The Role of GABA Neurotransmitter in the Body

Have you ever experienced stress, anxiety, or difficulty sleeping? If yes, then you’ve probably heard of the neurotransmitter GABA, or gamma-aminobutyric acid. GABA is an inhibitory neurotransmitter that’s essential for regulating brain activity and maintaining a healthy nervous system. In this blog post, we’ll explore what GABA neurotransmitter does, the effects of too much or too little GABA, how to increase GABA levels, and its benefits.

What is GABA?

GABA is a type of neurotransmitter that’s found in the brain, spinal cord, and other areas of the body. Its main function is to inhibit or reduce the activity of neurons in the brain and nervous system. This inhibition helps to reduce anxiety, stress, and promote relaxation.

GABA operates by binding to specific receptors (GABA receptors) on the surface of neurons. When GABA attaches to these receptors, it blocks the activity of the neurons. In addition to this, GABA also has a role in the regulation of other neurotransmitters such as serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine.

What Does GABA Do to Serotonin?

GABA and serotonin neurotransmitters are both important for managing mood. GABA can enhance the release of serotonin, and when the brain is overwhelmed by stress, GABA can help the serotonin neurotransmitters bind to their receptors, reducing anxiety and promoting a relaxed state.

What Happens when GABA is Low?

Low GABA levels in the body can lead to several negative health consequences that include:

  1. Anxiety:
    Lack of inhibitory neurotransmitters such as GABA can result in excessive worry, tension, and agitation.

  2. Insomnia:
    GABA is essential for the regulation of sleep, and low levels can lead to difficulty sleeping, insomnia, and daytime fatigue.

  3. Depression:
    Low GABA levels in the brain can contribute to the development of depression.

  4. Epilepsy:
    GABA is essential for preventing excessive neuronal activity that may lead to seizures. Low levels of GABA can contribute to seizure activity.

  5. Panic Disorder:
    GABA helps regulate the body’s response to stress and is necessary in anxiety management. Low levels of GABA may trigger panic attacks.

What Happens if GABA is Too High?

While low levels of GABA neurotransmitter can have adverse effects on health, too much GABA isn’t recommended either. Excess GABA may cause:

  1. Drowsiness:
    Too much GABA can lead to excessive drowsiness, lethargy, and fatigue.

  2. Difficulty Concentrating:
    Overstimulation of GABA can lead to difficulty focusing and decreased alertness.

  3. Breathing Difficulties:
    Excessive GABA can interfere with the body’s regulation of breathing, leading to respiratory depression.

GABA Dosage and Benefits

GABA neurotransmitter supplementation can have several benefits, including:

  1. Reducing Anxiety and Depression:
    GABA supplementation can help regulate mood, reduce anxiety, and relieve symptoms of depression.

  2. Promoting Relaxation and Improved Sleep:
    GABA can promote relaxation and improve sleep quality.

  3. Pain Relief:
    GABA has pain-relieving properties, which can help relieve symptoms of chronic pain.

  4. Seizure Control:
    GABA supplementation can help reduce the frequency and severity of seizures.

  5. Blood Pressure Regulation:
    GABA is involved in regulating blood pressure and can have a positive impact on heart health.

As for a GABA dosage, there isn’t a clear-cut answer. Many experts recommend taking between 250mg to 750mg of GABA supplements daily. However, it’s always best to consult a healthcare professional before starting any new supplement regimen.

Does GABA Increase Dopamine or Serotonin?

GABA neurotransmitter can increase the release of dopamine, although it can also regulate the availability of serotonin. GABA has a role in modulating dopamine levels to maintain balance between excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmitters.

How to Increase GABA

Here are some ways to naturally increase GABA levels in the body:

  1. Taking GABA Supplements:
    GABA neurotransmitter supplements are available in the market, and they can help increase GABA levels in the body.

  2. Exercise:
    Regular exercise can help increase GABA levels as well as boost mood and reduce anxiety.

  3. Sleep:
    Getting adequate sleep, ideally 7 to 8 hours a night, can enhance GABA levels in the body and promote relaxation.

  4. Meditation:
    Meditation is a great way to relax and reduce stress, ultimately leading to increased GABA levels.

  5. Reduce Alcohol Intake:
    Excessive alcohol intake can inhibit the function of GABA neurotransmitter.

GABA and Alcohol

Alcohol consumption can interefere with the function of GABA neurotransmitter, which is why people might feel more relaxed and lively after alcohol consumption. However, overconsumption of alcohol can eventually lead to a decrease in GABA neurotransmitters levels, which can alter mood and lead to negative health consequences.


GABA neurotransmitter has an essential role in maintaining the body’s health and regulating brain activity, including mood and sleep. Low GABA levels can lead to several negative health consequences, including anxiety, depression, and seizures, while an excessive amount of GABA can cause drowsiness, breathing difficulties, and difficulty concentrating. You can naturally enhance your GABA neurotransmitter levels through regular exercise, meditation, and a healthy sleep routine. In case of deficiencies, supplementing with GABA can also offer numerous health benefits. Understanding how your body utilizes GABA neurotransmitter can help you manage your health more effectively.