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Adrafinil Review | Dosages, Side effects & everything you MUST know

Updated: Apr 18, 2022

If you're looking for an in-depth guide on Adrafinil, you've come to the right place because In this article, we'll discuss everything you need to know about this powerful smart drug:

We'll compare it to Modafinil, explore where to buy it, understand its legality, look at the side effects, and recommend dosages.

Plus, we'll ask: is Adrafinil a safe nootropic? Keep reading this comprehensive Adrafinil review to find out!

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Adrafinil Overview

So what is Adrafinil? It's a eugeroic drug - meaning it promotes wakefulness (think of it like caffeine, but without the jitters and crash).

It was originally developed in 1974 by a French pharmaceutical company named Lafon Laboratories; that's the firm who later synthesized Modafinil, in 1976.

The original intention of Adrafinil when it was released to the French public in 1985, was to treat narcolepsy and other sleep disorders. And while it's not as popular as Modafinil, it's still used for the same purpose today, even though its brand name version "Olmifon" was discontinued in 2011.

With that being said, today Adrafinil is sold by numerous pharma firms and as a result, is much cheaper and easier to obtain than Modafinil.

Adrafinil (AKA CRL-40028) is a prodrug of modafinil - meaning your body metabolizes it into Modafinil in the liver, So when you take Adrafinil, you're really taking Modafinil.

Both drugs are considered “Wakefulness-Promoting Agents” and work similarly, but there are some key differences between the two:

  • Modafinil is a more potent drug, and it has a longer half-life than Adrafinil. This means that Modafinil stays in your system for a longer time, thus it takes longer for the effects to wear off.

But haven't we just wrote that they are practically the same substance?

Yes, but the process of Adrafinil breaking down and metabolize into its metabolite Modafinil by the liver, creates different biological circumstances.

Adrafinil has an onset period of 1-2 hours, and reaches peak plasma levels between 2-4 hours after administration, so as you can see the pharmacokinetics and metabolism is different compared to Modafinil.

  • Modafinil is also a more selective drug - it binds more tightly to receptors in the brain than Adrafinil does.

Anecdotally speaking, the two drugs have different cognitive effects. Modafinil tends to improve focus and task flexibility, whereas Adrafinil can increase feelings of euphoria. So if you’re looking for a drug that will help you concentrate on a task, modafinil is a slightly better option as a cognitive enhancer, albeit harder to come by.


Adrafinil Benefits & Pharmacology

So when it comes to neurochemistry - how Adrafinil affects our nerve cells and the whole central nervous system?

Adrafinil mainly alters the hypothalamus and amygdala brain regions, which results in a more active and alert state, but also curbs fear via amygdala inhibition - a unique and intriguing effect that may exert fearlessness.

It also has an effect on the hippocampus, which is responsible for memory formation.

The mechanism of action (MOA) of this pharmacological cognitive enhancer (PCE), results in increased vigilance, motivation, mood, and wakefulness.

As stipulated, it sometimes used to treat narcolepsy, but also attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

However, the long-term research on Adrafinil is lacking and most of the studies done on this drug are short-term.

Additionally , Adrafinil operates on the orexin system, this system is responsible for the wakefulness-promoting and feeding behaviors in animals.

When orexin activity is increased, it results in a state of wakefulness and alertness - however, this scientific study indicated that Modafinil still exerts wakefulness in mice with a hindered orexin system, indicating that even with a lack of orexin neurons, modafinil still delivers results (this may be valid for Adrafinil as well, considering the close similarities).

Adrafinil also has an effect on the dopamine and norepinephrine systems. Norepinephrine is commonly known as noradrenaline, and is paramount to cognitive traits such as focus, ambition, and memory.

So we covered Adrafinil pharmacological profile and how it acts in the brain, but what can the average nootropics user expect from Adrafinil?

Adrafinil is a versatile cognitive enhancer which improves a lot of areas in cognition:

  • Adrafinil helps you stay awake and alert - like we've stipulated, Adrafinil is a very well known Eugeroic that, unlike other chemical compounds like caffeine or Adderall, does not elicit any jitteriness or crash.

  • Improves your focus and concentration - This happens as a direct result from the elevations of Dopamine (DA) and Norepinephrine (DE), both of which are regulating things like focus, motivation, memory and resilience . One study concluded:

"Effects of modafinil on motor activity and neurochemistry were determined in rats undergoing in vivo microdialysis in nucleus accumbens. Of the receptors and transporters assayed, modafinil displayed measurable potency only at DA transporters (DAT), inhibiting"

Yes this study was on modafinil, yet in theory, Adrafinil and Modafinil should share the same Mechanism of Action (MOA), as seen in the medical literature.

  • Supports memory formation and recall - Adrafinil has been shown to have effects on cognitive functions such as learning and memory according to a preliminary research done on old aged dogs.

According to these studies, which included 951 older individuals, adrafinil was found to improve memory recollection, whilst mitigating memory loss.

One of these studies was a double-blind randomized & controlled trial, which adds to its credibility; however, further clinical trials on humans are lacking.

  • Adrafinil may suppress your appetite - this is because it has stimulant properties Although there is no clinical evidence to support this notion, thus Anecdotal in nature - some users report the drug may help you control your appetite.

This claim is plausible from a biological standpoint because Adrafinil's mechanism of action, which among other things, stimulates the orexin neural pathways, these regulate and control hunger and appetite.

