Tag Archives: mental health

Nutrition and Depression: Amino Acids Can Improve Mood

We all know the importance of eating well. The link between an unhealthy diet and obesity, heart disease, and diabetes has led to bookshelves groaning with diet and nutrition books. But nutrition also affects our mental wellbeing. Are we getting enough amino acids to maintain our mental health?

A good diet is our best weapon in the war on disease. A healthy, well-balanced diet will also help our immune systems if we do become ill. This healthy diet will help combat some mental illnesses, too.

T. S. Sathyanarayana Rao, M. R. Asha, et al, explained the link between nutrition and depression in an article in the Indian Journal of Psychiatry. They found that the diets of many people suffering from mental disorders are deficient in essential vitamins, minerals, and omega-3 fatty acids.

Supplements containing amino acids have been found to reduce symptoms of depression. Some amino acids control our moods—they cross the blood-brain barrier, carrying the chemical signals in our brains. But if we are not getting the right amount, our moods are affected.

Amino acid supplements treat mood disorders

The major symptoms of depression include increased sadness and anxiety, loss of appetite, and loss of interest in pleasurable activities. Deficiencies in neurotransmitters like serotonin, dopamine, noradrenaline, and the amino acid GABA are often present patients with depression.

The amino acids tryptophan, tyrosine, phenylalanine, and methionine are often helpful in treating mood disorders. Indeed, tryptophan is converted to serotonin–the chemical which controls happiness.

Tryptophan is an essential amino acid, which means we must get it from our food. But people with poor diets do not get enough tryptophan.

Antidepressants and other drugs are very successful at treating depression. The researchers hope that nutritional supplements containing amino acids will work with these drugs, possibly leading to lower doses, and fewer side effects. They suggest daily supplements of amino acids to help achieve an antidepressant effect.

Nutritional neuroscience gives us our best shot of preventing and treating some mental illnesses.

Sources: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2738337/

Glycine Amino Acid May Help Control Schizophrenia

Could glycine amino acid help people with mental health disorders such as schizophrenia?

Schizophrenia is a mental disorder where someone suffers from the inability to tell the difference between what is real and what is not (delusional thoughts). The symptoms of schizophrenia can include hallucinations, paranoia, delusions, disorganized speech and thinking. These symptoms of this mental health problem disrupt work and social life.

A recent study was conducted at Harvard Medical School to determine if oral intake of glycine amino acids contributed to the treatment of schizophrenia. Previous studies showed that subjects who consumed glycine for two weeks showed signs of improvement.

Glycine is an amino acid, a natural compound that is produced by the consumption of protein in your diet. The amount of it in your diet is, however, very small.

For this specific study, the researchers at Harvard Medical School monitored oral glycine intake in 11 healthy adult men. The glycine intake in these subjects was monitored by using a non-invasive proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy technique to measure brain glycine changes.

The results showed a 38% increase in brain glycine ratio. The purpose of this study was to further understand the glycine dynamics in the human brain. Therefore, the findings are significant to future treatments of schizophrenia and other glutamate system dysfunctions.

The glutamate system is made up of neurotransmitters in the nervous system and glutamate receptors found throughout the brain and spinal cords. The glutamate system plays a huge role in normal physiological functions.

The results of this study suggest that people with schizophrenia and people with other physiological dysfunctions can benefit from oral glycine intake to help them control the mental disorder.

In other words, by taking glycine orally as a glycine dietary supplement, you may be able to control the symptoms of schizophrenia and other mental disorders.

To read further about the study, visit http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?term=Oral%20glycine%20administration%20increases%20brain%20glycine%2Fcreatine%

What Can GABA Amino Acid Do For Me?

GABA amino acid supplements can help you with a number of things. This is a chemical that exists in all of us and plays an important role in how we live our lives.  Here is a little information on it so you can see whether or not it’s a good idea to use it as a supplement.

GABA is something that’s created in your body naturally and it is required to keep your mood in check.  It helps control the fight or flight response and this means that in a lot of people, it controls how much anxiety they feel. People that don’t have the correct balance of GABA amino acid chemicals in their brains are going to feel a lot of anxiety and may have a lot of manic behavior problems. This is why it’s important to take these kinds of supplements if you have any problems with these issues. If you’ve ever drank alcohol then you know that it lowers your inhibitions. This is because it acts on the part of the brain that is responsible for GABA production. When this balance is thrown off, then you’re more likely to do things that you wouldn’t normally do. When the alcohol wears off and you feel all of those anxious feelings, that is because your GABA balance is off. You can only make things better if you abstain from alcohol and use this kind of supplement for it to be effective. Speak with a doctor if you struggle with addiction. You should now know a little more about GABA amino acid and how it can help you if you need it. Make sure that if you do have any extra questions, you ask them to your doctor just so that you can be safe.

Read more comprehensive reports and scientific studies on GABA in the GABA section of our site.

This document was produced by a third party article provider. The opinions and statements are of that organization’s own and the owner and publisher of the site assume no responsibility for the accuracy of the content. Our articles are for informational, educational and entertainment purposes only. Please do your own due diligence, verify any health claims by doing additional research and consult your doctor before starting any supplementation program or making any lifestyle changes, including changes to your medication and supplementation.