The 6 Top Cognitive Supplements to Boost Brain Power

Bradley Keys · Mar 23 2023

As science and technology continue to interlink and find new ways to maximize human potential and power, the constant quest to become the most efficient versions of ourselves never ceases. With this in mind, the mere prospect of enhancing your brain power and improving your cognitive function becomes ever-so-tantalizing. 

Therefore, you might be interested in exploring the world of supplements for cognition, also known as nootropics. They can assist in boosting memory, creativity, motivation, and overall cognitive function, making them an exciting option for anyone looking to improve their brain power. 

Without further ado, let's dive into some popular cognitive supplements that have taken the holistic substance market by storm. You'll quickly learn why nootropics are starting to be seen as a natural solution for maximizing our brains' potential.

Nootropics: A Brief Overview

Nootropics also called "smart drugs," are substances believed to boost brain function. These substances come in various forms, including prescription medications, functional foods, and supplements for cognition. They're often taken to improve memory, creativity, motivation, and overall cognitive function.

There's a growing body of research suggesting that certain nootropics can have real benefits for the brain. For instance, some studies have found that piracetam can be used as a real supplement for cognitive function to help improve memory and reduce age-related decline in brainpower. Other substances, like caffeine and modafinil, are commonly used to enhance alertness and focus.

It's important to note that not all nootropics are crafted in the same manner, and some may be more effective than others. Some supplements may even have negative side effects, so it's important to seek professional advice before starting any new supplement regimen. 

Furthermore, while nootropics can help boost brain function in the short term, they're not a magic bullet for long-term brain health. A healthy diet, regular exercise, and adequate sleep are all essential for maintaining good cognitive function over time.

Types of Nootropics

Nootropics come in a variety of forms, each with its own unique set of effects on the brain. In this section, we'll explore the different types of nootropics, including racetams, stimulants, adaptogens, and more – let's take a closer look at some of those mentioned.


Racetams are a class of nootropics that are believed to improve memory and learning by affecting certain neurotransmitters in the brain. The first racetam, piracetam, was developed in the 1960s and has since been followed by several other similar compounds, including aniracetam, oxiracetam, and phenylpiracetam.

Racetams work by increasing blood flow to the brain, which may improve the delivery of oxygen and nutrients to the brain. They may also affect certain neurotransmitters, such as acetylcholine, that are involved in learning and memory. Some racetams are also thought to increase the production of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), which is a protein that is essential for the growth and survival of brain cells.

Studies have found that racetams may have a range of cognitive benefits, including: 

  • Improved memory and learning
  • Increased focus and concentration 
  • Reduced age-related decline in cognitive function

However, more research is needed to fully understand the mechanisms behind these effects and to determine the long-term safety of racetams – albeit, the initial findings are indeed promising.


Nootropic stimulants are a type of nootropic that work by increasing the availability of certain neurotransmitters in the brain, resulting in improved alertness, focus, and motivation. These substances can come in the form of natural supplements, such as caffeine, or prescription medications, like modafinil.

Caffeine, one of the most commonly used nootropic stimulants, is found in many everyday beverages and foods, such as coffee, tea, and chocolate. It works by blocking the action of adenosine, a neurotransmitter that makes you feel tired, and increasing the availability of other neurotransmitters like dopamine and norepinephrine, which are involved in attention and motivation.

Modafinil, on the other hand, is a prescription drug that's commonly used to treat sleep disorders, such as narcolepsy and sleep apnea. However, it's also becoming increasingly popular as a cognitive enhancer, as it's been shown to improve alertness, focus, and motivation in people who are sleep-deprived or otherwise lacking in these areas.

It's important to note that while nootropic stimulants can be effective in the short term, these substances might not be the best choice for everyone. Some people may experience negative side effects from these substances, such as anxiety, jitters, or trouble sleeping. Moreover, long-term, excessive use of some nootropic stimulants, such as caffeine, can lead to increased tolerance and dependence.


Adaptogens are a unique class of nootropics that work by helping the body adapt to physical and mental stress. Unlike other nootropics, which primarily target specific neurotransmitters or brain functions, adaptogens work by regulating the overall stress response of the body, helping to promote homeostasis and balance.

