Alpha-GPC (alpha-glycerophosphocholine) is a popular ingredient that can be used on its own or combined with other ingredients. It’s main uses are in the nootropics and more recently bodybuilding industry.
It’s a choline compound that occurs naturally in the body in small amounts.
The body can also obtain extra Alpha-GPC from certain foods including beef liver, dairy products, and wheat germ; though the amount provided is negligible and cannot hold a candle to the dose provided by any of the best nootropic supplements.
The Alpha-GPC used in some of the best diet supplements on the market normally obtained from purified soy lecithin.
In the USA, Alpha-GPC is only used as a supplement ingredient and, more often than not, it’s primarily used as a memory enhancer, but can also be good for improving thinking skills and enhancing learning ability.
In Europe, the compound’s abilities seem to be taken more seriously because it’s used as a prescription medication for treating Alzheimer’s disease.
Alpha-GPC is also used during the aftermath of strokes and as a treatment for dementia and, although it’s often administered to patients orally, it’s sometimes provided via injection instead.
Alpha-GPC in Action
Alpha-GPC is the most efficient choline-providing ingredient available and is one of only two choline-delivery agents that is capable of making a successful transference from the blood to the brain.
It has extremely good bioavailability.
So once it’s in the stomach it’s absorbed quickly, is picked up by the blood, and successfully crosses the blood-brain barrier soon after ingestion.
Most users are likely to feel the benefits in less than an hour.
Choline is a precursor of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, which is known to be vitally important for a number of cognitive functions including learning ability, memory formation and recall, and concentration and focus.
By elevating choline levels in the way that it does, Alpha-GPC stimulates an increased production of acetylcholine and cognitive function is improved.
Although scientists are still struggling to understand many of the other ways Alpha-GPC boosts mental function, it’s believed to be capable of improving synaptic signalling and may also have neuroprotective abilities.
Why Alpha-GPC Is Better than Other Choline-Proving Ingredients
Apart from the fact that it is absorbed more quickly than some of the other options available, Alpha-GPC provides a greater percentage of choline per mg than any other choline-providing ingredient.
It’s more potent. It’s as simple as that.
The ingredient has also been shown to potentiate the effects of rivastigmine (acetylcholinesterase inhibitor) in a dose-dependent fashion whereas other choline-providers proved to be ineffective.
Alpha-GPC and Human Growth Hormone Production (HGH)
Apart from the direct benefits Alpha-GPC offers as a nootropic ingredient, it also has the ability to support improved mental health in an indirect way.
Researchers have discovered Alpha-GPC has the ability to boost HGH.
This can only be seen as a good thing because HGH is often considered to be a kind of in-built fountain of youth and one of the reasons young people have quicker minds, find it so easy to learn new things, and have such fast-healing, resilient bodies is due to their naturally high levels of HGH.
Unfortunately HGH production decreases with age and starts to drop-off during or shortly after adolescence.
Alpha-GPC is often added to anti-ageing formulations and bodybuilding supplements because it’s prowess as a HGH booster can improve muscle growth, increase fat burning, and help the people to look and feel a little younger.
When HGH levels start to become too low the first tell-tale signs of old age start to put in an appearance and, on a mental level, this shows up as reduced learning capabilities, a tendency to forget things, poor recall capacity, lack of concentration, and even mood swings and depression.
Bearing in mind the fact that HGH levels will have already dropped significantly for most people by the time they reach their mid-20s, the HGH boosting ability of Alpha-GPC could have a surprising impact on cognitive function and let’s not forget, that’s on top of its nueuroprotecive abilities and value as a precursor of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine.
Take Away Points
Alpha-GPC is an important nootropic ingredient that offers a number of brain-boosting benefits both directly and indirectly. Supplements that contain this versatile compound are likely to prove to be valuable nootropic allies to people from many different walks of life.
A few examples include students, over-worked business men, easily distracted factory or office workers, and creative individuals who find it hard to focus on their chosen form of creative activity.