Is ZMA good for anxiety?

This post answers: Is ZMA good for anxiety? What is ZMA? What are the other benefits of ZMA? What are the other side effects of ZMA? What are the other medications for anxiety? What are the therapy options for anxiety? What is Anxiety? What are the signs and symptoms of anxiety? What are the causes of anxiety?

Is ZMA good for anxiety?

According to the journal of nutrients published in the UK the magnesium component that is present in ZMA helps to lower the symptoms of anxiety. 

Another study indicated that about 15% of the general population who suffer from anxiety shows some association with the magnesium component when it comes to subjective anxiety making the magnesium supplement reduce anxiety symptoms. 

These findings indicate that a ZMA can help to reduce the symptoms of anxiety and help the individual manage their mental well-being.

Apart from reducing the symptoms of anxiety ZMA can also help to elevate an individual’s mood. Studies indicate that individuals who had lower magnesium intake were at a higher risk of developing depression

What is ZMA?

ZMA stands for zinc magnesium aspartate which contains ingredients such as magnesium, zinc, and vitamin B6. It is used to improve muscle strength and growth and also helps athletes with endurance recovery and better sleep quality. It is commonly used amongst bodybuilders and fitness freaks.

The contents of ZMA are as follows:

  • Zinc monomethionine: 30 mg — 270% of the Reference Daily Intake (RDI)

Zinc is considered to be essential for many enzymes that are necessary for digestion, immunity, metabolism, and other important functions of an individual.

  • Magnesium aspartate: 450 mg — 110% of the RDI

Magnesium is responsible for increased energy and better nerve and muscle functioning.

  • Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine): 10–11 mg — 650% of the RDI

Vitamin B6 is required for the making of important new transmitters and nutrient metabolism.

What are the other benefits of ZMA?

Some other benefits of taking ZMA are:

It helps in boosting immunity

ZMA can play an essential role in improving an individual’s immunity due to the presence of essential elements such as zinc which is responsible for making immune cells, magnesium which can play a great role in an individual’s heart health and keeping away chronic diseases like cancer and also vitamin B6 which can be related to the immunity of an individual.

Helps to control blood sugar levels

The presence of magnesium and zinc in ZMA can also be beneficial for those having a history of diabetes to control their blood sugar levels. Studies indicate that individuals with diabetes who took zinc supplements reflected lower levels of blood sugar during fasting and post-meal blood sugar levels.

Helps in improving sleep quality

Research indicates that the presence of magnesium and zinc can also help in improving individual sleep quality by activating their parasympathetic nervous system and producing a calming effect in individuals.

What are the other side effects of ZMA?

There are no significant side effects of ZMA however when these are taken in very high amounts it might lead to side effects such as:

  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Loss of appetite
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Stomach cramps.

Individuals who consider taking ZMA must consult their doctors before doing so as it might react with a variety of medications. Also, women who are breastfeeding or are pregnant must consult their respective health care professionals.

What are the other medications for anxiety?

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs)

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are a type of antidepressant that medical health practitioners can prescribe to individuals with anxiety.

Doctors can also prescribe SSRIs to individuals with obsessive-compulsive disorder. Many doctors consider selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors to be the first-line drug treatment for anxiety-related disorders.

SSRI’s work for anxiety by stopping those nerve cells in the brain that reabsorb serotonin which plays a role in mood regulation.

SSRIs begin to show their effect within six weeks however individuals must understand that these medicines do not work for every person in a similar manner that is it might show effects for some while it might not for others.

Individuals can take SSRIs for up to 12 months to treat their anxiety issues and then gradually decrease their dosage with the help of the doctor’s advice.

SSRIs are not habit-forming and do not lead to dependence after long-term use.

Tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs)

Tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs) are antidepressant drugs that can be prescribed to individuals for their anxiety. Doctors can also prescribe these for people suffering from depression.

Tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs) might work for some individuals on whom other medications do not work to provide them relief with their anxiety symptoms.

Individuals must consult their mental health practitioners before taking these as many practitioners prefer SSRIs instead of tricyclic antidepressants because of the side effects that they cause.


