Is l tyrosine a stimulant

Is L-tyrosine the New Adderall for ADHD?

While evidence-based meds may be the go-to for some, a natural supplement is causing a stir in the ADHD community.

Whether you’ve heard about it on TikTok or spotted it in a Reddit thread, you might be wondering about the benefits of L-tyrosine for symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

It may pique your interest if you’re familiar with the benefits of prescription medication for some symptoms, but you know this may come with drawbacks as well.

The myth of a “natural Adderall” may be tempting, but there’s more you need to know about this misconception. This is what the research says so far.

L-tyrosine is one type of tyrosine, 1 of 20 nonessential amino acids, which are the building blocks for protein in your body.

A nonessential amino acid is one that your body naturally produces if you don’t get it from your diet. As with all amino acids, tyrosine needs enough protein sources to be produced.

Tyrosine is synthesized from phenylalanine and it helps produce necessary chemicals and neurotransmitters such as:

  • epinephrine
  • dopamine
  • norepinephrine

These chemicals support your mood, energy level, and stress response, among other vital functions.

If you eat nutrient-dense foods, it’s likely you already have the optimal amount of tyrosine in your system.

Common sources of tyrosine include:

  • almonds
  • avocados
  • bananas
  • cheese
  • lima beans
  • milk
  • peanuts
  • poultry
  • pumpkin seeds
  • sesame seeds
  • soy
  • yogurt

Is L-tyrosine like Adderall?

No, it is not.

Adderall is an amphetamine, which is a stimulant in the central nervous system. It raises dopamine and norepinephrine levels in your brain for improved memory, focus, and attention.

Tyrosine, as a precursor to dopamine, does not promote the same levels of activity in the brain as Adderall does. In fact, the exact amount needed to achieve these levels is currently unknown.

“At first glance, the proposed link between dopamine and symptoms of ADHD might suggest that other types of therapeutic drugs could be effective, but that does not seem to be the case with L-tyrosine,” says Matthew Edelstein, a licensed psychologist in Baltimore.

“There is no empirical evidence to support the use of L-tyrosine in the treatment of symptoms related to ADHD,” he adds.

ADHD treatment works in children and adults differently. Only a trained health professional can diagnose the condition and help you determine the best approach to symptom management.

Also, keep in mind that there are three types of ADHD, according to the American Psychiatric Association (APA). These include:

  • inattentive ADHD
  • hyperactive/impulsive ADHD
  • combined ADHD

Since everyone’s different, and ADHD can also manifest in various ways, a health professional may or may not recommend prescription medication. Also, the medication that works for you might not work for someone else.

With that said, tyrosine is thought to help with some symptoms of the first type of ADHD — inattention — by increasing functions such as memory and focus.

However, more research is still needed because:

  • The existing studies on tyrosine are older than 8 years.
  • Most studies work with small sample sizes.
  • There is limited research on ADHD and tyrosine, specifically.
  • Some data has been proven not effective or been retracted.

Here is a specific breakdown of what the research says so far:

Tyrosine for ADHD symptoms in children

Experts previously thought that lower tyrosine levels in the body may be responsible for ADHD symptoms in children. However, research from 2016 suggests that most children living with ADHD have typical levels of tyrosine in their blood.

A 2011 study found that children experienced a decrease in ADHD symptoms with a combination of tyrosine and 5-HTP, but those study results were later retracted.

Tyrosine for ADHD symptoms in adults

The main claim to tyrosine for the treatment of ADHD symptoms comes from a small 1987 study. During the course of research, 12 adults living with ADHD did see an improvement in their symptoms during the first 2 weeks of supplementing with L-tyrosine.

But by 6 weeks, participants developed a tolerance. By 8 weeks, the initial tyrosine effects leveled out.

The study authors concluded that tyrosine was not effective for the treatment of adult ADHD.

Tyrosine for memory

A 2007 study on 19 adults found that tyrosine could protect memory decline during severe cold exposure. Results also showed that when participants took tyrosine, they were able to provide test answers more quickly and accurately.

Later, a review of 15 studies found that tyrosine may counteract strain on memory or cognitive processing, brought on by extreme weather or other demanding conditions.

However, in both cases, the studies worked with adults who hadn’t received an ADHD diagnosis.

Tyrosine for cognitive function

The research on this is mixed.

A 2007 article by Dr. Simon Young debunked the use of tyrosine for stress relief to improve cognitive function, saying there would only be a notable difference in extreme circumstances, like military training.

A 2015 study of 22 adults found that tyrosine could improve cognitive flexibility, like the ability to adjust to changing circumstances or come up with diverse ideas.

