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5-HTP

5-Hydroxytryptophan, commonly called 5-HTP, is a supplement that may help increase serotonin levels in the brain, which contribute to mood and behavior regulation.

Why Do People Use 5-HTP Supplements?

5-HTP supplements may be necessary in certain individuals who don’t get it through natural processes. Because it’s a chemical byproduct of L-tryptophan, a protein, some people do not produce enough within their own bodies. Some people choose to use 5-HTP supplements to make up for this deficiency.

5-HTP supplements are often used to treat:

  • Anxiety
  • Attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (commonly called ADHD)
  • Binge-eating associated with obesity
  • Depression
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Migraine
  • Premenstrual dysphoric disorder
  • Premenstrual syndrome
  • Sleep disorders
  • Tension headaches

5-HTP supplements are often prescribed in conjunction with drugs used to treat seizure disorders and Parkinson’s disease.

How Do 5-HTP Supplements Work?

5-HTP works in the brain and central nervous system. It helps increase the production of serotonin, which affects a number of bodily functions.

It’s always important to discuss 5-HTP supplements with your physician before you begin taking them. You and your doctor can discuss dosing information and what to expect when you’re taking 5-HTP supplements.