Benefits of GABA
Some of the possible benefits of GABA supplements include treating conditions such as depression, anxiety, or PMS; promoting weight loss; and causing a sense of relaxation. Although drugs that act like GABA or increase the levels are useful for a wide variety of medical conditions, there is no strong evidence that taking these supplements will produce similar effects.
Purported GABA Health BenefitsGABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) dietary supplements are claimed to be beneficial for a variety of different purposes. Some of the claimed health benefits of GABA include:
- Treating the following conditions:
- Promoting weight loss
- Increasing lean muscle mass
- Burning fat
- Relieving pain
- Relieving injuries and increasing exercise tolerance
- Promoting a sense of relaxation.
It is important to understand that dietary supplements can be marketed in the United States without any evidence that they are safe or effective. There is little scientific evidence to suggest that GABA is truly effective for most uses (see Does GABA Work?).
How Does GABA Work?GABA is the primary inhibitory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system in adults. This means that when GABA binds to receptors, it usually decreases the chance that a nerve will "fire" and send out a signal. Although drugs that act like GABA or increase the levels are useful for a wide variety of medical conditions, such as epilepsy and anxiety, there is no strong evidence that taking this supplement will produce similar effects.
Taking GABA may either increase or decrease human growth hormone (HGH) levels and may increase the level of the hormones insulin and glucagon.