Hi this is Jonathan, this is my review of Nicotine USP Solution. Yet another Biohacking video where I'm promoting something addictive.
I'm here in Belgrade, Serbia where they really like Nicotine - almost everyone smokes.
So pop quiz - what did the writers Ayn Rand, Oscar Wilde, George Orwell, J.R.R Tolkien, Tolstoy, Dostoevsky and Mark Twain have in common? Well, they and many other titanic figures of literature were voracious lifelong smokers. That's no coincidence, Nicotine is a potent promoter of creativity and focus.
Nicotine is actually a Nootropic - I'll delve into the studies supporting this later - but it's very addictive. In fact, Nicotine is often called the most addictive drug known. However, addiction is not necessarily bad and I'll make the case that nicotine addiction can be harnessed for useful purposes.
For the vast majority of people it's a very destructive addiction because they consume it smoking carcinogenic cigarettes, which of course gets associated with socializing, taking a short break from work, relaxing at the end of long daydrinking alcohol, celebrating with friends, enjoying the after glow of an orgasm or whatever people like to do while smoking.
I'll suggest that you pickup a little vial of this pharmaceutical grade Nicotine from Blue Brain (it only costs about $10) and that you use it to behaviorally condition yourself to practice some positive habit more consistently.
My little rule for using this USP solution is that I only use it when I'm doing something productive, in my case writing.
You could really associate Nicotine consumption with activity; for example, one of the habits I'm a big fan of no snooze, not using your alarm clock, waking up earlier so you can have a more productive morning. Nicotine is an almost instantaneous wakefulness agent, so I would suggest taking Nicotine not like in bed, but after you've gotten up and out of bed, and presumably at least partially, dressed, so the Nicotine becomes kind of a reward for practicing this difficult habit that a lot of people struggle with.
In the future I'll release a video thoroughly addressing what the human studies are saying about Nicotine usage. This review is just my Biohacker report of how it effects me experientially.
The last time I had consumed Nicotine was about a year ago as part of an Ayahuasca ceremony in the Andes mountains of Colombia, before that must have been +4 years ago when I smoked my last cigarette.
I filled the dropper about a fourth full (which turned out to be too much) and deposited it below my tongue. It tastes like a punch in the throat and unsettles the stomach for a few minutes.
About a minute later I began to feel an energizing buzz coming on similar to caffeine, although perhaps imbuing a more clear and less frenetic mind. The buzz lasted about 90 minutes and had a positive effect on my mood.
I took a smaller dosage in the morning, which I chased with my hearty and also energizing Adaptogenic tea and some tasty yogurt, which woke me up promptly and a very productive morning writing session followed.
I did a second drop in the later afternoon, which perked me up for an important phone call. I worked productively late into the evening.
No noticeable effect on sleep.
This stuff is obviously quiet addictive, the next morning upon opening the refrigerator in the morning I had a fairly strong desire to start the morning with a hit of the stuff which I resisted.
I held off for a couple of days and took an even smaller drop in the afternoon.
I did a drop in the morning, which I chased with my Adaptagenic tea and a capsule of Piracetam. That same evening at 9:00PM I did 3 drops (the most I've done) before a salsa class. It had a noticeable positive effect on my mood and I felt quiet energized during the class, although it had a neutral effect of my salsa skills themselves. No noticeable effect on my coordination, rhythm, etc
I did a drop in the morning, which actually failed to really energize or inspire my morning writing session. Maybe I should have passed on that final glass of wine, I had on my date the night before.
I'm finding that a few drops, chased immediately by adaptopgenic tea, my stack Caballo and a light snack Is a hell of a way a wake up and get in a productive/creative mood.
It's not great for sleep deprivation. One day after a long night enjoying the local culture of Belgrade (Rakia - yuk!). I woke up early to get somethings done, and then I cheated on my diet with a big indulgent sandwich. I had skipped my normal regimen of smart drugs and that afternoon I found myself in an unproductive funk so I did some Nicotine. While it gave me a buzz which I expected it did not improve my focus much so I finished up my work and had a disappointing brain training session.
The most I ever did was three drops a day. One in the morning, one in the afternoon before a productive videoblogging session and one in the evening around 10PM before going salsa dancing. While it certainly pepped me up to hit the dancefloor, like before it didn't make noticeable difference in my coordination. I had a tricky time falling asleep, not sure if that's thanks to the Nicotine, the two beers I had or the Modafinil I did that afternoon.
I did a 3rd drop around 8PM directly before meditation. It had an interesting effect on Meditation, it seemed to fire up my default network; good ideas for addressing the front of challenges I face daily kept jumping into my mind. Which didn't really detract, but made it an interesting meditation session. I took it without a accompanying beverage and while mediating it was all the more obvious how the Nicotine solution bothers my stomach. Directly after meditation I did an IQ Hit brain training session and was a bit dismayed with my mediocre working memory performance or at least lack of improvement over previous sessions.
I repeated the brain training directly after doing a drop in the morning to similarly mediocre performance. As much as I like Nicotine I suspect it has little positive effect on my working memory.
I took a whole week off using Nicotine. I put the Nicotine vial, in an obscure compartment of my luggage where I wouldn't be tempted by it. There was certainly some cravings for a hit of the stuff but no uncomfortable withdrawals, sluggishness or ravenous desire for a cigarette. I found it easier to go off than coffee. After the week off, interestingly my tolerance seemed to be about the same, unlike a lot of performance enhancers I've used a week off didn't seem to reset my tolerance. So I would doubly advise those who are going to use this to start with a very low dose and resist the tendency to increase the dose.
I found it's a pretty good motivation hack. I found that if I used it in the early evening as I was starting to lose interest in slaving away on the computer it would give me an extra 60-90 minutes of focused attention, get me back into my productive 10AM headspace.
Nicotine patches are favorite of lucid dreamers, apparently they can produce some awesome lucid dreams. I did not experience this at all from the solution though. I suppose this is because the patches slowly release Nicotine over hours while the lucid dreamer is passing through REM cycles whereas the use solution seems to not have more than a 90 minute effect.
Some of you might be wandering about what kind of relapse risk taking Nicotine in this form presents for former smokers. Well, I'm a former smoker, I smoked for about 5 years but only when I was drinking, which was 3-4 nights a week. To quit I had to go completely off booze for about 9 months. It's been about 4 years since I've had a cigarette. I'm happy to report that I've had no relapse or cigarette cravings during my time using this.
In fact I think this product could help people quit smoking because Nicotine is the most addictive ingredient in cigarettes and smokers could assuage their Nicotine addictions with it.
Some people maybe saying: Are you mad Jonathan! Isn't Nicotine carcinogenic?
Well I haven't dived really deep into the science on this yet but the consensus seems to be that it isn't. It's the other ingredients that in tobacco products products that are really carcinogenic. Nonetheless, while using it I stepped up my consumption of other supplements that scavenge free radicals and fight cancer; L-Theanine, green tea and ALCAR.