Piracetam at 50: Still Making People Smarter Like A Boss

by Kurt Magnusson
Piracetam is the grand daddy of all nootropics and it will almost be impossible to have a meaningful discussion about smart drugs without talking about this brain supplement. Piracetam has been around for around 50 years and it still pretty much remains as one of the favorite noots among those seeking to pimp up their brain. What is even more impressive about Piracetam is that, while it was the first official nootropic and that far more potent smart drugs have been developed, it still remains as one of the most reliable brain supplements today when it comes to effectiveness and safety.

Piracetam comes from the racetam family of compounds, along with a whole bunch of other smart drugs such as Aniracetam, Pramiracetam, Oxiracetam, and Coluracetam. Aside from being effective cognitive enhancers, racetams are also useful for other medical applications particularly for the treatment and management of certain neurological conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, stroke, and trauma to the brain.


Piracetam was developed in 1964 by Romanian scientist Dr. Corneliu Giurgea in the laboratories of UCB, a multi-national pharmaceutical company based in Brussels, Belgium. The same pharmaceutical company launched Nootropil in 1970, the first ever regulated smart drug. Piracetam has since been prescribed to fight the symptoms related to cognitive degeneration brought about by ageing, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, alcoholism, smoking, stroke, and trauma to the brain.

It was also Dr. Corneliu Giurgea himself who came up the word “nootropic” to describe substances that affect the improvement of the cognitive processes of an individual. Dr. Giurgea laid down the standards on what true nootropics should be. According to Dr. Giurgea, in order for a compound to be considered as a nootropic it should be able to enhance learning and memory, make the user resistant to memory loss, it must have neuroprotective abilities, it must not have any psychotropic effects, and that it must not be toxic.


Even though this smart drug has been around for 50 years, it is still unclear how Piracetam does its magic on the brain. There are some theories though regarding the way this nootropic work. It has been theorized that the cognitive enhancing abilities of Piracetam is because of several reasons. One of the most popular theories is that regular use of Piracetam gradually restores the functions of the brain to its best state, where the signaling activity within it are at its most efficient. Another theory as to how Piracetam works is that it affects the AMPA glutamate receptors in the brain. This can likened to fine tuning the way the brain works.


Based on the standards for nootropics set by Dr. Giurgea, it would seem as if he had Piracetam in mind when he came up with it. Piracetam has been established as one of the best brain supplements around. The abilities of Piracetam as a smart drug are backed by a lot of research. Studies with repeated double-blind trials have long confirmed the ability of Piracetam to stop, treat, and even reverse declining brain functions due to a number of different causes. Its effectiveness is most observed in cases of senile dementia and of decreasing efficiency in mental processes due to ageing.

There are other nootropics and smart drugs that have since been developed that are way stronger than Piracetam. However, stronger does not necessarily mean better when it comes to brain supplements. The high dosage requirements for Piracetam supplementation even an advantage. This is because Piracetam dosages can be tweaked and adjusted down to the hundredths of milligrams to maximize its desired brain boosting effects. Smart drugs that are exponentially more potent on the other hand, can get really tricky even when it comes adjusting the dosages.

It should be noted that the effects of Piracetam and a number of other nootropics are mild and subtle. When supplementing with Piracetam and several other nootropics, one should not expect for the effects to hit just like a buzz that one gets from amphetamines, alcohol, or nicotine. While other more potent supplement may have noticeable effects, it may take about a day or two of Piracetam supplementation for its effects to kick in.

Once it does kick in it will be very subtle that you’ll go, “Hmmm, maybe I feel something, but I’m not sure.” You’ll start noticing that the flow of your thoughts are coming more smoothly, you’ll begin to communicate more fluidly or even use big words that you don’t normally use, you’ll be more confident, and realize you can easily dig up memories that you thought were long gone. Mental problem solving tasks will also be easier, your logical reasoning skills will better, and you’ll have sharper focus and concentration.

Here’s a quick look at the benefits of Piracetam supplementation.
  1. Improved memory formation, retention, and recall.
  2. Enhanced learning abilities.
  3. Better Logical reasoning.
  4. Increased focus, concentration, and attention.
  5. It has been known to delay, stop, and even reverse the decline of mental abilities.
  6. It has been known to protect the brain and memory from damage caused by aging, chemicals, and injury.
  7. It can speed up the recovery from stroke. 
  8. It can help recovering drug addicts and alcoholics cope much better with the effects of withdrawal.
Some users report of experiencing heightened sensory perception, improved creativity, consistently stable moods, enhanced mental energy, and being able to attain lucid dreaming state frequently when supplementing with Piracetam.


Piracetam is one of the safest racetam and nootropics around. This smart drug has been found to be safe even when ingested in extremely high doses. Despite being one of the safest brain supplements around, there are still a few safety considerations when supplementing with Piracetam. Such considerations include the following.
  1. Allergies – Although cases are extremely rare, you may still be allergic to Piracetam.
  2. Medical conditions – Piracetam is not recommended for individuals who have serious liver and kidney ailments. Even though Piracetam can help in speeding up the recovery process of anyone who suffered from brain injury of some sort, one should not take Piracetam if his injury involves brain hemorrhaging.
  3. Age – One should put off supplementation with Piracetam until after the age of 16 as it is believed that the neurons in the brain are still growing at this age and taking Piracetam may actually interfere with the process.


Piracetam should be the racetam of choice for those who are just starting out with nootropics. This smart drug however, should not considered be a brain supplement for noobs as it still the nootropic of choice even for experienced users of cognitive enhancers. Piracetam can be taken along with other racetams, or in a nootropic stack along with other smart drugs. Please check out our articles on nootropic stacks and tips on stacking.

If you want to purchase Piracetam or other nootropics, we strongly advise that you only buy them from established and reputable sellers and distributors. Our affiliates (check out the list below) are among the most trusted and most established in the industry. They are highly rated for their products and their services are very reliable. We highly recommend that you purchase your nootropics from them or from other reputable sources.

The recommended daily dose for Piracetam as a brain supplement is set at 1.2 to 5 grams per day. Some users recommend taking an attack dose of this nootropic to kick off your supplementation, which is double the required dosage. As with other nootropics and smart drugs, it is still best to first discuss your plans of taking this brain supplement with your doctor.

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