The 4 Best Supplements For Stress And Anxiety

Stress and anxiety are likely two things every human being deals with daily. Between work, kids, getting your exercise in, the COVID-19 pandemic, and the million other things we have going on…well, I will just bet a lot of hair tearing out is occurring from stress and anxiety.

There are a ton of ways to naturally relieve stress like exercise, meditation, and perhaps doing the mattress mambo with your significant other but sometimes even those things may not be enough to keep your mind from racing or freaking out.

If the natural stress relievers are not working for you it may be time to consider some scientifically validated supplements that can help you obtain the inner peace of a Buddhist monk.

In this article we will take an in-depth look at some of these supplements, tell you what they are, how they work, how much to take, and if there are any side effects.

Top natural supplements for stress and anxiety

  1. Lemon Balm Extract
  2. L-Theanine
  3. 5-HTP
  4. Hops Flower Extract

Daily dosage recommendations:

  1. Lemon Balm Extract: 100-300mg
  2. L-Theanine: 200mg
  3. 5-HTP: 50-500mg
  4. Hops Flower Extract: 100-500mg

All these ingredients and dosages can be found in BrickHouse Nutrition’s Dreamzzz…yeah, yeah, yeah…. I know it’s a shameless plug, but we’ve used all these ingredients because they work to help you calm the f#ck down…especially before bed.

Let’s take a more in-depth look at each ingredient and tell you exactly how it works to reduce stress and anxiety.

Lemon Balm Extract

A group of lemons

What is it?/What are the benefits?

Lemon Balm is an herb used to promote calmness. It is highly effective at reducing stress and anxiety.

Other benefits include:

  • Regulates mood
  • Plays a crucial role in sleep patterns.

How much should I take?

On the low end, an efficacious dose of lemon balm extract is 100 milligrams, but higher doses may be needed to improve sleep quality.

One study suggests that 1200 milligrams gives three times as much benefit compared to 300 milligrams.

What does the research show?

A 2004 study conducted by Kennedy et al. showed subjects who ingested 600mg of Lemon Balm were able to reduce their stress levels and improve calmness during a lab-controlled stress test.

Side effects

Currently, there is no research demonstrating that the natural sleep aid Lemon Balm has any negative side effects.


What is it?/What are the benefits?

Theanine is an amino acid that isn’t critical for normal metabolic processes, meaning you’d live fine without it.

Benefits include:

  • Reduces anxiety
  • Increases attention
  • Enhances mental performance
  • Lowers stress levels
  • Lowers cortisol
  • Relaxes the mind without drowsiness

How much should I take?

L-Theanine should be dosed at 100-200mg and is best consumed 30-60 minutes before bed or in anticipation of a stressful situation.

What does the research show?

A 2004 study conducted by Lu et al. discovered that subjects who consumed 200mg of L-Theanine before an anxiety test experienced less stress compared to the placebo group.

Side effects

Currently, there is no research demonstrating that L-Theanine has any negative side effects.


A man meditating on a river bed in a valley

What is it?/What are the benefits?

5-HTP is a byproduct of L-Tryptophan (the amino acid that can make you sleepy) that is turned into serotonin in your brain.

Benefits include:

  • Improves sleep
  • Combats night terrors
  • May help with depression
  • Reduces stress and anxiety

How much should I take?

The dosage used in most studies to provide the benefits listed above is 50-500mg daily. This dose can either be taken once or divided into two doses throughout the day.

What does the research show?

A 2010 study conducted by Emanuele et al. took 15 healthy subjects (11 females and 4 males) who recently experienced a breakup and were stressed out of their mind about it.

Researchers had the subjects take 60mg of 5-HTP daily for 6 weeks and were evaluated at baseline, at 3 weeks, and at the end of the 6-week supplemental period.

Using questionnaires and measuring serotonin levels, they found significant improvements in stress scores compared to baseline and increased platelet serotonin values.

Side effects

Overall, 5-HTP has very few side effects in a small percentage of the population. These side effects can include:

  • Nausea
  • Muscle tenderness
  • Vomiting

Hops Flower Extract

What is it?/What are the benefits?

Hops are the dried, flowering part of the hop plant. The compounds found in hops that help with stress/anxiety are sesquiterpenoids, diterpenoids, and triterpenoids, phytoestrogens, and the flavonoid xanthohumol.

Benefits include:

  • Combats insomnia
  • Improves sleep quality and quantity
  • Induces sedation
  • Reduces muscle tension
  • Promotes relaxation
  • Decreases anxiety
  • May decrease pain and inflammation

How much should I take?

The correct dosage of hops flower extract is 100-300mg at a 5:1 ratio of ethanolic extract.

What does the research show?

A 2017 study conducted by Kyrou et al. discovered that subjects who supplemented daily with hops for 4 weeks significantly decreased anxiety, depression, and stress scores compared to placebo.

Side effects

No negative side effects as indicated by the available research.

