5-HTP isn’t your grandfather’s supplement. This one sparked our attention, so we turned our attention toward side effects, ingredients and clinical research. Customers tell us a lot, so we analyzed hundreds of comments and reviews. Then, we condensed and refined to give you the info you need.
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What is 5-HTP?
Hydroxytryptophan or 5-HTP is an amino acid that occurs naturally building proteins in the body. In the human body, it acts as an antecedent and is a metabolic connection between the serotonin and melatonin in tryptophan.
Serotonin in 5-HTP is a brain chemical that induces sleep, reduces pain and improves your mood. It is considered a safe supplement, and it is readily available in the US, UK, and Canada.
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How Did 5-HTP Start?
Nobel Prize winner Fredrick Hopkin discovered tryptophan at the beginning of the 20th century. It is an amino acid used for building protein in our body.
Since 5-HTP is a hydroxylated version of Tryptophan, both are used in the production of Serotonin.
5-HTP is the main ingredient of the Griffonia Simplicfolia plant that was initially used as a native medicine for several years. This plant was originally found in Central and Western Africa when there was no such evidence regarding its medicinal properties.
At that time it was used as an antiseptic having anti-inflammatory properties. It was given to humans to treat pain, burns, vomiting, diarrhea, tooth decay and kidney ailments.
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The amino acids in the 5-HTP supplement and L-tryptophan are essential for healthy functioning of the brain. Although, 5-HTP supplements are not available in many countries due to safety precautions.
5-HTP reviews suggest that it is useful to aids in sleeping.
There should be a difference of 12 hours between the 5-HTP dosage and the last dose of MDMA because if the two substances get combined, it might result in a dangerous increase in the serotonin level in the brain. This can result in a life-threatening condition called serotonin syndrome.
Despite there being many misconceptions and controversies concerning the effectiveness of 5 HTP supplements, there is no doubt that 5-HTP speeds up serotonin production along with speeding up the recovery process.
5-HTP is found in very small quantities in food. It is a chemical found in the metabolism of tryptophan.
Naturally-occurring 5-HTP is found in milk, meat, pumpkin, potatoes and green vegetables. The seeds of the climbing shrub Griffonia Simplicifolia found in Africa are a rich source of 5-HTP.
Does 5-HTP Work?
It is difficult to tell whether the 5-HTP supplements work as claimed. But the 5-HTP psychoactive action results from the increase in the serotonin production in the central nervous system.
Scientific studies claim that if it is administered with carbidopa, it will significantly increase the 5-HTP plasma levels, but other studies have revealed that even without carbidopa the 5-HTP dosage will be quite effective.
5-HTP is an amino acid found in proteins along with being a chemically changed type of tryptophan. It works to generate neurotransmitters in your body helping your nerves for cellular communication.
Many chemicals and processes in the body are affected by 5-HTP, even the hormone cortisol.
Benefits & Results
5-HTP Benefits and Results
Do you think you stand to benefit from the 5 HTP Supplementations?
However, due to insufficient research and lack of scientific evidence, one cannot be sure that 5-HTP supplements will effectively treat the above conditions.
Details on 5-HTP and Weight Loss
Do you think the 5 HTP weight loss is effective?
Clinical studies have shown that 5-HTP supplements give positive results in obese people. It reduces cravings for carbohydrates for those who are on a low-carbohydrate diets like the Atkins diet.
5-HTP found in Griffonia simplicifolia extract helps in weight loss, as it suppresses appetite and increases satiety in obese women.
Serotonin being a versatile neurotransmitter impacts your appetite. Although 5 HTP weight loss does not burn fat directly, it certainly increases your metabolic rate and helps to burn more calories. Studies conducted on women indicate that reduced food intake is secondary to satiety, but the result is a little loss in weight. The 5 HTP weight loss can be observed in both genders. But there is no definite proof to support the theory that 5 HTP supplements can help in weight loss.
How to Use (Take) 5-HTP
In Europe, the 5-HTP comes under the trade names Oxyfan, Cincofarm, Levothym, Telesol and Triptum besides a few others.
5 HTP for sleep can be taken in high doses to induce sleep or can be taken in combination with Carbidopa to treat obesity.
The serotonin precursor 5-HTP is marketed as a nutritional supplement, but it is best if taken after consulting a doctor or a medical practitioner.
Potential 5 HTP Side Effects
The effectiveness of 5-HTP is still being investigated. 5-HTP side effects are many and varied if it is taken in high doses.
