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5-HTP can cause heart valve damage

Posted by iHerb Customer on October 13 2016 | Verified Purchase

I'm not happy with this product at all becuase I don't think that it's safe. There's too many people online screaming about how great 5-htp is but please read this article and try to see things from another angle. I sujest everyone including myself to do a research before taking anything inside the body. It has been shown that excessive 5-HTP can cause heart valve damage much in the same scenario as the naturally occurring carcinoid syndrome. Carcinoid syndrome is a disorder that develops when a tumor releases 5-HTP. The tumor is usually located in the last section of the small intestine but may also be located in the rectum, appendix, lungs or pancreas. Quote: In a 2005 issue of "Circulation," Bjorn Gustafsson, M.D., and coauthors reported on research designed to determine if rats given 5-HTP would develop changes like those seen in carcinoid syndrome. Ten rats that received injections of serotonin once a day for three months developed a deficiency of platelets, as well as diarrhea and flushing. In addition, six rats developed heart disease. Four developed damage in one of the valves of the heart, while two developed disease in both valves. Examining the heart valves under a microscope showed areas similar to those seen with carcinoid syndrome. So my point is that you can take it as a therapeutic thing or to help in recovery from recreational drugs. You can also use it to supplement any sort of perceived serotonin or balance deficiencies. Yet I would ward off high dosages daily for a long spanned duration. This could attribute to heart damage, which is well documented with this sort of drug. Another thing that I found was an excellent email from Dr. Steven B. Harris, MD that studies nutritional medicine, and his response about the 5-HTP thing gives a good example of why all things must be taken safely and with control in mind. He makes a serious joke out of the whole thing and wards against the possible negative consequences if it is abused: Quote: From: [email protected](Steven B. Harris) Subject: 5-HTP + B6 = Trouble; Doc Harris Presents Green Banana Award (was: US ban on tryptophan) Date: 29 Dec 1996 Newsgroups: sci.med.nutrition, sci.med, sci.pharmacy, misc.health.alternative, sci.life-extension, alt.support.depression Simon Friedman wrote: Jack Challem wrote: > If you look around, you will find a few companies now selling tryptophan supplements to doctors in the US. The molecular structure is slightly different, basically just the immediate precursor molecule. I checked with my FDA contact, and he said yes, it's true.< >>You can also buy 5-hydroxytryptophan from at least 2 mail-order outlets that I know of. 5-HTP is the next step in metabolism from trypophan on its way to become serotonin. Simon<< ------------------------------------------------------------ Comment: Yes, and in fact 5-HTP needs only one more step to become serotonin-- a decarboxylation. The sequence is: Tryptophan --> 5-HTP --> Serotonin. An exactly analogous sequence is: Tyrosine --> L-DOPA --> Dopamine In both cases the end product neurotransmitter does not get across the blood brain barrier very well, but all of the precursor molecules above are transported by the brain's large neutral amino acid pump, and they get into the brain fine. Thus, if you are a Parkinson's patient who wants to raise dopamine levels, you must take L-DOPA, not dopamine. Similarly, it would do you no good to take serotonin-- you must take tryptophan or 5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP). Now for the complications. (Aren't there always complications in life?) The final reaction to the neurotransmitter in both the case of dopamine and serotonin, is decarboxylation, and the same enzyme (the aromatic L-amino acid decarboxylase) is involved in both conversions. This decarboxylase enzyme is present in the liver, and it acts in the case of L-DOPA to convert the compound to dopamine before it can make it into the brain (and if this happens, the L-DOPA is wasted). The decarboxylase enzyme uses B6 as a cofactor for this reaction, and for this reason a Parkinson's disease patient taking L-DOPA cannot take more than the RDA of B6, because doing so would act to neutralize oral L-DOPA too quickly. These days, almost all Parkinson's patients on L-DOPA take the drug in a combination with an artificial decarboxylase inhibitor, called Carbidopa (the combination is called Sinemet). But even with Carbidopa, Parkinson's patients are advised not to exceed