GABA is not regarded as a weight loss supplement often, but it certainly should be. GABA is generally regarded as a supplement to improve your sleep, although there are many other unique functions of this amino acid.
As stated in a study produced by the American Physiological Society Physiological Reviews,
“Current interest in (GABA) has arisen from the convergence of several independent lines of investigation leading to the demonstrations that this and other related substances are normal products of brain metabolism and that GABA has an important physiological action upon brain function as well as upon peripheral nervous functions.”
GABA, also known as Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid, is a potent and vital neurotransmitter, responsible for many unique functions of the brain.
Regarded as the most potent depressive neurotransmitter in the human brain, GABA is capable of regulating many of your sedative and depressive thoughts. Along with this, it is also critical for a relaxed mind, which is why people often use GABA to sleep.
This amino acid can block impulses between nerve cells in the brain, which is why people use it for issues such as anxiety and insomnia. In fact, the group of anxiety medications known as benzodiazepines acts by enhancing the activity of GABA receptors. Sleep medications, such as Ambien, work similarly as well.
GABA is an extremely important neurotransmitter, and there are many benefits we are yet to learn. However, the question remains, is GABA useful for weight loss?
Keep reading below to learn about the benefits of GABA for weight loss, and the best GABA supplement brand to purchase!
Health Benefits of GABA Supplements
Generally speaking, most people will use a GABA supplement to help them sleep better. There are many other reasons people can use a GABA supplement, but most likely it is to relieve symptoms of insomnia or simply improve sleep quality.
However, there are many other health benefits of using a GABA supplement as well.
Two of the other common uses for GABA are improving muscle tone, and managing mental health issues such as anxiety or depression.
When levels of GABA are low, symptoms emerge such as epilepsy and mood disorder. Several research studies have shown that GABA can boost your mood or provide a calming and relaxing effect on your nervous system.
Individuals who deal with issues such as Attention Deficit Disorder or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder can also potentially benefit from the use of a GABA supplement. As shown in a study published in the Archive of General Psychiatry,
“GABA concentration is reduced in children with ADHD compared with typically developing control subjects.”
Supplementing with GABA is likely to have a positive effect on many mental health issues, due to its intrinsic role within the brain.
Aside from the mental health benefits, there are physical health benefits of this neurotransmitter as well. A study published in the European Journal of Pharmacology revealed that
“the results suggest an important role for GABA receptors in the central regulation of blood pressure and heart rate.”
However, the question remains, is GABA useful for losing weight?
GABA for Weight Loss | Is it Useful?
There are two primary reasons that GABA is (almost) conclusively a beneficial weight loss supplement.
The first reason that you should use Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid as a solution for weight loss is that it will help you sleep better. There are many reasons that sleeping well each night is important for weight loss, which makes GABA a perfect weight loss supplement.
More so, GABA also has positive impacts on growth hormone secretion. Increased levels of growth hormone is one of the basic reasons why men build muscle and lose weight easier than women.
For these two reasons, GABA is a very useful weight loss supplement.
Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid and Growth Hormone
There have been multiple studies done on the effect of GABA supplementation and growth hormone secretion, and the evidence is fairly conclusive.
A study published in Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise researched whether or not supplementing with Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid stimulated immunoreactive growth hormone (irGH) and immunofunctional growth hormone (ifGH) at rest, and whether or not it had any impact on levels of irGH and ifGH following resistance exercise.
The study concluded that ingesting GABA elevated both irGH and ifGH levels at rest, and following exercise as well. Peak concentrations of irGH and ifGH both showed elevations of nearly 400% after GABA supplementation at rest!
As stated in the study,
“data indicates that ingested GABA elevates resting and postexercise irGH and ifGH concentrations. The extent to which irGH/ifGH secretion contributes to skeletal muscle hypertrophy is unknown, although augmenting the postexercise irGH/ifGH response may improve resistance training-induced muscular adaptations.”
For those of you who don’t completely understand the role of growth hormone in our body, higher levels of growth hormone are strongly related to increased lean muscle mass and a lower body fat percentage.
As stated in a study produced in Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology,
“It is well established that adult GHD usually is accompanied by an increase in fat accumulation and GH replacement in adult patients with GHD results in a reduction of fat mass and abdominal fat mass in particular. It is also recognized that obesity and abdominal obesity in particular results in a secondary reduction in GH secretion.”
Supplementing with GABA has many beneficial effects for those who are trying to lose weight, and scientific research supports these claims!
Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid and Sleep
According to a study produced in Neuroscience Letters,
“present data suggests the important role of the thalamic GABAergic neurons in the regulation of sleep.”
As I have said multiple times, GABA plays a distinct and important role in improving the quality of your sleep. Not only does GABA supplementation help you fall asleep, but it will help you stay asleep as well.
Sleep is crucial for weight loss because it is the time when your body is recovering. If you are trying to lose weight, the odds are that you are often exercising as well. If you do not get a proper amount of sleep each night, your exercise efforts will be for nothing!
Using GABA is a scientifically backed solution to improve your sleep each night, and help you lose weight as efficiently as possible!
Best GABA Supplement
PharmaGABA is the best form of GABA for supplementation, and I have used it personally. It has clinical trials that support it as an effective ingredient, making it the most well researched GABA supplement. If you read more about PharmaGABA, I am confident you will understand why it is the best GABA supplement on the market!
I have used a few Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid supplements before, but my favorite is from Utzy Naturals.
I would like to notify you that if you purchase this product, I do receive an affiliate commission (so thank you for supporting my blog), but I am confident with suggesting Stay Asleep by Utzy Naturals to you because my wife and I have used it ourselves and we both saw the benefits in our sleep quality.
Interestingly enough, Stay Asleep by Utzy Naturals is not a GABA-only product. Along with the GABA itself, Stay Asleep also contains other beneficial ingredients to help you stay asleep through the night better.
Stay Asleep by Utzy Naturals contains 100mg of GABA, which is enough to help regulate your sleep cycle. There is no clinically suggested dosage of GABA which is guaranteed to work for each person, which is why it is difficult to understand the proper Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid dosage.
If you are looking for the best GABA supplement, Utzy Naturals is my personal choice!
Alternative Sources of Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid
There are no known natural sources of GABA. However, there are a variety of foods and drinks that contain substances (such as flavonoids) that influence the way GABA works in your brain. These foods and drinks include:
Concluding Thoughts on GABA Weight Loss Benefits and the Best GABA Supplement
There seems to be a consensus that GABA is free from side effects as long as you take it with the recommended dosage; however, research is presently insufficient to confirm this fully. Although I cannot say I felt any true side effects from using GABA, I noticed an awkward shortness of breath about 15 minutes after using the supplement initially.
I have asthma, so there might be a connection between GABA metabolism and asthma. However, my sleep quality was excellent.
I strongly advise you to speak with a doctor or medical professional before using any new dietary supplement, solely to confirm it is safe for you to use. There is a chance that this supplement or any other can interact with other medications you take, which is why you should speak with someone more knowledgeable about the topic.
GABA has shown clinical proof that it can be effective in treating certain health conditions, but because it is not regulated, you still need to be cautious.
However, Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid is a supplement with the potential to drastically improve your weight loss efforts!