Some people may know this compound as THE “memory enhancer”, but it’s so much more than that. Let's cover some basic info about Huperzine A.
Introduction: Origins, Uses & Benefits
Naturally found in the fir moss Huperzia serrata (a plant native to India and Southeast Asia), Huperzine A is a dietary supplement/nootropic that’s used for treatment of many illnesses.
More specifically: bruises, muscle strains, swelling, rheumatism and colds, for muscles and tendon relaxation, and for improving blood circulation.
Recently in China, this herb has also been used to treat schizophrenia, organo-phosphate poisoning (from some insecticides and herbicides), and myasthenia gravis, an autoimmune disease marked by muscle weakness and fatigue that worsens during activity and improves with rest.
Studies & Effects
For some years, Huperzine A has been investigated as a possible treatment for Alzheimer’s disease.
A 2013 meta-analysis found that it could may be effective when it comes to improving cognitive function, global clinical status, and activities of daily living for individuals with Alzheimer’s disease.
However, the first large-scale U.S. clinical trial of Huperzine A as a treatment for mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease found it provided no greater benefit than a placebo, so more research is needed to prove this connection.
Huperzine A has also been formally studied as a memory enhancement solution for students taking exams.
In the study, teenagers were given a memory test, and after it, they took either Huperzine A or a placebo. In addition to the memory test, they also had exams in language and mathematics covering the lessons received at school during the four-week time period.
At the end of the period, they were re-tested, and students who took Huperzine A did way better than their placebo taking peers when it came to language and memory tests.
Perhaps expected, Huperzine A could not improve their understanding of maths, but it did improve the students’ ability to retain and recall facts.
How It Works
Huperzine A is a huge preserver of acetylcholine (ACh). It manages to keep ACh from breaking down, thus allowing better memory recall.
Biopsy and postmortem studies have shown that there is a substantial absence of presynaptic cholinergic neurons in Alzheimer’s disease patients — in another words, they don’t make enough ACh to start off with; and they quickly lose much of what they do produce, after the ACh molecules cross the synapse (where they are broken down by the enzyme acetylcholinesterase — AChE).
The AChE inhibitors currently on the market for treating Alzheimer’s disease are already fairly effective in improving memory in these patients. In addition, these drugs may also act to slow disease progression through their neuroprotective effects.
However, the use of the four FDA-approved drugs is limited by their severe side effects on the digestive tract, lungs, and muscles. Acetylcholine is used in many parts of the body other than the brain, and increasing it throughout the body causes many disturbances.
On the other hand, Huperzine A doesn’t have this limitation because it appears to have a very strong affinity for brain cholinesterases only.
Huperzine A is usually taken in 200–400mcg daily doses, but it’s recommended to take a break from it every week or so, to avoid your body building tolerance.
It’s also water-soluble, so you do not need to consume it during your meal. In fact, it’s best to take it on an empty stomach for reasons discussed in the next point.
The most common side effects of huperzine A are limited to nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, and sweating.
Some rarer effects can include: blurred vision, slurred speech, restlessness, loss of appetite, twitching and contraction of muscle fibers, cramping, urinary incontinence, and high blood pressure.
Individuals with heart disease should also use it cautiously.
Lucid Dreaming Uses
However, with careful formula mixing and proper dosage in our lucid dreaming supplement LucidEsc, we have greatly reduced the chance of those side-effects occurring,
Adding ginger root (which has excellent natural digestion and stomach settling properties) to the formula alleviates the side effects for the small percentage of people who may otherwise experience some nausea.
The actual reason for including Huperzine A in this dreaming supplement is because achieving lucidity in your dreams can often be traced back to just having good memory and keeping dream journals, and as we concluded in this article, Huperzine A is a proven memory-enhancer.
But we didn’t stop there.
We’ve also paired it with Alpha GPC, another choline source which can increase the amount of ACh in the brain even further, thereby enhancing the effect of Huperzine A.
Now, if meeting your childhood heroes, bending reality to your will, or having intense sexual experiences in your dreams sounds interesting to you, try giving it a look.
You won’t regret it!