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tryptophan for sleep maintenance...?

Answered on April 14, 2014
Created March 30, 2014 at 2:36 AM

anyone have any info/thoughts/benefits/risks on supplementing with tryptophan to improve sleep maintenance (prevent/minimise night awakenings)

96440612cf0fcf366bf5ad8f776fca84

(19463)

on April 14, 2014
at 12:06 PM

It's harder to get tryptophan from food, even turkey is kinda low in it. 5HTP converts to it more easily. The stuff on risk was based on a spoiled batch that had a recall, it's not inherently unsafe.

01f49b2c56fcbd16b030f36340f0487a

(-1)

on April 13, 2014
at 06:07 AM

thx wtfgod. already experimented with potato starch & still use it during the day. but i do not take it late in the day...i am one of those in the minority (i think) where the dreams it gives me (when i take it late in the day) are too vivid for my liking & it worsens my sleep.

01f49b2c56fcbd16b030f36340f0487a

(-1)

on April 13, 2014
at 06:02 AM

thx for answering tash. yep, i have experimented with melatonin over the years, doses, timings, caps, tablets, sublinguals, sprays, from very small doses of 300mcg upwards.

i think it may have helped to reset my circadian rhythm. but as you mentioned has not helped with sleep maint, even after trying a number of sustained release options.

01f49b2c56fcbd16b030f36340f0487a

(-1)

on April 01, 2014
at 02:08 AM

valid point Britt.

the theory seems to be (tho i am no expert, hence my Q), that other amino acids compete against tryptophan for transport into the brain. so the idea is to take tryptophan on its own, away from other aminoes. it all seems rather complex (no surprise there really i guess)

Cf08ad26759fdd206a2c9f9385080a57

(995)

on March 31, 2014
at 01:13 AM

The l-citrulline in watermelon is a great way to boost your l-arginine serum concentration, as it's a precursor.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17352962

Personally, I tend to aim for a higher lysine:arginine ratio.

01f49b2c56fcbd16b030f36340f0487a

(-1)

on March 30, 2014
at 10:22 PM

your mention of l-arginine made me have a quick check of my cupboards for supps i no longer take, & i found some Now 500mg l-arginine capsules. something else for me to check my notes to see my reasoning for buying them at the time (the expiry date on them is Nov 2013. so i would have bought them quite a while ago).

01f49b2c56fcbd16b030f36340f0487a

(-1)

on March 30, 2014
at 10:16 PM

thx for answering @raydawg

"You'd probably want it as 5HTP, not tryptophan"...why do you say that?

i did compare the safety of 5-htp & tryptophan quite a while back, at the time i remember one being 'riskier' than the other. i will have to see if i can dig up my notes.

from memory, i was thinking that it was tryptophan that was the safer of the two...but may be it was the other way round...?

Cf08ad26759fdd206a2c9f9385080a57

(995)

on March 30, 2014
at 02:55 PM

Just watching your electrical potential drop toward a negative charge upon contact is an interesting phenomena. (grab your multimeter.)

Antioxidants improve health by donating and accepting electrons. An object will be negatively charged if it has excess electrons.

That's enough to pique my interest.

(Thinking more about it, when antioxidants donate electrons, they often become free radicals needing to be neutralized or recycled again with electrons or cleared from the body, where perhaps earthing would be synergistic in effect.)

7904c7276d7e48f1be887fabd263bfd9

(300)

on March 30, 2014
at 02:37 PM

http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/i-want-to-draw-your-attention-to-a-special-added-attraction-not-advertised-on-the-outside/

I'm not a doctor or a scientist. Just saying, it doesn't seem terribly convincing. Anecdotes are not evidence...even from lance armstrong...even if he really promises it works. Those studies I really can't make too much of, I don't know whats relevant or important or normal, they are however seemingly all funded by the same people and all of the researchers do seem to own shares in the company. It's not like the numbers can't or haven't been fudged before.

Cf08ad26759fdd206a2c9f9385080a57

(995)

on March 30, 2014
at 01:19 PM

I'm not sure how well a placebo effect can modulate the measurable electrical state and alter some blood viscosity metrics by a measurable 200%+, as well as altering electrolytes concentrations / metabolites detected by urine to significant degrees.

"Grounding increases the surface charge on RBCs and thereby reduces blood viscosity and clumping. Grounding appears to be one of the simplest and yet most profound interventions for helping reduce cardiovascular risk and cardiovascular events."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=icZIZ5UUoOE (placebo? I don't think so.)

7904c7276d7e48f1be887fabd263bfd9

(300)

on March 30, 2014
at 12:00 PM

RAYDAWG, you are a sick person for upvoting this!! :D

Pretty sure it was mostly the steroids giving him 'every last oz', not the grounding mat. :)

Would need to see something more substantial to convince me. Doesn't make any sense to me intuitively(limited knowledge) and it doesn't seem to have much credible support, beyond anecdotes. Again...that damn placebo effect can give good/bad results to anything if framed correctly.

