Rhodiola Rosea: A Superherb Among Nootropics

Rhodiola Rosea is a plant that has remarkable stress relieving and antidepressant properties and is considered equivalent to some of the most potent nootropics and brain stimulating supplements.


Rhodiola Rosea with common names such as Golden Root and Roseroot is an adaptogenic herb and a nootropic agent. It has been used in traditional medicines in Russian and Scandinavian countries from centuries. Rhodiola Rosea is widely used as a treatment for fatigue, poor concentration and memory loss. It is also believed to increase the learning skills by stimulating the brain and also productivity of workers.

Studies reveal its benefits for relieving pain, headache, scurvy, hemorrhoids and as an anti-inflammatory analgesic.

In this article, we are going to explore how Rhodiola Rosea works and benefits your brain.

Mechanism of action

There are two possible ways according to scientists in which Rhodiola Rosea works in our brain.

• According to a study, Rhodiola Rosea sustains some brain hormones or neurotransmitters such as norepinephrine, serotonin and dopamine. All of these brain chemicals are essential for speed of cognitive processing, mind alertness, mood and memory. This plant is considered to modulate the mono-amine oxidase enzymes that would otherwise destroy these brain hormones.

• The second one is that Rhodiola has also been suggested to be helpful in maintaining the neurotransmitter acetylcholine by inhibiting ACHe. It is an enzyme that degrades acetcylcholine.

Miracle Plant
How does it affect the brain?

• Improves Brain Function

This plant contains some active ingredients such as rosin, rosavin and rosarian. These are the principal compounds available in the roots and rhizome of this plant. Studies show that extract from rhodiola rosea plant exhibits neuro-protective and nootropics effects on brain. This is the reason behind its use to increase the cognitive skills and as a brain stimulant.

• To Decrease the Mental Fatigue

According to studies, this plant also helps to boost the mood by reducing stress, lethargy and mental fatigue. Patients of chronic stress take rhodiola supplement to boost their mental performance. It is also proven to enhance the cognitive energy, stamina and level of concentration for a prolonged period. Therefore, people often take this when they are working on a detail oriented project to multiply their output with the effort.

• To Improve Mood

Rhodiola Rosea boosts up the mood by increasing norepinephrine and serotonin levels in your brain and the feel good hormones like beta-endorphins.

Benefits of Rhodiola rosea

• Neuronal Regeneration

Rhodiola Rosea is helpful in neurogenesis which means that it helps the formation of new neurons. It also helps to repair the old neurons. Another function of this plant is that it activates the synthesis of ATP which is the main energy source of your body and brain cells. Rhodiola Rosea reduces the C-reactive protein which is inflammatory in nature. Furthermore, it protects neurons from free radicals and cell death due to oxidative stress.

• Improve Exercise Performance

Rhodiola also helps to improve exercise performance. In a study, athletes were given 200 mg of this supplement two hours before performing an exercise. The participants with rhodiola were able to perform for an average of 24-25 seconds more than the placebo group.

This study and others show that rhodiola can be used to improve exercise performance by increasing endurance of players and decreasing the exertion. However, the exact mechanism of action of this supplement to have any effect on muscle strength or power is still unknown.

How to start taking these supplements

Rhodiola supplements are widely available in the form of tablets, capsules and extract. It’s also available in the form of powder or dried form to make tea, but some people prefer the supplement in pill form because it enables accurate dosing and time saving method.

Precautionary Measures

Unfortunately, there is always a chance of adulteration in the contents of this supplement. To avoid this, always choose a brand that carries the USP or NSF seal on the pack. These are the organizations with zero profit interest that make sure supplements contain what they claim, without impurities.

Another important thing is to be sure to look at the labels of these supplements and double check they contain a standardized proportions of 3% rosavins and 1% salidrosides. These are the naturally occurring quantities of these components in rhodiola root.

How Much and When to Take It

The best way to take rhodiola supplement is with an empty stomach, but not before bedtime because it has a slightly stimulating effect. The recommended dose of rhodiola to improve symptoms of mental fatigue, stress and depression is from 400 to 600 mg in a single dose per day.
If you want to take rhodiola for as a brain stimulant to enhance your performance then take 200 to 300 mg an hour or two before workout.

Safety of Rhodiola

Rhodiola is a safe to use supplement and generally well tolerated. There are no potential side effects related to this supplement but you must consult your doctor if you experience any change after its use.

