The Best Nootropics for Promoting A Good Night’s Sleep

Are you researching good supplements or Nootropics for sleep? Most of us have already experienced a lack of sleep at some point in our lives but the current stats are alarming with an estimated 50-70 million Americans affected with sleep problems and similar percentage results in other places in the world.

The Best Nootropic Supplements for SleepWhether we have periodic bouts of difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep or in a constant battle with insomnia, lack of sleep disturbs the body and the minds ability to rest and reboot.

This not only results in less energy and productivity but over time can negatively affect our health and brain function.

We spend approximately a third of our lives sleeping, a natural and critical state that helps rejuvenate and restore every system in the body and resist disease. While the body is restfully sleeping, the brain is processing and retaining information in a calm state which has been found to be critical to memory functions and important to optimal cognition.

Poor quality of sleep, lack of sleep or insomnia can be rooted and caused by so many different factors from stress and a simple inability to relax to illness, exposure to light, jet lag, anxiety, depression, medications and many other factors that can disrupt sleeping patterns. Finding and addressing the root cause is obviously the best way to solve the problem.

While Nootropic supplements are most commonly known and used to improve cognitive abilities like memory, learning, reasoning and focus, there are certain ones that can significantly help your ability to fall asleep, stay asleep and even encourage a more restful sleep.

By promoting the production and modulation of several different brain chemicals like GABA, Dopamine or Serotonin that play a role or involved in regulating mood and sleep or by smoothing out alpha brain waves that promote deep states of relaxation, they may help address or defend against some of the problems with sleep.

If you are not getting the sufficient amount of sleep nor quality of sleep you need to perform optimally both mentally and physically, below is a list, with brief overviews of the top Nootropics for sleep that are considered to be some of the best for promoting a restful nights sleep.

Top Nootropics For Sleep

1. Melatonin

Type: Sleep Supplement
Used For: Insomnia, Jet Lag, Sleep Disorders, CFS, Anti-Aging, Restless Leg Syndrome, Disturbed Sleep-Wake Cycles

Melatonin Summary

Melatonin supplements are most commonly used to reduce the time it takes to fall asleep and to promote improvement in sleep quality. It is grouped together with Nootropics or cognitive enhancers since this is an important factor for effective memory consolidation processes that occur as you sleep.

Melatonin is a hormone secreted by the pineal gland in the brain which acts as the body’s internal clock, regulating other hormones and maintaining our natural circadian rhythm, also known as the sleep/wake cycle that is occurring in the background of your brain, cycling between sleepiness and alertness.

This gland contains cells that respond to light and darkness, informing the body and brain when it is time to be alert and when it is time to rest. During the day, the production of Melatonin is higher when its light outside and declines towards the evening when its dark to induce sleep. Jet lag, aging, high stress, shift work, exposure to light and many other factors can all throw off our internal clock and disrupt the release of melatonin.

2. Phenibut

Type: Gabaergic Compound/Mood Supplement
Used For: Mood Enhancement, Relaxation, Stress, Anxiety, Social Anxiety, Sleep, Depression, Attention, Focus, Cognition

Phenibut Summary

Phenibut is an analogue of the primary inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA or gamma-aminobutyric acid with an added phenyl ring making it capable of crossing the blood-brain barrier. GABA produces a calming effect in the brain and this supplement promotes relaxation and feelings of tranquility. It is most commonly used for anxiety, to balance mood and as a sleep aid.

GABA serves as a balancer, counteracting glutamate, the primary excitatory chemical that stimulates greater activity in neurons but when overstimulation of glutamate occurs, neurons can fire too fast and lead to feelings of anxiousness, restlessness, poor mood and insomnia.

Phenibut induces the same effect as proper GABA levels and helps restore balance. When used as a sedative or ataractic supplement, it is considered to be a powerful sleep aid that can help restore natural sleeping patterns and achieve a more restful deep nights sleep.

