When life begins to get too stressful or overwhelming, one of the best things you can do is take a pause and make yourself a cup of green tea. Green tea often makes us feel more relaxed without making us want to fall asleep, but what is in green tea that makes this happen?
While many teas are chock full of antioxidants and healthy vitamins, they can also be full of something called L-Theanine. L-Theanine is an amino acid found mostly in green tea, and it might just be the driving force behind tea’s astonishing relaxation powers.
In this article, we’ll take a deeper look at L-Theanine and how it works to help you and your brain succeed.
Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins that help your body build tissues and regulate hormones. Your body naturally produces some amino acids, while others are found in many of the foods you eat. One such amino acid is called L-Theanine (pronounced thee-uh-neen) and is prevalent in most green teas, black teas, and some mushrooms!
L-Theanine was first discovered in the Camellia Sinensis, or the “tea plant,” back in 1949 by Japanese scientist Yajiro Sakato. Although drinking a cup of green tea may be the best natural source of L-Theanine, L-Theanine supplements have started to become more popular because of ease of use (you don’t need to expertly brew a cup of tea every time), and higher concentration levels than naturally found in green tea.
It might not be the most recognizable name on the planet, but some people may know L-Theanine for helping the body sleep, relax, and reduce stress. However, it’s a bit more nuanced than that, and learning more about this little chemical might just help you in big ways.
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L-Theanine and Relaxation
Now that we know green tea and L-Theanine are connected, let’s look into that relationship a little more. One of the best things about drinking green tea is getting a sense of calm and peace without falling asleep, while naturally getting an energy boost from the natural caffeine found in green tea! As opposed to coffee, green tea drinkers often notice that they don’t get overstimulated or experience any jittery feeling. It turns out L-Theanine might be at the center of it all.
Studies suggest that L-Theanine can help you both relax your mind while staying alert and awake. When we are awake but not concentrating, our brain produces something called alpha brain waves. These alpha waves are associated with feelings of calm and rest, and in the study above, it was observed that L-Theanine increased alpha wave production in the brain!
This doesn’t mean you have to go out and buy huge boxes of tea just to find some rest and relaxation, but the next time you’re hoping for peace of mind, you might just want to put on the kettle.
If you’re not the biggest fan of tea, you can also try our new Chilled Out tonic! With L-Theanine, Ashwagandha, and Magnesium working in tandem, this is sure to hit the brakes on your brain and promote relaxation (without the stimulating effects of caffeine found in green tea).
L-Theanine For Coffee Lovers
On its own, L-Theanine can help to calm you down, but when you pair it with caffeine, it produces some interesting results!
In a 2010 study, researchers concluded that a combination of caffeine and L-theanine could potentially increase focus and attentiveness during difficult mental trials. However, it is worth noting that this study used around 100mg of L-Theanine, which is more than you can find in a serving of tea.
In comes the power of adding an L-Theanine supplement to your morning cup of coffee!
For a relaxing start to your day, try some of our non-drowsy Relaxation gummies! Packed with L-Theanine, CBD, and Lemon Balm, these gummies are designed to calm the body and refresh the mind, without putting you to sleep!
The effects of caffeine and L-Theanine are still being studied, but the two may just be a match made in heaven from initial results.
L-Theanine For Sleep
If tea and coffee aren’t really your thing, you can turn to L-Theanine for some help getting to sleep too!!
Beyond the calming and focusing properties associated with L-Theanine, it can be applied as an effective sleep aid, especially for those who might need it most. In another study, researchers studied children with ADHD and observed their responses to L-Theanine.
ADHD is often linked to sleeping problems, and the researchers wanted to see the effect a supplement of L-Theanine might have on the children. In line with other findings, this study found that the supplements improved the children’s sleep quality, and it can likely improve your sleep too!
If you want to try it for yourself, our new Sleepyhead gummy might be for you. By using the combined effects of Melatonin, L-Theanine, and Jujube, our gummies help you find calmer, deeper sleep.
Studies are still ongoing, and we might never have a perfect understanding of L-Theanine, but the information we already have is exciting.
As the world has grown to understand L-Theanine, more efforts have been to utilize this amino acid as best we can. As far as it has been studied, there are no direct side effects from its consumption, which has lead to a boom of new products.
After its initial discovery in tea plants, growers have increased L-Theanine in tea by using shade-grown crops. These leaves have higher chemical levels in them, making them an exciting and fascinating drink to try.
Meanwhile, L-Theanine coffee blends are being marketed to reduce caffeine jitters by capitalizing on the special connection between the two chemicals. For people who love the boost but hate the shakes, this coffee might just change their perception entirely!
We’ve seen the health benefits of L-Theanine first hand, and we’re excited to share them.
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