How Prevalent is Nootropics Usage in Silicon Valley?

Article by: David Gracey
how prevalent is nootropics use in silicon valley

Like most people, you’ve probably heard of the name nootropics or “smart drugs”, and even the term biohacking before.  (Especially since you found your way to this website!)

Although these terms are fairly new, human beings have been attempting to improve their bodies and minds (what we know as “hacking” today) to achieve things not considered possible for the average person. 

This practice has been going on for multiple decades now,  if not centuries!

The means of acheiving this were a bit different of course; like making use of meditation and psychedelic drugs, but the goal has always been the same. 

To achieve something beyond what most people believe is possible as far as it relates to human potential.

Now, what the large majority of these biohackers of today are doing, is using nootropics (or smart drugs) to chemically alter their brain function to achieve something beyond the scope of conventional wisdom.

They are looking for a competetive edge…

Still, the truth is that most people don’t fully believe in the effectiveness of nootropics due to the lack of “settled science” or complete scientific studies on them.  This is partially due to a lack of funding.

But when a place as influential as Silicon Valley starts paying massive attention to the world of nootropic substances and brain hacking, new-found credibility is discovered, and the game is changed forever.

Nootropics are very prevalent in Silicon Valley, especially when compared to other populated areas.  Entrepreneurs and programmers alike are using every advantage available to them to finish challenging projects. 

Meaning, improving their focus, alertness, and concentration.  That advantage is nootropics / smart drugs!  Their main goal is to maximize the productivity of their mind and body to produce their best work possible, and at a fast pace.

Now, if you’re interested in the world of nootropics and understand how this is not just for the Silicon Valley guys or gals anymore,  then keep reading this article.

I believe that nootropics are actually for anyone and everyone who wants to go beyond what they think their brain is currently capable of achieving.  With that said, let’s continue…

People Take Nootropics In Silicon Valley To Enhance Their Overall Performance

The main reason, (and usually the only one) that people take nootropics is that they want to enhance their mental performance.

Nootropics improve your brain’s performance and in most cases, they improve your physical performance as well.

improve mental performance

The whole purpose is to optimize the brain and body so you can do more and produce more at a faster pace without sacrificing quality.  Imagine being able to concentrate, focus, and learn faster and more efficiently.

That’s the promise of most nootropics.

They can also help with depression and anxiety, as well as many other things that affect the brain.

Now, if you’re a little bit skeptical, don’t worry.  Most people are. 

The key to understanding why nootropics may be a helpful solution is to learn about how they affect your brain directly.

They don’t permanently alter your brain, but they can chemically impact it to the point where you can have a noticeable improvement in overall performance.

So, that’s the whole reason why people in Silicon Valley as well as other places are taking nootropics.  In most cases, they are entrepreneurs that want to get the most of what their brains have to offer, and maximize their personal potential.
What Do Silicon Valley Nootropics Users Expect?
1. Improved alertness
2. Better focus
3. Increased concentration
4. Better memory
5. Faster learning
6. Optimized cognitive functions
7. Ability to speed through challenging projects
These are just some of the benefits that nootropics can offer you.  Now, to understand how nootropics can provide all of these benefits, you need to understand how they operate within your body after taking them.

How Nootropics Act On The Brain

Nootropics work by increasing the levels of important neurotransmitters.

Neurotransmitters are chemical messengers that allow your neurons to communicate with every other cell in your body, including your brain.

They play important roles in various bodily functions such as moving, mood, learning, and focus.

Nootropics also affect other chemicals in your brain such as GABA receptors but the neurotransmitters are the main ones.

Dopamine, serotonin, norepinephrine, and epinephrine are the mains ones.

They’re involved in mood regulation, muscle movement, focus, learning, and many other processes in your brain.  This is how nootropics work.  They increase the levels of these neurotransmitters when your brain is depleted, which increases your cognitive performance.

That’s why people in Silicon Valley take nootropics to begin with.  They can help to improve your focus, alertness, attention, energy, learning, memory, mood, anxiety, and motivation. 

All of which can all improve your performance at work.  These neurotransmitters also help your brain and body deal with stress by reducing your cortisol levels.

stress and anxiety
So, this is why nootropics are so prevalent in Silicon Valley.

Now, they may not be for everyone, which is exactly what you’ll soon find out below.

So, let’s find out whether or not nootropics are for you.

Nootropics May Not Be For Everyone

Nootropics might not be for everyone.

They require a certain level of curiosity and a strong will to improve your full potential.

Taking Nootropics Requires You to:

  1. Do extensive research
  2. Test out different substances to see what works best for YOU
  3. Pay close attention to the results and effects they had on you personally
  4. Review your findings, and ultimately be patience.

Still, if you’re willing to do this, you can improve your overall cognitive performance, and take your human potential to the next level.

The reason people in Silicon Valley take them so religiously, is because they’re trying to squeeze every last ounce of potential out of their brain and body.

When you can increase your focus consistently for a few hours or days, you can achieve more than you’ve ever done before.

Now, Don’t Get me Wrong… Nootropics are NOT Magic Pills.

You can increase focus, memory, and learning capacity, but it won’t make you a genius overnight.

It’ll just allow you to optimize what you already have, getting you closer to your true potential.

So, if you’re willing to explore the maximum potential of your brain in order to achieve more, then nootropics can be great for you.

You should get started with long-term nootropics.

Those are the ones that you can take for an extended period with mild side effects.

