Research-based information regarding: Modafinil, Adderall, and Nootropics

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The medicinal medication modafinil is well recognized for being "eugeroic," or for enhancing and promoting alertness.


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Within three medical disorders, modafinil is given by healthcare professionals to address excessive daytime sleepiness [1].

  • Narcolepsy
  • Sleep disturbance at work
  • Apnea, Obstructive Sleep

But modafinil is most commonly used off-label as a nootropic, or cognitively improving “smart drug,” for non-medical purposes. Actually, 90% of all modafinil prescriptions are written for unapproved uses, such as general drowsiness, depression, and exhaustion [2].

Millions of professionals use it worldwide, many of whom work in very competitive fields where productivity and performance are critical.

Surgeons, Ivy League students, Silicon Valley entrepreneurs, troops in the armed forces, successful day traders, and any occupation that relies solely on knowledge-based labor are among the professions that frequently utilize modafinil [3].

For the last ten years, modafinil has garnered a lot of media attention. Reputable publications like The Wall Street Journal [4], ABC, New York Magazine [3], and Vice [5] have published several high-profile articles about the drug. Furthermore, well-known biohacking experts like Ben Greenfield and Dave Asprey have shared their personal success stories with this clever medication.

It makes many people wonder a number of things regarding modafinil, like: Does it really work as its most ardent proponents claim? Is it safe to take this medication for an extended period of time? Will using it get me in trouble with the law? And how can I get my hands on it?

The purpose of is to offer thorough responses to all of your inquiries about the medication, backed up by in-depth scientific research and testimonies from knowledgeable and seasoned users.


The notion that modafinil is the best medication for increasing productivity is not just based on rumor and anecdotal evidence.

Numerous academic studies support modafinil’s efficacy for a range of mental characteristics, including:

Defeats Fatigue – Patients with multiple sclerosis and cancer may experience much lower levels of weariness when using modafinil [6, 7, 8].

Improved Memory – Both healthy, non-sleep-deprived people and those experiencing depression have shown improvements in working memory (i.e., immediate memory) and episodic memory (i.e., distinct recollections of particular events) after taking modafinil [9, 10].

Heightened Motivation – Positive changes in general mood and subjective well-being are brought about by modafinil’s actions. Studies using dopamine-deficient animals and healthy individuals have confirmed this [11, 12].

Enhanced Alertness – Modafinil can improve your alertness and return your cognitive function to baseline levels or beyond, regardless of whether you had a full night’s sleep or not [13, 14].

Longer-Lasting Energy – When used for extended periods of time exceeding 40 hours of continuous wakefulness, modafinil regularly enhances the mental performance of sleep-deprived military personnel [15, 16].

Individual Modafinil users have also experienced weight loss that is more evident, the elimination of “writer’s block,” and a decrease in impulsivity toward both internal and external distractions. In contrast to the benefits previously mentioned, these are entirely anecdotal in nature and have not received any scientific evidence.

It’s possible for Modafinil users to have any, all, or none of these side effects. One of the rare nootropics where each user’s experience is unique because of their unique genetic makeup and biochemistry is modafinil.

Any debate regarding what modafinil will and won’t do is totally hypothetical unless you use it consistently for one to three months or longer and evaluate its impact on your cognitive.

However, in general, modafinil can significantly enhance the cognitive abilities and character qualities necessary to sustain exceptionally high levels of individual productivity.


When compared to other prescription medications, modafinil is arguably one of the safest and most well-tolerated nootropics available.

As per an extensive analysis conducted by ACS Chemical Neuroscience [17]:

When compared to the toxicological profile of conventional psychostimulants like amphetamine or cocaine, modafinil exhibits fewer or no negative effects. Furthermore, compared to other stimulants, modafinil is typically well tolerated in animal models and has a very low addiction liability (low reinforcing effects) in people who do not abuse drugs.

Nonetheless, both inexperienced and seasoned Modafinil users frequently experience a few negative effects. Among them are [18]:

It should be mentioned that a lot of these side effects are rather moderate and go away fast when Modafinil is used again or stopped completely.

Although tolerance to modafinil can develop, overdosing on the drug is mostly invariably the cause of this.

Furthermore, whether modafinil is taken for prescribed medical issues or to improve cognitive function, these adverse effects are almost nonexistent when taken at the right dosage and time. For best results, utilize nootropics and prescription drugs responsibly, just like you would with anything else.