A 2015 literature review concluded that tyrosine is effective for improving acquiring knowledge, but only if dopamine stores are depleted already.

Again, all studies were conducted on neurotypical brains, so it’s not clear if these benefits may apply to those living with ADHD.

There are no known drug interactions between tyrosine and common ADHD medications, such as Ritalin or Adderall, but that still doesn’t mean it’s 100% safe. It’s highly advisable to discuss potential side effects and interactions with your health team.

Tyrosine should not be mixed with a class of antidepressant medications known as monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) because it could lead to a rapid increase in blood pressure.

Tyrosine should also be avoided for those who take thyroid hormone medications or levodopa (L-dopa), a medication used for Parkinson’s disease.

Also, supplements aren’t regulated by the Food and Drug Administration in the same way as prescription medications. This means there are no established safety and use protocols. It’s always a good idea to check with your doctor before you begin taking any supplements.

The existing evidence does not support the use or benefits of tyrosine for ADHD, specifically.

“While there have been some studies that suggest dietary supplementation with tyrosine can impact memory or other types of performance when animals are under physical stress, the research is extremely limited
and should be interpreted with caution,” says Edelstein.

“In the absence of additional research, the best conclusion about the use of L-tyrosine is that it has not been evaluated for long-term safety and should only be used in consultation with a trained medical professional.

You may not need a tyrosine supplement at all if you get adequate amounts of protein from your diet.

The best way to know if tyrosine is right for you is to speak with your doctor directly. Before you begin or change any medication, it’s always advisable to work with a professional.

Tyrosine – Nootropics Expert

Tyrosine enhances working memory, executive function, creative flow states, stress reduction, better mood, anti-anxiety and lessens symptoms of ADHD  

L-Tyrosine is the master precursor required to form all catecholamine neurotransmitters.

Your brain uses the enzyme tyrosine hydroxylase to convert L-Tyrosine into L-DOPA. Decarboxylation of L-DOPA results in synthesis of the neurotransmitter dopamine.[i]

Once converted into dopamine, the enzyme dopamine-beta-hydroxylase converts L-DOPA into norepinephrine (noradrenaline).

And Phenylethanolamine n-methyltransferase converts norepinephrine into epinephrine (adrenaline).

This triad of neurotransmitters are collectively known as “catecholamines”.

Tyrosine can be a highly effective nootropic for boosting cognitive function. And is particularly helpful in maintaining cognitive performance when you’re under practically any kind of stress. Including music played above 90 dB’s.

L-Tyrosine works in synergy with stimulants like methylphenidate (i.e. Ritalin).[ii] Drugs like Ritalin work by blocking the reuptake of the neurotransmitters dopamine, and norepinephrine. And if there’s not enough dopamine available to do the job, Ritalin doesn’t work very well. L-Tyrosine potentiates increases in extracellular dopamine.

L-Tyrosine also stimulates the production of thyroid hormones T3 (triiodothyronine) and T4 (thyroxine) which are crucial in maintaining both overall physical and cognitive health.

L-Tyrosine can boost libido, memory, focus, concentration, mood, offers anti-depressant effects, and improves executive function in those with ADHD.

Tyrosine helps:

  • Cognitive Stress. L-Tyrosine produces the catecholamine-triad of neurotransmitters dopaminenorepinephrine, and epinephrine. Sleep deprivation and extreme stressors like heat and cold can deplete catecholamine levels. L-Tyrosine restores them to preserve optimal cognition.[iii]
  • Neurotransmitters. L-Tyrosine is a required precursor for dopamine, norepinephrine, and epinephrine. As your dopamine levels increase, you’re better able to concentrate, organize your thoughts, and stay productive.
  • Attention Deficit Disorder (ADHD). L-Tyrosine can be an effective treatment for ADHD symptoms. It works in synergy with pharmaceutical drugs like Ritalin and Adderall by boosting extracellular levels of dopamine. Helping these drugs be more effective. And mitigating side effects like crashes when the drug wears off.

Table of Contents


Your brain converts L-Tyrosine to L-DOPA which then produces the neurotransmitter dopamine. The unused dopamine is then further converted into the neurotransmitters norepinephrine (noradrenaline) and epinephrine (adrenaline). This triad of neurotransmitters are collectively referred to as “catecholamines”.

“Tyrosine” is derived from the Greek word tyros, meaning cheese.  It was first discovered by German chemist Justus von Liebig in 1846 in the protein casein from cheese.

Tyrosine is considered a non-essential amino acid because it can be synthesized in your body from phenylalanine. Which is found in many high-protein foods such as poultry, fish, dairy, nuts, soy products, lima beans, avocados and bananas.