Then, you can try some more short-term ones like Noopept or Modafinil.

What Types of Nootropics are Prevelant in Silicon Valley? (What Do they Use Most?)

Figuring out what nootropics people in Silicon Valley take doesn’t take you to a straight answer.

It really depends on the person that’s taking the nootropic, and what results they’re looking for.  Not to mention the fact that different nootropics work differently from one person to another!

Still, there are some common ones that you can learn more about.

These are some of the most common nootropics that people in Silicon Valley take.  They help with depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues as well as cognitive enhancement.

They mainly enhance brain performance, which helps with concentration, focus, attention, memory, learning, and stress.

This is what allows everyone to finish their tasks faster and work at optimal levels.

If you’re ready to join the Silicon Valley crowd, and start taking nootropics for yourself, first you need to do your research and figure out which substance  is best recommended for your situation.

The best way is to start with the ones that are beginner-friendly.

They have fewer side effects and rarely interact with other nootropics and medication.

Caffeine & L-theanine is a great starter nootropic stack.

What Is A Nootropic Stack, And How Can I Create One?

balancing act
One thing that the people in Silicon Valley, (and the biohacking community in general) talk about all the time, is “what’s your current stack?”.

A stack is a combination of nootropics that you take every day.

Some people take up to 15 pills in the morning, but not all stacks are this complex or complicated.  It’s basically a chemical balancing act to ensure optimal mental and physical performance.

Now, to create your own custom nootropic stack, one has to understand  interaction, synergy, and long-term vs. short-term nootropics.

Starting with long-term vs. short-term, these are the nootropics that you can take for just a few days vs. the ones that you can take for several weeks at a time.

Most studies don’t go farther than 12 weeks.

Then, you need to learn about interactions, which is when taking one substance interacts with another.  This can either boost your progress, or cause serious side effects.

When the interaction is good and the results get a boost, you have what’s called synergy.  This is the whole point for creating a stack.

So, what you need to learn is which nootropics work well together and can help boost your results.

This is the first step to creating your stack.

Where To Get Started?  Joining the Silicon Valley Nootropics Users!

Most people, the ones in Silicon Valley included, start with nootropics that have close to no side effects, and that are safe to take long-term.

They’re easy to find, and you can take them without any major worries.  Those are the best nootropics to get started.

The Best Starter Nootropics:
Lion’s Mane Mushroom
These nootropics are great for beginners because they don’t have many side effects.

If you take the right dosage, you should experience no side effects.  They’re great for depression, anxiety, and boosting your focus and attention.

Once you get used to those nootropics, you’ll be more ready to try something that can take your focus and memory to another level.

Other Strategies Beyond Biohacking

People in Silicon Valley don’t rely solely on nootropics to get the boost in their performance that they have.

They use other strategies beyond biohacking.

The main one is fasting.  People that fast claim that going 24 hours without eating boosts their productivity.

They also use other strategies beyond nootropics like changing their diet. The reason they do this is that our bodies waste too much energy processing the food we eat.

Since your gut and your brain are connected, it makes sense to fast and change your diet to less processed food and less refined sugar to boost your brain’s performance.

So, if you want to boost your results with nootropics, try going beyond it and doing some fasting and changing your diet.

>> Learn more about “Psychobiotics and the gut-brain connection” here…

So, How Prevalent is Nootropic Usage in Silicon Valley? – Final Thoughts…

So, to answer that question… YES!

Nootropics are actually quite prevalent in Silicon Valley.

It seems that almost everyone there takes at least one form of brain enhanceing supplement or another.  Some are as simple as a caffeine and l-theanine beginners stack, and others take much stronger smart drugs like adderall or other ADHD prescription drugs.

The general consensus in Silicon Valley seems to be that “everybody is on something”.

Heck, why do you think I’m writing this article?  It’s because it is a well-known fact that people there are using all sorts of brain enhancing techniques and supplements.

This isn’t necesarily a bad thing, since nootropics can be great for your mental performance, as well as your health when used correctly.

The Secret?

The secret is paying attention to the balance of  benefits VS. possible side effects that you’re experiencing.

Afterall, the whole point of taking nootropics in the first place it to gain a competetive advantage.  Therefore it just makes sense to watch out for any negative side effects that can potentially derail you from acheiving that much sought after advantage!

So, has the extreme use of smart drugs in Silicon Valley influenced your decision to try out any brain enhancing supplements?

If so, what stacks have you tried, or are currently taking right now?

Drop me a comment Below! 

– David

About David Gracey

About David Gracey

Founder of

Hey! My name is David Gracey.  I am the brain child of and a Cognitive Brain Function Researcher, Avid Biohacker, Lucid Dreamer, Morning Ritual Master, and Self-Proclaimed Nootropic Junkie of Sorts! 

In other words, I am completely obsessed with anything and everything related to cognitive brain enhancement! 

Whether it's nootropic supplements, challenging brain puzzles, or even meditation techniques, chances are, I've tried it!  This website is my outlet to give back and share what I've learned in the past 15+ years in this field of study. 

You Can Read My Other Posts Here: 



Check out these other posts!

About David:

Hey! I’m so glad you’re here. My name is David Gracey. I am a cognitive brain function researcher, avid biohacker, and self-proclaimed nootropic junkie of sorts! (And, yes, a bit of a nerd as well...) I created this website as an outlet to share my passion for self improvement and cognitive brain enhancement. Got questions? Shoot me a message!










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