Citicoline (Cognizin): Review of Nootropic Benefits & Uses

Updated on March 11, 2024
 by — reviewed by Jason Williams, PhD (Contributor: George Collins / Editor: Yoko Hill)
Overview of Citicoline (Cognizin) nootropic benefits and uses.

In this Citicoline review, we will take a look at the branded form of Citicoline, Cognizin. We will look at what benefits it can provide, dosage, and potential side effects.

Feeling like you could use a mental pick-me-up?

Cognizin is a brain booster that can help increase focus and energy. It’s all-natural, vegetarian, and free from allergens – making it the perfect choice for those with dietary restrictions.

With Cognizin, you can feel confident that you’re providing your brain with the best possible nourishment to stay sharp and focused throughout the day. And because it comes in a convenient pill form, it’s easy to take wherever you go.

Let’s take a closer look at what Cognizin can do for you.

Citicoline Review Summary

Citicoline is a precursor in the synthesis of phosphatidylcholine (PC). It is a powerful and effective nootropic with a wide variety of potential benefits for cognitive function, brain health, and overall well-being. It may also help to protect the brain from age-related damage and improve recovery from stroke or other forms of brain injury. Studies show that citicoline is safe and well-tolerated, with few reported side effects in the subjects.

If you are looking for a nootropic to help improve your cognitive performance, Citicoline is definitely worth considering.


  • Improves learning, memory, and the ability to process information
  • Helps people with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease
  • Helps with recovery in stroke patients


  • Citicoline provides less choline per serving compared to Alpha-GPC

What Is Citicoline?

Citicoline, also known as cytidine diphosphate-choline (CDP-Choline), is an essential intermediate in synthesizing phospholipids, which are major structural components of cell membranes (1).

Evidence shows that citicoline supplementation increases levels of brain chemical messengers involved in learning and memory (such as acetylcholine and dopamine), which help to support cognitive function (2).

Citicoline also helps protect brain cells from damage, and cognitive impairment, by increasing levels of a substance called cerebroside, a major component of the myelin sheath that insulates nerve cells (3).

In addition, citicoline supplementation has been shown to increase cerebral blood flow to the brain which is useful in the treatment of conditions like Alzheimer’s disease, and vascular dementia (4).

Cognizin is a highly crystalline form of citicoline which ranges from 10% to 12% water by weight. Conventional citicoline is no more than 5% water by weight and is therefore highly susceptible to humidity, unlike Cognizin.

Cognizin was designed to help you stay focused and engaged and boost brain power all in one easy dietary supplement. Tested for efficiency, Cognizin is a brand of citicoline which enhances communication between neurons, protects neural structures, and supports overall brain health and energy.

It provides vital nutrients to help the brain generate electrical impulses and care for healthy brain cells. It also helps to maintain normal levels of acetylcholine which regulates cognitive function, and it also supports the healthy mitochondria activity, which is required for mental alertness.

The development and use of the branded supplement have improved how people can optimize their focus levels.

How Does Citicoline (Cognizin) Work In The Brain?

Citicoline works by increasing levels of two important neurotransmitters, acetylcholine (ACh) and dopamine.

Acetylcholine is a neurotransmitter that plays an important role in memory, learning, and other cognitive processes. Citicoline supplementation increases levels of acetylcholine by inhibiting its breakdown (5).

According to one study published in 2014, Citicoline was shown to increase norepinephrine in the cerebral cortex and hypothalamus as well as dopamine in the corpus striatum (6).

This mechanism of action is important because it suggests that citicoline could be effective in the treatment of conditions like attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and addiction.

In terms of nootropic benefits, citicoline has been shown to improve attention span, task flexibility, working memory, and verbal learning (7).

When you take the branded supplement Cognizin, you can trust that you’re getting an optimal dose of citicoline to maximize the nootropic benefits discussed above.

What Is Citicoline (Cognizin) Used For?

