Best Nootropics for Sleep
Medically reviewed by Dr. Darshan Shingala MD, MPH — Written by Erik Levi, FNTP — Updated on November 12, 2021


  • Nootropics + Biohacking can boost deep, restful sleep.

  • Magnesium + Red Light therapy is a potent sleep combination

  • Nootropics and biohacking optimize neurotransmitters that improve sleep.

  • Regulating circadian rhythm is the #1 way to boost sleep performance.

  • Qualia Night is a Preformulated Sleep Nootropic stack that improves sleep.

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Deep, restful sleep is crucial for optimizing mental and physical performance.

While you sleep, your body repairs and replenishes your vital organs so you can be at your best.

New research is shedding light on the importance of high-quality sleep.

Anyone who wants to elevate their game into high performance must focus on getting consistent, restorative sleep.

The following roundup reviews the latest sleep science along with some of the most potent aids for getting a great night of sleep.

Best Nootropics for Sleep

What Are The Best Nootropics for Sleep - Quick Answers

Magnesium#1 Magnesium ProductLearn More
Red Light SaunaHeal while you sleepLearn More
Qualia Night#1 Nootropic Stack for SleepLearn More
CBDNon-Psychoactive CannabisLearn More
Performance Lab SleepUltramodern sleep aid helps you wake in the morning ready to performLearn More
Circadian Rhythm BlendPromotes a healthy circadian rhythm so that you can sleep deeper.Learn More
Delta 8 THCRegulates sleep cycle and helps you experience calm, promotes restLearn More
Mind Lab Pro#1 Nootropic For BeginnersLearn More
L-ornithineHolistic stamina and stress supportLearn More

Benefits of Nootropics and Supplements For Sleep

Nootropics and supplements have a wide spectrum of health benefits, especially with regard to sleep.1Sheldon Cohen, William J Doyle, Cuneyt M Alper, Denise Janicki-Deverts, Ronald B Turner, Sleep habits and susceptibility to the common cold, Arch Intern Med. 2009

Nootropics are natural and safe alternatives to many contemporary medications and come with minimal side effects.

Most nootropics are non-habit forming in nature, which is a great advantage when compared to many other similar medications or drugs. As an added benefit, nootropics support brain health and help to regulate the circadian rhythm.

Common Sleep Problem Statistics

The statistics regarding sleep patterns and sleep associated disorders are quite concerning.

For instance, about 35.2% of the adult population in the United States of America are sleep deprived as they tend to sleep for less than seven hours per night on average.2National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Division of Population Health, Sleep and Sleep Disorders, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Division of Population Health. 20173Nathaniel F. Watson, MD, MSc, Moderator, M. Safwan Badr, MD, Gregory Belenky, MD, Donald L. Bliwise, PhD, Orfeu M. Buxton, PhD, Daniel Buysse, MD, David F. Dinges, PhD, James Gangwisch, PhD, Michael A. Grandner, PhD, MSTR, CBSM, Clete Kushida, MD, PhD, Raman K. Malhotra, MD, Jennifer L. Martin, PhD,Sanjay R. Patel, MD, MSc, Stuart F. Quan, MD, and Esra Tasali, MD, Joint Consensus Statement of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and Sleep Research Society on the Recommended Amount of Sleep for a Healthy Adult: Methodology and Discussion, J Clin Sleep Med. 2015

It is estimated that up to 48% of older adults suffer from chronic insomnia.4Dhaval Patel , Joel Steinberg , Pragnesh Patel , Insomnia in the Elderly: A Review, J Clin Sleep Med. 2018

Best Nootropics for Sleep

In the U.S., it is estimated that approximately 135,000 to 200,000 people have narcolepsy, which is a chronic sleep disorder characterized by extreme daytime drowsiness.5K Nishiyama , J V Johnson, Karoshi–death from overwork: occupational health consequences of Japanese production management, Int J Health Serv. 1997

People with narcolepsy are unable to stay awake for extended periods of time.6NINDS, Narcolepsy Fact Sheet, NINDS. 2020

Sleep for Optimal Mental, and Physiological Function

Best Nootropics for Sleep

Sleep is a vital physiological function that is essential in maintaining the homeostasis of our body. Adequate sleep is crucial for the maintenance of optimal cognitive and behavioral functions.7NINDS, Brain Basics: Understanding Sleep, NINDS . 20198U.S. National Library of Medicine, Sleep and your health, U.S. National Library of Medicine. 2021

Melatonin and Circadian Rhythm

Melatonin acts as a time cue for our circadian rhythm. In other words, melatonin is similar to an internal clock that drives our sleep-wake cycle.9C Cajochen, K Kräuchi, A Wirz-Justice, Role of melatonin in the regulation of human circadian rhythms and sleep, J Neuroendocrinol. 2003

