Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is an incredibly common condition that affects both children and adults. It can be debilitating for those diagnosed with significant impacts in both their work and personal lives.
While there are medical treatments available, what about those who are looking for a more natural approach? L-theanine may help. Read on to learn more about L-theanine benefits for ADHD symptoms.
- L-theanine may improve focus and attention in people with ADHD.
- L-theanine may reduce anxiety and improve sleep in people with ADHD.
- L-theanine may be a safe and effective way to manage ADHD symptoms, especially when combined with medication.
ADHD is a chronic condition commonly diagnosed in early childhood. It is associated with difficulty concentrating, hyperactivity, and impulsive behavior.
The most common signs and symptoms of ADHD include daydreaming, forgetfulness, frequent squirming and fidgeting, excessive talking, taking unnecessary risks, and difficulty getting along with others. It is one of the most common neurodevelopmental disorders in children. (Source)
Children tend to experience more severe symptoms than adults however, symptoms can change as children grow into adolescence and adulthood.
About two-thirds of children diagnosed with ADHD will still meet the criteria for their diagnosis by the time they are adults. Their symptoms may become less severe or may be different but will still be present.
During childhood, children with ADHD can learn different coping skills for better management of their symptoms if diagnosed early. This can improve their experience into adulthood so that their diagnosis is less impactful on their work and personal life.
There are three types of ADHD depending on which symptoms are the strongest:
- predominantly inattentive presentation
- predominantly hyperactive-impulsive presentation
- combined presentation.
The exact cause of ADHD is unknown however, researchers believe there is a strong genetic component. (Source)
There are additional potential causes for ADHD, including the presence of a brain injury, exposure to environmental contaminants such as lead during early pregnancy or childhood, alcohol or tobacco use during pregnancy, premature delivery, and low birth weight.
Although some may still believe ADHD can be caused by other factors, scientists have ruled out any increased risk of developing this disorder as a result of too much sugar, excessive television, parenting styles, or other social and environmental factors. (Source)
ADHD can sometimes be difficult to diagnose as many symptoms are shared by other conditions, such as anxiety, depression, insomnia, and learning disabilities.
As you can imagine, these types of behaviors can be significantly impactful on the ability of children and adults to complete daily tasks and participate in normal responsibilities both at home and at work or school.
It may also put individuals more at risk for developing anxiety, impulsive eating behaviors, substance abuse, and sleep challenges as well as negative impacts on personal relationships. (Source)
While traditional medicine has treatments available to counteract ADHD symptoms, there has become a growing interest in natural supplements for ADHD management. One of those natural options includes L-theanine, an amino acid that can be found in green and black teas as well as some varieties of mushrooms.
While there is limited research available for L-theanine as a treatment for ADHD, many studies have found it has the potential to complement treatment.
Several smaller research studies have found that L-theanine supplements may be beneficial in managing common symptoms associated with ADHD, particularly those for attention and focus. Many of these studies also included caffeine which may play an additional role in the benefits perceived from L-theanine. (Source)(Source)
For those who are considering taking an L-theanine supplement to help manage your ADHD symptoms, be sure to choose your supplements wisely. Because dietary supplements are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for safety and efficacy, it’s up to the manufacturers of the product to ensure you are getting what they claim.
Consider products from trusted brands that offer full transparency of their ingredients along with third-party testing for quality and purity, such as Human Tonik.
Human Tonik is a leading provider of scientifically-backed supplements that is free of proprietary blends so you always know exactly what and how much of each ingredient you are getting. Because no one wants to take a risk when it comes to their health.
Understanding The Symptoms
Whether you suffer from ADHD yourself or you have friends or family members who do, you’ve likely noticed some of the common symptoms of this disorder. However, ADHD symptoms can show up in some surprising ways depending on the type.
Additionally, children and adults can have conditions present alongside ADHD, with common ones being anxiety, depression, autism, Tourette’s syndrome, Bipolar disorder, and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). (Source)
Below is a comprehensive list of common ADHD symptoms in children and adults. It’s important to note that simply having one or more of these symptoms does not determine an ADHD diagnosis but it can help to determine if you or a family member may want to reach out to your doctor or healthcare provider for a more extensive evaluation.
