It appears you have not yet Signed Up with our community. To Sign Up for free, please click here....



Chronic Fatigue Message Board
Post New Thread   Closed Thread
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 06-06-2007, 06:10 AM   #1
Junior Member
(male)
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
Posts: 11
cake_2 HB User
5-htp. Give it a go?

Hello,

I was wondering if anyone here has tried 5-htp?

I've been taking it for the last 10 days or so, and the effects have been amazing. So far it's been the only thing that's helped at all, and I've tried HEAPS of things. Allow me to explain.

I've suspected low serotonin levels as at least a contributing factor in my whole CFS debacle for a few months. Many CFS sufferers complain of difficulty sleeping, depression, etc. Many doctors prescribe antidepressants to CFS patients, which more often than not are SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors). SSRIs as I believe, simply make the brain use serotonin more effectively, which leads to a decline in overall serotonin production as your brain learns to use it better. I noticed that every time I started taking SSRIs (about 3 times now), I felt significantly worse for the first week or so. This eventually subsided, but instead of feeling physically better, I just felt slightly happier/more stable of mood.

5-htp (5-hydroxytryptophan) is the natural precursor to serotonin. It's a hydroxylated (slightly modified) amino acid which comes from some sort of plant extract. It's able to cross the blood brain barrier and once inside the brain, is readily converted to serotonin, increasing overall serotonin levels.

I have two friends who've tried it (for mild depression, not CFS), and including myself, all of us have noticed an effect fairly immediately after beginning to take 5-htp. Generally by the 3rd dose (day) the effects become apparent. One of the friends and I have, on separate occasions described it as "like a mild caffeine high, only without the negative effects (eg shaking, high blood pressure, nervousness etc)."

For me, my muscles still burn and ache to a certain extent (slightly less than before), but I feel much more awake and less "dead." I now have no problem sitting up at my desk for hours, which used to be a problem. Not to mention I feel much happier.

You can get 5-htp from health food/herb stores. In Australia (where I am), in most states you need a prescription, but if you order it from overseas, it's no problem. It's costing me AU$37 (about US$30 I think, including shipping) for 3 months supply (100mg per day, once a day).

If you decide to try it, there are certain things you have to do. One, you shouldn't take it if you are currently taking antidepressants. Doing so can increase the risk of developing serotonin syndrome, which is apparently quite nasty. I was weaning myself off Lexapro (5mg daily) at the time I started taking 5-htp and had no problem, but be warned. Two, you need to take it on an empty stomach (best if no food 2 hours prior and 2 hours after) and take it with a B vitamin (containing a reasonable amount of B6) since the enzyme which converts 5-htp to serotonin requires B6 as a cofactor. It's probably best also if you take it separately from any other amino acid supplements you may be taking. I'm also taking tyrosine 500mg separately once a day which apparently can help with "more vegetative depressive states" although I don't think it's contributing to the effects of the 5-htp.

I should mention that I'm male, about 187cm and 65Kg. Apparently not everyone has the same sensitivity to 5-htp, and some people say they don't notice an effect until they've been taking it for a while. Also bear in mind that I've only been taking it for 10 days at this point, but I've been so impressed that I thought I'd give everyone else the opportunity to try it for themselves since I know personally at this point, I'd try almost anything to improve my condition.

Please post any results, opinions, impressions as I'd like to know if it works for other people.

Last edited by cake_2; 06-06-2007 at 06:13 AM.

 
Sponsors Lightbulb
   
Old 06-06-2007, 08:48 PM   #2
Newbie
(female)
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: hermann Missouri USA
Posts: 9
tilia HB User
Re: 5-htp. Give it a go?

5-htp give me massive headaches. But since I have started the Sinatra protocol and had such great response to it that I was thinking of trying 5-htp again. Thanks for reminding me..

Connie/Tilia

 
Old 06-06-2007, 08:48 PM   #3
Newbie
(female)
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: hermann Missouri USA
Posts: 9
tilia HB User
Re: 5-htp. Give it a go?

