If you’ve ever enjoyed a hot cup of green tea or a matcha latte you’ve also been enjoying the benefits of L-theanine. Not sure what L-theanine is? Keep reading to find out its benefits and how we can increase our intake.

So, What Is L-Theanine?

L-theanine is a water-soluble amino acid naturally found in black tea leaves and green tea leaves. The highest amounts are found in green tea leaves, making matcha powder, like Vital Proteins Matcha Collagen and Vital Proteins Matcha Collagen Latte, an excellent source.

How Does L-Theanine Work?

Research shows that L-theanine promotes an “alert calm” in those who consume it. This happens about 30 minutes after consumption when the amino acid crosses the blood-brain barrier, where it is then able to increase alpha waves in the brain. This increase in alpha waves is what relaxes the mind without also causing drowsiness.

Okay, What Else Does It Do?

There are other benefits as well. The changes in alpha brain waves from consuming it have been shown to improve selective attention during mental tasks. This makes the consumption of matcha especially beneficial since it contains both caffeine and L-theanine. It has also been shown to help improve your mood by helping in the production of GABA, an inhibitory relaxing transmitter.

How Can I Get It?

There are many oral supplements available for purchase, including our Zen Collagen Shot, to get this important amino acid in your diet. Otherwise, make yourself a hot cup of tea, sit back and let the alert-calm sink in. For additional recipes containing L-theanine, take a look at our full list of collagen recipes.