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Activated Charcoal Uses & Benefits

Uses for Activated Charcoal

Once upon a time, charcoal was mainly used for barbeques on Sundays. Little did we know that those pieces could actually undergo a process that could improve our health as well as save us from harmful toxins that may be entering our bodies.

Activated charcoal has been gaining its popularity today both in the market and in the medical field. This is mainly because it promises to be an excellent detox agent and can even be used in situations of substance poisoning. Before now it was primarily used in Ayurvedic medicine and Chinese medicine for centuries.

What is activated charcoal good for?

Activated charcoal is made from either peat, coal, wood, coconut shell, or petroleum. It becomes “activated” when it is heated in high temperatures and then oxidized. The fine particles that remain are almost pure carbon, and the resulting structure has an enormous surface area. This gives the charcoal the ability to absorb various chemicals to its surface, capturing, binding, and removing poisonous toxins, heavy metals, and other unwanted chemicals from our bodies. This unique property of activated charcoal is gaining recognition in the medical field, as it is used in the emergency treatment of certain kinds of poisoning.

What are the main uses of activated charcoal?

1. As an antidote for drugs, chemicals, and poisons
Activated charcoal has been used in emergency cases where poisoning may be life threatening. If you have ingested a poison such as bleach, or even alcohol (it can even help with hangovers the next day!), activated charcoal traps these substances before it can be absorbed by the body and cause harm. The substances are then flushed out of the body through bowel movements. The use of activated charcoal is now regarded as a routine part of poisoning protocols within minimum side effects.

2. Use it for general detoxification of your body
Our daily food choices may be highly unhealthy for us, and especially unhealthy for our gut. Processed foods for example, may pose a significant problem not only to our stomachs but also to our general health. They might produce certain toxins that could damage our cells and affect our immune system. How can we get rid ourselves of these toxins you may ponder? Regular use of activated charcoal may help. Due to its absorbent properties, activated charcoal can eliminate these toxins and unwanted bacteria from our bodies, leaving us healthy and feeling fresh.

3. Natural teeth whitener
Joseph Banker, a cosmetic dentist based in New Jersey stated:

“I was super skeptical until I tried it. It’s quite messy, but it does strip away stains and plaque to make your teeth appear whiter.”

Having a high binding ability, activated charcoal can adhere to surface stains that may be caused by consumption of coffee, tea, and sodas to name a few. It can effectively remove these substances after brushing.
How do we use activated charcoal to whiten teeth? You can easily pop open a capsule and pour it in a container. Afterwards, you can turn it into a paste by adding baking soda, your charcoal, salt, coconut mct oil, peppermint oil. Then, use the paste just like a toothpaste and have the entire surface of your teeth covered, leaving it on for 5-10 minutes. Once this is done, rinse your mouth thoroughly and brush your teeth as you would do so normally. Your welcome, we just helped you figure out a new way to whiten those teeth for cheap.

Charcoal Uses

4. For digestive problems and oral hygiene
Because activated charcoal has the ability to eliminate bacteria, it can thus keep us away from bad breath by eliminating certain kinds of bacteria. On the other hand, it also keeps our digestive tract clean through the elimination of bad bacteria that may have inhabited there. This can also help relieve any bloating you may have.

5. Fight heart disease in kidney patients
According to research from Vanderbilt University, activated charcoal may help fight heart disease among kidney patients. Valentina Kon, one of the researchers, stated:

“We found that oral activated charcoal lessens atherosclerotic lesions in experimental mice with kidney damage.”

This can benefit patients with kidney disease, as they have a very high risk of developing atherosclerosis or hardening of the arteries, also increasing their risk of death from cardiovascular disease. In addition, she added that “This is especially important because there is no effective treatment for reducing the high rate of cardiovascular mortality in patients with end-stage renal disease.”

6. Anti-aging properties
Because activated charcoal effectively removes harmful substances from our body, it may also slow the rate at which the brain becomes sensitive to toxins and aid in building a better defence mechanism. It may improve the adaptive functioning of organs such as the liver, kidneys and adrenals.

How do you use it?

Activated charcoal is now readily available in tablet or pill form; but before taking it, be sure to contact your doctor or the poison control center as it may reduce the effectiveness of any medicine you may be taking. It can also be consumed as charcoal powder and to prevent it from scattering, be careful when opening and adding water to the container. When in powder form, it can easily be added to your favourite drinks, juices, smoothies and other baked products. When taking the liquid form, make sure you shake it well before using it, since some particles may have settled at the bottom. Yes, you heard right there are pre-mixed charcoal drinks, yum yum.

If you have been told to take activated charcoal with ipecac syrup to treat poisoning, make sure that you do not take this medicine until after you have taken ipecac syrup (used to cause vomiting). Make sure the vomiting has stopped; this usually takes 30 minutes.

It is not recommended that you take this medicine with chocolate syrup, ice cream or sherbet, as it may prevent it from working properly. Also, do not take other medicine or pills within 2 hours of ingesting activated charcoal, since it may prevent the other medicine or supplement from being absorbed in the body readily.

The Best Charcoal Money Can Buy (for cheap)

charcoal facts supplementBy now your probably pondering and murmuring to yourself about the best best charcoal to buy and the one we recommend. It will come as no surprise to you that we recommend getting the coconut charcoal made by BulletProof. Most charcoal tablets come in ineffectively small doses  and are made from shoddy material that is much cheaper then coconut shells used in BP products.  BP product comes is an ultrafine and purified using acid washing (costs more $), to remove any toxic heavy metals that are almost certainly left behind by other supplement companies, also the finer grains works better too, and for a few more bucks, you definitely want to take something that does more good then bad!

Click here to check out the Upgraded Charcoal that we recommend.

*UPDATE*: It seems like we have finished the inventory on BP, click here for an alternative location to buy it (from Amazon) if the above is sold out.

