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13 Best Nootropics for Anxiety

Looking for alternative ways to manage anxiety? Check out our list of the best nootropics, or brain-boosting supplements, that can help reduce anxiety and improve overall well-being. Find out which nootropics are the most effective for you individually, and how they work.

Table of Contents

Anxiety is a mental state that is characterized by feelings of worry, fear, and apprehension. Everyone experiences a normal emotion at some point in their lives. However, anxiety can interfere with daily activities and cause significant distress when it becomes excessive or persistent.

Social Anxiety Disorder affects an estimated 40 million people in the United States alone. People with social anxiety disorder often avoid situations where they might encounter adverse, or any, reaction from others. They also often feel anxious before going into new settings.

Many treatments are available for anxiety, including therapy, medication, and lifestyle changes. However, some people may find traditional medicine (pharmacueticals) ineffective or too harmul, and want to explore other options.

In many cases today, an SSRI is prescribed right off the first few minutes of talking to the doctor, instead of it being one of many possible option.

SSRI’s (Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors) are antidepressant medications used to treat social anxiety disorder, as well as with many other psychiatric conditions. They work by increasing the amount of serotonin in the brain.

Serotonin is a neurotransmitter responsible for mood, state of being, appetite, and sleep.

Although SSRIs are beneficial, they often come with a number of side effects, some of which make many people choose not to start the treatment because of that.

Enter Nootropics.

What Are Nootropics?

Nootropics are supplements that improve cognitive function. This includes memory, creativity, focus, and motivation.

Nootropics are often used to treat or prevent certain conditions. Amongst which are: anxiety, stress, ADHD, memory decline, and other neurological disorders.

If you suffer from social anxiety, crippling shyness, performance anxiety, or you tend to worry about things you can’t change and should not be occuoying your mind constantly, there are many nootropics for anxiety that may be beneficial to keeping your calm, relax, and regain the confidence you already have within you.

If any of that applies to you, read through, as you might find this blog post to be quite insightful.

In this post, we will discuss the best nootropics for anxiety disorders and how they impact anxiety disorders, as well as different types of anxieties, symptoms, and how to appraoch them should they ever show up in your life.

What is Anxiety?

TLDR: Anxiety is a mental disorder characterized by excessive worry and fear. Symptoms include shakes, sweating, rapid heart rate, nausea, and dizziness. 

Anxiety is an emotion characterized by feelings of worry, unease, or fear. It often includes physical symptoms like pacing back and forth, feeling restless, or having trouble concentrating.

Itcan interfere with daily life whther in school, work, or social life.

The cause of anxiety disorders includes genetics, brain chemistry, and life events. Treatment for anxiety typically involves medication and therapy or a combination of the two.

Nootropics may help with anxiety by providing an alternate treatment or additional support to traditional therapies.

Some people may feel alone in their anxiety, but the reality is that millions of people around the world struggle with anxiety daily.

Luckily, nootropics may be able to help. They can provide an alternate treatment or additional support to traditional therapies. If you’re struggling with anxiety, don’t hesitate to give nootropics a try and see how that could work out for you.

What Causes Anxiety?

Something could be what has turned your world upside down. If your fear persists and does not go away, it is probably caused by neurochemical problems. There may be problems associated with acetylcholine, dopamines, GABAs, glutamines, norepinephrine, or serotonin. It’s also a challenge to determine how neurotransmitters cause this.

Why have some drugs been marketed to alleviate symptoms such as panic attacks and depression?

Signs and Symptoms of High Stress & Anxiety Levels

Anxiety can is easily noticed given our experiences with anxiety during the first couple of years. Many people often associate chronic and persistent stress with severe health problems, and people experiencing chronic anxiety are more likely to be afflicted by any chronic condition.

Regardless of illness, long anxiety may cause cognitive impairment.

Different Types of Anxiety

There are many different types of anxiety, and each one can feel unique and daunting. But remember, you’re not alone! Millions of people around the world struggle with anxiety daily, and here are some of the most common types of anxiety:

Social Anxiety

Social anxiety is the fear of being judged or rejected by others. This type of anxiety can be very isolating and cause people to avoid social situations altogether.

People with social anxiety disorder feel highly anxious and self-conscious in social situations. They often worry about being judged or embarrassing themselves. They may avoid social problems altogether or only participate in them if they are with someone they know well.

Performance Anxiety

Performance anxiety is the fear of being judged or evaluated while performing. This type of anxiety often causes people to feel anxious or nervous before public speaking or taking a test.

People with specific phobias are afraid of a particular object or situation, which can be so intense that it interferes with their daily life. Common phobias include fear of spiders, fear of heights, and fear of public speaking.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder

Generalized anxiety disorder is characterized by excessive, uncontrollable worry about everyday things. This type of anxiety can make it difficult to focus on anything else, and it can often lead to physical symptoms like chest pain and difficulty breathing.

