Lidkte is a leading supplier of premium L-Tryptophan and specialty supplements for sleep, stress, common depression, a relaxed mood, weight loss, healthy blood sugar, common joint and back pain, liver cleansing, and more.
At LIDTKE we literally search the world for premium raw materials that even surpass pharmaceutical standards. Such attention to detail is seldom available through mass production; hence, we are a specialty manufacturer, and we are happy to take time with our customers.
We always are looking for new ways to improve and respond to our customers’ needs, so if you have suggestions,
When we answer the phone, we are inviting friends and strangers, alike, into our home. We do not rush you out the door... so please feel at home to ask about our products and how we make them. We are proud of what we do, and we are here 7am to 5pm from Monday through Friday to help in any way we can.
The inventor of GlycoTrol®, Dr. Charles Jarowski, PhD, was the founding Director of Research and Development at Pfizer, Inc., and served in that distinguished position for over twenty years. From Pfizer, Dr. Jarowski accepted the position of professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences at St. John’s University and taught PhD students until his retirement.
Dr. Jarowski spent decades researching blood glucose and cholesterol and the mechanisms controlling them. Dr. Jarowski began his groundbreaking research by taking 60 high protein foods Americans commonly eat and identifying the essential amino acids most frequently lacking – tryptophan, methionine, valine, and lysine. By simply supplementing these four amino acids before a meal, he found that a higher percentage of protein tends to be utilized by the body, reducing waste products and helping to subdue the sugar roller coaster so common after meals.
This radio interview with Dr. Charles Jarowski originally was broadcast in Miami, Florida, and was sponsored by Tunies Natural Grocery and Vitamin Supercenter. The interviewer is Janet Simorelli, and the program is "Healthline."
Dr. Charles Jarowski: Good morning Janet. I’m so happy to be able to hear your voice and answer you.
Janet: Ok, well we’re looking forward to lots of good information for our listeners. Tell our listeners a little bit about your very distinguished career, your first career, because now you’re into a second career.
Dr. Charles Jarowski: Yes, I must say; fate is a really strange thing that happens to an individual. I went to a college of pharmacy to get a pharmacy degree, and while I was there, my dad, when he reached the age of 69, actually had one of his legs removed due to Type II Diabetes, and my sister Anna, when she reached the age of 69, had the same fate befall her.
So, I began to worry, even as a student in a pharmacy school, that maybe I would suffer the same fate. So, after I got my degree, one of the professors encouraged me to go for a doctorate degree, and I got a doctorate degree in pharmaceutical chemistry, and then here’s where fate entered in. There was an opening for a post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Illinois. When I accepted that fellowship and received my doctorate degree, I went out to Illinois, and they were doing research on establishing which of the 20+ amino acids were essential for health. That was work being done by a Professor Rose, and the graduate students who were doing this research would talk with me.
I was doing a structure proof at the time, but I learned an awful lot by taking courses as a post-doctorate fellow for two years. To make a long story short, I came up with this idea that if one would concentrate on nutrition based on the fasting blood levels of the essential amino acids, one could get some profoundly important results. And so, when I left Illinois and went to work in the drug industry, as fate would have it again, I was able to convince the people in Washington to allow one of our men from Pfizer, where I worked, to do some research on testing the idea. And it was that idea that led to the first patent in 1963.
Now here I am working for Pfizer. They’re interested in brand new drugs. They were not interested too much in making nutritional supplements, so as a result, I sort of studied this without a lot of fanfare; did careful research, and then many years later after I left Pfizer, I joined the faculty of St John’s University to be a professor. I stayed there until I retired in 1987, and when I retired I did full time research. This research led to three additional patents. The last patent was issued in December 2007. That’s my educational background and how I got interested in supplementation of amino acids, in order to avoid high blood sugar and so on.
Janet: It’s your personal family history that really initiated it, but over your career, fate, as you mentioned, has put you at the right place at the right time.
Dr. Charles Jarowski: Absolutely.
Janet: Now we have statistics telling us that 25% of the American population are either diagnosed as diabetics, have diabetes and don’t know it, or they’re pre-diabetic, and over a million new cases are diagnosed each year. What would you say are some of the causes of this epidemic in the American population, and, is it a crisis, is it a health crisis that we’re facing?
Dr. Charles Jarowski: Well, we have to look behind it. Americans, as you know, generally have a breakfast that’s prepared in a hurry. Many people, if they have to drive or catch a train to work at 7:00 am, may be riding in a car, and they’re munching on a Danish, a muffin, or some kind of an easy thing to eat, with a cup of coffee. They get out of the car, get on the train, finish their breakfast, and off to work they go. Now, almost all Americans who consume cereals, in one form or another, should realize that almost all cereals contain rather high concentrations of carbohydrate. So we get into this pattern of a breakfast which is loaded with carbohydrate, and what happens then? Our blood sugar surges upward.
When I did my research on myself, I used rice. When I use rice and heat it for 3 minutes or so in a microwave oven, my blood sugar goes up to 290! Now, my son is a doctor, and a very good doctor, an internist, and he told me,”Dad, you are a ripe individual to get Type II Diabetes. Look how high your blood sugar goes after a simple meal of rice, milk, and egg white.” And so as a result, when I began to do my research, I looked into the composition of the proteins that I was consuming, and I felt if I could make sure that I blended some amino acids that would make that protein more completely utilized, I would probably be able to lower my blood sugar.
