BestReviews is reader-supported and may earn an affiliate commission. Details
Expert Shopper Health & Wellness

Best citicoline supplement

Which citicoline supplements are best?

Citicoline supplements may improve brain activity and prevent memory loss. Additionally, numerous studies confirm that it may aid in general brain function. Still, it’s a good idea to research citicoline’s benefits, risks and most popular forms before buying a supplement.

If you're considering taking a citicoline supplement to give your brain a boost, Jarrow Formulas Citicoline, CDP Choline Supplements are an effective option with no wheat, gluten or dairy.

What to know before you buy a citicoline supplement

What is citicoline?

According to the National Institutes of Health, citicoline is a compound that may help with certain neurodegenerative diseases. Neuroprotective compounds like citicoline help protect nerve cells against damage and degeneration. For example, glaucoma patients with mild visual issues had improved retinal function after using citicoline for two years. Many patients with mild vascular cognitive impairment scored higher on mental examinations after using citicoline for 9 months. The compound can improve mood and memory.

How does citicoline work?

For a while, it was thought that this supplement could help people who suffered from strokes and brain injuries, but this has been proven false. After ingesting citicoline, it breaks down into cytidine and choline. Interestingly, these components are transported to the brain separately, where they then recombine to form citicoline in the brain cells.

Is citicoline safe?

According to the NIH, the compound has negligible toxicity and no significant side effects. Still, talk to your doctor before taking citicoline if you have a medical condition, are pregnant or are taking any medications. It’s probably best to avoid the supplement if you’re under 18 years old. Some users reported feeling confused, depressed or nauseous after taking the compound for extended periods.

How to take citicoline

Some supplements come in large capsules that may be hard to swallow. If you have trouble swallowing supplements, consider buying small tablets that melt in your mouth. Many people take supplements before breakfast or lunch, as it prevents them from upsetting their stomachs.

What to look for in a quality citicoline supplement

Proper dosage

According to the NIH, humans can safely take over 500 milligrams of citicoline each day. Still, many users felt that even 250 milligrams of citicoline per day was too much. However, many supplements have at least 250 milligrams. If that proves to be too much for you, consider purchasing tablets that you can cut in half easily.


Many people have dietary restrictions or preferences. If you don’t want to consume animal-based ingredients, you’ll want to ensure you buy vegan capsules. It’s essential to ensure the supplement doesn’t contain any allergens that may negatively impact you.

Number of capsules

Most supplement bottles contain 30, 90 or 120 capsules. If you want to get the most bang for your buck, consider buying a bottle that comes with many supplement capsules or tablets.

Positive effects

Some supplements are more effective than others. It’s a good idea to choose a brand with numerous positive reviews that suggest the supplement is effective. Avoid brands that seem to induce nausea, diarrhea and other adverse side effects.

Trusted brand

Supplement claims aren’t often tested before the supplement is sold. It’s a good idea to buy supplements from a trusted brand whose claims have been tested by a third party.

How much you can expect to spend on citicoline supplements

Citicoline supplements can cost $17-$35, depending on the brand and quantity of supplements included.

Citicoline supplement FAQ

Do citicoline supplements have a bad taste or smell?

A. In many cases, citicoline supplements have a strong chemical smell and taste. If you find the scent overpowering, consider taking them with juice or another flavored drink.

How long does it take to notice citicoline’s benefits?

A. Some people notice benefits immediately. Other individuals feel it takes a few weeks to see positive effects. Many studies suggest it could take more than two months before citicoline yields any noticeable benefits.

Does citicoline increase your dopamine production?

A. Many studies have suggested that citicoline positively affects your mood due to increased dopamine production.

Can you take citicoline by itself?

A. Yes. Many people take citicoline supplements with Alpha-GPC, but the effects of mixing these two supplements haven’t been widely studied. If supplements often upset your stomach, consider taking them with food.

What’s the best citicoline to buy?

Top citicoline supplement

Jarrow Formulas, Citicoline, CDP Choline, 250 milligrams, 120 Capsules

What you need to know: These gentle supplements don’t contain soy, wheat, dairy, egg, gluten or peanuts.

What you’ll love: This bottle contains 120 capsules. Each capsule contains 250 milligrams of citicoline. Many users felt this supplement improved their attention and memory. These capsules are small and easy to swallow. Most users didn’t notice any side effects. Many users take up to two of these capsules every day.

What you should consider: Some users felt these capsules contained too much citicoline.

Where to buy: Sold by iHerb and Amazon

Top citicoline supplement for the money

Nature's Bounty Brain Focus, Nootropic Supplement

What you need to know: These chewable tablets dissolve in your mouth with a cooling sensation, and they taste good, making them easy to take.

What you’ll love: These supplements have a pleasant lemon flavor. Many users noticed these supplements improved their concentration and mood. Most users felt these supplements didn’t hurt their stomachs.

What you should consider: These aren’t as effective as other supplements.

Where to buy: Sold by iHerb and Amazon

Worth checking out

Double Wood CDP Choline (Citicoline) Supplement

What you need to know: These supplements contain 300 milligrams of citicoline in each capsule.

What you’ll love: These capsules are non-GMO and gluten-free. They are small enough for most people to swallow easily. Many users said they felt these supplements were highly effective.

What you should consider: These capsules have a strong smell and taste.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


Sign up here to receive the BestReviews weekly newsletter for useful advice on new products and noteworthy deals.

Cody Stewart writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

Share this post: