GABA (alpha aminobutyric acid) is a neurotransmitter in the brain that serves to block nerve impulses and regulate excitability.
So, it helps you to relax, become less anxious and increase focus. GABA is the brain’s natural Valium.
What are the benefits of GABA?
Because GABA block nerve impulses, it prevent over stimulation of the nervous system, hence it help the brain and the nervous system. Below are some of the functions and benefits:
- Increase alpha brain wave promoting clear thinking and focus.
- Helps the body to make endorphin and serotonin, which are the feel good hormones and put you in good mood.
- Helps the pituitary gland to make growth hormone.
- Promotes muscle growth and burn fats.
- Stabilises blood pressure.
- Reduce Attention Deficit Syndrome Disease( ADHD)
What are the factors that affect GABA production in the brain?
- Reduce level of glutamic acid / glutamate, which are precursor of GABA.
- Chronic stress
- Lack of sleep
- Low progesterone
- Exposure to mercury, lead and electromagnetic radiation
- Alcohol withdrawal
- Too much caffeine
- Too much loud noises.
Supplementation of GABA at a dosage of 800 mg a day has been found to help lowers anxiety. However, there is a concern of oral intake of GABA as a supplement, whether it actually penetrate through the blood brain barrier into the brain cells and the nervous system or not.
Some foods help to increase the production of GABA in the body, Hence, they help the body reduce anxiety and increase focus. So, one of the primary strategy would be to eat enough of the types of food that will do that.
1) Green tea
Green tea contains an amino acid, L-Theanine, which helps to create alpha brain wave state in the brain. Theanine increase the transport of glutamate into brain cells, which facilitate more production of GABA in the brain. Amongst the different types of tea, Matcha green tea has the highest content of amino acid L-Theanine.
L-Theanine can cross the blood brain barrier more easily than GABA itself. So supplementation of L-Theanine help to increase the production of GABA in the brain cells. A good source of L-Theanine is Bios Life E, a product from Unicity, which is smart energy.
3) GABA Stimulating Food
Food that have ingredients such as glutamic acid and glutamate, which are precursors for the production of GABA in the brain:
Complex carbohydrates are whole grains, fruits and vegetables that are not processed. They are more difficult to digest and have a high source of glutamic acid and glutamate. Examples of such food are almond, nuts, beef liver, broccoli, mackerel fish, rice bran, spinach and walnuts.
Vitamin B complex, in particular, B6 and B12, also help boost the production of GABA in the brain. Food that has a rich source of Vitamin B complex are banana, figs, broccoli, kale and spinach.
5) Fermented Foods
GABA is produced by lactobacillus and monascus bacteria in fermented food such as kimchi, yoghurt, cheese and soy bean.
As you can see the benefits of GABA in your brain and well-being. So, you can use the above ways to relieve anxiety , be in good mood, and focus.
Do you know of any other ways to boost GABA in your brain? Share with me your thoughts in the comment box below.
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