Where Can I Find All These Stress Reducing Compounds?






Introducing DreamZzz By BrickHouse Nutrition

BrickHouse DreamZzz contains all the ingredients listed above in addition to 9 other stress reducing compounds that can help you get a good nights sleep. If anxiety has you tossing and turning all night long, give DreamZzz a try and get ready to sleep like a brick!



  • Cases, J., Ibarra, A., Feuillere, N., Roller, M., & Sukkar, S. G. (2011). Pilot trial of Melissa officinalis L. leaf extract in the treatment of volunteers suffering from mild-to-moderate anxiety disorders and sleep disturbances. Mediterranean journal of nutrition and metabolism, 4(3), 211-218.
  • Kennedy, D. O., Little, W., & Scholey, A. B. (2004). Attenuation of laboratory-induced stress in humans after acute administration of Melissa officinalis (Lemon Balm). Psychosomatic medicine, 66(4), 607-613.
  • Kennedy, D. O., Scholey, A. B., Tildesley, N. T. J., Perry, E. K., & Wesnes, K. A. (2002). Modulation of mood and cognitive performance following acute administration of Melissa officinalis (lemon balm). Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior, 72(4), 953-964.
  • Borzelleca, J.F.; Peters, D.; Hall, W. A 13-week dietary toxicity and toxicokinetic study with l-theanine in rats. Food Chem. Toxicol. 2006, 44, 1158–1166.
  • Camfield DA, Stough C, Farrimond J, Scholey AB. Acute effects of tea constituents L-theanine, caffeine, and epigallocatechin gallate on cognitive function and mood: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Nutr Rev. 2014;72(8):507-522.
  • Department of Experimental Psychology, University of Bristol, 12A Priory Road, Bristol BS8 1TU, UK
  • Dodd FL, Kennedy DO, Riby LM, Haskell-Ramsay CF. A double-blind, placebo-controlled study evaluating the effects of caffeine and L-theanine both alone and in combination on cerebral blood flow, cognition, and mood. Psychopharmacology. 2015;232(14):2563-2576.
  • Einöther SJ, Martens VE, Rycroft JA, De Bruin EA. L-theanine and caffeine improve task switching but not intersensory attention or subjective alertness. Appetite 2010;54(2):406-9.
  • L-Theanine: Scientific review on benefits, anxiety, dosage, side effects. 2019, September 9.
  • Giesbrecht, T., Rycroft, J. A., Rowson, M. J., and De Bruin, E. A. The combination of L-theanine and caffeine improves cognitive performance and increases subjective alertness. Nutr Neurosci. 2010;13(6):283-290.
  • Haskell, C. F., Kennedy, D. O., Milne, A. L., Wesnes, K. A., and Scholey, A. B. The effects of L-theanine, caffeine and their combination on cognition and mood. Biol.Psychol. 2008;77(2):113-122.
  • Higashiyama, A.; Htay, H.H.; Ozeki, M.; Juneja, L.R.; Kapoor, M.P. Effects of l-theanine on attention and reaction time response. J. Func. Foods 2011, 3, 171–178.
  • Jang, H.S.; Jung, J.Y.; Jang, I.S.; Jang, K.H.; Kim, S.H.; Ha, J.H.; Suk, K.; Lee, M.G. l-Theanine partially counteracts caffeine-induced sleep disturbances in rats. Pharmacol. Biochem. Behav. 2012, 101, 217–221.
  • Juneja et al. Trends in Food Science & Tech. 1999;10;199-204
  • Kakuda, T., Nozawa, A., Sugimoto, A., and Niino, H. Inhibition by theanine of binding of [3H]AMPA, [3H]kainate, and [3H]MDL 105,519 to glutamate receptors. Biosci.Biotechnol.Biochem. 2002;66(12):2683-2686.
  • Kardashev A, Ratner Y, Ritsner MS.Add-on pregnenolone with L-theanine to antipsychotic therapy relieves negative and anxiety symptoms of schizophrenia: an 8-week, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Clin Schizophr Relat Psychoses. 2018;12(1):31-41.
  • Kimura, K., Ozeki, M., Juneja, L. R., and Ohira, H. L-Theanine reduces psychological and physiological stress responses. Biol Psychol. 2007;74(1):39-45.
  • Lu K, Gray MA, Oliver C, et al. The acute effects of L-theanine in comparison with alprazolam on anticipatory anxiety in humans. Hum Psychopharmacol 2004;19:457-65.
  • Matsumoto, K., Yamada, H., Takuma, N., Niino, H., and Sagesaka, Y. M. Effects of green tea catechins and theanine on preventing influenza infection among healthcare workers: a randomized controlled trial. BMC.Complement Altern.Med. 2011;11:15.
  • Rogers, P. J., Smith, J. E., Heatherley, S. V., and Pleydell-Pearce, C. W. Time for tea: mood, blood pressure and cognitive performance effects of caffeine and theanine administered alone and together. Psychopharmacology (Berl) 2008;195(4):569-577.
