T Nation

Supplements for Focus

Can anyone out there recommend supplements that will help with focus and concentration? Other than Power Drive and Spike, is anything out there worthwhile?

Robert, I really like pregnenolone. I had to lower my initial dosage of 50mg to 25 because I was getting heart palpitations (a known problem if you take too high a dosage), but no caffeine jitters and all the “focus” and concentration a person could hope for.

I would recommend you do some research on it, though, because pregnenolone is a hormone. Pregnenolone is called the “mother hormone” or sometimes the “parent hormone.” But parentage and sexual identity aside, it is a hormone that provides noticable cognitive benefits. (grin)

Nice, thanks for the quick response.

Terry, while I have your attention, I wanted to take to HOT-ROX and SPIKE together. I read the warning but is that strictly so Biotest has no serious liabliity?

I would be doing this on my own free will and accord unless someone can tell me it’s a really bad idea.

Anyone think so?

Robert, baaaaaaaaaaaaaaad idea. I don’t think you’d be asking if you had actually tried SPIKE. It’s just a little bit too much of a good thing when you add the two.

Use the “SPIKE” of energy you get to do more physical activity, and you’ll have the best of both worlds.

You should be able to alternate, though. “Alternating” meaning take HOT-ROX one day and SPIKE another. Just not within the same day.

I know Tim said you could TRY it at half dosages each, but I’m willing to bet you a dime to a nickle that after enough people test it (and try pushing the upper limits and even the limits of what he recommends) he ends up saying:

Stimulant + Stimulant = Not Good

[quote]Robert Monti wrote:
Can anyone out there recommend supplements that will help with focus and concentration? Other than Power Drive and SPIKE, is anything out there worthwhile?[/quote]

Something cheap that helps increase my concentration is fish oil. I take two caps when I get up and two before bed, and I usally have a hard time getting to sleep as I catch myself daydreaming (or nightdreaming lol) about certain things but not realizing it for quite a while. Either I’m really weird or it works great. Take it for what it’s worth but I’d recommend taking them any way, if you’re not already. Tonight I hope to daydream about the Powerful Image :slight_smile: lol.
-DV

[quote]Tampa-Terry wrote:
Robert, I really like pregnenolone. I had to lower my initial dosage of 50mg to 25 because I was getting heart palpitations (a known problem if you take too high a dosage), but no caffeine jitters and all the “focus” and concentration a person could hope for.

I would recommend you do some research on it, though, because pregnenolone is a hormone. Pregnenolone is called the “mother hormone” or sometimes the “parent hormone.” But parentage and sexual identity aside, it is a hormone that provides noticable cognitive benefits. (grin)[/quote]

Tampa-Terry,

I did some research on Pregnenolone and found that it can increase levels of estrogen/testosterone. Do you have any idea if it raises both of them equally? Is there any chance that it would raise your estrogen levels over your testosterone levels? Just curious. Thanks.

Rim

Where’d you read your research that showed this?

Cheers

[quote]Riminator wrote:

I did some research on Pregnenolone and found that it can increase levels of estrogen/testosterone. Do you have any idea if it raises both of them equally? Is there any chance that it would raise your estrogen levels over your testosterone levels? Just curious. Thanks.

Rim[/quote]

David,

TT is almost always correct but I’m a bit concerned about this recommendation depending on Rinminator’s age. I would imagine that he is referring to the fact that preg can be converted to DHEA in the body (which can raise test/estrogen). If he is over 40 that is one thing, but if he is in his 20s…

Check out http://www.mercola.com/2000/aug/27/adrenals.htm and let me know what you think.

Berner wrote:
TT is almost always correct…

Nah, I’m as fallible as the next guy! (grin)

I’ll do some more research tomorrow.

[quote]David Barr wrote:
Where’d you read your research that showed this?

Cheers

Riminator wrote:

I did some research on Pregnenolone and found that it can increase levels of estrogen/testosterone. Do you have any idea if it raises both of them equally? Is there any chance that it would raise your estrogen levels over your testosterone levels? Just curious. Thanks.

