Insomnia and other sleep disorders can greatly affect your quality of life : hormonal problems, fatigue, decreased motivation, lowered libido, bad mood… We really don’t need to remind how sleep is an essential factor in a healthy lifestyle, and how bad sleep can negatively affect your life. We’re not even speaking about athletes and bodybuilders like us who need restful sleep to build muscle, rest the nervous system and let the body recover.
Suffering from insomnia ourselves (rather in periods than constantly and daily, fortunately), and refusing to use sleeping pills for fear of being completely dependent and that their effects would diminish over the years, we looked at another approach : nootropics, which we were already using but for different purposes (bodybuilding).
Today, let’s see how to catch some zzz with nootropics.
1. Nootropics to fall asleep easily
Don’t expect a magic bullet on this part. If a magic supplement existed, its inventor would already be rich by now. However, there are a lot of options that could help you in a significant way. Let’s skip the blabla part and go straight to the point.
We had to check the typo 3 times for this one. What a strange name for this wonderful Ayurvedic herb. Ashwagandha is an adaptogen that have been used for centuries in Ayurvedic medicine, one of the oldest holistic healing systems in the world. It has long been prized for its ability to help the body deal with stress and anxiety. No wonder why it is also called Whitania Somnifera… A recent study showed some powerful and encouraging effects on sleep. You can find this study right here. For the lazy ones (yes, you), the tested doses for the study were as follows : 750 mg/day ×10 days, 1 000 mg/day × 10 days and 1 250 mg/day × 10 days. More than 30% of the volunteers noticed a significant improvement in their ability to fall asleep during the process. Promising, right ? There is also a cool recipe, the Moon Milk, made with Ashwagandha and other ingredients that can help you to fall asleep. You’ll find the recipe right there.
This one is pretty recent compared to Ashwaganda, but it’s already well researched and really promising. Let’s clear some things first. CBD is not psychoactive so you won’t get high taking it. If you’re expecting to get the same effects than with THC, switch to the latter. You’ll never feel high with CBD. Second thing, CBD is legal almost everywhere. You will not go to jail if you’re caught taking it. Let’s switch to what the research say now that things are clear 🙂
A study published in 2019 involved 72 subjects to see if CBD could help with pain and sleep. The subjects were each given 25 milligrams (mg) of CBD in capsule form each day. Sleep scores improved within the first month in 48 patients (66.7%). Even if this study is based on a low amount of subjects, it is really promising and a handful amount of Reddit users reported a better ability to fall asleep with CBD.
2. Nootropics to get a better sleep
Falling asleep is a thing, getting a good and restful sleep is another. We won’t dig into the basics in this post. We all know that a healthy lifestyle, practising sports, eating a lot of vegetables and having your vitamin / hormone levels checked are the first things to do. Let’s assume you already are on top of that. Unfortunately, sometimes this is not enough to get a deep, restful sleep. That’s why we tried nootropics. And we were really surprised with the results. Don’t get us wrong, this is not a magic bullet. But that REALLY helps. No more talk !
We couldn’t write a post about sleep and nootropics without talking about Phenibut. This is probably the most overlooked nootropic for a better sleep. A study published in 2001 clearly explains why Phenibut would be your best option. Unfortunately, this is the only clue we have about it, even if many anecdotal reports are going the same way on Reddit. The best thing about Phenibut is that it works as a sleep enhancer only when you’re going to bed : it means that you won’t feel sleepy or dizzy while taking it. But as soon as you’ll go to bed, you will feel the urge to sleep… and you’ll get a really deep one. Many doctors in Russia already are prescribing it as a sleep aid supplement. Any dose between 250mg and 500mg will do the trick.
Just a quick note about Phenibut : don’t abuse it ! This nootropic is really addictive when taken at high doses and it can really mess with your GABA levels if you abuse it. Try to keep your intake at a 2 / week rate and everything will be okay.
Yes, we know… Magnesium is not a nootropic per se. But it really can help you to get a deeper sleep when taken the right way so we had to add it. Magnesium is already known by many for its numerous benefits on health, including fighting inflammation, relieving constipation and lowering blood pressure. But there is more : Magnesium can help treat sleep problems. On a chemical level, magnesium aids the process of falling asleep by activating the parasympathetic nervous system, the system responsible for getting you calm and relaxed. Moreover, a lack of Magnesium can cause a troubled and agitated sleep. Now you probably get why this one is really important.
A study published in 2012 also showed that taking 500mg of Magnesium before sleep induced a deep and restful sleep, as well with a higher level of melatonin, also know as the sleep hormon. This is partially due to this mineral’s influence on the nervous system.
” What ? How a focus cognitive enhancing supplement could help me with a better sleep ? “. Careful, we can hear you. More seriously, this one is a bit controversial but several studies (like this one) proved that Aniracetam can help to get a better sleep for some people. At a dose of 30 mg/kg per day, Aniracetam increased REM sleep in the light period after administration for 5 consecutive days.
Even if some studies are still going on as of now, the first results are really impressive and many users on Reddit are noticing a more restful sleep with Aniracetam. We tried it several times and were really surprised with the results.
And… That’s it for this post on sleep and nootropics ! We really hope you found some great information in this one. Don’t hesitate to post a comment to let us know if you liked it.
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