The “enantiopure” form of modafinil, Armodafinil, has the same safety profile and adverse effects as modafinil. Any variations noted by people who have used both nootropics are very personal.

As of right now, no thorough research has been done to compare the frequency, severity, or adverse effects of long-term usage of Armodafinil against Modafinil in healthy, non-sleep-deprived adults.


The Drug Enforcement Administration classifies modafinil as a prescription drug under “Schedule IV” in the United States. Because of this, it carries a “low risk of dependence and low potential for abuse” [19].

Similar categories apply to modafinil in other nations. This implies that getting a prescription for Modafinil from your doctor for either on-label or off-label use is the only way to buy and use the medication without worrying about any legal repercussions.

A lot of people will not be able to get a prescription for off-label usage of modafinil, particularly for improving cognitive function. Thus far, the only documented exceptions have been made for severely incapacitating illnesses like multiple sclerosis and chronic depression in order to counteract the normal exhaustion that these people suffer.

In the event that your doctor suspects you have narcolepsy or obstructive sleep apnea, they will typically put you through a battery of tests before making the diagnosis. Doctors won’t give Modafinil to you until after that, and even then, doctors might have alternative drugs in mind to treat your illness.

However, it doesn’t seem to matter if you order a small quantity of Modafinil for personal use. We are unaware of any instance where someone has ever been arrested or otherwise run afoul of the law for buying tiny amounts of modafinil online for personal use, either in the US or elsewhere.

One thing is certain, though: it is illegal for anyone to sell modafinil to another person.

There is one more crucial legal issue to deal with:

In professional sports, modafinil is 100% illegal and prohibited by a number of organizations, including the USADA and WADA [20].

Drug tests are available that can precisely identify very low quantities of modafinil in your blood or urine several days after you’ve taken it.


Can you clarify the precise mechanism of action that modafinil uses to affect the brain and the body?

Regretfully, decades of investigation have failed to produce a conclusive response. Scientists have been able to find “puzzle pieces” on the mechanism of action of modafinil in the corpus of medical literature, but they are unable to solve the complete puzzle.

One of modafinil’s most well-known effects is that it elevates dopamine extracellular concentrations in the brain by blocking dopamine reuptake. Modafinil “allows” more dopamine to be available for usage at any one time rather than increasing dopamine synthesis directly [21].

The mechanism of action of modafinil is also thought to involve other neurotransmitters, such as decreased GABA production and increased histamine production [22]:

“Most studies on the wake-promoting mechanism of modafinil have concentrated on monoaminergic effects, which demonstrate that modafinil stimulates the brain’s systems for histamine (HA), norepinephrine (NE), serotonin (5-HT), dopamine (DA), and orexin; however, researchers have not been able to identify a single site of action or major receptor binding.”

Modafinil lowers the plasma levels of medications metabolized by CYP3A4 by increasing the activity of these enzymes in the liver. On the other hand, it raises the plasma levels of medications processed by CYP2C19 enzymes by inhibiting their enzymatic activity in the liver [23].

Other significant pharmacological features of modafinil consist of [24]:

  • Half-life of elimination: 12 to 15 hours
  • reaches its maximum blood concentration about two hours after consumption.
  • At dosages of 200 mg to 600 mg, its pharmacokinetic characteristics are dependent on the amount.
  • The liver converts 90% of modafinil into the inactive metabolites modafinil acid and modafinil sulfone.
  • The main way that modafinil is eliminated is through urine.
  • Modafinil half-life and peak plasma concentrations are higher in individuals with liver and/or renal abnormalities.


Customers may now buy Modafinil online from an expanding number of reliable suppliers and have it mailed to their home country.

One scientific study discovered up to 55+ websites devoted solely to the distribution of modafinil in various forms. [25]

Yes, there are a number of benefits to buying modafinil online. 

Customers can obtain higher-quality Modafinil at more affordable costs, as well as have their chosen quantity delivered promptly to their home without needing to show a prescription from a doctor—which they should still keep on file.

These suppliers are also designed to make the process of purchasing modafinil online as simple as possible.

The regulatory status of modafinil differs per jurisdiction, as we will highlight below. However, as far as we are aware, there has never been a situation—in the US or elsewhere—where someone buying Modafinil online in modest amounts for personal use has resulted in an arrest or other legal problems.

But as previously said, it is against the law to share or sell your modafinil supply.

Numerous trustworthy suppliers of nootropics, like modafinil, are knowledgeable about the regulations and legal framework in which they operate. You will receive a full refund or a reshipment of your item in the unlikely event that a customs agent seizes your online order.

