Nowtropic Review Summary
Nowtropic has an excellent formula. It’s ingredients are well-balanced, and it covers everything from focus and memory to anxiety reduction and overall brain health.
The inclusion of DMAE will perhaps turn out to be a bit of a mistake when more research is done into whether or not it has anti-cholinergenic properties. But then again, it might not.
What I am confident of is the fact that Nowtropic is not suitable for pregnant or breastfeeding women.
Where to buy Nowtropic
Nowtropic’s website is probably the best port of call.
Full Nowtropic Review
Nowtropic reviews have suddenly popped up everywhere. I therefore had to once again allow a product to “jump the queue” and get a review in right away.
At first glance, it looks like I’m going to be quite impressed with this product. The manufacturers don’t seem to be making any ridiculous claims on their website.
We’re just told that it’s a “neuroenhancement nootropic”. We’re also told that it contains some key choline-boosting ingredients, and that it is caffeine free.
The top banner displays an array of badges representing the various registrations and guarantees that support the product.
The label, however, gives us a list of more concrete benefits we can expect from taking Nowtropic. Curiously, they’re all alliterative:
- Fast-acting focus formula
- Amplify attention alertness
- Cognitive creativity catalyst
- Enhance energetic essence
- Activate awareness ability
- Maximise motivational memory
- Peak performance productivity
Now, I’m probably not the only one who finds this a little bit…off-putting.
I can only assume that the people who wrote this label were joking, and I don’t really expect that from a professional supplement. Some of these don’t even make sense. The back label is even worse in terms of being vaguely tongue-in-cheek and largely incoherent:
Nonetheless, this product has got some rave reviews, so it deserves our full attention.
Let’s take a closer look and see if it looks like it can live up to the hype. Here’s my full Nowtropic review.
Before I get stuck into analysing the formula, here’s the ingredient list taken from the label:
For starters, I always like to see a detailed breakdown of a product’s formula.
It’s all well and good giving us a list of 40 weird and wonderful nootropic substances. But if 39 of them make up 0.1% of the formula, with the remainder being caffeine, we’re not going to get any benefit out of the supplement.
So, already, Nowtropic is ahead of so many other nootropics out there that claim to be miraculous brain boosting formulas without ever divulging their contents.
A quick review of Nowtropic’s main ingredients throws up some really interesting substances. Here’s a quick overview of the main ingredients:
Cognizin: This is often written as Citicoline or CDP-Choline. This is a key ingredient for any serious nootropic stack. It has multiple mechanisms of action, but it is usually included as a cholinergenic, meaning that it helps elevate acetylcholine availability in the brain. Very simply put, more acetylcholine means a better functioning memory and better brain cell maintenance.
Although Alpha-GPC is a more efficient way of raising acetylcholine abundance, citicoline is also a precursor of uridine; another really impressive nootropic substance. I have written a dedicated blog post entirely about uridine, such is its potential importance.
Folic Acid: The scientific community is now essentially at a consensus about the nootropic benefits of regular folic acid supplementation. Taking B vitamins that lower the level of homocysteine found in the blood has been shown in clinical studies to prevent brain atrophy; the literal withering away of the brain. Folic acid supplementation is therefore particularly important for people in later life.
DMAE bitartate: In the brain, DMAE is synthesised into phosphatidylcholine. This compound is a very important component of nerve endings. As such, DMAE is directly involved in the maintenance of physical brain structures. While many believe it is a cholinergenic able to improve memory in a similar way to Alpha-GPC, there is in fact little evidence to support this (as far as I am aware).
There are, however, some serious concerns to consider when contemplating taking DMAE with choline compounds, or on its own for a long period of time. I will come to these in a later section.
Bacopa monnieri: Regular readers will know just how much I like this common natural nootropic stack ingredient. Bacopa is a well-established emory enhancer, but it does not work on the acetylcholine path to better memory function. It also helps reduce anxiety, and it is a potent anti-oxidant. The inclusion of Bacopa in Nowtropic’s formula really rounds the product off in my opinion. You can learn more about Bacopa on the Natural Nootropic dedicated ingredients page.
GABA: GABA is one of those ingredients that you could say is a good idea on paper, but pretty useless in practice. Taking GABA-rich chlorella has been shown in one study to reliably reduce hypertension. However, taking GABA orally might be an ineffective way of increasing GABA availability in the brain. GABA found in the blood has very low uptake in brain tissue, and blood-brain permeability seems minimal. In fact, researchers are dedicated more time to studying GABA’s effect on growth hormone production than as a treatment for hypertension. I think that is quite telling, seeing as comparatively few people die as a result of growth hormone depletion.
Oat Straw: Oat Straw is, in my opinion, a damn good ingredient for anyone’s nootropic stack. It is widely considered a remedy for anxiety, and it is commonly found in professional quality nootropic stacks, such as Alpha Brain. It’s long been used as a natural nootropic supplement.
Ashwagandha Root: Like Oat Straw, this is an age-old anxiety remedy. Many herbal anxiolytic substances are weak when taken on their own, so the inclusion of two long-used and robustly natural tested stress reducers is a big positive of this formula.
Review of Nowtropic dose sizes
For starters, the secondary or ‘accessory’ ingredients like Oat Straw, Ashwagandha Root, and vinpocetine should be sufficient to prevent anxiety and keep you clear headed, calm, and focused all day long.
Ashwagandha Root’s effective dose is usually around 300mg according to examine.com, but that is when taking the herbal extract by itself.
Vinpocetine is usually needed in greater quantities than 5mg, but it is merely there to compliment the Oat Straw and the Ashwagandha. In this instance, 5mg should be fine.
250mg of Cognizin and 100mg of Alpha-GPC is more than enough to guarantee that acetylcholine availability is sufficient, but the inclusion of 100ug of Huperzine A really puts the last nail in the coffin.
