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L-Theanine for Sleep? Top 5 Theanine Uses Explained

L-Theanine, the active compound extracted from tea, Camellia sinensis, is a great non-dietary amino acid for promoting a calm, relaxed mood. It’s also a good supplement to help promote a focused mindset, and it may help to improve your memory and cognition when you use it with caffeine.


People use L-Theanine for sleep due to it's relaxing effects. In this article, we’ll explore the top five ways that you can benefit from using L-Theanine. For more information about L-Theanine, take a read through our L-Theanine product description or our Ultimate Guide to L-Theanine.

man relaxed used l-theanine for calming

1.    L-Theanine for Stress

One of the main reasons that many people use L-Theanine is for its ability to help reduce feelings of stress. L-Theanine is one of the main active components in tea, which has been used for thousands of years as a relaxing and calming drink. As the English say: “Keep calm and drink tea.”


Researchers have shown that L-Theanine has the ability to help reduce feelings of stress and to help promote a calm and relaxed state of mind. Scientists recently found that using L-Theanine for stress is effective and results are seen in both psychological and physiological responses (lower blood pressure and heart rate in response to stress).[1]


2.    L-Theanine for Studying

pretty woman studying with l-theanine L-Theanine has the potential to help improve focus and memory

Many people enjoy taking L-Theanine for studying. The anti-stress effects are great for just before exams and tests. L-Theanine may also help to improve cognition and memory, which is just what you need for studying. These effects are in addition to the focusing and calming effects that L-Theanine produces.


L-Theanine for studying is especially effective when you combine the L-Theanine with caffeine. Researchers have conducted a number of studies that show the benefits of using L-Theanine and caffeine in exams. The improvements in exam performance were thought to be due to the focusing, energizing, and anti-stress effects of this dietary supplement combination.[2]


3.    L-Theanine for Sleep

Liftmode's L-Theanine 200mg Liftmode's L-theanine, 99+% purity

Some users also take L-Theanine for sleep, although this is often thought to be quite a subtle effect. There is scientific evidence which indicates that L-Theanine may be beneficial in promoting healthy sleep. One study looked into the effects of L-Theanine supplements for sleep in a group of boys with attention difficulties. The researchers found that L-Theanine was effective for sleep:


This study demonstrates that 400 mg daily of L-theanine is safe and effective in improving some aspects of sleep quality in boys....”[3]


Another great way to use L-Theanine for sleep is to combine it with the great amino acid supplement, L-Tryptophan. L-Tryptophan is a great supplement for improving your mood. It gets converted into serotonin in your brain, which can then be used to make melatonin – the sleeping hormone.[4] L-Tryptophan and L-Theanine for sleep is a highly effective supplement stack!


4.    L-Theanine for Energy

Liftmode supplements: caffeine + L-Theanine Liftmode's Caffeine + L-Theanine for an energy and focus boost

L-Theanine is also often used to improve energy and focus. Although it is not a stimulant – meaning it is not known for its great energy boost – a number of users report a noticeable increase in energy when taking L-Theanine supplements.[5] Another great thing is that using L-Theanine for sleep helps to improve your energy levels the next day.


The best way to improve your energy and focus with L-Theanine is to combine it with caffeine. Researchers and users alike have indicated that L-Theanine with caffeine increases mental clarity, focus, and energy.[6] This is a great stack for anyone looking to boost their mental alertness and energy levels – students, professionals, and athletes come to mind as three groups of people who would benefit greatly.


5.    L-Theanine for Weight

weight loss concept with belly and measuring tape Some people use L-Theanine for weight loss

Some people use L-Theanine supplements for promoting healthy weight. At this point, there is not much evidence showing that L-Theanine is effective at helping your body to maintain a healthy weight.


However, at least one study indicated that L-Theanine may have the potential to help reduce blood pressure increases related to stress.[7] High blood pressure is a common indicator of being overweight and has been linked to weight gain. Furthermore, a number of animal studies have indicated the potential use of L-Theanine for maintaining a healthy weight.[8]


Animal studies often have unrelated results when studied in humans, so these should always be taken with a pinch of salt. The best option for maintaining a healthy weight is always a healthy diet that is high in fruit and vegetables and low in animal fat and processed goods. This along with a healthy lifestyle ensures a healthy weight. If you are interested in how sleep can affect your weight, take a read through our new Biohacking article!



In summary, people tend to use L-Theanine for a number of great benefits. One of the top benefits is using L-Theanine for sleep. This wonderful supplement helps to reduce feelings of stress and to promote a calm, relaxed state of mind. It is the active component of tea, which has always been known to have calming effects.


Furthermore, L-Theanine is great for boosting cognitive performance and mental focus, especially if you combine it with caffeine. It may have the potential to help maintain a healthy weight but more studies are needed.




[1] L-Theanine reduces psychological and physiological stress responses, K Kimura et al., Biol Psychol. 2007 Jan;74(1):39-45. Epub 2006 Aug 22.

[2] Improving College Exam Performance with L-theanine and Caffeine, H Gong, People, Ideas, and Things Journal, University of North Carolina online, Published by the PIT Journal: Cycle 5, 2014

[3] 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, MR Lyon et al., Altern Med Rev. 2011 Dec;16(4):348-54.

[4] Effects of L-tryptophan on sleepiness and on sleep, E Hartmann, J Psychiatr Res. 1982-1983;17(2):107-13.

[5] L theanine has changed my life, 2013 Thread on Reddit.com, retrieved on 3 November 2016

[6] The combination of L-theanine and caffeine improves cognitive performance and increases subjective alertness, T Giesbrecht et al., Nutr Neurosci. 2010 Dec;13(6):283-90.

[7] Effects of L-theanine or caffeine intake on changes in blood pressure under physical and psychological stresses, A Yoto et al., J Physiol Anthropol. 2012; 31(1): 28, Published online 2012 Oct 29.

[8] Anti-obesity effects of three major components of green tea, catechins, caffeine and theanine, in mice, G Zheng et al., In Vivo. 2004 Jan-Feb;18(1):55-62.