a daily dose of B6 of 25 mg, since more will overwhelm the Carbidopa effect, and cause pharmacologic L-DOPA to be destroyed in the liver before it can get into the brain. Now, Carbidopa, because it acts on the same metabolizing enzyme in the liver, performs exactly the same preservative service for 5-HTP as for L-DOPA. For this reason, neurologists have experimented with giving Carbidopa to people who needed to take 5-HTP to raise brain serotonin (this in the days before selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitor antidepressants like Prozac were available). The problem today with 5-HTP-selling companies bypassing doctors and going to laymen, is that a lot of health enthusiasts with problems who are enthusiastically taking 5-HTP are NOT taking Carbidopa, but they ARE taking a lot of B6 in one form or another. Yet without Carbidopa, more than a few milligrams of extra B6 per day would be expected to insure that most dietary 5-HTP gets turned into serotonin before it can get into the brain. Alas, one company I know packages their 5-HTP in 50 mg capsules with 10 mg of B6. They do this ostensibly so that 5-HTP can be converted to serotonin in the brain. Duh. This insures that any 5-HTP will get converted to serotonin in the liver instead, and thus never make it to the brain. Vitamin B6 is the *LAST* thing you want in an 5-HTP product. At the very best, people who take B-vitamins with 5-HTP, or who take 5-HTP products with B6, waste their money. All this would be merely humorous (caveat emptor) were it not for some other facts. At worst, ignorant people fooling with 5-HTP actually risk their health, since serotonin in the peripheral blood is not benign. Serotonin causes not only harmless flushing and diarrhea, but people with serotonin secreting tumors (hindgut carcinoids) also have problems with fibrosis of the endocardium and valves in their right hearts, which can cause heart failure. This fibrosis is caused by the serotonin. This effect can also be seen with dietary intake of only modest amounts of serotonin, and there has actually been described in the medical literature a tribe of South Sea islanders with right heart fibrosis as a result of eating green banana mash (matuki), which poisons them with its serotonin content. No, I'm not making this up. The hydroxylation of tryptophan is a rate-limiting step in the peripheral production of serotonin, and one bypasses it at one's peril. How much does it take? Several hundred milligrams of 5-HTP taken per day, if converted to serotonin, would result in a urinary excretion of the serotonin metabolite 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid (5-HIAA) of several hundred milligrams also-- an amount well within the urinary excretion range of the average person with a serotonin producing carcinoid. Such a dose of 5-HTP certainly would result in a serotonin blood load comparable to that of green-banana-diet eating people who have serotonin-induced heart valve disease. Normally, people do not excrete breakdown products of more than 10 mg of serotonin metabolites per day. If you take one capsule per day of 50 mg 5-HTP with 10 mg B6, however, you would be expected to go to at least 50 mg per day of 5-HIAA in the urine. Less metabolism in the liver (less B6) would result in less 5-HIAA in the urine. If you are going to take 5-HTP, therefore, you probably need 5-HIAA urine monitoring, to figure out just how big a dose of systemic serotonin you're actually getting (and incidentally, how much 5-HTP you're wasting). See a doctor! For all the reasons outlined above, I am presenting those vitamin companies who sell 5-HTP with B6, or who sell it alone but don't warn their customers about 5-HIAA monitoring or B6 intake, a special award: the Green Banana Award. This honor is for those supplement-sellers who monkey around with people's health before consulting with some really good nutrition and medical specialists to make sure they don't f*&% up and hurt somebody. Hopefully, companies which receive the Green Banana Award will contemplate its message, and will thereby change their behavior in order to avoid some of the less-coveted awards which otherwise await them in the future: the Civil Damage Award, for instance, or even the All-Expense-Paid Guest of the Federal Government Award. Steven B. Harris, M.D. I hope people read this seriously. What he is alluding to is the fact that people will take a naturally occurring portion of the body, market it to people to enhance their lives, and actually end up probably hurting them more without a single shred of knowledge that they have hurt their own body.

