Best Over The Counter Adderall Alternatives (Natural & Legal)

Updated on January 10, 2023
 by — reviewed by Jason Williams, PhD (Contributor: George Collins / Editor: Yoko Hill)

When looking for the best over-the-counter Adderall alternatives, you have many different options to choose from.

There are all sorts of legal, natural supplements that claim to work just as well as Adderall - but which one is right for you?

In this article, we'll look at some of the most popular legal Adderall alternatives and help you decide which one is right for you.

So if you're looking for a legal way to get an Adderall-like buzz without a prescription, you're in luck!

According to scientific evidence, studies, and customer reviews, the best non-prescription OTC Adderall alternatives are:

We have included various options here. From nootropic blends such as NooCube, Vyvamind, and Mind Lab Pro to more traditional cognition-enhancing ingredients like Caffeine and L-Tyrosine, there is an Adderall substitute here for everyone.

Let's take a closer look at each nootropic in more detail so that you can make an informed decision about which legal Adderall alternative is right for you.

Vyvamind: The Best Natural Adderall Substitute

over the counter adderall vyvamind

Vyvamind is an herbal nootropic supplement, or nootropic blend, that contains 6 natural brain-boosting ingredients that help to naturally balance neurotransmitters in the brain, which helps reduce the symptoms of ADHD.

The ingredients in Vyvamind promote a healthy nervous system and help to reduce stress.

The nootropic ingredients in Vyvamind are:

  • Vitamin B6 – 2.5 mg
  • Vitamin B12 – 50 mcg
  • L-Tyrosine – 300 mg
  • Citicoline – 200 mg
  • L-Theanine – 150 mg
  • Caffeine Anhydrous – 75 mg

Vyvamind is a natural alternative to Adderall, and it's made from herbs, so there is no chance of having any adverse side effects. It is one of the best natural alternatives to Adderall because it has similar benefits but without all the harmful side effects.

Pros

  • All-natural herbal ingredients to help you focus
  • Everyone can buy it (legal worldwide)
  • Very effective for ADHD
  • Promotes a healthy nervous system (CNS)
  • It helps to reduce stress

Cons

  • It might not be ideal for people on a budget

Mind Lab Pro: A Non-Prescription OTC Adderall Replacement

Mind Lab Pro is a great Adderall alternative that can help you concentrate, focus, and stay awake. It contains 11 all-natural and safe ingredients.

Mind Lab Pro Nootropic is a proprietary blend of vitamins, herbs, amino acids, and other nutrients. It is designed to help your body function at its best and enhance brain health.

There are several benefits to using the Mind Lab Pro supplement, including that it is made from all-natural ingredients and is safe and effective in boosting mood and focus.

Mind Lab Pro nootropic ingredients are:

  • Vitamin B6, 2,5 mg
  • Vitamin B9, 100 mcg
  • Vitamin B12, 7.5 mcg
  • L-theanine, 100 mg
  • Citicoline, 250 mg
  • Bacopa monnieri, 150 mg
  • Organic lion’s mane mushroom, 500 mg
  • Phosphatidylserine, 100 mg
  • N-acetyl L-tyrosine, 175 mg
  • Rhodiola Rosea, 50 mg
  • Maritime pine bark extract, 75 mg

It is free of toxins, heavy metals, and other harmful substances, making it a perfect choice for health-conscious students. In terms of side effects, some people may experience drowsiness due to the L-Theanine content.

over the counter adderall alternative mind lab pro

Pros

  • 11 all-natural ingredients that are safe for adults
  • It is made from herbal ingredients and is non-addictive
  • It is legal worldwide and can be bought without a prescription
  • It is an effective Adderall alternative to help with concentration,
  • It supports optimal brain function and health

Cons

  • Some people find it too pricey
  • Shipping times can be slow

NooCube: A Herbal Nootropic Supplement Similar to Adderall

NooCube is a supplement that is used to treat ADHD. It contains 13 science-backed ingredients clinically proven to support brain function and creativity.

The ingredients work synergistically, meaning they are more effective when taken together than individually.

