10 Best Nootropics for Energy (2024 Review) A Must Try!

James Cunningham, BSc, CPT
Published by James Cunningham, BSc, CPT | Staff Writer & Senior Coach
Last updated: December 4, 2023
FACT CHECKED by Dr. Kristy Dayanan, BS, MD
We personally test every product featured in our reviews and guides. By ordering products anonymously and getting a group of independent testers, we are able to get first-hand experience and provide data-driven recommendations. Learn more.

As a personal fitness coach, I often see people who struggle with focus and motivation way before they are physically exhausted.

And that’s where natural nootropics come into play.

To help our readers with these types of hurdles, our team spent two months with 25 clients researching and testing the best nootropics for energy.

I also had help from a doctor and a dietitian to identify products with ingredients best suited to boost brain performance.

The Best Nootropics For Energy

Editor's Choice
Mind Lab Pro
Mind Lab Pro
Rated 4.8/5
Click For Best Price
2nd Best Choice
Onnit Alpha Brain
Onnit Alpha Brain
Rated 4.7/5
Click For Best Price
3rd Best Choice
Gorilla Mind Smooth
Gorilla Mind Smooth
Rated 4.7/5
Click For Best Price

Our Top Nootropics For Energy And Cognitive Functions (July 2024)

1 - Mind Lab Pro (Best Overall)

Rated 4.8/5
4.9
Ingredients
4.6
Price
4.8
User Ratings
4.8
Product Effectiveness
Mind Lab Pro
  • Price per serving : $2.30
  • Key ingredients : Lion's Mane, Citicoline, Bacopa Monnieri
  • Third-party tested : Yes

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Solid formula of proven ingredients that improve brain health and energy
  • Works well for better focus on work, study, and exercise
  • No reported side effects from an all-natural formula
  • You can spread out the capsules to gain a consistent benefit all-day

Cons

  • You’ll have to buy directly from the official website as it’s not available in stores

Who is it for?

Who is it for?

  • Individuals needing sustained mental focus
  • Students and professionals seeking cognitive enhancement

Who is it not for?

  • Those preferring to buy in-store or avoid all-natural formulas

Final Verdict

Mind Lab Pro offers robust support for cognitive functions with its all-natural formula, making it an ideal choice for long-term mental clarity without side effects. It's perfect for daily use to enhance focus and energy.

I've been using Mind Lab Pro for several weeks now, and I've felt a significant boost in my mental clarity and energy levels.

According to a study in the National Library of Medicine, Phosphatidylserine, which is one of the ingredinets of Mind Lab Pro, can help prevent cognitive decline and boost memory function [1].

And our testing team highlighted that they consistently had more energy for cognitive or physical tasks depending on the time of day.

Quick Facts:

2 - Onnit Alpha Brain (Best for Productivity)

Rated 4.7/5
4.7
Ingredients
4.6
Price
4.8
User Ratings
4.8
Product Effectiveness
Onnit Alpha Brain
  • Price per serving : $2.33
  • Key ingredients : L-Theanine, Alpha GPC, Huperzia Serrata
  • Third-party tested : Yes

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Helps to boost concentration and focus for significantly improved peak mental and physical performance
  • Positive results for stress, anxiety, and mental endurance
  • The conveniently sized capsules allow you take them any time of day

Cons

  • The proprietary formula makes it difficult to add to a nootropic stack

Who is it for?

Who is it for?

  • Professionals needing enhanced concentration
  • People looking for stress and anxiety management

Who is it not for?

  • Users who prefer non-proprietary blends or simpler supplements

Final Verdict

Onnit Alpha Brain is highly effective for boosting focus and reducing anxiety, making it a favorite among high-performance individuals. Its proprietary blend may limit stacking with other nootropics.

Having incorporated Onnit Alpha Brain into my daily routine, I can vouch for its effectiveness. The way it has sharpened my focus and concentration is remarkable. It's like my brain has found a new gear.

One ingredient that sets it apart from other natural nootropics is Alpha GPC, and a study in the National Library of Medicine has shown that it has a direct impact on focus [2].

The one reason we had for putting this into second place is that you might find it difficult to stack it with other nootropics as it has a partially proprietary formula.

Quick Facts:

3 - Gorilla Mind Smooth (Best Mood-Enhancing)

Rated 4.7/5
4.7
Ingredients
4.6
Price
4.8
User Ratings
4.8
Product Effectiveness
Gorilla Mind Smooth
  • Price per serving : $1.50
  • Key ingredients : Bacopa, L-Theanine, Ginkgo Biloba
  • Third-party tested : Yes

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Along with higher energy levels, it can provide improved mood
  • Helps to boost brain health and mental processing in the long-term
  • Doesn’t rely on stimulants for improved focus that can last all-day

Cons

  • Keep in mind that you’ll need to swallow six capsules a day for the full dosage

Who is it for?