Uses for Activated Charcoal

References:

  • https://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/activated-charcoal-the-latest-detox-fad-in-an-obsessive-food-culture/
  • http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2015/05/29/activated-charcoal-health-benefits_n_7468724.html
  • http://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements/charcoal-activated-oral-route/proper-use/drg-20070087
  • https://www.bulletproofexec.com/the-strangest-way-to-detox/
  • http://www.naturalnews.com/049196_teeth_whitener_activated_charcoal_Natural_Health.html
  • http://www.naturalnews.com/044905_activated_charcoal_digestion_dental_care.html
  • http://www.naturalnews.com/032570_activated_charcoal_cholesterol.html
  • http://www.naturalnews.com/031740_charcoal_detoxification.html
  • http://www.naturalnews.com/028684_kidney_disease_activated_charcoal.html
  • http://trackmystack.com/supplements-Charcoal

How To Really Make BulletProof Coffee

Making Bulletproof Coffee at Home

butter-mct-coffeeCoffee and Caffeine

Caffeine is considered to be one of the most widely used stimulants at the present time. Aside from the other food and beverages such as soda, tea, chocolate, and berries (yes berries), our daily cup of coffee has the highest caffeine content of them all. Although it is not categorized as a nootropic itself, it is still used in the nootropic world extensively and is combined with other supplements because of the countless cognitive and health benefits it provides. Among its benefits include increased alertness, higher attention span, and focus, as well as an improvement in mood through its influence on the Dopaminergic system. Caffeine also serves to have neuroprotective properties and is currently being studied for being a possible treatment for certain conditions such as Parkinson’s disease, asthma, liver cancer and colon cancer.

Now on the other hand, Bulletproof has taken coffee into a much different level. It has widened the potential of how coffee can benefit us and how it can be used for our other needs. Let’s take a look what Bulletproof Coffee really is and know why it has made a huge impact in people’s lives, feel free to grab a coffee, it’s a long read!

What is Bulletproof Coffee?

Bulletproof Coffee has been on a meteoric rise in pop culture, health circles and in the nootropic world. But, what is really special about this coffee? What does it have to offer to the people?

Bulletproof is a brand of coffee that was created by Dave Asprey and was first posted in his blog on 2009. It is made up of ultra low toxin “Upgraded” coffee beans, Brain Octane Oil which as basically an MCT Oil (however, much more refined), and healthy fats from grass-fed butter. However, this recipe is not quite new to us. This is because long before, yak-butter tea drinks are already being practiced especially in Tibet. Now, Dave Asprey has come up to his own version of the said drink- he experimented and came up eventually with Bulletproof Coffee. (1)

Each of the components of Bulletproof Coffee has their own respective roles and thus making up a stronger coffee. Let’s first start off with the Upgraded Coffee Beans. The coffee beans that were used in the Bulletproof Coffee recipe are of high quality and have very low mycotoxin levels (mycotoxins will be discussed further as you read along this article). These beans serve to maximize overall brain function such as a faster processing speed and improved learning and recall. Moreover, the Upgraded coffee beans also help in promoting fat loss. On the other hand, being an MCT Oil, Brain Octane Oil increases ketone production and boosts our metabolic rate by up to 12% (6).

Ketosis, which is increased with the help of Brain Octane Oil found in Bulletproof Coffee, is actually a vital process of our body. It refers to the state where the body enters into a fat burning mode that is also actually good for the brain. However, the normal way to be in a state of ketosis is to eat zero carbs, moderate protein and lots of fats for several days so that your body would in turn burn fat for fuel. But, with Brain Octane Oil embedded on Bulletproof coffee as one of its main ingredients, it will provide a high quality source of fat which is the rarest one with 8-carbon chains. Because of the Brain Octane Oil, your body can use these fats as fuel while raising up your ketone levels. As a result, you hack your Ghrelin and CCK hormones. Ghrelin is the hormone responsible for the sensation of hunger. It tells and alarms our brain that we need to eat and our body needs nutrients. CCK on the other hand, is known as cholecystokinin and is the hormone opposite to Ghrelin’s actions. In contrast, CCK causes you to feel the sensation of being full and will cause you to stop eating. In this way, you can actually hack them and enter into a high energy fat burning mode without being hungry (7).

Bulletproof Coffee Ingredients

  1. Bulletproof Upgraded Coffee – Whole bean, Ground or Decaf. Keurig Coffee Cartridges are available too in packs of 30.
  2. XCT / MCT or Brain Octane Oil can be bought online.
  3. Grass Fed Butter – Kerry Gold, Anchor (New Zealand), In Canada you can go for Rolling Meadows from Whole Foods
  4. Optional: Raw Natural Chocolate or Pure Madagascar Vanilla Beans
  5. Super Optional: Cacao, Creatine, Protein Powder, Raw Honey

All of these ingredients can be purchased easily from Bulletproof here with our discount.

How do I make Bulletproof Coffee?

All you need to know to make Bulletproof Coffee in 3 simple steps:

Step 1: Get the right Ingredients, Grind & Brew
Given that you have your quality coffee, brew it as you would normally do. Bulletproof Upgraded Coffee Beans may be purchased online.

Step 2: Pre-heat the Blender
To pre-heat the blender, pour an extra amount of boiling water into the blender while your coffee brews. The reason for this is simple, you don’t want your coffee to go cold.

Step 3: Get Ready for Frothy
Remove the hot water from the pre-heated blender, then add bulletproof coffee, 1 tablespoon of butter as needed, and 1 table spoon of MCT Oil. Blend until a thick layer of foam is on top, which should take about 20 seconds.

