Phosphatidylserine has gained a lot of interest as one of the most effective cortisol (stress hormone) blockers available that can lead to improvements in memory, cognitive functions and symptoms of ADHD, an overall supplement for brain support.
What is Phosphatidylserine ?
Phosphatidylserine is a chemical that is minimally produced in our body and comes mostly from food sources. It is used to maintain the function of every single cell in both the body and especially in the brain.
It is found largely in our fat cells and more than half of that total amount is found in the cell membranes of the neurons, where it is used to protect the cells and transmit messages.
Changes in the amount of nutrients in our food sources, elevated levels of stress and extreme exercising may be the potential cause of heightened cortisol levels (a stress hormone) that results in the depletion of Phosphatidylserine in the body and the brain.
This potential brain food is believed to play a key role in the ability to think clearly and improve many different cognitive functions. It also may even reduce stress and improve athletic performance.
This supplement has only been available throughout North America since the 1990’s. It was originally obtained from cow brains but is currently only sourced from soy.
Benefits of Phosphatidylserine
Phosphatidylserine is touted as a natural remedy to improve symptoms of ADHD, anxiety, stress, sleeping issues, athletic performance, mental function and depression.
The brain needs nutritional support to help brain cells communicate more rapidly. By increasing the flow to the membranes in the neurons, it may cognitively keep your mind sharp, focused and essentially give you a faster response time.
Phosphatidylserine is thought to enhance this communication which leads to improvements in thinking skills, problem solving, memory and attention span in both young and older people.
It is also thought to help slow down the process of an aging brain by increasing the fluidity of cell membranes to the neurons. This process may not only speed up communication but may have neuroprotective properties, repairing damaged neurons caused by aging. This supplement may be beneficial for improving mental function and speed of memory in older people.
Also, some users indicate that Phosphatidylserine gives them more mental energy, concentration capacity is enhanced and focus abilities become easier.
This process may also be beneficial for people who have suffered from a stroke, head trauma or substance abuse as a potentially effective method for cell repair. More research needs to be done for the effectiveness of this supplement for this use.
Phosphatidylserine is also used as an effective treatment for bipolar disorders, ADD and ADHD. There seems to be evidence that it can reduce anxiety and stress levels in people suffering from these health conditions.
Why Take Phophatidylserine? It promotes;
- Healthy neuron and brain support
- Improved thinking skills
- Improvements in memory recall
Phosphatidylserine is able to cross the blood-brain barrier and is noted to enable the brain to metabolize glucose more efficiently, which is also known as a “blood sugar” and our primary energy source. Glucose is needed for brain fuel and thinking speed.
It is also thought to restore the supply of a major neurotransmitter called Acetylcholine. This is a chemical messenger, serving several brain regions that is required for memory, attention and motivation.
There is some evidence that suggests Phosphatidylserine may also increase the level of dopamine in the brain. This is neurotransmitter responsible for our mood and mental well being.
Proper dopamine levels are especially imperative to reduce stress and regulate emotional responses. It is known to control the pleasure center of the brain and leads to more motivation and a better mood. It is also associated with memory and problem solving capabilities.
Safety of Phosphatidylserine
Most Phosphatidylserine supplements are made from soy and come in powder or capsules. Due to concerns of pathogens, bovine based forms are no longer widely available.
There are a large number of studies on this supplement for it’s use and safety for up to six months. Toxicology tests and clinical studies on humans have shown it to be likely safe, effective and well tolerated.
Side effects are mild and rare but have been reported such as insomnia, stomach upset and constipation. Phosphatidylserine is not recommended for breast feeding or nursing women or people with scheduled surgeries within a 2 week period.
It is recommended to always stay within the lowest dose available when starting on any new Nootropic supplement. This helps you gauge your body’s effect and find what works best for you.
The recommended dosage is between 100mg-400mg per day in total. Phosphatidylserine taken at 300mg per day, divided up into two or three administered doses throughout the day may be the most optimal and common (100mg x3). It is probably best to start at 100mg and raise the dosage and time of day you are taking it as needed.
Phosphatidylserine is often used in combination with Ginkgo Biloba to enhance overall cognitive functions.
These are just guidelines. If you have any concerns, please consult your doctor first.
Phosphatidylserine is a supplement that enhances a chemical we produce in our body in small amounts. It functions to maintain the health of every cell and can eventually get depleted when cortisol (stress hormone) levels are too high. This can be caused by nutrition and high levels of stress.
Thought to provide nutritional support to brain cells and increase communication and flow to the membranes, it is believed to improve thinking skills, memory, mental energy, focus and concentration capacity.
Users indicate that it provides an overall feeling of well being, vastly improves concentration and memory and eliminates brain fog.
With studies suggesting it’s safety and tolerance, this supplement may be a consideration if you are looking to potentially improve thinking skills, memory recall and have a faster brain.