This makes NooCube an ideal alternative to Adderall as it combines powerful nootropics clinically proven to increase focus, concentration, and energy levels.

otc adderall-like supplement noocube

The ingredients in NooCube are:

  • Lutemax® 2020
  • Bacopa Monnieri 12:1 (20% bacosides) 250 mg
  • Huperzia Serrata (0.5% huperzine-a) 20 mg
  • Pterostilbene 140 mcg
  • Resveratrol 99% 14.3 mg
  • L-Theanine 100 mg
  • L-Tyrosine 250 mg
  • Alpha GPC (Glycerylphosphorylcholine) 50 mg
  • Oat Straw Extract 10:1
  • Cat's Claw 4:1
  • Vitamin B1 1.1 mg
  • Vitamin B7 50 mcg
  • Vitamin B12 2.5 mcg

Pros

  • It contains 13 science-backed nootropic ingredients
  • It helps with focus, concentration, and energy levels
  • It is non-addictive and legal worldwide
  • Clinically proven to be effective
  • Great Adderall alternative for people with ADHD

Cons

  • One of the more expensive nootropic blends

Caffeine

Caffeine is one of the world's most popular and widely consumed psychoactive substances. It is found in coffee, tea, energy drinks, chocolate, and some medications.

Caffeine antagonizes all types of adenosine receptors, which causes various biological effects such as changes in sleep, cognition, learning, focus, and memory [1].

Additionally, Caffeine inhibits phosphodiesterases, promotes calcium release from intracellular stores, and interferes with GABA-A receptors. These actions ultimately affect brain function, leading to increased alertness and wakefulness.

over the counter adderall caffeine

This makes it a good substitute for those looking for an Adderall alternative but doesn't want to deal with the side effects of Adderall.

Pros

  • It is one of the most widely consumed psychoactive substances
  • It is found in natural sources and is easy to get
  • It antagonizes all types of adenosine receptors
  • It inhibits phosphodiesterases
  • It promotes calcium release from intracellular stores leading to increased alertness.

Cons

  • The balance between alertness and anxiety can be delicate

L-Theanine

L-Theanine is an amino acid found in green tea that has been shown to have various benefits, including reducing stress, anxiety, improving mood, cognition, and reducing ADHD symptoms.

A systematic review of human randomized controlled trials found that supplementation of 200-400 mg/day of L-Theanine assists in reducing stress and anxiety in people exposed to stressful conditions [2].

L-Theanine shines when it's combined, or stacked, with Caffeine. Caffeine acts as a CNS stimulant, while L-Theanine is a relaxant. This combination provides the perfect balance of energy and focus without the crash or jitters that can come with Caffeine alone.

A study published in 2008 found that when L-Theanine is combined with Caffeine, it leads to improved task performance and increased attention [3].

The aim of this study was to compare 50 mg of Caffeine, with and without 100 mg of L-Theanine, on cognition and mood in healthy volunteers.

The results showed that combining Caffeine and L-Theanine improved task performance, particularly on the attention-switching task.

Additionally, this combination appeared to reduce susceptibility to distracting information in the memory task, making this stack ideal for people looking for a legal and safe Adderall alternative.

Pros

  • It is a natural amino acid found in green tea
  • Easy to get your hands on
  • It has been shown to reduce stress and anxiety
  • It assists in reducing ADHD symptoms
  • It works wonders when stacked with Caffeine

Cons

  • It has to be stacked with Caffeine to reap all of its benefits

Citicoline

Citicoline (also known as CPD-choline and cytidine-phosphocholine) is an all-natural alternative to Adderall.

Research shows it works by increasing acetylcholine levels (ACh), a neurotransmitter responsible for memory and learning [4].

Acetylcholine levels have been shown to be lower in people with ADHD [5].

Pros

  • It is an all-natural alternative to Adderall
  • It has been shown to increase acetylcholine levels
  • Acetylcholine levels are lower in people with ADHD

Cons

  • Important to pick a quality product as some brands don't use the best sources of choline

L-Tyrosine

L-Tyrosine is an amino acid that is found in many different foods. It makes proteins and can be found in meat, milk, and eggs. L-Tyrosine has also been used to help treat several medical conditions such as depression, anxiety, and ADHD [6].