So, I think most of Americans eat cereals containing sugar, and a lot of young people like sugar-coated cereals, and when we take a cup of coffee, a lot of people have to have one or two teaspoons full of sucrose. So, we’re into a habit of loading our body with high concentrations of carbohydrate.
Now interestingly enough, after the research went on for some time in my case, I was able to develop a blend of 4 amino acids that would make the food that I ate be more completely converted to desirable protein in my body and not have excess amino acids - that are actually currencies for our bodies. Young people, of course, eat even larger quantities of carbohydrate, are not worried about their blood sugar, and build up high concentrations of carbohydrate.
If you really want to know the effects on your body, though, you should measure your blood sugar after a simple meal. And, if you don’t mind pricking your finger and reading it with a glucose measuring device, you would know for yourself that a particular meal may not be very useful.
Clearly, obesity is a very big problem in America today. People keep saying we should go on diets, exercise more, and so on. But I think that when you look at a situation; here my dad, at age 69 lost a leg, my sister at age 69, and here I am 90 years old and still walking on two feet. And I think to myself that I wasn’t so brilliant to do that; I just actually took a look at the biochemical literature.
When you read through and find out what I learned by reading this material, that amino acids, if you eat a large meal - more than you should eat - your body doesn’t just urinate out the excess amino acids. Your body reabsorbs them, and as a result you have amino acids going back to the liver. If the liver cannot use the aminos that are in excess, you will convert them to carbohydrate like glucose, and what happens is people gain weight, they damage their system by having these molecules flowing through their blood circulation.
Janet: I think it probably is an eye-opening statement for a lot of our listeners to hear that the components of protein, the amino acids, if they are not properly metabolized and utilized in the body, this excess of amino acids actually is converted into sugars, different forms of sugars. Because over the years, people have been told that if they reduce their carbs, particularly the simple carbs in their diet, and they eat a higher protein diet, then their risk of destabilizing their blood-sugar chemistry is reduced. What you’re saying, if we eat too much, if it is a large meal, even if it’s a high protein meal and does not contain the simple carbohydrates, it is still possible that you can elevate your blood sugar.
Dr. Charles Jarowski: That’s correct Janet, that’s correct.
Janet: You mentioned measuring your blood sugar after a simple meal. What might be a level that would be in a danger area; what might be an acceptable blood sugar level after a simple meal, and how long after the meal should you wait to measure your blood sugar?
Dr. Charles Jarowski: Well, you know, I always tell people – especially when I’m giving a lecture before a group of people - you don’t have to believe the biochemistry. Everything is true, but you can prove it to yourself very simply. For example, if I eat a breakfast on Monday, on Tuesday I have the same breakfast and take one capsule before I eat. Then, I measure my blood sugar each day 10 minutes after I’ve finished my breakfast. If I don’t see a dramatic change, then either one of two things; either my breakfast was low in carbohydrate, or I actually have a very active pancreas that makes enough insulin.
In my case, I take rice, milk, and egg white, heat that together and have it for breakfast. 10 minutes after this breakfast, I measure my blood sugar without supplementation. Without GlycoTrol, my blood sugar reaches 290. Now if you talk to people who are experts in the Diabetic Society, they say keep your blood sugars below 160. Another group, endocrinologists in our country, say we should keep our peak blood glucose under 140.
As I said before, here’s the thing that’s so sad, that people do not realize. The body does not just urinate out excess amino acids. It is true that if you eat a protein meal, with no carbohydrate in that meal: eggs, bacon, whatever, things like that, you will now get very low elevation of blood sugar in the body after 10 minutes of consumption of that meal. However, if you eat a lot of that type of protein, what happens is your body does not utilize all of it. It is slowly converted to carbohydrate in the body enzymatically.
Now the bad thing about using protein meals to reduce blood-sugar is that if you eat a lot of protein, what happens is the nitrogen-containing amino groups are converted to byproducts, and these by products can be very bad and very toxic if your kidneys do not function properly. You end up with high levels of urea and ammonia and uric acid.
Now the point I want to make is this: many people that I’ve talked to - who have gone on these high protein diets - tell me that urination was very painful. There was a burning sensation when one urinated because of these byproducts coming out in very high concentrations. So, my conclusion is, eat intelligently, but use the supplement before your meal.
The thing about this now, Janet, that is so interesting is that amino acids by themselves will stimulate the pancreas to make insulin. If your insulin is being produced satisfactorily, and you want to stimulate your pancreas to secrete more insulin, amino acids will do it.
However, when you use the four essential amino acids that are lacking in the typical protein meals that we eat in our country, what happens is not only do you stimulate the pancreas, but you also more completely convert the protein that is in your meal to desirable products in the body like albumin, and gamma globulin and so on.
Janet: Um, very, very important information for our listeners, Dr.Jarowski, and what we’re going to do is take a short break right now on Healthline, and when we come back, we will discuss those four very, very important amino acids that are found in Lidtke GlycoTrol and find out how we can go about very, very successfully balancing blood sugar chemistry. To our listeners, you’re tuned to Healthline. I’m Janet Simorelli. I’m here with Dr. Charles Jarowski, and he is the formulator of the product we’re talking about, GlycoTrol, for the maintenance of healthy blood glucose, cholesterol, BUN, and triglycerides.* We’ll be right back after these messages.
*Already within a normal range
Janet: Just before the break, we were talking about the amino acid component in GlycoTrol. Dr. Jarowski, tell us a little bit about those four amino acids and why they are in this formula.
