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5-HTP (as Griffonia simplicifolia seed extract)

Dr. Robert Pastore
Last updated on
Fact Checked by Dr. Robert Pastore
5-HTP (as Griffonia simplicifolia seed extract)

What is this known for?

5-HTP is generally advertised in dietary supplements for neurotransmitter and mood support.

Why are we using it in Power Off / Balance?

Function #1: 5-HTP increases serotonin production.

As a chemical precursor to serotonin, 5-HTP increases the production of serotonin. Increased serotonin levels promotes relaxation and reduces intermittent awakenings during the night, which enhances sleep quality. This has been shown in hundreds of studies in humans. One study also showed how safe this ingredient is even in children and how it can prevent intermittent awakenings during the night.

Bruni O, Ferri R, Miano S, Verrillo E. l -5-Hydroxytryptophan treatment of sleep terrors in children. European Journal of Pediatrics. 2004;163(7). doi:10.1007/s00431-004-1444-7.

Function #2: 5-HTP supports a more balanced mood.

5-HTP has been studied since the 1970s for its ability to support a more balanced mood.

Birdsall TC. 5-Hydroxytryptophan: a clinically-effective serotonin precursor. Altern Med Rev. 1998;3(4):271-280.

Jangid P, Malik P, Singh P, Sharma M, Gulia AKD. Comparative study of efficacy of l-5-hydroxytryptophan and fluoxetine in patients presenting with first depressive episode. Asian J Psychiatr. 2013;6(1):29-34. doi:10.1016/j.ajp.2012.05.011

Kious BM, Sabic H, Sung Y-H, Kondo DG, Renshaw P. An Open-Label Pilot Study of Combined Augmentation With Creatine Monohydrate and 5-Hydroxytryptophan for Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor– or Serotonin-Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitor–Resistant Depression in Adult Women. Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology. 2017;37(5):578. doi:10.1097/JCP.0000000000000754

Why this form?

Griffonia simplicifolia is a plant native to west and central Africa. It is a natural source of 5HTP. In the human diet, we manufacture 5-HTP from dietary tryptophan. Having a direct natural source of 5-HTP instead of tryptophan is ideal because it removes multiple biological steps and is easily converted to serotonin.

Can be found in:

5-HTP is not commonly found in any foods; we normally manufacture it in our bodies using the amino acid tryptophan, which is an amino acid found in plant and animal proteins (milk, meat, potatoes, pumpkin, and various greens.). However, some plants do produce it naturally, like the griffonia simplicifolia that we use as a natural extract.