I am using valerian root daily for anxiety. However, today I learned that it severely decreases levels of glutamate which is the neurotransmitter that helps us with memory and learning. So, from there can you say that, valerian root causes slow down of learning?
Atrox, this is something that you could test. This is a tool that is often used by self-researchers to assess their cognition: Quantified Mind
Thanks, but I need a direct research-based answer to my question, if possible.
Look at Wikipedia. Your body produces glutamate, so I doubt the root severely depresses glutamate - more like GABA, if at all. What evidence do you have of this?
But, I read more research which is making me confused now:
Selective Interactions of Valeriana officinalis Extracts and Valerenic Acid with [3H]Glutamate Binding to Rat Synaptic Membranes (nih.gov)
Here it says that group 2 has experienced a reduction in glutamate binding but group one which used glycine along with valerian extract experienced an increase in glutamate binding.
However, the graph shows that valerian increases the glutamate binding to a certain extent and then decreases it if used too much.
So, I don’t fully understand now if in my case if it decreases the binding in glutamate or not. I am using around 1-3 grams a day of valerian root. I don’t know if it affects it or not.
Yes, totally understand. Like @Marc_Mathys I did a search and read some abstracts and quickly saw that the relation between cognition and Valerian is not easy to specify with confidence, even for experts. (Which I obviously am not.) Some of the literature seemed to suggest effects that would involve cognitive improvement rather than decline.
This seems like an area where a direct, research-based answer may simply not be available. In these cases where existing, accessible knowledge doesn’t yield an answer, it may actually be more efficient and relevant to do a quick test. If Valerian causes measurable cognitive deficit via effects on glutamate levels, this should become observable within hours or days rather than weeks or months. So a personal test doesn’t seem implausible.