Know About 5-HTP

5-HTP, or 5-hydroxytryptophan to use it full name, is an over the counter dietary supplement that has a number of uses including as an anti-depressant, an aid to weight loss, to help against anxiety and to help with sleep problems.

5-HTP is a metabolic intermediate and a naturally occurring amino acid; in fact our bodies make 5-HTP naturally from L-tryptophan. From there 5-HTP is turned into serotonin which has a lot uses in the body.

In fact serotonin is a vital brain functioning chemical. It is this serotonin that helps our maintain sleep patterns, regulates our moods and helps control hunger.

And it is this ability to control hunger that helps make 5-HTP useful if you want to lose weight. When you don’t enough serotonin, your body it does all it can to get enough serotonin into its diet.

However, it not easy to eat enough to get serotonin, so your body craves a lot more food and a lot of it is high in carbohydrates and fat.

So if you keep your serotonin levels on an even keel it can help control your appetite.  By taking 5-HTP it can work as an effective appetite suppressant as it will stop your body craving the high fat, high carbohydrate foods that the body needs to get more serotonin. However, it is important to note that different people overeat for different reasons, but if you crave carbohydrates such as pasta, breads, cakes and chocolate then 5-HTP could be the answer for you.

L- tryptophan, which is converted into 5-HTP can be found in various food sources such as red meat, seafood, poultry, dairy products and peanuts but even if you eat loads of these in your diet there is no guarantee that you will have enough tryptophan so the only way to get enough 5-HTP is to take a supplement.

There are also many other benefits to taking to 5-HTP and all because it produces serotonin. It is also used as an anti-depressant as serotonin can help maintain moods. It also can help with insomnia as serotonin help regulate sleep.
Find out more information about 5HTP from Holland & Barrett.

Image: Carlos Porto / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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