Can nicotine keep Alzheimer's at bay? Dave Asprey explains how natural drugs can create super humans.
- Nootropics are colloquially known as 'smart drugs' – substances that increase cognitive function in healthy people. The word nootropic is a combination of two Greek words, noos meaning 'mind' and tropein meaning 'towards'.
- Dave Asprey discusses two naturally occurring smart drugs: Caffeine and nicotine. The latter might be a surprise, but while smoking, chewing tobacco and vaping have negative health consequences, there's evidence to suggest microdosing one milligram of nicotine, about 5% to 10% of a cigarette's worth, may protect against Alzheimer's.
- Beyond naturally occurring smart drugs, Asprey discusses aniracetam, a pharmaceutical cognitive enhancer pioneered in Russia that may improve memory input and recall.
LSD may help us change our lives by spurring perspective shifts.
- Psilocybin trip may turn banal insights into "sticky" and "revealed truths" that change the way we live our lives.
- For instance, LSD may be able to help smokers cut their addiction. How so? By allowing them to have a perspective shift on its effects.
- Sometimes the insights made during psychotherapy, after years of counseling, can be made with an LSD trip in a single afternoon.
The downsides of drug abuse are so clear that one would imagine smarter folks would stay away from them. The research suggests otherwise.
- Numerous studies have confirmed the link between intelligence and substance abuse.
- However, the mechanism for this correlation has been difficult to pin down.
- Why would more intelligent people, who should ostensibly know better, practice such a risky habit?
What are the plans, and are they enough?
- The opioid crisis in this country has drawn the attention of several presidential candidates.
- A few of the largest, most well thought out plans are examined here.
- Experts agree a huge investment in treatment is needed over a long period of time.
Michael Pollan explains what goes on during the mental fireworks of a psychedelic experience.
- If your ego had a "location" in the brain, it would be the default mode network, where much of your self-critical mind chatter happens. Taking psychedelics down-regulates this brain network.
- Researchers describe the effect of psychedelics as "letting the brain off its leash", or firing the conductor to let the orchestra play. Without the default mode network acting as a dictator, areas of the brain that don't normally interact meet, producing phenomena like hallucinations and synesthesia.
- An overactive ego may be what punishes those of us plagued with anxiety, addiction and mental health disorders. Psychedelics can have a beneficial effect by temporarily killing the ego, jogging the brain out of negative thinking patterns.