Good quality Korean Ginseng improves our health in many ways, both mental and physical. As an adaptogen it improves our immune system; as a source or energy it provides steady, longer acting endurance rather than a fast (but short lived) boost. Other beneficial substances that might be used with Ginseng include:

Guarana:  a red fruit that contains caffeine in its seeds. However, it is superior to regular caffeine because it also contains theophylline and theobromine, which prevent the caffeine’s over-stimulating effect. This combination proves effective for those wanting a longer term energy boost that won’t cause anxiety.

Green tea and any other tea that contains theanine are useful for concentration. Like the combination in Guarana the caffeine and theanine complement each other to produce focus and concentration rather than jittery energy. Ideally there should be two parts theanine to one part caffeine (scientific studies and opinions vary); though natural teas tend to have this ratio reversed. Supplementing some extra theanine might be the best option.

Cacao powder is an unrefined version of cocoa powder, the main ingredient of chocolate. While regular chocolate does have a few health benefits this raw version is far superior, being an antioxidant, a good source of nutrients and a solid source of energy. Research shows that it is best consumed without dairy, which inhibits absorption.

Lion’s mane Mushroom: A fungus that seems to benefit concentration, immunity and memory. It also seems to benefit curiosity and wellbeing, making it a great treatment for depression.

It is best to avoid artificial energy sources such as carbonated energy drinks, even as a few of the ingredients of these drinks can be beneficial. It is usually best to try the natural sources of these beneficial substances, avoiding the processing and additives that many well compromise heath.

Sometimes it can be tricky to differentiate between supplements, drugs and additives. A reasonable guide Is to think about healthy living rather than forcing any improvement. Anything that gets us closer to optimal performance is usually a good thing; anything that pushes us too hard, that substitutes for a good night sleep rather than allowing for it, tends to be bad, at least if used more than occasionally. Good nutrition, good sleep and some reliable natural supplements make for a better and more enjoyable lifestyle. The idea is to be more fully human, and not fool ourselves into thinking we are more than human.