Creatine: Muscle building and Brain Boosting?

Nootropics have become excessively popular among those who want to think and perform faster than the others. There is always someone around, maybe a colleague from work or a class topper, who is actively using nootropics. The main purpose of using these supplements is to stimulate your brain and increase the learning capacity.

Creatine is also one of these brain stimulating supplements and is considered to be very effective in this regard. It is stored inside our body and works as energy back up source whenever required.
The purpose of this article is to enlighten you about the important aspects of creatine, so that you become familiar with this supplement in case you are thinking about its use as a brain stimulant.

What is Creatine and how does it work?

Creatine is a natural chemical present in the human body that is formed from the combination of 2 amino acids named arginine and glycine. The main energy currency of our body is Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP) which is an adenosine with 3 attached phosphate groups.

When the body cells need energy, mitochondria (cell power house) separate a phosphate group and it provides energy by breaking the bond that the cell uses to get things done. Now, the ATP is converted into ADP (adenosine Diphosphate), which cannot produce energy for cell functions.

Here’s where creatine comes to the rescue.

As we know that creatine is stored in the body as Creatine-Phosphate. When ATP converts to ADP, it comes in to tackle the situation by providing a phosphate back to ADP so that it can become ATP again and restore its’ energy to use in future.

How creatine Works
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Creatine levels are linked with optimal memory ability

Creatine is a natural energy recycler that is why fitness conscious people use it. It is so effective because it provides your muscles a large amount of energy so that you can work harder and longer. The reason behind this energy boost is that creatine is stored in our body muscles.

The topic is not closed yet..

The other biggest store house of creatine is actually in our brain cells. The brain uses 20 % of body’s total energy every single day and the more we use our brain, the quicker will be drained the ATP reserves.

Creatine comes in picture here again. It helps revive the brain cells in a similar way like in muscles by helping “recharge” the ATP supplies so that the brain can continue to perform well.

Creatine effects on the brain

One study at the University of New Mexico was conducted on learning skills and memorizing ability of children. The main objective of the study was to analyze the ability of brain to hold information for future or long term memory. Scientists worked on children’s brains in an age bracket of 7 to12 years using magnetic resonance spectroscopy and measured different brain neurotransmitters.
The conclusion of study was that children with the high levels of creatine in their brain had a better long term memory.

Creatine improves Cognition

This creatine is also known for its cognition improving effects in human brain. People are normally aware of this supplement due to its muscle fatigue reducing effects and it is consumed by most of them just for workout purposes. Fewer people are aware of the nootropic and neuroprotective effects that creatine supplementation offers.

In sleep deprived rugby players, creatine, given in a dose of 20 grams per day improved their mood and cognitive skills after consuming it regularly for 7 days. According to another study, creatine if taken one week before sleep deprivation combined with moderate workout routine, improves complex cognitive skills in people.

Benefite of Creatine
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Creatine reduces brain fog

A few studies indicate that creatine may reverse the symptoms of brain fog caused by stress hormones, insomnia and circadian rhythm imbalance, which are very common in athletes or in people leading a modern lifestyle.

May be Helpful in Parkinson’s disease

Parkinson disease is related to dopamine levels in brain. It often leads to poor fitness, reduced muscle mass, decreased muscle strength and fatigue. As we are aware of the fact that creatine improves upper body strength and helps to enhance the muscle strength, just like it does in athletes. Creatine is taken in higher doses for 5 days (20 g per day) and then the maintenance dose stays at 5 g per day for patients of Parkinson’s disease. It has proved to be somewhat effective to prevent drop of dopamine level in brain.

Larger clinical trials are required to assess properly if only creatine supplementation can improve the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.

Dose Protocols

The dose is recommended according to a person’s body mass, age and his diet plan. Generally a 2-phase (loading + maintenance) supplementation protocol is followed in clinical practices.
• In loading dose 20 g/day (0.3 grams/kg/day) for 5 – 7 days is taken
• In the maintenance phase, creatine dose is maintained at 3 – 5 g/day
The side effects of these supplements are rare but you immediately consult your doctor if you experience anything unusual.

Bottom line

Creatine is stored in our muscles and comes out to provide energy to the body and brain when needed. Professional players and athletes use this supplement as an energy source to carry out hard workout schedules and for muscle building. It can help you handle stress and deal with workload by boosting your brain and preventing mental fatigue. Therefore, it is also called a top nootropics agent.

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