Nootropic is shorthand for mind or cognitive enhancing. Simple ideas always sound more mysterious when Greek-ified. Trubrain is an energy drink for the mind. But as its marketing makes clear, it purposely avoids everyone’s favorite daily stimulant—caffeine. Caffeine is so 19th century!
So what are some of the special ingredients? As a child of health-fanatic parents who kept their fridge well stocked with vitamins and supplements, I recognized a few of the nootropics in Trubrain—choline, magnesium, and tryosines. Piracatem was new to me and seems to improve circulation in the brain. This 40-year old synthetic form of some brain chemistry has been studied by researchers for treating dementia, aphasia, and other central nervous system disorders. The NIH has some articles on it—here’s one. Alcar, another nootropic in Trubrain, is a dietary supplement that you probably find in your favorite vitamin store.
A few years back while attending the Singularity Summit, I discovered a medical scientific subculture that views the cerebellum as a kind of organic CPU. And that means it can be “hacked” to get more cycles out of it and boost performance. Singularity ‘s main prophet Ray Kurzweil, now Google’s AI evangelist, believes that our minds will be uploaded (downloaded?) into robots thereby allowing mankind to achieve immortality. The ultimate hack.
Trubrain is operating within this humans-can-be-programmed genre. For my money, though, I still find caffeine and chocolate very effective. Santa Monica-based Trubrain is the brainchild of entrepreneur Chris Thompson and UCLA neuroscientist Andrew Hill, PhD.