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piracetam without ANY choline source


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#1 brain

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Posted 04 February 2010 - 04:02 AM


experiences? isochroma is the only one i've heard of doing this long-term.

#2 Solthar

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Posted 04 February 2010 - 04:24 AM

experiences? isochroma is the only one i've heard of doing this long-term.

I've tried it, when I ran out of choline a short while ago. I noticed an almost constant mild headache, and was rather quick to anger. I don't suggest it. Next time I run out of choline, i'll just stop taking piracetam.

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#3 csrpj

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Posted 04 February 2010 - 04:26 AM

without choline, i'll feel negative and tired after the piracetam plateau. with choline, however, i actually feel a positive afterglow that lasts into the next day.

#4 viltro

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Posted 04 February 2010 - 04:29 AM

Actually, Isochroma's posts do refer to "my favourite thing, delicious egg yolks!!".

Personally, I got headaches after a couple of days and immediately started eating 2-4 eggs a day and plenty of milk. However, I'm now reducing my dosage so I'm hoping the headaches won't occur even without a choline source. I'll post an update in a few days about that.

Does anyone know why the choline source is actually necessary? I mean, piracetam affects acetylcholine efficiency in the brain right? But does it end up destroy it or something?

#5 Stan100

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Posted 04 February 2010 - 12:07 PM

I've been doing it without choline for the past 2 weeks (after stopping for about 2 months, when I used to use choline.) No bad effects at all, and now I'm seeing the fluency in speech I used to see.

#6 jackj

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Posted 04 February 2010 - 08:23 PM

I've been doing it for about a month and provided my diet has some eggs and red meat in it every now and then its OK. Once or twice though (after exercise and no food) I've gotten a headache so I have to look for a source of eggs pretty quick or make sure I don't forget before hand.

#7 Chaos Theory

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Posted 04 February 2010 - 09:15 PM

How do eggs compare to choline supplementation?

Some of the better choline forms are a bit pricey. If I'm covered with 3-4 whole eggs/day I might drop the choline supplementation.

#8 nito

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Posted 04 February 2010 - 09:59 PM

How do eggs compare to choline supplementation?

Some of the better choline forms are a bit pricey. If I'm covered with 3-4 whole eggs/day I might drop the choline supplementation.



The only down-part of eating 3-4 eggs a day is the gases i'm sure it will produce. And boy they don't smell good. I probably wouldn't mind if i worked on a farm - otherwise i'll pass 3/4 eggs a day. :-D

#9 What'sAllThisThen

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Posted 04 February 2010 - 11:31 PM

I have no idea about the exchange rate of eggs to other choline sources, but an egg contains about 125mg of choline.

I recommend the Egg Genie or similar devices for making soft/med/hard boiled eggs for anyone that prefers them that way. Way more efficient and wayyyy faster than boiling a pot of water. That's based on how I eat my eggs though, not based on choline source. I suppose raw might be the best for that.

#10 DairyProducts

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Posted 05 February 2010 - 12:36 AM

When I took a lot without any choline, I would occasionally get a mild to moderate headache, enough to make me not want to take it without choline. That seems to be what others are saying here too.

#11 brain

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Posted 05 February 2010 - 10:17 AM

When I took a lot without any choline, I would occasionally get a mild to moderate headache, enough to make me not want to take it without choline. That seems to be what others are saying here too.


Well, I have one theory that the headaches might go away in time once receptors up-regulate. Isochroma seems to claim this is what happened with him. He stopped the eggs due to problems with gas that some others have mentioned, and claimed that the headaches stopped after a month. I only have problems with the eggs if i hard-boil them, I'm fine if I fry them.

The other part of the theory is that loading with choline once the receptors do up-regulate (assuming they even do when a choline source is added) might lead to detrimental effects, and that boosting acetylcholine when upregulation is already present isn't the best idea for all people. This up-regulation combined with potent precursors could actually be a part of why piracetam stops working for some people after a couple of weeks, the amount of time it takes receptors to up-regulate. Not supplementing with any choline might lead to something more like a baseline state after the same amount of time, or the receptors might even continue to up-regulate past a point equivalent to baseline.