  • Plus, Adrafinil may alter your creativity - one Redditor expressed his feelings:

"Both times I have felt ultra creative. I want to start up my personal business again, start a marketing campaign, Make a movie, load new software on my computer, write a book, write this post, upgrade my computer, build a new computer... and so much more. I keep seeing vivid "movies" in my head of what I want to do today"

However, with all due respect to that specific Redditor, clinical trials concluded that modafinil may hinder creativity for creative individuals , but other research suggests that it might actually improve it. So, the effects of Adrafinil on creativity are still obscure. However, one thing is for sure, and that is adrafinil’s potential to increase productivity levels.

All in all, Adrafinil is a cognitive enhancer that can be used to improve focus and concentration, support memory formation and recall, suppress appetite, as well as alter creativity.

It works on the orexin neural pathways, which are responsible for regulating hunger and appetite, and also on dopaminergic, norepinephrinergic, histaminergic and glutamatergic systems.

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Adrafinil Safety & Side effects

So we understood that Adrafinil can facilitate a robust cognitive augmentation, but are there any side effects to be warry about?

Generally speaking, Adrafinil is a highly safe smart drug, however it does consists of different side effects, such as:

  • Headaches - This is the most commonly reported side effect. It's likely caused by the fact that Adrafinil increases levels of excitatory neurotransmitters like glutamate.

  • Dry mouth - Again, this is likely due to the increase in neurotransmitters.

  • Nausea - This may be a result of the aforementioned side effects or even an overdose.

  • Anxiety and insomnia- These are less common side effects that usually only manifest if you're taking high dosages of Adrafinil (>300mg/day).

These side effects often are mild and can be mitigated through intelligent use, follow these healthy habits to have a pleasant experience and reduce the Chance of unnecessary byproducts.

  1. Drink plenty of water - we cannot stress this enough, water is the best nootropic out there, be sure to drink at least 1.5 litters a day.

  2. Do not take it every day - Adrafinil should be used on an as-needed basis, taking it every day will lead to a tolerance build up, although it has a low abuse potential, it's imperative to be aware of any dependence to the drug that builds up.

  3. Start with the lowest possible dose - 150mg is more than enough for most people, if you find yourself needing more increase the dosage incrementally (200mg ->250mg->300mg).

  4. Do not take it late in the day - For healthy individuals without sleep related medical conditions, Adrafinil is designed to be taken early in the day, so it won't interfere with sleep.

  5. Food! - Adrafinil is biologically demanding, it's important to get enough nutrients even though it might reduce appetite.

More serious side effects could be:

  • Chest pain, or fast a pounding heart, if that happens discontinue use immediately if that happens.

  • Adrafinil has also been known to increase blood pressure, so people with hypertension or other heart problems should avoid it altogether.

  • Liver damage - There have been a few reported cases of liver damage caused by adrafinil. This is likely because Adrafinil is metabolized by the liver and can cause hepatotoxicity in high doses.

Because Adrafinil must be converted to Modafinil, the liver's workload rises when taking Adrafinil. This can lead to potential liver damage with long-term use.

That's why while both Modafinil and Adrafinil are powerful drugs, it's believed that Modafinil is the better option for those seeking cognitive enhancement. The fact that it does not put unnecessary strain on the liver makes it a safer choice in the long run.

It's important to ask a health care provider what he thinks - so if you have or had any heart or liver problems, consult with your doctor to asses if the drug is right for you.


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Adrafinil legality

It's important to understand if Adrafinil is confined inside a legal gray territory or totally ok to purchase?

Adrafinil is a nootropic drug that is unscheduled in the U.S., Canada, and the United Kingdom, meaning it's classified as a "dietary supplement" rather than a prescription medication; This means it's neither FDA-approved nor regulated, and you don't need a prescription to buy or have it.

You might think there is a downside to using unregulated supplements, and for most cases that's true, but Adrafinil used to be regulated by the FDA, so they already assessed its safety profile.

In other words - Adrafinil is 100% legal in most countries, however due to legal requirements there are shipping restriction to Romania, we advise you understand the legal status of the drug in your country before ordering it.


Adrafinil Dosage

Adrafinil dosages vary depending on the person.

It's recommended that you start with a low dose and increase it gradually until you find the dosage that works best for you. Most people find dosages between 100-300 mg to be effective.

However, it's important to note that taking high doses of adrafinil can increase the risk of side effects.

We even recommend trying Adrafinil microdoses to start with. A microdose is a very small dose, usually around 25-50mg. This is a great way to test the waters and see if Adrafinil is right for you without risking any serious side effects.

Most users take it orally, but sublingual use is viable as well, since the drug is water-soluble. When taken sublingually on an empty stomach, it provides higher action and faster onset.


Adrafinil Review - The Verdict

Nootropics are drugs that can enhance cognitive abilities and help you achieve your goals.

Nootropics such as Adrafinil have been found to be safe for most people, but there is a small risk of side effects with larger doses or long-term use.

If you're looking for an alternative nootropic drug, Modafinil is a great choice that doesn't put stress on the liver and is more suitable for long-term usage.

Always consult with your health care provider before starting any new drug regimen.

Remember, use the coupon code MINTEGRITY for a discount on your Modafinil purchase! Thank you for reading, be safe.

Important note: this article may contain affiliate links, with that being said, our articles are always made with good faith and intentions.

This article is scientific research based, please contact us if you find any outdated information in one of our guides or articles.

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