With all the stress and anxiety associated with the Christmas season you will be happy to know that bananas have GABA that reduces stress and anxiety to ease sleep. The brain has four primary neurotransmitters: dopamine, acetylcholine, GABA and serotonin that affect the four areas of the brain and the brain’s health in various ways. An overabundance or deficiency of any neurotransmitter can lead to health problems including lack of sleep.
Neurons in the brain produce the biochemical GABA providing calmness and aiding in the production of endorphins. An excess of GABA can result in a person not taking care of their own needs at the expense of others because GABA dominant people are natural nurturers. Natural nurturers are those that thrive on organization and long-term relationships like homemakers, administrators, technicians, nurses, security officers, accountants and bus drivers. Early signs of a GABA deficiency include feelings of anxiety, irritability, stress and an inability to fall asleep easy. Some other symptoms can include allergies, dizziness, muscle aches, low sex drive and headaches.
As GABA deficiencies become more prominent it will affect all four major domains of the brain function and physical, personality, memory and attention issues will follow such as; backaches, rapid heart rate, chronic pain, constipation, muscle loss, incontinence, depression, rage, restlessness, insomnia and even seizures. GABA affects epilepsy and Parkinson’s disease as well.
If you have a mild to moderate GABA deficiency you should be able to balance it with a diet along with supplements, exercise and a healthy lifestyle. Amino acid glutamine is necessary to produce GABA, so include foods that are rich in glutamine(mgs per 6-8 ounce serving) such as almonds 10.3 g., bananas 220 mg., beef liver 6.5 g., brown rice 940 mg., halibut 7.9 g., oats 7.4 g., walnuts 5.4 g., spinach 680 mg.. You can also boost your GABA levels with valerian root and passionflower. Exercise is also important to increase GABA and it is necessary to reduce lead and/or aluminum levels in your system by using a metal detoxification program.
Reducing aluminum levels see: prednisone insomnia for a list of foods and products you should avoid.
Bananas are the best fruit source of vitamin B6 and B6 helps with the production of the neurotransmitter GABA. Bananas are also a source of vitamin C, vitamin B group folate, niacin, riboflavin and pantothenic acid. Bananas have how much GABA? A small banana provides a quarter of your daily needs and a large banana provides nearly half. Bananas benefit other health related issues; such as a great fiber source for constipation, filling to control weight with no fat, helps keep blood pressure normal and is very useful for clear thinking, improved memory and mood.
How do you know if you have a GABA deficiency? Answer these questions and for each yes count a point.
Is it hard for you to relax?
Are you easily stressed or overwhelmed?
Do you feel overworked or pressured?
Is your body uptight or stiff?
Do you sometimes feel weak or shaky?
Do you use sugar, alcohol or other drugs help you relax?
Are you bothered by loud noises, lights or too much activity?
Feel even more stressed if you skip a meal?
0-2 points – slightly low level of GABA
3-4 points – moderately low level of GABA
5 or more – severely low level of GABA
A Neuro-Screen Profile is a neurotransmitter test that indicates neurotransmitter or chemical imbalances that can lead to depression, anxiety/panic, insomnia, cognitive disorder, ADD/ADHD, fibromyalgia, chronic pain, neurotoxicity, memory impairment, mood swings, migraines, obsessive-compulsive disorder and substance abuse.
This test is done by examining your urine. The neurotransmitters circulate in the blood and are filtered by the kidneys and excreted in the urine. All four Neurotransmitters can be checked by this urine test. Test kits are available online and each includes an easy method to collect a urine sample that can be sent back to a lab. A healthcare practitioner that specializes in neurotransmitter balancing can interpret the test and determine the proper treatment depending the on the severity of the deficiency. Treatment can be medication, supplements or just changes to your lifestyle to include a healthier diet and exercise.
Don’t trust your brain chemistry to just anyone! Find a mental health specialist that:
- Is experience in neurochemistry and neurotransmitter dysfunction
- Provides customized treatment protocols based on symptoms and lab results
- Provides consultations and follow up testing
- Has training and experience with psychotropic medications
REMEMBER that bananas are a great source of GABA as well as a health benefit for many other medical issues. If your bananas are not ripe leave them in a fruit bowl to ripen naturally. When you buy bananas, mix the ripe and green ones together to get a steady flow of ripe bananas, as you don’t want all your bananas to be ripe on the same day. Bananas have GABA sleep well, be well.
The content in Bananas have GABA that Reduces Stress and Anxiety to Ease Sleep is for information purposes only, intended to raise the awareness of different solutions for your sleep problems and should not be considered medical advice. For medical diagnosis and treatment, please see your qualified health-care professional. Tell your doctor before taking any supplement like GABA for sleep as it may have an interaction with other medications or health issues.