ADHD Symptoms In Children And Teenagers
ADHD symptoms in children typically occur before the age of 6 and can include, but are not limited to the following:
- Short attention span
- Easily distracted
- Unable to complete tedious tasks
- Makes careless mistakes
- Difficulty with organization
- Difficulty listening to instructions
- Frequently losing things
- Constantly changing tasks
- Unable to sit still
- Always having to be moving
- Difficulty waiting their turn
- Excessive talking
- Frequently interrupts conversations
- Acting without thinking
- Taking unnecessary risks
ADHD Symptoms In Adults
ADHD symptoms in adults tend to be more subtle compared to children and may include, but are not limited to the following:
- Lack of attention to detail
- Starting new tasks before completing old ones
- Difficulty focusing or prioritizing tasks
- Difficulty with organization
- Mood swings
- Extreme impatience
- Taking unnecessary risks
- Frequently interrupting others
Current Treatments In The Market
The most common treatment methods for ADHD include behavioral therapy and medications.
For children under 6 years old, it is recommended that behavioral therapy, including training for the parents, be the main treatment for ADHD symptoms. This helps provide coping skills for both parent and child and allows them to be better fit to manage their symptoms as they get older. For those 6 years and older a combination of medication and behavioral therapy is recommended. (Source)
There are several FDA-approved medications to treat ADHD symptoms in children 6 years and older, including stimulants and non-stimulant options. Stimulants are the most widely-used form of medication for ADHD treatment as they are up to 80% successful in reducing symptoms and are rapid-acting compared to non-stimulant medications which do not work as quickly and may not work as well. (Source)
There are two main types of stimulant medications used in conventional ADHD treatment methods:
- methylphenidate (the active ingredient in Ritalin)
- amphetamine (the active ingredient in Adderall)
Non-stimulant options include alpha-adrenergic agonists (such as Clonidine) and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (such as Atomoxetine); however, these can take anywhere from 4-6 weeks to take effect and some individuals may not notice as significant of a difference in symptoms compared to stimulants. (Source)
There are several types of behavioral therapies available for children and adolescents including parent training for behavior management, behavioral interventions in the classroom, peer interventions that focus on behavior, and/or organizational skill training.
Many schools offer special programs and classes for children who suffer from ADHD which can help them succeed in their school work and further manage their ADHD symptoms as they continue on in their academic career. (Source)
While conventional treatment options for ADHD have a high success rate, they are not without their side effects.
Common side effects of both ADHD stimulant and non-stimulant medications include but are not limited to:
- Loss of appetite
- Difficulty falling asleep
- “Wear off” or “Rebound” symptoms
- Mood changes
While effective, many adults and parents of children who suffer from ADHD would like access to natural and effective alternatives. While the research is still ongoing, L-theanine may be a helpful addition to ADHD symptom management.
Unfortunately, current research shows L-theanine works best when combined with medication; however, there are potential opportunities for L-theanine to help those with mild cases of ADHD as well as those who have acquired skills to manage their symptoms without medication.
L-Theanine: A Natural Alternative
What Is L-Theanine?
L-theanine is a non-essential amino acid that can be found in various teas and certain varieties of mushrooms. It is believed to play a role in cognitive function by altering the levels of certain chemicals in the brain such as serotonin and dopamine.
These alterations affect mood, sleep, and stress levels. L-theanine may also increase alpha brain waves which can help to boost relaxation without increasing drowsiness. (Source)
Scientific Insights into L-Theanine Benefits
L-theanine has been associated with a variety of health benefits ranging from stress management, anxiety reduction, improvements in sleep, and enhanced cognitive function. L-theanine is believed to exhibit a calming effect due to its alterations in both neurotransmitters and brain waves.