Dr. Charles Jarowski: To take one example, tryptophan is limiting in many of the proteins that we eat, and tryptophan is a very important amino acid in order to make more of the protein you consume be utilized properly, so you don’t have a lot of amino acids left over that can’t be made into albumin and gamma globulin, for example. Those proteins both contain tryptophan.
And if you don’t have enough tryptophan in your diet, if you’re eating a protein like a piece of pork or beef or whatever, or fish, you find out that you will be short of tryptophan as the limiting amino acid, it would be nice if you had a little more present in the form of a GlycoTrol capsule.
Now, when you add more tryptophan, you make protein better, more valuable, a more completely utilized protein. Now, after you satisfy the tryptophan requirement, if you look at the rest of the composition of the protein and the fasting blood, you say, it would be nice to make that even better still by adding some lysine, another amino acid. And, indeed, you will find that to be the case. When we did our research at the National Institute of Health, way back in 1963, in that era, we actually showed that we could get much better growth of laboratory rats by having amino acids that would make that protein better balanced. So, the grouping of lysine, tryptophan, valine, and methionine, was developed by making the protein more completely balanced, more completely utilized, and as a result we used that in our GlycoTrol formula.
Our approach was to analyze 60 proteins that are commonly consumed, the vegetable protein, animal protein, eggs, milk, things like that that are actually in our daily diet in America, and we found out that when we looked at the composition of these proteins, these four amino acids would improve the protein that we’ve consumed. In other words, after consuming a meal, you find out the urea level is lower, and you find out the blood sugar’s under control if you use the supplement.
What I want to emphasize is that my wife and family and I, and now my grandchildren, have been using GlycoTrol for over 20 years. We have never had any side effects; we never had any upset stomachs, and our blood chemistry is in excellent health.
On the other hand, Janet, if I stop taking this supplement before each meal, what happens is my triglycerides will go up. With the same type of meal, my triglycerides will go up to about 240mg %. And if I go back on supplementing, my triglycerides drop down to 110. If I stop taking the supplement for a month, and measure my cholesterol levels, they go up to about 180mg %. When I go back on the supplementation, they go back to 122.
I strongly believe, not only in the effectiveness of the supplement, but in the safety as well. All the 7 ingredients, 3 vitamins and the 4 amino acids, are in your body all of the time, even without eating breakfast. Analyze your blood, and you will find these 7 ingredients there.
Janet: It’s very interesting because in your newsletter, it talks about these four amino acids, when they’re present in sufficient numbers, sufficient amounts, then the possibility of the excess amino acids being converted into sugar and changing your blood sugar level is significantly reduced. What role do the combination of Vitamins B6, B12, and folic acid play?
Dr. Charles Jarowski: They’re important, and the reason I included them in my research was that I knew there was a great interest in methionine possibly converting to homocysteine. Actually, more recent literature says that methionine may not be a risk factor, but the use of the vitamins is not a bad idea because they are very useful in protein synthesis, anyway.
Janet: Now, it’s true that GlycoTrol is very, very easy to take.
Janet: Now I’m really getting so much out of this discussion with you Dr Jarowski, and I’m looking forward to the response from those individuals out there that I know have had a great deal of difficulty in balancing blood sugar chemistry, despite having very great focus on their quality diet, despite using the substances that they’ve been educated about from the natural realm that are meant to balance blood sugar chemistry. Talking about those people who have been diagnosed as diabetic and using medication, are they able to use the GlycoTrol in addition to their medication?
Dr. Charles Jarowski: Now, the way I look at it is this: when friends of mine, and people that I meet when I go to give a seminar, ask me the very question that you raise Janet, I tell them that since I do not take any drugs at all, there would be no way for me to give personal experience, but I do know a few cousins of mine that have used GlycoTrol in addition to drugs, and it hasn’t hurt them at all. I told them that they could try leaving out the drugs and see what happens over a 2 or 3 day period, and a few of my cousins that tried that actually stopped taking the drugs because they found that GlycoTrol and diet helped them maintain their blood sugar level.
Usually, the peak level occurs right after a meal. When the body has not consumed any food at all, the blood sugar stays at a rather lower level. Now when you eat a meal that is not a proper meal for you, and you don’t have protection against the surging blood sugar, then you will have high levels that last for a few hours.
You may think, “Well, it’s going to come down; why be concerned about it?” One of the things that is being overlooked, though, is if you have a high concentration for two or three hours, the glucose molecules have a tendency to react with hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is in the red blood cells flowing through your body, and glucose actually interacts with the hemoglobin. The result is a compound called hemoglobin A1C. What happens is those molecules are stable in the body about 4 months! They’re not useful to have around because they’re now bigger molecules attached to glucose, and they flow around in your body, and they damage your kidneys, they damage your eyes, and as a result people should be concerned if their blood sugar is high for too long a period.
As a matter of fact, like I mentioned earlier, it’s not good to even get over 140, say the endocrinologists, and it shouldn’t get over 160 says the American Diabetic Association, because they’re worried about hemoglobin A1C.
Now, one last thing Janet, if you’re cheating on your doctor, and you’re now eating sweets, and you go back to the doctor and he’s checking you, and he says, “Janet, I can tell you haven’t been following my recommendation of cutting back on carbohydrates.” And you say, “How do you know that? For the last two days, protein is all I’ve had.” He says, “Yes, but you were really hurting yourself by eating a lot of carbohydrate a few weeks ago because these things that form in your body stay around for 4 months before they get completely destroyed by the body enzymes.”
