I have recently read a book called "The Mood Cure" by Julia Ross. It has some rather interesting information in regards to people who are anxious/depressed and how they tend to seek medications such as SSRI's (selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitor). The long and short of it is SSRI's make people feel more "normal" or less depressed and anxious because it increases the amount of serotonin in the brain. Of course, this comes with many side effects. She has specific regiments (although you should still consult with your doctor) using tryptophan, 5HTP, St John Wort , L-Tyrosine and SAM-E supplements (these are not meant to be taking for long periods of time) to balance out seratonin and dopamine a more "natural" way while avoiding medications such as SSRI's . She also discusses foods that have these amino acids in abundance. I am not sure if low levels of serotonin plays a role in porn addiction but as a recovered marijuana and energy drink addict, I can see how I personally had issues with serotonin.
Our natural production of serotonin may be inhibited by: chemicals in your food such as caffeine, alcohol or aspartame. If you're not eating protein and healthy fat. Stress. Genes. If there's not enough bright light (during the day) to signal your brain to make serotonin. Lack of exercise.
Increasing fat intake increases the availability of tryptophan in the brain.
Females produce less serotonin than males do.
Estrogen helps serotonin.
Low serotonin: depression, shame and guilt/low self-esteem, obsessive or controlling, angry feelings, fear or anxiety. Physical stuff: gut and heart problems, sleep problems, fibromyalgia and other pains, cravings for carbs, alcohol and drugs.
Marijuana is seeked to boost serotonin, but at the end it inhibits serotonin production.
300mg of 5HTP per day for a week (but some require more), if no improvement:
tryptophan, which is also a source of niacin and other enzymes.
Saint John's Wort which helps to to raise serotonin levels when the amino acids somehow do not. It can be combined with the 5HTP. It works when 5THp doesn't, mostly in people with sluggish thyroids.
Sam-e sometimes, specially if there are arthritis and liver problems, but it needs more time, at least a bottle to see if it helps.
5HTP best taken twice a day, specially if symptoms in the morning.
IF too sleepy after months or weeks, or headaches after taking it, then enough of 5THP. Same if symptoms return.
St. John doesn't need the assistance of thyroid hormone to raise serotonin levels.
St John, 300mg three times a day.
Sam-e400mg, 2 and 2 capsules.
Melatonin 1 to 6mg
3 Do you have a tendency to be negative, to see the glass as half-empty rather than half-full? Do you have dark pessimistic thoughts?
3 Are you often worried and anxious?
3 Do you have feelings of low self-esteem and lack confidence?
3 Do you easily get to feeling self-critical and guilty?
3 Do you have obsessive, repetitive, angry or useless thoughts that you just can't turn off-for instance, when you're trying to get to sleep?
3 Does your behavior often get a bit, or a lot, obsessive? Is it hard for you to make transitions, to be flexible? Are you a perfectionist, a neatnik, or a control freak? A computer, TV, or work addict?
3 Do you really dislike the dark weather or have a clear-cut fall/winter depression (SAD)?
2 Are you apt to be irritable, impatient, edgy, or angry?
Do you tend to be shy or fearful? Do you get nervous or panicky about heights, flying, enclosed spaces, public performance, spiders, snakes, bridges, crowds, leaving the house, or anything else?
2 Have you had anxiety attacks or panic attacks (your heart races, it's hard to breathe?)
2 Do you get PMS or menopausal moodiness (tears, anger, depression)?
3 Do you hate hot weather?
2 Are you a night owl, or do you often find it hard to get to sleep even though you want to?
2Do you wake up in the night, have restless or light sleep, or wake up too early in the morning?
3 Do you routinely like to have sweet or starchy snacks, wine, or marijuana in the afternoons, evenings, or in the middle of the night (but not earlier in the day)?
2 Do you find relief from any of the above symptoms through exercise?
3 Have you had fibromyalgia (unexplained muscle pain) or TMJ (pain, tension, and grinding associated with your jaw)?
2 Have you had suicidal thoughts or plans?
If you score more than 12....
Anyways, I had a relapse about 10 days ago and had a quicker than normal recovery while taking some of these amino-acids (though I have been them for weeks). I felt much less anxious and surprisingly upbeat given the circumstance. I am not saying this from taking these amino-acids but I am curious if anybody else has had good or bad experiences with these supplements.