Cf08ad26759fdd206a2c9f9385080a57

(995)

on March 30, 2014
at 11:48 AM

I'm not claiming it'll make you compete at the level of extreme athletes.

But, for those needing every last oz. of performance, these are the things they turn to in order to maximize their restorative sleep patterns.

"I'm thirty-seven and racing against guys who are ten years younger -- I am keeping up in fitness and my ability to race. Grounding has been a big help in allowing me to do that."

From the data, it seems to improve sleep / CVD / oxidative stress with something as simple as taking off shoes and getting fresh air. Very Paleo ideas and a fine "Paleo hack."

Cf08ad26759fdd206a2c9f9385080a57

(995)

on March 30, 2014
at 11:34 AM

The idea is to touch the earth, not necessarily plug yourself into the electrical outlet.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Nauo9G0rrM

While armstrong might not be the best resource, he did win the race (while using earthing) and does stuff like navy SEAL triathalons. Chris Lieto is another triathlete (winner of 06, 05, and 02 ironman competitions) with positive n=1 experience with it and has been sleeping grounded as a part of his training for years.

As far as I can tell, it's legit. Nothing magical, but, you might want to avoid staying insulated all the time.

7904c7276d7e48f1be887fabd263bfd9

(300)

on March 30, 2014
at 11:33 AM

I've also actually heard something about them being harmful as well. Being as they are plugged into outlets which don't provide proper grounding in a lot of buildings/homes.

7904c7276d7e48f1be887fabd263bfd9

(300)

on March 30, 2014
at 11:31 AM

Just hard for me to understand as there doesn't seem to be a real mechanism. The fact that the plecebo effect is so strong doesn't help the matter much, and the fact that only people who will pretty much try anything use it. (pro athletes...dave asprey) :D

Don't think lance is too credible now-n-days anyways

Both those articles end with

Disclaimer:

People doing the study work for and own shares of...Earthx L. Inc.

Would be interesting if it did work though. May convince myself to try it if it catches on more. >.<

Cf08ad26759fdd206a2c9f9385080a57

(995)

on March 30, 2014
at 11:21 AM

I've made the jump from non-believer to believer, as there is statistically significant data.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3265077/

Lance armstrong uses earthing, as do other highly competitive athletes, as it improves recovery.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3116537/

7904c7276d7e48f1be887fabd263bfd9

(300)

on March 30, 2014
at 11:14 AM

Is there anyone credible who uses earthing?

It seems kid of out there in pseudo-science land. Out there with biomats and crystals and negative ion generators and structured water and accupressure mats,,.ect.

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8 Answers

0
Medium avatar

on April 14, 2014
at 12:35 PM

Tryptophan is one form of amino acid that is not naturally produced and found in many foods, such as turkey. As it is not naturally produced we need to supplement it.

The benefits of Tryptophan are obtained when you follow the diet, which is high carbohydrate – low protein. Deficiency in Tryptophan leads to vitamin B3 Deficiency, sleeplessness.

Overdose of tryptophan supplements may result to diarrhea, restlessness, fainting, hyperactivity, trembling and vomiting.

0
7904c7276d7e48f1be887fabd263bfd9

(300)

on April 13, 2014
at 05:00 AM

For the luls.

May want to try potato starch, started taking it almost a week ago, the last two days I seem to have slept well quality wise... not sure if fluke but it is certainly unusual.

01f49b2c56fcbd16b030f36340f0487a

(-1)

on April 13, 2014
at 06:07 AM

thx wtfgod. already experimented with potato starch & still use it during the day. but i do not take it late in the day...i am one of those in the minority (i think) where the dreams it gives me (when i take it late in the day) are too vivid for my liking & it worsens my sleep.

0
F6422a1f1bd72157b58c61da4acc74e1

(25)

on April 13, 2014
at 04:19 AM

Tryptophan converts to serotonin,converts to melatonin.

I chopped out the middle-man and have been taking melatonin for years. It doubles as an antioxidant and gives you really vivid dreams.

That said,if your main concern is disrupted sleep as opposed to problems with drifting off , melatonin/tryptophan may not help.

01f49b2c56fcbd16b030f36340f0487a

(-1)

on April 13, 2014
at 06:02 AM

thx for answering tash. yep, i have experimented with melatonin over the years, doses, timings, caps, tablets, sublinguals, sprays, from very small doses of 300mcg upwards.

i think it may have helped to reset my circadian rhythm. but as you mentioned has not helped with sleep maint, even after trying a number of sustained release options.

