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Top 5 L-Theanine Side Effects

L-theanine is a type of amino acid that is found in green tea and the mushroom Boletus badius. It is also known as Suntheanine or simply theanine.  As an amino acid, it serves as a building block for proteins. Theanine is similar to glutamate in structure. Glutamate is used for the transmission of nerve impulses in the central nervous system.  It is considered an all around dietary supplement that helps people with various emotional and psychological imbalances like anxiety and depression.  It is considered a naturally occurring amino acid and does not appear to produce any side effects.

L-theanine side effects

Uses of L-theanine

L-theanine has many uses including:

  • Treatment of anxiety
  • Treatment of stress
  • Prevention of Alzheimer’s disease
  • Treatment of hypertension
  • Serves as a potentiating drug for anti-cancer medications
  • Enhancement of the immune system
  • Enhancement of the taste of food

Side effects of L-theanine

There are currently no known side effects of L-theanine use, but this does not mean that L-theanine literally will not produce any side effects in the body. The lack of L-theanine side effects may only be due to the lack of research and studies. Possible side effects maybe discovered that could comprise the potentiating effects of L-theanine when used with other drugs. On the other hand, possible side effects might be mild and not cause any potentially serious complications, making it safe for use. The possible L-theanine side effects of include:

1. Headache

Headaches have been reported by people taking L-theanine, but there are no studies indicating that L-theanine is the cause for the headaches. Headaches associated with L-theanine tend to be mild, and may be associated with headaches experienced with excess glutamate.

2. Dizziness

Although L-theanine is associated with the improvement of nerve impulses in the brain, there may be a correlation between dizziness and L-theanine. There has been no clear link between dizziness to L-theanine.

3. Gastrointestinal symptoms

Some people have reported gastrointestinal symptoms such as bloating and abdominal pain following L-theanine use. This is relieved by avoiding the intake of too much L-theanine or green tea. As we all know, too much of a good thing is not good.

4. Hypotension

Because of the potentiating effect of L-theanine on drugs, it may lead to hypotension (abnormally low blood pressure) when used in conjunction with antihypertensive drugs (drugs used to treat high blood pressure) since it will enhance vasodilatation. This may be managed by avoiding the intake of L-theanine with antihypertensive drugs.

5. Drowsiness

Although the use of L-theanine has not been associated with drowsiness, despite its relaxing effect, it should not be taken with alcohol or other sedatives because the potentiating effect may enhance the drowsiness caused by these drugs.

L-theanine has not been strongly linked to any side effects and is considered safe.  The benefits of L-theanine appear to far outweigh any possible side effects that might someday be discovered.

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