Methodology and Procedures
Target of this article is to inform you about the methodology and use of scientific procedures used in order to produce NZT.1 and future products. For reader convenience this article is separated in 4 parts, History, Target, Test-Phase, Fine-tuning and Future Targets.
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Paneuromix was founded by neuroscientist Roland Verment from Groningen (Holland) with a background in orthomolecular science. This is the science of how (natural) substances can influence processes in our body and mind to adjust and improve functioning. Besides this we used our over 10 years of experience with "nootropics" and "brain supplements". The goal was to create the best all-round brain supplement available, a sophisticated supplement with a balanced mix of efficacy, user convenience and reasonable price but without use of unproven hypes with high quality and highly dosed ingredient that will really enhance your cognition. Summer 2011 development started and june 2012 www.paneuromix.com was launched, after about one year an upgrade was made, this one is still called NZT.1. The next upgrade will be called NZT.2.
2.1 Targets for usage of the formula
Before we started the process we set some targets in terms of usage and effects of the formula:
- The formula must be complete. Most of us have a busy life and don't want to spend time or effort pulling a dozen of pots out of the closet everyday. The formula should provide all that is necessary for the brain to function optimally.
- The formula shouldn't merely activate and arouse your brain, but also be balanced with a feeling of calmness and overview. Otherwise you will get a hyperfocused, hyperactivated and agitated state, you will turn your brain in a Drag Racer. The formula works on 4 levels that partly overlap with the neurotransmitters dopamine (motivation,drive), acetyl-choline (memory), GABA (calmness) and noradrenaline (focus, mental energy).
- The capsules should be comfortable to swallow, that's why we chose the most convenient size of capsules.
- The effect should be noticable immediately for most users, in this way it can also be used Ad Hoc for special situations like exams and assessments.
- The formula should be suitable for long-term use, especially after long-term use the effect on memory becomes noticable.
2.2 Targets for cognitive effects of the formula
The targets for effect on cognition can be covered broadly by:
- Increased mental energy and drive
- Improved focus and concentration
- Improved memory
- Increased mental calmness and overview
With our extensive knowledge and experience in orthomolecular science and study on literature we selected around 200 substances that could be included in the formula. In a process of exclusion based on efficacy and effective dosage we reduced this to around 20 substances. With effective dosage we mean that substances that have a high effective dosage were excluded, because we want to keep your formula betweeen 1000mg and 1500mg. As an example GABA is used to create a calm feeling, but due to its poor absoprtion in the intestinal region it requires dosages of at least 500mg to be effective. A much better alternative is L-Theanine which is effective with a much lower dosage and also acts on the GABA system. L-Theanine is found in green tea and responsible for this nice tranquil feeling you have after drinking a cup. With only 50mg of L-Theanine we were able to balance the activating effect of DMAE and others with a nice calm feeling with a good overview.
After preselecting we started testing the effects on a group of 15 particpants. First we tested activating substances like DMAE, Ginseng, B-12, L-Tyrosine etc. These substances have an activating effect on our nervous system. You feel alert, awake and more energetic. The participants used these substances in real-life situations like reading, playing computer games etc. All effects were reported and analyzed and chosen according to effect on cognition.
After this we oriented on finding the best substances for improving memory. These are mostly acetyl-choline boosters. Besides this substances that created a mental calmness seemed to give a precondition for improving memory. In short, when you feel relaxed and without stress your memory will function better. Stress has a negative effect on neural connections, specifically those ascending and descending from the hippocampus. Besides this stress distracts attention, attention is a precondition for fixing memory traces.
After this we looked for the best substances with a lon-term effect on optimal brain functioning. Posphatidyl Serine is such an amazing substances, in a double blind study with golfers it was shown that long-term use of PS had a positive effect on swings and reduced stress during play. Another example is Bacopa Monnieri, that has been shown in multiple studies to improve general learning and cognition.
The final step was to add substances that improve mental calmness, as stated before they were also important for memory.
The final and most difficult step was to mix all ingredients and optimize dosages. Some ingredients had to be eliminated because they didn't work out the way as proposed when mixed together. Others were highly twitched in dosage. In the last version dosages of ginseng and Ginkgo were raised as well as DMAE. This gave a more tolerable formulation with more effect on cognition.
Contrary to many brands we keep developing NZT. At the moment we are developing NZT.2. We are using even better methods for this one. We will use objective tests in a double-blind setting that can be found on Cambride Brain Sciences. These are very reliable and scietifically solid tests that are available for everyone. We tested already some of the effects of NZT.1 as can be found here, http://www.paneuromix.com/test, you can also add your own results.