Video Transcript: “Hey, this is Matt Finch. I’m a certified addiction counselor and a certified addiction recovery coach. And in this video, I’m going to teach you about a really cool research study on an over-the-counter, non-prescription supplement that actually had really good results in a study on opioid withdrawal with monkeys.
So, let’s go through it right here. This is exactly what the study says: L-Theanine, an amino acid found in green tea, is sold in the United States as a dietary supplement to reduce stress and improve cognition and mood. The observations that L-Theanine has been shown to inhibit caffeine stimulatory effects and that caffeine produces precipitated withdrawal signs in opioid-addicted monkeys and some opioid withdrawal signs in some normal monkeys.
So, basically sounds like what this study is saying is caffeine does not go good when you’re going through opioid withdrawal. But I already knew that. You probably already know this as well. So, anyway, in this study, they suggest the L-Theanine in the green tea and other types of tea counteracts the caffeine. It suggests that L-Theanine may suppress opioid withdrawal signs. So, due to this assumption, they went ahead and they tested this theory out on monkeys.
Additionally, L-Theanine produces effects (that means anti-anxiety) in humans, indicating that it has anti-anxiety properties. Thus, in these studies, we determined whether L-Theanine attenuates (that means reduces) opioid withdrawal signs in morphine-dependent monkeys, a model for spontaneous opioid withdrawal in human opioid addicts.
We also evaluated whether L-Theanine decreases anxiety-like behavior in mice, using the elevated plus-maze and marble bearing assays.
Here’s the conclusion, the results of the study. L-Theanine significantly attenuated designated opioid withdrawal signs (that means that it had a significant benefit towards alleviating or reducing the severity of the opioid withdrawal symptoms in the monkeys, including fighting, rigid abdominal muscles, vocalizing on palpitation of abdomen, pacing, wrenching and wet dog shakes and masturbation.
It had a relatively quick onset of action that persisted for at least 2.5 hours. L-Theanine also produced anxiolytic-like effects in the elevated plus-maze and the marble bearing assay in naive mice at doses that did not significantly affect motor behavior.
The results of these studies suggest that L-Theanine may be useful in the pharmacotherapy of treating opioid withdrawal as well as anxiety-associated behaviors.
The supplement that I use every once in a while is a 200 mg sublingual. It’s a pretty good dose. The sublingual, you put underneath your tongue until it dissolved. And here’s what’s so cool about L-Theanine. It increases your dopamine, so that’s the pleasure/motivation chemical that we create in our brains. It’s often deficient with people coming off of opioids. It also increases serotonin, that’s a neurotransmitter that helps you feel emotionally relaxed.
And it increases GABA, the long version of that is gamma-aminobutyric acid, which is an inhibitory neurotransmitter that calms down the signals in the brain, so it’s a very relaxing neurotransmitter. When somebody takes a Valium or a Xanax or an Ativan or Klonopin, those all increase GABA in the brain and thereby relaxing the mind and body.
So, I don’t think that taking L-Theanine alone is gonna have a huge benefit for opioid withdrawal, but, you can take up to 120o mg of this a day. So that would be something like 400 mg morning, afternoon, and in the evening. Some people can even tolerate more without getting any side effects.
This is just for informational use and education. It’s not any medical advice. I am not a doctor. As I said, I am just a certified addiction counselor and a certified addiction recovery coach. So look into this. I’m gonna put a link to the studies on this in the description.
So, again, to review: Coming off of opioids leads to serious, serious anxiety, insomnia, and many other symptoms. And now this study said that when they gave L-Theanine to monkeys going through morphine withdrawal, which is a type of opioid, it significantly attenuated opioid withdrawal signs. And when they’re putting these monkeys (actually mice) through the maze it actually reduced their anxiety and they performed better.
So, L-Theanine is an over-the-counter, inexpensive dietary supplement you can get without a prescription, ranges probably from maybe $7-20 depending on the type and the brand and the size of the bottle you get.
It increases your dopamine, serotonin, and GABA, all pass the blood-brain barrier. Also, it helps your brain go into alpha waves, which is beneath the beta waves so it’s more of like a meditative kind of idling, hypnotic state, and thus no wonder it was shown to help with anxiety with these monkeys and with their withdrawal signs.”