This Supplement Enhances Attention
L Theanine is a substance found in tea leaves. It's similar to a neurotransmitter called glutamate. And it's used as a supplement that can affect brain activity. Some studies have looked at how L Theanine influences attention in people.
The studies have used various doses of L Theanine and different methods to test attention. The results are mixed, with some studies showing that L Theanine has an effect on attention, but usually, higher doses are needed.
Researchers think that L Theanine may change brain activity related to attention, especially in tasks that involve distinguishing between important and unimportant information. Some studies suggest that L Theanine might make it easier to focus on important things and reduce mind-wandering.
Researchers recently published a new study that explored the affects of L Theanine on different kinds of attention:
For the study, researchers looked at the effects of L Theanine on three attention tasks:
- Reaction Time -- This test measures how quickly a person can respond to something they see or hear, like pressing a button when they see a light flash.
- Rapid Visual Information Processing -- In this test, people need to pay attention and quickly identify specific patterns or numbers that appear on a screen to test their sustained attention or vigilance.
- Stop-Signal Task -- This task assesses a person's ability to stop themselves from doing something, like stopping a button press, when they suddenly hear a signal telling them to stop. It checks inhibitory control, attention, and reaction speed.
Researchers recruited young adult volunteers who were screened to make sure they were healthy. They were given different doses of L Theanine (100, 200, and 400 mg) or a placebo (a substance with no effect) in a double-blind and controlled experiment. The participants performed the three attention tests before and after taking L Theanine or placebo.
When participants took 100 or 200 milligrams of L Theanine, they became faster at the reaction time test. However, the highest dose of 400 milligrams didn't show the same improvement.
All doses of L Theanine improved participants' ability to stay focused in the rapid visual information processing test. But there was no significant difference between the doses.
Participants who took L Theanine didn't show any significant improvement in the stop-signal task.
Overall, the study suggests that L Theanine can help with simple attention tasks and keeping you focused. But it may not enhance performance for tasks that require stopping yourself from doing something.
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