L-Theanine is an amino acid derived from the leaves of green tea, and has been the focus of scientific and clinical research with regards to reducing psychological and physiological stress response parameters. Moreover, it is known to block the binding of L-glutamic acid to glutamate receptors in the brain, resulting in an anti-stress effect through the inhibition of cortical neuron excitation.
The study took this body of knowledge one step further by examining the effects of AlphaWave L-Theanine through measurement of alpha brainwave changes and responses to stress tests. Performed at the Wellington Sleep Investigation Centre (University of Otago, New Zealand), it also assessed changes in heart rate as an indication of stress level.
Twenty subjects (10 male and 10 female), aged between 21 and 47 years, were tested for the effects of AlphaWave L-Theanine or placebo. After the suitability and baseline values for the participants were established, each was subjected to alpha brainwave testing (by EEG) seven times over a 120-minute period. After the initial alpha test and a stress test, each subject consumed either 200 mg of AlphaWave L-Theanine or placebo. Two further stress tests were then undertaken during the following 90 minutes, and each participant’s heart rate was measured three times over the 135-minute period following consumption.
The results of the study revealed that AlphaWave L-Theanine consumption produced significant changes over time as compared to placebo on all the variable outcomes assessed in this investigation. For example, AlphaWave L-Theanine showed a positive effect over time on the tonic alpha power, which measures relaxed wakefulness, whereas the placebo had negative effects. Although the values for anxiety/tension were low, they decreased over time for both groups, but the decrease in AlphaWave group was greater. The group consuming AlphaWave also displayed reduced fatigue.
In addition, AlphaWave L-Theanine significantly reduced the heart rate compared with placebo over the time period of the study. This was a further indication of the actual stress reduction effect of AlphaWave L-Theanine.
“Many companies now use our AlphaWave L-Theanine in their product lines, and I was particularly pleased that this trial gives further support to their use of our brand. These results further confirm the beneficial effects of AlphaWave, and its ability to bring a real sense of relaxation into stressful times,” said Cal Bewicke, CEO of Ethical Naturals.