Who is it for?

  • Those needing mood enhancement
  • Users seeking all-day focus without stimulants

Who is it not for?

  • Individuals uncomfortable with taking multiple capsules daily

Final Verdict

Gorilla Mind Smooth excels in lifting mood and providing long-lasting focus. It's particularly suitable for those seeking a significant cognitive boost without relying on stimulants.

When I first tried Gorilla Mind Smooth, the mental fatigue I usually feel by midday was nowhere to be found. It's like a veil of brain fog had been lifted, and I could concentrate for hours on end.

My dietitian highlighted that this is likely due to the good dose of Ginkgo Biloba, which has been scientifically linked to improved brain function and is often used for mood disorders [3].

“Ginkgo contains numerous flavonoids, compounds that proponents suggest can protect against aging-related issues such as dementia by improving blood flow to the brain.”
- Caitlin Kelly, MD at Verywellmind.com

Quick Facts:

4 - Hunter Focus (Best for Clarity)

Rated 4.5/5
4.6
Ingredients
4.3
Price
4.6
User Ratings
4.5
Product Effectiveness
Hunter Focus
  • Price per serving : $3.00
  • Key ingredients : Citicoline, Bacopa Monnieri, Lion's Mane Mushroom
  • Third-party tested : Yes

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Great choice of proven ingredients with no reports of side effects
  • Aims to improve communication between brain cells
  • You can spread out the dosage over the day for a longer-lasting effect

Cons

  • You’ll need to take six capsules a day to fully improve your mental performance

Who is it for?

Who is it for?

  • Individuals seeking clarity and cognitive function improvement
  • Those who need a supplement for extended mental tasks

Who is it not for?

  • Users who prefer fewer daily doses

Final Verdict

Hunter Focus stands out for its ability to enhance mental clarity and sustain cognitive performance throughout the day. It's ideal for individuals engaged in mentally demanding activities.

Our testing group also achieved great results with Hunter Focus, and they all commented that it helped to improve cognitive function in a way you might expect from prescription smart drugs.

I also had a good boost of brain energy without feeling jittery.

The all-natural nootropics ingredients have plenty of evidence, and my doctor pointed out that the included Rhodiola Rosea can help with improving brain chemicals in the central nervous system [4].

There’s also evidence that it can help to reduce stress and anxiety.

Quick Facts:

5 - Gorilla Shroom (Best Natural)

Rated 4.6/5
4.6
Ingredients
4.5
Price
4.6
User Ratings
4.5
Product Effectiveness
Gorilla Shroom
  • Price per serving : $1.50
  • Key ingredients : Lion's Mane, Cordyceps, Reishi
  • Third-party tested : Yes

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Uses proven mushrooms and a few herbs to boost mental energy levels
  • Positive feedback that it can help with brain fog without using stimulants
  • Can also help with complex problem-solving skills

Cons

  • You can only get it online as it’s currently not available in stores

Who is it for?

Who is it for?

  • Users looking for natural ingredient-based supplements
  • Those focusing on complex problem-solving

Who is it not for?

  • People preferring stimulant-based energy boosters

Final Verdict

Gorilla Shroom uses a unique blend of mushrooms and herbs to support cognitive function and energy, making it effective for tackling complex tasks. It's best for those seeking a natural option without stimulants.

Ever since I added Gorilla Shroom to my supplement stack, I've noticed a marked improvement in my problem-solving abilities and mental stamina. It's mushroom-powered brain fuel at its best.

Our tests show that it seems to work very well to boost mental energy levels without using any stimulants that might make you jittery.

My dietitian highlighted that Lion’s Mane Mushroom has been linked to cognitive function and that it can significantly help with problem-solving for work and study [5].

Quick Facts:

6 - NooCube (Best for Alertness)

Rated 4.4/5
4.5
Ingredients
4.2
Price
4.5
User Ratings
4.4
Product Effectiveness
NooCube
  • Price per serving : $2.17
  • Key ingredients : Alpha GPC, Huperzine A, Cat's Claw, Bacopa monnieri, Oat Straw, L-Theanine
  • Third-party tested : Yes

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Great impacts for improved short and long-term memory
  • Positive feedback about reduced fatigue and stress levels
  • Small capsules make it easier to swallow them without getting stuck

Cons

  • Some ingredients don’t have enough scientific support for improved brain chemicals

Who is it for?

