The nutrient 5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) is a derivative of the amino acid tryptophan. The body produces its own supply of 5-HTP from ingested high protein foods such as meat, fish and dairy products. Diets deficient in high protein foods could lead to a body deficient in 5-HTP. In the body, 5-HTP is a precursor to a neurotransmitter called serotonin, which is involved in sending messages through the nervous system contributing to a person’s mood and well being. Supplementing with 5-HTP can increase serotonin levels in the body which in turn minimizes conditions associated with low serotonin levels including:
The source of the supplement 5-HTP is from seeds of the African plan, Griffonia simplicfolia, so it is considered a natural substance. In many studies, it has been shown to be more effective in promoting sleep than melatonin. This amino acid derivative has also been promising in promoting mood elevation.
Kirkman® offers the Good n’ Natural brand of 5-HTP in 100 mg. capsules. This formulation also includes Vitamin B-6 which assists in the production of serotonin. Niacin and magnesium are included as nervous system supporters, and the herb valerian root is present to promote relaxation.
Side effects from supplementation with 5-HTP are generally mild and limited to nausea, constipation, gas, drowsiness or a decreased sex drive. If you are taking prescription anti-depressants or levadopa for Parkinson’s disease, consult your physician for advice on using this supplement. Taking over-the-counter cold remedies, pain killers or muscle relaxants with 5-HTP can cause drowsiness.
There is no recommended daily value for 5-HTP. Typical dosages are 50–100 mg. daily for children and 100–300 mg. daily for adults. It is advised to start with a low dose and work up to a higher dose if necessary. Individuals can react quite differently to this nutrient, so be cautious when beginning supplementation.
For adults, take one (1) capsule twice daily as needed or at bedtime as 5-HTP may produce drowsiness.
Gluten, yeast, wheat, milk or milk derivatives, lactose, soy, egg, corn, grapefruit, fish, sweetener, sugar, preservatives, artificial color, artificial flavor or sodium.
Keep out of the reach of children.
Store in a cool, dry place.
Do not drive, operate machinery or consume alcohol when taking this product.
If you are pregnant, nursing or taking any medications, consult your doctor before use. Discontinue use and consult your doctor if any adverse reactions occur.
Not intended for use by persons under the age of 18.