So, high blood-sugar is a bad thing to have for long periods of time. If you don’t eat, your blood-sugar drops because your body uses it - like we use gasoline for a car - as the body’s energy. But if you now are taking too much, then you cause these side reactions to occur, and as a result, you can only in time find that you have hurt your eyes and your kidneys and your liver. So, to answer your question, high blood-sugar should be under control. Diet-wise, you should be worried about it.
One thing I didn’t mention to you before is something I found interesting both in my case and my wife’s case. She wanted to join me when I did some of this research about 20 years ago, 15 years ago. So, we decided that since we were going to use a capsule before each meal, before breakfast, before lunch, and before dinner, we would not eat between meals. We thought it would be stupid to use high carbohydrate containing meals if we were trying to keep our levels under control. So, following that dietary regimen, no snacking, eating carefully and not between meals, we lost weight. I lost 35 pounds. And interestingly enough, you’ll get a kick out of this; I went from 185 down to 155, which was my weigh when I got married 63 years ago.
Al Foreman: God bless you.
Janet: Happy Day!
Dr. Charles Jarowski: And it has stayed at that level, even with Thanksgiving, having a lot of turkey, my weight may go up 1 or 2 pounds, but then I check myself after I go on my normal regimen. It’s 155, 154, 156. It stays in that area.
Janet: Sounds fantastic!
Al Foreman: Think about one question Dr. Jarowski. What effect does GlycoTrol have on low blood sugar?
Janet: Al, just before the break, you were asking about those people with low blood sugar. Are they able to help balance blood sugar levels with GlycoTrol? Dr. Jarowski, what do you have to say about that?
Dr. Charles Jarowski: I would simply say this: only one person that I’ve met, a friend of mine, had a daughter who suffered from low blood sugar. In my own judgment, it may not be any use at all for those people because it will stimulate the pancreas to make more insulin, and if you now are going to be making more insulin, you control blood sugar. It would seem to me it could actually make the condition worse for that person if they have very low blood sugar. Very low blood sugar would mean that they usually have low energy, but I have very little experience with it.
As we all know, people with low blood sugar actually lose their coordination. They kind of walk wobbly, almost as if they’re inebriated. And if someone overdoses themselves with insulin, maybe forgets they already took a shot, and takes another injection of insulin, you can’t tell the difference between him being over-intoxicated with alcohol or blood sugar. They stagger as if they’re inebriated. So I can only say (this is a long-winded way to answer you) that I don’t know if it would be useful, and I would imagine it would have to be very carefully done in order to be sure you weren’t hurting somebody, making it even worse.
Janet: What about someone who has a family history of diabetes, but so far their blood sugar testing shows them to be in the normal range, should they begin to use GlycoTrol?
Dr. Charles Jarowski: I think it has a multiple usage. Not only will it help them maintain normal levels of glucose in their body, but they also will get better utilization and conversion of their protein intake into useful protein in the body. What people may not realize, but what animal studies have shown, is that if you take a dog, for example, and feed him food containing a radioactive carbon in, say glycine, which is a non-essential amino acid, or maybe even in valine, an essential amino acid, that dog will manufacture cholesterol with a radioactive carbon in it. That would mean that by feeding an animal imbalanced amino acids in the form of protein, you can produce cholesterol, you can produce triglycerides, you can convert the amino acids to glucose. It’s an amazing thing! So, the body has a wonderful factory, but it’s so versatile, that if it has extra building blocks flowing around through the body, it can convert them to highly desirable complicated protein structures, and also take these products and convert them to undesirable metabolites as byproducts of enzymatic breakdown.
Janet: After people begin using GlycoTrol, what should they look for? What should they monitor?
Dr. Charles Jarowski: Well, if I were making a recommendation to start out, let them simply measure their blood sugar after the same meal, two days in a row, using GlycoTrol a few minutes before one of those meals. I personally try to do it after 10 minutes because it peaks very rapidly if I have a rapidly absorbed meal, like heated rice meal.
It would seem a good idea to check it 10 minutes after a meal, ½ an hour, an hour, and see what happens. If they see that they’re in good shape and that the GlycoTrol is benefitting them, well they can say it’s not deleterious to their health. All I can tell you is that intelligent eating has to accompany this. If you’re eating a massive amount of carbohydrate, it’s very tough for the body to control that. Someone I’m sure wouldn’t do that.
Janet: And we are almost out of time. I want to let our listeners know, that if they’d like to speak to someone at Lidtke Technologies, they can call toll free, 800-404-8185. Dr. Jarowski, thank you so much for joining us. It has been absolutely a world of very high quality information for all those people suffering with unstable and elevated blood sugar. Thanks for joining us.
Dr. Charles Jarowski: Thank you, and you’re welcome!
Janet: And to all of our listeners, thanks so much for tuning in. Remember Healthline is here every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday 11-12noon. Thanks for tuning in. Bye bye everyone.
Dr. Charles Jarowski: Bye now.
“By now we have all [hopefully] heard of antioxidants, how we NEED antioxidants for health, a...”
“Are you sleeping enough to keep thin? It is an interesting concept as most Americans do NOT ...”
“All of my friends/family are aware that I don’t eat gluten. Many of them also find it tediou...”
“Are you getting your children more EMF for Christmas?!? You may want to consider this… I kno...”
““Why don’t amino acids always work the way they claim?” It’s a good question that has confused nutritionists for decades, and it can appl...”
“L-Tryptophan is the essential amino acid from which your body produces 5-HTP, Serotonin and Melatonin and a wide array of structural prot...”