Standard doses can produce many side effects. Potential short-term 5-HTP side effects can include stomach pain, vomiting, nausea, heartburn, muscle problems, drowsiness, nightmares and sexual problems.
5-HTP supplementation increases the level of a chemical called serotonin in the brain.
Effective doses to be given along with side effects of 5-HTP vary greatly from person to person. It is always advisable to start with a low dose gradually increasing it over time and as required.
For long-term safety and toxicity try a normal dose of 300mg daily and see the results. It’s always better to consult a doctor before you start with 5 HTP supplements as it is a little risky trying it on your own.
5 HTP research conducted is not thorough its effects and interactions if taken with other drugs is not known.
5-HTP Product Warnings
Due to lack of 5-HTP reviews, you cannot be sure that the product can treat any medical conditions.
It is recommended to follow all 5-HTP warnings and read the directions on the label of the product before using.
Pregnant and lactating mothers should avoid using it.
5-HTP is not recommended for children unless in extreme cases under the supervision of a doctor.
Any 5-HTP Lawsuits?
What works for some might not work for all. The only difference is how you handle the situation. There are several cases of patients using the 5- HTP supplements even in the absence of any scientific research.
5-HTP sold in US, UK, and Canada directly over the counter as a dietary supplement. It is not under the jurisdiction of any illicit control laws.
However, in Europe, there is some control over its distribution and sale.
5-HTP or Oxitriptan is a supplement that boosts serotonin.
But there are several other alternatives to 5-HTP, including:
Excess 5-HTP in your body can result in a sudden increase in the serotonin level, which in turn will lead to shivering, or even serious problems.
It has been observed that people who have been taking 5-HTP for a long period are detected with a serious condition. This could result in tenderness in the muscles and abnormalities in the blood.
Discontinue the use of 5-HTP supplements and immediately contact a medical doctor if you notice other effects like digestive problems, drowsiness, and muscular problems.
Recommended 5-HTP Dosage
5-HTP produces serotonin as well as melatonin. Both can activate sleep-inducing hormones.
For depression, anxiety, and insomnia, it is recommended to take a 50 mg or 100 mg tablet of 5-HTP about half an hour before going to bed. The effect will be seen within twenty to thirty minutes.
On the other hand, higher doses will be required for reducing migraines or for losing weight. It has been observed that 5-HTP dosage of 500 mg a day is usually prescribed.
It is advised to take 5-HTP in combination with Vitamin B6, as it works better in the production of serotonin.
But again, it is best to consult a doctor who can prescribe the right dose for your specific symptoms.
When Should You Take 5-HTP?
If you are just starting to supplement with 5-HTP, Dr. Bowen prescribes 50mg to be taken thrice daily for fifteen days.
Lower doses, when paired with other substances, will prove more effective.
5-HTP should be consumed at mealtimes, as it will help to reduce food intake while increasing satiety from food.
It is recommended not to take 5-HTP with neurological drugs unless prescribed otherwise by a medical doctor, warns Examine.com.
Visual, Auditory, and Cognitive Effects of 5-HTP
Besides physical effects of 5-HTP supplements, one notices some visual auditory and cognitive effects too.
Visual distortions are observed with a continuous or heavy dose of 5-HTP.
The visual effects usually mild but can be seen as Tracers, Drifting and Color Enhancement.
Hallucinations are auditory effects observed when one is on a heavy dose of 5 HTP. But such conditions are quite rare.
Cognitive effects though mild but can be viewed in patients who are on heavier 5-HTP dosage.
Cognitive effects can include Mindfulness, Sleepiness, Memory enhancement, Motivation enhancement and Thought acceleration.
Interactions of 5-HTP with Other Medicines
If high doses of 5-HTP supplements are administered to rats in combination with antidepressants like SSRI or MAOI type, it can result in acute serotonin syndrome, but this has not been proved in humans.
Unless both 5-HTP and MAOI are taken in large quantities, the risk of developing serotonin syndrome is quite low.
If Carbidopa is combined with 5-HTP, symptoms of nausea and vomiting are observed.
If 5 HTP dosage is taken orally, there is an increase in the urinary 5-HIAA indicating a metabolized serotonin.
Is 5 HTP Safe to Use?
As 5-HTP is a naturally-occurring process in the body, it is supposed to be safe if used on a short-term basis for about three months.
But people with gastrointestinal problems should take it only after consulting a doctor due to various side effects like nausea, and vomiting.
It has also been observed that all such symptoms subside considerably within a few weeks.
Although 5-HTP supplements should not be given with antidepressants, it is known to increase suicidal tendencies.
