The Hidden and Powerful Benefits to Using TeaCrine

by Matt Weik, BS, CSCS, CPT, CSN

Every week, a new supplement emerges as a potential game-changer in the fitness and wellness industry. Theacrine (or TeaCrine) is the latest trend, taking the spotlight in high-end energy supplements.

What sets it apart is the promise of delivering a caffeine-like energy boost without unwelcome side effects such as jitters and post-caffeine crashes. Recent human studies hint at its ability to enhance mental clarity, provide an energy boost, and elevate mood and motivation.

In the quest for a new alternative to the familiar realms of caffeine, theacrine emerges as an intriguing alternative. But the question is, can theacrine truly be a superior alternative to caffeine, and could it hold potential benefits for those grappling with hypothyroidism?

In this article, we will dive deeper into the patented ingredient and supplement we have come to find in many supplements called TeaCrine and bring to light its many benefits.

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only and is not meant to treat or diagnose any condition. It is recommended that you speak with your doctor or dietician if you plan on making any changes to your exercise or nutrition plan.

What is TeaCrine?

Theacrine, scientifically known as 1,3,7,9-tetramethyluric acid, is a purine alkaloid with its roots in the cupuacu fruit and the kucha plant.

Originating from the Amazon, the cupuacu plant, a relative of cocoa, contains the theacrine compound. Meanwhile, the kucha plant, similar to the tea plant, thrives in the wild woods of Yunnan, China, specifically above 1,000 meters. Notably, it’s used in crafting Chinese kucha tea, containing both caffeine and theobromine. Fascinatingly, there’s an indication that theacrine is produced by the plant from caffeine.

The chemical structure of theacrine closely mirrors that of caffeine. Molecular studies suggest that theacrine activates similar receptors and signaling pathways, forming the basis of its intriguing relationship with these well-known compounds.

How Does TeaCrine Work?

TeaCrine, similar to caffeine, directly impacts the central nervous system but stands out with its distinct ability to enhance both cognitive and physical performance without leading to habituation. What sets TeaCrine apart is its prolonged half-life and delayed onset of action, approximately 2 hours.

Studies indicate that it can boost mood and subjective cognitive function without any adverse side effects or the risk of dependency.

TeaCrine’s effects unfold through two neural pathways: the dopaminergic and adenosinergic pathways. It activates dopamine receptors D1 and D2, supporting dopaminergic signaling.

Beyond its role in boosting dopamine, TeaCrine is believed to inhibit adenosinergic activity. Adenosine, a key player in processes promoting fatigue and relaxation, is influenced by TeaCrine through the inhibition of adenosine receptors. This inhibition may contribute to delaying the perception of fatigue.

In essence, Theacrine is thought to exert its effects through both the adenosine and dopamine systems, providing a mild stimulant effect while also offering a calming influence.

The Benefits of TeaCrine

Here are some of the most notable benefits of TeaCrine that are backed by actual science:

1.      Boosts energy, focus, and motivation

TeaCrine is a blend that includes caffeine, providing a lasting energy boost without the downsides commonly associated with caffeine, like habituation, jitters, or irritability. Research indicates that TeaCrine’s effects endure longer than caffeine, offering sustained energy for 4-8 hours compared to caffeine’s 1-2 hours.

In a study involving 15 healthy individuals, a single 200 mg dose of theacrine resulted in reported increases in energy, focus, concentration, willingness to exercise, motivation to train, and even libido.

Another study, this time with 20 healthy participants, compared a supplement containing both theacrine and caffeine to caffeine alone in a placebo-controlled setting. The results showed enhanced subjective feelings of attentiveness, alertness, and focus when using the combination of theacrine and caffeine.

2.      Improves athletic performance

Supplements like TeaCrine can improve performance by slowing down and reducing mental fatigue while boosting energy and focus. Unlike caffeine, TeaCrine enhances cognitive function without the usual crash, ensuring long-lasting, sustained energy without habituation. This can significantly elevate athletic performance and maintain a competitive edge.

According to a study, TeaCrine, when combined with caffeine, can increase exercise capacity and muscular endurance when compared to caffeine alone.

In a study with high-level soccer players, the TeaCrine and caffeine combo not only positively impacted endurance but also significantly improved cognitive function, increasing run time to exhaustion by 27–38%.

3.      Improves mood and cognitive function

When your dopamine levels are elevated, it improves energy, mood, and pleasure. Studies on rats revealed that high doses of theacrine activate dopamine receptors DRD1 and DRD2. Moreover, theacrine increases activity in the brain’s nucleus accumbens region linked to pleasure and reward.

Additionally, research suggests theacrine’s potential to counteract depression and anxiety induced by chronic stress, elevating mood and showcasing potential benefits in antidepressant treatment.

In a study with 20 healthy individuals, a supplement combining theacrine and caffeine had positive effects on subjective feelings related to energy and mood compared to caffeine alone or a placebo. It notably reduced sensations of lethargy and grogginess.