Alpha GPC for Depression (A complete Guide)
In this writeup, “ Alpha GPC for Depression” will be discussed, glimpse about depression and it’s a symptom, other names of GPCcholine, Alpha GPC and Depression, a side effect of Alpha GPC, Alpha GPC Dosage, Alternatives of Alpha GPC, interaction with Alpha GPC and finally with some FAQs regarding the topic.
Alpha GPC is used for depression because
- It helps in improving our memory.
- Combats fatigues and increase our stamina
- Mood Regulation and pleasure feeling
- Enhance our cognitive functioning.
- Boost our motivation
- Restore neurochemical balance
- Improves synaptic signalling and neuronal excitability
- Increase the production of both dopamine and acetylcholine.
- Improve mental and physical performance.
- Stimulate Groeth Hormone
Alpha GPC is a supplement that is taken to increase the level of acetylcholine in the brain. The full name is Alpha-Glycerophosphocholine. It is a cholinergic compound which has cognition promoting properties. Choline is present in the supplement which is also present in food. The supplement activates our cholinergic system which is preferred for cognitive aspects such as thinking, memory recall etc.
Depression is a mood disorder where the individual experience prolonged sadness, lethargic,
worthiness, helpless and melancholic that interferes or hampers their daily functioning. According to the World Health Organisation (2020), it is one of the most common mental disorder which affects 264 million people from different age group.
Unlike the mood swings which we experience normally, depression when it lasts long, it is a serious health condition, in the worst case, might result in suicide as well. The noting symptom is the profound sadness and the inability to experience pleasure, anhedonia. There are also physical symptoms associated; few of them are difficulty in the sleep cycle, psychomotor retardation, loss of appetite and tiredness.
Sign and Symptoms of Depression according to DSM5
According to the guidelines set in DSM 5, the following symptoms should be present in an individual for same 2 week period along with one symptom of either two: depressed mood and loss of interest, anhedonia.
- Depressed mood for most days
- Diminished interest in pleasurable activities
- Significant weight loss
- Disruption in appetite
- Insomnia and Hypersomnia
- Psychomotor Agitation
- Loss of energy and fatigue
- Diminished ability to think
- Recurrent thoughts on death and suicide
- Excessive guilt
- Impairment in the social, professional and important area of life.
Other names for Alpha-GPC
Alpha GPC is known by different names such, Alpha-Glyceryl Phosphoryl Choline, Alpha-Glyceryl Phosphatidylcholine, Choline alphoscerate, Glycérophosphorylcholine, GPC, GroPCho, L-alpha-glycerylphosphorylcholine, Alpha-glycerylphosphorylcholine, L–A-Glyceryl Phosphorylcholine.
Availability of Alpha-GPC
It is available in two forms, first one is oral via mouth while the other one is via a shot.
Working of Alpha GPC
Alpha GPC works by increasing Acetylcholine in our brain. It is the neurotransmitter that is responsible for our memory and learning. The supplement also works by delivering choline in the brain that increases acetylcholine production.
Acetylcholine is an important chemical for
- Linguistic skill
- Reasoning and logic
- Coordination and mobility
However, the concentration of this chemical declines with age naturally. Thus, to make sure that the cognitive functions are performing, one needs to keep the level of it high.
It is the essential ingredient in Alpha GPC and often found naturally in our body.
It is essential and needed for overall body functioning and health. Adding onto that, it is also important for our mental as well as physical performance.
While it is naturally present in our body, some of the choline-rich food are:
- Dairy products
Since the amount of Cholin present in ourself as well as food sources are usually low, Alpha GPC supplements are taken.
Alpha GPC and Depression
- Alpha GPC functions like Dopaminergic where it elevates our mood and pleasure sensation.
- It also stimulates the production of Growth Hormone that also improves our mood.
- Researches have shown that Alpha GPC supplements increase the level of both dopamine and Acetylcholine in the frontal cortex which subsequently improves our memory and learning.
- Increase in Acetylene as a result of supplement changes the neuronal network in the brain and thus modifies our inherent repose to both internal and external inputs.
- Researchers have found through researches that Alpha GPC change our cognition as well as increase TSH hormone associated with depression and thyroid.
Uses/ Benefits of Alpha GPC
Alpha GPC with its choline content is found to be effective in treating different illness as well as behavioural modifications.
Some of the uses of supplements are:
It supports our memory:
It boosts our memory by releasing acetylcholine and also slow down the process of memory loss. Choline helps in our ability to grasp new idea and concept.
Combat fatigue and tiredness
The supplement fight with fatigue by increasing our stamina. Our mood and stamina are highly correlated with increase acetylcholine level in the brain and body.
It has a positive effect on our pleasure sensation, incentive and mood. A study has proved that Alpha GPC has a positive effect or response to our dopamine production. Thus, it also helps in treating Parkinson disease caused by the low level of dopamine.
Increase in stamina is related to improved performance in Athletic. The increased level of GHG as a result of Alpha GPC supplement improves our lower body force production. Because of it’s improved physical performance, alpha supplement is taken by fitness enthusiasts to improve their performance and is a popular pre-workout supplement.
Treating Alzheimer diseases and Stroke
Alpha GPC is used to treat Alzheimer where it improves the thinking skill of individual while it also results in better recovery of stroke.
Alpha GPC is Neuroprotective
It was shown and found through researches that Alpha GPC improves the overall cognition of an individual by also preventing cognitive degeneration. It has a significant positive effect on cognition.
The benefit of Alpha GPC for studying
It is a useful study aid for cognitive enhancement as well as attention, memory and mental performance.