It is not safe for children, pregnant women, and breastfeeding mothers.
5-HTP and Metabolism
5-HTP is decarboxylated to serotonin with enzyme aromatic L amino acid and Vitamin B6. As this reaction is seen both in the liver as well as in the nervous tissues, the blood barrier is crossed by 5-HTP.
Studies indicate that a high dose of 5-HTP, if given with vitamin B6, will get metabolized and then excreted.
Psychoactive action can be noticed if the production of serotonin increases in the central nervous system tissue.
Appetite – There is evidence that appetite of patients taking 5-HTP supplements in high doses is notably suppressed. This results in less food intake.
Sleep terror – There are minor issues concerning sleep terrors with 5-HTP dosage, but general sleep disorders are certainly observed.
Cortisol – One study revealed notable increase in salivary cortisol after ingesting normal doses of 5-HTP
Weight Reduction – There is no direct relation between weight loss after being administered with 5-HTP. But due to less intake of food, there can be a little reduction in weight, but that is just secondary.
5-HTP and Menopause
The role of 5-HTP in menopause has been under investigation, and the results show a decrease in hot flashes and other menopausal symptoms due to Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs).
A study was conducted on women undergoing menopause who were given 150mg of 5-HTP daily in three doses of 50 mg each. After a week there was a reduction in the occurrence of hot flashes as well as many other symptoms faced by menopausal women.
5-HTP and Addiction/Withdrawal
When 5-HTP was administered to persons going through alcohol withdrawal, it was noticed that after nutritional therapy along with medium doses of 5-HTP for a month there was a reduction in the withdrawal symptoms.
What Users Are Saying
“I was having a lot of trouble falling asleep and when I finally did, I would wake up and couldn’t get back to sleep and I was miserable. I’ve been using this now every night for a month. I can fall asleep at bedtime and if I do wake up in the middle of the night I can fall back asleep again easily and not lay there for hours as before. I am 100 percent satisfied and so grateful this product works so well.”
“I am pretty neutral on this product. I’m not saying it’s not good, but I didn’t really feel a benefit in taking it.”
“I just tried one capsule the other morning and was sick to my stomach and then started vomiting violently. Whatever is in this, my body wanted it OUT!”
Are you still thinking about heading out for 5-HTP? Well, we like that it’s available at multiple locations and that it’s seems affordable, but when the research doesn’t exactly support the weight-loss claims, we start to have reservations about suggesting it. Also, when customers start to talk about negative side effects and it not producing results, we become concerned.
A successful weight-loss journey starts with the right supplement. So, we suggest going with a product that’s not connected to harmful side effects, but consists of clinically-tested ingredients that have been shown to work and are backed by positive customer comments.
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Produced from an African plant called Griffonia simplicifolia, 5-HTP is a supplement commonly used to treat sleep disorders like insomnia.
How Many MG of 5 HTP Should I Take a Day?
5-HTP is an unregulated supplement with few guidelines in place concerning dosage amounts. Follow the label on the bottle, as well as recommended dosage of 150 mg to 300 mg per day.
How do I know if 5-HTP is right for me?
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What is 5-HTP and is it Safe?
5-HTP is a dietary supplement made from seeds of a plant grown in African. The supplement raises serotonin levels inside the brain. Serotonin helps regulate mood and behavior, thus 5-HTP has positive effects on an individual’s mood, sleep habits, appetite, and sensations to pain.
What is Natrol 5-HTP?
5-HTP Mood Enhancer works to improve mood, but it also promotes regular sleep and helps control appetite. Regular 5-HTP users regain balance of the body’s natural serotonin levels, a substance that controls emotions, appetite, and sleep.
What are the Side Effects of 5-HTP?
5-HTP side effects include depressed mood, dizziness, abdominal pain, aggressiveness, headache, fatigue, gas, absence of menstrual cycle, drowsiness, and heartburn.
Is 5-HTP Good for You?
5-HTP is derived from an African plant called Griffonia simplicifolia. It is the nutrient precursor to serotonin.
Is Taking 5-HTP Dangerous?
There are dangers when using 5-HTP, particularly if too much of the product is elevated in the system. This spike can cause an increase in the serotonin levels, which may cause shivering, anxiety, and possible heart defects. A condition called eosinophilia-myalgia syndrome is also a concern for 5-HTP users.
Where does 5-HTP Come From?
The Griffonia simplicifolia plant produce 5-HTP in the seeds. This climbing shrub is native to Central and West Africa, where it is used as a 5-hydroxytryptophan herbal supplement replacement.