Alone, coffee gives you the energy, focus, and mood boost you need to tackle your day.
Long term, America’s favorite morning beverage is shown to help protect against cognitive decline, heart and liver failure , certain cancers, as well as lessen your risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
However, there are some downsides to be a coffee drinking.
It can make you jittery and feel overstimulated, include a crash at the end of your “high”, and upset your stomach.
That’s why I want to share with you a simple way to mitigate these unwanted side effects while at the same time enhancing coffee’s desirable benefits even greater.
I’d like to introduce you to L-theanine, an amino acid found pretty much exclusively in teas.
Alone, L-theanine promotes relaxation and is coveted for its anxiety and stress relieving power.
L-theanine also processes impressive cognitive benefits, which include improved working memory, enhanced learning, and increased alpha brain wave activity.
As you can tell, Coffee and L-Theanine have somewhat polar effects on the mind and body.
However, when the two are combined the effects do not simply negate one another.
Instead, they work synergistically, allowing you to fully benefit from the positive aspects of both compounds without any negative side effects.
The energy and motivation from the coffee is harnessed but kept in control with the addition of L-theanine.
I like to think of L-theanine as the ying to coffees yang.
Together, they create the ultimate productivity and focus enhancing combination.
What Science Says About L-Theanine
A recent study from the Netherlands confirmed that “The combination of L-theanine and caffeine improves the cognitive performance and increases subject alertness.”
Beyond that, the combination can help people to “focus attention during a demanding cognitive task.”
The Cognitive Neurophysiology Laboratory in New York conducted testing for four days on volunteers from the age of 21 and 40. They found that L-theanine and caffeine in combination positively affect human cognition and caused measurable increases in alpha brain waves.
One UK-based study published in Nutritional Neuroscience found that the combination of L-theanine and caffeine improved both speed and accuracy of performance when switching between tasks (multitasking). It also reduced people’s susceptibility to distractions during a memory task.
The researchers summarized:
“These results replicate previous evidence which suggests that L-theanine and caffeine in combination are beneficial for improving performance on cognitively demanding tasks.”
A Dutch study gave participants L-theanine and caffeine in a ratio of 2-to-1. Then they asked the participants to complete two attention tasks at 10 minutes and again at 60 minutes after ingestion.
The researchers stated that “The results support previous evidence that L-theanine and caffeine in combination can improve attention.”
Finally, a review of multiple studies done on the potent combination was published by the School of Psychology in Australia.
They concluded that “L-theanine may interact with caffeine to enhance performance in terms of attention switching and the ability to ignore distraction; this is likely to be reflective of higher-level cognitive activity.”
How to Harness the Power of L-Theanine
The first involves buying L-theanine powder and simply adding it to your coffee in the morning at a ratio of 2-to-1 …or roughly 200 milligrams of L-theanine per cup.
Your other option is to buy special supplements that only contain caffeine and L-theanine in the proper ratio.
This means you do lose out on the other health benefits of coffee. But they can be much more convenient when you’re in a pinch for some needed energy and focus.
Also, the energy from a caffeine/L-theanine supplement is reported to be more potent and “pure.”
No matter which route you go, you’re sure to experience more energy and better focus, without having to succumb to coffee’s jittery payback.