Citicoline is used for a variety of purposes, both cognitive and non-cognitive. Let’s take a closer look at some of the most common uses of Citicoline below:

Ischemic Stroke

Ischemic stroke is the most common type of stroke and occurs when blood flow to the brain is blocked. One study from 2009 showed that Citicoline supplementation improved neurological, functional and global outcomes in patients with acute ischemic stroke without significant safety concerns (8).


Citicoline has also been shown to be effective in treating age-related vision loss, particularly glaucoma. Glaucoma is a condition in which the optic nerve is damaged, typically as a result of high intraocular pressure.

A recent study from 2021 showed that citicoline supplementation was a valuable addition to conventional treatment of Primary open angle glaucoma (POAG) (9).

Neuroprotective Effects

Citicoline has neuroprotective effects and has been shown to be effective in treating certain neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and Huntington’s disease.

A recent randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial from 2021 showed that Citicoline (Cognizin) supplementation had beneficial effects on memory function and behavior in populations with a wide range of impairments (10).

Neuronal Membrane Repair

Citicoline also has the ability to repair neuronal membranes. A recent study from 2015 showed that Citicoline supplementation could help improve symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease by repairing neuronal membranes (11).


Citicoline has also been shown to improve the survival of vascular endothelial cells and promote angiogenesis (12). Angiogenesis is the process by which new blood vessels are formed. This can lead to improved blood flow and oxygenation to the brain, which can be beneficial for cognitive function.

Glutamate Transport

Citicoline has also been shown to be beneficial in various CNS injury models by upregulating glutamate transport (13).

When the brain is injured, there is an increase in glutamate levels which can lead to further damage. Citicoline has been shown to help reduce glutamate levels and improve outcomes in various CNS injury models.

What Are The Benefits Of Citicoline (Cognizin) For Cognition?

The benefits of using Citicoline (Cognizin) for cognition are numerous. Citicoline has been shown to improve cognitive function in healthy adults and those with cognitive impairments.

Citicoline has also been shown to be effective in treating certain neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and Huntington’s disease. Citicoline also has neuroprotective effects and can help to repair neuronal membranes.

In addition, Citicoline has been shown to improve the survival of vascular endothelial cells and promote angiogenesis.

Benefits of Citicoline (Cognizin) For Cognition:

  • Helps to improve cognitive function in healthy adults and those with cognitive impairments
  • Can help to treat certain neurodegenerative disorders
  • Neuroprotective effects
  • Can help to repair neuronal membranes
  • Improves the survival of vascular endothelial cells and promotes angiogenesis
  • A great supplementation for general cognitive enhancement

Where To Buy Citicoline (Cognizin) Online?

We recommend buying Citicoline (Cognizin) from Pure Nootropics. They offer high-quality nootropics at reasonable prices.

You can buy Citicoline (Cognizin) here:

What Do People Say About Citicoline (Cognizin) On Reddit?

Here are some references and reviews of Citicoline from users and contributors on Reddit.

According to ‘okatjapanese’:

‘Have used it for several months and I definitely notice improved cognition. I remember things easier and can put together concepts to make quick decisions. It’s all quite great.’

According to ‘Got4ofem’:

‘I took a 2.4 Gram dosage [of citicoline], along with 2.85Grams of Piracetam and 2.8 Grams of Sulbutiamine, and I have to say… I WAS ON FIRE ALL DAY LONG. I mean, wow, how do I explain it… I was really REALLY REALLY REALLY sharp all day long.’

According to ‘aeramor’:

‘Like others, I’ve been taking the Jarrow Formulas Citicoline. 120tabs are reasonably priced and come in 250mg. So far it’s my fav choline source (above Alpha GPC which I felt like I still needed to take more of to get the same effect)’

How Do You Take Citicoline (Cognizin) For Cognitive Enhancement?

