Why these Supplements?
- We gather products that were shown to work in clinical trials.
- We find brands whose ingredients have been tested to make sure they contain the right stuff (usually through ConsumerLabs or US
- We narrow that down to the most affordable options and list them above.
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Ubiquinol and its oxidized form, coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10), have been the subject of a significant amount of scientific research due to their role in cellular energy production and their potential as antioxidants. They are commonly investigated for their potential to improve cardiovascular health, enhance energy levels, and reduce symptoms of various diseases.
- Cellular Consequences of Coenzyme Q10 Deficiency in Neurodegeneration of the Retina and Brain
- Manzar H, Abdulhussein D, Yap TE, Cordeiro MF. Cellular Consequences of Coenzyme Q10 Deficiency in Neurodegeneration of the Retina and Brain. Int J Mol Sci. 2020;21(23):9299. Published 2020 Dec 6. doi:10.3390/ijms21239299
N-Acetylcysteine (NAC) is a supplement and medication derived from the amino acid L-cysteine. NAC helps replenish the antioxidant glutathione, which could protect brain cells from oxidative stress. Oxidative stress is implicated in various psychiatric disorders, including depression and schizophrenia. NAC has been suggested to regulate levels of glutamate, an important neurotransmitter in the brain. Dysregulated glutamate signaling is implicated in conditions like depression, bipolar disorder, and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Although the mechanisms are not fully understood, some evidence suggests that NAC might influence dopamine systems in the brain, which could be beneficial in conditions like addiction or ADHD.
- N-Acetylcysteine for Nonsuicidal Self-Injurious Behavior in Adolescents: An Open-Label Pilot Study
- Bhaskara S. N-Acetylcysteine augmentation in refractory obsessive–compulsive disorder. J Psychiatry Neurosci. 2019;44(3):215-216. doi:10.1503/jpn.180179
- Raghu G, Berk M, Campochiaro PA, et al. The Multifaceted Therapeutic Role of N-Acetylcysteine (NAC) in Disorders Characterized by Oxidative Stress. Curr Neuropharmacol. 2021;19(8):1202-1224. doi:10.2174/1570159X1966620123014410
Magnesium glycinate is a form of magnesium, an essential mineral, bound to glycine, an amino acid. This particular form of magnesium is well-absorbed by the body and is less likely to cause digestive issues like diarrhea, which can be common with other forms of magnesium such as magnesium oxide. Magnesium is involved in more than 300 biochemical reactions in the body and is essential for a variety of physiological functions like nerve transmission, muscle contraction, and bone development.
- Tarleton EK, Littenberg B, MacLean CD, Kennedy AG, Daley C. Role of magnesium supplementation in the treatment of depression: A randomized clinical trial. PLoS One. 2017 Jun 27;12(6):e0180067. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0180067. PMID: 28654669; PMCID: PMC5487054.
- Boyle NB, Lawton C, Dye L. The Effects of Magnesium Supplementation on Subjective Anxiety and Stress-A Systematic Review. Nutrients. 2017;9(5):429. Published 2017 Apr 26. doi:10.3390/nu905042
Magnesium L-threonate is a form of magnesium that is chelated to threonic acid, a metabolite of vitamin C. This form of magnesium is believed to have better bioavailability and is specifically designed to cross the blood-brain barrier, making it of particular interest in the context of brain health and mental well-being.
- Abumaria N, Luo L, Ahn M, Liu G. Magnesium supplement enhances spatial-context pattern separation and prevents fear overgeneralization. Behav Pharmacol. 2013 Aug;24(4):255-63. doi: 10.1097/FBP.0b013e32836357c7. PMID: 23764903.
- Pochwat B, Szewczyk B, Sowa-Kucma M, Siwek A, Doboszewska U, Piekoszewski W, Gruca P, Papp M, Nowak G. Antidepressant-like activity of magnesium in the chronic mild stress model in rats: alterations in the NMDA receptor subunits. Int J Neuropsychopharmacol. 2014 Mar;17(3):393-405. doi: 10.1017/S1461145713001089. Epub 2013 Sep 26. PMID: 24067405.
Lavender oil is an essential oil obtained from the lavender plant (genus Lavandula), often through steam distillation of its flowers. Silexan is a specific, standardized preparation of lavender oil that has been approved for use in Germany for the treatment of generalized anxiety disorder (GAD).
- Kasper S, Gastpar M, Müller WE, Volz HP, Möller HJ, Dienel A, Schläfke S. Silexan, an orally administered Lavandula oil preparation, is effective in the treatment of ‘subsyndromal’ anxiety disorder: a randomized, double-blind, placebo controlled trial. Int Clin Psychopharmacol. 2010 Sep;25(5):277-87. doi: 10.1097/YIC.0b013e32833b3242. PMID: 20512042.
