Gamma-aminobutyric acid


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Gamma-aminobutyric acid

Dr. Kumar Pati, CEO, Best Nutrition, Hayward, CA, USA

Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) is a non-essential amino acid responsible for regulating neuronal excitability within the nervous system.  GABA is found in a range of species, such as insect and not only humans.  Structurally it is classified as an amino acid, but scientifically it is not referred because it does not qualify as an amino acid nor is it incorporated into proteins.  The first synthesis of GABA occurred in 1883.  At that time it was believed to only occur as a metabolic product from plants and microbes.  This assumption was later disproved in 1950 when Eugene Roberts and J. Awapara discovered the inhibitory neurotransmitter as an integral part of the mammalian central nervous system .


GABA cannot pass the blood brain barrier, consequently must be synthesized in vivo.  A pathway referred to as the GABA shunt is used to overcome the barrier.  It involves the enzyme, L-glutamic acid decarboxylase, glutamate, and pyridoxal phosphate.  GABA has been popularized over the years for its natural tranquilizing effects on the body.  It acts as a calming neurotransmitter responsible for communication between nerve cells and balancing stress impulses.  GABA functions to reduce anxiety disorders, panic attacks or anxiety may in fact be experiencing the effects of low levels of GABA, or low GABA activity.  There is evidence that GABA effectively improves metal focus, and is used in treating conditions such as addictions, headaches, and Parkinson’s disease.


Studies have been conducted to show a link between GABA and fat reduction.  The neurotransmitter has proven to stimulate the production of human growth hormone (HGH) which functions to build muscle.  HGH production decreases when a certain age is reached.  By promoting the continued production of HGH, GABA may counteract some of effects of aging, and build strength and endurance throughout life.


The recommended dosage when supplementing with GABA is 200mg, three times daily.


















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