“Dr. Charles Jarowski, Ph.D. was the first Director of Research and Development at Pfizer Inc. and became renowned over the next twenty ye...”
“The computer image below of the Pacific Ocean produced by a team of oceanographers at the GEOMAR Centre in Germany, shows the estimated s...”
In Depth Interviews by Morton Walker, DPM
Tryptophan possesses a remarkable array of applications for maintaining good health. This can be traced to the fact that Tryptophan is an essential amino acid that is necessary for life and growth, so it cannot be replaced by any vitamin, mineral, herb, or prescription chemical, and it cannot be made by your own body.
As a nutritional supplement, Tryptophan does not treat or cure or prevent any disease, but any essential nutrient, such as water, has such a broad range of activity that deficiencies often are miss-diagnosed in a multitude of ways. Hence, the need for education.
Tryptophan is best known for its efficient relief of serotonin deficiency symptoms, such as common depression, common anxiety, irritable bowels, inflammation of the colon, hormonal imbalances, particularly estrogen/progesterone imbalances, premenstrual symptoms, unhealthy cravings for alcohol and carbohydrates, plus other common mental and emotional difficulties. This amino acid’s effectiveness for insomnia symptoms is quite high as well.
“I am personally using Tryptophan to relieve my insomnia, which for over two decades has been a source of health difficulty for me,” says Abram Ber, MD, of Scottsdale, Arizona.
“Tens of millions of Americans suffer from insomnia today, which was not the case when I began medical practice 25 years ago. It’s no longer just a problem of elderly people but does present itself in all age groups, most likely resulting from rising elec-tromagnetic pollution, coupled with heavy metal poisoning [and the consumption of popular artificial sweeteners containing L-phenylalanine, a strong antagonist of L-Tryptophan].”
“Electromagnetic toxicity is getting worse because of cellular telephone towers, wireless telephones, TV satellite dishes, and other electronic devices of convenience. It’s a major epidemic in which people are unable to fall asleep or stay asleep; I call their condition “malignant insomnia.”
“L-Tryptophan is a primary nutritional support for my patients with malignant insomnia. The most effective brand of this amino acid is the product manufactured by Lidtke Technologies. I’ve witnessed absolutely no adverse effects from use of it. Of all the items I’ve dispensed for the nutritional treatment of insomnia, including melatonin, calcium, magnesium, herbs such as valerian, only the Lidtke Tryptophan seems to work well because of its carefully controlled quality.”
“Melatonin fails to be a major player for relief of insomnia because of its variable side effects such as nightmares and a lingering grogginess after some fitful sleep,” continues Dr. Ber.
“The electrodermal testing I perform routinely indicates that of the 15 different components used by me against this sleep disorder, Tryptophan turns out a winner nearly every time. This food supplement brings about benefits for a minimum of one in three patients to whom I dispense it. While a 33.33% statistic of success may seem unimpressive, my wish is to avoid the several adverse side effects from prescribing sleep-producing drugs.”
“Most insomniacs need to take two capsules of 500 mg Tryptophan just before retiring. The 1000 mg-dosage works, and any higher dosage does not seem to produce any better sleep results,” states Dr. Ber.
“This is the evening amount I take myself. I have dozens of patients who purchase Tryptophan from my dispensary. Moreover, patients sometimes combine L-Tryptophan in a kind of synergistic ‘cocktail’ with melatonin, magnesium, or some other sleep–inducing nutrient.”
A series of published clinical journal articles beginning in 1974 pointed out that the extent of sleep latency (length of time to fall asleep) could be significantly reduced by taking as little as 1000 mg of Tryptophan per day. Nine experiments conducted at the Sleep and Dream Laboratory in Boston showed that insomnia is eliminated when blood plasma levels are elevated by Tryptophan nutritional supplementation. Unlike hypnotics, this amino acid produces no distortions in sleep physiology either when it’s first administered or on long-term administration or after withdrawal. Tryptophan supports sleep best when accompanied by small doses of niacinamide (the amide of vitamin B3) and pyridoxyl 5-phosphate (vitamin B6). They tend to increase the incidence of REM or dream sleep. In fact, both Tryptophan and niacinamide metabolism are metabolically dependent on pyridoxal 5-phosphate.
Tryptophan metabolism involves a hydro-
xylase enzyme which also starts the conversion of tyrosine, phenylalanine, and the other amino acids to neurotransmitters. Dietary intake of Tryptophan directly influences the amount of serotonin in the plasma, brain and throughout the entire body so that neurotransmission more readily takes place.
Low dose melatonin ranging from 0.5 mg to 1 mg combined with Tryptophan taken at 500 mg to 1500 mg is known to be effective for providing relief for those with common insomnia.
The administrator of natural medicine at the Anew Skin & Wellness Center in Brookfield, Wisconsin, Carol Van Zelst, PhD, MS, FD (Functional Diagnostic Medicine), recounts how her patients benefit from taking Tryptophan for their common mental/emotional problems.
“For three years I have been using Tryptophan as a support for increasing levels of serotonin in disorders of the mind and emotions. This nutrient is useful for helping a patient overcome various illnesses connected to serotonin deficiency syndrome, such as mood swings, obsessive thoughts, insomnia, mood suppression, and nutritional deficiencies to the gut,” states Dr. Van Zelst.
“For instance, I was visited by a 28-year old woman, a music teacher, who before she consulted me had attempted suicide five times. I did specific testing of the patient’s urine, stools, and saliva to exactly determine which nutrients she was deficient in,” Dr. Van Zelst explains.