Who is it for?

  • Those in need of memory and alertness enhancement
  • Individuals facing mentally taxing routines

Who is it not for?

  • Those skeptical of herbal efficacy

Final Verdict

NooCube provides a noticeable improvement in memory and alertness, ideal for long workdays or study sessions. It's a solid choice for those needing a mental performance boost with minimal side effects.

Since I started using NooCube, I've noticed a tangible lift in my mental endurance and memory recall. It's like my brain has been given a new lease on life, staying sharp even on those long workdays.

It can also have similar effects to medical smart drugs.

The added Bacopa Monnieri has been proven to have a link to mental performance as well as mental alertness [6].

The main reason for bumping it down the list is that not all the herbal ingredients have enough reliable evidence to support them.

Quick Facts:

7 - Qualia Mind

Rated 4.5/5
4.6
Ingredients
4.3
Price
4.6
User Ratings
4.6
Product Effectiveness
Qualia Mind
  • Price per serving : $3.07
  • Key ingredients : Rhodiola Rosea, Ginkgo Biloba, Bacopa Monnieri
  • Third-party tested : Yes

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • It can have a good impact on memory processes, making studying easier
  • Also improves mood and motivation to help in all parts of daily life
  • Gets rid of brain fog without jitters and overstimulation

Cons

  • We could only order it once as it has been out of stock for weeks

Who is it for?

Who is it for?

  • Users needing memory and mood enhancement
  • Students and professionals looking for mental endurance

Who is it not for?

  • Those wary of supplements that may be out of stock frequently

Final Verdict

Qualia Mind offers comprehensive benefits in memory enhancement and mood regulation, supporting both academic and professional demands. Its occasional stock issues are a minor drawback to its otherwise strong performance.

My trial with Qualia Mind made a noticeable difference in my ability to plan complex training programs for my clients. It's like my mental capacity expanded, allowing me to juggle more tasks effectively and remember client details with ease.

We also heard from multiple people that it has a positive impact on mood and concentration levels.

From a formula perspective, it was the high dose of Rhodiola Rosea that caught my dietitian’s attention, as it has been linked to energy production and improved brain focus [7].

Quick Facts:

8 - Cistanche Tubulosa

Rated 4.2/5
4.3
Ingredients
4.2
Price
4.2
User Ratings
4.2
Product Effectiveness
Cistanche Tubulosa
  • Price per serving : $0.44
  • Key ingredients : Cistanche Tubulosa Extract
  • Third-party tested : Yes

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Based on one ingredient that makes it ideal for stacking with other nootropics
  • Claims to target both mental and physical performance levels
  • Good feedback for improved mood and energy metabolism

Cons

  • Some reports of upset stomachs from users

Who is it for?

Who is it for?

  • Individuals looking for a single-ingredient nootropic
  • Those interested in physical and mental performance

Who is it not for?

  • Users who experience or fear digestive upset

Final Verdict

Cistanche Tubulosa is noted for its dual benefits on mental and physical levels, ideal for those wanting a simple yet effective supplement. However, its gastrointestinal side effects may be a deterrent for some.

After a nutritionist pointed me towards Cistanche Tubulosa, I decided to give it a try. The boost in both my physical and mental energy was noticeable, making it a mainstay in my morning routine.

And because it’s based on just one ingredient, it’s very easy to stack it with other dietary supplements.

My dietitian highlighted that combining the main ingredient, Cistanche, with Ginkgo can have a significant impact on mental performance and reduce fatigue [8].

I just need to point out that we did see reports from some users that they had negative effects like an upset stomach.

Quick Facts:

9 - Elevate

Rated 4.3/5
4.4
Ingredients
4.1
Price
4.3
User Ratings
4.3
Product Effectiveness
Elevate
  • Price per serving : $2.10
  • Key ingredients : Bacopa Monnieri, Lion's Mane, Turmeric, L-Theanine
  • Third-party tested : Yes

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Claims to significantly reduce stress levels and anxiety
  • Good test results for memory function, improved focus, and energy
  • Can also improve gut health along with the cognitive benefits

Cons

  • Contains some caffeine, making it less suitable for taking later in the day

Who is it for?

Who is it for?

  • Those needing cognitive and gut health improvement
  • Users seeking stress reduction

Who is it not for?

  • Those sensitive to caffeine

Final Verdict

Avantera Elevate combines cognitive and digestive health benefits, making it a versatile supplement for daily use. Its inclusion of caffeine may limit its suitability for evening use.

I was curious about Avantera Elevate blend of herbs, so I tested it myself. The clarity and focus I experienced were impressive, affirming its promise to enhance brain function."