  • Vuong, Q.V.; Bowyer, M.C.; Roach, P.D. l-Theanine: Properties, synthesis, and isolation from tea. J. Sci. Food Agric. 2011, 91, 1931–1939.
  • White et al. Anti-Stress, Behavioural and Magnetoencephalography Effects of an l-Theanine-Based Nutrient Drink: A Randomised, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Crossover Trial. 2016 Jan; 8(1): 53.
  • Williams J, Kellett J, Roach PD, et al. L-theanine as a functional food additive: its role in disease prevention and health promotion. Beverages 2016;2(2):13.
  • .
  • Shell, W., Bullias, D., Charuvastra, E., May, L. A., & Silver, D. S. (2010). A randomized, placebo-controlled trial of an amino acid preparation on timing and quality of sleep. American journal of therapeutics, 17(2), 133-139.
  • Guilleminault, C., Palombini, L., Pelayo, R., & Chervin, R. D. (2003). Sleepwalking and sleep terrors in prepubertal children: what triggers them? Pediatrics, 111(1), e17-e25.
  • Emanuele, E., Bertona, M., Minoretti, P., & Geroldi, D. (2010). An open-label trial of L-5-hydroxytryptophan in subjects with romantic stress. Neuroendocrinology Letters, 31(5), 663.
  • Cangiano, C., Laviano, A., Del Ben, M., Preziosa, I., Angelico, F., Cascino, A., & Rossi-Fanelli, F. (1998). Effects of oral 5-hydroxy-tryptophan on energy intake and macronutrient selection in non-insulin dependent diabetic patients. International journal of obesity, 22(7), 648-654.
  • Kyrou, I., Christou, A., Panagiotakos, D., Stefanaki, C., Skenderi, K., Katsana, K., & Tsigos, C. (2017). Effects of a hops (Humulus lupulus L.) dry extract supplement on self-reported depression, anxiety, and stress levels in apparently healthy young adults: a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind, crossover pilot study. Hormones, 16(2), 171-180.
  • Franco, L., Sánchez, C., Bravo, R., Rodríguez, A. B., Barriga, C., Romero, E., & Cubero, J. (2012). The sedative effect of non-alcoholic beer in healthy female nurses. PloS one, 7(7), e37290.
  • Schiller, H., Forster, A., Vonhoff, C., Hegger, M., Biller, A., & Winterhoff, H. (2006). Sedating effects of Humulus lupulus L. extracts. Phytomedicine, 13(8), 535-541.
  • Franco, L., Sánchez, C., Bravo, R., Rodriguez, A., Barriga, C., & Juánez, J. (2012). The sedative effects of hops (Humulus lupulus), a component of beer, on the activity/rest rhythm. Acta Physiologica Hungarica, 99(2), 133-139.
  • Dimpfel, W., & Suter, A. A. (2008). Sleep improving effects of a single dose administration of a valerian/hops fluid extract. A double blind, randomized, placebo-controlled sleep-EEG study in a parallel design using the electrohypnogram. Zeitschrift für Phytotherapie, 29(S 1), P06.
  • Koetter, U., Schrader, E., Käufeler, R., & Brattström, A. (2007). A randomized, double blind, placebo‐controlled, prospective clinical study to demonstrate clinical efficacy of a fixed valerian hops extract combination (Ze 91019) in patients suffering from non‐organic sleep disorder. Phytotherapy Research: An International Journal Devoted to Pharmacological and Toxicological Evaluation of Natural Product Derivatives, 21(9), 847-851.
  • Morin, C. M., Koetter, U., Bastien, C., Ware, J. C., & Wooten, V. (2005). Valerian-hops combination and diphenhydramine for treating insomnia: a randomized placebo-controlled clinical trial. Sleep, 28(11), 1465-1471.
  • Lukaczer, D., Darland, G., Tripp, M., Liska, D. A., Lerman, R. H., Schiltz, B., & Bland, J. S. (2005). A Pilot trial evaluating meta050, a proprietary combination of reduced iso‐alpha acids, rosemary extract and oleanolic acid in patients with arthritis and fibromyalgia. Phytotherapy Research: An International Journal Devoted to Pharmacological and Toxicological Evaluation of Natural Product Derivatives, 19(10), 864-869.
  • Olsovska, J., Bostikova, V., Dusek, M., Jandovska, V., Bogdanova, K., Cermak, P., ... & Kolar, M. (2016). Humulus lupulus L.(hops)–a valuable source of compounds with bioactive effects for future therapies. Mil Med Sci Lett (Voj Zdrav Listy), 85(1), 19-30.
  • Schiller, H., Forster, A., Vonhoff, C., Hegger, M., Biller, A., & Winterhoff, H. (2006). Sedating effects of Humulus lupulus L. extracts. Phytomedicine, 13(8), 535-541.