5-Hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) is the intermediate metabolite the body produces when it initiates the process of converting the essential amino acid L-tryptophan to serotonin.
Numerous studies of individuals with negative mood status have shown significant positive response with 50-300 mg of 5-HTP daily.
- Supplementation with 5-HTP will bypass the conversion of L-tryptophan into 5-HTP by the enzyme tryptophan hydroxylase – which is the rate-limiting step in the synthesis of serotonin – and is a conversion that can be inhibited by a number of factors, including stress, insulin resistance, increasing age, and deficiencies of vitamin C, folate, and iron.
- 5-HTP is well absorbed when taken orally, with about 70 percent going into the bloodstream.
- Intestinal absorption of 5-HTP does not require the presence of a transport molecule, and its absorption is not affected by the presence of other amino acids; therefore, 5-HTP can be taken with meals without reducing its effectiveness.
- 5-HTP has been shown to have a beneficial impact on mood, sleep, carbohydrate cravings, and discomfort associated with fatigue.
How to use: Take 1-2 capsules three times daily or as recommended by your health professional.
5-Hydroxytryptophan should be used with caution in an individual currently being treated with an SSRI, MAO inhibitor, or other antidepressant medication.