You can take Citicoline (Cognizin) with or without food. Most people split their dosage into two doses per day and take one early in the day and one later in the day. It’s recommended to take Citicoline (Cognizin) daily for best results. There is no need to cycle Citicoline (Cognizin).

That being said, some people prefer to cycle their nootropics. This means that they take them for a certain period (usually 4-8 weeks) and then take a break for a similar period to prevent tolerance.

Cognizin is found in the form of a capsule as well as in complex and single-ingredient supplements. Typically, doses around 250-500mg of Cognizin have been studied in clinical trials (14), and a dosage between these two numbers is said to be effective at boosting brain power whilst also being safe and well-tolerated by most users.

A higher dosage of around 500-2000 mg of citicoline is recommended for serious cases of cognitive decline.

What Are The Side Effects Of Citicoline (Cognizin)?

Citicoline Cognizin has been clinically tested with enough data to suggest that the side effects are almost non-existent. However, as with all supplements, there is always a small chance that you may experience an adverse reaction.

The most common side effects reported with Citicoline (Cognizin) are:

  • Headaches
  • Insomnia
  • Restlessness
  • Gastrointestinal Ailments

What Nootropics Are Similar To Citicoline (Cognizin)?

Nootropics similar to Citicoline (Cognizin) include:

Alpha GPC – Alpha GPC is a choline-containing compound that is structurally similar to citicoline. Both nootropics are effective at boosting cognitive function and memory. However, citicoline is more well-rounded and has additional benefits for the brain, such as reducing cognitive decline and improving brain health.

Centrophenoxine – Centrophenoxine is another choline-containing compound that is often compared to citicoline. Both nootropics are effective at boosting cognitive function, memory, and focus. However, centrophenoxine is more potent and has been shown to be more effective at reducing cognitive decline.

What Brain Supplements Can Citicoline (Cognizin) Be Stacked With?

Citicoline (Cognizin) can be stacked with other nootropics for increased cognitive benefits. It works well with other cholinergic nootropics, such as Alpha GPC and Centrophenoxine, as well as different racetams, such as Piracetam and Aniracetam.

If you’re looking for a nootropic blend that contains a potent choline source, vitamins, and other effective nootropics, we recommend NooCube. NooCube is a potent cognitive enhancer with different nootropic ingredients that all work together to boost cognitive function, memory, and focus.

Plus, NooCube contains Alpha GPC, which is a choline-containing compound that works well with Citicoline to enhance its effects. This is an all-in-one nootropic supplement that will help you reach your cognitive potential.

You can find NooCube right here:

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Here, we have compiled a list of the most frequently asked questions regarding Citicoline (Cognizin).

How Long Does It Take For Citicoline (Cognizin) To Work?

Citicoline (Cognizin) works relatively quickly, with most users reporting effects within the first hour of taking it. However, it can take up to 2 weeks of regular use before you experience the full cognitive benefits of Citicoline (Cognizin).

How Does Citicoline (Cognizin) Make You Feel?

Citicoline (Cognizin) makes you feel more alert and clear-headed. It also provides a gentle boost in energy levels, which can help you power through your day.

What’s The Half-Life Of Citicoline (Cognizin)?

The half-life of Citicoline (Cognizin) is 55-75 hours (3 days). This means that it lasts in the body for a long time, and you don’t need to take it multiple times throughout the day to experience its effects.

Is It Safe To Use Citicoline (Cognizin)?

Citicoline (Cognizin) is a safe and well-tolerated nootropic supplement. Only a few side effects have been reported, and they are usually mild and temporary (such as headaches).


Citicoline (Cognizin) is a potent and well-rounded nootropic supplement that can help boost cognitive function, memory, focus, and brain health. It’s one of the most effective nootropics on the market and has few side effects.

It works by increasing levels of acetylcholine (ACh), which is a neurotransmitter that plays a key role in cognitive function. Citicoline (Cognizin) also helps to protect the brain from damage and improve brain health.

