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Tyrosine for fatigue/tiredness?


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#1 minerva

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Posted 03 December 2005 - 07:20 PM

Has anyone tried taking Tyrosine to counteract sleepiness/tiredness?

I have a strong suspicion, after many many drug trials, that part of my depression is due to a low level of norephinephrine.  I think this because Sudafed, and other less legal substances that stimulate production of norephinephrine, work well to keep me from feeling tired, but SNRI's don't.  The logical conclusion seems to be that my brain doesn't make enough -- blocking re-uptake doesn't work because there's not enough there to make a difference, re-uptake or not.

So -- a couple of early studies showed that large doses of Tyrosine worked for people who needed stimulants (i.e., dexadrine) to treat their depression.  The dosage was 100mg/kg/day -- so for a 150-lb person it would be something like 6 grams a day.  Apparently this is safe.

I'm just curious if anyone has tried this.  I'm contemplating it.

M9

Edited by minerva, 03 December 2005 - 07:21 PM.



#2 Penny Century

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Posted 03 December 2005 - 08:32 PM

Has anyone tried taking Tyrosine to counteract sleepiness/tiredness?


i take it along with some other things for brain fog/ depression/ Chronic Fatigue.

I have a strong suspicion, after many many drug trials, that part of my depression is due to a low level of norephinephrine.  I think this because Sudafed, and other less legal substances that stimulate production of norephinephrine, work well to keep me from feeling tired, but SNRI's don't.  The logical conclusion seems to be that my brain doesn't make enough -- blocking re-uptake doesn't work because there's not enough there to make a difference, re-uptake or not.

i have no idea about the science behind this.  I had my amino acid levels tested and i was extremely low on phenylalanine, which the body turns into L-Tyrosine.  I have felt better since taking it, but I also take other supplements so I can not attribute all my feeling better to Tyrosine.

So -- a couple of early studies showed that large doses of Tyrosine worked for people who needed stimulants (i.e., dexadrine) to treat their depression.  The dosage was 100mg/kg/day -- so for a 150-lb person it would be something like 6 grams a day.  Apparently this is safe.

I'm just curious if anyone has tried this.  I'm contemplating it.

M9

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


I think the dosage level you're speaking of is the guideline used for people who suffer from PKU (Phenylketonuria) which is a rare genetic problem where people can not process phenlalanine, and consequently end up with very reduced levels of L-Tyrosine.  In someone not suffering from PKU, taking this much L-Tyrosine is dangerous.

I take 500mg twice a day on an empty stomache.  This is actually considered a high dose, and there aren't studies on the long term effects of even this level of dosage.  If you decide to take it, please try starting with a low dose, see how you feel, and slowly increase to no more than 1000mgs a day.

I could not find any information about interactions between Tyrosine and SNRIs, and checking with your doctor before adding any supplement is always wise.  I have read that people on stimulants for ADD may need Tyrosine supplementation if their blood levels are low to help make the medication effective, but I couldn't find anything on SNRIs.

To aid in the conversion of Tyrosine into neurotransmitters, many reccomend that you take B6, Folic Acid and Copper (all of which can be provided by taking a multi.)

But, please, check with your doctor about any possible interactions before you start taking L-Tyrosine.  

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Penny
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#3 null0trooper

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Posted 04 December 2005 - 10:16 AM

I'll jump in and point out that the pathway from tyrosine to noradrenaline has dopamine as a middle
step.  As a consequence,  feedback from various serotonin, GABA, and acetylcholine pathways
can reduce dopamine transmission (which may mean reduced production and consequently
lower noradrenaline levels)

Ephedrine/pseudoephedrine directly act at some of the receptors activated by noradrenaline and 
adrenaline. They don't actually increase production, but might tell the body there's more than
enough on-hand, and so reduce production temporarily.

The stimulants release NA/DA and some serotonin and inhibit NA/DA reuptake. While this is
going on, the body's not likely to make more (all the gas gages read "full") , making the
stereotypical speed "crash" worse, and requiring the ADHD kids to take medication "holidays"
until NA/DA stores can build back up.

Tyrosine supplementation might help the body replenish stores faster once it realizes it *is*
short of neurotransmitters, and that's not a bad thing.  But, there are a number of places
that NA transmission can go "wrong" other than production: high threshold for transmitter
release/failure to release, faster than normal reuptake (both are improved by stimulants),
or faster than normal metabolism/deamination (improved by the MAOIs).

Some of the depression checklists/flowcharts do include supplementation by stimulants
or a shift to MAOIs if the depression symptoms aren't lifting to the extent needed.



If you still intend to try tyrosine supplementation you'd be far better off to try at the
500mg 1/day level for a couple of weeks than to jump straight into megadose range.
As I mentioned there are multiple systems involved with the dopamine intermediate and
they aren't the best to mess with.  Another viable option would be to include more
lean meat in your diet and cut down on simple carbs. (Well, it's at least the tastier
option)

Other options - which you have to discuss with your doctor if the sleepiness and tiredness
are still big problems - might be switching from an SNRI to an "activating" TCA
or even to Straterra, or  if your doctor thinks it is a failure to release NA or to keep it
in circulation - augment with a low-dose stimulant. 

Proof once again that we are the only adventurers for whom the letters "AD&D" stand for "Attention Deficit Disorder" - Roy Greenhilt, Order of the Stick

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