L-theanine is an active ingredient found in the leaves of a tea (including green tea, black tea and matcha). From China and India, the slightly bitter luxury food spread around the world from the beginning of the 17th century. Although the positive health effects of tea have been known for centuries, the natural active ingredient L-theanine was only discovered in 1949, and research has been ongoing ever since. According to the findings, green and black tea contain flavonoids that have an antioxidant effect (i.e. prevent cell damage).

There are also many varieties of L-theanine, an amino acid that is involved in building GABA and is known to support the body's defences. It is supposed to stimulate the formation of alpha waves in the brain, which are responsible for the production of hormones (dopamine and serotonin) and thereby trigger relaxation, inner peace and feelings of happiness in the body.

Other positive effects of tea or L-theanine include:

- L-theanine for anxiety relieve
- L-theanine for sleep quality improvement
- L-theanine for gentle stimulation and greater alertness
- L-theanine for concentration
- L-theanine for support of the mental functions (concentration, thinking skills)
- L-theanine for support of mental relaxation
- L-theanine for the immune system
- L-theanine for digestion support
- L-theanine lowers blood pressure and heart rate
- L-theanine helps in reducing stress
- L-theanine supports regeneration (e.g. after exercise)
- L-theanine should prevent dementia and Alzheimer's

L-theanine benefits and areas of application

Due to the L-theanine effect, this supplement is often used when a person needs a little energy boost, but at the same time, to stay focused and calm.

Since it also supports thinking and memory performance, L-Theanine (in a low dose) is particularly popular when doing mentally demanding tasks, before exams or in similar challenging situations.

Whenever coffee, espresso or energy drinks are a bit too much of a good thing or their side effects (e.g. high pulse or nervousness) are a hindrance, you can use the alternative in capsule form.

L-theanine also partially reverses the negative effects of caffeine: in addition to its antihypertensive effect, it also helps you fall asleep, which is often difficult when taking too much caffeine during the day. Especially in professional groups that work in shifts or mainly at night (e.g. emergency services, police and fire brigade, musicians, restaurant and bar staff, etc.) like to fall back on the effects of L-theanine, also because there often little time is left to be completely in Rest to enjoy a tea or coffee.

Like green tea, L-theanine has other health-promoting properties and is therefore often a good choice for people with a weak immune system, stressful everyday life and high blood pressure. However, if you have pre-existing conditions, you should consult the doctor before taking it.

L-theanine is also said to have antioxidant effects.

Everything you need to know about potential L-theanine side effects can be found here.

Frequently asked questions and L-theanine experiences from customers.

How does L-theanine work against anxiety?

Mild anxiety and panic disorders are sometimes also treated with L-theanine tablets or powder. The experience with L-theanine for anxiety is consistently positive.  You can buy L-Theanin here.

Many customers use L-theanine to relax and also to calm down a little. However, L-theanine does not make you tired or drowsy - as is often the case with strong drugs. The use of L-theanine in acute anxiety states (e.g. in schizophrenia) is currently being researched.

The L-theanine relaxation effect is based on the production of serotonin and dopamine, which have a positive influence on our mood and inner peace. L-theanine for anxiety attacks (mild) works quickly - in about 30 minutes at relatively low doses - nonetheless, psychotherapeutic or medical treatment for severe anxiety and panic disorders is always the very first and most important step.

How does L-theanine work for depression?

Many users also report positive experiences with L-theanine in depression.

As already described in the section above, it affects the alpha waves in the brain and thus the hormone level. The effect is usually described as awakening, mood-enhancing and positive.

It can also be used to treat sleep disorders, a common symptom of depression. (More on this below).

L-theanine can be taken as a supplement, i.e. for mild depressive episodes (e.g. winter depression). Depression is a very serious illness that should be treated by a specialist or through psychotherapy. L-theanine can also be recommended after consulting a doctor.

How does L-theanine work for sleeping?

Taking L-theanine to help you fall asleep is still considered a kind of insider tip.

In addition, it improves the quality of sleep and reduces the effects of too much caffeine (nervousness, jitteriness, high blood pressure, etc.)

For better sleep quality and faster falling asleep with L-theanine, the dosage is important. Read  more about L-Theanin dosage  in our blog. In general, as confirmed by users with experiences with L-theanine, a dose of around 200mg about 30 to 45 minutes before going to bed helps you to fall asleep more easily and also to sleep better. Buy nootropics online.


Text author:
Kay Svegler
Communications, PR, American Studies, University of Leipzig
Journalist and freelance writer (e.g. Süddeutsche Zeitung, BILD, MDR etc.)
Former Senior PR Manager for Fischer Appelt, Sustainability and Diversity Manager for DKB