Microdosing: How you can increase your cognitive performance with nicotine

Microdosing: How you can increase your cognitive performance with nicotine

Read this article if you want to learn more about microdosing and find out how you can increase your performance and work more productively by consuming a small amount of nicotine.

The microdosing trend comes from California's Silicon Valley, from which experts from the tech industry in particular expect more performance. In Germany, too, microdosing is attracting more attention to self-optimization. But what exactly is it and what is it? What are the risks? In this article we focus on microdosing with nicotine and the alternative and more common variant with caffeine.


Microdosing: what is it?

Microdosing means taking in a very low dose. The application is mostly with psychedelic substances, like the banned drug LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide) or mushrooms containing psilocybin. With microdosing, however, it is not about creating the psychedelic effects that come about through a so-called trip. Rather, it has the purpose to improve performance, for example to work more productively and creatively. This is also possible with legal substances like nicotine. In general, microdosing is scientifically largely unexplored.


Effect: what does microdosing do?

Microdosing can have a positive effect on your cognitive performance and promotes the improvement of:

  • Attention
  • Thinking power / freer thinking
  • Memory performance
  • Fokus
  • Focus
  • creativity
  • Productivity
  • self-confidence
  • Confidence


What is nicotine?

Nicotine is the main active ingredient of the tobacco plant and a neurotoxin that serves as a defense mechanism to protect itself from pests. Nicotine is bitter and poisonous and is produced by many plants and stored in the leaves. The poison is more harmful to animals, but humans can endure a lot of it and even take advantage of it. At 7-10 seconds, the active ingredient is one of the fastest-acting substances that reach the brain.

Most people associate nicotine with tobacco, but it can also be found in small amounts in other nightshade plants, such as tomatoes, potatoes, eggplants, and even a little in cauliflower. The associations to nicotine with cigarettes, cancer, stink, harmful, etc. are very negative. Nevertheless, nicotine is not the same as tobacco and therefore not the same as cigarette. There are over 7000 different substances in a cigarette. Including chemicals and cancer-causing toxins, nicotine is one of the active ingredients that can be addictive and addictive.

Nicotine can be stimulating and performance-enhancing as well as calming and relaxing. Small amounts of the substance activate the nervous system, while higher amounts block certain nervous processes. The ultimate effect of nicotine is not only subjective but also depends on the situation.

If you are currently at work and have a stressful situation, the cigarette during your 5 minute break can be perceived as calming. If you are rather tired and exhausted, the nicotine may have an invigorating effect on you.


How does nicotine work in the body?

If you add nicotine to your body, your heart begins to beat faster, your blood pressure rises and your feeling of hunger is suppressed. The heart and circulation are more stressed in the long term because your body needs more oxygen. Furthermore, your skin is poorly supplied with blood and your temperature drops, which is why smokers tend to freeze faster. High levels of nicotine can lead to symptoms of intoxication, such as

  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • cold sweat

When nicotine arrives in your brain, it binds to nicotine receptors and activates pathways that are responsible for controlling attention, memory, motor skills and pleasure. The nicotine binds to different types of nicotine receptors and each receptor affects the brain in a very specific way.


Microdosing with nicotine

If you consume nicotine in small amounts, you can get some benefits from it to increase your productivity by improving the

  • Appetite suppression combined with caffeine
  • Attention
  • Focus
  • motor skills
  • Responsiveness




Microdosing: How to take nicotine

There are a number of ways you can consume nicotine for microdosing. The best are:

  • Nicotine inhaler
  • Nicotine chewing gum
  • Nicotine lozenges
  • Nicotine mouth spray
  • Nicotine patch

Studies have shown that people who take nicotine patches.1 2 or nicotine gum3 used, focused, and alert on mentally strenuous tasks. Nicotine can also sharpen short-term memory.4 The problem with nicotine gum and nicotine lozenges is that most of them contain chemicals, aspartame, and other artificial sweeteners.


Dosage with nicotine

As is known, the dose makes the poison. This also applies to nicotine. When approaching microdosing with nicotine, it is important that you work with the smallest possible dose.

Start with 1 mg and if you don't notice any effect increase the dose to 1,5 mg or 2 mg. It is best to do microdosing with nicotine really only for a short time and occasionally if necessary, a maximum of 2-3 times a week.


Disadvantages: What you have to consider when microdosing nicotine

Nicotine is highly addictive because it activates the positive reward system in the brain, the mesolimbic dopamine system.

In a study with a 21 mg nicotine patch, participants were found to have increased heart rate and increased blood pressure.5 It also works by inhibiting the anti-inflammatory protein interleukin-10, which increases inflammation.6

Due to the stimulating effect on the Neurotransmitters, nicotine can also disturb your sleep, which is why you should not take any more nicotine until two hours before going to bed.

Nicotine is poison in a high dose and should therefore be kept away from children and pets in the household.


Microdosing with caffeine

You are probably familiar with the stimulating effects of caffeine. With the right dose, you can also increase your performance with caffeine and, for example, work more concentrated. Caffeine is best known in the form of:

  • Energy drinks
  • Coffee
  • Caffeine
  • Tea

Caffeine has an impact on your body as well as your brain. Most people use it in the morning and noon to get an energy boost. To what extent caffeine works for you is difficult to say, because the substance works individually and the tolerance can be just as different. Here, too, excessive consumption is not advisable as it could make you restless and shaky. If you don't want to have problems with sleep disorders, you should also avoid consuming caffeine in the evening.

If you want to use caffeine to learn more productively, you can take it right before your study session. The effect occurs after about 10-15 minutes and you will be able to concentrate better.

If you want to know more about this, you can read our comprehensive article here Caffeine read.



You don't want to be concerned with nicotine, but still want to achieve more focus and concentration in order to perform better in everyday life and at work? Then test now SHARP MIND with vitamin B5 to support attention and memory as well as vitamin B12, which works against tiredness and fatigue.



By microdosing with nicotine you can get some positive advantages from your cognitive performance. So you can use it before an important presentation or when you have a lot to do and need a sharp focus. If you want to try microdosing, be careful with handling and remember that nicotine is a poison and this is about a very low dose that is yours Increase concentration and should encourage attention. Otherwise, an overdose of nicotine could lead to nausea and vomiting, for example. No matter which shape you use when trying it out, you should definitely keep your fingers off the cigarette stem.

You want to increase your productivity and alertness, but nicotine is absolutely out of the question for you? Then caffeine is a good alternative to nicotine to benefit from more concentration and focus.



¹Pantothenic acid contributes to normal mental performance. Vitamin B12 helps reduce tiredness and fatigue.


[1] https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s002130050857

[2] https://academic.oup.com/ntr/article-abstract/4/2/185/1013235

[3] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2498936

[4] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9888618

[5] https://ascpt.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1067/mcp.2000.108851

[6] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8930570

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