Suntheanine is the brand name for the supplement L-Theanine, an amino acid. L-Theanine is commonly found in small amounts in green tea extract, but Suntheanine is pure L-Theanine. Suntheanine is known to reduce anxiety in humans, but is also used in dogs and cats to reduce stress and maintain calm behavior.
Suntheanine was produced and patented by Taiyo Kagaku Corporation which was founded in 1948 in Japan. Taiyo produced a technology that allowed them to make 100 percent pure L-Theanine as opposed to the less than pure L-Theanine from green tea extract. According to NutriSceince Innovations, in 1950 L-Theanine was discovered in green tea, and by 1964, the Japanese Ministry of Health and Welfare approved L-Theanine as a food additive. Suntheanine is sold through NutriScience Innovations, LLC.
Suntheanine is best known for its relaxation benefits and is clinically proven to reduce stress and anxiety in both humans and pets. According to the CALMIX information sheet, the ingredient Suntheanine also improves a pet's learning ability. One of the biggest benefits of Suntheanine is that it provides these results without causing drowsiness as is common with other medications. In addition, according to NutriScience Innovations, Suntheanine also boosts the effectiveness of some anti-cancer drugs.
How Suntheanine Works
Suntheanine is absorbed into the body from the large intestine. It is then transmitted directly to the brain. Once in the brain, Suntheanine increases the alpha waves in the brain. Alpha waves are associated with an alert, relaxed state of mind. In addition, according to Suntheanine, research at the Laboratory of Nutritional Biochemistry in Shizuoka, Japan indicates that Suntheanine in the brain also increases the levels of dopamine and GABA in the brain, also associated with a state of relaxed well-being.
According to Julie Thibeau of NutriScience Innovations in her article "L-Theanine: a potential relaxation ingredient for pets; an ingredient that has shown positive results when it comes to relaxing humans may have the same potential in pets," Taiyo was awarded U.S. patent 6,297,280 BI for Suntheanine for the suppression of behavior issues in pets. This patent involves Suntheanine along with other ingredients including cholines and unsaturated fatty acids to be used to suppress unwanted behavior in pets.
Pet Problems Addressed by Suntheanine
Suntheanine can help to resolve many unwanted behaviors in pets. One of the most basic of these would be excessive anxiety or nervousness. Other problems addressed include destructive behavior and scratching, urinating and defecating in the household, shaking, and excessive or abnormal barking or vocalization, according to Julie Thibeau. Suntheanine is generally administered in tablet or capsule form.