Side Effect of Alpha GPC
Despite the use of Alpha GPC in the treatment of different disorders as well as for bodily process and functioning, there are numerous side effects associated with it. It is not safe to use for long term.
- Skin rashes
- Gastrointestinal issues
- Low Mood
- Low Blood Pressure
Dosage of Alpha GPC
- The appropriate use of Alpha GPC is determined by different factors such as age, health, and other health condition. Choline made up 40% of the Alpha-GPC.
- The standard dossage is 300-600mg.
- For most of the patient, the starting dose recommended by doctors is as low as 300 mg daily and then gradually working up to 600mg.
- For the treatment of cognitive decline, the standard dosage was 1200mg daily taken through three bits of 400mg.
Interaction with Alpha GPC
Scopolamine is a drug that interferes with the working of Alpha GPC because the latter increases the production of acetylcholine while Scopolamine blocks the production of the same.
Alpha GPC Alternatives
To receive a similar or equivalent benefit like Alpha GPC, certain medications can be taken. Some of those are:
It is the salt form of choline which is stable and metabolizes by the body. Both plant and animal organs contain choline bitartrate. It is anti-inflammatory thus, beneficial for our heart health.
It is a combination of choline and citrate where citrate activates the choline. It works by replenishing the body stores of choline and enhanced our energy and endurance.
It boosts our brainpower and enhance performance with a faster metabolism and build the muscle
Other than the mentioned ones, there are vitamin-B, Ginkgo Biloba, Ashwagandha that produces or result in similar benefit like Alpha GPC.
Side Note: I have tried and tested various products and services to help with my anxiety and depression. See my top recommendations here, as well as a full list of all products and services our team has tested for various mental health conditions and general wellness.
What we recommend for Depression
If you are suffering from depression then ongoing professional counselling could be your ideal first point of call. Counselling will utilize theories such as Cognitive behavioural therapy which will help you live a more fulfilling life.
FAQs: Alpha GPC Depression
What is Alpha GPC good for?
It improves dementia, memory impairment, combat fatigue and mood regulation. On top of that, it is considered safe, available online and legal.
How much Alpha GPC should you take?
Ideally, 400-1200mg of Alpha GPC per day is optimal. One can always start with a low dose and increase gradually, however, should never overdose, doing which will cause tremendous and severe side effect.
How much choline is in Alpha GPC?
Choline makes up 40% of Alpha GPC which is similar to 1000mg of Alpha GPC containing 400mg of choline.
Is Alpha GPC a drug?
No, it is a supplement that is taken to improve our memory and cognitive functioning.
When to take Alpha GPC?
It can be taken at any time of the day, however, to get rid of the side effect, it is usually avoided before bed.
Can You Take Alpha GPC Every Day?
Yes, it is safe to take every day and people can tolerate it.
What is Alpha GPC good for?
The drug is administered to release acetylcholine and thus facilitate in our learning process as well as memory.
And for the athlete, the supplement prevents the reduction of choline while exercising, thus raise the endurance towards performance and increase growth hormone secretion.
Does Alpha GPC really work?
Yes, it is effective in increasing our body force production after days of medication. Sports coaches also add it to the diet of an athlete to increase their performance and strengthen the muscle.
Can you take Alpha GPC in empty stomach?
Yes, it is best absorbed when in empty stomach, however, in case of a sensitive stomach, it is advisable to take it with little food.
Is Alpha GPC natural?
Yes, it is a natural choline substance in the brain however, some supplements can be taken as well.
Does Alpha GPC increase dopamine?
Yes, it is proved through research that it increases the level of dopamine as well as acetylcholine while reducing TSH level.
Can too much choline be harmful?
Yes, excess choline will result in body odour, heavy sweating, vomiting, low blood pressure, salivation, etc.
How long does it take for choline to work?
Ideally, within an hour, the choline level in blood plasma is increased and the brain concentration reaches the apex in two hours.
Does choline cause anxiety?
No, Choline is negatively related to anxiety symptoms.
What does Alpha GPC feel like?
It is safe and tolerates in most of the individual, however, there are reported cases where individual feel headache, nausea and gets diahereea.
In this writeup, “ Alpha GPC Depression” was discussed, glimpse about depression and it’s a symptom, other names of GPCcholine, Alpha GPC and Depression, a side effect of Alpha GPC, Alpha GPC Dosage, Alternatives of Alpha GPC, interaction with Alpha GPC and finally with some FAQs regarding the topic.
Some sites for in-depth information
Bjelland, I. (2009, 08 5). Choline in anxiety and depression: the Hordaland Health Study. PubMed.gov. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19656836/
Gostincar, G. (2020, 8 1). Alpha GPC Review: 4 Amazing Benefits, Side Effects & More. your inception. https://www.yourinception.com/alpha-gpc/
Linder, L. (2018, 06). Alpha-GPC – An Overview. Klaire Lass. https://klaire.com/researchandscience/hcp-articles/alpha-gpc-an-overview/
Marcus, L., & Soileau, J. (2017). Evaluation of the effects of two doses of alpha glycerylphosphorylcholine on physical and psychomotor performance. Journal of the international society of sports and Nutrition, 14(39).
Onnit Research Team. (2020, 09 22). Alpha GPC Benefits, Uses, and Side Effects. Academy. Onnit Academy
Parker, A. G., Byars, A., & Purpura, M. (2015). The effects of alpha-glycerylphosphorylcholine, caffeine or placebo on markers of mood, cognitive function, power, speed, and agility. Journal of International Society of Sports Nutrition, 12, 1550-2783.