Noopept is one of the most widely consumed brain supplements in the world. Alcohol is easily the most widely-consumed psychoactive drug in the world, by some margin too. So it makes sense that Noopept and alcohol will someties end up being used at the same time.
However, the idea of using Noopept and alcohol together raises some concerns, and quite rightly too.
Alcohol is unarguably one of the most dangerous drugs in the world, causing severe side effects in almost every user, and posing substiantial addiction risks.
Alcohol is also known to negatively interact with amost ever drug on the market, nootropic study drugs like Noopept included.
So, can you take Noopept and alcohol together?
Is it safe to mix alcohol and Noopept?
What kind of side effects might you experience?
To answer this question, let’s examine how Noopept and alcohol work separately, and then look at how these drugs interact.
What does Noopept do?
Noopept is a synthetic nootropic drug. It is closely associated with Piracetam, the original nootropic drug. While Noopept isn’t a racetam like Phenylpiracetam or Aniracetam, it was initially based on Piracetam, and the two nootropics have very similar effects.
Both Noopept and Piracetam are known to rapidly increase focus and alertness, promote working memory function, and reduce anxiety.
However, Noopept is often favored over Piracetam due to its much smaller active dose, its longer action, and its greater effects on anxiety.
The smaller active dose is no small benefit; you can generally get the same benefits from 30mg of Noopept as you will from 2000mg of Piracetam.
On top of that, Noopept is known to have lasting benefits, an excellent side effect profile, and a positive effect on mood.
So how does Noopept do all of this?
While there is some disagreement over how Noopept works, the clinical evidence suggests that Noopept primarily works by increasing the release of Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) in the brain.
BDNF is a neurotrophic factor which controls the growth and maintenance of neurons in the brain. Higher levels of BDNF means more total neurons, and healthier neurons overall.
More, healthier neurons means better overall cognitive performance. So by increasing BDNF levels, Noopept effectively improves every aspect of cognitive function in a deep, lasting way.
Higher BDNF levels is also linked to reduced anxiety and improved mood.
What does alcohol do?
Most of you know full well what alcohol does in terms of its effects. It reduces mental and physical tension, increases excitability, lightens mood, and lowers inhibitions.
But exactly how alcohol does all of this is not quite so well known.
Alcohol is – first and foremost – a central nervous system depressant. By depressing activity in the central nervous syetem (CNS), alcohol decreases nervous activity, thus lowering physical tension, reducing anxiety, and promoting calm relaxation.
The way alcohol suppresses CNS activity is by activating receptors of GABA, or gamma-Aminobutyric acid. GABA is the main inhibitory neurotransmitter in the human CNS; it is what calms nerve activity down, while glutamate works to speed things up.
Increasing GABA activity is why alcohol has the effects it does; more GABA activity means lowered inhibitions, reduced anxiety and tension, and improved mood.
How do alcohol and Noopept interact?
At first glance, it might seem like Noopept and alcohol have nothing to do with one another.
Noopept sitmulates the release of BDNF, while alcohol primarily works via activating GABA receptors, mimmicking the effects of more GABA in the system.
However, neurotransmitter and neurotrophic factor systems can interact in surprising ways. This is especially true if those two systems have similar effects on behavior and cognitive function, as is the case with GABA and BDNF (and by extension, Noopept and alcohol).
Taking Noopept and alcohol together can produce unexpected and unpredictable effects.
Most notably, mixing Noopept and alcohol is known to produce a dramatic drop in alertness, focus, and inhibitions, making a person appear far more “drunk” than they might otherwise be from drinking alcohol alone.
People may find that a combination of Noopept and alcohol makes them act in strange ways, similar to being drunk, but much more exaggerated.
The physical effects of mixing alcohol and Noopept on your brain cells is also not understood at all; the two drugs could easily interact in a way which makes the brain damage inflicted by alcohol even worse.
Final considerations: Mixing alcohol and nootropics
It is generally a very bad idea to mix alcohol and nootropics.
The potential for unforseen interactions is too great, and the potential long-term side effects are not known.
But if you must mix nootropics and alcohol (for whatever reason), then we strongly recommend only drinking when using natural nootropics and steering clear of synthetic nootropic drugs.
Paul Tardner is the Head Writer at IJEST.org. Paul is a former academic and research scientist. He now dedicates his time to his own research into nootropics, with a particular focus on cognitive enhancement in old age. You can learn more about Paul from his profile page.