Bacopa Monnieri Benefits Those with Anxiety

Bacopa Monnieri
Bacopa Monnieri is a flowering plant.

Bacopa Monnieri is a nootropic herb that is known for its benefits as an anxiolytic.  It is highly ranked in Ayurvedic remedies, and is incredibly powerful when it comes to combating anxiety.

 

Bacopa Monnieri extract has even been shown to work better than traditional approaches to reducing anxiety because it increases cognition and alertness rather than reducing it [1].  Bacopa benefits people across a wide age range, and has been shown to increase memory as well as improve mood.

How Does Bacopa Monnieri Work?

 

The anti-anxiety effects of Bacopa are still being researched, but can be attributed to a combination of saponins in the herb and its ability to increase serotonin.  Saponins are chemical compounds that are part of a plant’s immune system.  When they are consumed by humans, they can have effects like anxiety reduction and improved mood [2].  The supplement helps to improve neural communication by helping nerve cells send out signals.  Basically, it helps your brain to have better control over its reactions, which helps to manage stress and anxiety faster.

 

Because Bacopa also causes an increase in serotonin production, it results in a surge of “feel-good” hormones that aid in anxiety reduction.  Bacopa Monnieri is a great option as an anxiolytic nootropic, and a powerful one at that, because it affects the mental condition and can improve not only mood, but memory and performance as well.

Bacopa Monnieri Benefits

 

Finding the correct Bacopa Monnieri dosage benefits those suffering from anxiety
This supplement can help relieve anxiety.

While Bacopa Monnieri is powerful as an anxiolytic, it truly is most effective because it is neither a stimulant nor a depressant.  While other supplements for anxiety may cause drowsiness or overstimulation, Bacopa does neither of these.

 

It will improve cognitive function rather than impairing it for the sake of reducing stress.  While Bacopa can act as a mental sedative, it won’t cause tiredness and will instead focus the mind.

 

Bacopa Monnieri is also an antioxidant, protecting cells from damage and preventing their breakdown.  This is just an added perk to the supplement that can effectively reduce anxiety without causing other negative mental side effects.

Bacopa Monnieri Dosage

 

Dosage will largely depend on the extract of Bacosides. For example, a formulation of 20% Bacosides will call for 750mg once per day. Dosage will also depend on the individual’s levels of stress an anxiety.  The supplement can be taken at any time since it won’t cause drowsiness or overstimulation meaning it won’t interfere with your sleep cycle.

The Bacopa supplement is best taken with food, and can be easily worked into a daily routine by having it with a meal.  In a very short time, adding this supplement every day can help reduce anxiety as well as provide more mental focus and an improved memory.

Sources

 

  1. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23195757
  2. http://phoenixhealth.me/Botanical%20medicine/Bacopa%20for%20the%20Brain.pdf

ALCAR/ALA Stack: Benefits and Side Effects

ALCAR and ALA
ALCAR and ALA can help combat the effects of aging on the brain.

When studying nootropics, you will discover that these supplements have several nuances. You can educate yourself thoroughly on the exact mechanisms of pretty much every available compound, trial them individually, and still barely scratch the surface of smart drug supplementation.

The reason?

Nootropic stacks, or cross-nootropic potentiation. Basically, combine any two or more substances, and you’re going to see effects that go above and beyond what you’d simply expect from one or the other.

Nootropics are complex substances, and the brain is a complex piece of biological machinery. The more compounds you’re ingesting at the same time, the better the chances that you’re going to trigger some unexpected effect.

ALCAR/ALA Benefits

This combination is the concept behind recent trials which suggest that combining ALCAR (acetyl l-carnitine powder) and ALA (alpha lipoic acid) could have dramatically boosted benefits for health and cognition. Continue reading “ALCAR/ALA Stack: Benefits and Side Effects”

Racetams: What They Are, What They Do, and How to Take Them

Racetams are great study aids
Racetams are great study aids

Racetams are derived from piracetam and are the most popular class of cognitive supplement. Because they are derivatives of piracetam, you might expect them to work in the same way, their only difference being their levels of potency in enhancing cognition.

However, it turns out that each offers its own unique range of benefits.

Piracetam

Originally intended to act as a calming agent like GABA, the neurotransmitter it was derived from, piracetam had no effect on relaxation nor did it induce sleepiness. Instead researchers discovered piracetam’s promise as a cognitive agent.
Continue reading “Racetams: What They Are, What They Do, and How to Take Them”

Rhodiola for Relaxation

 

Rhodiola rosea can help you manage your stress
Rhodiola rosea can help you manage your stress

As a student, long days and nights lead to long weeks that don’t seem to end. If you’re not careful, the well of energy begins to run dry and before long you start to feel like you’re completely worn down and stressed out.

