Phosphatidylserine has become one of my most fave natural solutions for adrenal-related issues, and it should be yours too! I covered chronic fatigue a few posts back and covered the basics of how the adrenals could be contributing to chronic fatigue. Quick recap: constant stress wears out your adrenals and changes the output of your wake-up hormone (cortisol), which then leaves you feeling tired and out of whack. Remember, stress can be either physical or mental. So, chronic working out or chronic mental stress from work/life can wear down your adrenals and lead to suboptimal cortisol output.
How do we bring your cortisol output and adrenal function back to its normal rhythm? Phosphatidylserine.
Multiple studies show that phosphatidylserine has the potential to reduce cortisol levels, particularly when exposed to acute stress. One study shows that daily supplementation of phosphatidylserine 10 days had a significant impact on cortisol modulation in exercise-induced stress without changing any other hormones, such as growth factor. A study on chronically-stressed males showed that 400 mg of phosphatidylserine reduced blood and salivary cortisol levels when taken daily for 72 days. However, that effect was not found in "low-stressed" subjects. This same study investigated whether 200 mg of phosphatidyserine would make an impact on cortisol levels in the chronically-stressed and "low-stressed" and found no significant change. Phopshatidylserine is just more than just for balancing adrenal function, it could also support brain function as well!
Brain function & Mental health
Phosphatidylserine has been shown to have some impact on brain function. A pilot study showed that when phosphatidylserine was combined with Bacopa monerri, astaxanthin, and vitamin E in those with mild cognitive impairment, subject showed improvements in cognitive testing. However, this study was not a randomized control study and more studies with this combination need to be done. Another study investigated if phosphatidylserine had an impact on brain function when combined with DHA. What's DHA? It's a compound derived from fish oil that has been attributed to having brain-supporting effects. In this phosphatidylserine-DHA study, research found that the combination led to a significant improvement in cognitive tests in "nondemented" elderly subjects and that continued supplementation led to sustained cognitive improvements. Okay, one more study since I'm a science nerd. This one is particularly cool since this study investigated whether depression could be impacted by phosphatidylserine. This study looked at the impact of phosphatidylserine on elderly subjects who did not respond to common antidepressants and elderly patients who have responded to common antidepressants. Researchers found that after 12 weeks of supplementation with phosphatidylserine and omega-3 fatty acids, those who have responded to antidepressants in the past saw significant improvements too their depressive symptoms, but also saw normalized cortisol levels and normalized circadian rhythms. Those who did not respond to common antidepressants in the past did not see such improvements.
Studies show the benefits of phosphatidylserine on stress and adrenal function, but also with brain function and mood support. Here's a summary of all of the studies I talked about:
- Phosphatidylserine normalizes cortisol levels in exercise-induced stress. So, athletes may benefit from phosphatidylserine.
- Phosphatidylserine balances cortisol in the chronically-stressed.
- Phosphatidylserine combined with herbs and nutrients could help improve brain function in those with mild cognitive impairment.
- Phosphatidylserine combined with omegas could improve depression in those who have responded to antidepressants in the past. So, this could be an option for those who are currently on antidepressants.
Sold on how cool phosphatidylserine is? If you are tired of feeling tired all of the time, and want to finally sort yourself out with natural medicine, book your baseline naturopathic consultation with me at Jupiter. In your 90-minute baseline consultation, I gather information through comprehensive medical intake, conventional medical physical exams, and bioenergetic muscle testing to formulate the best naturopathic treatment plan that addresses the root cause with advanced functional labs, herbs, nutrients, therapeutic diets, IV vitamin drips, and/or energetic medicines.
It's time to update your health. Schedule that baseline naturopathic consultation with me at Jupiter.
- Dr. B
Carter, Jeremy, and Mike Greenwood. “Phosphatidylserine for the Athlete.” Strength and Conditioning Journal, vol. 37, no. 1, 2015, pp. 61–68., doi:10.1519/ssc.0000000000000112.
Hellhammer, Juliane, et al. “A Soy-Based Phosphatidylserine/ Phosphatidic Acid Complex (PAS) Normalizes the Stress Reactivity of Hypothalamus-Pituitary-Adrenal-Axis in Chronically Stressed Male Subjects: a Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Study.” Lipids in Health and Disease, vol. 13, no. 1, 2014, p. 121., doi:10.1186/1476-511x-13-121.
Komori, Teruhisa. “The Effects of Phosphatidylserine and Omega-3 Fatty Acid-Containing Supplement on Late Life Depression.” Mental Illness, vol. 7, no. 1, 2015, doi:10.4081/mi.2015.5647.
Starks, Michael A, et al. “The Effects of Phosphatidylserine on Endocrine Response to Moderate Intensity Exercise.” Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, vol. 5, no. 1, 2008, p. 11., doi:10.1186/1550-2783-5-11.
Zanotta, Danilo, et al. “Cognitive Effects of a Dietary Supplement Made from Extract of Bacopa Monnieri, Astaxanthin, Phosphatidylserine, and Vitamin E in Subjects with Mild Cognitive Impairment: a Noncomparative, Exploratory Clinical Study.” Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment, 2014, p. 225., doi:10.2147/ndt.s51092.
DISCLAIMER: These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. There are no financial ties to any supplement companies, pharmaceutical companies, or to any of the products mentioned in this post. This post is not meant to treat, cure, prevent, or diagnose conditions or diseases and is meant for educational purposes. As always, please consult your doctor before trying any new treatments or supplements.