Nootropics have gained notoriety across campuses and workplaces in the UK. The term refers to substances with the potential to improve memory and enhance cognitive abilities, such as concentration. When we talk about ‘nootropics’, we’re referring to pharmaceutical drugs as well as food supplements and drinks.

The growing familiarity with nootropics among academic institutions may be attributed to increasing pressures on students and workers. Competition for graduate jobs, research funding and never-ending workloads are leading to an epidemic of stress and anxiety. As a result, the promise of productivity and motivation make nootropic an alluring antidote to a high-stress world.

Read more: The Difference Between Good And Bad Stress

Despite the popularity of pharmaceutical nootropics and the legitimate reasons for using them, drugs such as Modafinil and Adderall have long lists of side effects, including headaches, insomnia and the potential to worsen mental illnesses. Furthermore, buying such drugs without prescription means they may have been adulterated with dangerous additives. 

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For this reason, we recommend only trying natural ingredients – particularly those that have been clinically studied. As always, we advise consulting your doctor before taking a new supplement. Read below for our three best nootropic ingredients for students.


This herb, used in ancient Indian medicine, may have positive cognitive effects. Researchers have found that Ashwagandha may help lengthen attention span, shorten reaction time and improve executive function – all significant benefits for busy students.

Read more: 7 Top Tips To Naturally Boost Your Brain Health

Moreover, an eight-week-long placebo-controlled study showed participants enjoyed improved memory and increased information processing speed when taking 600mg of ashwagandha root extract each day.

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Fans of our Brain Health Goals, which contains 600mg of ashwagandha root extract per serving, note that they have felt more alert since taking the supplement.

Furthermore, Ashwagandha is a powerful adaptogen. This makes it a perfect ingredient if you’re looking for natural ways to reduce stress and anxiety. For example, a placebo-controlled study found that participants who took either 250 or 600 mg of ashwagandha root extract over two months reported feeling less stressed and enjoying better sleep quality. 

Blueberry and whole grape extract

Packed full of nutrients and antioxidants, blueberry extract may benefit cognitive function.

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One study using freeze-dried blueberry powder saw improvements in participants’ performance on tests, including task switching and verbal learning.

Vitis vinifera (common grape) has also been used in Ayurvedic medicine for its adaptogenic and nootropic qualities. Clinical research supports the cognitive benefit of Vitis vinifera in supplements.

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Our Brain Health Goals formulation uses french grape (Vitis vinifera L.) and wild blueberry (Vaccinium angustifolium A.) extracts to give a synergistic nootropic effect. In a double-blind, randomised clinical study, these extracts improved attention and cognitive performance among students in just 90 minutes. 


This mineral has significant roles throughout the body, including acting as the gatekeeper for the brain receptors essential for memory and learning.

Studies on rats found that adding magnesium to their food helped them learn better. Although more research is needed to establish the positive effect in humans, magnesium deficiency is already associated with adverse effects on human brains.

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Mental illnesses such as depression are known to have a devastating effect on student performance, so it’s essential to ensure your diet is rich in nutrients that can protect your mental health.

Being deficient in magnesium can reduce serotonin levels, leading some researchers to advise doctors to use magnesium supplements in depression prevention and treatment.

Read more: Supplements For Depression: Three Nutrients To Look For

A placebo-controlled randomised study of participants experiencing mild to moderate depression found that daily magnesium supplements effectively improved symptoms.

Magnesium deficiency is also associated with decreased sleep quality. Poor sleep is known to compromise learning and result in lower grades among students, so supplementing with magnesium may be a great place to start if you’re looking for natural ways to improve concentration and memory.

Our Brain Health Goals formulation uses marine magnesium for maximum bioavailability so that you can enjoy the benefits of magnesium to its full extent.

The takeaway

Along with these three key essential nootropics ingredients, we have included Vitamin B complex in Brain Health Goals to offer a holistic benefit to brain health. Deficiency in thiamine (B1) and riboflavin (B2), for example, is associated with fatigue and memory impairment, while folate (B9) deficiency may cause cognitive decline.

At Authentic Biotics, we promote health and wellbeing only through a natural route. We understand that students are seeking ways to improve brain function but want to do so safely. That’s why we recommend Brain Health Goals. This vegan supplement comprises a unique blend of vitamins and minerals from plant and marine water sources, herbs and superfoods to support cognitive function.

Medical disclaimer

You must not rely on the information on this blog as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or therapist. If you have any specific concerns about your mental or physical health, you should consult your doctor and you should not delay seeking medical advice, or treatment for your mental health, because of the information on this blog.