If the theory holds true, and piracetam inherently upregulates acetylcholine receptors from a mechanism other than acetylcholine depletion, supplementing with choline once this point is reached might overflow the brain with acetylcholine and reduce 5ht and DA substantially enough to cause some of the depressive symptoms or otherwise negative effects.

again, if we were to assume all of this was correct, the approach here would be to add choline initially and slowly taper the dose over a period of weeks. after two weeks to a month, no added choline would be necessary.

If you didn't supplement which any choline or eat eggs for the first 2 weeks - 1 month, then you would most likely experience headaches or brainfog up until that point. If this held true, one explanation for why more people haven't figured this out, and why so many people consider a choline source essential, is because the initial 2 - 4 week period of brainfog and headaches is roadblock enough for most not to stick it out and realize that clarity is a couple weeks around the corner.

I've never experienced brainfog or headaches when taking piracetam. This is because I never dared to take it without a choline source, after such widespread belief in it's necessity. The only anecdotal support I have of this is realizing, after taking piracetam for two months, that 150 of alpha-gpc worked better than 300 mg and brought back some of the old effects. That really surprised me. I never took more than half after that point, but I also never tried anything less, still believing that the piracetam 'needed' it.


This is all speculation and I'm fine admitting that it could be flat out wrong. I still can't see why piracetam needs acetylcholine if receptors up-regulate on their own. It's possible that they don't up-regulate if a choline source is added, that the two are one in the same, supplementation merely being a shortcut to what would otherwise happen naturally. If up-regulation was independent of choline levels and caused by piracetam though whatever mechanism, this would explain why 150 mg of alpha-gpc worked better than 300. If it was an independent mechanism, wouldn't receptors then have down-regulated in response to the higher dose of 300 mg? why would 150 mg have brought me closer to the effects at week 1, when the higher dose of alpha-gpc should have been creating more negative symptoms at the beginning? The answer, based on this logic, seems to be that receptors do up-regulate on their own and that lower and lower doses of choline are needed over time.

I'm going to be getting some more piracetam/alpha-gpc and will be testing this out soon. I have some other theories for why piracetam loses its magic (see: piracetam non-responders thread) but I'm starting to believe this might be one of the main reasons.

stan100: awesome to hear! I'm glad to see this is working for someone.
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#12 brain

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Posted 05 February 2010 - 11:40 AM

Sorry for the double post. Is anyone else unable to edit their posts?

I wanted to add something which drastically modifies my theory:

One hole I saw in my theory up there is that if all this were true, you should be able to drop the choline after you've been taking piracetam for a while and this would be helpful. I would guess that by this point different people have tried this, and I might guess that it didn't work out very well. One possibility for this is that over a period of weeks, supplementing with alpha-gpc or cdp-choline when combined with piracetam-induced acetylcholine up-regulation, down-regulates the brain's natural pathway for producing choline. It might take time for this pathway to up-regulate, at least several days. This is why the gradual tapering of choline might be needed - and why small doses might still be necessary. So, according to this theory, when both piracetam and a acetylcholine precursor are taken together, acetylcholine receptors up-regulate and choline-producing pathways down-regulate - due to direct replacement of natural choline pathways with the precursor. When piracetam is taken without a choline source, acetylcholine receptors up-regulate and the choline producing pathway likely also down-regulates, in an attempt to compensate. This may eventually lead to a state equivalent to baseline, i.e, creating no effect. It also may "stave" the receptors, potentially. Due to the the fixed nature of the piracetam-induced acetylcholine up-regulation, and therefore the limitation of the brain's ability to balance itself out in response to external choline supplementation, a much smaller dose of a choline source might be necessary.

in sum:

once receptors are up-regulated:

piracetam + full-dose choline source = too much choline. rough estimate at dose range is 100 mg and above of alpha-gpc or equivalent.

piracetam + no choline = choline pathway down-regulation, no effect, potentially starving receptors.

piracetam + low dose exogenous choline = perfect.

