Salt Enhances/potentiates GABA

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The study is a bit specific but it shows in essence that GABA is dependent on salt (sodium chloride) to function, and that the strength of GABA activation in the mammalian body can be controlled to an extent by controlling salt intake. It also is another piece of evidence showing the comprehensive view Ray has, and that it's all connected. 8% salt (which I assume is weight of total food) is insane but you don't have to go that high to feel the effects.

They feed the rats different levels of salt for 3 weeks and then measured their responses to GABAergic drugs. As an example, the high salt group had a stronger response to baclofen (chlorinated phenibut) at the same dose than the low salt group.

So, up your salt intake (while keeping your diet the same but upping water to match), and you should in theory feel more relaxed.

Effect of a high-salt diet on gamma-aminobutyric acid-mediated responses in the nucleus tractus solitarius of Sprague-Dawley rats

Effect of a high-salt diet on gamma-aminobutyric acid-mediated responses in the nucleus tractus solitarius of Sprague-Dawley rats - PubMed

Abstract
Previous study using an indirect gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) agonist indicated that high salt intake enhances sensitivity of nucleus tractus solitarius (NTS) projecting inhibitory input to rostral ventrolateral medulla sympathoexcitatory neurons. We further investigated the relationship between salt intake and the GABA system in NTS. Sprague-Dawley (S-D) rats consuming high dietary salt (8%) or low dietary salt (0.3%) for 3 weeks were used. Under chloralose-anesthesia, baseline arterial pressure (AP) and heart rate (HR) were similar in both groups. Bilateral injection into NTS of nipecotic acid, GABA(A) receptor agonist (muscimol), or GABA(B) receptor agonist (baclofen) elicited greater pressor responses in high-salt group. GABA(A) receptor antagonist, bicuculline and GABA(B) receptor antagonist, CGP-35348 elicited greater depressor responses. Phenylephrine or nitroprusside (i.v.) elicited similar respective increases or decreases in AP in both groups. Baroreflex sensitivity was similar. Thus, high-salt intake enhances both GABA(A) receptor- and GABA(B) receptor-mediated responses within NTS, thereby inhibiting elevation of AP.
 

Geronimo

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I've noticed this before. The last time I fell asleep before midnight is when I ate an obscene amount of super salty potato chips fried in coconut oil.
 
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I've noticed this before. The last time I fell asleep before midnight is when I ate an obscene amount of super salty potato chips fried in coconut oil.
@GAF This thread seems to substantiate your recent post :):
 

Geronimo

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@GAF This thread seems to substantiate your recent post :):
I usually fall asleep at around 4am while being unemcovidployed. That night I could barely walk up the stairs I was so groggy. It's far from absolute proof, but I often wondered WTF about that night because I haven't been able to get sleepy that early in the 4 months since then. Time to order some more of those chips I guess. I got them from Thrive market, which is the only reliable place I know of to get potato chips fried in coconut oil. They also make coconut oil mayo and mct salad dressings. It's pretty damn fantastic actually, really opens up a whole new world of food for us filthy peaters. I'll just make a new thread about that though. Back to the sleepy, sleepy salt. Do we think it's because of the general stress inhibitory properties of salt and GABA agonism is just downstream from that? Or is it acting directly upon GABA?
 

GAF

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I think one has to be slightly careful with fluid intake. Too much fluid with high salt offsets benefits. The whole idea is to increase saltiness of extracellular fluid. Too much fluid equals weight gain unless metabolism is high.
 

BigYellowLemon

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I usually fall asleep at around 4am while being unemcovidployed. That night I could barely walk up the stairs I was so groggy. It's far from absolute proof, but I often wondered WTF about that night because I haven't been able to get sleepy that early in the 4 months since then. Time to order some more of those chips I guess. I got them from Thrive market, which is the only reliable place I know of to get potato chips fried in coconut oil. They also make coconut oil mayo and mct salad dressings. It's pretty damn fantastic actually, really opens up a whole new world of food for us filthy peaters. I'll just make a new thread about that though. Back to the sleepy, sleepy salt. Do we think it's because of the general stress inhibitory properties of salt and GABA agonism is just downstream from that? Or is it acting directly upon GABA?

Well, GABA works through chloride ions, and salt is half sodium and half chloride, so it does make sense in a really basic way.

When GABA activates a cell, it triggers the cell to intake chloride. So if there's more chloride in the extracellular fluid, then there'll be a stronger gradient between the cell and it's environment, and so for the same amount of GABA, there's more chloride uptake in the high salt group.

Now why chloride ions make a cell less excitable is another question.
 
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