Dimethylaminuethanol – or DMAE – is a precursor of a neurotransmitter, acethylcholine, and is naturally produced by the human brain. There are several DMAE products on the market, targeted for either oral or topical use. The oral products are used as memory-enhancing supplements, whereas the topical creams are used to reduce the appearance of skin aging.
DMAE oral supplements cost around $4 to $20 for a 100-capsule bottle as of February 2011, and there are several brands to choose from. DMAE is suggested to increase brain’s choline supply and therefore, optimize the acethylcholine neurotransmitter levels. Studies published in several scientific journals showed that DMAE use improves memory, enhances brain activity, increases energy levels and reduces depression. People with attention deficit disorder, dementia, autism and depression might benefit of DMAE supplements.
According to studies done by Haug, et. al. and Sergio, DMAE supplements cause headaches, insomnia, and muscle tension. However, these symptoms usually disappear when the dosage is reduced. Start with a low dose and slowly increase it to the therapeutic levels to prevent side effects. According to study done by Fisman, et. al., DMAE might also cause retardation, increase confusion and elevate blood-pressure in patients with Alzheimer’s disease. Due to the stimulatory nature of DMAE, people with bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, anxiety disorder and epilepsy should not use DMAE supplements.