it may have to be alpha-gpc or cdp-choline, not regular choline, which would utilize a down-regulated pathway.

rough estimate at effective dose range once receptors are up-regulated = 20 - 80 mg alpha-gpc.

so, now I ask: for those of you taking piracetam with cdp-choline or alpha-gpc, and have for at least a month, try drastically reducing the dose of your choline precursor and post what happens here.


an estimate at a dosing plan for those starting piracetam and who think this has some merit may look something like this:

day 1 - 4 = 300 mg alpha-gpc (or equivalent)
day 4 - 8 = 150 mg alpha-gpc
day 8 - 12 = 100 mg alpha-gpc
day 12 - 16 = 50 mg alpha gpc
day 16 and beyond = 50 mg alpha-gpc + 50 / - 30

I'm getting these numbers intuitively, so they shouldn't be taken too literally. It also likely varies from person to person.

Edited by brain, 05 February 2010 - 11:48 AM.

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#13 viltro

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Posted 05 February 2010 - 01:23 PM

Sorry for the double post. Is anyone else unable to edit their posts?


I believe this is a feature. Prevents trolls, etc from removing the contents of a post and rendering the rest of the thread void of context. Editing is enabled for ~1 hour.

Your theory is interesting and once I've been on piracetam for a longer period I will definitely try it.

#14 antigravity

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Posted 06 February 2010 - 11:20 PM

Sorry for the double post. Is anyone else unable to edit their posts?

I wanted to add something which drastically modifies my theory:

One hole I saw in my theory up there is that if all this were true, you should be able to drop the choline after you've been taking piracetam for a while and this would be helpful. I would guess that by this point different people have tried this, and I might guess that it didn't work out very well. One possibility for this is that over a period of weeks, supplementing with alpha-gpc or cdp-choline when combined with piracetam-induced acetylcholine up-regulation, down-regulates the brain's natural pathway for producing choline. It might take time for this pathway to up-regulate, at least several days. This is why the gradual tapering of choline might be needed - and why small doses might still be necessary. So, according to this theory, when both piracetam and a acetylcholine precursor are taken together, acetylcholine receptors up-regulate and choline-producing pathways down-regulate - due to direct replacement of natural choline pathways with the precursor. When piracetam is taken without a choline source, acetylcholine receptors up-regulate and the choline producing pathway likely also down-regulates, in an attempt to compensate. This may eventually lead to a state equivalent to baseline, i.e, creating no effect. It also may "stave" the receptors, potentially. Due to the the fixed nature of the piracetam-induced acetylcholine up-regulation, and therefore the limitation of the brain's ability to balance itself out in response to external choline supplementation, a much smaller dose of a choline source might be necessary.

in sum:

once receptors are up-regulated:

piracetam + full-dose choline source = too much choline. rough estimate at dose range is 100 mg and above of alpha-gpc or equivalent.

piracetam + no choline = choline pathway down-regulation, no effect, potentially starving receptors.

piracetam + low dose exogenous choline = perfect.

it may have to be alpha-gpc or cdp-choline, not regular choline, which would utilize a down-regulated pathway.

rough estimate at effective dose range once receptors are up-regulated = 20 - 80 mg alpha-gpc.

so, now I ask: for those of you taking piracetam with cdp-choline or alpha-gpc, and have for at least a month, try drastically reducing the dose of your choline precursor and post what happens here.


an estimate at a dosing plan for those starting piracetam and who think this has some merit may look something like this:

day 1 - 4 = 300 mg alpha-gpc (or equivalent)
day 4 - 8 = 150 mg alpha-gpc
day 8 - 12 = 100 mg alpha-gpc
day 12 - 16 = 50 mg alpha gpc
day 16 and beyond = 50 mg alpha-gpc + 50 / - 30

I'm getting these numbers intuitively, so they shouldn't be taken too literally. It also likely varies from person to person.



According to your theory Piracetam and a good multivitamin (one that contains between 25-50mg or Choline) should do for maintenance . Additionally your protocol assumes there is no attack dose of Piracetam, rather lower dose divided across the day, and benefits would be cumulative. (makes better sense).

