Nootropics and alcohol

Nootropics are substances that are usually taken to increase cognitive performance so as to better achieve specific tasks.

Alcohol is consumed to dull the senses, increase confidence, and is part of the ‘ritual’ of many cultures around the world as a social lubricant.

Some say that nootropics and alcohol don’t combine well and some would say that the two have opposing effects. This is debatable and is entirely reliant on which nootropic you are combining it with.

Writers are known to use alcohol as a means to get out of a creative rut. However, alcohol generally decreases mental acuity, decelerates the thought process and makes it harder to stay focused.

Modafinil and alcohol

Modafinil is one of the most potent nootropics in use today, with some comparing it to the real-life Limitless pill. It acts by decreasing GABA levels and subtly increasing orexin, serotonin, dopamine, histamine and glutamate levels.

Modafinil and alcohol act in a contradicting way when it comes to GABA, making the combination a risky affair.

Side effects may be exacerbated and Modafinil’s focus-enhancing properties are significantly decreased. Drinking alcohol while on Modafinil is terrible for productivity and it’s almost foolish to spoil the Modafinil this way.

Still, people are using the two substances together…

What people enjoy most about this combination is the fact that getting drunk is far more difficult. Whether you’ve taken it 6 hours before starting drinking or immediately before, Modafinil adds a sober dimension to an otherwise mentally-dulled experience.

A word of caution, though: both substances produce dehydration, and the combination may result in serious thirst followed by headaches if not enough water is consumed. If consumed the next day after drinking, Modafinil has the potential of effectively curing a hangover and helping one be at full potential during a typical lazy Sunday afternoon.

Phenibut and alcohol

Phenibut is a broad action relaxation and sociability nootropic that enhances confidence and extroversion, whilst reducing the effects of anxiety and stress. Described as creating a feeling of calm without sedation, Phenibut is often used as a medium-duration sleep aid, social tool and mood brightener. On top of its desirable benefits to mood and extroversion, it provides moderate cognitive benefits, including enhanced concentration and recall.

Phenibut and alcohol are two substances that would go better apart than together. This combination is quite dangerous, as Phenibut may get metabolized faster on some days and lower on others, making it difficult to get the intended results.

Both substances increase GABA levels in the brain, and the two have a potentiating effect when it comes to the main inhibitory neurotransmitter in the brain. Still, if you’re going to drink a beer or two and take a low dose of Phenibut, there isn’t really any danger. When going out, however, the risk is amplified because the intoxication may lead one to forget about proper dosing.

Some truly horrific experiences of intense headaches, severe dehydration and general confusion have been reported by users who were irresponsible and have combined the two mismatched substances.

L-Theanine and alcohol

L-Theanine is an amino-acid that is found naturally in green tea. If you want to feel its full effects, L-theanine supplements are safe and effective. Low doses produce a state of mindful relaxation that favors focus and productivity, while higher doses can be sedating, though without impeding cognition.

L-Theanine consumed before drinking helps to lower social anxiety and increase clearheadedness, which will help you be more aware of the quantity of alcohol that you’re ingesting.

L-Theanine consumed after a night out drinking can effectively decrease brain fog and help you be at your best the following day.

People sometimes mix L-theanine with alcohol so as to minimize the effects of hangover the next day. L-Theanine also helps to reduce alcohol levels inside your body, which makes it harder for you to get drunk.

Tianeptine and alcohol

Tianeptine is a potent mood brightener and nootropic, celebrated for its effects on wellbeing and cognition, providing immediate and also long term benefits. Within an hour of use, it provides mental stability and clarity, functioning as a medium duration productivity tool. Additionally, its beneficial effects compound over extended use, resulting in a long-term effect which reduces feelings of stress, sadness and anxiety.

Tianeptine and alcohol taken together may cause intense sedation, especially if doses are improper. Furthermore, consuming alcohol when taking tianeptine may render its effects useless and cause any underlying anxiety or depression to manifest itself.

Noopept and alcohol

Noopept is a potent nootropic that improves cognitive ability, boosts motivation and productivity, and promotes the generation of new neurons. Its substantial benefits coupled with its lack of harmful side effects has established Noopept as one of the most popular and respected nootropic substances available.

Noopept is part of the racetam family of nootropics, which increase brain metabolism. Aside from potentiating the effects of alcohol, Noopept modifies the experience by increasing mental acuity and maintaining body control to normal levels.

