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Ask Dr. Natasha Your Own Question

Dr. Natasha
Dr. Natasha, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 12910
Experience:  American Board Certified in Emergency Medicine, Ivy League trained
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If you take 5-htp .. Lets say 50mg or 100mg... how long do

Resolved Question:

If you take 5-htp .. Let's say 50mg or 100mg... how long do you need to wait before consuming a lot of alcahol? (let's say 10 pints of beer) And after consuming a lot of alcahol? I've found sources like this: "At least 6 hours should be allowed after taking 5 HTP before consuming alcohol."
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr. Natasha replied 3 years ago.

Dr. Natasha :

hello

Customer:

hi

Dr. Natasha :

there is no real issue with taking 5 HTP together with alcohol- you are not going to have a bad reaction

Dr. Natasha :

the issue is that alcohol will decrease the effects of 5 HTP

Customer:

really?! I heard about serotonin syndrome?

Dr. Natasha :

yes, but that is not from alcohol and 5htp!

Dr. Natasha :

that is from SSRIs and other medications interacting

Customer:

that is interesting

Customer:

Please see this: http://www.progressivehealth.com/using-5-hydroxytryptophan-and-alcohol.htm

Dr. Natasha :

I did see that

Dr. Natasha :

see 'progressivehealth.com'

Dr. Natasha :

that is not a legitimate site

Dr. Natasha :

I didn't come across any real journals with serotonin syndrome from 5htp and alcohol

Dr. Natasha :

did you?

Customer:

ive read it on various sites

Dr. Natasha :

Even the drug interaction checker found:

Dr. Natasha :








5-HTP (5-hydroxytryptophan)
Alcohol (contained in alcoholic beverages) (ethanol)
Dr. Natasha :

No results found - however, this does not necessarily mean no interactions exist. ALWAYS consult with your doctor or pharmacist.

Dr. Natasha :

It means that no one has reported anything

Dr. Natasha :

now seeing how common alcohol is and 5HTP there has BOUND to be MANY people who have taken the combination

Dr. Natasha :

but you need a proper journal

Dr. Natasha :

like J. clinical pharmacology

Dr. Natasha :

NIG

Dr. Natasha :

*NIH

Dr. Natasha :

etc

Dr. Natasha :

Not Livestrong or the progressive website

Dr. Natasha :

but it is totally up to you

Dr. Natasha :

I am just presenting the evidence

Dr. Natasha :

there is NO significant interaction and certainly NOTHING that causes serotonin syndrome

Dr. Natasha :

and I would know- I am an ER doc with toxicology training AND a drug medical review officer

Customer:

ok

Customer:

but dont ssri and 5-htp work the same?

Dr. Natasha :

no they don't

Dr. Natasha :

5 HTP is a supplement

Dr. Natasha :

SSRI actually work at the neurotransmitter junction

Customer:

and 5-htp works different?

Customer:

how much 5-htp do you recommend to take a day?

Dr. Natasha :

There is no recommendation for 5 HTP

Dr. Natasha :

If you want to take it, it depends on the formulation

Dr. Natasha :

but people take 100 to 300 mg 3 times daily

Customer:

ok

Customer:

I take 50mg per week at the moment

Dr. Natasha :

Here is the linK:

Dr. Natasha :

http://www.med.nyu.edu/content?ChunkIID=21399

Customer:

so you think its totally safe to have 5-htp with alcahol

Customer:

and that 5-htp is safe it self

Dr. Natasha :

no, I don't think that 5 HTP is totally safe

Customer:

ok

Dr. Natasha :

I am just telling you that 5 HTP and alcohol do not interact

Customer:

ok

Dr. Natasha :

it is a health supplement which is neither tested, regulated or endorsed by the FDA

Customer:

ok

Customer:

are there any alternatives that are better?

Dr. Natasha :

for depression, another supplement is st johns wort

Dr. Natasha :

but there is nothing totally safe

Customer:

I suffer from anxiety and depressio

Customer:

would it be safe to have 5-hpt with st john wart?

Dr. Natasha :

no, you don't take them together

Customer:

I might try st john wart, how long should i stop taking 5htp before taking st john wart?

Dr. Natasha :

3 weeks

Customer:

ok

Dr. Natasha :

I hope that I provided you with excellent service? :-)

Customer:

and st john wart can be taken with alcahol?

Customer:

yes

Dr. Natasha :

Using St. John's wort together with ethanol can increase nervous system side effects such as dizziness, drowsiness, and difficulty concentrating.

Customer:

so it's safe, but the effects might not be good?

Dr. Natasha :

No, it is NOT safe

Dr. Natasha :

You should avoid or limit the use of alcohol while being treated with St. John's wort.

Customer:

I guess my 50mg of 5-htp is a very lose dose? And better to have if i like alcahol?

Dr. Natasha :

if you don't want to have interactions, 5 HTP will not interact with alcohol

Customer:

ok

Dr. Natasha :

you are welcome ;-)

Customer:

thanks for chat

Dr. Natasha :

take care :-)

Dr. Natasha, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 12910
Experience: American Board Certified in Emergency Medicine, Ivy League trained
Dr. Natasha and 2 other Medical Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Dr. Natasha replied 3 years ago.
:-)

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