However here are my findings/experiences regarding Piracetam: Primaforce Piracetam Powder. Been using it on and off for about 2 months.

I have tried the below on a regular basis:
I found that Piracetam has given me brain fog/spinning dizziness/buzz WITH choline @ 400mg. Choline source used: Alpha-GPC 150mg. Mental acuity was very poor, impeded performance especially in declarative memory.
I found that Piracetam has given me headaches WITHOUT choline @ 100mg. (have gone as high as 1000mg)
Choline alone (alpha-GPC) gives me headaches @ 150mg. However lower doses (50-75mg) have not given me a headache, however when combined with Piracetam, didnt have a "synergistic" or improved effect.
I found piracetam causes me to have dry-mouth. When Piracetam wears off, I am groggy.

I have tried the following on an experimental basis:
Tried Piracetam and ALCAR- same as "super low dose choline" : didnt do anything.
Piracetam + Huperzine = horrible experience. Mental capabilities were very poor that day.

Despite what my experiences are above; I do find piracetam effective, dose dependently. The long term effects of Piracetam have been effective in improving my reasoning skills, and learning capabilities. BUT, during the time frame when dosing piracetam- the aforementioned occurs.
No other nootropics are used.
Any thoughts?

Best,
A.

Edited by antigravity, 06 February 2010 - 11:22 PM.


#15 medievil

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Posted 07 February 2010 - 12:14 AM

Ive allways taken piracetam without choline, allways worked good without any headaches.

#16 Imagination

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Posted 08 February 2010 - 07:25 AM

Try choline with out piracetam, i think that most of the effects people get from taking both come more from the choline.

#17 antigravity

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Posted 10 February 2010 - 12:58 AM

Tried solo:
CDP-choline: makes me very lightheaded
AlphaGPC: makes me very dizzy
Phosphatidylcholine: makes me very nauseus
Im am not sure what causes such a volatile reaction to the choline....

Piracetam (in coffee): Low-dose: sometimes mild forehead headache/tension pressure. Larger (standard doses- intense brainfog)
Low-dose: effective in mental clarity+thought so far...

#18 chrono

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Posted 11 February 2010 - 07:30 AM

If the theory holds true, and piracetam inherently upregulates acetylcholine receptors from a mechanism other than acetylcholine depletion, supplementing with choline once this point is reached might overflow the brain with acetylcholine and reduce 5ht and DA substantially enough to cause some of the depressive symptoms or otherwise negative effects.

again, if we were to assume all of this was correct, the approach here would be to add choline initially and slowly taper the dose over a period of weeks. after two weeks to a month, no added choline would be necessary.


I was introduced to piracetam about a year and a half ago, and many people in that group of friends use it and don't know about choline. I took it for 6-9 months without choline at first, then took a break. When I started again recently, I had some pretty pronounced brain fog/stuffy head/fatigue symptoms after 3 days of use, which I don't recall happening before. These are mostly relieved with Alpha GPC, though I usually get a different kind of foggy feeling later in the day...

This hypothesis is the first I've heard to explain my experience, or why so many of my friends have taken it for years without the negative effects that necessitate choline supplementation. When I introduce people to piracetam, I usually tell them to wait and see if any of the side effects crop up before taking choline.

I'm going to experiment with this idea once I've been taking piracetam/GPC steadily for another 4-6 weeks, and I think getting as many long-term users of piracetam as possible to report on this (along with a summary of effects w/o choline at the start of their course) would be incredibly useful.

#19 Ventus

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Posted 11 February 2010 - 05:14 PM

I went for 3 days with very minimal choline intake (400mg of bitartrate split between 3 days). I found that by the end of the third day my mental arithmetic was so bad that I needed calculator to do every simple calculation. I do not recall having this effect before. I would say too many neurons are firing or the acetylcholine levels are too low to excite nearby neurons sufficiently. before I was taking around 3 grams of choline bitartrate a day.

During the 3 days no side-affects were observed.