Remember that some sellers might not ship to your nation or might have shipping schedules that don’t meet your requirements. As a result, you will need to choose a supplier who can deliver Modafinil to your nation of residence.


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Armodafinil is more commonly recognized by the brand name Nuvigil, while modafinil is typically available in pharmacies under a number of names, including Provigil and Alertec. They do, however, also come in a large range of generic forms.

When feasible, we strongly advise using generic Modafinil or Armodafinil. It is not only significantly less expensive, but it also has the same pharmacological properties and composition, meaning that the anticipated cognitive advantages are the same [26].

There are a few well-known generic brands of modafinil and armodafinil that are readily available for purchase online.

There are just two generic brands of modafinil that have been repeatedly shown to be reliable and effective:

Modalert is strongly advised for people who have used smart medicines in the past. This SUN Pharmaceuticals-produced generic version of modafinil is the strongest and most durable one available.

Modvigil: This medication is more appropriate for people who are just starting to use smart medications and have a limited budget. It is just as potent as Modalert but has less long-lasting cognitive-enhancing effects.
Similarly, consumers of nootropics purchasing Armodafinil online will also see that two well-known generic products are frequently featured on a number of vendor websites:

Waklert: The strongest and most durable generic version of Armodafinil available is known as the “Modalert” to Armodafinil. It is a Sun Pharmaceuticals product that can improve cognitive function for 8 to 10 hours without interfering with regular sleep patterns.

Artvigil: Armodafinil’s “Modvigil” counterpart. Put another way, it is not as effective as Waklert and has shorter-lasting cognitive-boosting benefits. This option, which is made by HAB Pharmaceuticals, is ideal for people who want Armodafinil at a reduced cost.

Both SUN Pharmaceuticals and HAB Pharmaceuticals are reputable Indian companies that have been producing Armodafinil and Modafinil for a number of years. They have given consumers access to the best generic medications on the market.


As was previously mentioned in the “Legality” section, each nation decides how to classify and control modafinil differently.

This is wholly dependent on how their health authorities have assessed the scientific data supporting or refuting the use of modafinil as a medication.


It is reasonable to anticipate, though, that the vast majority of nations will forbid you from being able to lawfully purchase modafinil without a valid prescription from a physician. Additionally, you will need to visit a reputable pharmacy in person to make your purchase.

There are a few exceptions to this general rule, since you can purchase modafinil over-the-counter without a prescription in some nations, such as Mexico.

It is ultimately your responsibility to become aware of the modern laws and regulations in your country.

You’ll be able to decide through your research if getting a prescription for modafinil or buying it online is better for you.


The discovery of Adrafinil, the metabolic precursor of modafinil, by two medicinal chemists working at Lafon Laboratories in 1974 in France represents the beginning of the drug’s history.

Its effectiveness, lack of sedation, and lack of adverse effects—withdrawal, jitters, etc.—that are frequently linked to amphetamine-containing medications like Adderall attracted a lot of attention [27].

One of the neurophysiologists employed by the same business, Michel Jouvet, found that the main metabolic byproduct of Adrafinil was modafinil. Modafinil was discovered to be significantly more efficacious and faster-acting than Adrafinil after being given to narcoleptic individuals. Under the brand name Modiodal, Modafinil was authorized in France in 1994 as a treatment for narcolepsy.

The Food and Drug Administration licensed the use of modafinil for the treatment of narcolepsy in 1998 under the Provigil brand, following the pharmaceutical company Cephalon’s acquisition of an exclusive license from Lafon to manufacture the drug in the US.

Provigil was not authorized until 2003 to treat shift work sleep disorder and excessive daytime drowsiness in patients with obstructive sleep apnea [28].

In addition to being widely utilized in the military to keep sleep-deprived soldiers engaged and awake, modafinil has also been openly acknowledged for use by well-known celebrities like Tim Ferris and Dave Asprey. Although it is prohibited from being taken during competitive sporting events, athletes including Barry Bonds and Kelli White have acknowledged using modafinil.


If modafinil weren’t incredibly successful, it wouldn’t have the reputation it does now on a global scale.

In high-stakes situations where a mental edge might mean the difference between winning and losing, modafinil is the best smart medicine for people seeking a consistent cognitive advantage.

Modafinil is a clever medication that has been shown to provide limitless energy, laser focus, and sustained motivation. As such, it needs to be considered by all. There aren’t many nootropics on the market that have the same beneficial side effects and safety profile as modafinil, but they can nonetheless supercharge the brain.