“From amino acid testing of her urine I discovered that the music teacher’s level of Tryptophan was almost nonexistent. Then, in reviewing her medications, as reported by the attending physician, I learned that this young woman had been prescribed lithium.
Now it has been well established that lithium prescribed in the presence of physiologically absent L-Tryptophan tends to increase one’s tendency to commit suicide.”
“For the patient’s safety, I did tell her about the danger she was in; thereafter, her lithium dosage was eliminated and with other nutrients, 1000 mg of L-Tryptophan was prescribed to her,” affirms Dr. Van Zelst.
“Within three weeks this woman improved remarkably. She returned to working full time, performed well in a functioning job with the local symphony orchestra, found a boyfriend, and has remained productive, happy and healthy for over two years.
“Working with Tryptophan as a main support has been a golden pursuit for me,” Dr. Van Zelst says.
“While employing Tryptophan supplementation, I recommend taking niacin, pyridoxal 5-phosphate, and glutamine to develop the patient’s normal physiological metabolism of L-Tryptophan. It’s standard procedure for me, and I see excellent responses from patients right away. Any symptoms of serotonin deficiency syndrome usually are overcome this way.”
“Also, Tryptophan with taurine and tyrosine in combination has been a godsend for helping relieve Parkinson’s symptoms. Taking Tryptophan, patients affected by neurological tremors often experience nearly total elimination of their tremors. Such results have me completely enthusiastic about the use of this amino acid,” says Dr. Carol Van Zelst.
“I have never experienced a single negative side effect from Tryptophan by any patient. For that health professional who wants to help his or her patient, this is the number one product to use.”
Being one of the most common and widespread disorders of human psychobiology in Western industrialized countries, Serotonin Deficiency Syn-
drome (SDS) manifests as a broad array of emotional and behavioral problems. Such problems include common depression, common anxiety, sleep disturbances obsessive compulsive actions, fear, anger, over-arousal, violence, aggression, and the inclination to commit suicide as occurred with Dr. Van Zelst’s patient. A chronic deficit of serotonin in the nerves that use it as their neurotransmitter is the root.
Dysfunctional Tryptophan metabolism or Tryptophan deficiency are the primary sources of SDS. Of all the 22 amino acids, Tryptophan is one of the eight essentials that must be obtained from food or nutritional supplements. Furthermore, Tryptophan is the essential amino acid that is most lacking in the American diet.
A person’s usual diet of animal or vegetable-based protein provides an average of just 1.25 gm per day of this essential amino acid not quite enough for many individuals suffering from sleep or mood disorders. It is the least plentiful of all 22 amino acids.
Taking Tryptophan as a nutritional supplement, it seems clear, is the most natural and effective means of increasing the brain’s serotonin production.
After the tragedy of contaminated Tryptophan brought on by Showa Denko K.K. in 1989, it was believed that another precursor for serotonin might be a viable substitute for Tryptophan. The health professional community and nutrient distributors who had supplied Tryptophan temporarily turned to 5-Hyroxy Tryptophan (5-HTP) as the alternative supplement. In fact, 5-HTP has been effective supplementation for some, but according to Joan Matthews Larson, Ph.D., author of the book, Depression Free Naturally, 5-HTP has been somewhat troubling as a nutritional supplement. Because it bypasses the body’s feedback control mechanisms, some think 5-HTP may put patient’s at risk for the same heart-valve problems caused by the pharmaceutical diet drug, Fen-Phen.
As with 5-HTP, Fen-Phen also promotes uncontrolled creation of serotonin. Tryptophan, unlike 5-HTP, is an essential amino acid, which the body also uses to create proteins, vitamins (niacin), and enzymes. Tryptophan can be readily converted to 5-HTP as needed, but 5-HTP, on the other hand, cannot replace Tryptophan. Since research has shown that 5-HTP is poorly absorbed across the blood-brain barrier in patients who have ever had major depression (See Diagram 1) these individuals would more likely respond to treatment with Tryptophan than to 5-HTP.
Uncontrolled or excess serotonin levels can also be a factor in an illness related to the overabundance of serotonin, known as Serotonin Syndrome (SS). Though serotonin syndrome can occur with any substance that manipulates serotonin levels, the greatest risk for SS occurs in patients taking Mono-Amine Oxidase (MAO) inhibitors, which produce an antidepressant effect.
Thus MAO inhibitors should be strictly avoided in combination with any prescription or natural therapy such as Tryptophan. To reduce the risk of SS, other natural or pharmaceutical antidepressants should only be combined with the approval and close supervision of the patient’s health-care provider.
The lead author of Healing Nutrients Within, Eric Braverman, M.D., is Medical Director of the Place for Achieving Total Health (PATH) Medical Inc., located in New York City. Dr. Braverman uses L-Tryptophan supplements for relieving serotonin deficiency syndrome and Tryptophan depletion.
“Whenever I might employ a serotonergic drug, my preferred product of choice is to substitute the nutrient, L-Tryptophan,” says Dr. Braverman. “And I succeed with the patient as indicated by blood level tests for Tryptophan. If I find an imbalance from mapping a person’s brain and do observe that the workings of its left and right sides are uncoordinated, a Tryptophan deficiency becomes recognizable as the issue. Therefore, my prescribing a serotonergic drug becomes unnecessary.”
