t even show up on a blood test. Just wondering if my son can resume taking the lith orotate with the bp med. Thanks

    David Tomen
    August 18, 2019

    Cheryl, I’m not aware of any contraindication with Lithium Orotate and blood pressure meds.

      August 19, 2019

      Thanks David. 🙂

      January 18, 2020

      Hi David- in the video you said not to take if you are on ACE inhibitors. My husband is on 20 mg of Benazepril, which is a blood pressure med, and also an ACE inhibitor. But, in this comment you say you no of no interactions with blood pressure meds. Any advice? Thank you! 🙂

        January 18, 2020

        David, my husband is also on Depakote in addition to the Benazepril. We are wanting to start the Lithium ASAP due to a severe episode he experienced this week with depression. I have it on order and it is due to arrive tomorrow. Any advice/ recommendations you can give concerning these meds would be so appreciative. The website for medicine interactions does not recognize Lithium Orotate. I called a pharmacist and she had no idea you could get any form of Lithium over the counter and actually seemed horrified at the idea. I’m thinking we may run into this with most conventional doctors, and also time is of the element. We do plan on letting his physicians know that he is taking it, but not sure they will have a lot of understanding about it. THANK YOU so very much! This is something that is giving us hope!

        David Tomen
        January 19, 2020

        Robyn, this is the drug interaction checker I prefer to use that’s run by a couple of pharmacists in New Zealand:

        Look up each drug and the complete list of associated interactions. If it lists “lithium” it also applies to Lithium Orotate.

        Most of the time they are referring to things like Lithium Carbonate and others which are prescribed in much higher doses (i.e. 800 mg). But it still applies in some cases.

        For example, my pain doc put me on another long-acting med a few months ago. And I didn’t bother to closely look at the sheet that came with it. You know the longgggg sheet of really small print?

        I ended up in the ER with severe muscle spasms from head to toe. Just like I experienced a year ago when I ended up in the ER with sepsis. But without the 106-degree temp.

        All the labs came up negative. The ER doc was convinced I was hyperthyroid. I’m not. I’m hypothyroid. So that wasn’t it. It wasn’t until I got home and decided to read that long, small print sheet. And it said the combo of that drug and lithium can cause “muscle spasms”.

        I’m telling you this long story because if I’d only used 1 or 2 Lithium Orotate tablets per day I likely would not have went through that experience. I was using 5 – 6 tablets per day. But even 6 tablets is only 30 mg of elemental lithium. And not 800 mg. But with this drug it made a difference.

        So my advice is check the drug interaction checker. Then decide if you want to try Lithium Orotate. If you do, start with 1 tablet first and see if there is any side effects. I am NOT recommending using Lithium Orotate because I’m not qualified and it wouldn’t be fair to you. But if you do anyway this is the least risky approach.

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