What do you do when it’s the middle of the semester, you’re tired of taking caffeine supplements, and you can’t seem to push on any longer? Sure, it would be nice to take a sabbatical and sleep for three days straight or tell professors to give you indefinite extensions on all your work, but that’s not likely to happen.
Continue reading “Rhodiola for Relaxation”

Phenibut vs GABA

While Phenibut and GABA are different supplements, they are very closely related to one another. These two supplements are both used for effects that range from cognitive enhancement to stress reduction and even to relaxation. In fact, anyone who is looking to help improve or balance out their moods, or even improve their effectiveness in the gym might want to seriously consider these supplements. Of course, this raises the ultimate question: Which of these supplements is better?

GABA Benefits:

There are many positive side effects of gaba including boosting mood

GABA, or Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid, is an amino acid which is produced within the brain from glutamate and vitamin B6. While GABA is consideredan amino acid, it is not found in the proteins of the food you eat or in your own body’s store. Almost all of the GABA in your body must be synthesized from stored glutamate. [3]

This supplement is also a neurotransmitter, a powerful brain chemical. In fact, it is the chief inhibitory neurotransmitter within the body that allows for balancing out other chemicals and processes that may cause neuron over excitability. When your body lacks GABA, chances are the neurons in your brain will fire off too quickly which contrary to how it sounds, will keep you from focusing, cause anxiety, and worsen depression.[3]

The primary benefit of GABA is to help balance out normal moods. Additionally, it helps to directly regulate muscle tone throughout the body and even supports the production of hormones that are needed to build muscle. GABA also helps neurons within the brain communicate more efficiently with each other. It is also reported to help with mental clarity, attention, and focus. [3]

What is Phenibut?

Phenibut is essentially a derived formulation of GABA. It is GABA plus a phenyl group molecule ring. The reason for this addition is that it helps the supplement to cross over the blood-brain barrier. The main problem with pure GABA is the fact that it is much more difficult for it to cross over this barrier and actually enter into the central nervous system. [4]

Phenibut Benefits

Once Phenibut gets into the nervous system, it has many of the same effects as GABA. Thus, Phenibut helps to calm the mind and leads to relaxation, reduction of stress, and a balancing of moods. It has also been shown to increase the body’s levels of dopamine. [1]

There are many positive phenibut side effects including relaxation
Phenibut helps you relax and unwind.

The main draw of phenibut is its potency. The fact that it absorbs better than pure GABA means that the effects are much stronger and take significantly less time to notice. [4]

It is also worth noting that phenibut is a little more versatile in its uses than ordinary GABA boosters. In fact, many body builders and weight lifters use Phenibut powder as a pre-workout supplement because it helps them to maintain mental clarity and enhances concentration and focus during their workouts. [4]

GABA Side Effects

Both supplements do have possible side effects that can usually be avoided with proper usage. However, if you’re worried about possible complications, here is a side-by-side comparison to help you determine if either one has a negative effect that could be a deal breaker.

When it comes to GABA, there are a few things to keep in mind. Always keep to the recommended dose, for one. While not guaranteed, some reports have shown that high dosages can lead to skin flushing or tingling. [3]

More importantly however would be to avoid GABA if you suffer from serious depression. GABA is mainly used to calm down heavy anxiety, but may trigger an episode in those suffering from severe forms of depression. If you suffer from this type of depression, a serotonin booster may be more useful than a GABA booster. [3]

Phenibut Side Effects

Along with the side effects that a GABA booster may present, phenibut has been reported to be somewhat habit forming and can cause withdrawal symptoms in heavy users. This can include nervousness and shakiness, psychomotor agitation, feeling easily annoyed and irritated, fatigue, anxiety, poor appetite, heart palpitations, nausea, insomnia, and feeling tense. [4]

These effects can usually be avoided by taking a recommended dose or lower and not using it more than a few times a week at most. If you do experience these side effects they are usually reported as lasting 5-7 days. [4]

Conclusion—Phenibut or GABA?

So which supplement is better? Phenibut is certainly much more powerful and also faster acting. Since this supplement is better able to cross over the blood-brain barrier, this could be a very important factor. However, the possible side effects of misuse are also a little steeper.

In contrast, GABA is less potent and should probably be taken with other supplements to ensure that it has a ‘carrier’ in order to enable it to enter into the central nervous system.

