The Best GABA Supplements to Improve Your Sleep and Mood

GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) is a naturally occurring chemical compound produced in your brain, and, according to a recent study, helps to relax your body as well as your mind. "After 60 minutes of administration," the clinical trial's abstract reads. "GABA significantly increases alpha waves and decreases beta waves compared to water or L-theanine." The findings denote that GABA not only induces relaxation but also reduces anxiety. In fact, studies have found GABA is the primary inhibitory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system. Its levels are affected by poor diet, illness, age, and environmental toxins. Plus, an insufficient amount of GABA in your body can lead to anxiety, irritability, and sleep disorders like insomnia.

According to recent sleep studies, GABA levels are up to 30% lower in people suffering from insomnia. Similarly, GABA levels are also lower in patients with depression or mood disorders. But here's the thing: There isn't evidence proving that taking GABA orally increases its levels in the brain. Instead, experts recommend you take supplements with ingredients that increase GABA's effects by helping it better bind to your brain's receptors. That can be helpful in getting a more restful, deep sleep, as well as minimize stress overall. Sound good? We thought so too—so much so we asked a nutritionist for his recommendations. See below for his advice. 

Make sure you talk to your doctor before taking a new supplement and discuss any possible negative effects.

Next up: Here are six morning rituals that can help with anxiety.