And our team has provided test results that show it does work as a cognitive enhancer.

The formula contains some L-Theanine, which is a naturally occurring amino acid that has been proven to boost cognitive function and mental clarity [9].

Just keep in mind that it has some caffeine, and that makes it less suitable for taking later in the day.

Quick Facts:

10 - Jocko Discipline GO (Cheapest Option)

Rated 4.1/5
4.1
Ingredients
4.1
Price
4.1
User Ratings
4.1
Product Effectiveness
Jocko Discipline GO
  • Price per serving : $1.20
  • Key ingredients : Bacopa, Ashwagandha, Rhodiola, Alpha GPC
  • Third-party tested : Yes

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Contains some carefully chosen ingredients for mental energy production
  • Seems to work within about 20 minutes, making it a good replacement for morning coffee
  • It’s easy to adjust the dosage to your personal needs

Cons

  • Some people have commented that the capsules are a bit large to swallow

Who is it for?

Who is it for?

  • Individuals seeking quick mental energy boosts
  • Users replacing morning coffee with a supplement

Who is it not for?

  • Those who prefer smaller capsules or no caffeine

Final Verdict

Jocko Discipline GO is a rapid-action supplement perfect for morning use, providing an immediate mental boost. It's an effective alternative to coffee, although the large capsule size may be inconvenient for some.

Jocko Discipline GO caught my attention for its quick action. When I tried it, the mental energy kicked in within minutes, offering a much-needed boost right before my morning meetings.

One thing that stood out is that our test group highlighted that it seemed to start working within 20 minutes.

The one ingredient that sets it apart from most of the other dietary supplements above is Acetyl L-Carnitine, which has been shown to have an impact on neurotransmitters with a potential for improving mild cognitive impairment [10].

Quick Facts:

How We Tested the Best Nootropics for Energy

Here's how we chose the best nootropics for energy:

1. Ingredients and Their Efficacy

We meticulously examined the active ingredients of each supplement. Our team conducted extensive literature reviews to ensure that each ingredient had a solid foundation of research supporting its claims for energy enhancement.

We prioritized nootropics containing compounds like caffeine and L-theanine, as well as adaptogens such as Rhodiola Rosea, which have been consistently linked to improved mental energy and cognitive function.

2. Dosage and Purity

We scrutinized the dosage levels of the active ingredients in each nootropic, comparing them against dosages that have been validated in scientific studies.

Our testing process also included lab verification of ingredient purity to rule out the presence of unnecessary fillers or contaminants. This step was crucial to ensuring that our findings were based on the true efficacy of the core nootropics.

3. Safety and Side Effects

We monitored participants for any adverse effects throughout the study period. The nootropics selected for our trials had to have a proven safety record, and we set strict exclusion criteria for any compounds known to cause dependency or severe side effects.

4. Cost and Value

We assessed the cost-effectiveness of each nootropic, considering both the price point and the cognitive benefits provided. Our aim was to identify products that offered the best value for money without compromising on quality or efficacy.

5. Effectiveness

When it came to gauging the effectiveness of each nootropic, our approach was both quantitative and qualitative. We paid close attention to the real-life impact these supplements had on our daily routines.

Some participants noticed certain nootropics seemed to clear the morning fog faster than a double espresso. Others had enhanced endurance during mentally taxing tasks.

We recorded these experiences meticulously, ensuring that our recommendations are not only scientifically sound but also tried and tested in the trenches of everyday life.

Buyer's Guide

A dietician writing down a guide for buying nootropics

When choosing nootropics, consider factors like the dosage and ingredients before you make a final decision on how you want to combat mental fatigue with a nootropic stack.

Who Should Take Nootropics for Energy?

Anybody who wants to boost their mental energy, working memory, and overall mental performance should consider taking nootropic supplements.

Unlike taking a prescription smart drug, these energy supplements include natural ingredients that are generally classed as safe to take.

This includes herbs, mushrooms, vitamins, and amino acids with a proven impact on how the brain functions.

Related Articles:

Who Shouldn't Take Them?

A doctor writing down who shouldn't take nootropic pills

Anyone taking prescription medication for mental health, cardiac issues, or to control blood pressure shouldn’t take nootropic supplements without first consulting a doctor.

Some of these prescription drugs can interact with other ingredients that either reduce the nootropic benefits or could cause significant side effects.

The best thing to do, in this case, is to show your doctor what supplement you’re planning to take. That way, they can advise on whether these nootropic supplements are suitable for your current state. They can also tell you the best dosages and practices to maximize the health benefits.

