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Old 07-14-2010, 01:14 PM
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5-Hydroxytryptophan

What is 5HTP?

5 Hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) and tryptophan are so-called natural alternatives to traditional antidepressants, used to treat unipolar depression and dysthymia.

5-Hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) is an amino acid that is the intermediate step between tryptophan and the important brain chemical serotonin. 5-HTP is not present in significant amounts in a typical diet. The human body manufactures 5-HTP from L-tryptophan, a natural amino acid found in most dietary proteins.

Serotonin is a compound found in the body and concentrated especially in the brain. This neurotransmitter is responsible for regulation of mood and behavior. Having adequate levels of serotonin can help in feeling calm and relaxed; having too little sometimes leads to irritability and uneasiness.

There are a few side effects that may last up to four to six weeks. These are rare side effects and are not associated with each person that supplements their diet with 5-HTP. The side effects include mild nausea, heartburn, flatulence, feelings of fullness, and rumbling sensations.

Who is likely to be deficient?

Disruptions in emotional well-being, including depression and anxiety, have been linked to serotonin imbalances in the brain. People with fibromyalgia often have low serotonin levels in their blood. Supplements of 5-HTP may increase serotonin synthesis in these cases. The cause of migraine headaches is related to abnormal serotonin function in blood vessels and 5-HTP may help correct this abnormality. Insomnia has been associated with tryptophan deficiency in the tissues of the brain; therefore, 5-HTP may provide a remedy for this condition.

5HTP and its benefit in Insomnia

5-HTP may prove to be better than melatonin. Several clinical studies have shown 5-HTP to produce good results in promoting and maintaining sleep in normal subjects as well as those experiencing insomnia (11-14). One of the key benefits with 5-HTP in the treatment of insomnia is its ability to increase sleep quality.

5HTP and its effects in depression

In fact, there is excellent documentation that 5-HTP is an effective antidepressant agent. 5-HTP often produces very good results in patients who are unresponsive to standard antidepressant drugs.

Because chronic headache sufferers have low levels of serotonin in their tissues, some researchers refer to migraine and chronic headaches as a "low serotonin syndrome" (15). There have been several clinical studies with 5-HTP in headaches, both migraine and tension headaches, that have showed excellent results (15-20). In particular, the use of 5-HTP in the prevention of migraine headache offers considerable advantages over drug therapy.

Dosage for 5-HTP

Recommended dosage for 5-HTP is to take one tablet in the evening on an empty stomach, it is better absorbed into the body on an empty stomach.

Research conclusions and further studies on 5-HTP and tryptophan

A large number of studies appear to address the research questions, but few are of sufficient quality to be reliable. Available evidence does suggest these substances are better than placebo at alleviating depression. Further studies are needed to evaluate the efficacy and safety of 5-HTP and tryptophan before their widespread use can be recommended. The possible association between these substances and the potentially fatal Eosinophilia-Myalgia Syndrome has not been elucidated. Because alternative antidepresants exist which have been proven to be effective and safe the clinical usefulness of 5-HTP and tryptophan is limited at present.
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  #2  
Old 09-14-2012, 01:53 PM
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Bumping up my old thread lol ... I might give 5 HTP another go when I get back home. I think I'm gonna need it. The US are the best anti-depressant there is for me ....
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Old 09-16-2012, 11:04 AM
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Cosigns! I now put 5-HTP up there as a must for most, along with Fish Oil, Milk Thistle, Vit D, etc.. I started it daily about a year and a half ago (during a tough period in life) and it is an awesome supp that really does work! I use it for insominia issues, slight night time anxiety, and appetite suppression. I know others I've recommended it for that use for the other benefits and I have yet to have any friend not back and tell me "OMG, it really worked! Its amazing"
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