A review that included five randomized controlled trials of over 100 participants found that four of the trials were able to successfully link L-theanine supplementation with improvements in stress and anxiety levels. (Source)
The same calming benefits of L-theanine have been linked to improvements in sleep. In fact, it has the potential to be used as a safe, natural alternative to sleep medication due to its anxiolytic effects which promote restful sleep. (Source)
Additionally, L-theanine may help boost cognitive function. According to one study, just 97 mg of L-theanine combined with 40mg of caffeine helped to increase focus and attention in a group of young adults completing demanding tasks. (Source)
Another study conducted in Japan on middle-aged and older subjects found that L-theanine may contribute to improving attention and enhancing working memory and executive functions. This is believed to be related to the increase in alpha brain waves which can help to increase alertness, focus, and creativity, while also enhancing relaxation. (Source)(Source)
While there is limited research available for L-theanine as a treatment for ADHD specifically, many studies have found it has the potential to complement treatment for symptom management due to its calming effects which can help to enhance attention and focus.
Many studies on L-theanine for ADHD also included caffeine, which may also further promote attention and focus. Whether you choose to use L-theanine supplements or simply try incorporating more L-theanine food sources (such as tea) into your routine, caffeine may be an important factor to consider. (Source)(Source)
It is unclear at this time whether L-theanine is helpful for those with predominantly hyperactive-impulsive presentation ADHD compared to predominantly inattentive presentation or mixed presentation.
It appears most benefits noted from studies are surrounding attention and focus versus hyperactivity; however, L-theanine is also known to provide calming effects that may reduce hyperactivity.
Further research is still ongoing for L-theanine as a potential natural alternative for symptom management for all types.
Human Tonik’s Approach
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Why Choose Human Tonik Products
If you are considering trying out the supplement route for ADHD symptom management, the first step is to speak with your doctor or healthcare provider.
While L-theanine is natural and considered safe for most healthy adults when taken as directed, it may interact with certain medications including those for low or high blood pressure as well as some stimulants.
Pregnant and breastfeeding women should avoid taking L-theanine as well as children.
While it may provide promising benefits for ADHD management, the research on child populations is very limited and therefore is not currently recommended at this time.
Additionally, some may experience side effects from taking L-theanine supplements. While most of these side effects may be related to high caffeine consumption, which is common in L-theanine-containing foods as well as supplements, it remains important to consider. Common side effects include nausea, upset stomach, and irritability.
If you’ve been cleared to take L-theanine supplements by your healthcare provider, it’s important to ensure you choose a high-quality product that contains scientifically-backed dosages. Be sure to choose a product from a trusted brand that offers you full transparency such as Human Tonik.
Human Tonik’s products, such as its Supergreen Tonik powder, provide full ingredient transparency without proprietary blends. This allows you to see every ingredient and the subsequent doses on their label.
Human Tonik also provides third-party testing for quality and purity which means they send out their products to an independent organization to verify that they are providing what they say they are.
Customer reviews highlight Human Tonik’s ingredient transparency and quality as well as extraordinary customer service with a 1-year guarantee for all of their products which are made in the U.S.A.
One customer review stated:
“Tried other green products but this one by far tastes the nicest and is the most effective. Also clearly gives all ingredients and nutrition information unlike other products.”Andy
Another reviewer wrote:
“I get more energy and I don’t get as tired during the day!!”Ryan
Human Tonik Supergreen Tonik powder contains 38 plant-based superfoods, adaptogens, and nutrients for better energy, immunity, focus, and overall health, including 250 mg of L-theanine per serving.
Human Tonik products are vegan-friendly and have been featured on many popular media outlets including NBS, ABC, and CBS.
Incorporating L-Theanine Into Your Routine
There is currently no recommended dosage information available on L-theanine supplementation however, most research studies support the use of L-theanine in dosages ranging from 60 mg up to 400 mg with most studies using between 200 to 400 mg.
These dosages were used in adult studies and there is limited research on dosage recommendation for children therefore L-theanine supplements are not recommended at this time for this population.
How To Take L-Theanine Supplements From Human Tonik
If you’re considering taking L-theanine supplements, you may be wondering what might be the best way to incorporate them into your routine.
First, consider your schedule and current daily habits. To be consistent with your L-theanine supplementation, it can be helpful to couple it with a habit you already have established, such as eating breakfast. This can help to ensure you are getting the most out of your L-theanine supplement.