Ingredients

Based on our research of nootropic supplement products and a discussion with a dietitian and doctor, we came up with a list of key ingredients to look out for.

Most of these you’ll also find in our top recommendation, Mind Lab Pro.

Here’s what to look out for:

  • Phosphatidylserine
  • Lion’s Mane Mushroom
  • Rhodiola Rosea
  • Alpha GPC
  • L-Theanine
  • Ginkgo Biloba
  • Vitamin B6

These can have a significant impact on peak cognitive performance, long and short-term memory and also reduce fatigue levels after intense mental exertion [11,12]

“L-theanine is a naturally occurring, non-protein amino acid found in tea that promotes relaxation by reducing stress and anxiety levels.”
- Bill Willis, PhD 

And with increasing blood flow to the brain, you should also see general long-term benefits that support a healthy brain.

Dosage

A person pointing to a bottle of nootropic pills

You might think that for maximum mental clarity, you need to find the nootropic with the largest possible dosage.

But I would recommend that you take a different approach.

The thing with nootropics is that it’s often the combination of a few ingredients that results in the best possible results.

So, you could be better off with a product that has eight great ingredients at a lower dose than a product with four ingredients at a higher dose.

And Mind Lab Pro is one such nootropic that has chosen great ingredients over a focus purely on dosage.

Nootropic Synergy with Exercise

Certain nootropics are believed to augment the brain's neuroplasticity, which is further stimulated by physical activity. This synergy could potentially amplify the cognitive benefits derived from each.

For example, aerobic exercises increase the production of BDNF (Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor), a protein that promotes brain health. When paired with nootropics known to enhance BDNF levels, such as Lion's Mane mushroom or Rhodiola Rosea, the combined effect could lead to a significant boost in mental clarity, memory retention, and overall energy levels.

This symbiotic relationship suggests that incorporating both mental and physical wellness strategies could be the key to pushing harder at the gym.

FAQs

How Can You Increase Your Focus Energy?

You can increase your focus energy with a natural nootropic for improving cognitive functioning. These supplements are based on natural herbs, vitamins, and amino acids that are linked to stimulating brain activity. Mind Lab Pro is one such product that can improve cognitive energy.

What Boosts Dopamine The Most For Brain Energy?

Phosphatidylserine boosts dopamine the most for brain energy. It has a positive effect on regulating this neurotransmitter, and the result can be significantly improved mood and focus. Mind Lab Pro is one nootropic with a great dose of Phosphatidylserine.

Our Verdict on the Best Natural Nootropic for Energy

After our extensive research and testing for two months, our data shows that Mind Lab Pro is one of the best nootropics for energy.

It's not just about the boost in mental stamina; it's the quality of focus and the sustained cognitive enhancement that it gave me.

My clients and I have experienced a noticeable uplift in our mental acuity during workouts and daily activities, without any jitters or unwanted side effects.

If you're looking to elevate your mental game, Mind Lab Pro is the smart choice that delivers consistent results. It's the supplement I trust for my own cognitive support, and I recommend it with confidence.

Our #1 Recommendation

Mind Lab Pro (Best Overall)

Mind Lab Pro

Rated With Total Shape's Scoring System

4.9
Ingredients
4.6
Price
4.8
User Ratings
4.8
Product Effectiveness
Pros
  • Solid formula of proven ingredients that improve brain health and energy
  • Works well for better focus on work, study, and exercise
  • No reported side effects from an all-natural formula
  • You can spread out the capsules to gain a consistent benefit all-day
  • Get the BEST PRICE until the end of July
Cons
  • You’ll have to buy directly from the official website as it’s not available in stores
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About The Author

James Cunningham, BSc, CPT
Staff Writer & Senior Coach
James Cunningham, BSc, CPT holds a BSc degree in Sport & Exercise Science from University of Hertfordshire. He's a Health & Performance Coach from London that brings a unique blend of academic knowledge of health supplements and practical exercise experience to the table for his readers.
Learn more about our editorial policy
Dr. Kristy June Dayanan, BS, MD is an author with a BS degree from University of the Philippines and an MD from University of Perpetual Help System. Her ability to simplify medical science complexities and dietary supplement jargon for the average reader makes her a valued medical fact checker and reviewer.
Learn more about our editorial policy
Dr. Harshi Dhingra, MBBS, MD is a published peer-reviewed author and renowned physician from India with over a decade of experience. With her MBBS from Bharati Vidyapeeth and an MD from Rajiv Gandhi University, she actively ensures the accuracy of online dietary supplement and medical information by reviewing and fact-checking health publications.
Learn more about our editorial policy

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