Adrafinil: Benefits, Uses, Dosage, and Side Effects

The synthetic nootropic that fights fatigue and boosts brainpower.

Adrafinil: Benefits, Uses, Dosage, and Side Effects

Adrafinil is a powerful wakefulness agent that shows its best potential for improving focus and concentration. However, it also claims to increase general well-being, but it is not habit-forming as other similar products may.

Typically used by people looking to get an edge in terms of productivity, this psychostimulant promises to help users reach their true potential.

While these are big claims for a product that seems dwarfed by its cousin, modafinil, our adrafinil review will examine all these aspects.

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    What is Adrafinil?

    Adrafinil is a nootropic that works to keep users alert and boost wakefulness. The drug, which also goes by the name CRL 40028, was first developed in France by researchers at Louis Lafon Laboratories and sold under the brand name Olmifon.

    Its initial use involved helping elderly individuals improve symptoms of exhaustion and confusion. Shortly after, scientists started testing with modafinil, which was more potent than adrafinil at lower dosages.

    Since then, the two nootropics have been compared performance-wise because both adrafinil and modafinil continue to be considered viable treatments for neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, and the treatment of narcolepsy.

    Whereas modafinil is a prescription drug in many countries, adrafinil can be bought over the counter. Both drugs, however, are considered favorite nootropics by people looking to get the most out of their day in daily life.

    That being said, even though adrafinil is legal to purchase, it remains a banned substance by the World Anti-Doping Agency for competitive athletes as a PED stimulant.

    On the other hand, modafinil is sold under the Cephalon banner as an FDA-approved treatment for the sleep disorder narcolepsy.

    How Does Adrafinil Work In The Brain?

    As a psychostimulant, adrafinil works to keep the mind alert, awake, and productive. Plus, being a non-amphetamine-based drug, it does not present any of the other similar drug’s side effects.

    Adrafinil works best when used as a precursor to modafinil. In this capacity, adrafinil is a prodrug that gets metabolized into modafinil in the body.

    This is the readily bioavailable form that does not need to be converted by the liver. Instead, once absorbed, adrafinil quickly converts to modafinil within an hour and gets to work.

    On its own, adrafinil has an inactive status which is why modafinil has become the preferred version of the two. However, since adrafinil is much more easily available for people to procure, it remains more popular within nootropic circles.

    Its working mechanisms are believed to optimize the production of certain neurotransmitters that are directly related to vigilance and drive.

    It also stimulates serotonin production, which is an action that improves mood and reduces anxiety levels.

    However, information regarding its exact working mechanism isn’t well-defined as it has not been studied significantly in human studies.

    In comparison, modafinil is the better-researched drug and is recognized by the FDA as a prescription-only stimulant drug.

    What Are The Benefits of Adrafinil?

    Adrafinil is a drug with nootropic benefits and a treatment for certain diseases and illnesses.

    Boosts Energy Levels and Alertness

    Research shows adrafinil to enhance energy levels and promote alertness. In addition, as a stimulant compound, it can increase energy by preventing daytime drowsiness and increasing attentiveness without the jittery feeling associated with stimulants.

    Among energy enhancers, adrafinil is popular with healthy individuals looking to reduce exhaustion from working long hours and not getting enough sleep.

    People who suffer from daytime exhaustion or have sleep difficulties report increasing their physical and mental drive after using the drug.

    It is an often doctor-prescribed drug to treat chronic fatigue associated with disorders like insomnia, depression, narcolepsy, and multiple sclerosis.

    However, since modafinil has largely replaced adrafinil in clinical practice and studies, much of the research involving human studies is on modafinil instead.

    One study shows that when 100-200 mg of modafinil was administered to 60 healthy and young adults, there was an improvement in feelings of wakefulness, attention, and cognition (1).

    Another study establishes the drug’s potential to improve motivation, reaction time, and vigilance. The study involved 18 healthy adults given a modafinil dose of 4 mg/kg body weight versus a placebo.

    The modafinil group demonstrated significantly improved feelings of motivation, reaction time, and vigilance compared to the placebo group (2).

    Typically, 300 mg of adrafinil is needed to experience a reduction in fatigue and improvement in energy.

    Positively Enhances Mood

    Among its various uses, one is to improve mood, possibly by boosting the neurotransmitter dopamine. Evidence from research on modafinil reveals that the drug increases dopamine in the brain (3).

    Since many of its effects transfer to adrafinil, this increase may cause adrafinil to improve well-being.

    Another neurotransmitter is serotonin which stabilizes mood and is also pivotal to lowering depression. Adrafinil may boost serotonin levels in the brain that can contribute to triggering feelings of well-being and happiness.

