The Best Natural Supplement to Improve Memory- Is it Huperzine A?

Huperzine A is regarded to be one of the best natural Nootropic supplements to boost memory performance and enhance cognition. It is popularly used among students to encourage better learning capacity and among adults looking to keep their memory sharp.

Type: Acetylcholinesterase Inhibitor/Natural Nootropic
Used For: Memory Enhancement, Learning, Focus, Mental Clarity, Age-Related Memory Impairment, Alertness, Energy, Alzheimer’s Disease
Half-Life: 10hrs-14hrs
Typical Dosage: 50 mcg-200 mcg per day
Some Possible Drug Interactions: Cholinergic and  Anti-Cholinergic Drugs
Supplement Interactions: No known interactions

What is Huperzine A?


Huperzine A (Hup A or Selagine) is a naturally derived alkaloid compound purified from the Chinese club moss plant Huperzia Serrata, native to Indian and Southeast Asia. This firmoss is known in China as Qian Ceng Ta and was used as a traditional folk medicine for centuries to treat a broad range of conditions from fever and inflammation to schizophrenia.

Huperzine A Supplement Benefits & UsesResearch on this naturally occurring alkaloid began in the 1980’s, leading to its potential promising role in the future for improving memory, cognitive abilities and acting as a neuroprotectant in people suffering from neurological problems such as Alzheimer’s.

The extract from this plant contains an organic sesquiterpene alkaloid (Huperzine A) that inhibits the enzyme acetylcholinesterase from breaking down an important neurotransmitter that plays a vital role in memory and several cognitive functions.

This natural Nootropic is also particularly known to significantly enhance several aspects of memory function such as formation, storage and recall, making it likely to be highly useful for healthy adults who are looking to enhance memory performance and boost brain power.

It is good to note that Huperzine A (Selagine or brand name Cerebra) is often confused with prescription medications that have similar names, in particular, selegiline (Eldepryl), Celebrex, Celexa or Cerebyx.

Although Huperzine A is highly regarded as one of the best natural Nootropics to enhance memory, you may want to read on for more information on many of its other potential benefits, how it works, some common reviews on its effects and guidelines on how to use this Nootropic safely.

How Does Huperzine A Work in the Brain?


Huperzine A works by promoting higher levels of Acetylcholine in the brain, an important neurotransmitter associated with neuroplasticity (the brain’s ability to adapt and store new information) and vital to several basic mental functions such as memory formation, learning, attention and focus.

This supplement acts as a natural acetylcholinesterase (AChE) inhibitor, blocking this enzyme from breaking down this neurotransmitter in the synaptic cleft, which results in raising the levels of Acetylcholine, specifically in the brain.

Many FDA approved prescription medications to treat Alzheimer’s are acetylcholinesterase inhibitors since low levels of this neurotransmitter and the dysfunction of the cholinergic system has been highly associated with several neurodegenerative diseases, especially dementia.

In addition, Acetylcholine is linked to working memory capacity and the notion of fluid intelligence. As we age, natural levels of this neurotransmitter slowly decline, leading to sporadic lapses in memory in healthy people, particularly after the age of 55.

Huperzine A also seems to act as a neuroprotectant, working as an NMDA receptor antagonist which acts to block the effects of excessive or toxic levels of Glutamate. While Glutamate controls memory function and supports synaptic plasticity, too much can lead to damaging or the death of brain cells, supporting overall brain health over time.

This compound also seems to protect neurons against beta-amyloid-induced dysfunction by reducing the amount of free radicals that negatively affect ATP levels (energy source) in the mitochondria. Beta-amyloids are found in senile plaques associated with Alzheimer’s disease.

Finally, Huperzine A promotes production and maintenance of levels of NGF (Nerve Growth Factor) which is involved in encouraging brain cell development and their maintenance and repair, vital to the process of developing long-term memories.

What are the Benefits and Uses of Huperzine A?


Huperzine A is praised as one of the most potent memory enhancers available on the market that doesn’t require a prescription. Its effects on memory have led to this supplements clinical uses and its popularly as a common ingredient in countless Nootropic stacks.

As a Nootropic supplement, it is most typically used by students to enhance learning capacity and memory as well as by people who are looking to protect against age-related memory decline.

The effects of Huperzine A on memory and learning performance has been studied on healthy adolescents suffering from memory problems. Thirty-four students were divided into two groups and given a memory test. One group was given Huperzine A and the other a placebo. At the 4 week period, they were retested and Huperzine A was found to significantly enhance memory and the ability to retain and recall facts when compared to placebo.

