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In a dream world, productivity would always come naturally. Realistically, however, this isn’t often the case. Life is full of distractions, and some days it can feel quite overwhelming. Now more than ever, distraction is easy to fall prey to. Social media and other platforms are just a small click away. Our phones ping every few minutes, and there always seems to be something else you need to do.
For many, improving focus just doesn’t seem possible, and they end up turning to energy drinks and other potentially harmful ways to regain focus and energy. When it comes to handling a lack of focus, there are many vitamins and supplements that can help get you back on track. There are many great choices, and some will work better for your needs than others. When it comes to maintaining your focus, supplements can help. When it comes to selecting a perfect supplement, you’ll want to make sure that it is not only effective but that it is also safe for use.
Why Is My Focus So Bad?
There are a lot of reasons why you may be finding it hard to focus. It seems like now more than ever, we all have more on our plate. We have our work commitments, family, friends, and with technology, an entire world of other distractions right at our fingertips. These difficulties can range from person to person and even simply from day to day. Life is about balance, both physically and mentally. When things are out of balance, they can start to impact your ability to get the most out of your day.
Some common concentration killers include:
- Seems obvious, but it can be hard to focus when you’re just not interested in a certain topic or activity. When you’re trying to work on a dull task, it is easy to fall into distractions.
- Mental distractions. At times, it feels like we simply can’t get our brains to shut off. We find ourselves thinking about other tasks or stresses, and it stops us from being able to focus on the task at hand.
- Electronic distractions. Technology can be a fantastic tool, but it is also a source of immense distractions. With emails, texts, social media, and push notifications, it’s rare to go long without a new notification popping up on your phone. It is easy to allow technology to start to control you and distract you from what you need to do.
- While it may seem that multitasking helps get more done, it is, in fact, often more time-consuming than anything else. Your brain must also make the switch that you are physically making, and that can end up wasting more time than if you had just focused on one task at a time.
- We all need sleep, and many of us do not get enough. When you don’t get enough rest, you feel cloudy, and it impacts your ability to maintain focus.
So, if you’re asking, what causes lack of focus and concentration, the answer isn’t always one clear solution. There are numerous factors in your life that can contribute to difficulty in focusing. With that in mind, this doesn’t mean that there isn’t help. In fact, there are numerous supplements that can help you focus. Supplements come in many varieties, and they produce different effects. What matters most is that you find a supplement that works best for you. By bringing balance back to your mind and body, you’ll once again be able to commit the focus needed to complete whatever task it is you have at hand.
Supplements to Improve Focus
As previously mentioned, there are many supplements to choose from when it comes to improving your focus. What matters most is finding something that works for your specific needs. These supplements are commonly referred to as Nootropics.
These nootropics are natural supplements or drugs that have a beneficial effect on the brain’s function. These supplements range from naturally created to synthetic ones. Some may come in a pill form or be utilized as drops and, in some instances, even topical creams. When it comes to selecting a supplement for you, what matters most is that it is both effective and safe.
What Vitamins Help You Focus?
When it comes to focus, there are tons of vitamins and supplements to choose from. Your focus needs may range depending on your specific concerns.
Some of the top choices include:
- Fish oil. Fish oil is rich in docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosatetraenoic acid (EPA). These are two types of Omega-3 fatty acids. These fatty acids are linked to many health benefits, such as improved brain health. DHA-specific supplements have been linked with improved thinking skills, memory, and reaction time. It has also been shown to reduce the decline of brain function associated with aging.
- Ginkgo Biloba. This herbal supplement is growing as a popular choice. The supplement helps to increase the blood flow to the brain, and it helps to improve brain functions such as focus and memory.
- L-Theanine. This supplement is great for those who aren’t fans of the jitters that sometimes come with caffeine. This supplement reduces the jumpy side effects and helps you to home in on your focus.
- Neutein supplements. Neutein includes all-natural, plant-based ingredients that help to improve focus after two hours. When taken regularly, it can improve and sustain focus.