#20 Rage

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Posted 26 May 2010 - 07:01 PM

Well, I have one theory that the headaches might go away in time once receptors up-regulate. Isochroma seems to claim this is what happened with him. He stopped the eggs due to problems with gas that some others have mentioned, and claimed that the headaches stopped after a month. I only have problems with the eggs if i hard-boil them, I'm fine if I fry them.

The other part of the theory is that loading with choline once the receptors do up-regulate (assuming they even do when a choline source is added) might lead to detrimental effects, and that boosting acetylcholine when upregulation is already present isn't the best idea for all people. This up-regulation combined with potent precursors could actually be a part of why piracetam stops working for some people after a couple of weeks, the amount of time it takes receptors to up-regulate. Not supplementing with any choline might lead to something more like a baseline state after the same amount of time, or the receptors might even continue to up-regulate past a point equivalent to baseline.

If the theory holds true, and piracetam inherently upregulates acetylcholine receptors from a mechanism other than acetylcholine depletion, supplementing with choline once this point is reached might overflow the brain with acetylcholine and reduce 5ht and DA substantially enough to cause some of the depressive symptoms or otherwise negative effects.

again, if we were to assume all of this was correct, the approach here would be to add choline initially and slowly taper the dose over a period of weeks. after two weeks to a month, no added choline would be necessary.

If you didn't supplement which any choline or eat eggs for the first 2 weeks - 1 month, then you would most likely experience headaches or brainfog up until that point. If this held true, one explanation for why more people haven't figured this out, and why so many people consider a choline source essential, is because the initial 2 - 4 week period of brainfog and headaches is roadblock enough for most not to stick it out and realize that clarity is a couple weeks around the corner.

I've never experienced brainfog or headaches when taking piracetam. This is because I never dared to take it without a choline source, after such widespread belief in it's necessity. The only anecdotal support I have of this is realizing, after taking piracetam for two months, that 150 of alpha-gpc worked better than 300 mg and brought back some of the old effects. That really surprised me. I never took more than half after that point, but I also never tried anything less, still believing that the piracetam 'needed' it.


This is all speculation and I'm fine admitting that it could be flat out wrong. I still can't see why piracetam needs acetylcholine if receptors up-regulate on their own. It's possible that they don't up-regulate if a choline source is added, that the two are one in the same, supplementation merely being a shortcut to what would otherwise happen naturally. If up-regulation was independent of choline levels and caused by piracetam though whatever mechanism, this would explain why 150 mg of alpha-gpc worked better than 300. If it was an independent mechanism, wouldn't receptors then have down-regulated in response to the higher dose of 300 mg? why would 150 mg have brought me closer to the effects at week 1, when the higher dose of alpha-gpc should have been creating more negative symptoms at the beginning? The answer, based on this logic, seems to be that receptors do up-regulate on their own and that lower and lower doses of choline are needed over time.

I'm going to be getting some more piracetam/alpha-gpc and will be testing this out soon. I have some other theories for why piracetam loses its magic (see: piracetam non-responders thread) but I'm starting to believe this might be one of the main reasons.

stan100: awesome to hear! I'm glad to see this is working for someone.



Brain its your comment that has made me register and post this. I have read a LOT of literature on piracetam before trying it out. Mostly its droning on and on of people with very little facts. But these forums are different. And I can relate an experience that is consistent with Brain's theory.

I started taking piracetam 3 weeks ago, it was in the pills form. I really liked the stuff and ordered Primaforce piracetam powder.

->I had run out of the pills a week ago and was waiting for the powder to arrive. In the meantime I also got lecithin as choline source. There is no exact data on how much lecithin to take, i was mixing tablespoonfuls of it in my food.
Then I got my piracetam powder 2 days ago and took 1.5g, same as two 800mg pills I used to take before. It has been giving me headache or showing no effect. I was having doubts on the powder if I got the fake stuff.