Benzodiazepines are a type of sedative drug that helps to reduce the physical symptoms of anxiety such as tensed muscles. They also help in bringing about a sense of relaxation and these are quick medicines that bring relief within a few minutes.

Though Benzodiazepines are effective within the short run doctors rarely prescribe these to individuals or any other individuals because they become less effective over time and can be addictive.

Unlike other antidepressants, benzodiazepines might also cause withdrawal symptoms which include depression, sleep problems, sweating, and seizures.

 What are the therapy options for anxiety?

Cognitive-behavioural therapy

Cognitive-behavioural therapy helps an individual to control their anxiety by using strategies like relaxation and breathing. It works on the principles of replacing negative thoughts with positive ones.

Exposure therapy

Exposure therapy is a kind of therapy in which an individual is exposed to a particular stimulus that they usually fear or are anxious about in a graded order.

As and when the individual gets comfortable with the situation or stimulus introduced or exposed to them with each session, individuals get more comfortable with a real-life situation that might have otherwise been a source for triggering anxiety.

Group therapy


It is based on the principle that when an individual interacts with other people who are suffering from the same fears they might not feel left alone or isolated. Group therapy usually involves a group of individuals who are experiencing similar symptoms and problems.


Anxiety can also be treated with the help of medication prescribed by a health care professional.

Though medication alone cannot help in reducing persistent anxiety it can help in restoring a sense of control and bring temporary relief. 

Online therapy  

In cases where reaching out physically to a professional is impossible or discomforting an individual can opt to seek help through the online medium. 

In this, the therapy sessions are carried out one-to-one over a video or audio call. Some individuals also prefer interacting with the therapist through text as well due to various reasons. One of the most common is the fear of being judged by the therapist or some personal hesitation. 

Online therapy can help individuals to regulate some aspects of their anxiety that aids individuals in carrying out a stress-free life over time

What is Anxiety?

Problems and resulting stress are usually accompanied by some common emotions like confusion, feeling at the edge, a sense of helplessness, and recurrent negative thoughts which can collectively be seen as an individual experiencing what’s commonly called  Anxiety. 

Every human has their unique ways of dealing with these difficult situations and the following emotions, some try to adapt to the circumstances and find the best and most comfortable solution while others try to find an escape route for the same, in both cases the main aim is usually to get over the uncomfortable emotions of anxiety. 

What are the signs and symptoms of anxiety? 

Anxiety is characterized by a set of signs and symptoms such as:


  • Sweating
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sense of choking
  • Complaints of chest pain
  • Shaking or trembling
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Dizziness or Lightheadedness
  • Fear of losing control over oneself and their environment
  • Fear of impending doom
  • Hot or cold flashes
  • Tingling or numbness
  • Increased heart rate

These symptoms vary in severity from person to person. However, it is noted that many people experience anxiety attacks that are not significantly displayed.

What are the causes of anxiety?

Anxiety often results from accumulated stress or overwhelming feelings. Some common causes of anxiety include.

  • Increased and challenging situations and demands in day-to-day life.
  • Major changes in family dynamics such as marriage, divorce, death of a loved one.
  • Strain interpersonal relationships
  • Intrapersonal conflicts
  • Ineffective coping mechanisms
  • Comorbid conditions both physical and mental
  • Chronic health conditions
  • Genetic factors
  • Changes in the brain region
  • Overdose of caffeine
  • Prolonged use of medications
  • Significant traumatic experiences in the past or recent times
  • Comorbid mental health conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder or obsessive-compulsive disorder or any other phobias.


Due to the presence of magnesium and zinc individuals might benefit from using ZMA while experiencing anxiety. However, individuals must first consult their doctors before consuming this supplement. Many reports indicate that a combination of therapy and medication is best to work when individuals are trying to battle some mental health concerns and the same holds for anxiety as well.

Frequently asked questions: Is ZMA good for anxiety?

Is ZMA good for anxiety?

According to studies, the presence of magnesium supplements in ZMA can help to lower an individual’s anxiety and improve mood.

What are some side effects of ZMA?

Some side effects of ZMA are:

  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Stomach cramps
  • Copper deficiency

Does ZMA reduce cortisol?

Studies indicate that there is no direct effect under the ratio of cortisol in response to the ZMAs supplement.


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