L-taurine is a natural amino acid and antioxidant that may help ward off disease, boost athletic performance, and improve mental performance.
VALI health supplements include L-taurine in Neuro Force  nootropic cognitive support supplements for its reported positive effects on the nervous system. The antioxidant may also help alleviate stress.
Don't believe the urban legend that L-taurine comes from bull semen or urine. The word taurinedoes derive from the Latin taurus,or bull, but there is no connection to the animals' body fluids.
You may know the word taurinefrom ingredient lists on energy drinks. It is included in many energy drinks.
Taurine is among the most plentiful amino acids in the body, including the human brain and muscles.
How taurine works in the brain
Neil L. Harrison, a professor of pharmacology at Cornell, told the Cornell Chronicle about a research study he worked on :
"We have discovered that taurine is a strong activator of what are known as GABA [gamma-aminobutyric acid] receptors in a regulatory area of the brain called the thalamus,. We had discovered these receptors two years ago and showed that they interact with the neurotransmitter GABA -- the brain's key inhibitory transmitter -- that is also involved in brain development. It seems that taurine shares these receptors."
GABA is another ingredient in Neuro Force . It is included because it is a neurotransmitter important for communication between nerve cells. It has been shown to boost mood and have a calming relaxing effect to relieve anxiety.
A dietitian speaks on the benefits of taurine.
As we said, L-taurine is an amino acid, among the building blocks of proteins that the human body uses to repair and grow tissue.
Taurine is found in meats and fish, and of course the body produces it, too.
Taurine is essential to health and may help the body:
- regulate levels of calcium in some cells
- create bile ssalts
- balance electrolytes
- support nervous system development
Taurine's effects on the brain & nervous system
The Medical News Today website has an article  on taurine about its possible in brain and nerve health.
The article says:
"Taurine supplementation works to promote healthy long-term memory storage. ... the amount of taurine in the brain decreases with age. Taurine supplementation may help to maintain these levels across the lifespan. Some scientists believe that this could fend off certain age-related neurodegenerative conditions."
A study of mice looked into taurine supplementation in mice with Alzheimer's disease. Some of the mice received a placebo, others the taurine for six weeks.
Mice that received the taurine showed improvements in Alzheimer-like learning and memory deficits. Further research is necessary to determine whether these same benefits apply to humans.
One study showed that a "taurine imbalance also seems to play a role in epilepsy, autism, particularly in people who have experienced a brain injury."
Animal studies have consistently shown that taurine helps alleviate symptoms of neurotoxicity and neurological impairment in rodents. However, there is currently insufficient evidence to confirm whether taurine helps to protect against specific neurological conditions in humans.
The best reasons to take L-taurine
A Healthline article  lists "a surprisingly wide range" of other potential benefits of taurine. Here are some of the other best reasons to take taurine:
- Though further study is needed, taurine may lower blood sugar levels, which helps people with diabetes. It may also lower risk factors for heart disease, including cholesterol and blood pressure.
"Taurine plays several important roles in your muscles and may aid various aspects of exercise performance by reducing fatigue, increasing fat burning and decreasing muscle damage," Healthline says.
- May improve hearing and eyesight among some people.
- Eliminated ringing in the ears of 12% of people who took taurine supplements. Ringing in the ears may be a precursor to hearing loss.
- "Finally, it can protect liver cells against free radical and toxin damage. In one study, 2 grams of taurine taken three times per day reduced markers of liver damage while decreasing oxidative stress," Healthline says
The article cautions that more research of these benefits is needed.
But among the best reasons to take taurine is for its mental benefits. That's why VALI includes it in Neuro Force, a nootropic supplement that enhances brain and nerve health, calms, and alleviates stress.
Other ingredients in Neuro Force
VALI's Neuro Force supplement is not just L-taurine. Neuro Force's other mental health enhancers are:
- DMAE to help with learning and memory; GABA to boost mood and relieve anxiety.
- Alpha lipoic acid to protect the brain and help with memory and nerve damage.
- L-theanine to promote relaxation, reduce stress. It is used to treat anxiety and memory loss. See this blog  for more on L-theanine and nootropics.
- Caffeine to improve strength, endurance, coordination reaction time, and to reduce fatigue.
- Synapsa, or Bacopa monnieri, an antioxidant used in traditional medicine for longevity, neuron communication, and cognitive enhancement.
- N-acetyl l-tyrosine, another amino acid to improve cognition, memory, and wellbeing, and alleviate stress.
- L-carnitine is another amino acid. It helps produce energy. It can protect and repair neurons, increase capacity of mitochondria, and increase alertness. Shown to alleviate neurological decline and fatigue. See this blog  for more on L-caritine and Neuro Force.