3. 5-HTP for depression
The body makes 5-HTP from tryptophan, an amino acid that comes from food. 5-HTP is then changed into the neurotransmitter serotonin, which helps to regulate mood. Dietary tryptophan is however inadequate for increasing 5-HTP levels and 5-HTP supplements are necessary.
Some research has proven that 5-HTP can work as efficiently as several kinds of antidepressants for treating individuals having mild – moderate depression. One study found that individuals taking 5-HTP had the same results as those taking the antidepressant Imipramine.
An analysis of studies published in 2012 however came to the conclusion that 5-HTP is no better than a placebo.