According to brains theory I went wrong. I started off on no choline with excellent results. Then took some choline as eggs with good results. Ran out of piracetam, kept on taking lecithin choline thinking it was good for me. Now took piracetam with a lot of choline as lecithin giving the worst results. Means my receptors could have up regulated and I fried them. Or have just bogged down my brain in choline.
Now I have just taken piracetam with a very little 400mg choline that is 2g of lecithin , giving my brain time to recover. I will keep doing this till I get results, giving myself time to adjust in a month perhaps.

I think people screw up because they may expect results fast. Same as many people burn while working on their bodies.


Anyone who has any insights is welcome. How long will it take. I hope this works as the weeks when it did work were the best days of my life.
I forget names and have a mild social anxiety disorder. I totally could recall every name and every detail of anything. I was completely at ease when outside in a large crowd. My mind was always in the 'turbo' mode. I had the clearest imagination. Music was more lucid. My sense of smell was more acute. I had the easiest time focusing. I had no difficulty learning and could sit hours and hours on the end absorbing stuff.

Edited by Rage, 26 May 2010 - 07:21 PM.


#21 John Barleycorn

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Posted 27 May 2010 - 06:31 AM

Well, I have one theory that the headaches might go away in time once receptors up-regulate ...

The other part of the theory is that loading with choline once the receptors do up-regulate (assuming they even do when a choline source is added) might lead to detrimental effects, and that boosting acetylcholine when upregulation is already present isn't the best idea for all people. This up-regulation combined with potent precursors could actually be a part of why piracetam stops working for some people after a couple of weeks, the amount of time it takes receptors to up-regulate. Not supplementing with any choline might lead to something more like a baseline state after the same amount of time, or the receptors might even continue to up-regulate past a point equivalent to baseline ...

I still can't see why piracetam needs acetylcholine if receptors up-regulate on their own. It's possible that they don't up-regulate if a choline source is added, that the two are one in the same, supplementation merely being a shortcut to what would otherwise happen naturally.


Correct me if I'm wrong, but my understanding is that piracetam, amongst all its varied actions, is primarily an acetylcholine agonist (much stronger than aniracetam in this department BTW). However, one unusual feature is that it doesn't actually increase the amount of acetylcholine in the synapse; instead, it mainly increases receptor sensitivity. Actually, this mechanism is not completely unique, because benzodiazapines do something similar with GABA receptors. Trained neuropharmacologists are welcome at this point to deconstruct "something similar". :)

So this means that piracetam effectively upregulates the receptors, but it is possible/probable that chronic administration is likely to result in down-regulation if anything (unless this is a rare example of a substance that doesn't have a rebound). However, there is also the possibility that an initial period of increasing bioavailability might be required before effects are noticed. One obvious variable that might impact all these cycles is prior choline adequacy in the diet; another is simultaneous consumption of other cholinergics, like nicotine.

Edited by John Barleycorn, 27 May 2010 - 06:34 AM.


#22 chrono

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Posted 22 June 2010 - 04:24 AM

If the theory holds true, and piracetam inherently upregulates acetylcholine receptors from a mechanism other than acetylcholine depletion, supplementing with choline once this point is reached might overflow the brain with acetylcholine and reduce 5ht and DA substantially enough to cause some of the depressive symptoms or otherwise negative effects.

again, if we were to assume all of this was correct, the approach here would be to add choline initially and slowly taper the dose over a period of weeks. after two weeks to a month, no added choline would be necessary.


This hypothesis is the first I've heard to explain my experience, or why so many of my friends have taken it for years without the negative effects that necessitate choline supplementation. When I introduce people to piracetam, I usually tell them to wait and see if any of the side effects crop up before taking choline.

I'm going to experiment with this idea once I've been taking piracetam/GPC steadily for another 4-6 weeks, and I think getting as many long-term users of piracetam as possible to report on this (along with a summary of effects w/o choline at the start of their course) would be incredibly useful.

So at the moment I'm taking 1000mg ALCAR wth each dose of 800mg piracetam to fulfill acetylcholine requirements. A few times in the past 5 months I've run out and continued taking piracetam. It takes a few days, but those negative effects surely creep up on me, until I suddenly realize I feel really crappy and most unlike myself. Once I was at a friend's house and was so busy I wasn't managing my supps very well, and it took me a couple days to figure out why I felt this way (so in other words, I'm pretty sure it's not placebo).

