Kirshner Health Solutions
dr corey kirshner.jpg

Blog

Dr. Kirshner's Health Tips

Could Your Anxiety Be Genetic?

Can (1).png

Could your anxiety be genetic?

There is a simple to challenge to find out.

There are many known factors that contribute to anxiety, but one that is rarely discussed is a genetic variant that can inhibit traditional care. You may wonder, “how can I make a change if my problem is genetic?” In fact knowing your anxiety stems from a genetic variant will empower you to possibly find a more appropriate path to feeling better.

Let me explain:

Your brain is influenced by a number of chemicals called neurotransmitters, chemicals which pass messages from one nerve cell to another.Two of the most influential neurotransmitters are Glutamate and GABA.

•    Glutamate excites the brain

•    GABA slows the brain

As you may have guessed, an imbalance between glutamate and GABA may have an adverse effect on your mental state. Too much glutamate may equal more anxiety.

But…

Glutamate turns into GABA in the brain. A number of things influence this process, including your genes. If you happen to have the gene variant that inhibits the process, you may be expressing it in the form of anxiety.

Take the Alpha-ketoglutaric acid challenge

When taken as a supplement, the body should turn Alpha-Ketoglutaric Acid(AKG) into glutamate and then GABA. If you have this genetic variant, the body can't convert glutamate into GABA, in essence temporarily creating too much glutamate and the resulting symptoms.

The test: Take 1000 to 1500 mg of Alpha-Ketoglutaric Acid. You will be symptom-free if your body successfully converts it to GABA. But if you have the genetic variant your body will have a problem completing the conversion, and you may notice excitability, nervousness, anxiety, insomnia, or gut disturbances. You might have to do this challenge for a few days to notice any changes.

What to do if the result is positive?

 If this is positive you will want to develop a strategy to increase GABA through supplementation. You can also add supplements that support GABA, such as l-theanine, l-taurine, vitamin b-6, Valerian, and lithium orotate.

What else can you do?

 •    With your prescribing doctor, you may want to readdress some of your medications. Benzodiazepines, such as Valium and Xanax, may be difficult to withdraw from because of the resistance you build up over time.

•    Avoid MSG. This is one of the largest contributing factors on raising unnatural Glutamate levels in the body and brain. This may cause what is called the Chinese food syndrome.  MSG raises glutamate and if your body can't convert it to GABA, it may lead to hyper-excitable symptoms like a racing heart rate, headaches, stomach problems, among others. By the way, MSG goes by many different names. Get educated on other names MSG goes by.

•    Exercise has also been shown to restore neurotransmitters to a healthy level.

•    Organic Acid Tests and genetic tests can zero in on a cellular and genetic level to see what influençable markers you have and to develop more powerful strategies to overcome your anxieties.

If you experience thoughts of doing harm to yourself or others, seek help from a mental health professional.

Anxiety may be expressed in many ways, and there are many causes. If there is an influenceable cause, wouldn’t you want to know? I hope this article helps.

corey kirshnerComment