Best Nootropics for Sleep


The melatonin hormone is secreted by the pineal gland in response to darkness or absence of light, which helps to synchronize our circadian rhythm between sleep-wake times.10Sylvie Tordjman, Sylvie Chokron,2 Richard Delorme, Annaëlle Charrier, Eric Bellissant, Nemat Jaafari, and Claire Fougerou, Melatonin: Pharmacology, Functions and Therapeutic Benefits, Curr Neuropharmacol. 2017

Neurotransmitters and Sleep


Enhanced serotonin activity has been linked to sleep deprivation. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter of particular interest to sleep researchers because it can induce both wakefulness or sleep depending on the part of the brain and the corresponding receptor which is involved in the response. 11Christopher J. Watson, Ph.D., Helen A. Baghdoyan, Ph.D., and Ralph Lydic, Ph.D, Neuropharmacology of Sleep and Wakefulness, Sleep Med Clin. 201112Reidun Ursin, Serotonin and sleep, Sleep Med Rev. 2002


Dopamine is a wake-promoting neurotransmitter, that is, an increase in dopamine reduces sleep.13Jerome M Siegel, The neurotransmitters of sleep, J Clin Psychiatry. 2004

Best Nootropics for Sleep


Norepinephrine is a wake-promoting neurotransmitter, that is, an increase in Norepinephrine promotes wakefulness and reduces sleep.14Christopher J. Watson, Ph.D., Helen A. Baghdoyan, Ph.D., and Ralph Lydic, Ph.D., Neuropharmacology of Sleep and Wakefulness, Sleep Med Clin. 2010


GABA is an inhibitory neurotransmitter which stimulates the REM sleep cycle.15Jerome M Siegel, The neurotransmitters of sleep, J Clin Psychiatry. 2004

REM/Deep Sleep/Light Sleep

Best Nootropics for Sleep


There are four stages of sleep, described as follows:16Aakash K. Patel , Vamsi Reddy, John F. Araujo , Physiology, Sleep Stages, StatPearls Publishing. 202117Aakash K. Patel; Vamsi Reddy; John F. Araujo., Physiology, Sleep Stages, StatPearls Publishing; 2021

  1. Non-rapid eye movement Stage 1 (NREM-1) is a transition period between wakefulness and sleep. The body unwinds and relaxes in this stage by slowing down the heart rate, and the brain also slows down.
  2. Non-rapid eye movement Stage 2 (NREM-2) is the stage of light sleep where the body temperature drops and the brain produces rapid rhythmic waves known as sleep spindles.
  3. Non-rapid eye movement Stage 3 (NREM-3) is a transitory stage between light sleep and deep sleep where the muscles of the body relax completely and the brain starts producing delta waves.
  4. Rapid eye movement (REM) is the final stage of the sleep cycle where the body becomes immobilized and the eyes move rapidly. The activity of the brain is similar to awake hours and dreams occur in this stage.

The Dangers of Sleep Deprivation


Best Nootropics for Sleep

Sleep deprivation is linked to heart attack, stroke, and increased risk of other cardiovascular disorders.18Qiao He, Peng Zhang, Guangxiao Li, Huixu Dai, Jingpu Shi, The association between insomnia symptoms and risk of cardio-cerebral vascular events: A meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies, Sage Journal. 2017

Mental Problems

Best Nootropics for Sleep

Sleep deprivation is associated with mood swings, gaps in memory, and compromised decision-making skills.19Torbjörn Akerstedt, Göran Kecklund, Jan Selén, Disturbed sleep and fatigue as predictors of return from long-term sickness absence, Ind Health. 2010 Chronic sleep deprivation increases the risk of development of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia with increasing age.20Ehsan Shokri-Kojori , Gene-Jack Wang , Corinde E Wiers , Sukru B Demiral , Min Guo , Sung Won Kim , Elsa Lindgren , Veronica Ramirez , Amna Zehra , Clara Freeman , Gregg Miller, Peter Manza , Tansha Srivastava , Susan De Santi , Dardo Tomasi , Helene Benveniste , Nora D Volkow, β-Amyloid accumulation in the human brain after one night of sleep deprivation, Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2018

Metabolism and Obesity

Best Nootropics for Sleep

Deprivation of sleep is linked to a reduction in leptin, which is an appetite-suppressing hormone, and an increase in ghrelin, which is an appetite stimulant.21Dieter Riemann , Christoph Nissen , Laura Palagini , Andreas Otte, Michael L Perlis , Kai Spiegelhalder, The neurobiology, investigation, and treatment of chronic insomnia, Lancet Neurol. 2015 This imbalance can lead to dysregulation of metabolism and an increased risk of obesity.22 Christopher B Cooper,Eric V Neufeld, Brett A Dolezal,and Jennifer L Martin , Sleep deprivation and obesity in adults: a brief narrative review,BMJ Open Sport Exerc Med. 2018

1. Magnesium Breakthrough

#1 Magnesium Product

  • Promotes deep sleep and better cognitive functioning
  • Reduces inflammation for pain relief
  • Manage stress, anxiety, and chronic inflammation
  • Get more magnesium in your diet without having to take separate supplements
  • Provided great absorption rates for different forms of magnesium

Magnesium has been shown to improve sleep and manage several conditions, including stress, anxiety, and chronic inflammation.

