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The meanings of common supplement terms

On this site, you would have encountered some of the often used terms, associated with health supplements. Here are brief description for those terms, in alphabet order. Check Wikipedia or other authoritative sites for more information on any of these medical definitions.

Analogue (or Variant)

In chemistry, analogue is a structural derivative of a parent compound that often differs (varies) from it by a single element. It usually means that a particular compound is very similar to its parent compound. For example, Adrafinil is an earlier analogue to Modafinil - it means Adrafinil is very similar to Modafinil.

Blood-Brain Barrier

The existence of the blood-brain barrier was first noticed by Paul Ehrlich in the 19th Century. Essentially the blood-brain barrier is a membranic structure that protects the brain from chemicals and other substances in the blood. Although this is designed as a protective mechanism for the brain, some of substances or compounds are able to cross this barrier, such as for example Melatonin and Picamilone, bringing about positive effects on the brain and the body.


A 'feel-good' hormone and neurotransmitter is a precursor (forerunner) of adrenaline. Neurotransmitters are chemicals used by the brain to communicate signals between neurons and other cells. Low levels of dopamine are related to Parkinsons disease. Dopamine is extracted from Dopa, which is used in treatment of Parkinsons. Smart drugs like Deprenyl (Selegiline) in particular increase levels of dopamine in the brain and is used as preventative for Alzheimers and Parkinsons diseases.


GABA is short for 'gamma amino butyric acid'. It is the amino acid that acts as an inhibitory neutrotransmitter in the brain. Found in Picamilone and Piracetam. Increased amounts of GABA in the body produce relaxing, anti-anxiety effects. GABA is also believed to increase the amount of HGH - Human Growth Hormone.


Also known as nicotinic acid, niacin is a water-soluble vitamin B3 (previously known as vitamin PP). This means it's easy absorbed, but not stored in the body. Niacin helps insulin regulate blood sugar levels (useful for diabetics) and lowers cholesterol. Severe niacin deficiency can cause pellagra - a vitamin deficiency disease.


Other Definitions:

  • Age Pigment - Also known as age spots, it comes from "wear and tear" with age. 
  • Antioxidants Info - What is the role of antioxidants and antioxidants substances? 
  • Calorie Restriction - One of methods used to improve health and extend maximum lifespan. 
  • DMAE - Compound used in health supplements to enhance vigilance and alertness. 
  • Free Radicals - How they arise and what damage they cause to the human body. 
  • Nootropics - Known as smart drugs or cognitive enhancers, assist information processing. 
  • PCPA - Found in Centrophenoxine, PCPA is used for depletion of serotonin. 

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