The PAGG Stack, Green tea, and the Sleep debate…

Everyone knows that one of the G’s in the PAGG stack stands for Green tea flavanols… but as a natural substance green tea obviously contains a wide range of different substances. 

Some of these are more active than others, and the one that particularly interested Tim Ferriss when he developed and tested the PAGG stack was ECGC – Epigallocatechin gallate.  This is what does the smart stuff in increasing GLUT-4 recruitment to the muscle cell surface, and increasing the apoptosis of mature fat cells, the two main reasons for the inclusion of green tea flavanols in the stack in the first place.  It’s also the ingredient that makes green tea uniquely effective in fat loss, as opposed to black tea – this volatile catechin is largely oxidised when tea leaves are roasted and fermented.

PAGG stack insomniaBut tea, black or green, contains other important substances.  One of these is the amino acid L-theanine, which is sometimes used as a relaxation supplement – it increases brain alpha wave activity, having positive effects on mood and stress.  It also boosts the immune system and has been shown to raise dopamine levels.  This may be one reason that many PAGG users have reported its leading to a deep and restful sleep, and why despite the caffeine levels many people prefer to enjoy the milder and smoother stimulation of green tea instead of a coffee for a daytime drink.

Because in its natural state, green tea does contain significant levels of caffeine.  Some PAGG home-brewers have got into difficulty with this, because to get enough green tea extract for Tim Ferriss’ recommendations you could easily end up with a shocking amount of caffeine into the bargain.  Even if you were going the DIY route using supplements, most green tea extracts on the market don’t list the amount of caffeine contained –they are not required to – so you can’t control it. 

Pareto Nutrition’s PAGG stack even in its first formulation was careful to use only the highest quality decaffeinated ECGC, to avoid this problem. However, it was one of the biggest customer service concerns pre-purchase from our customers (although only one client has ever returned a product for this reason).  Because we know that one of the biggest risk factors for insomnia is actually worrying about insomnia, and because Tim Ferriss himself subsequently advised removing the ECGC from the final dose, we opted to remove it from our reformulated product PAGG 2.0.  This was a finessing, a refinement – the initial design of PAGG should not cause sleep disorders provided a decaffeinated extract is used, and any elevations of anxiety or insomnia in response to green tea supplementation could even indicate an underlying health condition (which should prompt investigation).

 For most users in good health, there is no need to worry about PAGG giving you sleepless nights.

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