Magnesium Breakthrough is a complex formulation that includes seven different forms of magnesium, such as chelate, citrate, bisglycinate, malate, aspartate, taurate, and orotate.

This is an important characteristic because different forms of magnesium can have different bioavailabilities; therefore, a complex formula consisting of different magnesium compounds is likely to increase the probability of gaining all the health benefits of magnesium. 

Magnesium is a cofactor in more than 300 enzymatic reactions which occur in the human body and is essential in regulating all physiological and metabolic processes, including sleep homeostasis.

2. Red Light Sauna

Heal while you sleep

  • Promotes deep, restorative sleep
  • Increases healing and a sense of calm within the body
  • Improves all parameters of sleep including quality, duration, latency
  • Low-EMF incandescent bulbs are better mimics the sun's natural light

Red light therapy, aka photobiomodulation, is a potent promoter of deep, restorative sleep.

The near-infrared light waves associated with red light therapy demonstrate the ability to penetrate cells below the skin and lower inflammation. This translates into increased healing and a sense of calm within the body.

In clinical studies, applying red light has shown the ability to improve all parameters of sleep including sleep quality, sleep duration, and sleep latency.

Sauna Space is my #1 choice for red light therapy since they use Low-EMF incandescent bulbs which better mimic the sun's natural light.

Use Coupon Code HOLISTICNOOTROPICS5 at checkout for an extra 5% off your purchase!

3. Qualia Night

Qualia Night Best. Nootropics for sleep

#1 Nootropic Stack for Sleep

  • Highly potent sleep formula that addresses all aspects of your sleep
  • Supports natural melatonin production and increases nocturnal stem-cell function
  • Contains 25 ingredients, each proven to induce deep, restorative sleep
  • Sharpens ability to stay awake during the day

Qualia Night is a sleep-specific nootropic blend from Neurohacker, the maker’s of Qualia Mind.

This formula includes 25 ingredients that are each proven to induce deep, restorative sleep.

Qualia Night’s potent mix of nootropics, vitamins, herbs, amino acids, and minerals support natural melatonin production along with nocturnal stem-cell function and BDNF biogenesis.

For you this means more profound sleep benefits and a sharper brain when awake.

4. CBD

Non-Psychoactive Cannabis

  • Promotes quality of sleep
  • Helps with insomnia and other sleep disorders
  • Reduces stress & anxiety for better sleep patterns
  • Increases dopamine production.
  • Boosts mood and memory.
  • Promotes creativity and clear thinking

CBD can support sleep and be used to help with a variety of sleep disorders, including insomnia.

The mechanism of action of CBD to regulate energy, mood, and sleep, is dependent on the receptors of the endocannabinoid system in the body.

Since there is a huge network of endocannabinoid receptors in our body, CBD can impact sleep homeostasis on my levels. For instance, CBD can improve the quality of sleep and help to improve the symptoms of REM sleep behavior disorder (RBD).

CBD can relieve the symptoms of stress and anxiety, which can in turn positively affect sleep patterns.

It’s best used in combination with a racetam, or acetylcholinesterase inhibitor like Huperzine A. Citicoline has also shown benefits for ADHD when used with caffeine. 23Steven E. Bruce, et al. Improvements in Concentration, Working Memory, and Sustained Attention Following Consumption of a Natural Citicoline-Caffeine Beverage, Int J Food Sci Nutr. 2014

Since citicoline has shown the ability to increase the release of dopamine, it is a prime candidate as a nootropic for ADHD. It can also improve mood and memory which are both often seen with ADHD.

Some people also find that this nootropic also increases their mood.

Learn about

5. Performance Lab Sleep

Ultramodern sleep aid helps you wake in the morning ready to perform

  • Accelerates sleep onset
  • Relaxes the mind and body to improve relaxation
  • Encourages natural melatonin production for a more restful sleep
  • Promotes sleep-supportive muscle relaxation
  • Modulates the dopamine system which might help people living with ADHD stay on task

Performance Lab Sleep offers natural melatonin derived from tart cherry which effectively accelerates sleep onset.

It also relaxes the mind and body and provides relief from stress and pain.

