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5-HTP, Sertraline, GABA, Tyrosine & Phenylalanine
by Dave
Citation:   Dave. "Nootropics: An Experience with 5-HTP, Sertraline, GABA, Tyrosine & Phenylalanine (exp85473)". Dec 3, 2013.

50 mg oral Tryptophan - 5-HTP
  100 mg oral Tryptophan - 5-HTP
  2 g oral GABA
  4 g oral GABA
  1 g oral Tyrosine
  2 g oral Tyrosine
  1.5 g oral Phenylalanine
  2.5 g oral Phenylalanine
Since fighting depression for two years, I realized that any depressants either gave too many side effects, or stopped working in a month of use. So after experimenting with my diet, and activities, I got my emotional depression, and lack of energy (somewhat) under control. But my focus and some-what lack of energy was still a mystery to me.

So I decided to try nootropic/smart drugs to see if I could find the right substances to curb the chemical imbalances in my brain. This report was compiled over two weeks. And each of these dosages were tried 2-3 times each for the sake of science and statistics.


At first, I tried 5-HTP, which goes as follows: taken with Sertraline (zoloft) it greatly enhanced my (assumed) serotonin levels, to the point I could feel the serotonin increasing and acting my brain. SSRI users know this feeling as a bunch of yawns, a numb apathetic feelin. The dosage and results goes as follows (without Sertraline). Each of these scenarios were experimented several times each.
  • 50mg (bedtime): Sleeping is easy, but significant increase of dreaming, especially 'weird' and vivid dreams. Woke up feeling much better and less groggy.
  • 100mg (bedtime): Sleeping is more difficult than without 5-HTP, very restless. And once asleep I was prone to wake up 3 or so hours later because of the dreams. Woke up feeling very weird and paranoid.
  • 50mg (daytime): Decent boost of energy, and slightly enhanced focus (not enough though). No mood enhancement though.
  • 100mg (daytime): Typical Serotonin yawn episodes every 10 minutes, slight lethargy, and a very pronounced 'fried-out' feeling not limited to staring off into the distances.
  • 50mg (daytime, with sertraline): Though the serotonin effects were far more pronounced, my symptoms were alot less severe with this combination. 5-HTP also seems to counteract the sexual side effects of Sertraline. But alas, cognition was still lax.
I recommend 5-HTP over any pharmaceutical any day for general depression. And if you use other drugs, 5-HTP was a great suppressant for post-ecstasy crashes. And also boosted the effects of cannabis (especially the effects such as racing thoughts).


Secondly, I tried GABA in hopes of improving my cognition.
  • 2000mg (by itself): No real effect, however every 30 minutes it felt as if I was not getting enough oxygen, and I began hyperventilating. Nothing too scary though. Episodes lasted about 20 seconds.
  • 4000mg (by itself): No real effect noticeable still, I still have a foggy mind, but I seem to think a tad bit faster. And the breathing episodes increased in duration.
GABA also appeared to make my cannabis highs become a lot mellower and slow paced, and the peak high was slightly longer lasting. Also, after the fourth or fifth time with GABA 4000mg, the breathing difficulties ceased entirely.


Thirdly, I experimented with Tyrosine.
  • 1000mg (by itself): Slight mood lift, and cognition was noticeably sharper. I like where this is going. No other side effects.
  • 2000mg (by itself): A better mood lift, nothing really heavy, but it helps. Cognition was the same as 1000mg.
  • 1000mg (with 5-htp): This combination works great, with the cognition, mood, and energy enhancement of both - though not as effective as first few weeks of any anti-depressants SSRI or not.

Last I tried Phenylalanine, which is a precursor to Tyrosine.
  • 1500mg (by itself): Same effect as Tyrosine(1000mg), but this kicked in much later.
  • 2500mg (by itself): After 3 hours, I noticed some positive effects. But not as good as Tyrosine 2000mg. or Tyrosine/5-HTP combo.

Exp Year: 2010ExpID: 85473
Gender: Male 
Age at time of experience: 18
Published: Dec 3, 2013Views: 26,253
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Pharms - Sertraline (88), Tryptophan - 5-HTP (196), GABA (362), Tyrosine (363), Phenylalanine (445) : Retrospective / Summary (11), Unknown Context (20)

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