People with generalized anxiety disorder feel excessive anxiety and worry about a variety of things, such as work, school, money, and relationships. They often have difficulty controlling their worry and feel restless and tense.

Panic Disorder

Panic People with panic disorder experience sudden, intense feelings of terror that can last for a few minutes or up to an hour. They may have chest pain, shortness of breath, a racing heart, and feelings of dizziness or nausea.

Now that we know what anxiety is and the different types of anxiety disorders, let’s move on and discuss anxiety nootropics.

What Are Anxiety Nootropics?

Anxiety Nootropics are a great alternative to treating anxiety symptoms. They are alternatives to traditional medication. A supplement that helps improve cognitive function as the foundational step, including memory, creativity, and focus. In addition, they are effective in treating anxiety symptoms with minimal side effects, especially in comparison with pharmaceuticals. They often are effective in treating the symptoms of stress and depression too. Unlike traditional medications, nootropics have far fewer side effects. Or even have benefits, instead, such as improving sleep quality and reducing fatigue, to mention a few.  Many different nootropics are available on the market today, but not all nootropics are created equal. 

Some nootropics are more potent than others and are used to achieve different results. It is essential to choose a nootropic that is right for you and your individual needs.

The right nootropic, or perhaps the right nootropic stack, can offer relief without, or with minimal side effects.

Choose a nootropic that is right for your unique individual needs and that will allow you to start enjoying the benefits of improved physical and mental health.

A few natural nootropics that are worth mentioning in the context of nootropics for anxiety relief are:

  1. L-Theanine: a non-essential amino acid that is found in tea. It has many beneficial effects on the brain, including reducing anxiety and stress.
  2. Phenibut: derivative of the GABA neurotransmitter that reduces anxiety. It effectively treats general anxiety, social anxiety, and panic disorders.
  3. 5-HTP: a precursor to serotonin neurotransmitter, known to uplift and promote feelings of ease and reduce anxiety. Effective for social anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorder.
  4. Rhodiola rosea: a herb traditionally used to treat anxiety and fatigue. It has many beneficial effects on the brain, including improving memory, calming and reducing anxiety, and enhancing memory and focus.

The list goes on and on, but those are general use-for-any-anxiety nootropics. We will dive deeper into specificities later on.

How Do Nootropics Reduce Anxiety?

Nootropics are a relatively new treatment option that is effective for some people with anxiety. They are substances that enhance cognitive function, memory, focus, and motivation. They also improve mood and reduce stress and anxiety. 

Anxiety disorders are the most common mental disorder in the U.S., affecting 40 million adults yearly. There are many different ways to treat anxiety, including therapy, medication, and self-care measures. But there is a growing body of research on the use of nootropics for anxiety, and the results are promising.

A study found that nootropics helped reduce anxiety in people with a generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). Participants in the study took a daily supplement containing a blend of nootropic ingredients for eight weeks. At the end of the study, those who had taken the supplement reported significantly lower anxiety levels than those who had not. [Ref]

Another study looked at the effect of a specific nootropic called aniracetam on people with a social anxiety disorder (SAD). Aniracetam is a type of racetam, a class of nootropics that act on the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. The study found that aniracetam effectively reduced social anxiety, including fear of public speaking. [Ref]

Nootropics are thought to work by modulating levels of neurotransmitters in the brain, such as serotonin and dopamine. This can help to improve mood and reduce anxiety. Nootropics may also help increase levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), and this protein helps protect and regenerate nerve cells.

If you’re considering trying anxiety nootropics, consider talking to your doctor first.

Nootropics are not a replacement for traditional therapies; they should be used in addition to other treatment options.

Best Natural Nootropics for Anxiety & Stress

Some herbs are used in traditional medicine as antidepressants or anxiety suppressants in popular culture. But herbs and plant mixtures can only be incredibly effective at changing our body’s physiology. Biotech advancement in recent years has opened up new possibilities for the human body. Many high-end products contain powerful and effective nootropic ingredients that can reduce stress while improving mental concentration.

Ashwagandha is a herb used for centuries in Ayurvedic medicine. It is said to help reduce anxiety, improve sleep quality, and improve cognitive function overall.

Bacopa monnieri is a herb also in use for hundreds of years. It is found to help calm down and grounding, reducing anxiety and feelings of stress—two of the modern-day epidemics.

In recent years people have been learning more and implementing more and more nootropics into their daily lives for several symptoms including, and not limited to: anxiety, nervousness, worry, and fear – with great results and a significant, notable difference.

Severe cases of anxiety disorders require more medical attention, counseling, behavioral intervention, and other treatments. However, generalized, everyday anxiety responds well to nootropics that specifically address its neurochemical cause.