If you’re looking for a nootropic that can help you reach your cognitive potential, we recommend Citicoline (Cognizin). It’s a safe and effective nootropic that can help you achieve your cognitive goals.

Sources, Studies, and Scientific Research
  1. Adibhatla, R M et al. “Effects of citicoline on phospholipid and glutathione levels in transient cerebral ischemia.” Stroke vol. 32,10 (2001): 2376-81. doi:10.1161/hs1001.096010 ↩
  2. Synoradzki, Kamil, and Paweł Grieb. “Citicoline: A Superior Form of Choline?.” Nutrients vol. 11,7 1569. 12 Jul. 2019, doi:10.3390/nu11071569 ↩
  3. Gareri, Pietro et al. “The role of citicoline in cognitive impairment: pharmacological characteristics, possible advantages, and doubts for an old drug with new perspectives.” Clinical interventions in aging vol. 10 1421-9. 3 Sep. 2015, doi:10.2147/CIA.S87886 ↩
  4. Alvarez, X A et al. “Double-blind placebo-controlled study with citicoline in APOE genotyped Alzheimer’s disease patients. Effects on cognitive performance, brain bioelectrical activity and cerebral perfusion.” Methods and findings in experimental and clinical pharmacology vol. 21,9 (1999): 633-44. ↩
  5. Jasielski, Patryk et al. “Application of Citicoline in Neurological Disorders: A Systematic Review.” Nutrients vol. 12,10 3113. 12 Oct. 2020, doi:10.3390/nu12103113 ↩
  6. Wignall, Nicholas D, and E Sherwood Brown. “Citicoline in addictive disorders: a review of the literature.” The American journal of drug and alcohol abuse vol. 40,4 (2014): 262-8. doi:10.3109/00952990.2014.925467 ↩
  7. Spiers, P A et al. “Citicoline improves verbal memory in aging.” Archives of neurology vol. 53,5 (1996): 441-8. doi:10.1001/archneur.1996.00550050071026 ↩
  8. Cho, H-J, and Y J Kim. “Efficacy and safety of oral citicoline in acute ischemic stroke: drug surveillance study in 4,191 cases.” Methods and findings in experimental and clinical pharmacology vol. 31,3 (2009): 171-6. doi:10.1358/mf.2009.31.3.1364241 ↩
  9. Jünemann, Anselm G M et al. “Bedeutung von Citicolin bei der Glaukomerkrankung” [The role of citicoline in glaucoma]. Der Ophthalmologe : Zeitschrift der Deutschen Ophthalmologischen Gesellschaft vol. 118,5 (2021): 439-448. doi:10.1007/s00347-021-01362-z ↩
  10. Nakazaki, Eri et al. “Citicoline and Memory Function in Healthy Older Adults: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Clinical Trial.” The Journal of nutrition vol. 151,8 (2021): 2153-2160. doi:10.1093/jn/nxab119 ↩
  11. Alvarez-Sabín, José, and Gustavo C Román. “The role of citicoline in neuroprotection and neurorepair in ischemic stroke.” Brain sciences vol. 3,3 1395-414. 23 Sep. 2013, doi:10.3390/brainsci3031395 ↩
  12. Krupinski, Jerzy et al. “Citicoline induces angiogenesis improving survival of vascular/human brain microvessel endothelial cells through pathways involving ERK1/2 and insulin receptor substrate-1.” Vascular cell vol. 4,1 20. 10 Dec. 2012, doi:10.1186/2045-824X-4-20 ↩
  13. Hurtado, Olivia et al. “Neuroprotection afforded by prior citicoline administration in experimental brain ischemia: effects on glutamate transport.” Neurobiology of disease vol. 18,2 (2005): 336-45. doi:10.1016/j.nbd.2004.10.006 ↩
  14. Cognizin Citicoline dosing in a healthy adolescent male population – full text view. Full Text View – (n.d.). Retrieved July 24, 2022, from ↩