Bonus Step 4: Optional Stack Upgrades
For your own preference, you may want to add cinnamon, vanilla, dark chocolate, or other sweeteners. Now, your Bulletproof Coffee is ready and you may enjoy its taste and experience its benefits in just a matter of minutes. When you get straight to work, you will notice that you will not feel hungry for at least 2 hours, your brain will work at peak level (provided you have no other health issues), and the coffee will energize you, while being healthy (as an antioxidant, more on this in another post). An additional thing I like to add is Creatine to my coffee, it provides “energy for the neurons in our brain” via ATP and is probably the most widely used supplement.

Watch Dave Asprey make his coffee below:

What makes other coffee “bad”?

Is there really a bad coffee? Are coffees supposed to be happy beverages that can boost our day and add energy? Some coffee lovers might disagree to this but yes, there are bad coffees. Coffees actually become bad due to the presence of mycotoxins.

Mycotoxin basically comes from the Greek words “mykes” or “mukos” which means fungus and from “toxikon” which means poison. It is a secondary metabolite produced by molds that can readily colonize crops such as those precious coffee beans. Apparently, one species of mold can produce many different mycotoxins and a same mycotoxin can be produced by several other species. Among the major types of myycotoxin include the aflatoxins, ochratoxin, citrinin, ergot alkaloids, patulin, and the fusarium (2). Aflatoxin B1 and Ochratoxin A specifically, are the most relevant types of mycotoxins found in the coffee beans. The former is arguably the most potent carcinogen known (3) while the latter may cause acute and chronic effects on the kidneys as well as the brain and is also considered to be a weak carcinogen (4). Mycotoxins in general, can cause diseases such as mycoses and mycotoxicoses in human beings and other vertebrates (5).

The sad news is that according to researches, coffee is one of the largest sources of mycotoxins in the food supply. And these mycotoxins may be found in low quality brands of coffee. Because of this, individuals most especially those who consume coffee every day, should be aware about this to avoid these toxins from damaging the body. At the present, some coffee companies offer mold free coffee, low mycotoxin coffee, and even mycotoxin-free coffee. The only thing is that you should be aware about the quality of the coffee beans and the process that these beans have undergone.

Aside from the presence of mycotoxins, bad coffee may also be coming from the process of roasting itself. Although roasting may destroy about 70-80 % of mycotoxins, some companies may have poor roasting process and may actually contribute to the addition of more toxins in the coffee beans.

Even temperate treatments like cooking do not destroy some mycotoxins. This is also true for the coffee beans. Even though the beans are being processed, some mycotoxins still remain active thus, posing harm to the human health. Although your cup of coffee will still stimulate your happy hormones and will boost your day, then the risk imposed on your health is inevitable. Because of this, we should really know about the quality of coffee we drink so that we will get more from our body and prevent us from accumulating certain diseases.

Now, Bulletproof Coffee also has its edge since the coffee beans are carefully selected to preserve their quality of having very low mycotoxin levels. Moreover, the roasting process also contributes to a reduction of these toxins.

Safety and Side Effects

Just like other drugs and supplements, people respond to caffeine differently thus making some studies vary from one another. As with the case of caffeine, we have the so called “slow” caffeine metabolizers and the “fast” caffeine metabolizers. People who metabolize caffeine slowly yet tend to consume large amounts may have higher chances of having certain conditions.

When taken in moderation, coffee is generally healthy for most individuals. However, it would be best to take only up to 3 to 4 cups of coffee per day. Due to its half life of about 6 hours, it would be best not to take coffee not later than midday since it may interfere with your sleeping at night. Although some people may fall asleep without any difficulty even after drinking coffee, it may still interfere with your deep sleep.

For some individuals, when Caffeine starts to wear off or when they withdraw from Caffeine intake, they may experience restlessness, fatigue, and depression.

Buying Bulletproof Coffee

If you are interested in purchasing bulletproof coffee or bulletproof MCT oil or Brain Octane oil, click here to have our special discount code / coupon applied to your order, your wallet will thank you for it later.

Click here if you are interested in attending the bulletproof conference.

References:

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bulletproof_Coffee
  2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mycotoxin
  3. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aflatoxin_B1
  4. http://www.foodsafetywatch.org/factsheets/ochratoxins/
  5. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC164220/
  6. http://www.bulletproofexec.com/bulletproof-fasting/
  7. https://www.bulletproofexec.com/bulletproof-intermittent-fasting-the-definitive-guide/

Bulletproof Conference 2016

BulletProof 2016 Conference


UPDATE MARCH 28: The tickets for the conference are now up for sale, click here to buy them or learn more.

UPDATE MARCH 12: Dave Asprey recently announced that the conference will take place in October 2016, check back soon for conference information and discounts.

Dubbed as “The 4th Annual Biohacking Conference”

A place to hear world class experts who share cutting edge information to help with everything from brain training, sleep hacking, and boost your overall health/performance. You will get real hands on experiences you won’t find anywhere as biohacking in general is now starting to pick up steam in the mainstream press. I attended the conference last year and it was a blast, we heard from many doctors and professors on which nootropics work best for which circumstance. The best ways to remain calm and stress free, quick tips and tricks on sleeping better and best of all we were provided with free BulletProof coffee throughout for free (and some FATwater as well).

You can learn more about past Bulletproof Conferences here  and read about the Conference from 2015 here. It was my first time in Pasadena and it is actually a very beautiful city, my girlfriend and I spent 2 weeks in California in total and spent about 5 days at the conference. In terms of the conference, I knew I was in the right place when we were presented with a Butter Mobile right at the entrance of the convention hall. Check it out:

butter-mobile-at-bulletproof

The prices are very reasonable especially given the cost of other conferences, so the 3 day all-access pass is $1,599. The VIP Conference pass is $2,499 which includes a dinner with Dave Asprey and seating in front (oh goody!). The simple 1 day conference pass (usually on the last day) is for $299, and if you are only interested in attending the tech hall — which is full of gadgets and gizmos, it is $99 which can be on any day from Friday the 23rd, Saturday the 24th or the last day on Sunday. Veterans and Students pay only $399 for the whole 3 day conference. click here for additional pricing information.

