The effect of L-theanine incorporated in a functional food product (mango sorbet) on physiological responses in healthy males: A pilot randomised controlled trial
Williams, J., McKune, A. J., Georgousopoulou, E. N., Kellett, J., D'Cunha, N. M., Sergi, D., Mellor, D., & Naumovski, N. (2020). The effect of L-theanine incorporated in a functional food product (mango sorbet) on physiological responses in healthy males: A pilot randomised controlled trial. Foods, 9 (3).
Consumption of L-Theanine (L-THE) has been associated with a sensation of relaxation, as well as a reduction of stress. However, these physiological responses have yet to be elucidated in humans where L-THE is compared alongside food or as a functional ingredient within the food matrix. The aim of this study was to determine the physiological responses of a single intake of a potential functional food product (mango sorbet) containing L-THE (ms-L-THE; 200 mgw/w) in comparison to a flavour and colour-matched placebo (ms). Eighteen healthy male participants were recruited in this randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. The participants were required to consume ms-L-THE or placebo and their blood pressure (BP) (systolic and diastolic), heart rate (HR), and heart rate variability (HRV) were monitored continuously over 90 minutes. Eleven males (age 27.7 ± 10.8 years) completed the study. Changes in area under the curve for systolic and diastolic blood pressure and HRV over the 90 minute observation period indicated no differences between the three conditions (all p > 0.05) or within individual groups (all p > 0.05). The values for heart rate were also not different in the placebo group (p = 0.996) and treatment group (p = 0.066), while there was a difference seen at the baseline (p = 0.003). Based on the findings of this study, L-THE incorporated in a food matrix (mango sorbet) demonstrated no reduction in BP or HR and showed no significant parasympathetic interaction as determined by HRV high-frequency band and low-frequency/high-frequency ratio. Further studies should be focussed towards the comparison of pure L-THE and incorporation within the food matrix to warrant recommendations of L-THE alongside food consumption.
L-Theanine, amino acid, green tea, bioactive, functional food, blood pressure, heart rate variability, cardiometabolic effect