Volume 9, Issue 3

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 2 of 31 | # 47 | Page 3 NUTRACEUTICALS to Help You Unwind and Sleep Many people are feeling tightly wound these days, with the strains of the pandemic piled on top of normal, everyday aggravations. Occasional stress can leave you feeling tense and frazzled during the day, and that can make it hard to drift off at night. Thankfully, there are natural, clinically backed solutions to ease occasional stress and reset your sleep-wake rhythm so you can sleep peacefully. GABA Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) is a calming neurotransmitter. Healthy levels are linked to positive mood. 1 Pharma GABA ® is a clinically tested, concentrated, and natural form of GABA produced by beneficial Lactobacillus bacteria. It has been shown to increase alpha brain waves, which are linked to a state of calm alertness, within 60 minutes. 2 In one study, Pharma GABA even improved physiological markers of stress in volunteers who were afraid of heights but had to walk over a long suspension bridge. 3 L-Theanine L-theanine is an amino acid found in green tea. Like GABA, L-theanine encourages the production of calming alpha brain waves, and it also helps the body make more GABA. 4,5,6 You might think that something that calms you down would muddy your mind, but the opposite is true. L-theanine improves attention and reaction time — quickly. 7 Suntheanine ® works within 30 to 40 minutes after ingestion — an effect that can last 8–12 hours. 8 L-theanine also helps you sleep, perhaps because it calms occasional worry. A study conducted by the National Institute of Mental Health in Japan found Suntheanine, a purified form of L-theanine, improved sleep quality in young men. 9 5-HTP 5-Hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) is a precursor of the neurotransmitter serotonin. That means your body uses 5-HTP to make serotonin, which stabilizes mood and supports feelings of wellbeing. 5-HTP has been shown to promote a calm mood and healthy sleep, principally by decreasing the time needed to fall asleep and reducing nighttime awakenings. 10,11,12 It also increases the time spent in REM, one of the most restorative phases of sleep. Melatonin The pineal gland secretes the hormone melatonin in response to darkness to ready the body for sleep. Melatonin levels tend to fall with age, which is why seniors often struggle with sleep. Clinical research has shown that taking supplemental melatonin can help people of all ages fall asleep more quickly, increase the amount of time spent in restorative REM sleep, and improve the continuity and perceived quality of sleep. 13,14,15,16,17 Natural Factors' Stress-Relax® line harnesses the power of GABA, L-theanine, 5-HTP, and melatonin, with three fast-acting formulas. • Pharma GABA promotes relaxation and mental focus.* • Suntheanine L-Theanine supports mental calmness and relaxation.* • Tranquil Sleep®, with L-theanine, 5-HTP, and melatonin helps you get a good, restful night's sleep.* *These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. References (Endnotes) 1. Krystal JH, et al. Glutamate and GABA systems as targets for novel antidepressant and mood-stabilizing treatments. Mol Psychiatry. 2002;7:S71-80. 2. Abdou AM, et al. Relaxation and immunity enhancement effects of Gamma-Aminobutric Acid (GABA) administration in humans. Biofactors. 2006;26(3):201-08. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih. gov/16971751/ 3. Abdou AM, et al. Biofactors. 2006;26(3):201-8. 4. Higashiyama A, et al. Effects of L-theanine on attention and reaction time response. J Funct Foods. 2011 July;3(3):171-78. 5. Nobre AC, Rao A, Owen GN. L-theanine, a natural constituent in tea, and its effect on mental state. Asia Pac J Clin Nutr. 2008;17 Suppl 1:167-68. 6. Breus MJ. What you need to know about L-theanine. Psychology Today. 2017 Aug 29. 7. Higashiyama A, et al. Effects of l-theanine on attention and reaction time response. Journal of Functional Foods. 3(3), 2011, 171-178. 8. Yoto A, et al. Effects of L-theanine or caffeine intake on changes in blood pressure under physical and psychological stresses. J Physiol Anthropol. 2012 Oct 29;31(1):28. 9. Green tea lulls brain into quality sleep. Nutraingredients. 2004 Mar 17. 10. Kahn RS, et al. Effect of a serotonin precursor and uptake inhibitor in anxiety disorders; a double-blind comparison of 5-hydroxytryptophan, clomipramine and placebo. Int Clin Psychopharmacol. 1987 Jan;2(1):33-45. 11. Soulairac A, Lambinet H. Clinical studies of the effect of the serotonin precursor, L-5-hydroxytryptophan on sleep disorders. Schweiz Rundsch Med Prax. 1988 Aug 23;77(34A):19-23. https:// 12. Birdsall TC. 5-Hydroxytryptophan: a clinically-effective serotonin precursor. Altern Med Rev. 1998 Aug;3(4):271-80. 13. Zhdanova IV, et al. Sleep-inducing effects of low doses of melatonin ingested in the evening. Clin Pharmacol Ther. 1995 May;57(5):552-58. 14. Kunz, D., Mahlberg, R., M ller, C., et al. (2004). Melatonin in patients with reduced REM sleep duration: two randomized controlled trials. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2004;89(1):128-34. 15. De Leersynder H, Zisapel N, Laudon M. Prolonged-release melatonin for children with neurodevelopmental disorders. Pediatr Neurol. 2011 Jul;45(1):23-6. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih. gov/21723455/ 16. Peck JS, et al. Cognitive effect of exogenous melatonin administration in elderly persons: a pilot study. Am J Geriatr Psychiatry. 2004 Jul-Aug;12(4):432-36. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih. gov/15249281/ 17. Luthringer R, et al. The effect of prolonged-release melatonin on sleep measures and psychomotor performance in elderly patients with insomnia. Int Clin Psychopharmacol. 2009 Aug;24(5):239-49.

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of Abby's - Volume 9, Issue 3