Adaptogens have been used for thousands of years in traditional medicine, particularly in Asian and Ayurvedic systems, and have been shown to have a range of benefits for the brain and body. Some of the most commonly used adaptogens include ashwagandha (which has exploded on TikTok recently), Rhodiola, and ginseng – the latter of the two will be explored in-depth shortly.

These substances work by affecting the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis, which is the sector of the brain responsible for regulating stress response. By regulating the HPA axis, adaptogens can help to reduce feelings of stress and anxiety while also improving energy levels and mood.

The Untapped Potential of Cognitive Supplements

Nootropics are an exciting field of study, and there are a lot of potentials for these substances to improve our daily lives. 

Whether you're a college student looking for an edge in your studies (and want to stop depending on Adderall for pulling all-nighters), a busy professional looking to improve your daily productivity, or just someone looking to boost your brain power and maximize its potential, nootropics may be worth exploring. Just be sure to do your research, talk to your doctor, and proceed with caution.

Best Supplements for Cognitive Function

As people strive to improve their mental performance and stay ahead of the curve, the use of these supplements for cognitive function-enhancing purposes has become increasingly popular. These supplements come in various forms, including powders, capsules, and drinks, and claim to enhance various aspects of cognitive function, such as memory, focus, and creativity. 

But with so many options on the market, it can be overwhelming to determine which ones are worth trying. Let's cover the best supplements for cognition, their benefits, and what to look for when choosing a supplement to support your mental performance.

1. Lion's Mane Mushrooms

Lion's Mane Mushroom is a kind of medicinal mushroom – no, not those kinds of special mushrooms – that is gaining popularity for its potential as one of the best supplements for cognitive function. This mushroom is native to North America, Europe, Asia and, in traditional Chinese medicine, has been used for centuries to improve brain function and overall health.

Studies have shown that Lion's Mane Mushroom possesses compounds that have the potential to improve memory and concentration, reduce inflammation, and promote nerve growth in the brain. The active compounds in the mushroom are called beta-glucans and hericystin, and they are believed to have a positive impact on brain health by stimulating the growth of nerve cells and promoting the production of Nerve Growth Factor (NGF).

One study found that ingesting an extract of Lion's Mane Mushroom improved memory and cognitive function in older mice. Furthermore, some studies suggest that Lion's Mane Mushroom may have a protective effect against neurological conditions such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. More research is needed, however, to confirm its potential as a cognitive supplement.

2. Cognizin® Citicoline

Cognizin® Citicoline is a form of citicoline, a naturally occurring substance found in every cell of the body, which also happens to proliferate in the brain. It's one of the more popular supplements for cognition that is often used to boost memory and enhance focus.

Citicoline works by increasing the availability of certain neurotransmitters, including acetylcholine, which is responsible for learning and memory. It's also been shown to enhance brain metabolism by increasing the levels of certain brain chemicals, such as phospholipids, which play a critical role in brain health.

One of the key benefits of Citicoline as one of the better cognitive supplements is its ability to enhance attention and improve memory. For instance, a study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology found that citicoline improved memory and mood in patients with bipolar disorder and cocaine dependency. Another study found that citicoline improved the speed of information processing, working memory, and attention in healthy adults.

3. Ginseng

Ginseng is a well-known and widely used herb that has been used for centuries in traditional Chinese medicine. It's commonly referred to as an adaptogenic herb, which means it helps the body adapt to stress. But ginseng has also been shown to have benefits for brain function. 

There are two principal kinds of ginseng: Korean or Asian ginseng (Panax ginseng) and American ginseng (Panax quinquefolius) – both types have been studied for their potential as supplements for cognition improvement and mental performance.

Studies have shown that ginseng can improve cognitive function, particularly memory, and learning. For example, a study published in the journal "Pharmacology, Biochemistry, and Behavior" found that Panax ginseng improved working memory and speed of recall in healthy middle-aged adults. Another study published in the "Journal of Ethnopharmacology" found that a combination of ginseng and ginkgo biloba improved memory and attention in healthy adults.

Ginseng is thought to work by increasing blood flow to the brain, which enhances oxygen and nutrient delivery. This can improve overall brain function, including memory, attention, and mental clarity. It also contains compounds called ginsenosides, which are believed to have a positive effect on brain function.