For example, some nootropics promote relaxation and a sense of tranquility. They do that by increasing the production of and use of the GABA neurotransmitter that reduces the central nervous system’s stimulation.

In contrast, others modulate how the brain processes serotonin and the rewarding neurotransmitter dopamine.

You might find something worth considering whether you suffer from any type of anxiety.

Nootropics for anxiety can help you regain and sustain your calm, relaxation, and confidence.

Read on, and let’s proceed.

Nootropics and Emotional Intelligence

This is especially helpful for individuals with anxiety disorders who lack emotional control and stability. Nootropics also help ease anxieties by reducing and increasing one’s endurance and tolerance to stress. Stress is a physical and mental response to a threat. It can cause anxiety and other psychological and physical health problems.

Adaptogenic nootropics can help reduce stress by improving how the brain responds to stress. This can help people with anxiety disorders feel less anxious and stressed and not as easily triggered by minor things as they would have.

Nootropics also help anxiety disorders by boosting mood. A good mood is usually what e would refer to as the feeling of happiness, excitement, and joy. Nootropics have been scientifically proven to improve mood by increasing certain chemicals in the brain, such as dopamine and serotonin. Thereby decreasing anxiety in people with anxiety disorders, distracting them from unnecessary thoughts.

Different nootropics can relieve anxiety. And we’ll go over many of them today.

They are not in chronological order, so their placement has nothing to do with being more or less effective. Each will have its respective research link if you feel like geeking out on one or all of them.

The Best Nootropics For Anxiety

Different types of anxiety require different treatments, and nootropics are not and should not be used as the go-to choice. However, it can’t be denied certain nootropics are very effective as an alternative to traditional anxiety medication. 

Additional to the anxiety-relieving effects, they have a bonus of also positively impacting other aspects of your life, such as learning ability, verbal fluency, sustained focus, and the like.

Whether you experience occasional, “typical” anxiety or have been medically diagnosed with a type of anxiety disorder, nootropics can benefit you if you take the time to understand how they may work for you, given your unique circumstances. 

Most nootropics easily bypass the blood-brain barrier, allowing for the passage of nutrients into the brain. 

Magnesium

Magnesium is a mineral involved in many processes in the body, including muscle function and nervous system regulation. Research suggests Magnesium helps reduce anxiety levels. One study found magnesium supplementation was associated with participants’ lower anxiety and stress levels. Another study found that Magnesium helps relieve symptoms of anxiety disorders such as panic and social anxiety. Hence, Magnesium may be worth considering as a natural nootropic for reducing anxiety levels.

Bacopa Monnieri

Bacopa monnieri is a natural nootropic that helps the body deal with physical and emotional stress. It has been used for centuries in traditional medicine to treat various conditions, including anxiety and stress. It works by increasing levels of the neurotransmitter GABA, which is known to have a relaxing, calm effect on the nervous system, which is how it reduces anxiety and stress. The herb also boosts cognitive function, improves memory, and protects against nerve damage. In a survey of individuals over 65 years old receiving 300mg of Bacopa Monnieri, the results show a notable decrease in anxiety and depression symptoms.

Noopept

Noopept is a nootropic that improves cognitive function and reduces anxiety by increasing serotonin levels in the brain. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that promotes feelings of happiness and well-being, making it a practical option as an additional or alternative treatment for anxiety symptoms. It also raises BDNF levels, a neurotrophic factor that regulates the brainstem’s growth, maturity, and growth. BDNF increases cognitive ability and reduces stress in the process. Since Noopept affects benzodiazepine receptors associated with lowering stress levels, it improves mood and promotes a feeling of ease. A study involving patients with mild cognitive disorders showed evidence that 10mg of Noopept used twice daily had a notable anxiolytic effect. Furthermore, anecdotal reports often indicate that Noopept benefits patients with anxiety and depression and improves cognitive function.

Panax Ginseng

Panax ginseng is a popular herbal remedy that has been used for centuries to treat various conditions, including depression and anxiety. A study published in the Journal of Psychiatric Research found that Panax ginseng significantly reduced anxiety levels in participants. The study’s authors believe that the herb works by increasing serotonin levels. This neurotransmitter is known to have a calming effect on the brain.

Aniracetam

Aniracetam is a nootropic that effectively reduces anxiety, enhances mood, improves verbal fluency, and increases sociability. Multiple studies found it to be effective in reducing anxiety levels by affecting the serotonin and dopamine levels in the brain, which can help improve mood and reduce anxiety. It is considered safe and well-tolerated and is often recommended as a treatment for anxiety disorders.

Fasoracetam

Fasoracetam is an anxiolytic nootropic used off-label as an alternative ADHD treatment. Studies found that it reduces anxious behaviors and improves cognitive function. In a study on individuals with general anxiety disorder and social anxiety disorders, Fasoracetam was found to improve symptoms in only two weeks.