If you wish to get the benefits of L-theanine for improvements in sleep, you may consider taking it shortly before bed.
You can take L-theanine supplements on an empty stomach or with food. It takes anywhere from 30-60 minutes for L-theanine supplements to take effect for most people; however, as with any supplement, individual results will vary.
Be sure to avoid L-theanine when taking medications for low or high blood pressure or stimulants.
Always speak with your doctor or healthcare provider before taking an L-theanine supplement, especially if you are taking any medications for a chronic condition.
If you choose Human Tonik products, such as their Supergreen Tonik powder which contains 250 mg of L-theanine, you can mix it into water or other liquids, blend it into a smoothie, or add it to baked goods of your choosing.
Some research studies suggest you can maximize the benefits of L-theanine supplements by taking them with caffeine, such as coffee or tea.
While this may boost the effects of L-theanine, it’s important to avoid excessive consumption of caffeine as this can come with negative side effects such as headaches, jitters, insomnia, and increased anxiety. (Source)
While research is still underway for L-theanine supplementation and its potential benefits in the management of ADHD symptoms, current studies are promising.
When combined with medication therapy, L-theanine may be a helpful, natural option to improve symptoms in those with predominantly inattentive presentation, especially when combined with caffeine.
While the exact mechanism for this is unknown, it’s hypothesized that L-theanine can help improve focus and attention by enhancing alpha brain waves and altering specific neurotransmitters. In addition to its potential effects on ADHD, L-theanine may help improve stress and anxiety, sleep, and cognitive function.
Despite the limited research on L-theanine for ADHD symptom management, L-theanine supplements are considered safe and are associated with mild side effects.
When choosing an L-theanine supplement it’s essential to pick a product from a trusted brand such as Human Tonik, which offers full transparency of their ingredients and doses as well as third-party testing for quality and purity.
In addition to providing a high-quality supplement with 250 mg of L-theanine, Human Tonik Supergreen Tonik also includes 38 plant-based superfoods, adaptogens, and nutrients for better energy, immunity, and overall health.
If you haven’t yet, take a look at Human Tonik’s product page to see what they offer to help you improve your overall health and well-being. You won’t regret it!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
What Is ADHD And How Is It Diagnosed?
ADHD, or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, is a neurological disorder characterized by persistent patterns of inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity. It is diagnosed through a combination of medical, behavioral, and psychological evaluations.
How Does L-Theanine Help In Managing ADHD Symptoms?
L-Theanine is an amino acid found naturally in green tea leaves. It is known to promote relaxation without drowsiness, enhance cognitive performance, and improve sleep quality. These properties can potentially help in managing symptoms of ADHD by improving focus, reducing anxiety, and promoting better sleep.
Are There Any Side Effects Associated With L-Theanine Supplementation?
L-Theanine is generally considered safe and well-tolerated. However, some individuals may experience mild side effects such as headache, dizziness, or digestive upset. It is always recommended to consult with a healthcare provider before starting any new supplement regimen.
Can L-Theanine Be Taken Alongside Conventional ADHD Medications?
While L-Theanine is generally considered safe to use with most medications, it is essential to consult with a healthcare provider to discuss potential interactions and determine the best approach for individual health needs.
Why Choose Human Tonik For My L-Theanine Supplements?
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Human Tonik stands out for its commitment to transparency, scientific backing, and high-quality ingredients.
The products are formulated based on scientific research and are manufactured in the USA, adhering to stringent quality standards.
The positive testimonials from numerous satisfied customers further attest to the efficacy and safety of Human Tonik’s products.
Meghan is a Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist from San Jose, California. She received her undergraduate degree from San Diego State University in 2015. Following an unexpected cross-country trip that landed her in Florida, she completed her didactic training through AdventHealth Orlando.
Meghan has extensive experience in multiple aspects of dietetics including critical care, motivational interviewing, writing, and research. She is passionate about health and wellness and has dedicated her free time to breaking down complicated nutrition topics and disseminating them to the public through the arena of writing.