Rim[/quote]

I got that info off of a warning on a Pregnenolone manufacturer’s listing:

http://store.yahoo.com/iherb/preg101.html

[quote]Berner wrote:
David,

TT is almost always correct but I’m a bit concerned about this recommendation depending on Rinminator’s age. I would imagine that he is referring to the fact that preg can be converted to DHEA in the body (which can raise test/estrogen). If he is over 40 that is one thing, but if he is in his 20s…[/quote]

You’re right, that is why I was asking! By the way, I’m 28. Maybe I’ll just stick with Power Drive?

Hey, Rim, I’m glad to see you’re doing your due dilligence and reading the product labels! (grin)

The product label in this case is just standard disclaimer type of stuff, sorta like, “Advice found on this web site does not constitute medical advice. Please check with your physician before taking …” It’s a disclaimer made without understanding how hormones are made. Endogenous (made within the body) pregnenolone is made from cholesterol inside of the adrenals (specifically, the adrenal cortex). When cholesterol enters the adrenals, there’s an enzyme there that converts it to pregnenolone. DHEA is also made primarily in the adrenals from pregnenolone. A second/different enzyme is responsible for its conversion.

So yes, DHEA is made from pregnenolone, which is why you see the words “may increase” or “could increase” used by manufacturers. However, the conversion of pregnenolone to DHEA doesn’t happen in the bloodstream. Unless all the supplemental pregnenolone you took made its way to the adrenal cortex (and it doesn’t), supplemental pregnenolone is not going to raise DHEA levels and all the hormones that derive from DHEA.

Let me cut & paste some data on the safety of pregnenolone:

Pregnenolone is amazingly safer than other steroids/hormones. Pregnenolone researchers working with both human and animal subjects since the 1940s have consistently commented on pregnenolone’s virtual absence of toxicity. For example, the classic review article on pregnenolone by Henderson and colleagues in 1950 states: “It [pregnenolone] has an extremely low order of toxicity; [it] has not shown any adverse effects on endocrine [hormone] physiology …”

Pregnenolone has been given orally to humans at doses as high as 500 mg/day for as long as 30 weeks without evidence of adverse effects. Mice given 5 grams (1/6 ounce) per kilogram (2.2 pounds) of body weight suffered no ill effects. This would be equivalent to a 154 pound (70 kilogram) human ingesting 350 grams (approximately 3/4 pound) per day! In a long-term study, mice that were given one gram pregnenolone per kilogram of body weight three times weekly for 50 doses suffered no toxic reactions – including no changes in the size and condition of offspring produced after the 50 doses.

In one human study, eight people received 50 to 150 milligrams per day by intramuscular injection for 75 days, with no reported side effects. Dr. Eugene Roberts gave 20 Alzheimer’s patients 525 mg/day for three months with no toxicity. During rheumatoid arthritis experiments with pregnenolone, Dr. H. Freeman and colleagues gave 500 mg pregnenolone/day for up to 30 weeks, with no toxicity. And Drs. Pincus and Hoagland, two of the pioneer researchers on pregnenolone use by humans in the 1940s, found no toxic reactions with pregnenolone used by hundreds of men and women at dosages of 100 mg/day for four months.

Okay, Berner, have I salvaged (or managed to hold on to) my reputation yet? (grin)

Repeating, pregnenolone is a wonderful brain supp. It’s a mood enhancer, a brain energizer, a memory enhancer. It clears out the brain fog faster than a speeding bullet. (grin)

On what Tampa-Terry wrote:

Thanks for the info. I just ordered some to try. Thanks!

Rim

I don’t know who this Terry guy is, but I don’t think he knows what he’s talking about. Kidding…

No my main concern wasn’t with TT, it was more with the evidence that our colleague found, indicating that preg can elevate T and E levels. I mean if the direct precursor does nothing for T, but elevates E, then there’s no way preg is going to elevate T (being so far upstream).