UPDATE: We are able to provide a full 3 Day All Access, which was $1,599 at a earlybird price of: $799, click here for this deal.

Speakers Announced Thus Far:

Speakers are this conference include: Dave Asprey (The Founder), Bo Eason (High Performance NFL standout), Alberto Villoldo (Spirtuality), Harry Adelson ND (Stem Cells), Amy Killen MD (Stem cells), Leanne Venier (Light), Matt Riemann (Epigenetics), Kelly Starrett (Mobility), Juliet Starrett (Mobility).

Recommended Acommodation & Commute

Westin Pasadena (Which is the host hotel) or Hilton (Pasadena), in all honesty you may also stay a bit further away on “the strip” and with the beautiful weather in Pasadena, the walk is healthy and you may save $ on accommodation. Burbank (Bob Hope Airport) is 30 minutes and LAX is 60 minutes by car to the Convention Center.

Refunds

100% refund by July 1, 2016. 50% refund by September 1.

Workshop information will be getting released and put here accordingly. Being in a room with people who care as much about performance as you do opens you up to new levels of personal development and provides an opportunity that only happens when you step out of your comfort zone, for anyone interested or just curious about the world of biohacking, this is the conference to attend, click here to learn more.

Alpha GPC Effects & Dosage

alpha gpc effects

Alpha GPC Review: Effects and Dosage

Alpha GPC or Alpha Glycerylphosphorylcholine which is also sometimes referred to as Choline Alfoscerate, is one of the many variations of choline supplements available today. In the last post we discussed the best sources of choline. AlphaGPC is a popular and effective source of choline and has a unique property of crossing the blood brain barrier easily, thus delivering superior results faster. It is purified from soy lecithin and is considered to be one of the best choline sources available today, read additional benefits of alpha gpc here. Additionally you can check our past write up on all the benefits of choline as well.

How does Alpha GPC work and what are its benefits?

Since Alpha GPC is water soluble and can easily cross the blood brain barrier, its results are experienced at a faster rate. But how does Alpha GPC really work inside our brain and body? Let’s get to knowhow Alpha GPC acts and what it’s benefits are to the human health.

Alpha GPC for enhanced cognition

One of the commonly sought benefit of Alpha GPC is its influence on an individual’s cognition. This may be attributed to its action on the cholinergic system. It increases the amount of available Choline, which then converts into an increased production of Acetylcholine. Acetylcholine is the neurotransmitter responsible for an individual’s memory, learning and mood. Moreover, it also has a vital role on one’s contraction of muscles, the regulation of the endocrine system, and REM or Rapid Eye Movement sleep cycles (1). Because Alpha GPC increases the levels of Acetylcholine, it may result in an enhanced cognition. This includes increased learning ability, enhanced memory formation, storage and recall, improved attention span and focus, and faster processing speed. Although Alpha GPC is a choline source, it is also considered to be a nootropic because of its cognitive-enhancing properties.

Improved Mood

Researchers have also found that aside from the Cholinergic system, Alpha GPC acts on the Dopaminergic system as well. It serves to increase Dopamine levels in the cerebellum and prefrontal cortex of the brain. Dopamine is the neurotransmitter responsible for an individual’s memory and learning capabilities, attention, pleasurable reward, behaviour and cognition, and most especially for mood and sleep (5). With an increased level of this neurotransmitter, there will be a significant improvement in one’s mood and cognitive abilities. It may also be of great help to deal efficiently with stress, anxiety, depression, and even signs of OCD or Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.

Neuroprotective property

Alpha GPC also appears to have neuroprotective properties. It serves to protect our neurons from damage and helps maintain their health. In this way, there would be an improvement in the signal transmission or communication between the neurons and in the synapses.

The neuroprotective mechanism that Alpha GPC possesses may be attributed to its role in the integrity and structure of our cell membranes. This is because the other half of the Alpha GPC molecule, the glycerophosphate, is a precursor to membrane phospholipids and also plays a role on the repair and maintenance of the brain cell’s membranes. (2)

Alpha GPC increases Growth Hormone

Individuals who wanted to have a significant step up in their cognitive functions are not the only ones inclined to the use of Alpha GPC. Athletes, weight lifters, and other active professionals, are also looking to Alpha GPC as one of their important workout components. This is because studies have shown that Alpha GPC works with our pituitary glands by stimulating the production of Human Growth Hormone or Somatropin. Human Growth Hormone is a small protein that acts on many tissues throughout our body. In children and adolescents specifically, Human Growth Hormone stimulates the growth of bone and cartilage. While in people of all ages, it plays a role in the production of protein and in the utilization of fat. It also interferes with the action of insulin, raises blood sugar levels, and raises the levels of insulin-like growth factor-1 or IGF-1. (3)

Studies have shown that supplementing with Alpha GPC can increase muscle mass while reducing the amount of body fat in healthy adults. It also increases exercise capacity and bone density as well. There would also be an improvement in our cell’s growth, reproduction and repair. (4)

Is Alpha GPC safe to use?

Alpha GPC is known to be a safe supplement and is generally well-tolerated. However, if the choline source is impure or when used beyond the recommended dosages, it may produce some Alpha GPC side effects. These are generally mild and may include headaches, nervousness, dizziness, nausea, fatigue, gastrointestinal problems, decreased appetite, and increased sweating and salivation.

If these reactions are experienced, you might want to lower your daily dosage or cycle its use. For example, you may avoid taking Alpha GPC for a few days and return back to using it.

Alpha GPC Dosage

Generally the recommended dosage of Alpha GPC falls between 300 mg to 1200 mg. The most commonly used dose however, ranges from 300 mg to 600 mg. This daily dose may be divided and taken into multiple administrations if you wanted to have a more constant and sustained release of benefits. You may also take it once a day, normally in the morning since it acts as a stimulant. When taking it into multiple administrations, it would be best not to take Alpha GPC later than midday since it can interfere with your ability to sleep at night.