L-Tyrosine works by increasing the levels of dopamine and norepinephrine in the brain. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter responsible for regulating mood, movement, and pleasure. Norepinephrine is a neurotransmitter that helps regulate the body's response to stress.

L-Tyrosine is a good alternative to Adderall because it does not have the same side effects as Adderall. It is also a safe and natural supplement that can be taken without a prescription.

Pros

  • It is a safe and natural supplement
  • It does not have the same side effects as Adderall
  • It can be taken without a prescription

Cons

  • Difficult to get enough Tyrosine from the diet alone

Maritime Pine Bark Extract

Maritime Pine Bark Extract is a natural supplement made from the bark of the maritime pine tree. The extract is rich in proanthocyanidins, a type of flavonoid believed to be responsible for many of the extract's beneficial effects.

Studies have shown that Maritime Pine Bark Extract can improve cognitive function, memory and can be useful for ADHD [7]. The extract is also a powerful antioxidant and can help protect the brain from damage caused by free radicals.

Most importantly, Maritime Pine Bark Extract does not have the same side effects as Adderall. It is non-addictive and does not cause jitters or anxiety. It is a safe and natural alternative to Adderall for people who want to improve their cognitive function without risking their health long-term.

Pros

  • It is a safe and natural alternative to Adderall
  • It can improve cognitive function and memory
  • Maritime Pine Bark Extract reduces ADHD symptoms

Cons

  • It can be hard to find in stores

Ginkgo Biloba

Ginkgo Biloba is an herbal supplement used for centuries in traditional Chinese medicine. It improves blood circulation and protects the brain from damage. Ginkgo Biloba is sometimes used as an alternative to Adderall for ADHD.

There is some evidence that Ginkgo Biloba is helpful for ADHD. A small study found that children who took Ginkgo Biloba had better attention and motor skills than those who did not take the supplement [8]. Another study found that Ginkgo Biloba had protective effects on the brain and may be helpful for preventing ADHD symptoms [9].

over the counter adderall alternative ginkgo biloba

Ginkgo Biloba appears to work by increasing cerebral blood flow (CBF) [10]. This may help improve attention and focus. The herb also contains antioxidants that may protect the brain from damage.

Ginkgo Biloba is a safe and natural alternative to Adderall and may help improve attention and focus in people with ADHD.

Pros

  • It is a safe and natural alternative to Adderall
  • It may help improve attention and focus
  • Ginkgo Biloba has protective effects on the brain

Cons

  • High-quality studies are limited
  • It can take several weeks to notice the effects

Bacopa Monnieri

If you're looking for an alternative to Adderall, you should consider the all-natural Bacopa Monnieri herb. This herb has been used for thousands of years in Ayurvedic medicine to treat various ailments, including depression, anxiety, and insomnia.

The active ingredient in Bacopa Monnieri is called Bacosides. These are a group of plant-based chemicals similar to the neurotransmitter dopamine. They help increase the brain's ability to concentrate, focus and learn.

Bacopa Monnieri has been shown to inhibit inflammatory pathways in the brain [11] and improve cognitive function and memory in healthy adults, making it a promising option for those seeking an Adderall alternative.

A study also looked at its efficacy in alleviating the symptoms of ADHD in children and found that it significantly reduced hyperactivity [12].

Pros

  • Solid evidence to support its efficacy
  • It is a safe and natural alternative to Adderall
  • It helps improve attention, focus, and memory
  • It's an adaptogen, meaning it helps the body cope with stress

Cons

  • It can take several weeks to notice the effects
  • It can be hard to find in local stores

Rhodiola Rosea

Rhodiola Rosea is a perennial plant that grows in cold climates and is native to North America, Europe, and Asia. The plant has been used for centuries in traditional medicine to treat various ailments, including fatigue, depression, and anxiety.

More recently, Rhodiola Rosea has been studied as an alternative to Adderall for treating ADHD.

One study showed that Rhodiola Rosea improved physical and mental performance, including working memory, attention span, focus, and reduced mental fatigue [13].

Another study showed that Rhodiola Rosea enhanced the treatment response in those with ADHD [14].

