The Little-Known Sleep-Enhancing Molecule Most People Don’t Understand: Truth About GABA & Sleep Hacking With Dr. Scott Sherr.

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Do you find yourself battling with anxiety that grips your chest or insomnia that keeps you tossing and turning through the night? If so, this episode equips you with actionable strategies that lead toward a calmer, more revitalized you.

Dive into the depths of neurotransmitter science with Dr. Scott Sherr as he unravels the mysteries of GABA modulation and helps you discover how rebalancing GABA levels can calm the storms of anxiety, pave the way for restful sleep, and unlock a path to overall well-being. 

Dr. Scott Sherr is a Board Certified Internal Medicine Physician certified to practice Health Optimization Medicine (HOMe) and a specialist in hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT). He is the founder of HOMe-SF, the first HOMe clinic in the United States, and the Chief Operating Officer of Health Optimization Medicine and Practice (HOMe/HOPe)–USA, a nonprofit education company training doctors and healthcare practitioners in detecting and correcting the root causes of health, not just disease.

Additionally, Dr. Scott is also the COO of Smarter Not Harder (SNH), the for-profit arm of HOMe/HOPe. SNH is the company behind Troscriptions, a line of precision-dosed buccal troches that address the bottlenecks along the path to optimal health. They have five products on the market, now including Blue Cannatine, Just Blue, Tro+ Blue, Tro Calm, and Tro Zzz.

As discussed on this show, Tro Zzz and Tro Calm are excellent solutions for improving sleep. Tro Zzz contains honokiol from magnolia bark, offering anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, neuroprotective, and anticancer benefits. It also includes agarin from the amanita mushroom for sustained GABA support (without psychedelic effects), along with CBD, CBN, and adenosine to enhance sleep quality. Tro Calm, on the other hand, is designed for daytime anxiety and stress relief, containing kava, CBD, CBG, and nicotinell GABA. If you struggle with sleepless nights or waking up too early in the morning, I've found that combining half a square of Tro Zzz and half a square of Tro Calm can effectively guide you back to restful sleep.

Aside from his work at Troscriptions, Dr. Scott is also the co-founder of OneBase Health, an innovative HBOT ecosystem leveraging synergistic technologies to accelerate results. His clinical practice includes HOMe as its foundation, along with an integrative approach to hyperbaric oxygen therapy. This approach encompasses cutting-edge and dynamic HBOT protocols, comprehensive laboratory testing (using the HOMe framework), targeted supplementation, personal practices, synergistic technologies (new and ancient), and more.

Prepare to embark on a fascinating journey into the intricate world of GABA. Join me and Dr. Scott as we unravel the profound impact of this neurotransmitter on anxiety, sleep, and your overall well-being. This enlightening discussion is brimming with practical insights to help you optimize your GABA levels and elevate your quality of life.

Oh, and if you haven't already delved into Dr. Scott's captivating article on my website, you're in for a treat. You can check that out here:

How To Biohack A Hyperbaric Experience – A Physician Spills His Insider Secrets On How To Use HBOT Properly To Accelerate & Optimize Healing, Performance, and Recovery.

During this discussion, you'll discover:  

-Who is Dr. Scott Sherr?…05:19

-What is GABA?…08:47

  • GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) neurotransmitter
    • Calms down the firing of your neurons
    • GABA is always being balanced by an excitatory neurotransmitter called glutamate
    • Glutamate and GABA make up about 80% of your brain's neurotransmission
    • GABA is made from glutamate
  • GABA deficiency can cause:
    • Anxiety, fear, depression, migraines, short temper, phobias, impulsiveness, disorganization, addictions, and even schizophrenia and OCD
    • IBS, diarrhea, hypertension, tinnitus, chronic pain, allergies, frequent urination, flushing, bloating, sweating, salt cravings, and muscle tension
  • Is there an efficient test for GABA?
    • Glutamine can be measured in urine and plasma
  • Dutch Complete
  • Glutamine is an amino acid that can be converted to glutamate
  • Glutamine is also the main fuel of enterocytes — specialized cells lining the inner surface of the small intestine that are responsible for absorbing nutrients, electrolytes, and water from the digested food passing through the intestines into the bloodstream 

-What are the two GABA receptors in the brain?…14:50

  • GABA receptors 
    • GABAA — a ligand-gated ion channel/inotropic receptor
    • GABAB — a G-couple protein receptor
  • Caffeine is a well-known desensitizer of the GABA receptor
  • Besides caffeine, all stimulants reduce the sensitivity of the GABA receptor
  • L-theanine enhances GABA, but in excessively high doses, it may block the GABA receptor
  • Opioids and pain medications bind to GABA receptors themselves
  • THC will inhibit GABA release
  • Alcohol binds very tightly to the GABA receptors and decreases the number of receptors you have available
  • Anxiety and sleeping drugs do the same