L-Tyrosine enhances working memory and executive function in the prefrontal cortex. It helps with creative flow states, is fuel for inspirationcognitive flexibility, and the kind of “convergent thinking” you do in multiple choice exams.

L-Tyrosine assists in the production of thyroid hormones T3 (triiodothyronine) and T4 (thyroxine) which are crucial in maintaining both overall physical and cognitive health.

L-Tyrosine vs N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine (NALT): What’s the Difference?

N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine (NALT) is the amino acid L-Tyrosine with an acetyl group added. When you take NALT as a supplement, it breaks down in your kidneys back into L-Tyrosine. So in theory, the two supplements offer the same benefits.

There is some debate in the nootropics community on which is more effective. NALT or plain L-Tyrosine. NALT is a more soluble form of L-Tyrosine so it should be more bioavailable to your body.

However, some studies report that in some cases, a sizeable percentage of supplemental NALT is excreted in urine before it’s converted into L-Tyrosine.[iv]

On a personal note, I haven’t had any issues using NALT as a source of L-Tyrosine. It gives me a dopamine and adrenal boost you’d expect from supplementing with a dopamine precursor.

But when I haven’t any NALT around I successfully switch to L-Tyrosine although at a slightly higher dose.

When dealing with ADHD/ADD, L-Tyrosine is particularly effective when stacked with ALCAR (Acetyl-L-Carnitine). ALCAR easily crosses the blood-brain barrier for boosting acetylcholine levels. And seems to positively influence serotonin levels. And Tyrosine provides my brain with the dopamine it needs to mitigate symptoms of ADHD/ADD.

I find that L-Tyrosine stacked with 20 mg of Ritalin twice a day works particularly well. Clearly, this brain doesn’t have the capacity to produce enough dopamine on its own. And needs the boost that comes from supplementing with Tyrosine.

So like all nootropics, YMMV. Always take into account how each nootropic works synergistically with others in your stack. And how they work with any meds you need to take.

This is as much art as it is science. And experimentation is key for optimal cognition.

How does L-Tyrosine work in the Brain?

L-Tyrosine boosts brain health and function in several ways. But two in particular stand out.

  1. L-Tyrosine improves memory and cognition under acute stress. Acute stress is defined as short-term stressors that can affect cognition. Examples are extreme heat or cold. Things like cold showers, extreme sports, car accidents, relationship problems, intense movies, business deals gone awry, exams and war zones.

In one study done at the University of Bedfordshire in the UK, the effect of L-Tyrosine on cognitive performance was measured before an exercise task.

Researchers recruited 8 soccer players. And had them complete a 90-minute soccer simulation performance test in an environmental chamber set at 77 degrees Fahrenheit.

The soccer players were given either L-Tyrosine before exercise or a placebo. Cognitive performance was measured before the exercise task. Then again at “half-time”, following half time, and following the entire simulation.

The cognitive performance task assessed dual-task and vigilance. The outcome revealed that cognitive vigilance and reaction time among soccer players significantly improved following administration of L-Tyrosine.

Results showed that in warm-weather conditions, L-Tyrosine could enhance cognitive function and prevent cognitive impairment during exposure to exercise-heat stress.[v]

  1. L-Tyrosine boosts neurotransmitters. L-Tyrosine taken as a supplement converts into the neurotransmitter dopamine. Dopamine helps control movement in your body, is fundamental to memory, attention and problem solving.

The unused dopamine can then convert into the neurotransmitters norepinephrine (noradrenaline) and epinephrine (adrenaline).

Norepinephrine is important for attentiveness, emotions, sleeping, dreaming and learning.

Epinephrine drives your ‘flight-or-flight’ response. It’s what prompts your reaction to dangerous circumstances, emergency situations, or in stressful situations or environments.

In one study done in the Netherlands, researchers determined if L-Tyrosine would boost cognitive resources associated with cognitive control. They performed tests designed to measure “working memory” using the N-Back Test.

Study participants were assigned to engage in a “1-back” condition of easy difficulty and then a 2-back condition of tougher difficulty. Those that used L-Tyrosine demonstrated superior performance in the 2-back test, but not the 1-back test.

The study authors suggested that L-Tyrosine provides greater cognitive enhancement when cognitive demand increases. The bottom-line; supplementation of L-Tyrosine may help you increase your IQ score due to maximizing catecholamine reserves.[vi]

How things go bad

As we get older, our brain and body chemistry and energy metabolism changes.

