Vitamins and Nutrients

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5-HTP (5-hydroxytryptophan) Snapshot Monograph

Nutrient name: 5-Hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP)

5-Hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP)

Most Frequent Reported Uses:  Used to help maintain healthy serotonin levels. 

Functions/Clinical Efficacy:  5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) is an amino acid that is the precursor of the neurotransmitter serotonin and is made from L-tryptophan.  Influences the synthesis of melatonin  Reported to increase levels of brain dopamine and norepinephrine.  Influences activities controlled by serotonin, which include regulation of

Helps to regulate mood, impulse control (aggression and obsessive behavior), appetite (food cravings), and sleep.

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mood (anxiety and depression), impulse control (aggression and obsessive behavior), appetite (food cravings), pain control and sleep. Administration of 5-HTP as a dietary supplement has been reported to decrease the urinary excretion of serotonin.

Dosage Range:  Health Maintenance: 50-100mg, one to three times a day.  Clinical Use: 50-200mg, one to three times a day.

Symptoms of Depletion:  Studies on deficiency of 5-HTP have not been conducted.  A deficiency of serotonin may cause symptoms of anxiety, depression and sleep disturbances.

Toxicities, Warnings and Interactions:  5-HTP has been reported to occasionally cause gastrointestinal upset.

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