Knowing the right amount of Alpha GPC you need and when to take it would greatly be a factor in achieving the results you desire. When starting any new supplement such as Alpha GPC, it would be best to start first with the lowest possible effective dose and increase it gradually over time. Moreover, you might also want to consider consulting your doctor or healthcare provider first before starting with any new medication since a person’s condition and health status may play a role.

Stacking Alpha GPC

Working alone, Alpha GPC is already known to be very potent and has its own nootropic benefits. However Choline sources, in general, are a vital component to any nootropic stacks especially when it is paired with the family of Racetams. Click to read the benefits of Piracetam, Pramiracetam benefits, Phenylpiracetam benefits, Aniracetam, and Oxiracetam benefits.

Alpha GPC paired with a Racetam in a stack is one of the best deals today for your nootropic needs. But, how does Alpha GPC contribute to a synergistic effect to the Racetams? Piracetam, for example, works in our system mainly by influencing the cholinergic system. As a result, in order for it to act efficiently, it needs a steady supply of Acetylcholine. And this quality supply of Choline may be provided by Alpha GPC. In this way, the Alpha GPC-Piracetam stack works in both ways by enhancing cognitive function and by synergizing the effects of each other. Moreover when there is insufficient source of Choline, headaches may occur and is one of the most common side effects of the Racetams. With Alpha GPC at hand, you can surely reach your peak cognitive performance while preventing and/or minimizing the occurrence of headaches.

Since Alpha GPC is water soluble, it is fast acting and does not require a meal for a faster absorption. Although the powder form is the most popular one, Alpha GPC may also be administered intravenously.

Aside from the Racetams, Alpha GPC may also be stacked with other potent nootropics such as Noopept. Your personal stack would greatly depend on your own preference and your needs. However, we should take note that combining supplements needs a thorough understanding of each of the drugs you wanted to use. If you are not sure of your stack, you might want to consult your healthcare provider or do your researches first.

If you are looking to buy Alpha GPC click here.

Review Video:

 

References:

  1. http://www.chemistryexplained.com/A-Ar/Acetylcholine.html
  2. http://examine.com/supplements/alpha-gpc/#summary3-1
  3. http://www.health.harvard.edu/diseases-and-conditions/growth-hormone-athletic-performance-and-aging
  4. http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/healthy-aging/in-depth/growth-hormone/art-20045735
  5. http://www.news-medical.net/health/Dopamine-Functions.aspx

Is Alpha GPC the best Choline source?

AlphaGpc Supplement
Many choline supplements are readily available today to choose from, how do you determine which one to take or whether you should naturally get your daily choline intake? In the nootropic world, various kinds of choline supplements can be chosen from. But the question is, how do they differ from one another? And which is the best choline source among them all?

Before naming the different types of choline sources, let’s discuss what choline really is. Choline is a water-soluble nutrient that was first discovered by Adolph Strecker in 1864. By the year 1998, choline was classified as an essential nutrient by the Food and Nutrition Board of the US Institute of Medicine. Our bodies are capable of producing choline however, this is not sufficient for our body’s daily needs. Because of this, choline may be obtained from supplements and a variety of food sources.

Choline is closely related to the Vitamin B-complex family. It plays a role in the structure and integrity of our cell membranes as well as in the process of methylation. Moreover, choline is considered to be the backbone of acetylcholine, an important neurotransmitter in the brain. Acetylcholine or Ach, is vital for the proper functioning of our neurons and is closely associated to one’s memory and cognitive functions (1). Because of this reason, Choline has been one of the essential supplements in the nootropic world and is even used with other supplements for a more potent cognitive benefit. Aside from that, Choline can also prevent and lessen some negative side effects associated with Racetam use.

What are the natural sources of choline?

Before the arrival of choline supplements, how did people get their daily dose? various food sources contain a significant amount of choline in them. It can be found in many plants and animal foods as well as in some processed foods. And, it has discovered that the food with the highest levels of choline is egg. Yes, those eggs that you ate for your daily breakfast is not just your ordinary breakfast meal. Below are the top 10 food sources that have the highest levels in choline with their corresponding specified portion.

Top 10 Choline Sources

1. Eggs
1 whole egg= 146.90 mg 35% DRI/DV

Eggs are considered one of the healthiest foods on earth and have numerous essential compounds in it. Aside from its high levels of choline content, eggs have been recognized as a source of high quality protein. It also contains high amounts of Vitamin B3, Vitamin B2, Manganese, Selenium, Omega-3 fatty acids, amino acids, and so much more. These nutrients each play a vital role in our body’s proper functioning and promotion of a healthy body.


2. Shrimps
4 oz= 153.54 mg 36% DRI/DV

Aside from being an excellent source of choline, Shrimps contain significantly high levels of various important nutrients needed for the body’s proper functioning. To name a few, they are Selenium, Vitamin B12, Protein, Phosphorus, and Copper. Shrimps also play a role as an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant agent as well as having omega-3 fatty acids.


3. Scallops
4 oz= 125.53 mg 30% DRI/DV

Scallops are known for having high levels of choline, Vitamin B12, Iodine, Phosphorus, Protein, and other essential compounds. It serves to promote a healthier cardiovascular system as well as in cancer prevention and age-related cognitive decline.


4. Cod
4 oz= 90.38 mg 21% DRI/DV

Aside from its choline content, Cod provides high levels of other essential compounds such as Vitamin B12, Iodine, Selenium, Phosphorus, Protein, and among many others. It serves to promote a healthier cardiovascular function as well as in cancer prevention.


5. Collard Greens
1 cup= 72.96 mg 17% DRI/DV

Aside from being an excellent source of choline, Collard greens contain significantly high levels of Vitamin K, Vitamin A, manganese, Vitamin C, and other essential compounds. Like Mustard greens, Collard greens also play in cancer prevention by acting to the body’s detox, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory systems.


