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I have tried 5thp but read that Dr. Weil liked Sam-e better...r/o please..

I have depression and also have huge PMS symptoms. Is it ok to use both 5htp and SAM-e? I have been on the 5htp for about a month and have huge insomnia. I take 50 mg. in the am. I also feel tired all day. Should I take the 5htp at night before bed? I've read on this board that 5htp helps them with sleep? Am I taking it at the wrong time of day???

I also thought it would help my PMS but to no avail. (My depression gets worse! and then I come back out of it once my menstral period is over) Should I start SAM-e along with my 5htp? I read in two different areas that SAM-e is recommended over 5htp?. (Natural doctors, Dr. Andrew Weil and Dr. Mercola)

What "cocktail" would you recommend that has worked for you? Thanks so much for your help. My background - I am a 43 year old female - part time worker - 2 daughters - husband.
Life is good but I suffer from depression! My father and brother are also sufferers. I have been on anti-depressants and they work! but we are self employed so our insurance goes out the roof with my depression history. They (the insurance company) rate me higher than my daughter who at three had leukemia! (She's considered cured now, thank god.) I guess they think I could be suicidal just because I am on anti-depressants? But I know I am not.... So that is why I am trying to find the natural way to cure my depression. So that my insurance can be affordable.
Any help would be appreciated! Thanks!


Regular Member
Hey there,

From what I understand, here is the chain of events of what is transformed into what:

tryptophan -> 5-HTP -> serotonin -> N-acetylserotonin -> melatonin.

Vitamin B6 is part of the transformation from 5-HTP into serotonin, and SAMe does the last step into melatonin. If you take both, you will have a much stronger effect. So I would feel like doing either one or the other, but not both, and take it in the evening. I would think that 5-HTP is better because it will also give you serotonin. That is at least what my doc said.

I am taking Rhodiola Rosea (Ameriden) in the morning. It makes me think clearly, be alert, and elevates my mood too. Except for occasional ups and downs that are however related to external events.

I will be adding amino acids soon. One of them is L-phenylalanin, which is transformed into PEA on the one hand, and dopamine, norepinephrine, epinephrine on the other hand. These are the neurotransmitters that will affect activity levels, motivation, cognitive functions. These I will take in the morning but still with some Rhodiola Rosea.

Make sure that you are getting enough Vitamin B3, Vitamin B5, Vitamin B6, Vitamin B12, Vitamin C. I am also taking Magnesium and Calcium as well as Omega3 fishoil (3000mg currently after slowly building up).

Also, read the thread about menopausal depression. There are some useful recommendations there. Chances are that what you are experiencing is perimenopausal (bordering menopause).

Good luck and good health!