Living in a fast-paced world can often leave us feeling overwhelmed and anxious.
I have seen firsthand the impact anxiety can have on individuals and families.
While traditional treatments have their place, at Bradford Wellness Co. we are also passionate about exploring natural and holistic alternatives.
One such alternative that has gained attention in recent years is CBD, whose safety and benefits researchers are always exploring.
How does CBD affect GABA?
CBD has shown to potentially increase GABA levels in the brain by inhibiting an enzyme that breaks down GABA.
Wondering what GABA is?
GABA is a neurotransmitter known for its role in anxiety regulation.
Low GABA levels have been linked to a variety of mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, and insomnia.
CBD may lead to a calming effect on the nervous system, reducing feelings of anxiety and promoting relaxation.
What are low GABA symptoms?
GABA, or gamma-aminobutyric acid, is a naturally occurring amino acid that works as a neurotransmitter in your brain.
Neurotransmitters function as chemical messengers, and GABA is considered an inhibitory neurotransmitter.
That mean it blocks, or inhibits, certain brain signals and decreases activity in your nervous system.
Essentially, GABA helps to reduce feelings of fear, anxiety, and stress by regulating neuron activity.
When GABA levels are low, your brain may become overstimulated, leading to anxiety, insomnia, and mood disorders.
Symptoms of low GABA may include a constant feeling of dread or unease, chronic stress, poor sleep, substance abuse issues, and persistent feelings of fear or panic even when there’s no obvious reason for these feelings.
Does CBD Increase GABA?
While research on CBD’s interactions with GABA is still ongoing, some studies suggest that CBD may indirectly increase GABA levels in the brain.
By modulating the activity of GABA receptors, CBD may help to enhance the inhibitory effects of GABA, potentially reducing anxiety symptoms.
Research also suggests that CBD may increase serotonin levels in the brain, a neurotransmitter known for its mood-regulating effects.
By targeting multiple pathways in the brain, CBD may work to reduce anxiety and promote a sense of calm and well-being.
This may lower our need for anti-anxiety drugs or even painkillers.
Exploring Natural Options for Anxiety
Natural GABA sources
There are several ways to naturally increase your GABA levels.
One of the most effective is through diet.
Foods that are rich in GABA or promote its production include whole grains, nuts, bananas, broccoli, brown rice, lentils, citrus fruits, berries, spinach, and fish.
These foods contain either GABA or precursors to this neurotransmitter, such as glutamic acid, which can help to naturally boost your GABA levels.
Another way to increase GABA is through regular physical exercise. Exercise has been found to promote the release of GABA in the brain, leading to feelings of relaxation and improved mood.
Mindful practices like meditation and yoga are also believed to enhance GABA production. These practices promote relaxation and stress reduction, which are associated with increases in GABA levels.
Additionally, certain supplements like magnesium and L-theanine are thought to support GABA function. However, it’s always important to consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new supplement regimen.
Lastly, getting adequate sleep is crucial for maintaining optimal GABA levels. Lack of sleep can decrease GABA production, so ensure you’re getting enough rest each night.
Remember, it’s always best to approach any changes to your lifestyle or diet with a holistic view, considering the overall impact on your health and wellbeing.
Alongside CBD, certain herbal supplements like chamomile, valerian root, and lavender have been used traditionally for their calming properties.
These herbs contain compounds that may support GABA function and promote relaxation.
However, it’s important to note that herbal supplements are not regulated by the FDA and, like CBD, may interact with certain medications.
There are many kinds of therapies that have shown efficacy in managing anxiety.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR), and acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) are just a few examples.
By addressing the underlying thoughts and behaviors that contribute to anxiety, these therapies can help individuals manage their symptoms in a holistic way.
These therapeutic approaches, combined with natural remedies, can provide a comprehensive approach to anxiety treatment.
A Multifaceted Approach
While CBD’s direct effects on GABA are still being researched, there is evidence to suggest that CBD may have an indirect impact on GABA levels in the brain.
Both GABA and CBD have shown promise in managing anxiety, but it is important to consult with a healthcare professional before combining them.
If you are considering natural and holistic alternatives for anxiety relief, exploring lifestyle modifications, herbal supplements, and therapy options alongside CBD could offer a multifaceted approach to managing anxiety.
Remember, each individual’s response to treatment may vary, so it is essential to work with a qualified healthcare professional to develop a personalized plan that suits your needs.
By prioritizing your well-being and exploring safe and effective alternatives, you are taking an active role in promoting your mental health and overall wellness.