    One study looked at modafinil reducing fatigue associated with depression. The placebo-controlled trial involved 136 people with clinical depression given either modafinil or a placebo for 6 weeks.

    The drug was found to quickly improve both fatigue and daytime wakefulness as compared to the placebo group (4).

    Improves Memory

    Although its main claim to fame is its wakefulness-promoting qualities, adrafinil is also a strong contender for improving memory retention, recall, learning capacity, and concentration.

    Research in this area investigated the cognition-enhancing effects of the drug. The double-blind study recruited 64 healthy participants who were given either modafinil or a placebo.

    Study results showed the drug to improve memory, planning, and decision-making more than the placebo group (5).

    Leads To Better Cognitive Functions

    Modafinil quickly joins the ranks of other drugs like Adderall, Ritalin, and Concerta to boost awareness and productivity. However, these can only be taken as a prescription medication, whereas adrafinil is an over-the-counter option with easier accessibility.

    People report it to sharpen focus and the ability to maintain it. There have also been reports of improved mental clarity, easing demanding work, and other aspects of cognitive function.

    Results from a meta-analysis show modafinil to help healthy subjects think better. References from other studies show it to present gains in flexible thinking, combining information, and dealing with novelty (6).

    Has Neuroprotective Effects

    Like other nootropic supplements, adrafinil can be used as a neuroprotectant to shield against neurological concerns.

    As mentioned earlier, it was initially used as a treatment for the elderly suffering from depression triggered by neurodegenerative disorders.

    Some studies with animals show that modafinil may help prevent neuronal damage in Parkinson’s disease (7).

    Less Addictive Than Modafinil

    With the ability to do whatever modafinil promises, adrafinil is still less addictive of the two options.

    It does not present any of the risks or symptoms of other racetams like increased blood pressure or heart rate and is easy to get without a prescription.

    However, excessive or prolonged use may develop tolerance to its effects.

    How To Take Adrafinil?

    Adrafinil is available for purchase as either tablets, capsules, or powder. These commonly come in dosages of 150, 300, and 600 mg.

    Evidence suggests that after using adrafinil, peak levels are achieved in the blood about an hour after the administered dose. The peak effects are felt after two hours which can continue to be felt up to 4-6 hours.

    As such, many users take their dose of adrafinil early in the morning to avoid daytime sleepiness or other complications when it’s time for bed.

    On another note, the time it takes for adrafinil to be metabolized and to feel its effects depends on a few different things. For instance, metabolization will depend on whether you had anything to eat before taking the drug and the specific form you use.

    If you’ve taken a capsule or tablet on an empty stomach, adrafinil will metabolize in about an hour which is when you should start to feel its effects.


    Taking adrafinil can vary significantly from one user to the next. Clinical information suggests that the adrafinil dosage range can start from 200 mg to 600 mg per day and go up to a higher end of 1200 mg.

    The higher doses have to be divided into two with a 600 mg morning dose followed by a 600 mg afternoon boost.

    When compared to modafinil, adrafinil dosage is on the higher side. This is because modafinil gets used by the body quicker and more effectively, so smaller doses are needed.

    Anyone taking adrafinil for the first time needs to be careful. For most beginners, an ideal dose is around 200-300 mg daily, from where you can ramp it up until you reach the desired effect.

    What is The Half-life?

    Once converted to modafinil, the metabolite has a half-life of 12-15 hours.

    That is why it’s recommended to take adrafinil in the morning instead of later in the day.

    Adrafinil Stacks

    When trying to figure out the best adrafinil stack, or any other combination of nootropics, a few different factors come into play.

    These include how sensitive a person may be too stimulating compounds, how alert and wakeful you may want to feel, or how an individual’s body chemistry works, and such.

    However, the following recommendations have been tried and deemed effective by neurohackers.

    Adrafinil and Noopept Stack

    This is a popular eugeroic stack as it amplifies the focus and concentration aspect of Noopept by pairing it up with adrafinil.

    The latter’s addition to the stack intensifies the cognitive function associated with Noopept and takes it up a level by escalating the wakefulness and alertness that adrafinil is known for.

    Consumption of the two nootropics has also let users experience improved productivity with reports of faster learning and processing, intense focus and concentration, and an all-day energy boost.

    The combined mechanism of the two nootropics in this stack shows increases in motivation, improved memory retention, recall, and a potential mood boost.

    This stack typically starts to show effects within two after dosing, lasting anywhere from 6-12 hours.

    The most common amounts used for this stack are 300 mg of adrafinil and 15 mg of Noopept, both on an empty stomach.