(Please note: See Diagram 2 which shows that serotonergic drugs decrease serotonin levels in the brain over time and cause this neurotransmitter’s receptors to atrophy. In contrast, Tryptophan increases serotonin levels and enhances the number of serotonin receptors.)
As Medical Director of the Stockton Family Practice in Stockton, New Jersey, Stuart Freedenfeld, M.D., says, “For relieving common depression, common anxiety syndrome, serotonin deficiency, irritable bowel syndrome, and muscle pain, I use quite a bit of the Lidtke L-Tryptophan. I see excellent results from it.
“I generally start dosing at 1500 mg daily and go up to 3 grams a day or even higher. Since it is costly because of Lidtke’s high standards of quality, I try to keep the dosage down out of con-sideration for my patient’s pocketbook. And the reduced dose seems to do as good a job as the more elevated dosage.”
“My preference is to dispense L-Tryptophan, not for insomnia alone, but only when this condition is associated with common anxiety, depression, or some other mental dysfunction,” says Dr. Freedenfeld.
“Because there is more serotonin made in the gastrointestinal tract than in the brain, my observation is that irritable bowel syndrome responds very well to Tryptophan. It calms down the anxious and irritable bowel.”
“After visiting lots of other doctors, a 55-year-old male patient consulted me. He reported numbers of symptoms, such as loss of libido, nightmares, and a sense of being drugged from taking prescribed SSRI’s,” Dr. Freedenfeld says.
“Subsequently, my substituting Tryptophan for the patient returned him to once again feeling like his old self. My patient’s symptoms were eliminated by his taking Tryptophan instead of a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor.”
Naturopathic physicians, Alan Christianson, Ph.D., N.D., Medical Director of Integrative Health Care in Scottsdale, Arizona and Pat Hallman, N.M.D., describe their success in using Tryptophan support with their patients.
Dr. Alan Christianson states: “Because it is exceedingly helpful for starch cravings, insomnia, common anxiety, and common depression, and for those patients with markers indicating low Tryptophan levels, I prescribe Tryptophan. My patient, Alice P., age 16, had suffered with bulimia symptoms and took lots of different antidepressants as treatment. Nothing helped. I performed an
amino acid test and followed up with a separate dosing using L-Tryptophan. Four months later she exhibited a remarkable improvement. The young woman’s food binges had reduced substantially and weight was stabilized at normal for her. Such good results make it very enjoyable to utilize Tryptophan in this manner.”
Dr. Pat Hallman confirms: “Tryptophan is the precursor for serotonin, a shortage of which leads to a variety of neurotransmitter deficit disorders including symptoms of depression, insomnia, anxiety, aggression, and a lack of satiety or ‘fullness’ in over-eating disorders.”
“SSRI drugs, on the other hand, force serotonin to remain in contact with its neural receptor. Over time, receptors decrease and SSRI’s can cease to be effective. In contrast, Tryptophan brings about an increase in serotonin recirculation. It’s enjoyable to see this happen, for the patient then thrives over time.
“Many of my patients need relief from the side effects of various medications, which include anxiety, fatigue, and even seizures,” Dr. Hallman continues.
“Food avoidance is a problem with taking SSRI’s, and food cravings are troublesome with the tricyclics. Some also complain that medications that once helped no longer work. An effective dietary support for mood disorders includes Tryptophan with pyridoxal 5-phosphate, an active form of vitamin B6; niacin, and in some patients, melatonin. A few patients have commented: ‘Tryptophan doesn’t fatigue you,’ ‘Never any side effects occur,’ and ‘It worked so well, I bought some for my neighbor.’”
“I usually recommend that patients with insomnia symptoms start with one capsule an hour before bed and increase the dose if needed. This works well for most patients, but some have to experiment with other amounts and time of day. A computer programmer, for example, who drinks tea to keep alert during his late-hour shift found that swishing the L-Tryptophan powder in his mouth helped him fall asleep more
quickly,” says Dr. Pat Hallman in his concluding remarks. “One patient’s wife spent a year trying different drugs for sleep without success. She finally agreed to try Tryptophan and by the fourth night was, ‘sleeping better than I have in years.’”
California naturopath, Elisa S. Lottor, Ph.D., N.D, conducts her nutrition practice at Pacifica Women’s Health Care in Los Angeles. Dr. Lottor, author of Female and Forgetful, published in 2001 by Warner Books, describes the success she experiences from using L-Tryptophan for a variety of patient’s health difficulties.
She states: “I do feel excitement using L-Tryptophan for patients with eating problems, both diminished appetite and excessive appetite, plus digestive problems including common GI problems like acid reflux and gastric ulcers. Tryptophan really works well for these conditions.
“A note just arrived from one of my eating disorder patients who is highly compulsive about watching her weight, which has been rising steadily. I put her on Tryptophan, and the woman wrote that she loves what I’ve done to help her lower and maintain her weight,” says Dr. Elisa Lotter. ● ●
Pat Hallman, NMD, recommends that physicians “Avoid benzodiazepines. In all the years I have been personally using and prescribing natural therapies as an alternative to prescription medicines, I have heard many complaints and concerns about the side effects and withdrawal challenges of pharmaceuticals. By far the greatest outcry has been regarding the addictiveness of benzodiazepines.
While these drugs are effective in quickly relieving anxiety, the rebound that follows as patients attempt to stop using them has been described as horrendous. Many patients struggle for years, decreasing their dosages by tiny fractions per week in order to wean themselves off. Some simply give up and resign themselves to a lifetime of “benzo” addiction.
