Many of us have experienced feelings of drowsiness following a large turkey dinner. The reason why people tend to get sleepy after eating turkey is really quite interesting.
Eating turkey makes us sleepy because there is about 200 mg of 5-hydroxytryptophan in a quarter of a pound of turkey. Around Thanksgiving, people eat turkey, turkey sandwiches, and so on, and so forth, and then they snooze. They go right out in the middle of the football game.
5-hydroxytryptophan is not the same thing as L-tryptophan. However, 5-hydroxytryptophan gets converted directly into a sopophoric called serotonin, and serotonin will improve mood and induce sleep.
Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that functions as an antidepressant. When people take Prozac, or Paxil, etc., they’re increasing the receptor concentration of serotonin to improve their mood.
They don’t, however, increase the production of serotonin. What often happens, is that people take the antidepressants, and they start feeling better. After a while, the medication no longer works. Instead of addressing the real problem, the doctors often increase the dosage, or they switch medications, to compensate for drug tolerance. Instead, they should be making sure their patients have the right materials present and the brain chemistry needed to produce serotonin on their own.
5-hydroxytryptophan is my “go-to” antidepressant, and the worst thing that 5-HTP does is help you rest at night. That’s the very worst thing that stuff is going to do, and it’s cheap. Some people take 100 mg, some 50, but the typical adult dosage is 200 mg at night.
Depression and lack of serotonin can cause other issues other than just mood disorders. It can also manifest through sleep disorders, like consistently waking up around 4, 4:30am, and not being able to get back to sleep. Waking in the early hours of the morning is called late insomnia, or early morning awakening. The way that you deal with that, is with the 5-HTP. If needed, you can add L-tyrosine, and it that’ll knock you out as well.