Higher doses of Noopept will lead to the “drunken feeling” disappearing. Users have reported decreased desire to drink alcohol after taking Noopept. Last but not least, this nootropic has the potential to effectively eliminate hangovers.

Aniracetam and alcohol

One of the champions of the -racetam group, Aniracetam is a powerful cognitive performance enhancer. It creates a period of lucid, focussed mental clarity in which anxieties are reduced, memory is made precise, and thought is concentrated. This allows for greater problem solving capabilities, verbal fluency, and an enhanced attention span.

This increases the risk of drinking while experiencing the peak effects of Aniracetam. There are quite a lot of users warning against consuming alcohol while the effects of Aniracetam are fully felt. Others have stated that, even though the effects of alcohol are increased, the Aniracetam makes the experience cleaner and gives the user more control over the experience. As is the case with Noopept, Aniracetam makes the user less willing to binge-drink.

Adrafinil and alcohol

Adrafinil is a prodrug to Modafinil, meaning that the two smart drugs are basically one and the same when it comes to effects. The liver metabolizes Adrafinil into Modafinil. Combining Adrafinil and alcohol puts quite a lot of strain on the liver, which would make it unwise to let your liver handle both at the same time.

Piracetam and alcohol

The classic, original nootropic, Piracetam has a track record of safe, effective benefits to cognition and brain function. With over 40 years of peer-reviewed studies attesting to its capabilities, it is widely recognised as having broken new ground in cognitive enhancement.

Piracetam boasts a wide effect profile, providing benefits that vary across individuals. Its improvements to focus, memory and clarity of thought are often the most celebrated, ideal for essays and laborious tasks that require your unbroken concentration. With an effect duration of ~7 hours, it remains an excellent daily tool for bursts of productivity. Additionally, experimental findings have shown that Piracetam improves reading accuracy in dyslexics.

Alcohol decreases the amount of oxygen that gets in the brain while Piracetam has an opposite effect. Piracetam protects the brain against brain tissue damage when consuming alcohol, as well as when becoming addicted and facing withdrawal symptoms. Also, piracetam has been proven to reverse and prevent memory loss caused by alcohol abuse. Piracetam, as most other substances from this family, can decrease the intensity of hangovers.

Still, in spite of the benefits offered by piracetam after consuming alcohol, combining them is still a bad idea. Piracetam is safe to take with most other substances, and alcohol is one of the few things that is listed to interact badly. Piracetam intensifies the effects of alcohol intoxication. Tolerance to alcohol is significantly diminished, and one drink can feel like you’ve had two or three.

Phenylpiracetam and alcohol

Phenylpiracetam is an analog of piracetam that was developed in Russia with the aim of helping cosmonauts focus under stress. It’s considerably more stimulating than piracetam due to the added phenyl group, which makes it similar in structure and effects to other stimulants such as Ritalin or Adderall. Phenylpiracetam also exhibits anti-anxiety effects.

Phenylpiracetam and alcohol is considered to be a safe combination (if you don’t overdrink, obviously). Tolerance is diminished, though the experience is significantly altered. Users have reported feeling more centered and clearheaded. Sublingual administration is quite popular, though the taste can be quite nasty, which may lead to nausea.

Phenylpiracetam taken after consuming alcohol is great for productivity. This analog bears mostly the same neuroprotective and oxygen-increasing properties of piracetam.

Citicoline and alcohol

Citicoline is a choline supplement that helps the brain against memory loss and provides immediate effects on focus and learning.
Citicoline is safe to use together with alcohol as the two don’t alter each other’s reaction.


As you can see, using nootropics and alcohol is mostly a bad idea.

Aside from the fact that it defeats the purpose of taking nootropics in the first place, some dangers may arise as a consequence.

Racetams such as Noopept, phenylpiracetam and piracetam lower tolerance to alcohol, which may result in some seriously uncomfortable experiences.

Nootropics are at least mildly stimulating and they can prove highly beneficial the following day after consuming alcohol. Aside from curing a hangover and helping people be productive after a night of binge drinking, some nootropics can help minimize the damage caused by alcohol consumption, as well as a better way to deal with the crippling effects of alcohol withdrawal.

Remember to always consult your doctor, and nothing written in this article should be considered medical advice.