There is no one best answer to this question, as there are numerous factors at play here and what works for some will not necessarily work for all. As long as you stick to recommended dosages and use caution, either supplement is a perfectly viable option. However, for combating pure anxiety, phenibut comes out ahead for its potency and versatility.

Sources

  1. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11830761
  2. http://www.lef.org/magazine/mag2011/mar2011_The-Chemistry-of-Calm_01.htm
  3. http://overcomingyouranxiety.net/naturalanxietyremedies/gaba-for-anxiety/
  4. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phenibut

Top 3 Supplements for Better Sleep and Relaxation

supplements to help with sleepSleep is becoming more of an issue for an increasing number of Americans these days. This problem is likely due to higher levels of stress at home and work, tougher economic conditions, lack of proper diet (who has the time anymore?), and many other factors seemingly beyond the scope of our control. Would you be surprised to learn that there are a number of all-natural supplements that can help lead to improved sleep and relaxation? How about if some of these supplements could even aid in reducing levels of stress? The top three picks for these benefits are discussed below. Continue reading “Top 3 Supplements for Better Sleep and Relaxation”

How Does Resveratrol Cross the Blood-Brain Barrier and Why This Crossing Makes Resveratrol More Effective

resveratrol for increased brain healthResveratrol is one of the most well-known supplements around despite it being rather late to the party. We all are likely aware that this supplement acts as a potent anti-oxidant supplement and has a lot of incredible health benefits such as potentially even being able to increase life span. One of the most interesting things about this supplement, however, may be related to its ability to cross over the blood-brain barrier, which is simply a way for a substance to enter into the central nervous system.

Resveratrol Health Benefits:

The Resveratrol supplement is a natural anti-oxidant found in grape skins, berries, cocoa, and peanuts. It has even been compared to a modern fountain of youth since it also appears to have the potential to slow down the aging process in human cells. Studies have been conducted on this supplement at a wide variety of research facilities including Harvard Medical School. It is considered to play a very positive role in supporting cardiovascular health, insulin uptake, and even blood flow to the brain. There is also a lot of evidence to indicate it can be very helpful in controlling metabolism and leading to healthy weight loss. Continue reading “How Does Resveratrol Cross the Blood-Brain Barrier and Why This Crossing Makes Resveratrol More Effective”

PEA and Theanine Combo to Relax

green tea contains theanineFor anyone who is feeling stressed out, anxious, or overly tired, there are some natural supplements that can help. Two of these are PEA (Phenylethylamine) and L-Theanine. They both show many beneficial effects which include elevating mood, combating stress, and improving cognitive abilities. A closer examination into both of these supplements can help us understand why and how.

What is Phenylethylamine?

This supplement is actually a derivative of the amino acid Phenylalanine which is found in chocolate and a number of other food sources. There is much evidence to suggest that it is able to influence and improve mood. This effect, along with several additional benefits, are thought to be caused by the supplement having a modulating effect on several brain chemicals including Dopamine which is believed responsible for regulating mood and movement functions. But wait, there’s more!

DMAE Benefits and Dosage for Better Sleep

A proper dmae dosage benefits those looking for help sleepingDMAE is a naturally occurring brain compound that has also been made into a supplement form. This supplement has a number of different uses and benefits, with many users reporting it to be one of the best things they have ever tried. There is evidence suggesting that it can help everything from your mood to how much mental energy you feel. Sleep is also a big issue today. It seems as if too many people are not able to get enough sleep, fall asleep quickly enough, or stay asleep and wake feeling rested. Well, DMAE may just be an interesting solution to these problems. But wait, there’s more!

Top Supplements to Help Reduce Stress

nootropics to help reduce stressMost of the nootropic supplements focus on cognitive functions such as memory, learning, and reason. However, many of these supplements have also proven to be effective in the area of stress relief. Nootropics with this effect are able to improve one’s mood, make them feel relaxed, and lessen worry-related symptoms. Let’s take a closer look at how these supplements work to reduce stress and what are some of the most effective nootropics in this regard.

How Supplements Work to Reduce Stress

Stress can be caused by one or more factors: mental, physical, work, finances, or other day-to-day problems. Scientifically, stress is the result of a deficiency of GABA (gamma aninobutryic acid) which is the brain’s natural sedative. When GABA levels are low, nerve cells become overactive, and nervousness and stress result. In extreme cases, this deficiency may cause panic attacks.

Supplements that help to reduce stress therefore work by increasing the levels of GABA in the brain and therefore make one feel more relaxed and at ease. Continue reading “Top Supplements to Help Reduce Stress”