Been doing some research into ACh biosynthesis this week. I think the alteration in my need for choline has a pretty simple explanation. Back when I first started, I was drinking a LOT of fruit juice every day, as well as eating a lot of pasta. When I started again and required choline, I had phased out juice completely in favor of water, and was trying to eat less pasta. Glucose is the second-most preferred substrate for contributing the acetyl moiety in the synthesis of acetylcholine, and I had a lot more of it in my system.

I think a lot of the variation in need for supplementation can be put down to individual factors. Diet will affect how much choline and acetyl groups are available. And there are many individual physiological factors that determine how fast this reaction occurs...for instance, expression and activity levels of the enzymes choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) and choline acetylesterase (AChE), and activity of the high- and low-affinity choline transporters/uptake system.

#23 health_nutty

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Posted 22 June 2010 - 04:26 AM

If the theory holds true, and piracetam inherently upregulates acetylcholine receptors from a mechanism other than acetylcholine depletion, supplementing with choline once this point is reached might overflow the brain with acetylcholine and reduce 5ht and DA substantially enough to cause some of the depressive symptoms or otherwise negative effects.

again, if we were to assume all of this was correct, the approach here would be to add choline initially and slowly taper the dose over a period of weeks. after two weeks to a month, no added choline would be necessary.


This hypothesis is the first I've heard to explain my experience, or why so many of my friends have taken it for years without the negative effects that necessitate choline supplementation. When I introduce people to piracetam, I usually tell them to wait and see if any of the side effects crop up before taking choline.

I'm going to experiment with this idea once I've been taking piracetam/GPC steadily for another 4-6 weeks, and I think getting as many long-term users of piracetam as possible to report on this (along with a summary of effects w/o choline at the start of their course) would be incredibly useful.

So at the moment I'm taking 1000mg ALCAR wth each dose of 800mg piracetam to fulfill acetylcholine requirements. A few times in the past 5 months I've run out and continued taking piracetam. It takes a few days, but those negative effects surely creep up on me, until I suddenly realize I feel really crappy and most unlike myself. Once I was at a friend's house and was so busy I wasn't managing my supps very well, and it took me a couple days to figure out why I felt this way (so in other words, I'm pretty sure it's not placebo).

Been doing some research into ACh biosynthesis this week. I think the alteration in my need for choline has a pretty simple explanation. Back when I first started, I was drinking a LOT of fruit juice every day, as well as eating a lot of pasta. When I started again and required choline, I had phased out juice completely in favor of water, and was trying to eat less pasta. Glucose is the second-most preferred substrate for contributing the acetyl moiety in the synthesis of acetylcholine, and I had a lot more of it in my system.

I think a lot of the variation in need for supplementation can be put down to individual factors. Diet will affect how much choline and acetyl groups are available. And there are many individual physiological factors that determine how fast this reaction occurs...for instance, expression and activity levels of the enzymes choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) and choline acetylesterase (AChE), and activity of the high- and low-affinity choline transporters/uptake system.


BINGO! I think this is why straight lecithin isn't doing much for me: I'm on a low carb diet. Alcar is being ordered.

Edited by health_nutty, 22 June 2010 - 04:27 AM.


#24 chrono

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Posted 22 June 2010 - 05:40 AM

BINGO! I think this is why straight lecithin isn't doing much for me: I'm on a low carb diet. Alcar is being ordered.

Ah, interesting! I thought 5-7g per dose was an awful lot for such little effect. But then again, lecithin is very inconsistent.

The first most-preferred substrate before glucose itself is pyruvate, which I just found out is created from glucose. And the third substrate: acetylcarnitine. So yeah, if you have low glucose levels, I think supplementation of choline becomes more important; but ALCAR probably makes more sense, since it contributes to the deficient pool of acetyl groups. The enzymes may be less able to react to ACh depletion if there is a smaller pool of these three compounds floating around.

