Benefits of 5-HTP and L-Tryptophan

The Benefits of 5-HTP and L-Tryptophan: A Comprehensive Guide

5-HTP and L-Tryptophan are two naturally occurring amino acids that have been found to have numerous health benefits. Both 5-HTP and L-Tryptophan serve as precursors to the crucial neurotransmitter serotonin, which regulates a wide range of physiological functions. Here are some of the benefits of 5-HTP and L-Tryptophan.

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What is 5-HTP?

5-HTP, or 5-Hydroxytryptophan, is an amino acid that is naturally produced in the body. It is converted to serotonin, which is a neurotransmitter that regulates mood and appetite.

What is L-Tryptophan?

L-Tryptophan is another amino acid that is essential for the production of serotonin. It is also important for the production of niacin, which is a B vitamin.

Benefits of 5-HTP

  1. Improved Mood: 5-HTP is commonly used as a natural remedy for depression. Research has shown that 5-HTP supplementation can help increase serotonin levels, leading to improved mood and a reduction in depressive symptoms.

  2. Reduced Stress: 5-HTP has also been found to be helpful in reducing alleviating stress. This is because serotonin acts as a natural stress support supplement. 

  3. Reduced Insomnia: 5-HTP has been found to improve sleep quality and reduce insomnia symptoms. This is because serotonin is involved in regulating sleep patterns.

Benefits of L-Tryptophan

  1. Improved Mood: L-Tryptophan has also been found to be helpful in improving mood and reducing symptoms of depression. This is because it is necessary for the production of serotonin.

  2. Increased Serotonin Production: L-Tryptophan is converted to 5-HTP, which is then converted to serotonin. This means that it can help increase serotonin levels in the brain and improve overall mood and wellbeing.

  3. Reduced PMS Symptoms: L-Tryptophan has been found to be effective in reducing symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS), including mood swings, irritability, and stress.

Serotonin Boosters - 5-HTP and L-Tryptophan


5-HTP and L-Tryptophan are essential amino acids that play important roles in the production of serotonin, a crucial neurotransmitter that regulates mood, appetite, and sleep. Both 5-HTP and L-Tryptophan have been found to have numerous health benefits, including improved mood, reduced stress, improved sleep, and reduced PMS symptoms. They are also considered safe and well-tolerated for most people. However, it is always best to speak with a healthcare provider before supplementing with any new dietary supplement, especially if you have a pre-existing medical condition or are taking other medications.


  • Birdsall, T. C. (1998). 5-Hydroxytryptophan: a clinically-effective serotonin precursor. Alternative medicine review, 3(4), 271-280.

  • Chuang, J. C., & Sauvageot, J. (2020). Tryptophan and its metabolites in neurological health and neuroinflammation. Neuroscience letters, 725, 134902.

  • Young, S. N. (2007). How to increase serotonin in the human brain without drugs. Journal of psychiatry & neuroscience: JPN, 32(6), 394.

  • Steinberg, S., & Annable, L. (1982). The effects of L-tryptophan on mood and psychiatric symptomatology. Biological psychiatry, 17(3), 325-339.

  • Jangid, P., Malik, P., Singh, P., Sharma, M., Gulia, A. K., & Singh, I. P. (2013). Comparative study of efficacy of l-5-hydroxytryptophan and fluoxetine in patients presenting with first depressive episode. Asian Journal of Psychiatry, 6(1), 29-34.

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