GABA is a neurotransmitter that functions as the brains calming agent. It helps regulate the nervous system and keeps all other brain neurotransmitters connected. GABA is the opposite of Dopamine. Dopamine fires one up and GABA helps one unwind and relax. Essentially dopamine fuels a sympathetic state while GABA supports a parasympathetic state
When you have an abundance of GABA, your mind is at peace and your body functions optimally. When GABA is insufficient anxiety increases. You feel overwhelmed, anxious, and just not right. Migraines, mood swings, sleep issues, anxiety, and panic attacks are all tied to a GABA imbalance. When you lose optimal GABA levels your brain can no longer send its signals smoothly and effortlessly to the rest of the body.
Characteristics of a GABA deficient person
- Painfully shy and anxious
- Drama queen
- A predilection for posting pics of one’s ass or abs on Instagram every day
Anxiety stimulates the release of the stress hormone cortisol, which hampers fat loss and hormone optimization. Anxiety due to GABA and serotonin deficiencies is the primary mechanism behind the impulse for binge eating.
Improving GABA Levels
GABA deficiencies can be addressed by making better food choices. The more GABA producing foods you eat the more GABA you will be able to create. The Goal of a high-GABA diet is to ensure the body has enough raw materials for creating a steady supply of the amino acid glutamine. Glutamine is a precursor to GABA
Glutamine is found abundantly in high-quality complex carbohydrate sources such as Beans, lentils, sprouted brown rice, oatmeal, and whole-wheat bread.
Also, focus on foods that increase the B-vitamin Inositol. Inositol gives GABA a nice boost. Examples of food high in inositol include beans, broccoli, lentils, mangoes, nuts, oats, spinach, oranges, and Kale.
Add spices to your diet that help with stress management: cinnamon, oregano, cloves, and cardamom
Add teas to your plan. Teas contain the amino acid theanine. Theanine helps induce an alert yet relaxed mind. It helps stop the mind from racing and will help with sleep and relaxation.
Focus on stress management skills and learn to relax. Get massages regularly; meditate daily, and practice tai chi, yoga, or chi king. Take daily walks in which you focus on deep breathing.
Nutrition supplements that help with GABA
- Aggressive Strength Recovery Oil: (8-15 sprays two times per day)
- B-100 vitamins: (1-4 caps per day)
- GABA (1-5 grams before bedtime)
- Theanine. 500mg-1000mg whenever you feel stressed or have anxiety
For more information on optimizing brain health, check out Dr. Braverman’s excellent book “Younger You”