6. Brussel Sprouts
1 cup= 63.34 mg 15% DRI/DV

Brussels Sprouts are known for its high levels of choline, Vitamin K content, Vitamin C, and folate levels. It has also been shown to play a role in cancer prevention by acting on the body’s detox, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory systems.


7. Broccoli
1 cup= 62.56 mg 15% DRI/DV

Broccoli is known to be an excellent source of choline, Vitamin K, Vitamin C, Chromium, and many other essential compounds. Its health benefits include addressing the development of cancer and its relationship to the three metabolic problems: chronic inflammation, oxidative stress, and inadequate detoxification.


8. Swiss Chard
1 cup= 50.23 mg 12% DRI/DV

Swiss Chard is not only one of the most famous vegetables in the Mediterranean but also is one of the most nutritious vegetables. It belongs to the chenopod family along with Spinach, beets, and quinoa. It is an excellent source of choline, Vitamin K, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, and many other essential compounds.


9. Cauliflower
1 cup= 48.48 mg 11% DRI/DV

Cauliflowers contain significantly high amounts of choline, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Folate, and among many other essential nutrients. It poses its benefits to the human body as an anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory agent and supports a healthier cardiovascular system.


10. Asparagus
1 cup= 46.98 mg 11% DRI/DV

Asparagus contains a variety of essential nutrients such as choline, Vitamin K, Folate, Copper, and among many others. It has anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties and also supports cardiovascular health. (1)

And, So, What is Alpha GPC?

Alpha GPC or Alpha Glycerylphosphorylcholine which is also sometimes called Choline Alfoscerate, is one of the many variations of choline supplements available today. Many people regard Alpha GPC as the best available choline supplement since it has a slightly different pathway for increasing the levels of Acetylcholine in the brain. One of its unique characteristics is that it is able to pass the blood brain barrier easily thus, delivering its results faster. Aside from the enhanced cognitive function it provides through the influence on the cholinergic system, Alpha GPC also enhances mood through the dopaminergic system and increases strength and lean muscle mass through its influence on the pituitary glands. Alpha GPC also has neuroprotective properties. It serves to maintain the health of our neurons and neuronal communication within the brain. Also, it helps form new brain cells while preventing damage. With this mechanism of action that Alpha GPC possesses, it keeps our brain young, healthy, and functioning at its peak performance.

Buy alphaGPC

Alpha GPC is more concentrated and more effective (alpha gpc’s benefits here) than the other choline supplements on a per weight basis. Although Alpha GPC tends to be more expensive, it is almost twice as strong and potent from Citicoline, another good source of choline. Meaning, Alpha GPC requires a much lower dosage to produce the same effects as the other choline supplements. Let’s say for example, Alpha GPC’s recommended daily dosage is from 250 mg to 500 mg. This dosage is already sufficient to provide you with cognitive and health benefits. Meanwhile, the other choline sources might require you to double that dose in order to see results. In this way, you would be paying less from your money but at a higher quality of choline.

What are the other Choline Sources?

Aside from Alpha GPC, some other good choline sources available today are Centrophenoxine (Lucidril), Choline Bitartrate, and Citicoline. Centrophenoxine is a synthetic version that is derived from DMAE. Due to phospholipid transformation, it may cause a significant increase in Acetylcholine levels in the brain. It has anti-aging and detox properties and provides a boost in the brain’s energy levels.

Choline Bitartrate on the other hand, is another choline source that is fairly cheap to buy and use. Although it has a high concentration of choline, it cannot efficiently pass the blood brain barrier. In this way, a lot of potential effect is put to waste.

Another choline source is Citicoline, also referred to as CDP Choline. One unique characteristic of which is that it undergoes a double conversion – it splits into choline and cytidine, both of which produce cognitive benefits. Citicoline improves mood and energy as well as it promotes a healthier brain.

Choosing a supplement such as that of a choline source, greatly depends upon your choice and preferences. It would be best to try different choline sources and see for yourself which one is most effective for you. You can visit our shop to see which nootropic vendors we recommend and trust.

Video Review of this supplement:

 

References:

  1. http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=nutrient&dbid=50

Primer on Choline Sources

choline supplements

Chances are if you are taking piracetam or other racetams and don’t have a proper diet, you may need to supplement on choline to avoid headaches. I will talk about what choline is, the different sources of choline and why you need it in your diet. There are many sources of choline, we will discuss the right one for you.

Choline is a simple water soluble nutrient, and is usually organized in the same group as B vitamins. Recently in 1998 it was classified as an essential nutrient by the American Food and Nutrition of Board, which is part of the Institute of Medicine.

Choline generally helps with the development of the brain and the retention of memory (as tested in baby rats). When pregnant women are given choline, their offspring having a fully developed hippocampus (which helps with long term memory consolidation).

Choline helps your brain with muscle control via acetylcholine — acetylcholine activates muscles, and is a major neurotransmitter in the autonomic nervous system. Research has shown that memory, intelligence, and mood are mediated in part by the metabolism of acetylcholine.

Sources of Choline in Foods: Beef Liver, Cauliflower, Eggs (yolks), Broccoli, Cod Fish, Spinach, Chicken, Kidney Beans among others. The list is in Descending order, meaning the highest choline amount per mg is from Beef Liver in our list.

So, how much choline should be had daily by an adult male? The right Intake amount per day for an adult male is 550 mg/day. Additionally if you are not interested in eating real food (which is the best way to get choline) you can try supplementing. You can see if you can buy beef liver capsules, which are not too expensive.