Edited by chrono, 11 October 2010 - 08:52 PM.
clarity


#25 outsider

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Posted 09 October 2010 - 08:56 AM

BINGO! I think this is why straight lecithin isn't doing much for me: I'm on a low carb diet. Alcar is being ordered.

Ah, interesting! I thought 5-7g per dose was an awful lot for such little effect. But then again, lecithin is very inconsistent.

The first most-preferred substrate before glucose itself is pyruvate, which I just found out is created from glucose. And the third substrate: acetylcarnitine. So yeah, if you have low glucose levels, I think supplementation of choline becomes more important; but ALCAR probably makes more sense, since it contributes to the same pool of acetyl groups. The enzymes may be less able to react to ACh depletion if there is a smaller pool of these three compounds floating around.


I've read somewhere a couple of years ago that ALCAR was one of the few substances that could be used by the brain as energy when glucose was low if I remember correctly.

#26 longevitynow

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Posted 09 October 2010 - 12:14 PM

For me, EGGS SUCK AS A CHOLINE SOURCE FOR PIRACETAM. I eat a lot of raw eggs, maybe 12-18 a week. I have frequently gotten headaches with Piracetam even with this high dose of choline from eggs. Choline Bitartrate, 200 mgs or more per Piracetam dose (or even once per day), no headaches. Anyone else notice this? I've used GPC and CDP also, no headaches, but didn't see any noticeably improved nootropic effect, so went for the cheap stuff.

#27 Elus

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Posted 09 October 2010 - 07:14 PM

2.4g piracetam per day for the past month. No ill effects observed thus far.

#28 jlspartz

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Posted 18 October 2010 - 03:13 PM

I've read somewhere a couple of years ago that ALCAR was one of the few substances that could be used by the brain as energy when glucose was low if I remember correctly.


You may have just solved my issue. Here is my experience. I did have headaches at the beginning, but I got over them - it took maybe 2 months for me. I used piracetam off and on for about a year for as little as a couple days to 4 months in a row. Dosages between 800mg - 4g. At about 3g is when I would get a slight headache. Eggs only had a minor effect. Choline bitartrate gave me a drunk effect - everything was slowed, even my balance was off - don't know why. I feel great when intially taking piracetam and after a while I start to get brain fog and lose focus. My brain is still more responsive but I have to try harder to direct it, like it's getting tired and sleep does not fix it - I have to stop taking the piracetam for a couple days. I noticed eating red meat makes me feel good again though. I just looked up ALCAR and found that it's main natural source is in red meat.

#29 Mindweaver

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Posted 18 October 2010 - 11:21 PM

Being that this is a topic about Cholinergic supplementation with Piracetam, I figured that my inquiry applies:

I have been supplementing with AlphaGPC/CDPCholine~300mg + Piracetam~800mg + ALCAR~500mg daily for a couple of months. The results are unbelievable, but with all this talk about upregulation and downregulation, is it safe? I've always been weary of what will happen when I stop using Piracetam and nootropics all together, as I don't want to fall into a position where I rely on it.. but will my receptors adapt? As far as I know, when I'm not using Piracetam for ~a week or so, it seems that the effects of these nootropics linger, and I don't really 'come down' from them. The only thing I'll notice is that, because I take Piracetam immediately in the morning, it may take a bit longer to 'wake up' fully without it.. but that's not a big deal, as I'm back to normal within the first hour of waking up.

My question: should I expect to have cholinergic issues as I age, if I stop using Piracetam after continuing to use it for a few years? Of course I don't expect the exact answer, as these issues are rather unstudied in long-term, but what would your best guess be? In addition, is it necessary to use Choline and ALCAR at the same time? Or should I, similarly to what I do with GPC/CDP, just use it interchangeably with the other choline sources?

Edited by Mindweaver, 18 October 2010 - 11:21 PM.


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#30 brain

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Posted 19 October 2010 - 01:07 AM

I'd just like to add that I've completely revoked my old no-choline hypothesis and now supplement with either ALCAR or alpha-gpc when I use piracetam.




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