5-htp give me massive headaches. But since I have started the Sinatra protocol and had such great response to it that I was thinking of trying 5-htp again. Thanks for reminding me..

Connie/Tilia

 
Old 06-06-2007, 08:48 PM   #4
Newbie
(female)
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: hermann Missouri USA
Posts: 9
tilia HB User
Re: 5-htp. Give it a go?

5-htp give me massive headaches. But since I have started the Sinatra protocol and had such great response to it that I was thinking of trying 5-htp again. Thanks for reminding me..

Connie/Tilia

 
Old 06-06-2007, 08:48 PM   #5
Newbie
(female)
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: hermann Missouri USA
Posts: 9
tilia HB User
Re: 5-htp. Give it a go?

5-htp give me massive headaches. But since I have started the Sinatra protocol and had such great response to it that I was thinking of trying 5-htp again. Thanks for reminding me..

Connie/Tilia

 
Old 06-07-2007, 07:11 AM   #6
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
jojo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: California
Posts: 2,846
jojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB User
Re: 5-htp. Give it a go?

Hi Cake ....

wow that is amazing you get a little buzz off of it..It made me tired. the lady at the health food store takes it to help her sleep. Funny how things react differantley on us all...

I use to take antidepressants...Because they are "Suppose" to raise our serotonin levels....Well I had a doctor do a test on me to see how high my levels were...And after YEARS of being on Antidepressants....

I had NOOOOOO seritonin in my body!! So like you I turned to alternative to restore the levels.

have you heard of S.A.M.E.? Or SAME...You might want to also check that out. It is a cell that is in ALL living things and is good for us. Beings we are a living thing....ha...I think....anyway...

I am so happy to hear you have found something to help you. Have you been tested for Epstein Barr Virus and Cytomeglovirus? Have you had your thyroid checked ...t-3 and t-4? I am doing SOOOOO much better since I have started Valtrex...antiviral.

Hope you continue to heal!


 
Old 06-11-2007, 09:17 PM   #7
Junior Member
(male)
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
Posts: 11
cake_2 HB User
Re: 5-htp. Give it a go?

Hey jojo,

I've tested negative for all the viruses. I've also had the thyroid and all the other tests and they were all fine.

I just got some Valtrex today, despite testing negative to the viruses. I'm going to be taking 2 X 500mg per day. When you say it helped you, how much, in what way, and how long before you noticed an improvement?

I also got some 25mcg vitamin D3 capsules to try...

Last edited by cake_2; 06-11-2007 at 09:23 PM.

 
Old 06-11-2007, 09:45 PM   #8
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
jojo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: California
Posts: 2,846
jojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB User
Re: 5-htp. Give it a go?

Hi Cake....

When you say you tested negative for the virus's ...do you mean yes the titers are there but are not reactive...From what I have read just about everyone has titers to EBV and CMV. If you have had chicken pox in your life time then you also have that type of herpe in your system...They like to lay dorminant in our bodies until something activates them.

Also I did read that even if they test say a person has titers for EBV and CMV and aren't showing active...then it is a good idea to still treat a person...so it is good that you are trying the Valtrex.

My story is kind of loopie...crazy...I have been battling Lyme Disease for around 20 years...but on the right treatment for 7 years...I have between my scalp and skull tissue that is raised like goose eggs...I have always been convinced they are bacteria (s) , or virus's (herpes) ....This started back in 2000....and they would raise up and down and I would get pretty darn nutty. couple years ago they decided to stay raised and it affected the right side of my head...thinking, eyesight, I can feel the blood vessels swell up...Anyway more to it..but I am seeing a doctor now that agrees that this is most likely what it is...either the herpes ..EBV, CMV or chicken pox herpe that has embedded themselves in there...When he started me on the Valtrex within a month alot of the parinoid feelings I was having started going away and my breathing started getting better...

Been on this dose for about 6 months (i think) ...I would really LOVE to get on a higher dose...and see if it will help me further...