0
2e777bbcd49262eb31a24f821abec6bc

(1974)

on March 31, 2014
at 11:39 PM

Tryptophan is just an amino acid that can be found in just about any foods with protein. If you get adequate amounts of protein in your diet then the supplement would probably just be a waste of money honestly.

01f49b2c56fcbd16b030f36340f0487a

(-1)

on April 01, 2014
at 02:08 AM

valid point Britt.

the theory seems to be (tho i am no expert, hence my Q), that other amino acids compete against tryptophan for transport into the brain. so the idea is to take tryptophan on its own, away from other aminoes. it all seems rather complex (no surprise there really i guess)

0
96440612cf0fcf366bf5ad8f776fca84

(19463)

on March 30, 2014
at 11:58 AM

You'd probably want it as 5HTP, not trytophan.

I found that L-Arginine helps me with sleep, but that's due to genetic issues.

01f49b2c56fcbd16b030f36340f0487a

(-1)

on March 30, 2014
at 10:22 PM

your mention of l-arginine made me have a quick check of my cupboards for supps i no longer take, & i found some Now 500mg l-arginine capsules. something else for me to check my notes to see my reasoning for buying them at the time (the expiry date on them is Nov 2013. so i would have bought them quite a while ago).

01f49b2c56fcbd16b030f36340f0487a

(-1)

on March 30, 2014
at 10:16 PM

thx for answering @raydawg

"You'd probably want it as 5HTP, not tryptophan"...why do you say that?

i did compare the safety of 5-htp & tryptophan quite a while back, at the time i remember one being 'riskier' than the other. i will have to see if i can dig up my notes.

from memory, i was thinking that it was tryptophan that was the safer of the two...but may be it was the other way round...?

0
7904c7276d7e48f1be887fabd263bfd9

(300)

on March 30, 2014
at 11:43 AM

I don't think using the grounding mat made him win the race...was probably the tens of thousands of hours of training and the steroids.

I understand the concept. Just not terribly viable for most to sleep outside...or to even go barefoot through the grass during the day.

edit: Woops, this is not an answer. Damn default reply box tricked me!

Cf08ad26759fdd206a2c9f9385080a57

(995)

on March 30, 2014
at 11:48 AM

I'm not claiming it'll make you compete at the level of extreme athletes.

But, for those needing every last oz. of performance, these are the things they turn to in order to maximize their restorative sleep patterns.

"I'm thirty-seven and racing against guys who are ten years younger -- I am keeping up in fitness and my ability to race. Grounding has been a big help in allowing me to do that."

From the data, it seems to improve sleep / CVD / oxidative stress with something as simple as taking off shoes and getting fresh air. Very Paleo ideas and a fine "Paleo hack."

0
Cf08ad26759fdd206a2c9f9385080a57

(995)

on March 30, 2014
at 10:34 AM

You might look into p5p / b6 and zinc rich foods. b6 is required for tryptophan to convert to niacin with a zinc-dependent enzyme. When niacin is low, most of your tryptophan is going toward replenishing that instead of going toward serotonin to convert into melatonin.

http://www.kegg.jp/kegg-bin/highlight_pathway?scale=1.0&map=map00380&keyword=tryptophan

Ideally, you're trying to get this to happen:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15663184

As wtfgod suggested, I'd just hit up some meat. Or, go straight to supplementing at melatonin or niacin.

I'll throw this out there too.

http://www.bulletproofexec.com/earthing/

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21469913

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=11PC8AFrh5w&t=180

7904c7276d7e48f1be887fabd263bfd9

(300)

on March 30, 2014
at 11:14 AM

Is there anyone credible who uses earthing?

It seems kid of out there in pseudo-science land. Out there with biomats and crystals and negative ion generators and structured water and accupressure mats,,.ect.

0
7904c7276d7e48f1be887fabd263bfd9

(300)

on March 30, 2014
at 09:31 AM

	   Taking L-tryptophan might decrease the amount of time it takes to fall  asleep and improve mood in healthy people with sleep problems. There is  also some evidence that taking L-tryptophan might decrease episodes in  some people who periodically stop breathing during sleep (sleep apnea).
	 L-tryptophan is POSSIBLY UNSAFE when taken by mouth. It has been linked to over 1500 reports of eosinophilia-myalgia syndrome (EMS) and 37 deaths

www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-326-L-TRYPTOPHAN.aspx

Doesn't seem to look overly fondly on it. Although I guess there is a possibility for it to work? Would it not be wiser to just increase tryptophan rich foods, possibly for diner?

Note: Game meats, bacon, spinach and cheese contain this. Get your caveman on!

Disclaimer: I have no clue what I'm talking about, please don't listen to me. Might want to also read that WebMD link in full as this is listed under, 'possibly ineffective for'.

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