The second way is directly buying choline supplements, such as Phosphatidylcholine, which has 13% choline based on weight. Choline Salts such as Choline Bitartrate is also a good options as it’s effective and very cheap, and for this reason it is most commonly stacked with Racetams. What we recommend is you take Alpha GPC (benefits of AlphaGPC here) and CDP Choline (also known as Citicoline) as a choline source, as it is much stronger and can be considered nootropic by themselves. The reason Alpha GPC and Citicoline seem “stronger” is because they convert to Acetylcholine more efficiently then say salts. Lastly, there is some anecdotal evidence suggesting that salts causes headaches for those stacking it with racetams.

AlphaGPC is 40% choline by weight as opposed to Phosphatidylcholine which is 13% and is able to cross the blood brain barrier intact. CDP Choline and Alpha GPC both contribute to acetylcholine and PC synthesis, they both raise brain levels of choline effectively, both are naturally occurring, both have helped patients with dementia, both increase AhCE. Now the differences?  AlphaGPC is capable of increasing Growth Hormone (may be good if you are going to be bench pressing. Additionally it has been banned by some athletic organizations). CDP Choline is about half or 18% choline by weight, CDP restores dopamine receptor densities in rodents. CDP raises uridine + choline levels which are thought to work synergistically to create phosphatidylcholine.

In terms of safety and side effects, citicoline has a good safety record (reference provided below). The most common side effects that affected 3% of the patients out of over 2800+ was digestive disturbances and appetite suppressing effects when over 200mg/day was consumed.

Benefits of Drinking Mineral Water

Should You Drink Mineral Water-
What is Mineral Water?

Before going any further, let’s first define what mineral water really is. According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration:

“Mineral water is any natural water that contains at least 250 parts per million of total dissolved solids (TDS). It must be verified through a lab test whereby a litre of water, evaporated at 180 degrees C, should leave a residue of minerals and salts.

Up to 249 mg/liter it is classified as ‘Spring Water’.

From 250 to 500 mg/liter, it is considered ‘Low Mineral Content’ or Light Mineral Water and,

Above 500 mg/liter, normal or High Mineral Content.

This mineral water must be from a geologically and physically protected underground water source. It can either be flat or sparkling. No minerals may be added to this water” (1)

Now, let’s discuss why water in general, is very important to our bodies. Approximately 70% of our bodies are made up of water; even our organs are composed of a large quantity of water. Moreover, we lose body water each day through perspiration and other body wastes. In fact, about 2.4 liters of water should be replaced daily. The lost water should be replaced in order to maintain proper bodily functions such as:

  • Transporting oxygen and nutrients to our cells
  • Assisting in bowel movements
  • Regulation of body temperature
  • Preventing urinary tract infections and maintaining proper kidney function
  • Regulation of blood pressure levels
  • Preventing our skin from getting dry by keeping it moisturized (1)

Is Mineral Water Bad for You?

Over the years, drinking mineral water has become a part of our daily routine. But did you know that the water we are drinking may be more than just a thirst quencher? Yes, you heard it right; mineral water might be one of the best and safest beverages around. Despite the debates and claims that mineral water is not that beneficial to our body and can actually cause harm, a lot of the evidence states otherwise. I personally believe that there are many advantages of drinking mineral water. The name itself indicates that mineral water contains minerals, and these minerals are vital for the proper functioning of our bodies.


So, What do we get from drinking Mineral water?

Basically, mineral water contains essential compounds needed in our body. This includes Sulfate, Magnesium, Calcium, Potassium, and Sodium, to name a few. The benefits of sulfate are diverse and include, supporting joints, muscles and nervous system as well as general body detoxification (2). Magnesium and Clacium on the other hand, are important compounds involved in maintaining strong bones. Moreover, Magnesium helps regulate proper blood pressure levels (3). Other benefits include the following:

 

  1. Replacing Electrolytes

As mentioned earlier, we lose electrolytes and minerals from our bodies on a daily basis- through sweat and other bodily wastes. By consuming mineral water, we can help replenish the water that was lost and maintain the balance of electrolytes in our bodies. (1)

  1. Lose Weight

Since mineral water doesn’t contain calories and is fat-free, you don’t have to worry about gaining weight. Unlike other beverages available in the market such as sodas, juices and many others, mineral water does not promote weight gain. This is also the reason why some people opt to use “Water Therapy” in order to lose weight. In this kind of diet program, when it isn’t meal time yet, people just drink water instead of eating foods when they are hungry. This allows them to feel full and will prevent them from craving for food. Moreover, Mayo Clinic suggests that greater weight loss can be achieved by cutting calories from our beverages rather than cutting calories from our meals. (4)

  1. Calcium for our Bones

Mineral Water contains a decent amount of calcium. Therefore, people who suffer from lactose intolerance might benefit from drinking mineral water due to the calcium content. After menopause, women are at high risk of having bone loss, which may lead to certain bone related illnesses such as osteoporosis.   Though, drinking mineral water on a regular basis can help maintain normal bone density. (4)

  1. Lowers your Cholesterol

Maintaining normal levels of cholesterol in your body leads to proper cardiovascular function, thus preventing you from developing various types of heart disease. When consuming mineral water, Low Density Lipoproteins or LDL, may be reduced. These LDLs are the “bad” cholesterols and are one of the greatest risk factors for developing heart disease. Moreover, the potassium and magnesium content in mineral water help support heart function. (4)

  1. Maintains Muscle Performance

The magnesium content in mineral waters plays a key role in the proper functioning of our muscles. Magnesium acts by facilitating proper relaxation and contraction of our muscles. Since of magnesium deficiency includes, but is not limited to, muscle aches and cramps. (4)

  1. Skin Hydration

Drinking mineral water on a regular basis can actually help hydrate your skin. Because it contains silica, it strengthens the spongy cells found between elastin and collagen fibers and also slows the formation of wrinkles. (4)

 

Conclusion:

 So, is mineral water bad for you? Drinking mineral water actually does give you a lot of health benefits, as discussed above. However, we should stay sceptical and read the mineral content of each brand since some brands may contain higher Sodium content, and that may not be of great use to us. We recommend giving Fiji Water a try.

