Theanine for Anxiety Reduction

Anxiety affects a reported 4 million people nationwide and doesn’t show any signs of slowing. Chances are you or someone you know has dealt with anxiety on a daily basis. Whether you have severe anxiety troubles or just occasionally feel tense, there are numerous products on the market to assist you. The downside, however, is that many of them can be dangerous, addictive, or expensive. When offering advice for anxiety troubles, there is one natural supplement often overlooked that has been used for hundreds of years to safely provide a calming effect without breaking the bank. You can buy theanine supplement for as little as around $2 online.

L-theanine is an amino acid that is naturally found in tea [1]. L-theanine easily crosses the blood-brain barrier and has the wonderful psychoactive properties of reducing psychological and physiological stress [2]. When it enters the brain, l-theanine inhibits the transmitters in the brain that cause anxiety and increase dopamine levels. Generally speaking, theanine reduces anxiety and improves your sense of wellbeing. Individuals use theanine supplement to reduce anxiety on a daily basis. It is interesting to note that l-theanine has been shown to increase alpha brain waves [3]. These are the waves produced by the brain when it’s functioning at an optimal state for wakeful relaxation, so l-theanine actually impacts how your brain works.

With a reduction in anxiety and an overall calming effect come multiple benefits. For day-to-day activities, you can expect to go through them in a calmer, relaxed state and with improved brain function. After taking l-theanine, some users reported feelings of calmness in situations where they would normally feel anxious. In fact, it’s so effective at reducing general anxiety, it was shown in clinical trials to reduce anxiety even in patients with schizophrenia [4]. L-theanine can also be taken in conjunction with caffeine to help smooth the caffeine jitters and produce a sense of relaxed focus. The relaxing properties aren’t limited to the daytime either. Theanine supplement can be taken in the evening to calm your mind and help you fall asleep faster.

In addition to reducing anxiety, there are a number of emerging clinical and anecdotal benefits of l-theanine. These include [3]:

  • Improved immune system function
  • Enhanced memory and learning
  • Protection of neurons in the brain
  • Improved efficacy of cancer treatments
  • Reduced body fat percentage
  • Lower blood pressure

How Should You Take L-Theanine?

While a small amount of l-theanine can be consumed by drinking green and black tea, the amounts are too minimal to achieve maximum effectiveness. Supplementing l-theanine via capsules or powders is the best way to achieve the best results. Dosage varies from person to person, but start by taking 50mg once or twice a day and increasing until you feel a reduction in anxiety or an increase in your calmness. Many users like to use 100mg 3-4 times daily. High theanine dosages have been safely tested on rats in clinical trials with no adverse effects, so safety at these dosages shouldn’t be a primary concern.

Sources

[1] http://www.ltheanine.net/

[2] http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16930802

[3] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theanine

[4] http://www.stanleyresearch.org/Trial/Drug/awardedtrialdetail.aspx?id=252

Author:

David Johnson is a freelancer with an avid interest in supplements that help relax, enhance mood, and provide cognitive enhancement. Most days he can be found researching innovative ways to bring his readers sounder sleep, better moods, and more.