Is there really such a thing as natural Adderall? Can you buy Adderall alternatives legally over the counter? In our detailed article, we answer all of your questions and more! Please post any questions about natural Adderall alternatives in the comments at the end.
Adderall is without doubt one of the most widely-used cognitive enhancers in existence. Students in universities around the world use Adderall to supercharge their studying during finals, and Adderall use is reportedly rampant at the big banks. This study drug is particularly popular in the US, where it is most readily available.
One thing we must say about Adderall is that it definitely works. Anybody who has used Adderall will tell you that it does exactly what it says on the label – you really feel it working on your brain.
The main benefits people get from Adderall are:
- Heightened focus
- Increased alertness
- Reduced fatigue
- Faster learning capacity
- Reduced anxiety
However, the vast majority of people will never even consider using something like Adderall.
They’re right to be cautious; Adderall is an amphetamine compound. It is used to enhance cognitive function, sure, but it’s also used by boxers, sprinters, and other athletes to enhancer their performance. Adderall rapidly increases mental and physical energy, reduces fatigue, attenuates pain, and increases aggressive behavior. It is associated with a long list of side effects, some of them serious.
The long-term risks of Adderall use are not understood properly at all, but we can’t imagine that they’re very good.
This is exactly why so many people look for safe, natural Adderall alternatives.
We get dozens of people every single month asking us what is the best over-the-counter Adderall alternative. We often see posts on forums from people asking where they can get an “OTC Adderall replacement”, or what is the closest thing to Adderall over-the-counter.
Sometimes, we see people asking where they can get non-prescription Adderall, or where they can get Adderall legally.
Nootropics manufacturers haven’t helped the situation.
Some nootropics on the market in the US claim to be legal, OTC Adderall alternatives. According to some of the shadier brands out there, their nootropics are identical to Adderall, but in a more “natural” form.
This obviously isn’t true.
Is there an OTC Adderall?
The truth of the matter is that there is no such thing as “natural Adderall”.
No natural substance can mimic the effects of such a powerful mix of amphetamine salts.
In short, there is no such thing as a natural, OTC Adderal alternative.
But that doesn’t mean that there aren’t good alternatives to Adderall. There are plenty of nootropic substances and supplements on the market today which are safer, more reliable, and ultimately more effective than Adderall.
Stacks like Mind Lab Pro offer complete cognitive support in a safe, natural way. Other stacks, like Performance Lab Mind, can easily be stacked with caffeine to give you the ‘kick’ people look for from Adderall.
Then there are individual nootropics which act as safer, over-the-counter alternatives to Adderall.
Below is our list of the 7 best OTC Adderall alternatives on sale right now.
The 7 Best Adderall Alternatives 2019
Below is a list of the best natural, legal, OTC nootropics which mimic some of the effects of Adderall. None of these substances will replicate the effects of Adderall. They all have different benefits and limitations.
But if you stack several of these substances, then you can enjoy many of the beneficial effects of Adderall – increased focus, faster learning, etc – without any of the nasty side effects or health risks.
Citicoline is possibly our favorite nootropic. We can’t think of any substance we’d rather have in our daily cognitive enhancing stack. Citicoline is a cholinergic. This means it rapidly increases choline levels in the brain, which leads to increased production of both phosphatidylcholine and acetylcholine. Citicoline supplementation also provides uridine, which facilitates RNA production.
The end result is significantly increased focus, enhanced learning capacity, better working memory function, and even improved brain cell formation. These are the main benefits someone is looking for when using an Adderall alternative.
Useful for: Focus & learning
Like Citicoline, Alpha-GPC is a cholinergic. It too raises choline levels in the brain, which means more acetylcholine and phosphatidylcholine. And like Citicoline, Alpha-GPC supplementation has been shown in numerous clinical trials to improve multiple different facets of cognition, including concentration, information processing, reaction speeds, and memory function. This is why it is listed as one of the best Adderall alternatives on sale right now!
In our experience, Citicoline is more reliable than Alpha-GPC; more people seem to respond well to it. But Alpha-GPC is an excellent cholinergic nonetheless. If you’re looking to boost focus and stop procrastination, a large dose (~300mg) of Alpha-GPC might help.
Useful for: Working memory & attention
Caffeine + Theanine
We don’t need to tell you how caffeine might be seen as a legal OTC Adderall alternative. You’ve probably all felt the effects of caffeine yourself. It is an extremely powerful stimulant. It almost immediately heightens alertness, raises energy levels, and decreases the perception of fatigue. What some of you might not know is that caffeine actually improves cognitive performance too; studies have found that it improves scores on tests.
Theanine works side-by-side with caffeine. It heightens caffeine’s positive effects while suppressing the side effects. Taking the two simultaneously can heave you pepped up, hyper-focused, yet calm.
Useful for: Mental stamina
Huperzine A is a really interesting nootropic. It is not normally used as a natural substitute for Adderall, but not because it doesn’t work. In fact, Huperzine A probably mimics the effects of Adderall better than any other substance on this list.
Huperzine A inhibits acetylcholinesterase, which is the enzyme responsible for breaking down acetylcholine. Acetylcholine is the brain’s primary executive neurotransmitter. By inhibiting the enzyme which breaks down used acetylcholine between synapses, Huperzine A effectively causes a steady build up of acetylcholine in the brain. Studies have indeed shown this to be true; supplementing with Huperzine A leads to dramatically improved focus, attention, and learning capacity. Users report experiencing a tunnel-vision kind of focus while using high doses of Huperzine A, which is why we recommend it as a natural alternative to Adderall.
Useful for: Concentration
Rhodiola rosea is an anxiolytic. This is the name we give to substances which reduce anxiety. Rhodiola rosea has a long history of use as an anti-anxiety supplement. It has been used for centuries in traditional medicines across Europe and Asia. Today, it is found in several highly popular nootropic stacks.
Dozens of clinical trials have shown that rhodiola rosea supplementation quickly reduces stress and suppresses the physical symptoms of anxiety. On top of that, it actually improves cognitive performance in stressful situations. This means it delivers some of the same benefits as Adderall, albeit in a much subtler safer way!
Useful for: Reducing anxiety and promoting clear-headed focus
You will not find Gingko biloba listed on many lists of the best OTC Adderall alternatives. But in our opinion, Ginkgo biloba supplementation can absolutely deliver some of the same benefits as Adderall without posing any of the same health and safety risks.
Ginkgo biloba contains both terpenes and glycosides. These compounds increase blood viscosity and trigger vasodilation. Basically, they make your blood ‘runnier’ and your blood vessels wider. This increases blood flow in the brain. Better oxygen and nutrient delivery means better performing brain cells. People supplementing with Ginkgo biloba every day perform better in memory tests after as little as 2 weeks.
Useful for: Memory function and brain cell health
Maritime Pine Bark
Maritime pine bark is the most plentiful source of a class of flavonoids called proanthocyanidins. These same flavonoids are found in the likes of red wine and certain berries, but they are present in far higher concentrations in maritime pine bark. Proanthocyanins are extremely powerful antioxidants. While it is difficult to estimate the strength of these things accurately, some studies claim that proanthocyanins are 50x as powerful as Vitamin C at reducing oxidative damage.
One thing that’s special about maritime pine bark is that its antioxidants are particularly adept at crossing the blood brain barrier. On top of that, substances in maritime pine bark are known to promote blood flow in the brain. So if you are looking to protect your brain from potential damage – for example, while trying to mimic the effects of Adderall – then adding in some maritime pine bark is a good idea!
Useful for: Promoting brain cell health
What is the closest thing to Adderall available OTC?
The above substances are, in our opinion, the best natural OTC Adderall alternatives on the market right now. These substances are found in hundreds of brain supplements on sale today. The vast majority of these pre-made nootropics are – unfortunately – awful. But a small number are extremely effective.
As we said at the beginning of this article, there is no such thing as natural Adderall, over-the-counter Adderall, or an Adderall substitute.
Adderall is Adderall.
Natural substances are never going to replicate the effects of pharmaceutical-grade amphetamine salts.
But that is not to say that you aren’t better off using natural nootropics to attain better concentration and focus.
We believe that you should stay well away from substances like Adderall. The side effects, long-term health risks, and unpredictability make Adderall not worth it.
By contrast, natural nootropics can significantly improve focus, learning, memory function, and support brain health without causing any side effects whatsoever.
If you have a lot of studying to do, or you have some really important deadlines coming up at work, then it can be tempting to use Adderall. But we think that is a big mistake. Adderall comes with serious side effects, and it can make you behave in extremely unusual ways. It is an unpredictable brain drug which can easily backfire (the last thing you want to happen in an important presentation or a final exam).
