Losing weight and maintaining it can be challenging for many people. Taking 5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) offers numerous benefits, such as increasing feelings of fullness, which leads to weight loss. Taking 5-HTP also helps decrease symptoms of depression by raising serotonin levels, reducing chronic migraines, and increasing melatonin production for improved sleep. 5-HTP significantly reduces food cravings, by raising serotonin levels, without adding calories. Studies have demonstrated the effectiveness of 5-HTP in reducing body weight, appetite, and caloric intake. Optimal doses of 5-HTP used in these studies vary, and at Advanced Wellness, a medical weight loss clinic, we help you determine the best dosage for your optimal wellness. This natural supplement is simple, and consuming it is an effective way to lose weight and reduce belly fat, which is often caused by a poor diet that is low in protein and high in carbs. 


What is 5-HTP?

The body produces 5-HTP, formally known as is 5-Hydroxytryptophan, from the amino acid tryptophan. It serves as a precursor to the neurotransmitter serotonin and the hormone melatonin. 5-HTP is derived from Griffonia simplicifolia, an African plant, and has gained popularity as a dietary supplement due to its potential to raise serotonin levels in the body. This effect is similar to that of antidepressants which increase serotonin availability in the brain. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that facilitates communication between nerve cells in the brain and regulates various bodily functions, including mood, behavior, and attention. Increasing serotonin levels in the brain can often lead to improved mood and has been found to show weight loss benefits.

In previous studies, it was found that taking 5-HTP orally without being on a specific diet can lead to reduced appetite, decreased food intake, and weight loss in obese individuals. To validate these results over a longer observation period, and to investigate whether 5-HTP could improve adherence to dietary restrictions, 20 obese participants were randomly assigned to receive either 5-HTP (900 mg/d) or a placebo. The study was double-blinded and lasted for two consecutive 6-week periods. During the first period, no specific diet was prescribed, while a 5040-kJ/d diet was recommended for the second period. The participants who received 5-HTP experienced significant weight loss during both periods, as well as a decrease in carbohydrate intake and early satiety. These results, along with the observed tolerance of 5-HTP, suggest that this supplement may be a safe and effective treatment for obesity.


Obesity and 5-HTP

Feeling hungry more often is a challenge to keeping a healthy weight, which can lead to overeating and difficulty in losing weight. One way to manage this is by taking a dietary supplement, such as 5-HTP, geared to help counteract the feeling of hunger. A supplement can help individuals feel fuller for longer periods of time and that can lead to reduced food intake which results in weight loss. 5-HTP has clinical data to support its benefits in weight management. A study was conducted to evaluate the effects of 5-hydroxytryptophan on eating patterns in obese women. The study included 19 obese women with a Body Mass Index (BMI) ranging between 30 and 40, who were given either 5-hydroxytryptophan or a placebo for five weeks without any dietary restrictions. The effects of the supplement were evaluated on feeding habits, mood state, and weight loss. The participants who received 5-HTP showed decreased food intake and weight loss.

There are a few more scientific pieces of evidence demonstrating that 5-HTP is beneficial for those who want to lose weight. Another study was done to investigate how 5-HTP from botanical extracts helps overweight women feel less hungry. The study included 20 randomly assigned overweight females who were asked to take either the supplement or a placebo for 4 weeks while on a reduced-calorie diet. The participants in the supplement group showed significant changes in body composition, including a decrease in BMI. The study concludes that the 5-HTP supplement helps overweight women feel fuller and can be an effective tool for managing weight.


Additional Benefits of 5-HTP

Apart from aiding in weight loss, 5-HTP has been used for various purposes, including improving mental health conditions like anxiety and depression, by increasing serotonin levels in the brain. Serotonin is a chemical nerve that affects emotions, mood, and motor skills, among other things. Taking 5-HTP supplements can activate and boost serotonin levels in the body, leading to better sleep quality, reduced appetite, improved body temperature, sexual behavior, and pain reduction. Incorporating 5-HTP into your daily routine can help you achieve better health and life quality. 

For the last two decades, Dr.Dale Eubank, at Advanced Wellness has focused his practice on gynecology, gynecological surgery, and clinical research in South Texas. He is committed to providing the most advanced technology and treatments to improve the health of women in the region. One of the biggest obstacles he faces in his practice is assisting women in leading healthy, active lifestyles after going through pregnancy and menopause. The cultural and societal norms of South Texas pose a challenge to achieving a healthy lifestyle. Some poor health choices can negatively affect weight management, bladder health, vaginal health, sexual function, skin elasticity, energy levels, and overall women’s well-being throughout their lives. 

If you’re looking for a supplement that not only helps with weight loss but also offers numerous health benefits, consider taking 5-HTP supplement. Find out the many ways you can benefit from 5-HTP, and consult with our professional clinic staff on your journey to weight loss. For any questions and more information call (361) 906-1112.


Cangiano C, et al.. Eating behavior and adherence to dietary prescriptions in obese adult subjects treated with 5-hydroxytryptophan. Am J Clin Nutr. 1992 Nov;56(5):863-7. 

Ceci F, et al. The effects of oral 5-hydroxytryptophan administration on feeding behavior in obese adult female subjects. J Neural Transm. 1989;76(2):109-17.

Rondanelli M, et al. Relationship between the absorption of 5-hydroxytryptophan from an integrated diet, by means of Griffonia simplicifolia extract, and the effect on satiety in overweight females after oral spray administration. Eat Weight Disord. 2012 Mar;17(1):e22-8.


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