It encourages the production of natural melatonin and serotonin which prepare the body for sleep.

It also contains some forms of magnesium which promote sleep-supportive muscle relaxation.

First developed as a wakefulness-promoting drug to combat narcolepsy, Adrafinil helps with ADHD according to preliminary research.24Modafinil for cognitive neuroenhancement in healthy non-sleep-deprived subjects: A systematic review, Eur Neuropsychopharmacol. 2015 25Milgram NW, et al. Oral administration of adrafinil improves discrimination learning in aged beagle dogs, Pharmacol Biochem Behav. 2000

This nootropic can help you stay awake and alert over long periods. It seems to modulate the dopamine system, which might help people living with ADHD stay on task.26Lindsay SE, Gudelsky GA, Heaton PC. Use of modafinil for the treatment of attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, Ann Pharmacother. 2006

Learn more about adrafinil for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and more.

6. Circadian Rhythm Blend

Promotes a healthy circadian rhythm so that you can sleep deeper.

  • Natural, plant-based ingredients for sleep
  • 100% organic and therapeutic grade oils
  • Easy to use before bedtime
  • Supports the natural circadian rhythm

This essential oil formula includes sleep-friendly oils such as Balsam of Peru (Myroxylon balsamum), Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia), Melaleuca (Melaleuca quinquinervera ct Cineole), Myrtle (Myrtus communis), Myrrh (Commiphora myrrha), and more. Each of these natural, organic therapeutic oils help induce a state of calm and restfulness to help induce sleep.

Together, this blend is a potent stimulator of melatonin and helps rebalance your natural circadian rhythm..

Simply apply a few drops to the skin before bed for best results. 

7. Delta 8 THC

Delta 8 THC

Regulates sleep cycle and helps you experience calm, promotes rest

  • Increase sleep quality by interacting with the endocannabinoid system
  • Boosts your ability to fall asleep more quickly and stay asleep longer through the night
  • Reduce pain and inflammation which helps to improve sleep quality
  • Helps fight insomnia without prescription medication
  • Prevent unpleasant sleep interruptions

Delta 8 THC interacts with the body's endocannabinoid system and can provide you the relaxation that induces sleep.

Regular use of Delta 8 THC can help you fall asleep more quickly and stay asleep for longer hours throughout the night.

Some scientific studies have concluded that delta-8 might potentially have clinically useful sedative and hypnotic properties which may be beneficial for patients diagnosed with sleeping disorders.

Delta-8 also has analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects which further contribute to the improvement of quality of sleep.

8. Mind Lab Pro

#1 Nootropic For Beginners

  • Provides many benefits beyond ADHD
  • Supports healthy neurotransmitters for focus and concentration
  • Uses high-potency ingredients to avoid overstimulation
  • 3rd Party tested, guaranteed free of harmful or addictive substances

Mind Lab Pro is my top stack choice for combatting ADHD.

It's 11 high-potency ingredients can improve your ability to focus and concentrate without overstimulating your nervous system.

The nootropics in this formula boost focus and concentration by enhancing acetylcholine, dopamine, and GABA. 

Adaptogens like Rhodiola and Bacopa increase mental energy while lowering your stress response.

Compared to ADHD drugs, this stack isn't addictive and won't leave you feeling overstimulated. 

The supplements themselves are 3rd party tested and free of excess fillers and toxic ingredients. 

I love this stack for nootropic newbies and experienced nootropic users alike.

9. L-ornithine

Holistic stamina and stress support

  • Promote restful sleep and enhance the quality of sleep
  • Reduce mental stress levels
  • Modulate GABA system to reduce physical stress in your body.
  • Enhance mood

L-ornithine helps in promoting restful sleep and enhancing the quality of sleep.

L-ornithine modulates the GABA system and lowers stress hormones in the body, which induces a state of relaxation.

In addition to reducing mental stress levels, L-ornithine also buffers the levels of ammonia toxicity by disposing of excess nitrogen which reduces the levels of metabolic stress.

It is an all-natural supplement and has a wide variety of benefits which are mostly associated with stress relief, sleep improvement, and mood enhancement.

About the author:

Erik Levi, FNTP

Erik Levi is a co-founder of and a certified holistic nutritional therapy practitioner.

As an NTP Erik takes a nutrition first approach to health. He has worked with many different people to help them use nutrition to optimize their quality of life.

Erik believes that mental health is a physiological process and cognitive enhancement is not something that can be achieved by just taking some pills with good Amazon reviews.

Instead, true cognitive enhancement comes with the right balance of nutrients, movement, and gratitude. Erik continues to stay up to date with the most current nootropic and holistic health research and promises to deliver the best solutions possible.

You can check out his personal health blog/podcast/YouTube Channel all under the name Holistic A-Hole.

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