Keep us posted on how you are doing on it ....There are a coupld of us on the Valtrex on here....

Read up on Dr. Lerner....some very interesting things in his writings...

Good Luck to you!!!


 
Old 06-12-2007, 05:18 PM   #9
Junior Member
(male)
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
Posts: 11
cake_2 HB User
Re: 5-htp. Give it a go?

jojo, that sounds terrible what's happened to you. So many years, you must be quite fed up with it all by now.

Actually, my blood tests say "no antibodies to CMV/EBV detected." The only things the litany of tests turned up were a fairly elevated IgE (over 250 when the normal range is below 100) and a fairly high level dust mite allergy. I'm currently having the dust mite desensitization shots, although I really don't think the allergy is contributing to my symptoms since I never have sinuses, watery eyes, etc. I also think I've had this particular allergy my whole life.

Interesing to hear you say you feel like you have a localised area where the virus/bacteria may have collected. I'm starting to feel the same way. My legs (mainly quadriceps) are by far the worst part of my body. They burn with what feels like an unbelievable amount of lactic acid and are always the most tired muscles in my body (often the only ones, but even so, it's bad enough to make me need to lie down). Since I was doing a ridiculous amount of mountain biking at the time this all started, I'm wondering if perhaps the exercise created some sort of favourable environment for a virus in those particular muscles....

Anyway, thanks for your replies. I'll have a read into Dr. Learner. Good luck to you too.

 
Old 06-13-2007, 09:01 AM   #10
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
jojo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: California
Posts: 2,846
jojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB User
Re: 5-htp. Give it a go?

Hi Cake ....

Not sure what all of your symptoms are..but have you looked into Lyme Disease?

Sounds as though you like outdoors activites...this is something you may really want to look into. I just researched Lyme in Austrailia and seems you have it there too...

don't let any doctor tell you there isn't a possiblity of it in your area...They truly need to go mainly on symptoms....

Glad to hear you are giving the Valtrex a go. Sure is worth a try. Need to be on it a few months up to 7 months to see if it is going to help...(from what I have read)....

Have a Great Day!!


 
Old 10-29-2007, 09:40 PM   #11
Newbie
(female)
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: indiana
Posts: 1
ah1979 HB User
Re: 5-htp. Give it a go?

JOJO-

hey there. i am wonderin if you can tell me more of your tx with valtrex. i am supposed to start it this week afte finding high titers to hhv-6, cmv and ebv. i noticed you had improvements with it and also with your breathing. i have breathing problems and am not repsonding to asthma meds so just hoping to hear how it has gone for you.

thanks,
ah

 
Old 11-01-2007, 08:38 AM   #12
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
jojo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: California
Posts: 2,846
jojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB Userjojo HB User
Re: 5-htp. Give it a go?

Hi AH,

I think I did about 8 months of valtrex and saw a big improvement. Valtrex is more for the EBV virus. I was doing think it was 1,000 mg a day...

Then from what I had been reading Valycte is more for CMV so I asked my doc to switch me over to that...I did that for the last 3 months...Valcyte is MAJORALY expensive...couple thousand a month...I have insurance....ugh!

Yes my breathing had gotten better and my muscles didn't feel all cramped up...I have talked to my doc and now we took me off and retested me. I don't have those results yet. I had him put me on Plaquinil for protozoa's. All of these virus's and such love to invaded every little inch of us. One just has to keep untangling that spider web to find answers...Started the plaquinil last week and it has helped alot too...

We all have to just read read read and learn the symptoms of everything and help guide your doctor in the right treatment for each of us...Which at times is a challege too....

Good luck with your treatment...let us know how you are doing!!

Have a great day...


 
Closed Thread




Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




Sign Up Today!

Ask our community of thousands of members your health questions, and learn from others experiences. Join the conversation!

I want my free account

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 03:44 AM.



Site owned and operated by HealthBoards.comô
Terms of Use © 1998-2014 HealthBoards.comô All rights reserved.
Do not copy or redistribute in any form!