Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Tryptophan Supplements to Sleep Easy

Tryptophan is a vital amino acid important in protein synthesis and only available through diet or supplements. Once the body receives tryptophan we convert it to an amino acid, L-tryptophan which is a precursor for serotonin. Serotonin converts to melatonin at night which controls our sleep/wake cycle and in turn promotes sleep. When you do not consume enough tryptophan it affects serotonin levels, low serotonin levels can cause sleep deprivation. Just two tryptophan supplements taken early in the evening can affectively increase your serotonin level and induce sleep. It is also important to take vitamin B-6 in combination with complex carbohydrates to increase the effects of tryptophan, according to certain researchers. A high carbohydrate meal releases insulin that helps clear the bloodstream and allow tryptophan to flow.

Dietary sources of tryptophan include whole grains, nuts, seeds, cereals, turkey, beans, eggs, fish and milk. Make sure when eating high protein foods they should accompany carbohydrates to divert the body from making too much tyrosine an amino acid that makes the brain more alert, which can make it harder for you to fall asleep easy. Along with a high-protein diet, smoking and high sugar intake can reduce the amount of tryptophan that is converted to serotonin. The result being that low serotonin levels can not convert to melatonin therefore causing insufficient sleep. Also people that don’t produce enough of the amino acid, L-tryptophan may crave carbohydrates which may bring about overeating and weight gain.

Side effects are shown with both high and low levels of tryptophan such as dizziness, dry mouth confusion, restlessness and irritability. A tryptophan supplement is not recommended for those that are pregnant, taking an antidepressant or using any other SSRI medications. It is advisable to consult with your physician before taking any supplement to avoid a drug interaction.

Tryptophan supplements are available at your pharmacy, local health food store or online. Many countries make tryptophan supplements; it is encouraged to check out product reviews and compare prices. There are also L-tryptophan and Isotonic(x) L-tryptophan products available. What is Isotonic(x)? Isotonic means having the same fluid pressure as bodily fluids such as tears or blood plasma. When we digest food our stomach juice is secreted onto the food and our muscles contraction mix these contents together making a chyme (food solution) which enters the small intestine for absorption. When this solution’s osmolality is the same or nearly the same as that of normal human blood serum it is referred to as isotonic.

Normally if you consume a supplement your body must work for up to four hours to digest and absorb its nutrients. During this lengthy breakdown a percentage of the nutritive value is lost. Isotonic(x) products reduce the amount of time and work necessary to absorb the nutrients. Concentration and absorption are two factors that go together for proper use of nutritional supplements Concentration determines the amount of a nutrient is dissolved as it is directly related to the efficiency of absorption of the nutrient. The longer the supplement remains in the stomach the longer the time before absorption can begin allowing the supplement time to dissolve into the proper isotonic state. Isotonic supplements don’t need to be broken down into an isotonic state therefore they move faster through the stomach to the intestine to be absorbed quickly delivering maximum results.

The content in Tryptophan Supplements to Sleep Easy is for information purposes only, intended to raise the awareness of different solutions for sleep disorders and should not be considered medical advice. For medical diagnosis and treatment, please see your qualified health-care professional.
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