Pros

  • An adaptogen that helps the body cope with stress
  • It is a safe and natural alternative to Adderall
  • It helps improve mental performance, including attention span and focus
  • Reduces mental fatigue and ADHD symptoms

Cons

  • High-quality studies are limited
  • It can be hard to find in local stores

Conclusion: The Best Over-the-Counter Adderall Substitute for ADHD

Many safe and natural Adderall alternatives available can provide similar benefits without the risk of side effects. If you're looking for an alternative to Adderall, consider trying one of the herbs or supplements listed above.

Vyvamind, NooCube, or Mind Lab Pro are good places to start. These nootropic blends give you everything you need to support optimal cognitive function and memory without any of the risks associated with Adderall.

The ingredients are all backed by science, and the products are manufactured in FDA-registered, GMP-certified facilities.

References

References
1Ribeiro, Joaquim A, and Ana M Sebastião. “Caffeine and adenosine.” Journal of Alzheimer's disease : JAD vol. 20 Suppl 1 (2010): S3-15. doi:10.3233/JAD-2010-1379
2Williams, Jackson L et al. “The Effects of Green Tea Amino Acid L-Theanine Consumption on the Ability to Manage Stress and Anxiety Levels: a Systematic Review.” Plant foods for human nutrition (Dordrecht, Netherlands) vol. 75,1 (2020): 12-23. doi:10.1007/s11130-019-00771-5
3Owen, Gail N et al. “The combined effects of L-theanine and caffeine on cognitive performance and mood.” Nutritional neuroscience vol. 11,4 (2008): 193-8. doi:10.1179/147683008X301513
4Synoradzki, Kamil, and Paweł Grieb. “Citicoline: A Superior Form of Choline?.” Nutrients vol. 11,7 1569. 12 Jul. 2019, doi:10.3390/nu11071569
5ScienceDaily. (2011, December 6). New biochemical changes found in children with ADHD. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 13, 2022, from https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/12/111205102305.htm
6Hinz, Marty et al. “Treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder with monoamine amino acid precursors and organic cation transporter assay interpretation.” Neuropsychiatric disease and treatment vol. 7 31-8. 26 Jan. 2011, doi:10.2147/NDT.S16270
7Trebatická, Jana et al. “Treatment of ADHD with French maritime pine bark extract, Pycnogenol.” European child & adolescent psychiatry vol. 15,6 (2006): 329-35. doi:10.1007/s00787-006-0538-3
8Shakibaei, Fereshteh et al. “Ginkgo biloba in the treatment of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder in children and adolescents. A randomized, placebo-controlled, trial.” Complementary therapies in clinical practice vol. 21,2 (2015): 61-7. doi:10.1016/j.ctcp.2015.04.001
9Sharma, Garima et al. “Protective Potential of Ginkgo biloba Against an ADHD-like Condition.” Current molecular pharmacology vol. 14,2 (2021): 200-209. doi:10.2174/1874467213666200424152454
10Mashayekh, Ameneh et al. “Effects of Ginkgo biloba on cerebral blood flow assessed by quantitative MR perfusion imaging: a pilot study.” Neuroradiology vol. 53,3 (2011): 185-91. doi:10.1007/s00234-010-0790-6
11Nemetchek, Michelle D et al. “The Ayurvedic plant Bacopa monnieri inhibits inflammatory pathways in the brain.” Journal of ethnopharmacology vol. 197 (2017): 92-100. doi:10.1016/j.jep.2016.07.073
12Dave, Usha Pinakin et al. “An open-label study to elucidate the effects of standardized Bacopa monnieri extract in the management of symptoms of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder in children.” Advances in mind-body medicine vol. 28,2 (2014): 10-5.
13Ishaque, Sana et al. “Rhodiola rosea for physical and mental fatigue: a systematic review.” BMC complementary and alternative medicine vol. 12 70. 29 May. 2012, doi:10.1186/1472-6882-12-70
14Sharma, Anup et al. “Non-Pharmacological Treatments for ADHD in Youth.” Adolescent psychiatry (Hilversum, Netherlands) vol. 5,2 (2015): 84-95. doi:10.2174/221067660502150430154937
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