-What are the effects of alcohol, CBD, and THC on sleep?…19:09

-Can you have too much GABA?…24:25

-What is the Amanita muscaria mushroom?…26:47

  • Amanita muscaria mushroom
    • Ibotenic acid — a neurotoxin that causes a psychedelic effect
    • Agarin is the other compound of this mushroom
      • It binds to the GABA receptor, just like GABA, and its half-life is 6 hours
      • A fantastic compound for sleep
  • The Santa Claus mythology
  • Santa Sold Shrooms by Tero Isokauppila
  • Scott’s company is the only one using it in a product for sleep
  • Tro Zzz — created to be a comprehensive sleep solution (use code BEN to save 10%)
    • Has agarin and honokiol
  • It is a legal mushroom in every state in the United States except for Louisiana
  • Four Sigmatic
  • Kava is a natural plant and a positive allosteric modulator of the GABA receptor
  • Trukava (use code BEN10 to save 10%)
  • Magnolia bark or honokiol
    • Works at the benzodiazepine site of the GABA receptor
    • Doesn't have the same tolerance, withdrawal, or dependence issues

-Are GABAA receptors responsible for sleep and anxiety?…30:59

-What is the difference between Tro Zzz and Tro Calm products?…35:54

  • Tro Calm (use code BEN to save 10%)
  • Tro Calm is created for anxiousness and stress reduction
    • Has kava, CBD, CBG, and Nicotinell GABA (a vitamin B3 attached to a GABA molecule)
      • Calms your thoughts in anxiety and depression
      • Does not make you feel sleepy or tired
  • Troches are dissolvable lozenges that go between your upper cheek and gum
  • The reason for taking it between the upper cheek and gum — start feeling the effect after 15 to 30 minutes 
  • Tro Zzz is created to be a comprehensive sleep solution (use code BEN to save 10%)
    • It has honokiol, agarin, CBD, CBN, adenosine
    • Adenosine unbinds from the caffeine
    • Cordyceps mushroom and cordycepin
  • Tro Zzz optimizes sleep architecture in a very holistic way — increases slow-wave sleep 
    • Also 5mg of melatonin and 50mg of 5-HTP
  • The benefits of taking melatonin
  • Kion Sleep

-Is there any interplay between ketamine and GABA?…48:41

  • Pharmacists hate ketamine because it's a “dirty drug”
    • Affects a lot of receptors, including dopamine, norepinephrine, and GABA
  • When there's more glutamate around, you're going to make more GABA
  • Vitamin B6 and magnesium convert glutamate to GABA
  • The use of ketamine depletes GABA and other transmitters

-What are the habits and technologies that support healthy GABA production?…54:12

  • Stress significantly depletes GABA
  • Meditation, yoga, and breathwork increase GABA production
  • Exercise increases the balance between your glutamate and your GABA production
  • Glutamine-rich foods
    • Fermented foods, steak, cheese
  • Glutamate-containing foods
    • Seafood, caviar, seaweed, dried cod
    • Mushrooms, spinach
  • Glutamate-containing foods tend to give headaches when taken in large amounts

-What is the influence of genetics on GABA?…56:54

  • Dr. Eric Braverman's genetic predisposition test
  • Nootopia Brain Performance Optimization
  • Alcoholics in the family may be a sign of a genetic predisposition to having GABA deficiency
    • Probably due to a lack of the ability to methylate B vitamins
    • Ability to sustain nutrition to optimize their glutamate and GABA levels
  • Optimizing vitamins, minerals, and nutrients may reduce drinking
  • Actual inherited disorders of the GABA receptor are very rare

-What are Scott’s personal sleep hacks?…59:02

-And much more…

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Click here for the full written transcript of this podcast episode.

Resources from this episode:

Dr. Scott Sherr:

– Podcasts:

– Books:

– Other Resources:

Episode Sponsors:

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Do you have questions, thoughts, or feedback for Scott Sherr or me? Leave your comments below and one of us will reply!

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5 thoughts on “The Little-Known Sleep-Enhancing Molecule Most People Don’t Understand: Truth About GABA & Sleep Hacking With Dr. Scott Sherr.

  1. Bob says:

    Disappointing that the sleep product has melatonin. Even 1 mg of melatonin for me creates restless leg syndrome.

  2. drew says:

    I tried to purchase, BEN didn’t work. Maybe they haven’t arranged the code yet?

    1. drew says:

      ahhh, they have a sale going so the stuff is already discounted right now

  3. Don Bauer says:

    Do you think feel free or kratom products could cause a constant state of sympathetic overdrive depending on epigenetic?

    1. Andy says:

      I can’t comment directly on the constant state but until Ben gets around to answering questions here — the functional med doc I used to see always recommended using only full spectrum kratom powders (never the extracts) and with both kratom and kava – never to use it more than 4 times per week.

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