AKG, Longevity, and Anxiety

Written by Joe Cohen, BS | Last updated:

If you decide to follow a one-size-fits-all solution from your favorite health guru, you might accidentally trigger some really bad problems.

Here’s why it’s important to understand your own biology and develop a personalized regimen tailored to your unique body.

Recently, I did an experiment and it gave me some negative effects.

Feelings of helplessness, lack of confidence, anxiety… these were only some of the issues I came across.

But the difference is I do this as a profession.

I experiment to see what are the acute effects of certain supplements, so I expect this to happen sometimes.

But my go-to, daily personalized regimen is already optimized and developed by using my DNA and labs.

If it were someone blindly following a health gurus recommendation, things might have turned out worse.

So, what was the experiment?

My Tendon Experiment

I increased my dosage of AKG and, as you can tell, the results… not so great.

I’ve been taking AKG for a while, but I upped my dosage because I’ve been exercising more often and so I’ve started to have some tendon issues.

AKG helps by promoting collagen synthesis, which is essential for rebuilding damaged tendon tissue.

Collagen is the main structural protein in tendons, providing strength and elasticity.

AKG acts as a precursor molecule, meaning it’s like the raw material needed to make collagen fibers.

This all was great for my goal of tendon recovery, and plus it’s been known to:

  • Improve energy & nitric oxide production
  • Help with kidney function
  • Lower serum phosphorous levels, and
  • Improve longevity

So, I added more AKG into my regimen and with it, I accidentally triggered my body to start feeling anxious and helpless.

AKG and Anxiety

While AKG helps promote collagen synthesis, another thing that it does is contribute to glutamate synthesis.

Similar to collagen, AKG serves as the precursor for the synthesis of the neurotransmitter glutamate.

Glutamate excites nerve cells in the brain, playing an important and healthy role in many brain functions.

But too much glutamate can lead to overstimulation of nerve cells, triggering a cascade of effects that contribute to anxiety and other mood problems.

On top of my sudden boost in glutamate production, I also carried the negative variant of the GAD1 gene, which made things worse.

GAD1 converts glutamate into GABA, and by carrying the negative genetic variant, my body isn’t efficiently converting, putting me at higher risk.

So this just heightened the effects of AKG.

With this “experiment gone wrong,” does this mean that I’m going to completely remove AKG from my regimen?

My future plans with AKG

The answer is no.

AKG at a lower dosage gives me good benefits with no noticeable side effects.

I’ve also started taking Saffron to help decrease glutamate to mitigate potential problems. (I recently wrote about my saffron experiment, which you can read about here.)

The problems that occurred in this experiment didn’t affect my life so much because I knew exactly what was happening.

But for someone else, this can be a pretty scary experience.

I wanted to write this email to highlight the potential negatives of blindly following health gurus online.

It’s extremely important to understand your body and make changes based on your needs.

That’s why SelfDecode is considered the best precision health platform in the world.

Our cutting-edge AI algorithm analyzes your DNA, labs, lifestyle, and symptoms to provide you with recommendations that will help you reach your health goals.

SelfDecode is never the same for any two people, and that’s exactly how it was designed, as that is the most effective way to optimize your health.


About the Author

Joe Cohen, BS

Joe Cohen, BS

Joe Cohen flipped the script on conventional and alternative medicine…and it worked. Growing up, he suffered from inflammation, brain fog, fatigue, digestive problems, insomnia, anxiety, and other issues that were poorly understood in traditional healthcare. Frustrated by the lack of good information and tools, Joe decided to embark on a learning journey to decode his DNA and track his biomarkers in search of better health. Through this personalized approach, he discovered his genetic weaknesses and was able to optimize his health 10X better than he ever thought was possible. Based on his own health success, he went on to found SelfDecode, the world’s first direct-to-consumer DNA analyzer & precision health tool that utilizes AI-driven polygenic risk scoring to produce accurate insights and health recommendations. Today, SelfDecode has helped over 100,000 people understand how to get healthier using their DNA and labs.
Joe is a thriving entrepreneur, with a mission of empowering people to take advantage of the precision health revolution and uncover insights from their DNA and biomarkers so that we can all feel great all of the time.


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