- Kasper S, Müller WE, Volz HP, Möller HJ, Koch E, Dienel A. Silexan in anxiety disorders: Clinical data and pharmacological background. World J Biol Psychiatry. 2018 Sep;19(6):412-420. doi: 10.1080/15622975.2017.1331046. Epub 2017 Jun 19. PMID: 28511598.
- Moeini M, Khadibi M, Bekhradi R, Mahmoudian SA, Nazari F. Effect of aromatherapy on the quality of sleep in ischemic heart disease patients hospitalized in intensive care units of heart hospitals of the Isfahan University of Medical Sciences. Iran J Nurs Midwifery Res. 2010;15(4):234-239.
L-Theanine is an amino acid commonly found in tea leaves and some types of mushrooms. It is similar in structure to glutamate, a naturally occurring amino acid in the body that helps transmit nerve impulses in the brain. L-Theanine is known to promote relaxation without drowsiness. It is believed to interact with the brain’s neurotransmitters, such as GABA (Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid), which can inhibit or reduce the activity of neurons, thereby calming the mind and reducing stress and anxiety.
- Kimura, K., Ozeki, M., Juneja, L. R., & Ohira, H. (2007). L-Theanine reduces psychological and physiological stress responses. Biological psychology, 74(1), 39-45.
- Lyon, M. R., Kapoor, M. P., & Juneja, L. R. (2011). The effects of L-theanine (Suntheanine®) on objective sleep quality in boys with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD): a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial. Journal of medicinal food, 14(12), 1573-1574.
- Haskell-Ramsay, C. F., Kennedy, D. O., Milne, A. L., Wesnes, K. A., & Scholey, A. B. (2016). The acute effects of L-theanine in comparison with alprazolam on anticipatory anxiety in humans. Human Psychopharmacology: Clinical and Experimental, 19(7), 457-465.
Turmeric is a bright yellow spice derived from the root of the Curcuma longa plant. Curcumin is the main active ingredient in turmeric, responsible for its vibrant color and many of its health benefits. Turmeric and curcumin have been studied for a variety of health benefits, including potential applications in mental health.
- Sanmukhani, J., Satodia, V., Trivedi, J., Patel, T., Tiwari, D., Panchal, B., … & Tripathi, C. B. (2014). Efficacy and safety of curcumin in major depressive disorder: a randomized controlled trial. Phytotherapy Research, 28(4), 579-585.
- Ng, Q. X., Koh, S. S. H., Chan, H. W., & Ho, C. Y. X. (2017). Clinical use of curcumin in depression: A meta-analysis. Journal of the American Medical Directors Association, 18(6), 503-508.
Saffron is a spice derived from the flower of Crocus sativus, commonly known as the saffron crocus. Saffron has been used for thousands of years in traditional medicine for various ailments. Saffron has been studied for its potential antidepressant effects. It is thought to influence the levels of neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine, which play key roles in mood regulation. Some research suggests that saffron may have anxiolytic (anti-anxiety) properties, though the mechanisms are not fully understood.
- Hausenblas, H. A., Saha, D., Dubyak, P. J., & Anton, S. D. (2013). Saffron (Crocus sativus L.) and major depressive disorder: a meta-analysis of randomized clinical trials. Journal of Integrative Medicine, 11(6), 377-383.
- Agha-Hosseini, M., Kashani, L., Aleyaseen, A., Ghoreishi, A., Rahmanpour, H., Zarrinara, A. R., & Akhondzadeh, S. (2008). Crocus sativus L. (saffron) in the treatment of premenstrual syndrome: a double-blind, randomised and placebo-controlled trial. BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, 115(4), 515-519.
Ginger is a flowering plant whose rhizome, commonly known as ginger root, is widely used as a spice and in traditional medicine. It is native to Southeast Asia and has been used for thousands of years for various medicinal purposes, including digestive issues, nausea, and inflammation. Chronic inflammation has been implicated in a range of mental health disorders, including depression and anxiety. Ginger contains bioactive compounds like gingerol that have potent anti-inflammatory properties, which could potentially help alleviate symptoms associated with these conditions. Oxidative stress has been linked to various mental health conditions, including depression and anxiety disorders. Ginger has antioxidant properties that may help combat oxidative stress, thus supporting brain health.
- Reference: Bhatt, S., Maheshwari, A., & Verma, S. K. (2018). Zingiber officinale Roscoe (ginger) as an adjuvant in antidepressant therapy: A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Phytotherapy Research, 32(7), 1320-1326.
- Iwata, M., Ota, K. T., & Duman, R. S. (2016). The inflammasome: pathways linking psychological stress, depression, and systemic illnesses. Brain, behavior, and immunity, 31, 105-114.