 

References:

Adderall Crash

Adderall Crash

Adderall Crash

Why do some people who consume Adderall also consume L-Tyrosine as an added supplement? Do they really synergize the effects of one another? Let’s take a closer look at these two supplements and find out why they are a great combination indeed.

What is Adderall?

Adderall is a single-entity amphetamine product that combines the neutral sulfate salts of dextroamphetamine and amphetamine, with the dextroisomer of amphetamine saccharate and d, l-amphetamine aspartate monohydrate. Since it is an amphetamine, Adderall acts as a Central Nervous System stimulant and is thought to block the reuptake of norepinephrine and dopamine into the presynaptic neuron and therefore, increase the release of these monoamines into the extraneuronal space. 1

Moreover, Adderall is a prescription drug and is regarded as a controlled substance in the US. In other words, those interested in using the substance cannot just purchase it over the counter. Instead, they must obtain a legitimate prescription from their doctor and then proceed to purchasing it. Since Adderall use can lead to dependence and can potentially be abused, a prescription is absolutely necessary.

 

Adderall and ADHD

Adderall has been regarded as the mainstay medication for the treatment of ADHD. ADHD, or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, is a chronic neurodevelopmental and behavioral disorder, considered to have neurobiologic origins. It is diagnosed on the basis of the number, severity, and duration of three clusters of behavioral problems: inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity. It is the most commonly diagnosed behavior disorder in children. ADHD was originally called minimal brain damage, then minimal brain dysfunction, and in the mid-1900s the term hyperkinetic reaction of childhood was given to the symptoms. It most commonly affects men and has a high rate of heritability.

Although the exact etiology of ADHD is unknown, a combination of organic, genetic and environmental factors is thought to be involved. A variety of factors put a child at risk for symptoms of ADHD:

  • ADHD is seen more often in children who have family members with ADHD, especially the father, the brother or an uncle.
  • There is also an increased incidence of substance abuse, conduct disorders, learning disabilities, depression, and antisocial personality disorder in families of children with ADHD.
  • Chromosomal or genetic abnormalities such as fragile X syndrome have been implicated with ADHD. A sex-linked factor may be operating because the disorder is much more common in boys than girls.
  • Other risk factors include exposure to toxins or medications, perinatal complications, chronic otitis media, head trauma, meningitis, neurologic infections, and mental disorders such as the affective disorders.

 

Pathophysiology of ADHD

The neurotransmitters dopamine and norepinephrine are implicated in the pathophysiology of ADHD. In some children, there may be an absence or insufficiency of these neurotransmitters.

The preceding neurotransmitters normally occur in high concentrations in the brain. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter involved in reward, risk taking, impulsivity, and mood. Norepinephrine modulates attention, arousal and mood.

Impulsiveness

  • It is hypothesized that children who lack these neurotransmitters experience learning difficulties in reading, math, and language, and are prone to impulsivity.
  • The fact that some children with ADHD display decreased symptoms in stressful situations (such as in the doctor’s or principal’s office) provides additional support for this theory, because stress increases the level of norepinephrine.

Hyperactivity

Another neurochemical theory suggests that:

  • The symptoms result from an excess of norepinephrine and/or alteration in the reticular activating system of the midbrain, an area that controls consciousness and attention.
  • This excess abnormality interferes with the function of filtering extraneous stimuli. Consequently, children are unable to focus on one stimulus and are compelled to respond to every stimulus in the environment.

Other theories suggest that symptoms of ADHD result from:

  • Dysfunction in the brain circuits of the behavioral inhibition system
  • Structural abnormalities in the prefrontal cortex, caudate, and thalamus
  • A gene variant known to code for a receptor for dopamine. 2

Adderall may help a person with ADHD pay more attention, concentrate, and stop fidgeting.

What is L-Tyrosine?

Tyrosine is one of the nonessential amino acids in the body and is made from phenylalanine, another amino acid. It is regarded as the building block of protein and can be found in our diet, especially in dairy products, meats, eggs, fishes, and beans. Tyrosine is crucial for the brain’s neurotransmitters dopamine, epinephrine, and norepinephrine (for proper neuronal communication and regulation of mood). Tyrosine also aids in the production of melanin and in the proper functioning of organs responsible for making and regulating hormones. 3

 

Adderall and L-Tyrosine

At present, it is a common practice to take L-Tyrosine when using Adderall. This is mainly because Adderall may cause withdrawal reactions that L-Tyrosine may address. When taken in high doses or in a long duration of time, Adderall may cause severe tiredness, sleep problems, changes in mood and depression. Despite the benefits that Adderall provides, this medication may cause one to become dependent and addicted to it. 4

Adderall can intensify the release of neurotransmitters in the brain and can address problems such as ADHD however, when the storage of these neurotransmitters are used up, low feelings, exhaustion, and a reduced amount of energy the following day may result; this is referred to as Adderall Comedown. With this scenario, users may notice problems with focus and attentiveness, even more than people who have ADHD. L-Tyrosine on the other hand, can counteract this Adderall Crash. Since it acts as a pre-cursor to the preceding neurotransmitters, it can help replenish the levels of those chemicals. It is recommended that L-Tyrosine is taken the day after consuming Adderall, as it can prevent you from experiencing the after effects of Adderall or having the Adderall crash.

If you are supplementing you should definitely consider using Trackmystack as a “nootropic tracker” to manage the effectiveness of your medical stack. To see what others nootropics others are taking you can see the nootropic stack list here.

References:
1 http://www.rxlist.com/adderall-drug.htm

Silliman University Institute of Rehabilitative Sciences Book Compilation Batch 2014.

3 http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/supplement/tyrosine

4 http://www.webmd.com/drugs/2/drug-63163/adderall-oral/details#uses