Oh, and for the record, TT is almost always right. :slight_smile:

Cheers

[quote]Berner wrote:
David,

TT is almost always correct but I’m a bit concerned about this recommendation depending on Rinminator’s age. I would imagine that he is referring to the fact that preg can be converted to DHEA in the body (which can raise test/estrogen). If he is over 40 that is one thing, but if he is in his 20s…[/quote]

Geez, I re-read my post before I sent it and I thought it was clear that “he” referred to Rinminator (oh well back to english composition 101):

TT is almost always correct but I’m a bit concerned about this recommendation depending on Rinminator’s age. I would imagine that he is referring to the fact that preg can be converted to DHEA in the body (which can raise test/estrogen). If he is over 40 that is one thing, but if he is in his 20s…

Geez, I re-read my post before I sent it and I thought it was clear that “he” referred to Rinminator (oh well, back to English composition 101):

Online communication is so much fun at times! (laughing)

I’m a bit concerned about this recommendation depending on Rinminator’s age. I would imagine that he is referring to the fact that preg can be converted to DHEA in the body (which can raise test/estrogen). If he is over 40 that is one thing, but if he is in his 20s…

Don’t worry, Berner. It’s not a cause for concern, even at 20. The hormonal conversions/increases you’re worried about won’t happen. Dig into the physiology a little deeper or try to find a clinical trial on PubMed that shows supplemental pregnenolone raises either hormone. You won’t find it. The key to this whole thing is that endogenous pregnenolone (made within the body) has a different affect on hormone levels than exogenous (supplemental; from outside the body) pregnenolone.

It’s one of the safer hormones out there. All sorts of benefits and very few downsides. The only downsides/negatives I’m aware of is that it can be too energizing if too much is taken, causing insomnia. The other negative is one I’ve experienced. If you take too much, you’ll end up with heart palpitations.

Oh, and re “my reputation,” I’ve never cared as much about my reputation as much as I do that CORRECT/FACTUAL/TRUE information is presented and mistakes corrected. If I’m wrong, I want to know it so that I don’t continue to give out bad advice.

That David Barr character keeps me honest. (grin)

I’m pretty sure I know the answer to this one but I’ll ask anyway :slight_smile: Would this be a product one could take to combat lethargy during a ph/aas cycle?

Very interesting information here. I could definitely use something to help me focus, and may give Pregnenolone a try.

I have a few questions…

Should it be cycled or can it be taken continuously?

Can it be stacked with Spike?

If not, which one would you recommend for better focus? Maybe Pregnenolone on weekends, when I have to study, and Spike on weekdays when I work out but don’t study too much?

What’s your favourite brand, and is it legal in Canada?

Any additional info/tips on Pregnenolone would be greatly appreciated.

The mechanism is interesting:

"Memory enhancement has been observed in aged animals when given pregnenolone or pregnenolone sulfate. Pregnenolone sulfate is both a gamma-aminobutyrate (GABA) antagonist and a positive allosteric modulator at the N-methyl-D-asparatate (NMDA) receptor and may reinforce neurotransmitter systems that may decline with age.

Pregnenolone sulfate was found to stimulate acetylcholine release in the adult rat hippocampus. Acetylcholine release may be due to pregnenolone sulfate’s negative modulation of the GABA (A) receptor complex and positive modulation of the NMDA receptor."

Thanks for looking a little deeper, Berner. That’s what I was trying to tell you. It’s pretty cool stuff. You just said it a lot more articulately and scientifically than I did, though. (grin)

Re the acetylcholine, I find I don’t drink very much coffee anymore. I just don’t need it or want it. Power Drive and pregnenolone have been meeting my cognitive/mental energy needs nicely for a while now. Come Monday, I’m going to be testing Spike out. (rubbing hands together vigorously in anticipating)

wideguy, yes, you can take it when you’re on. It shouldn’t interfere with anything else you’re doing hormonally.

Re the lethargy, it will help with the mental/cognitive aspects of things, but if the lethargy you’re experiencing is physical, it won’t help. It’s a very mental drug.

Re Spike + pregnenolone…

Spike + any other stimulant = baaaaaaaaaaad

lmjudek, no need to cycle it, but I don’t use it every day. Use it when you need it and skip it when you don’t. I’ll even take a second small dose in the afternoon to fight off the afternoon sleepies.

Re Spike vs. pregnenolone? Try both, but try them on different days and then use whicever one meets your needs. It’s always nice to have different tools in your toolbox.

Re brand, I have no particular loyalty to any of the manufacturers, but I do generally buy quality. It’s not an expensive supp at all.

Re legality in Canada, I don’t know one way or the other. Canada sure can be funny about some stuff. And then, too, it probably varies from province to province. I’d ask a healthfood store in your area.