In addition to its status as one of the better supplements for cognitive function, ginseng has a number of other health benefits, including reducing fatigue, improving moods, and boosting the immune system. However, it's important to note that not some ginseng sold on the market may contain low-quality or contaminated ginseng. Therefore, it's always best to choose a reputable brand that sells quality supplements for cognition and speak with your healthcare provider before starting on any new cognitive supplements.

4. Ginkgo

Ginkgo Biloba, also known simply as ginkgo, is a popular herbal supplement that is derived from the leaves of the ginkgo tree. Similar to other supplements for cognition on this list, it's been used for thousands of years in traditional Chinese medicine, and today it is widely recognized for its potential as one of the best cognitive supplements on the market.

One of the primary active compounds in ginkgo is called flavonoids, which are known for their powerful antioxidant properties. These antioxidants help protect the brain from damage caused by free radicals, which can contribute to the onset of cognitive decline. Furthermore, ginkgo has been shown to increase blood flow to the brain, which can help improve cognitive function.

Another compound in ginkgo, terpenoids, is thought to play a role in enhancing cognitive function by increasing neurotransmitter activity in the brain – this improved neurotransmitter activity is believed to help improve memory, focus and to help achieve overall mental clarity.

While research into the benefits of ginkgo is ongoing, existing studies suggest that this herbal supplement may have significant potential as one of the strongest supplements for cognition improvement. If you're looking for a natural way to boost your cognitive function, ginkgo may be a great option to consider.

5. Rhodiola

Rhodiola is a plant that grows in cold regions of Europe and Asia. It has been used in traditional medicine for centuries, and more recently, it's been gaining popularity as a supplement for cognitive function. There's a growing body of research suggesting that Rhodiola can emerge as one of the better supplements for cognitive function, particularly under stress or fatigue.

One study found that Rhodiola supplementation helped reduce mental fatigue and improve overall cognitive function in healthy people who were subjected to a stressful task. Another study found that Rhodiola supplementation improved the attention, memory, and processing speed of people who were exposed to chronic stress and traumatic, life-changing events. There's also evidence to suggest that Rhodiola can help improve symptoms of depression and even reduce symptoms of burnout.

It's believed that Rhodiola works by increasing the levels of serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine in the brain, which can help improve mood and cognitive function. Additionally, the supplement is believed to help regulate the levels of stress hormones, such as cortisol, which can help reduce the negative impact of stress on cognitive performance.

6. Fish Oils

Fish oils are a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential for maintaining good health, and derived from the tissues of fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel, and sardines. As well as carrying a host of other benefits, Omega-3 fatty acids also play an important role in brain health and cognitive function, making them a true contender as supplements for cognitive function.

Its potential as one of the better supplements for cognitive function derives from studies showing that omega-3s as cognitive supplements can help to boost memory, attention, and learning ability. It can also improve mood, as well as reduce inflammation in the brain and protect against age-related cognitive decline.

One of the key components of fish oils, docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), is found in high concentrations in the brain, which is important for maintaining healthy nerve cells and brain function. In addition to their cognitive benefits, fish oils have been found to have a range of other health benefits, including reducing the risk of heart disease and improving joint health. It's a popular supplement that's also used by fitness gurus looking to complement their physical regimes.

While the best way to get omega-3s is through a balanced diet that includes fatty fish, fish oil supplements can provide a convenient alternative for those who do not consume enough fish. When searching for cognitive supplement providers selling fish oils, it's important to choose a high-quality fish oil supplement that has been purified to remove contaminants, such as mercury and other heavy metals, to ensure that it is safe to consume.

Brain Superfood Tonic: The Best in Cognitive Supplements

Our Brain Superfood Tonic is a unique blend of all-natural ingredients, specifically chosen for their abilities to act as true supplements for cognitive function and support brain health. With its potent combination of herbs, vitamins, and minerals, this tonic is designed to help you achieve maximum mental clarity, focus, and overall brain wellness. 

Whether you're looking to boost your productivity at work, stay sharp and alert, or simply support your overall brain health, our Brain Superfood Tonic is the perfect solution. It's a brain-boosting drink mix that includes Lion's Mane mushrooms, Ginseng, Rhodiola, and more!

Learn more about Nested Naturals' Brain Superfood Tonic and our wide range of all-natural wellness or cognitive supplements by visiting our online store today!