Adderall is a popular prescription-only drug, most commonly used to treat ADHD, yet widely used as a study and productivity aid. Adderall abuse has been growing over the years. No less than 16 million Adderall prescriptions were given in 2012 alone to people between 20 and 39. Over 116 thousand people went to a rehabilitation center wanting to quit Adderall.

Nowadays, more and more people are becoming aware that long-term use of Adderall can be quite unhealthy and unpleasant due to the difficulties experienced when quitting. Fortunately, there are healthier ways to stay on top of your game when wanting to get things done.


Cocoa is the main ingredient of chocolate and one of the oldest nootropics in the world, originating from the Mesoamerican region of the world. Cocoa has caffeine, phenetylamine and theobromine, which account for its stimulating effects. Phenetylamine and theobromine are normally broken down by monoamine oxidase enzymes, yet there are certain substances that inhibit those enzymes. MAOIs, or monoamine oxidase inhibitors, prevent the breakdown of these substances, thus amplifying the cognitive effects.

People have also reported increased effects by consuming cocoa in the form of dark chocolate together with coffee.

Caffeine + L-Theanine

Caffeine is one of the most popular “smart drugs” on the planet and widely consumed as coffee. L-Theanine is one of those under-the-radar substances that lie at the heart of why a cup of green tea or black tea produces similar, yet slightly more pleasant effects. That’s because caffeine and L-Theanine complement each other well. Caffeine boosts attention, focus and energy levels, but it can make you feel anxious and jittery. L-Theanine relaxes the body and mind by promoting alpha brain waves and reducing heart rate and blood pressure.


Kratom, or Mytraguna Speciosa is a herb from the coffee family indigenous to Southeast Asia. Kratom contains compounds that have both stimulating and relaxing effects, depending on dosage and strain. Lower doses are known to be more energizing and higher doses accentuate the sedating and pain-relieving properties. Some Kratom strains, such as Maeng Da, Thai and White Vein produce considerably stronger stimulating and brain-boosting effects. Many people have actually substituted Kratom for their morning coffee and its use as a productivity aid has been gaining widespread popularity over the years.

Chinese and Korean Ginseng

Not all types of Ginseng generate the same effects. Korean and Chinese Ginseng are quite energizing, and are widely used to improve alertness, energy and memory. On the other hand, Indian Ginseng (or Ashwagandha) creates a more relaxed feeling. All strains of Ginseng improve general well-being, immune system and resistance to stress. You can buy Ginseng root and brew tea out of it or you can take it as a supplement. Avoid Ginseng that is part of a multi-vitamin mix because the quality of each individual substance is inevitably diluted. Look for Ginseng supplements with a Ginsenoside content over 3%.

Bacopa Monnieri

Also known as Brahmi, this herb is one of the oldest and most valued nootropic supplements. Bacopa Monnieri has been used for centuries to improve cognition by decreasing anxiety, relaxing the mind and improving memory formation. Currently, research is being conducted to investigate its anti-aging properties and potential to treat memory-impairing neurological disorders.


Modafinil is regarded by many to be the closest thing to Adderall in terms of effects, without being addictive or creating “forced” effects. Sold as a prescription drug, but also available to purchase online, Modafinil is one of the most effective nootropics recommended nowadays. What’s great about Modafinil is that it basically makes you love work and speeds up your thought process so that you can get things done faster.


Phenylpiracetam is a lesser known and more potent nootropic of the racetam family that has seen an increase of popularity over the years. From a structural point of view, phenylpiracetam is a racetam with an added phenyl group. The addition of the phenyl group improves the compound in two ways. Phenylpiracetam is at least 30 times stronger than piracetam, which means that you would need a significantly lower dose. Moreover, phenylpiracetam is more stimulating in its effects, bearing closer resemblance to other phenethylamines such as Adderall.

Author’s Bio: Adrian Carol works as an editor for Nootrodelic, a blog about nootropics, psychedelics and responsible use. He regards every day as an opportunity for growth and achievement.

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