While most studies on this compound have focused on memory enhancement, many user reviews have reported several additional benefits. User logs say that they experience higher energy levels, alertness, less brain fog, better communication skills and vivid dreams when taking this product.

These effects may be more powerful for some people and less for others. Individual brain chemistry and sensitivity to supplements can differ from person to person, which is not uncommon when using brain supplements. Some users note that this supplement may be more effective for them when stacked with other Nootropic supplements such as Alpha GPC or Citicoline, both choline sources that are precursors to Acetylcholine.

In addition, Huperzine A has seen a considerable amount of clinical use in the treatment of Alzheimer’s Disease and mental deficiencies in China.

Highly reduced concentrations of Acetylcholine have been implicated in this neurodegenerative disease and others. In fact, many of the clinical studies on the effects of Huperzine A have been focused on its potential use for treating symptoms of Alzheimer’s, where it seems to counteract the decline of associated key cognitive functions related to this disease.

The use of Huperzine A in several randomized controlled clinical trials appears to improve memory and cognitive abilities in patients with Alzheimer’s disease within two months of daily use. In another study on patients with senile dementia, positive results were seen within the first month.

Chinese club moss (Huperzine A) continues to be used in China and parts of Asia as a traditional medicine to treat memory and concentration difficulties, lack of energy and many other conditions.

Huperzine A has not been evaluated by the U.S Food and Drug Administration and is not approved to treat, prevent or cure any diseases or disorders.

Does Huperzine A Have Side Effects?


Huperzine A seems to be a very safe memory supplement when taken at the appropriate dosages with a low risk of side effects. However, it is commonly cycled to avoid tolerance.

In a small number of cases, mild side effects have been reported including nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. If taken in excessively large dosages it can cause elevated blood pressure, slow heart rate, muscle twitching and slurred speech.

Due to this risk, individuals with heart disease or a history of heart problems should consult with a medical professional first before taking this supplement.

The safety of Huperzine A on pregnant or nursing women is unknown. As a precaution, this supplement should be avoided.

It is not recommended for individuals diagnosed with epilepsy or seizure disorders, emphysema, urinary tract blockages, peptic ulcers, gastrointestinal tract blockages or for people taking medication for glaucoma.

Combining Huperzine A with any medications for Alzheimer’s or Dementia is not advised unless supervised by a medical professional. They use similar mechanisms of action and may interfere with the effect of the medication or cause excessive Acetylcholine levels in the brain. If you are looking for treatment options using supplements for Alzheimer’s disease or dementia please consult your doctor first before taking Huperzine A.

Huperzine A Dosage


Huperzine A is commonly sold in 50 mcg-100 mcg or 200 mcg tablets or capsules. These are dosages measured in micrograms not milligrams since this supplement is incredibly concentrated.

If you are already familiar with Nootropics, you may be aware of other powerful memory enhancers that may have similar or additional effects such as Aniracetam, Piracetam or Noopept and may be accustomed to much higher dosages than is required with Huperzine A.

This natural supplement is highly potent and doesn’t require a large dose for its effectiveness. Optimal typical dosages generally range between 50 mcg -200 mcg (micrograms) per day.

This can be divided into two administrations throughout the day as a memory-boosting supplement. However, most users find taking it in one single dose per day is sufficient.

It has an approximate half-life of 10-14 hours so many users will cycle this supplement. That means taking it a few times a week as needed or two weeks on and followed by a break to reduce the risks of any potential side effects from occurring. It seems to be water soluble, so you don’t need to take it with food.

For best results, you may want to consider stacking Huperzine A with Nootropics from the Racetam family which has been reported in many user logs to help amplify the effects.

Huperzine A Review


Huperzine A is an alkaloid compound derived from a plant called Huperzia Serrata (Chinese Club Moss) and is noted to be one of the best natural brain supplements for enhancing memory.

Studies have shown Huperzine A to be a safe and potent acetylcholinesterase inhibitor. This results in the increase of Acetylcholine in the brain, a chemical messenger that plays a critical role in the formation of memory, logical reasoning, learning and concentration capacity.

Users online have reported experiencing less brain fog or clearer thinking abilities, heightened creative thought, enhanced alertness and powerful effects on memory. This supplement may also contribute to protecting the brain for age-related damage.

If you are looking for a long-lasting supplement to help boost your memory, learning capacity and cognition, Huperzine A may be one you may want to consider using on its own or adding to a Nootropic stack.

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