The Long-Term Benefits Of Using N-Acetyl Cysteine

What Is N-Acetyl-Cysteine?

N-Acetyl-Cysteine is a popular choice as a nootropic supplement for those who wish to improve cognitive function. This nootropic offers an extensive range of alternate uses which is part of the reason why it has become so highly valued by users. Here is more in-depth information about the benefits, risks and what is currently known about this supplement.

N-Acetyl Cysteine is also known as NAC is a derivative of the amino acid L-Cysteine. It has the capacity to increase metabolism and boost the levels of dopamine in the brain. It further improves the body’s ability to produce glutathione which gives it powerful antioxidant properties for reducing free radicals and their potential for cellular damage.

When used as a nootropic supplement, NAC regulates glutamate and dopamine levels with the effect of enhancing mental energy, providing greater attention control and for controlling thoughts and compulsive behaviors.


NAC has been in use for decades as an antidote for heavy metal poisoning and toxicity from acetaminophen. It has a host of other clinical uses including support for fighting infections, such as HIV and for increasing dopamine for enhanced mental focus and control of attention. This makes it useful as a supplement for the treatment of ADHD and other behavioral disorders. It is also widely used in the treatment of Schizophrenia and Bipolar Disorder. It is also effective for controlling the symptoms of anxiety and depression. NAC is used to treat a variety of conditions involving cognitive disruption or deficits.

This multifaceted supplement also possesses anti-inflammatory properties and is useful for reducing inflammation associated with arthritis, bursitis, from injury, illness and more.

Because of its antioxidant properties, NAC is used as an anti-aging supplement, for promotion of cardiovascular health, for boosting immune function and for detoxification purposes. It is often combined in a stacking regimen with other cognitive enhancers such as racetams and choline.

Recommended Dosage

The recommended dosages of N-Acetyl-Cysteine may vary depending upon the application for which it is used. The general range is between 200 and 1500 mg per day and it may be taken in one, two or three equal divisions. It is best to start out with the lowest dose to find out how your body will react to it. Once you know how it will affect you, the dosages may be gradually increased until you either achieve the desired effects or until the maximum advised amount is reached. The average dosage when used as a nootropic to increase focus, motivation and concentration is a dosage of 600 mg twice a day for healthy adults. N-Acetyl Cysteine benefits typically kick in around an hour after ingesting the supplement.

If NAC is used for the treatment of physical conditions, such as asthma, the dosage of 200 mg per day is advised. As with any supplement, it is wise to consult with a trusted health care provider in advance of starting your regimen.

Side Effects

NAC is a supplement containing compounds which are produced naturally by the body, but with more powerful effects upon the systems involved. This particular supplement may produce gastrointestinal side effects which can include either diarrhea or constipation, nausea, and vomiting. They may not present in all users but have the potential for becoming strong for others. These are generally the result of toxicities in the system which are being treated. Starting with a lower dose may help in avoiding these potential side effects with gradual increases dependent on how well the body tolerates them.

There are drug interaction precautions which need to be taken with NAC. Anyone who is using ACE inhibitors, antihypertensive drugs, activated charcoal, anticoagulants, nitroglycerin or Aralen should not use it. This warning extends to other supplements which contain antiplatelet or hypotensive properties.

Blood flow is increased with the use of NAC because it dilates blood vessels. If you are using any type of blood thinners or medications used to control blood pressure, you should avoid the use of this supplement. There may also be health risks if you are taking any strong stimulants which are intended to alter dopamine levels such as Cylert, Adderall, and other drugs of this nature which are often prescribed in the treatment of ADHD and related disorders. The combination may result in a fast heartbeat or respiratory issues. For the majority of people in good health, however; side effects are usually mild and short in duration if they present at all. One of the main N-Acetyl Cysteine benefits is the fact that is near entirely devoid of excess side effects.

Long-Term Use

Extended use of NAC holds indications for increased health benefits because of the antioxidant effects which help to arrest free radicals and protect the body from damage at a cellular level. This also serves as an immune boosting agent with detoxification properties that greatly improve heart, liver and brain health. The nootropic effects are a reduction in anxiety and for many, irritability.

Short-Term Use

In the short term, NAC provides nootropic effects which positively affect brain function and cognition. Stress and anxiety responses are lessened with an increase in focus, mental processing ability, and control over thoughts and impulse reactions.

Legal Status

NAC is legal for purchase and personal use in the United States. As with any supplement that positively impacts physical health and performance, it is important for competitive athletes to check on the regulations and frequently changing supplement identification of the list of banned items for the prevention of doping.

Final Thoughts

NAC is a powerful nootropic supplement that is derived from compounds which occur naturally in the body. They are modified to make them more effective for achieving heightened results in cognitive function, mental ability and a host of health-related functions. The list of uses for this versatile supplement range from clinical treatment of serious health conditions to simple enhancement of cognitive function and boosting the immune system and even possibly improving longevity. Care must be taken when stacking NAC with other supplements and in use with prescription medications to ensure that there are no indications of drug interaction present. For the majority of healthy people, NAC may offer health benefits which manifest both immediately and more intensive health improvements in prolonged and regular regimens.

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