While many are helped by natural therapies in their effort to recover from prescription drug addictions, the best advice I can give is to avoid them in the first place by using natural therapies, when possible.”
1. Hartman, E. L-Tryptopohan: A rational hypnotic with clinical potential. American Journal of Psychiatry 134:4, April 1977.
2. Hartman, E. Tryptophan as an hypnotic agent: a review. Waking and Sleeping 1:155-161, 1977.
3. Hartman, E. and Spinweber, C.L. Sleep induced by Tryptophan: effect of dosages within the normal dietary intake. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease 167(8)d, 1979.
4. Wurtman, R.J.; Hefti, F.; Melamed, E. Precursor control of neurotransmitter synthesis. Pharmacological Reviews 32(4):315-330, 1981.
5. South, J. L-Tryptophan: nature’s answer to Prozac. International Antiaging Systems, 2002, p.6
6. Ibid, p.2.
7. Herrera R, Manjarrez G, Nishimura E, Hernandez J. Serotonin-related tryptophan in children with insulin- dependent diabetes. Pediatric Neurology 2003 Jan;176:72-5
8. Smith KA, Williams C, Cowen PJ,
Impaired regulation of brain serotonin function during dieting in women recovered from depression. British Journal of Psychiatry 2000 Jan;176:72-5
9. Maes M, etal. Serotonin-immune interactions in major depression: lower serum tryptophan as a marker of an immune-inflammatory response. European Archives of Psychiatry & Clinical Neuroscience 1997;247(3): 154- 61.
10. Agren H, etal. Low brain ujptake of L-[11C] 5-hydroxytryptophan in major depression: a positron emission tomography study on patients and healthy volunteers.; Acta Psychiatr Scand 1991 Jun;83(6):449-55
11. Braverman, E. Healing Nutrients Within, Third Edition (New York City: Basic Books, 2003).
12. Cubero, Javier, Belen Chanclón, Soledad Sánchez, Montserrat Rivero, Ana Beatriz Rodríguez, and Carmen Barriga. "Improving the Quality of Infant Sleep through the Inclusion at Supper of Cereals Enriched with Tryptophan, Adenosine-5′-phosphate, and Uridine-5′-phosphate." Nutritional Neuroscience 12.6 (2009): 272-80.
13. Hayaishi, O. "Tryptophan, Oxygen, and Sleep." Annual Review of Biochemistry 63.1 (1994): 1-23.
14. Hudson, Craig, Susan Patricia Hudson, Tracy Hecht, and Joan Mackenzie. "Protein Source Tryptophan versus Pharmaceutical Grade Tryptophan as an Efficacious Treatment for Chronic Insomnia." Nutritional Neuroscience 8.2 (2005): 121-27.
15. Hussey, H. H. "Sleep Inducement by L-Tryptophan." JAMA: The Journal of the American Medical Association 229.11 (1974): 1474-475.
16. Pagoto, Sherry L., Bonnie Spring, Dennis Mcchargue, Brian Hitsman, Malaina Smith, Bradley Appelhans, and Donald Hedeker. "Acute Tryptophan Depletion and Sweet Food Consumption by Overweight Adults." Eating Behaviors 10.1 (2009): 36-41.
17. Silber, B.y., and J.a.j. Schmitt. "Effects of Tryptophan Loading on Human Cognition, Mood, and Sleep." Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews 34.3 (2010): 387-407.
At Lidtke, we manufacture nutritional supplements that are kind to your body and your soul – using only the richest, cleanest natural ingredients that we test ourselves for impurities.
In everything we do, we strive to restore life and health, and we value and honor those who share our philosophy.
Our mission is to educate, enlighten, and share our knowledge base with everyone in our community, and we encourage all of our customers to do the same.
Many dream about making the planet a better place – only a determined few dedicate their lives to actually making it happen.
When it comes to nutritional supplements, there are hundreds of details that must be controlled to attain the highest quality, and as a manufacturer you truly have to believe in your work to spend decades refining the procedures and identifying the best suppliers needed to achieve such high goals.
We, at Lidtke, are a specialty manufacturer and in order to live up to our philosophy, we take the time to understand each ingredient so that we can discern small but important differences in quality.
As worldwide levels of radioactive nuclides, heavy metals, solvents, pesticides, herbicides and GMO ingredients continue to increase, the challenge to live a healthy life, we believe, becomes a worthwhile priority.
Be well in mind, body, and spirit!
At Lidtke we are concerned about contaminants, the kind of organic and inorganic chemical contaminants, including solvents, fumigants, and heavy metals, that you may find in foods or supplements.
A few of the chemicals identified include acetone, toluene, hexane, ether, 1,2-dichloroethane, ethyl acetate, isopropyl alcohol, and ethylene oxide. These chemicals may, unknown to the bottler or consumer, be used in manufacturing processes.
Generally, nutritional ingredients are tested only for a few contaminants, and the other, untested toxic solvents, fumigants, pesticides and herbicides can be hundreds of times higher than safety standards.
The average consumer, in fact, would be surprised how often such solvents and other chemicals are used in the manufacture of “natural” products. Toxic residues such as these are more commonly found in low-cost nutrients because manufacturers can dramatically reduce their expenses by leaving out critical purification steps. Sorry to say, such residues seldom can be detected by consumers, and their illnesses, years in the future, may never be diagnosed.
These are the reasons why we believe it is important to work with respected suppliers of ingredients and raw materials – those who share our commitment to purity and safety. Please feel free to mail us your suggestions!