This shows its effectiveness in the treatment of different anxiety disorders. Additionally, it improves mood and alleviates symptoms of depression by acting on the GABA neurotransmitter and suppressing the excess production of the excitatory neurotransmitter glutamate.

Anecdotally, it is reported to present a sense of clarity and calmness. Fasoracetam is undergoing the final stage of a clinical trial to approve it as an optional treatment for ADHD symptoms.

L-Theanine

L-theanine is an amino acid found naturally in tea leaves and commonly used in teas and elixirs to reduce anxiety and stress. Research suggests L-theanine reduces anxiety and promotes relaxation without causing sleepiness.

A study looking at participants who took L-theanine found improved cognitive performance. It reduced anxiety during a stressful task compared to those taking a placebo.

L-theanine is an effective, natural, and easily accessible nootropic to consider for anxiety relief. It also has a powerful effect on memory enhancement, sustaining attention, and improving mood and cognitive function. 

Rhodiola Rosea

Rhodiola Rosea is a natural nootropic that helps relieve stress and anxiety. It does this by increasing serotonin and dopamine levels in the brain, neurotransmitters controlling mood.

When these levels are low or depleted, it can lead to anxiety disorders. Rhodiola Rosea also helps improve cognitive function, enhancing memory and reducing anxiety and insomnia.

It is an adaptogenic herb that helps the body deal with stress. Research also shows that it can improve energy levels and protect the brain from neurodegeneration.

It is considered the best nootropic for anxiety relief in terms of the one with the least potential side effects.

Ashwagandha

Ashwagandha is one of the most effective nootropics for reducing anxiety. Clinical trials have shown that it effectively reduces generalized and social anxiety in medically diagnosed patients.

It helps health by lowering levels of the stress hormone cortisol in your body. High cortisol levels are harmful and can cause weight gain, high blood pressure, and heart disease.

A study showed that taking Ashwagandha for 60 days can help reduce cortisol levels in people with chronic anxiety or mental stress. It also helps the body cope and not be easily triggered by stressors. Other reports also suggest it eases symptoms of depression.

Lion’s Mane Mushroom 

Lion’s Mane Mushroom is a potent nootropic supplement that helps people feel better by improving sleep and reducing the effects of various mental health issues. It is one of the most beneficial nootropics. However, its use and benefits are best when taken for the long term, not immediate effects.

The mushroom has been shown to help with fatigue and regulate the body’s circadian rhythms. Studies have also shown that Lion’s Mane Mushroom can help reduce depression and anxiety symptoms.

Phenibut

Phenibut is a unique nootropic that helps reduce anxiety and lessen depression and symptoms of PTSD. Due to its euphoria-like effect, it has abuse potential and is advised only to be used occasionally.

No more than twice per week. It is anecdotally reported to reduce anxiety in social situations and helps with many conditions. It improves mood and sleep quality and has the potential to help alleviate depression and anxiety.

It is an effective GABA-receptor antagonist, dramatically reducing CNS activity and panic attacks. It is a well-known relaxant used in Russia to treat generalized or social anxiety. 

Sulbutiamine

Sulbutiamine is a form of Vitamin B1, and it is used to help improve mental clarity and energy levels. It is effective in treating conditions such as anxiety and depression.

People who have taken Sulbutiamine report it makes them feel good, reduces their anxiety, and makes them happier. There is evidence that it also increases the amount of dopamine and serotonin in the brain, the two chemicals associated with pleasure and reward. 

Coluracetam

A clinical trial of coluracetam showed it is effective in treating anxiety and depression. The 6-week placebo-controlled trial helped treat the major depressive disorder (MDD) and associated generalized anxiety disorder (GAD).

Symptoms of anxiety and depression were significantly reduced in the group that took coluracetam compared to the placebo group. Accordingly, coluracetam improves cognition and memory. Anecdotally, users report it enhances concentration, focus, and vision. 

Conclusion

Anxiety is a debilitating condition that can severely impact your quality of life. However, there are ways to combat it, and nootropics are one of them. If you suffer from anxiety, consider adding some of the nootropics mentioned above to your supplement regimen. With their help, you can effectively reduce anxiety and improve your overall health.

Nootropics are effective in reducing different types of anxieties, and mood swings. Ashwagandha, Lion’s Mane Mushroom, Phenibut, Sulbutiamine, L-Theanine, and Coluracetam are some of the most popular nootropics for anxiety relief. Each has different mechanisms of action, but they all have one common goal: to reduce anxiety and improve cognitive function.

If you suffer from anxiety, consider adding one or more of these nootropics to your supplement regimen. Who knows how much you can change your life by adding a simple supplement?

No one. There is only one way to find out!

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