L-Theanine Calm-plex is a synergistic formula that effectively combines L-Theanine with GABA and 5-HTP for relaxation plus mood support. L-Theanine Calm-Plex uses Suntheanine® brand L-theanine, the purest form of L-theanine available, to deliver maximum calming effects. With 46 international patents Suntheanine® promotes relaxation, reduces stress, anxiety and irritability all without making you feel drowsy. Women can also reduce symptoms of PMS with this innovative formula.
Japanese Green Tea is a powerful antioxidant that is also used to reduce general stress and promote tranquility. One of the main components of green tea is the amino acid L-Theanine. Research has shown that L-Theanine can increase levels of GABA, a brain chemical known for its calming effects, and dopamine, which can promote mood enhancement. L-Theanine is non-drowsy, and may even increase mental focus and concentration as it promotes a stress-free state of mind.
The L-Theanine Relaxation Effect
L-theanine readily crosses the blood-brain barrier of humans and exerts subtle changes in biochemistry. An increase in alpha waves has been documented (see above), and the effect has been compared to getting a massage or taking a hot bath. L-theanine is different from kava-kava in that it doesn't cause drowsiness. Research with human volunteers has demonstrated that L-theanine creates its relaxing effect in approximately 30 to 40 minutes after ingestion. The mechanism behind this effect is two-fold:
1) L-theanine directly stimulates production of alpha brain waves, which creates a deep state of relaxation while maintaining mental alertness.
2) L-theanine appears to play a role in the formation of gamma-aminobutyric acid, better known as GABA. GABA acts as a powerful manager of neurotransmitters and helps maintain relaxed levels of neuron activity.
L-Theanine Relaxation Research
Alpha wave generation in the brain is considered to be an index of relaxation. In one study, 50 females between 18 and 22 years old were divided into high and low general anxiety groups. Each group was given water, 50 mg L-theanine solution, or 200 mg L-theanine solution once a week for two months. Brain waves were measured for 60 minutes after each administration. Within 40 minutes, a significantly greater amount of alpha waves were generated on the brain surface of the L-theanine groups, signifying relaxation without causing drowsiness.*
*Source: Ito K, et al. Effects of L-theanine on the release of alpha brain waves in human volunteers. Nippon Nogeikagaku Kaishi 1998;72:153-7.
In a study done in 1999 at the University of Shizuoka in Japan, several other unique properties of L-theanine were found. The research demonstrated that in addition to facilitating relaxation, L-theanine may benefit learning performance, mental clarity, concentration, and immunity.
Other studies have shown that women taking L-theanine in dosages of 200 mg per day have lower incidence of monthly discomfort. These studies were conducted in cooperation with Taiyo Kagaku Co., University of Shizuoka, and The Family Planning Institute of Japan.
Sources: Ito K, et al. Effects of L-theanine on the release of alpha brain waves in human volunteers. Nippon Nogeikagaku Kaishi 1998;72:153-7. Juneja LR, et al. L-theanine-a unique amino acid of green tea and its relaxation effect in humans. Trends Food Sci Tech 1999;10:199-204.
How L-Theanine Differs From Anti-Stress Herbs
The main difference between L-theanine and anti-stress herbs such as valerian root, kava kava, skullcap, and passion flower (among others), is that it does not cause drowsiness - thereby offering you the benefit of relaxation without sedation. This could be very helpful for patients who want a calming effect while maintaining the ability to perform tasks that require alertness, concentration or mental acuity. In addition, unlike most amino acids, L-theanine can be taken with or without food, and at any time.
5-HTP & GABA: Natural Support for Healthy Neurotransmitter Levels
L-Theanine Calm-Plex contains two additional mood enhancing ingredients called 5-HTP and GABA. These natural compounds work synergistically to help maintain balanced neurotransmitter levels in the brain. Together they support proper memory and nervous function, while promoting a strong sense of well being and relaxation.
5-HTP is manufactured in the body from the amino acid L-Tryptophan and is used to produce the neurotransmitter serotonin. Research has shown serotonin plays a key role in maintaining mood, cognitive function, and neuron communication. Eating foods that contain L-Tryptophan however, does not significantly increase 5-HTP levels. By adding 5-HTP to the L-Theanine formula, the body directly receives the materials it needs to promote healthy serotonin levels, and thus balanced mood. The 10mg dose of 5-HTP in L-Theanine Calm-Plex is not significant enough to cause drowsiness.
GABA is naturally produced from the amino acid glutamine and the sugar glucose. It is concentrated in the hypothalamus area of the brain and is known to play a role in healthy pituitary function, which helps maintain hormone synthesis, proper sleep cycles, and body temperature. GABA primarily functions in the body as a powerful inhibitor of neurotransmitters and to help maintain relaxed levels of neuron activity. Over-stimulated or over-active neurons may lead to feelings of restlessness, irritability, and sleeplessness. GABA inhibits nerve cells from over-firing to promote feelings of calmness and stability.