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Discussion in 'Health and wellbeing' started by jonowen, Dec 21, 2011.
Anyone have experience of this supplement?
Nobody? I've read that it's a good natural anti-depressant for a number of anxieties.
My son (aged 20) takes it sometimes for anxiety - I don't know much about it except it is on sale in health shops - I personally would not assume that it is therefore without risk or side effects. (St John's Wort is still widely on sale but needs to be taken with caution). My son gets all his 'advice' off the internet and insists it is harmless. Anyway, he reckons it helps take the edge off acute anxiety and calms him down. Could be placebo effect, I suppose. Probably worth a try if you are not taking anything else and don't intend taking it long term. I will post if I find out anything else.
Thanks CK,I have read lots of info (pros and cons) and would rather use this than ADs (which have not agreed with me in the past). In what I've read, it seems that what time you take it and what for depends on its success or not. St John's Wort worked for me some years ago but not any more, so I'm hopeful 5-HTP will work as my stress and insomnia are most definitely stress related. I do take Vitamin D regularly as living in the far north we have less daylight and that most certainly helps (even Mr.Jo takes it and he won't take anything unless he is desperate!)
I seem to remember doing my final year project on this at university. I was working on seretonin but this was 20 years ago. So can't help you - but it has bought up happy memories!!
Bought my son some 5HTP (having been reminded by reading the OP) as he has been unable to sleep and having a lot of jittery 'spasms' just as he is dozing off which wake him up again. He was very pleased (having been too skint to buy himself any). Two 50 mg capsules an hour or so before bed and although it didn't kick in straightaway, he finally went to sleep and slept for 16 hours. That was the day before yesterday. Since then he has been like a different person, much less bad-tempered and gloomy. Going off to work this morning he was still upbeat and, well, normal.
Another sign of being sleep deprived was that he has been complaining of feeling cold all the time so much so that I have been leaving the heating on overnight. This morning he woke up boiling hot and asked me to turn the heating down.
Holland and Barrett have a special offer - half price on 120 capsules for £14.17 so at full price that seems quite dear for a 60 day supply but he doesn't take it every day - usually only a couple of times a week or if he has had a 'heavy' weekend. It seems to stop the horrible 'Monday morning feeling'.
Given that a lot of his maladies are self-inflicted, I don't know what the effect would be on someone who led a more temperate existence - hopefully would be even more effective!
Interesting thread as I came here looking for opinions myself on 5HTP. I have been taking SJW for a while (few years ago had clinical depression which was "cured" by regular anti-depressants,. I feel mildly depressed now but don't want to go down the prescription medicine route again -too much effort to wean myself off them and I am not that bad. SJW is Ok but I had heard good things from a friend about 5HTP so got some and on my third day of taking 100mg (in the morning) Have to confess I haven't felt any different - in fact - maybe even slightly less "up" - possibly because I have ditched the SJW. I would like to take them both together but I don't know if you can. I also don't know how long before 5HTP takes effect -maybe I am too optimistic after three days! I will persevere over the school holidays -we'll see.
I have read that it is not a good idea to take St John's Wort long term, so if you can find something else which works it is probably a good thing. Even if you can give yourself a break from SJW it is better than continued long-term use. As I understand it, 5 HTP is more of a nutritional boost containing amino acid(s) rather than a 'herbal' medicine, so possibly acts quite differently.
I think you should be quite careful that you don't slide back into clinical depression and for that reason it might be worth discussing it with your doctor or at least someone who knows you well and can 'spot the signs'. As regards the 5HTP I think it may take a while to work out the best time of day and dosage but before bedtime might be better than in the morning - maybe it is relaxing you when you need to be up.
I know it is obvious but you also need to look at lifestyle patterns and whether for example, you have a balanced diet. If you are experiencing mild depression it might indicate a drop in some essential vitamins or minerals. Again, if you have a good doctor, it might be an idea to ask for a referral to a nutrionist to see if you are deficient in something. B12 is a likely candidate for all kinds of problems but randomly swallowing handfuls of vitamins can, as I'm sure you know, be potentially dangerous as well. Good luck!
Hi CKKendall - yes -thanks -all good advice. (I am "somebodyelse" to avoid being the real known me on TES unsurprisingly ) I think you're spot on about food and lifestyle patterns and it's something I need to address. I researched when best to take 5HTP and decided the morning rather than at night because it's not meant to be well tolerated with alcohol and I always have a drink in the evening - plus, I don't have problems getting to sleep. So I figured I might feel more of its benefits in the day -but, as said before - I haven't felt anything positive yet.
I didn't realise it wasn't good to take SJW long term - although I don't know what "long term" is. I tend to do it in bouts of a few months, stop, then start up again after a few more months.