The best natural nootropics are the ideal solution for students, gamers, analysts, programmers, business executives and athletes looking to gain a critical edge on the competition.
Nootropic supplements to use instead of Adderall
There are some good pre-made nootropic stacks capable of enhancing focus, improving working memory, and drastically increasing mental energy levels.
We’re not talking about the stacks sold as “OTC Adderall”.
Whenever you see a supplement claiming to be “legal Adderall” then you know it’s almost definitely a scam.
We’re talking about professional, premium-quality brain supplements designed to enhance several different aspects of cognitive function at the same time.
Our current top rated pre-made nootropic is Mind Lab Pro. It ramps up focus, improves memory, accelerates recall and reaction times, and suppresses anxiety.
If you don’t have the time nor the expertise to make your own nootropic stack, then opting for a professionally-made stack is probably a good way to go.
Adderall vs OTC Alternatives – Which should you use?
So, should you try to get a prescription for Adderall, or should you use natural Adderall alternatives available over the counter?
This is a very easy question to answer.
If you have been diagnosed with severe ADHD and your doctor – and actual MD – thinks you would benefit from Adderall, then you should follow their advice.
If that does not apply to you, then you shouldn’t use Adderall.
You should never use prescription drugs without a prescription. This is particularly true of drugs like Adderall, which contain amphetamines.
So if you are just looking for heightened focus, enhanced working memory function, and more mental energy, use natural Adderall replacements instead.
Is there a generic form of Adderall?
Adderall is actually a brand name given to a special blend of four amphetamine salts. The composition is 25% levoamphetamine salts and 75% dextroamphetamine salts.
In the United States, you can get generic Adderall. Both normal and fast-release generic formulations are available. However, the extended release formulation made by Mydayis is only available in its branded form.
Generic forms of Adderall can also be obtained in Canada, Australia, the EU, the UK, and elsewhere. However, it is far more common to see Adderall in other parts of the world. This is largely because consumers are more comfortable buying Adderall than levoamphetamine, even though they are the same thing!
Is Adderall safe?
No, Adderall is not safe.
It causes a wide range of side effects, including:
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss
- Stomach pain
- Chest pain
- High blood pressure
The long-term health risks of frequent Adderall use are not known. For obvious reasons, we don’t have any clinical trials looking at long-term effects of regular amphetamine consumption. But from what we can gather from amphetamine addicts, the long-term effects of Adderall are not great.
Is Adderall addictive?
Yes, Adderall is extremely addictive.
Adderall is a brand name for a mixture of amphetamine salts. Amphetamines are extremely addictive. Just because something is sold by drug companies and in pharmacies does not mean it isn’t addictive. Quite the opposite; you only need to look at the opioid crisis in the US to see what we mean.
The vast majority of people find Adderall addictive. Most people quickly build up a tolerance to Adderall – after 2-3 weeks, they find they need to use more to get the same ‘buzz’.
People also find that they begin to find it hard to function when not using Adderall, just like with every other amphetamine. The ‘low’ that follows an Adderall high can be debilitating. The Adderall “hangover” can cause symptoms of depression and anxiety, as well as a range of physical symptoms.
So, uses are often tempted to just keep taking Adderall to avoid these comedowns and hangovers.
Like all amphetamines, Adderall is addictive.
This is why we recommend using natural nootropics as Adderall alternatives. Natural brain supplements are generally not addictive and they do not usually cause side effects.
Can you get non-prescription Adderall?
No. Adderall is made up of amphetamine salts. To our knowledge, there is no way to legally obtain Adderall without a prescription. There is also no such thing as a non-prescription Adderall. There are natural Adderall replacements and alternatives, but they are not Adderall.
Where is Adderall legal?
The legality of Adderall varies around the world.
In the vast majority of jurisdictions, you will need a prescription to obtain Adderall.
In Canada, the US, and the UK, you will need a prescription to obtain any pharmaceutical containing amphetamine salts, Adderall and its generic alternatives included. If you are found in possession of Adderall or alternatives, then you will be arrested and prosecuted.
Amphetamines are a controlled substance practically everywhere.
Even in Thailand, where you can buy pretty much anything from pharmacies, amphetamines are a Type 1 narcotic, which means it is treated in a similar way to heroin.
So in short, it is absolutely illegal to obtain Adderall without a prescription. Don’t do it!