L-Tryptophan

L Tryptophan.jpgDr. Dale’s L-Tryptophan is manufactured at a GMP facility via fermentation from vegetarian sources. Our L-Tryptophan supplement contains 500mgs per veggie capsule and is made from a glucose fermentation process, is Non-GMO, and wild-crafted. It is the purest L-Tryptophan supplement in the world! Our L’Tryptophan is suitable for Vegetarian/Vegans. Dosage on label; 1 capsule for every 50 pounds of body weight or as prescribed by a health provider.

For Relaxation, Positive Mood, Sleep and Appetite Control ©2012 Theresa Dale

L-Tryptophan is an essential amino acid and hence cannot be synthesized by the body, but must be obtained from food or supplements. Because L-tryptophan is converted to serotonin and melatonin in the body, it plays an important role in promoting relaxation, restful sleep and positive mood. An L-Tryptophan supplement may also help in reducing carbohydrate cravings.

L-Tryptophan is used for the following health issues.

  • Insomnia,
  • L’Tryptophan deficiency.
  • Sleep apnea,
  • Appetite control
  • Depression,
  • Anxiety,
  • Facial pain,
  • A severe form of premenstrual syndrome called premenstrual dysphoric, disorder (PMDD),
  • Smoking cessation,
  • Grinding teeth during sleep (bruxism),
  • Attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD),
  • Toilette’s syndrome,
  • To improve athletic performance.

L-Tryptophan is naturally found in animal and plant proteins. L-tryptophan is considered an essential amino acid because our bodies can’t make it. It is important for the development and functioning of many organs in the body. After absorbing L-tryptophan from food, our bodies convert it to 5-HTP (5 hyrdoxytryptophan), and then to serotonin. Serotonin is a hormone that transmits signals between nerve cells. It also causes blood vessels to narrow. Changes in the level of serotonin in the brain can alter mood.

Function

Amino acids, including tryptophan, act as building blocks in protein biosynthesis. In addition, tryptophan functions as a biochemical precursor for the following compounds (see also figure to the right):

  • Serotonin (a neurotransmitter), synthesized via tryptophan hydroxylase.[8][9] Serotonin, in turn, can be converted to melatonin (a neurohormone), via Nacetyltransferase and 5-hydroxyindole-O-methyltransferase activities.[10]
  • Niacin is synthesized from tryptophan via kynurenine and quinolinic acids as key biosynthetic intermediates.[11]
  • Auxin (a phytohormone) when sieve tube elements undergo apoptosis (the process of programmed cell death) tryptophan is converted to auxins.[12] Sieve tubes are mainly to transport sugars and nutrients up and down the plant.

The disorders fructose malabsorption and lactose intolerance cause improper absorption of tryptophan in the intestine, reduced levels of tryptophan in the blood[13] and depression.[14]

In bacteria that synthesize tryptophan, high cellular levels of this amino acid activate a repressor protein, which binds to the trp operon.[15] Binding of this repressor to the tryptophan operon prevents transcription of downstream DNA that codes for the enzymes involved in the biosynthesis of tryptophan. So high levels of tryptophan prevent tryptophan synthesis through a negative feedback loop and, when the cell’s tryptophan levels are reduced, transcription from the trp operon resumes. The genetic organization of the trp operon thus permits tightly regulated and rapid responses to changes in the cell’s internal and external tryptophan levels.

Tryptophan (IUPAC-IUBMB abbreviation: Trp or W; IUPAC abbreviation: L-Trp or D-Trp; sold for medical use as Tryptan)[2] is one of the 20 standard amino acids, as well as an essential amino acid in thehuman diet. It is encoded in the standard genetic code as the codon UGG. Only the L-stereoisomer of tryptophan is used in structural or enzyme proteins, but the D-stereoisomer is occasionally found in naturally produced peptides (for example, the marine venom peptide contryphan).[3] The distinguishing structural characteristic of tryptophan is that it contains an indole functional group. It is an essential amino acid as demonstrated by its growth effects on rats.

In bacteria that synthesize tryptophan, high cellular levels of this amino acid activate a repressor protein, which binds to the trp operon.[15] Binding of this repressor to the tryptophan operon prevents transcription of downstream DNA that codes for the enzymes involved in the biosynthesis of tryptophan. So high levels of tryptophan prevent tryptophan synthesis through a negative feedback loop and, when the cell’s tryptophan levels are reduced, transcription from the trp operon resumes. The genetic organization of the trp operon thus permits tightly regulated and rapid responses to changes in the cell’s internal and external tryptophan levels.

What is the Difference between L’Tryptophan and 5 HTP?

An enzyme in your body converts L-Tryptophan to 5-HTP, so 5-HTP is merely a stepping stone in the production of Serotonin and Melatonin.

While it is true that 5-HTP converts more quickly to Serotonin than L-Tryptophan, 5-HTP has far fewer functions in the body than L-Tryptophan and cannot replace L-Tryptophan.

5-HTP is extracted from an herb, Griffonia simplicifolia, which grows wild in western Africa. The seeds of the Griffonia plant are then hand-picked and dried and shipped to factories around the world where the extraction of 5-HTP takes place. Extraction yields only about 4% pure 5-HTP… hence, the higher price of 5HTP than L-Tryptophan on a per kilogram basis. 5-HTP is not essential except in rare cases when a patient does not produce the rate-limiting enzyme that converts L-Tryptophan to 5-HTP. On the other hand, because supplements of 5-HTP bypass this rate-limiting step, the body has less ability to modulate proper Serotonin levels. Therefore, 5-HTP dosage may need careful monitoring and adjustment and higher dosages.

Although 5-HTP has been prescribed extensively in Europe to correct some of the same Serotonin deficiency symptoms that L-Tryptophan corrects, such as helping to normalize mood, anxiety, and appetite, 5-HTP is not an essential amino acid and cannot correct an L-Tryptophan deficiency. And unlike the essential amino acids such as L-Tryptophan, 5-HTP does not typically occur in our diet. 5-HTP, however, generally will cause nausea on an empty stomach.

Dietary sources

Tryptophan is a routine constituent of most protein-based foods or dietary proteins. It is particularly plentiful in chocolate, oats, dried dates, milk, yogurt, cottage cheese, red meat, eggs, fish, poultry, sesame, chickpeas, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, corn, spirulina, and peanuts. Despite popular belief that turkey has a particularly high amount of tryptophan, the amount of tryptophan in turkey is typical of most poultry. Egg whites contain the highest amount of tryptophan. A chart showing all the levels of L’Tryptophan in foods can be located at the following website. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tryptophan

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