How to Stop Anxiety with L-Theanine
Stress, anxiety, panic attacks - they are killers. Killers of mood. Killers of emotions. Killers of social ability. Killers of physical health. Killers of mental health.
Anxiety causes feelings of fear, paranoia, and debilitates our enjoyment of life. Stress brings on anxiety. The combination of stress and anxiety can bring on a panic disorder.
Many of us take anti-depressants and/or anti-anxiety medications prescribed by our doctor. While we should follow doctor’s orders, we should not fear investigating natural alternatives.
On one of my trips to Eureka Springs, Arkansas, I came across Dr. Fain’s Herbal Shop. At the time, school was about to start, and I had several other things on my plate. I felt like I was stressed to the max. I was anxious and felt panic attacks coming in waves.
When I walked into the shop, the knowledgeable assistant was able to help me immediately. “You need L-theanine, also known as theanine. You will take it any time you want, and it will help you relax without making you sleepy.”
"Will it make me hyper or jittery?" I asked.
"No, the exact opposite, and it is safe to take at high and low doses," she responded.
Really? Sounds too good to be true, but she was correct.
What is L-Theanine?
According to drugs.com, L-theanine is a “Gamma-ethylamino-L-glutamic acid” that is extracted from green tea leafs. A simpler way of putting it is that L-theanine is an amino acid found in tea leaves. When you are enjoying a cup or glass of tea, you are ingesting small amounts of L-theanine.
Tea is second only to water as the favorite choice of drink. You would need to drink 6 – 8 servings of tea to receive approximately 200 mg of L-theanine, which is the recommended dose to reduce feelings of stress and anxiety.
How L-Theanine Works
When L-theanine is taken, it interacts with a chemical in our brains known as gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA). It increases the GABA in our brains, which has a natural calming effect on our systems reducing feelings of stress and anxiety.
L-theanine also increases the release of Serotonin into our bloodstreams. Serotonin helps us stay balanced to ward off anxiety. Its release also creates a natural calming effect without causing drowsiness.
L-Theanine neither makes you feel hyper or sleepy. It can be taken any time of day. Because it is simply a tea leaf extract, it is safe to take periodically throughout the day. Also, because it is so natural to our bodies, there have been no studies of it interacting negatively with other drugs, but you should talk to your doctor before taking it if you are pregnant or in chemotherapy treatments.
Benefits of Taking L-Theanine
Other than relieving stress and anxiety, L-Theanine can help with a variety of other ailments that are caused by stress and anxiety.
- help lower blood pressure
- help mood swings
- help women with PMS
- help concentration
- help memory
- help support the immune system
- help increase dopamine in the brain
The list can go on. Stress and anxiety can create many physical and mental issues in our bodies. Controlling them naturally with a natural supplement like L-Theanine can only help in calming stress and anxiety and giving your body the proper chemicals to help ward off unhealthy reactions.
- skin sensitivity
- racing heart
- chest pain
- muscle stiffness
- shortness of breath
- brain fog
- teeth gritting or grinding
- fear of losing control
- fear of everything
- feeling trapped
- crying with no apparent reason
- no feelings
- uncharacteristically blunt
- detached from people and things you love
- ominous feeling of doom
- dry mouth
- sleepless nights
- bizarre dreams
- worry, worry, worry
Symptoms of Anxiety
Symptoms of an anxiety attack, also known as panic attack, are too many to list here and can come in a variety of combinations or can show as just one. Here are a few to provide awareness:
- chest tightness
- blushing or feeling heat in your face and body
- fear for self, others, and the world
- body tremors
- feelings of being helpless
- dizziness or light headedness
- unnatural often use of the bathroom for bowel and bladder movements
- joint pain
- feeling cold or chilled
- hair loss
As we can see from this list, anxiety is not something to be ignored. It will cause physical and mental damage and possibly death. If experiencing many of these symptoms, a physician should be consulted.
L-theanine will help calm the body but if anxiety has been tearing down the body's ability to fight, more serious problems may have evolved.
Using L-theanine when stress, anxiety, and panic begin to start is one way of preventing levels of damaging health problems.
L-Theanine for Anxiety and Panic Attacks
Being Overwhelmed - the Author's Experience
As I said earlier, I stumbled upon L-theanine in Dr. Fain's Herbal Shop. I am so glad I did. I take it every night before I go to bed just to keep it in my system. I am also one of those people who will lie down while that proverbial squirrel is still running on its wheel. Time for a tranquilizer, Mr. Squirrel!
Some people say they have replaced their Valium with L-Theanine. I have never taken Valium, but I do choose the homeopathic natural over the prescription.
I have a fear of flying. I go to New York each year to visit my brother. This year I had my L-theanine, and I am so glad. I felt a horrible panic attack coming on, with many of the symptoms listed above. I sporadically took three 200 mg L-Theanine capsules throughout the day to keep the anxiety at bay. It helped tremendously. I got on the plane without compunction.
Of course, I had to return home, so I repeated the process of taking the capsules before boarding my return flight.
I actually carry L-theanine with me everywhere. It makes anxiety and panic disorders so much easier to manage. I also share it with friends. My girlfriend had just found out her husband was leaving her, and I gave her two 200 mg of L-Theanine. It was not an answer to her problems with her husband but it calmed her down so she could think about how she needed to handle the situation.
I love the fact that it is safe to take a few L-Theanine when serious anxiety is overwhelming me. I could not do that with Valium without risking a drug overdose. L-theanine is fast acting - kicking in about 20 minutes after taking it. It has been a true life saver for me.
L-Theanine and Gaba Help Anxiety
What is GABA and why is it important? Identifies natural food sources for inducing GABA. Aids in reducing anxiety, maintaining muscle tone, improves sleep and mood.
SHolland10 does not recommend taking L-Theanine if you have mental or physical issues that need the attention of a medical professional. This hub only explains her research and experience and is not meant to take the place of a doctor's advice.
Did you find this information helpful?
A Pharmacist's Perspective on L-Theanine
© 2012 Susan Holland
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