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Best thing on the market

Posted by iHerb Customer on November 18 2015 | Verified Purchase

I have been suffering with anxiety and depression. Sometimes it gets so bad to a point where I am unable to go to school or continue with my daily work. Sometime I wake up feeling that my life is over. However, I take two capsules in the morning and take a short nap and as soon as I wake up about two hours later I could not even remember why I was so upset! It may sound too good to be true but it really REALLY works. I will definitely be taking this long term and hopefully the effects will last.

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Mood Support

Posted by iHerb Customer on February 28 2008 | Verified Purchase

Great product. It has everything I was looking for in an herbal supplement for mental calmness. Helps with anxiety and the overwhelming feelings a mom of two young active boys can feel during the day. I have recently stopped an SSRI and consulted a NP/herbalist in regards to help make the transition from pharmaceutical to herbal. I also use L-Suntheanine chewables for calmness as well.

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Works for me

Posted by iHerb Customer on February 1 2008 | Verified Purchase

I've been taking 5-HTP for soft/mild depression for a few months. It works. It relaxes you and puts a smile in your face. I do not perceive any harmful side effects. The only thing in my case is that higher doses of 5-HTP get me sleepy and bit dizzy. I was taking only 5htp like 20mg in the morning and 20 to 50mg at night, about 2 hours before going to bed. It improved my mood for sure and the vivid dreams were bearable. Higher doses would give me nightmares... This formula worked for me straight away as it would for anyone I think especially because of the 20mg of 5-HTP. I've been taking for only a week and my mood is great. Take only one in the morning and one about 3 hours before bed. Good enough. It doesnt get me sleepy and tired and the herbs combo seems to be a good balance. I combine it with multivitamins and spirulina. Lots of energy and great mood!

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My first time trying this. WOW

Posted by iHerb Customer on April 30 2011 | Verified Purchase

I really was skeptical about this. I have had depression and anxiety alot this year due to stressful cicumstances. I was finding myself with no patience for my family and to be an all around irritable person. So I was determined to try anything and everything left to try! St. Johns Wort alone had no effect on this after trying for years. After doing much reading I tried GABA and L Theanine, and that seemed to really help with tension and anxiety, and really helps me sleep! 5htp I think is helping with depression, but this Mood Support is on its own something else. Even when taking these other supplements, if I am getting crabby or irritable it makes a HUGE difference. About 1-2 hours later I realize I again LIKE the people around me, and I feel positive and balanced. It really works so much better than I could have imagined it would! I think NOW foods really knows what they are doing with these synergistic blends, as I take Respir-all for allergies and it also is incredible! I have already recommended this to many friends.

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Very Good but..

Posted by iHerb Customer on February 22 2014 | Verified Purchase

Its very good. Sometimes i got bad news or fighting with my girlfriend i took 1 pill and the depression feeling just went away. But if i got into another fight after 5 hours the effect is gone. So i took another 1. It said not to consume more than 4 so i did not. I didnt take 2 at a time cause it makes me a little sleepy. Overall: Its very good. You can really feel the effect. I also worked at 7eleven for 8 hours a day. I took it before going to work and it helped with my anxiety. I feel so peace. Can handle the cash register without any panic when theres many customer. Good for people that may have mild depression and anxiety problem. You really can live a peace and healthy life for sometime when taking this! 5 star cause it helped me a lot! No side effect other than a little sleepy if i took 2 at a time! Thats all..

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Gave it a go

Posted by iHerb Customer on May 5 2008 | Verified Purchase

I really love the formulation of this Mood Support formula. However, I have tried to take on 2 seperate occasions and I believe it's the Valerian that is causing the unpleasant side effects. I suffer from dizziness that can lead to vertigo, anxiety and a little depression. This calms the anxiety, but at night seems to kick up the dizziness. I took one in the morning, and one 3 hours before bed with food. The first dose was more tolerated. On both attempts I couldn't get to the 3rd day of taking this. I do feel a little 'groggy' through the day as well. I have a sensitive system, so I tend to feel everything! Dang, I gave it a go! I will look for something without the Valerian, and see if that was the cause.

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Posted by iHerb Customer on May 2 2009 | Verified Purchase

This is great for mood swings and keeping a good emotional balance

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It really works

Posted by iHerb Customer on August 11 2016 | Verified Purchase

My daughter was taking medical drugs for stress and panic-reactions for years, but the side-effects were too much, so we were looking alternative for them. We tried many other herb based products, but balance of herbs was not good enough. In this his was perfect for her!

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Best ever!

Posted by iHerb Customer on March 9 2013 | Verified Purchase

Best product ever! Now I don't need antidepressant medicine. And my panic attack are gone! I feel better than ever! I feel calm and strong and happy. And i feel that i can do faster things (like cleaning). :) I have feeling that my brains are "clean".

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