Ever wondered about GABA and why it can make you happy? In the world of neuroscience, GABA boasts some notable, science-backed roles in boosting our mood and overall well-being. Dive in to unravel the magic behind GABA and its happiness-inducing effects!
GABA In A Nutshell
GABA, or Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid, is a neurotransmitter that acts as the brain’s ‘calming agent’. It counteracts excitatory neurotransmitters, ensuring our brains aren’t always in a perpetual state of ‘high alert’.
The Science Of Smiles
So how does this relate to happiness? Studies indicate that GABA levels were directly linked to feelings of relaxation and reduced stress. The more GABA present, the more subdued the anxiety and agitation (1).
But there’s more! Gaba has a wide range of benefits that can contribute to every day feelings of happiness including:
1. Promotion of Sleep
GABA’s ability to calm the brain aids in reducing anxiety and enhancing sleep quality. Research suggests GABA supplements can both shorten the time it takes to fall asleep and lengthen total sleep time (2).
2. Enhanced Cognitive Function
GABA plays a crucial role in cognitive activities, with increased levels linked to improved memory and attention. Its balancing effect on neurotransmitters is key for effective information processing and decision-making (3).
3. Mood Regulation
Interestingly, it seems that some people have chosen GABA as an alcohol alternative, to give them the warm, fuzzy, and relaxing feeling that often comes with drinking alcohol, but without actually consuming it! Take a look at this Amazon review from a customer who bought Approved Science® GABA +:
“Helps me avoid drinking liquor. Thank you very much.”
Choosing The Right GABA Supplement
Now that we’re all excited about GABA, it’s essential to remember that not all supplements are created equal. When scouting for the perfect GABA supplement, you should look for more than just GABA in the ingredients. A high-quality GABA supplement will also include:
L-Theanine – an amino acid that helps to enhance the benefits of GABA (4).
L-Arginine – Is converted into Nitric Oxide in the body, helping GABA to cross the blood-brain barrier to improve GABA levels in the brain (5).
Vitamin B6 – This should be in its most bioavailable form Pyridoxal-5-Phosphate to aid the body in naturally producing more GABA (6).
BioPerine® – To boost the absorption of the active ingredients, leading to better results (7).
Supplements And Happiness
You might be thinking, “Okay, this is all great. Can I take GABA supplements to boost my happiness?” The allure of enhancing one’s mood with a supplement is definitely appealing. While GABA’s role in regulating mood and promoting relaxation is well-documented, it’s important not to oversimplify its effects. Labeling GABA as a ‘happy pill’ might be a stretch. Our mood and overall well-being are influenced by a myriad of factors, both biochemical and environmental. Before considering any supplement, it’s crucial to approach the idea with caution, understand its nuances, and consult with healthcare professionals to ensure it’s the right choice for your individual needs.
Wrapping It Up
So, in the grand scheme of things, does GABA make you happy? The science seems to nod its head and say, “Yes, in a way.” But remember, genuine happiness comes from a blend of factors, both internal and external. While GABA certainly has its calming role, the pursuit of true well-being is an ongoing journey for each of us.