Some amino acids (building blocks of proteins) regulate the levels of neurotransmitters (present in our brain). L- tryptophan (LT) is one such amino acid. When L- tryptophan is converted into serotonin (a neurotransmitter), an intermediate product called 5- Hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) is formed.
Simply put, serotonin levels are directly related to Tryptophan intake (Tryptophan is an essential acid and body itself cannot produce it).
It has been observed that serotonin levels are directly affected in common nervous disorders that include depression, anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorders, aggression, appetite, sleep, temperature, sexual behaviour, and pain. Due to this, the administration of 5-HTP has been shown to be effective in treating a wide variety of conditions, including depression, fibromyalgia, binge eating associated with obesity, chronic headaches, and insomnia.