The NZT-48 tablet from the film Limitless is as close to a real-life equivalent as modafinil gets. It seems logical that authors and students would seek it out since it enables them to access tremendous levels of perseverance and vigilance, which allows them to complete larger amounts of worthwhile work in shorter amounts of time. Who wouldn’t desire that?

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3. The Real Limitless Drug Isn’t Just for Lifehackers Anymore. Retrieved July 19, 2020.

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7. Jean-Pierre P, Morrow GR, Roscoe JA, et al. A phase 3 randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind, clinical trial of the effect of modafinil on cancer-related fatigue among 631 patients receiving chemotherapy: a University of Rochester Cancer Center Community Clinical Oncology Program Research base study. Cancer. 2010;116(14):3513-3520. doi:10.1002/cncr.25083

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10. Kaser M, Deakin JB, Michael A, et al. Modafinil Improves Episodic Memory and Working Memory Cognition in Patients With Remitted Depression: A Double-Blind, Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Study. Biol Psychiatry Cogn Neurosci Neuroimaging. 2017;2(2):115-122. doi:10.1016/j.bpsc.2016.11.009

11. Young JW, Geyer MA. Action of modafinil–increased motivation via the dopamine transporter inhibition and D1 receptors?. Biol Psychiatry. 2010;67(8):784-787. doi:10.1016/j.biopsych.2009.12.015

12. Taneja I, Haman K, Shelton RC, Robertson D. A randomized, double-blind, crossover trial of modafinil on mood. J Clin Psychopharmacol. 2007;27(1):76-79. doi:10.1097/jcp.0b013e31802eb7ea

13. Wesensten NJ. Effects of modafinil on cognitive performance and alertness during sleep deprivation. Curr Pharm Des. 2006;12(20):2457-2471. doi:10.2174/138161206777698819

14. Walsh JK, Randazzo AC, Stone KL, Schweitzer PK. Modafinil improves alertness, vigilance, and executive function during simulated night shifts. Sleep. 2004;27(3):434-439. doi:10.1093/sleep/27.3.434

15. Estrada A, Kelley AM, Webb CM, Athy JR, Crowley JS. Modafinil as a replacement for dextroamphetamine for sustaining alertness in military helicopter pilots. Aviat Space Environ Med. 2012;83(6):556-564. doi:10.3357/asem.3129.2012

16. Pigeau R, Naitoh P, Buguet A, et al. Modafinil, d-amphetamine and placebo during 64 hours of sustained mental work. I. Effects on mood, fatigue, cognitive performance and body temperature. J Sleep Res. 1995;4(4):212-228. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2869.1995.tb00172.x

17. Murillo-Rodríguez E, Barciela Veras A, Barbosa Rocha N, Budde H, Machado S. An Overview of the Clinical Uses, Pharmacology, and Safety of Modafinil. ACS Chem Neurosci. 2018;9(2):151-158. doi:10.1021/acschemneuro.7b00374

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19. Drug Scheduling. Retrieved July 21, 2020.

20. WALLET CARD 2018 – U.S. Anti-Doping Agency. Retrieved July 19, 2020.

21. Modafinil and modafinil analogues: free radical mechanism of the eugeroic and cognitive enhancement effect. Retrieved July 21, 2020.

22. Gerrard P, Malcolm R. Mechanisms of modafinil: A review of current research. Neuropsychiatr Dis Treat. 2007;3(3):349-364.

23. MODAFINIL. Retrieved July 18, 2020.

24. McClellan JK, Spencer CM. Modafinil. Mol Diag Ther. 1998;9:311-324. doi: 10.2165/00023210-199809040-00006

25. Hockenhull J, Wood DM, Dargan PI. The Availability of Modafinil and Methylphenidate Purchased from the Internet in the United Kingdom Without a Prescription. Subst Use Misuse. 2020;55(1):56-65. doi:10.1080/10826084.2019.1654516

26. Generic Drugs, Are They as Good as Brand Names? Retrieved July 20, 2020.

27. Billiard M, Broughton R. Modafinil: its discovery, the early European and North American experience in the treatment of narcolepsy and idiopathic hypersomnia, and its subsequent use in other medical conditions. Sleep Med. 2018;49:69-72. doi:10.1016/j.sleep.2018.05.027

28. Modafinil: A Chronology of Three Decades. Retrieved July 21, 2020.

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