    Adrafinil and Phenibut Stack

    Interest in this stack lies with people who may be sensitive to stimulants but still want to use adrafinil for its energizing potential.

    Its effectiveness comes from the Phenibut dose, which has a stress-relieving effect on the body. Stacking the two yields the energizing effects of adrafinil while still staying calm and composed in behavior.

    Phenibut could equally make you feel tired, while adrafinil could offset that experience with its wakefulness activity. Using the two together may improve precision and accuracy, enhance motivation, provide more energy, and increase sociability.

    However, it may take between 3-5 hours for Phenibut to kick in and around 2 hours for adrafinil to take effect. The stack will provide results for up to 12-24 hours, depending on the amount of Phenibut and adrafinil used.

    While everyone can dose differently for this stack, a typical amount may include 300 mg of Phenibut on an empty stomach 3-4 hours before another 300 mg Phenibut dose with a 300 mg adrafinil dose on an empty stomach.

    Adrafinil and Phenylpiracetam Stack

    This is a powerful combination of substances that is ideal for people looking for lots of stimulation. This is given phenylpiracetam’s intense stimulating potential as a racetam currently available on the market.

    As such, when you bring the working properties of adrafinil and phenylpiracetam together, it will take productivity, motivation, efficacy to a new level.

    The most significant benefit isn’t only heightened focus and cognition alone, but to have the backing of adrafinil’s energy boost and phenylpiracetam’s stimulating activity.

    Users start feeling the effects within two hours after dosing, lasting up to 8-12 hours.

    This stack uses 300 mg of adrafinil on an empty stomach first thing in the morning and is paired with 100 mg of phenylpiracetam a few hours later with a small meal.

    Adrafinil and Caffeine Stack

    Another potent combination of psychostimulants, many individuals use it to create a stimulating effect of an enjoyable, awake, alert, and motivating experience.

    In contrast, some people have been known to use adrafinil to wean off a coffee dependence/addiction.

    A common way to stack the two stimulants together is to take between 200-300 mg of adrafinil on an empty stomach initial task in the morning, then follow it with a cup or two of caffeinated coffee.

    Likewise, adrafinil is also stacked alongside l-theanine, which seems to promote relaxation. That being said, L-theanine can be relaxing, but if it has a sluggish effect, then try adding some caffeine to increase the alertness component.

    Does Adrafinil Have Side Effects?

    The various reasons why adrafinil and modafinil remain popular drugs are because they deliver the expected benefits with not as many side effects.

    Adrafinil users who have reported side effects report mild, including some anxiety, irritability, headaches, and occasional insomnia. Some others report that adrafinil may cause a dry mouth, nausea, or skin reactions.

    The most typical side effect seems to be difficulty sleeping. However, using adrafinil early on in the morning seems to remediate this issue. Other side effects typically occur at higher doses, indicating that your adrafinil levels are too high.

    One safety consideration when using adrafinil is that its conversion to modafinil may elevate liver enzymes. Since adrafinil is largely metabolized in the liver, excessive use or large doses may elevate liver enzymes, leading to liver damage over time.

    Also, using this product alongside amphetamines or other compounds that affect liver function is not recommended.

    Additionally, there is the potential for an increased risk of high blood pressure and heart problems when taking higher doses. Based on these effects, adrafinil should not be taken every day or for more extended periods.

    When taking either adrafinil or modafinil, be sure always to follow dosage guidelines and discontinue use if you experience any side effects. It does not seem to present any drug interactions.

    Much of the research on adrafinil, in particular, comes from animal studies, animal testing, or anecdotal reports at best. Evidence on humans is somewhat limited to it’s best to be careful when using this prodrug.

    Where To Buy Adrafinil?

    There are a few different options you can consider when you want to buy adrafinil. It is available through specialty and generic supplement stores online and in-store.

    Some vendors have their certifications, lab testing, and quality checks in place, which indicates product purity and quality control. It is important to check such information before making a purchase.

    Our recommendation is to check out the adrafinil offered by PureRawz that comes with the benefits of same-day shipping, third-party tested for purity, and a 30-day money-back guarantee.


    Our adrafinil review establishes it as a potent stimulant with many nootropic qualities.

    The compound provides a mixture of mental and physical health benefits for increased energy, stamina, and mental acuity.

    Safety concerns associated with its use are minimal, and tolerance is usually not an issue. As such, it remains a favorite among people looking to make the most of their productive hours.

    We also feel that it may be a synthetic compound to start if you want a starter nootropic that doesn’t pack a punch too strong but doesn’t compromise its effects.

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