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5-HTP and Anti Depressant Meds
Hello, I am currently take Effexor XR and it is the only ant depressant that has helped to some degree, but has not elevated my depession completly.  My question is about how effexor works and how 5- htp is believe to work.  My limited knowledge of antidepressants was that witth the SSRI's (Seletive Seritonin re uptake Inhibiters?  Is that the currect name?  Well any ways.  I understood that some how the medicine recyles the Seritonin in the brain, or slowed how fast the brain uses it up.  Can you tell me which if any is correct about this.  Now my second understanding was that these drugs don't make seritonin, they just keep reuses the seritonin you already have.
Is this the same for Effexor.
Now on to 5 - HTP is said to make seritonin.  
Soi I guess my qustion is if the effexor doesn't make seritonin but just recycles it, would adding something like 5 htp which is said to produce seritonin be a benifit.  I know that there is a chance of having Seritonin Syndrome, but this is something I would like to looik further into if the above things I state are really true.  Thank for youru help
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316464 tn?1193805301

I would get off the ssri's and just stick to herbal... I have heard 5 htp can be very good as well as folic acid and a b complex supplement.

Weening off chemicals that mess with brain function is a great start to recovery. Then go out and buy the "Power of Now" cd's. They have changed my life!


Good Luck!
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251861 tn?1195543361
Hi LookingforHope:

1. Regarding venlafaxine (Effexor):  Unlike the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI) which only regulate the reuptake of the serotonin from the synapse, venlafaxine inhibits the reuptake of two neurotransmitters, namely serotonin and norepinephrine.  This class of medication are referred to as selective serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SSNRI).  There is an excellent article on Wikipedia about venlafaxine which you can find here:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Venlafaxin

2. Regarding 5-Hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP):  It is a naturally occurring amino acid which is a precursor for serotonin.  This means that it is used up in production of serotonin, but having more and more of it, doesn’t mean that you will have more and more serotonin.  There is an excellent article in Wikipedia about 5-hydroxytyptophan which you could find here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/5_htp

Good luck to you.
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316464 tn?1193805301
I do not know why more serotonin would not help. I would take the 5 htp for a little while just to see if it works.


jade
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Two herbs are very good to take. One is 5HTP and the other is sait john's wort. But make sure you take the Kira brand of Saint John's wort. They both could be a combination. Up to my knowledge these two herbs are taken for moderate depression and not severe cases.

Find a good acuputurist. The chinese philosophy in curing depression is a bit different. Thier believe is that the body is out of balance when ill. So all they are doing is bringing it back to way it was created. Read about it. The treatment  takes between 2-5 months depending on your body response and believe. Read about it.


Do not undersestimate the power of self awareness. Keep reading and keeping track of how you feel toward things that happen to you. How can you avoid feeling bad toward certain news or events. if you can control the inner self, you can achieve anything. Easier said than done, but it can be done.
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316464 tn?1193805301
Also if you keep your self on a strict diet!!!!  I am on a detox program. I used to get very depressed. I am not that way anymore.
My diet is meats but no pork, fruits but no citrus fruits or strawberries and  all  veggies. I drink water and tea.

No sugars, No dairy, No cheese and No bread!!! I think I am going to start eating pita bread though.

jade
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The Power of Now saved me. Also check out Esther Hicks/Abraham. They have videos on Youtube, books, CDs, etc. Research 'food and mood'.  5-HTP, melatonin, Vitamin B, St. John's Wort, DHEA are all good but always research everything before you put it into your body due to interactions with other meds you may be taking. I am not an advocate of prescription drugs, so I also reccommend reading 'Natural Cures They Don't Want You to Know About". Avoid caffeine, alcohol, and sugar as they interfere with your mood. Exercise, meditation, and yoga work wonders. Think happy thoughts and you will be happy.
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