My experience with Passion Flower.
Following my second divorce and retirement from the military I up and moved to Europe with my two older children. I planned to go to school in Scotland. I had a huge house in North Carolina I left behind. Due to some immigration issues in the UK, I ended up in a country I had not anticipated living in for a year (Romania) and found myself a year behind schedule in my grand plan. Money was tight. I had to get my kids in a school. I still owned a vacant house in the US. Etc., etc. I would wake up at night so stressed out I couldn’t get back to sleep until about 30 minutes before the rest of the country was waking up to start the day. Eventually I was introduced to GABA and began taking it 30-60minutes before going to bed and it worked wonders. My mind was at ease and I was able to sleep through the night.
Now, it is important to note GABA is not a sleep aid. GABA simply puts the breaks on when your mind is running full speed and won’t stop. But with all things, after a while I was beginning to feel like the GABA wasn’t having the same effect. Perhaps my GABA receptors were being bombarded with too much GABA and were becoming resistant. I then started taking Passion Flower and have since had great results. I will add, while GABA never made me sleepy, Passion Flower is known to be used as a sleep aid as well as with anxiety so I would caution against using it during the day unless you’re a night shift worker.
One the greatest problems plaguing veterans and first responders is anxiety. An anxious person doesn’t always look like a caricature drawing of someone vibrating, or the stereotypical “tweeker” (someone who is fidgety, borderline schizophrenic always looking over their shoulder. Anxiety just means you’ve got a lot going on and your body is responding to the stress. It is a natural reaction designed for protection. The problem arises when your body can no longer regulate the stress and return to homeostasis.
In a previous article I discussed the inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA. Part of the problem with persistent anxiety could be due to the depletion of GABA and the body’s inability to produce enough GABA to regulate the effects of stress/anxiety. While GABA can be taken as a supplement, everybody has different experiences with different supplements and taking GABA may not be as beneficial to some as taking a Passion Flower supplement.
In the links below you can read about the history of Passion Flower, but the big take away’s are 1) Passion Flower may elevate GABA levels or 2) Passion Flower may enhance GABA receptors in the brain.
What’s nice about taking a Passion Flower supplement as opposed to steadily taking GABA is with taking GABA you are taking an exogenous neurotransmitter. By taking Passion Flower you are setting the conditions for your body’s neurotransmitter production mechanism to flourish (pun intended) and naturally optimize your body’s GABA levels.