I would say that 100mg of Alpha-GPC is a little low in normal circumstances. Some nootropics I have reviewed, like Nootrobox RISE, contain as much as 300mg of Alpha-GPC.
However, products that contain one cholinergenic compound very rarely contain two. They certainly don’t usually contain two plus a acetylcholinesterase inhibitor like Huperzine A.
With all of those substances contributing to elevated acetylcholine levels, I think your memory will be as good as it can possibly be.
But that isn’t all that’s in Nowtropic.
DMAE in Nowtropic – cause for concern?
The more digging I do into the mechanisms of DMAE, the more I find completely contradictory theories.
On the one hand, most nootropic websites tell you that DMAE is a cholinergenic compound, meaning that supplementing DMAE leads to higher choline levels in the brain.
This usually means that it will promote acetylcholine and phosphatidylcholine availability, which in turn will allow the brain to perform optimally.
However, I have found several studies recently which suggest that DMAE may be anti-cholinergenic. To quote one prominent study in the FASEB Journal: “Our results with DMAE are consistent with previous reports that DMAE is a competitive inhibitor of choline uptake and transport and an inhibitor of choline kinase.”
That same study concluded that DMAE caused birth defects in mouse embryos, which could in theory apply to human embryos as well. Hence the warning about pregnant and breastfeeding women at the beginning!
While this controversy needs further research to really settle, it is the unpredictability of DMAE that is the most troubling.
Many people I have spoken to claim to have had very negative experiences when taking DMAE. This is true of many LongeCity registered users as well. Here is a classic example:
As you can see, this guy is a LongeCity moderator, so we can definitely trust that he isn’t marketing anything here. His opinion is very measured, and it’s pretty similar to what a lot of people are saying about DMAE: short term benefits quickly disappear, and sometimes it just doesn’t work at all:
The more I see this, the more I think DMAE is largely a placebo.
This ambiguity about its effectiveness is made much worse but he many users reporting downright negative side effects from using DMAE. For instance:
This user got some benefits out of taking DMAE, as you would expect from a choline analogue. But for me, the downsides here significantly outweigh the positives.
Of course, this person was taking about 400mg daily. That is huge compared to Nowtropic’s 50mg daily serving.I think this makes side effects very unlikely when taking Nowtropic, but I also think it means that the DMAE will just do nothing.
Bear in mind though, this is a Nowtropic review, not a DMAE review. Nowtropic contains many more ingredients than DMAE. It just may be the case that DMAE inhibits the cholinergenic effects of taking Cognizin, and taking it in large amounts for a long time might produce side effects. More research is clearly needed here.
My thoughts on Nowtropic
It contains plenty of the ingredients I look for in well-rounded, natural and reliable brain supplements. There’s plenty of Huperzine A, Cognizin, and Bacopa monnieri; three of my favourite nootropic agents.
They may seem under-dosed to some people, but they are actually perfectly dosed for me. I have no problem losing a bit of potency if it means I’m less likely to experience any side effects from taking this stuff.
If you take these substances in these dosages for a number of weeks, I think you;re bound to experience some kind of cognitive enhancement. Your memory will probably become more expansive and rapid on the recall, and your ability to focus for long periods of time will improve.
The inclusion of folic acid is, for me, a great move. The evidence supporting folic acid’s neuroprotective properties is overhwelming, and the link between folic acid deficiency and mental decline is in my opinion as strong as it is direct.
The anxiolytics in the formula add a really nice finishing touch. The more relaxed we are, the calmer we can be, and the more clearly we can think about complex tasks. Stress is one fo the main reasons why we make mistakes in the first place, and it is awful for your long-term brain health.
DMAE, which I often raise as a concern, is perhaps less worrying with this product, seeing as it is only present in a very small amount.
I do still question its inclusion though. Perceived wisdom is that it helps elevate acetylcholine availability in the brain, but I really can’t find any concrete evidence in support of that notion. I certainly can’t find anything concrete enough to make me discount the studies I have found which suggest the opposite to be the case.
I am also concerned by the many users who experience serious side effects when taking DMAE for extended periods. Particularly as I am only really interested in nootropic stacks that I can take on a daily basis.
Many people do use DMAE on a regular basis without experiencing any negative side effects, but I can just as easily use a stack without DMAE that gives me the same benefits. I am therefore inclined to think: why risk it?
Nowtropic Review conclusion
Overall, not a bad natural nootropic stack.
At the beginning of my Nowtropic review, I thought I was going to be tearing another product apart. But in actuality, I was pleasantly surprised by this product.
The formula strikes a good balance between cholinergenics and acetylcholinesterase inhibitors. It contains plenty of Bacopa monnieri; enough to compliment the memory enhancing effects of Cognizin, but not enough to make side effects a likelihood.
It does contain DMAE, but in an amount small enough that I think it is more of a waste than a concern. I would have used that space to include more Cognizin.
Is Nowtropic a legit supplement?
The main thing you need to consider when wondering whether to buy this products perhaps the shadiness of their website. I haven’t touched upon this yet, but there is something very familiar about the Nowtropic set up that doesn’t seem completely legitimate to me.
I can’t really find anything out about the company that makes it, where they are based, or where the product is made.
The website also uses the same kind of cheap marketing tactics to rush a sale, such as telling you at all times that the product is at a “high risk” of selling out. They make it quite clear that they’ll never sign you up to an auto-subscription, but I’m still not completely comfortable with the way their transaction process is set up.
Anyway, that’s just me. Check it out for yourself and see what you think.
I would definitely consider taking this supplement. It might be worth a try if you’re looking for a quick boost in your cognitive performance, be it your memory, concentration, or mood.