- Vitamin D3 and B vitamins. D3 helps to boost your concentration levels. It’s key for healthy nerve function and overall functioning of your body and maintenance. B vitamins, in general, are well known for improving energy, focus, and alertness. B vitamins are essentially involved in all sorts of bodily processes, and proper levels of B vitamins can provide more energy, more resilience, and better cognitive capabilities.
- This is technically a nutrient and not a vitamin, but it is water-soluble and is related to other vitamins such as folate and the B vitamin family. It is great for maintaining the health of your overall memory and preventing its decline. It supports the functioning of acetylcholine, which is a neurotransmitter that is linked to memory, mood, muscle control, and other brain and nervous functions.
What Is the Best Supplement for Energy and Focus?
When it comes to determining the best supplement for energy and focus, this can truly vary depending on the individual. There are many great supplements out there, and some may work better than others for you. Some of the most popular supplements for energy and focus include:
- This one may seem obvious since many people feel that their day can’t truly start until they’ve had their cup of coffee. Caffeine is a natural stimulant that is found in tea, coffee, and dark chocolate. It stimulates the brain and the central nervous system, which makes you less tired and more alert. The trouble with caffeine is that too much of it can be counterproductive and has been linked to side effects such as anxiety, nausea, and trouble sleeping.
- Vitamin B12. This is an important vitamin that your body needs to help your brain, nervous system, and blood function at their best. Many people find themselves deficient in B12, and it can impact all areas of their life, including their ability to focus and the amount of energy they are able to dedicate to a certain task. Low B12 levels are related to lower learning abilities.
- Panax Ginseng. This is an effective supplement when it comes to improving concentration levels. This supplement helps to sharpen memory, mental focus, and overall well-being.
- Resveratrol. This is an antioxidant that is found naturally in many fruits that have purple and red coloring, such as raspberries, grapes, and blueberries. These antioxidants can help to slow any deterioration in the hippocampus.
What Is the Best Memory Booster?
When it comes to boosting memory, there are many great supplement choices available. What ultimately matters is looking for specific key ingredients that any reliable supplement should have. Keep in mind these supplements can boost your cognitive abilities, so you’ll want to check the label to make sure your supplement includes some of these ingredients:
- Bacopa Monnieri. This ingredient helps to enhance memory by boosting neuroprotectors that work to balance your neurotransmitters while also boosting cerebral blood flow.
- Ginkgo Biloba. For years, we’ve known that this ingredient helps to ensure the mind is healthy for years to come. It also helps to promote excellent memory recall.
- DMAE Bitartrate. This is a synthetic component that boosts the brain’s ability to learn and maintain memory.
- This is a popular ingredient that you’ll often find in many energy drinks. It is an amino acid that works to increase the electrical response of the brain’s nerves. It essentially gives you the feeling that you are firing on all cylinders.
- Acetyl L Carnitine. This ingredient can help to improve your memory and cognitive performance.
- L-Glutamine. This natural ingredient provides a boost for cognitive function, including memory and learning.
- Rhodiola Rosea. This ingredient has been historically used as a natural element for quite some time. It is a natural adaptogen that has been shown to increase your body’s resistance to stress, ease anxiety, improve mood, boost motivation, and decrease mental fatigue.
While there are plenty of natural options when it comes to supplements that boost your focus, there are also effective synthetic options available. When it comes to deciding between natural, synthetic, or both, what matters most is continuing to ensure that what you do select is safe as well as effective for you. Some of the top synthetic options include:
- Termed the “original smart pill,” this supplement has been shown to significantly improve both cognitive and working memory.
- This supplement is a popular choice because it has a stimulatory effect. It enters the bloodstream quickly and helps with both memory and learning. It has also recently been linked to increases in creativity.
- This supplement has been found to be effective in recovery from neurological trauma and improvement to long-term memory. It is also effective in improving attention span, memory and learning capacity, focus, sensory perfection, and logical thinking.
