Nootropics are a hot topic at the moment and have slowly become more and more talked about in many circles. Certainly for me, I first came across nootropics many years ago in the early days of ONNIT, listening to Joe Rogan talk about the benefits of using Alpha Brain.
Nootropics have also moved into pop culture with super nootropics used to dramatise films like Limitless(2011) and Lucy(2014).
What are Nootropics?
Nootropics actually have a few definitions but the most widely agreed upon is that they are drugs that improve cognitive function such as memory, focus and analytical skills. There are hundreds of products out there on the market and Alpha Brain is one of the most well known options out there
Alpha Brain is made by ONNIT over in the US and you can head on over to ONNIT here, to read about the ingredients and studies which they have conducted.
Everybody learns and absorbes information through different learning styles. Some people prefer to read, while others learn better by having hands on experience. I certainly fall in to the “hands on” group and have always been good at watching something being done and remembering it or simply getting stuck in and learning as I go.
On the flip side, I really do not take as much in by reading information, it just won’t stick no matter how many times I read it.
It’s because of that I decided to try Alpha Brain to help me study for a networking exam back in 2011. The first batch I ever had was in the original white bottle which I still think looks better than the new brown that ONNIT bottle everything in.
The first batch I tried was the 30 capsule bottle and lasted about 2 weeks with regular use. I would say usually within 20-30 mins of taking 2 capsules I noticed a difference in my cognitive function, especially in my ability to focus and complete tasks. In the first 2 weeks that I used Alpha Brain, leading up to my CCNA exam I noticed the following.
- Increased Focus
- Increased Productivity
- Increased Memory Capacity
At full force, I would sit down to begin studying and working through some network topics and without noticing, I would have easily let 3 or 4 hours go past without looking up from the book or computer. AB really does give me the ability to focus on the task in hand and become so immersed that you really do not notice how long you have been grinding away.
I’ve read a few reviews which claim that the product works better after prolonged use but I really never saw any difference between the first day and day 14. Actually, if anything I felt the effects would dwindle as you got more used to the product.
The only downside for me was the price, mainly because it had to be imported from the US and so you would often have to pay additional import tax.
Fast forward to 2016
Years later I found myself preparing for another exam and needed a little help to improve my revision and studying. I looked online and ONNIT now has a uk distributer meaning no more costly import taxes(You can now order from XBrain in the UK).
For the first month I took Alpha Brain every day, 3 pills a day and for the second month I took it ONLY when I was studying and again, I saw no difference in how well it worked.
When using the product I found the same benefits as before with improved memory and focus and so I decided to supplement my reading with Alpha Brain to help me remember key areas.
To try and measure its effectiveness I took small practice exams on paper before reading each chapter of the book i was using to study, and then took the same exams again straight after and of course showed improvement in my results, clearly my results would most likely improve even without AB but the improvement was typically extreme with 40%-50% gain in my results. I decided to test my self more.
I let a few days go by and took the test again without taking Alpha Brain and found my score got worse and I really struggled with subjects I knew just a few days before. The questions are randomised to make sure they aren’t exactly the same but the topics are the same.
I wanted to test this further so I let a few more days pass and sat a test exam again but this time I had taken Alpha Brain before the test. Just as before, my score was much higher and my memory of the content was much clearer.
I carried on using AB for study right up until my exam and of course used it during and I’m pleased to say I passed first time. Based on my usage of the product I really feel that using AB does indeed increase my ability to absorb new information but i also need to use the product when I know I am likely to be using the information I have learned. It seems to help unlock that information much better which is why I suppose it is also advertised as a memory improvement product.
I continue to notice an improvement in my productivity when using AB and often use it when working towards a deadline or meeting with clients. I find it really helps connect the dots when trying to converse on a technical topic and gets me into the “zone” when working on written documents.
Based on the testing I have done and my usage I would say without a doubt that it does what it claims however it’s not the cheapest product and I really do not think you need to use it everyday to see results. Simply take it as needed and use it sparingly(despite what ONNIT marketing says). If you are on a budget, you can also strip out the ingredients and order them in bulk from a whole host of nootropic retailers, then repackage in your own capsules. You’ll find it much cheaper to make your own if you plan on using it long term.
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