3. Lemon Balm

Type: Herbal Supplement
Used For: Stress Relief, Anxiety, Insomnia, Restlessness, Headaches, Toothaches, Cramps and more.

Lemon Balm Summary

Lemon Balm is a memory enhancing and anxiety relieving Nootropic, also known as Melissa officinalis. It is regarded as a calming herb with a mild lemon scent derived from the Lamiaceae mint plant with its most common uses revolving around inducing relaxation, relieving stress and promoting a deep, restful sleep.

This herb and its extracts contain flavonoids, triterpenes, tannins and phenolic acids that are all contributors to the various effects of this supplement. One the most important compounds in Lemon Balm is Rosmarinic acid which is known to encourage greater blood flow and has been found to act as a GABA transaminase inhibitor in the brain or inhibits this enzyme that removes GABA, a neurotransmitter most associated with calming effects in the brain.

While Lemon Balm (Melissa Officinalis) is commonly used to help reduce daily stress, when used at night just prior to bedtime, it promotes relaxation and helps quiet the mind from restless thoughts which is thought to be a primary cause in people who suffer from insomnia.


Type: Gabaergic Supplement
Used For: Anxiety, Improved Mood, Stress Relief, Sleep and more.

GABA Summary

GABA (Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid) is an amino acid produced in the brain from glutamate and vitamin B6. It acts as the primary inhibitory (calming) neurotransmitter in the central nervous system working to prevent over-stimulation of Glutamate, the primary excitatory (stimulating) neurotransmitter.

While Glutamate (glutamic acid) is crucial for brain function including memory and learning, too much stimulation can lead to anxiety, PTSD, depression and insomnia. The proper balance of GABA acts to calm these receiving nerve cells from becoming overstimulated.

GABA supplements are often referred to as natural tranquilizers used to promote a more relaxed state and for their many potential benefits for reducing symptoms of anxiety, stress and helping in the battle against insomnia.

5. Ashwagandha

Type: Adaptogen/Natural Nootropic
Used For: Mood Enhancement, Stress Relief, Anxiety, Depression, Insomnia, Cognitive Function, Focus, Anti-Aging, Arthritis, Inflammation, Infertility, Aphrodisiac

Ashwagandha Summary

Ashwagandha (also called Indian Ginseng or the Withania Somnifera plant root) is considered one of the most highly prized adaptogenic herbs, compounds which are specifically thought to help the body cope with the physical and chemical effects of stress.

To this effect, the plant contains glycowithanolids, alkaloids and steroidal lactones which are thought to help balance the body’s primary stress hormone, cortisol. Cortisol is used by the body to respond to stress but when levels are consistently too high, it can lead to associated symptoms such as anxiety, depression, irritability and chronic insomnia.

A very popularly used herbal Nootropic to boost physical and mental well-being, it is also believed to have exceptional effects as a calming agent, that may reduce psychological responses to stress which may also lead to improvements in thinking and cognition.

6. L-Theanine

Type: Amino Acid
Used For: Mental Performance, Mood, Focus, Attention, Relaxation, Anxiety, Stress, Quality of Sleep, Cognitive Function

L-Theanine Summary

L-Theanine (L-gamma-glutamylethylamide) is a naturally occurring amino acid (a building block for proteins) found in the components of green tea leaves and other types of real tea. It was discovered in 1949 in the camellia sinensis plant species and is also found in small amounts in the edible Boletus badius mushroom.

Once it reaches the brain, it is believed to target important neurotransmitters and their receptors Dopamine, GABA and Serotonin, boosting their levels. These brain chemical messengers are associated with mood, the regulation of sleep-wake cycles, stress levels and cognition.

L-Theanine is also a unique supplement since it appears to trigger an increase in alpha brain waves, which occurs from synchronized electrical impulses in the brain when large amounts of neurons communicate with each other. Interestingly, this is the same brain state when meditating and is associated with enhanced mental relaxation and concentration.

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