With any supplement that can impact the way your brain or body works, there are some that are more controversial than others. One supplement that is increasingly being pursued is Kratom. It is a natural source of energy and is full of alkaloids that interact with cell receptors and influence the sympathetic nervous system. This stimulates the activity of the brain and boosts mental capacity. In low doses, Kratom has been shown to increase mental alertness, focus, and energy. When taken in higher doses, it produces some of the same characteristics found in opioid drugs. There is a risk of addiction with this supplement, and depending on the amount of the dosage, it could potentially be dangerous.
Another controversial option, Adderall, is a combination of amphetamine and dextroamphetamine that impacts the central nervous system. This stimulates and improves focus as well as reduces impulsivity. For those who truly need it, Adderall can be a great tool in improving focus and helping those who deal with conditions such as ADHD. For those who don’t necessarily need to take this supplement, it can lead to health risks and addiction, and there may be no true benefit.
Both supplements have helped people increase their focus, but both should be approached cautiously. Adderall is a prescription drug and should only be used as prescribed. Kratom is growing in popularity, but there are still some concerns that shouldn’t be taken lightly. With the large variety of safe and effective supplements available, there is no reason to take any misguided risks.
What Nootropic Is Best for Me?
When it comes to improving your focus, there are numerous supplements out there, and sometimes it feels as though there are more coming out every day. Many people struggle with the ability to focus, which has led to a boom in this market. People of all ages struggle with focus and memory. This market is now approached by people of all ages, life stages, and lifestyles. It can feel overwhelming to select the right nootropic for you.
When it comes to selecting a nootropic, here are a few benefits that you should look for:
- Improves Memory
- Promotes focus and alertness
- Enhances learning
- Supports verbal recall
- Supports analytical thinking
- Boosts mental energy
Finding the right nootropic for you doesn’t have to be overwhelming. It may help to start by analyzing what leads to your lack of focus. Is it something you feel every day? Is it certain tasks or certain times of the day? For some, they may just need a little boost now and again to get through a tough day. For others, they may need more of a consistent boost to their cognitive alertness. Figuring out where you are with your focus issues can help to narrow down which supplement will work best for you.
When selecting your Nootropic supplements, it is important to make sure that you are aware of any health risks or concerns. Some supplements vary with doses, and you’ll want to make sure that you are following directions carefully. Start slow and give it time. Not all supplements have immediate effects. Some take time to experience the full benefits. If a label is unclear and you are unsure of the ingredients, steer clear. You will also want to be careful what you are paying for. Since many of these supplements impact your cognitive health, you want to avoid suspiciously cheap products. There are plenty of high-quality products available for a reasonable cost; you just need to be sure to do your research. Safety matters most.
Improve Your Focus Today
There are so many different distractions that people face every day. Some of these distractions are due to our personal habits, thoughts, and stress. Other distractions come from the world around us. Regardless of where these distractions stem from, we need a way to get back on track. Getting back on track doesn’t have to be difficult, it’s all about making a plan, creating a healthy routine and new habits.
If you want to improve your mental focus, finding the right supplement for you could make all the difference. There are numerous supplements out there, so it may take a little trial and error in order to find the right balance for you.
Just remember, what matters is finding something that works right for you and meets your specific needs. These supplements can help improve not only your ability to focus but your ability to feel better, sleep better, and have better memory and cognitive abilities. If you’re feeling less like yourself and that you just aren’t able to get enough done, a supplement routine can be exactly what you need to get back on track.
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Chief Operating Officer, The Compounding Pharmacy of America
Matthew Poteet, Pharm.D. graduated with Honors from Lee University with a Bachelors of Science in Biological Science. After his undergraduate training, he completed the Doctor of Pharmacy program at Mercer University Southern School of Pharmacy, graduating in 2004. Dr. Poteet has spent much of his pharmacy career on staff at two of the most prestigious academic teaching hospitals in the Southeast; Emory University in Atlanta and Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville. At these institutions he received extensive experience and training in sterile products compounding.
He returned home to East Tennessee in 2010, where he has held the position of Pharmacy Director at two sterile products pharmacies in Knoxville. Matthew lives in Knoxville with his wife, Chris. Dr. Poteet is Tennessee’s first Board Certified Anti-Aging Pharmacist by the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine.