5-HTP & better sleep

5-HTP (L-tryptophan or 5 HydroxyTryptoPhan) acts as an antioxidant and is the direct precursor of serotonin and melatonin. 5-HTP is produced in your body and is part of the production process of serotonin. If serotonin levels in the body are low, you may experience sleep problems. By taking the 5-HTP you support your body in its production of serotonin and you will fall asleep easier and sleep through better.

Causes of poor sleep

A shortage of serotonin in the brain can cause sleeping problems. Serotonin is known as one of the happiness hormones. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that influences various functions in the body. The communication between the cells in your brain is provided by neurotransmitters, of which serotonin is one, along with dopamine, oxytocin and adrenaline, among others. If your body does not produce enough serotonin, you may experience sleeping problems. You have difficulty falling asleep and you have difficulty sleeping through the night. Besides sleeping problems, depressive complaints and anxiety are also common causes of low serotonin levels. This lack of serotonin can be caused by the signals exchanged by this neurotransmitter being disturbed along the way. There are also people who naturally produce less serotonin. Long-term stress, a shortage of certain vitamins and minerals, and the consumption of caffeine and alcohol can also negatively influence serotonin levels.

The effect of 5-HTP

5-HTP has a positive effect on serotonin levels. 5-HTP is part of the production process of serotonin in the human body and can also be taken as a supplement to support your body in the production of serotonin. Besides increasing serotonin levels, 5-HTP has a positive influence on other neurotransmitters such as dopamine and adrenaline.

What is 5-HTP?

5-HTP is a derivative of the amino acid Tryptophan. This amino acid is also found in protein-rich foods such as chicken, beef, fish and dairy products. Tryptophan is converted into 5-HTP, which in turn is converted into serotonin. 5-HTP is available as a supplement. The ingredient is extracted from the seeds of the African plant Griffonia Simplicifolia. After this three-metre plant flowers, pods grow. The seeds are harvested from these dark pods. Traditionally, the seeds have been used as an aphrodisiac and as a remedy for diarrhoea and inflammation. The leaves are used to heal wounds.

The use of 5-HTP

This natural amino acid is available in both capsule and tablet form. It is often used to treat mood disorders and is taken during the day. Its use in combination with sedatives and antidepressants is not recommended. For sleeping disorders, take a single dose in the evening on an empty stomach before going to bed. This supplement has the same effect as the amino acid, which your body produces itself. In this way you support the production of serotonin.