↓ Dopaminergic neurons are damaged or die

↓ Neurotransmitter levels decline

↓ Thyroid hormones decline

↑ Stress levels increase

↓ Working memory and mood decline

All of these changes are often attributed to aging. But could be a result of dietary and lifestyle choices.

Unchecked, they could lead to neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s, a drop-in quality of life and depression.

L-Tyrosine benefits

L-Tyrosine can boost levels of the neurotransmitters dopamine, norepinephrine, and epinephrine. And contributes to the production of thyroid hormones T4 and T3.

Tyrosine can help boost cognition especially in stressful situations. It helps improve decision making, ‘flow state’ and creativity, cognitive flexibility, and working memory.

L-Tyrosine converts into L-DOPA to produce dopamine. L-DOPA is also used to make melanin in your body. This conversion process helps in the removal of neurotoxic quinones. And chelates heavy metals like mercury and lead which can accumulate in and damage neurons.

The dopamine that is not used by your brain is available to produce norepinephrine (noradrenaline) which is important for attentiveness, emotions, sleeping, dreaming, and learning.

L-Tyrosine can be an effective nootropic when stacked with ADHD/ADD meds like Ritalin or Adderall. It helps supply extracellular dopamine needed to improve the effectiveness of stimulants used to boost the uptake of dopamine in your brain.

How does L-Tyrosine feel?

Keep in mind that L-Tyrosine is a precursor to catecholamines. So if you’re not ‘low’ on dopamine, norepinephrine or epinephrine – you may not ‘feel’ anything.

Many neurohackers report a lift in mood, better focus, concentration, increased energy, and an overall sense of well-being. L-Tyrosine can help readjust your motivation levels. It can help lower anxiety levels, especially social anxiety.

Supplementing with L-Tyrosine can help bring your blood pressure down if its elevated from a stressful situation or environment. Take it before the stressful event if you can.

L-Tyrosine helps buffer the effects of stimulants like caffeine or amphetamines. It helps potentiate and prolong the effects of Ritalin or Adderall, and reduces the crash.

If you’re into athletics or do manual work, you’ll find that supplementing with L-Tyrosine before a workout or construction job will leave you feeling great afterwards. It helps mitigate many of the effects of acute stress caused by short-term stressors.

And L-Tyrosine helps your body to produce melanin, so you may find it easier to get a tan while at the beach.

L-Tyrosine Research

L-Tyrosine to treat ADHD

Several studies have investigated using L-Tyrosine for the treatment of ADHD. One informal study published in the 1980’s determined that L-Tyrosine resulted in short-term relief from ADHD symptoms. But subjects eventually reached tolerance and a diminished effect.

This is important for neurohackers to keep in mind. It seems that L-Tyrosine on its own can benefit some more than others. Regardless if you’re treating ADHD, or are perfectly cognitively healthy.

I’ve seen more than one report of nootropic users experiencing tolerance after just a week of supplementing with L-Tyrosine. But most peer-reviewed, published studies show positive results.

One study published in Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment in 2011 looked at using amino acid precursors for the treatment of ADHD. Including L-Tyrosine for dopamine, and 5-HTP for serotonin.

The study used 85 young people aged 4 – 18 years old, all with a clinical diagnosis of ADHD. They were treated for an initial period of 8 – 10 weeks.

Urinary samples to determine serotonin and dopamine levels were collected within the first 4 weeks. If they didn’t reach adequate levels, subjects were moved to higher dosing levels 2 and then 3 until they got relief from symptoms.

Researchers found that the dopamine and serotonin precursors yielded similar results to Strattera and Ritalin. And “the amino acid protocol may be equal in efficacy to potent, pharmaceutical ADHD medications”.[vii]

L-Tyrosine reduces blood pressure under stress

This study is particularly interesting for its nootropic application. It’s commonly understood that blood pressure rises when we’re under stress. The source of stress doesn’t really matter. Stress up = blood pressure up.

A study in Amsterdam showed that L-Tyrosine administration decreased blood pressure about 15 minutes after ingestion. This study involved assessing task performance following acute stress.

Acute stress is usually short-term and can be caused by driving, fighting, athletics, martial arts training, war, combat training, CrossFit, cold showers, loud music, intense movies, loud noises, business deals, relationships, school, exams and more.

The point is, this study is applicable to every one of us. The study found that L-Tyrosine reduced diastolic blood pressure within 15 minutes of taking the supplement. And blood pressure normalized within 1 hour.

This study tells us that L-Tyrosine may promote a decrease in blood pressure caused by stress. And could be used to mitigate the effects of stressful situations if taken prior to the stressful event.[viii]

L-Tyrosine promotes cognitive flexibility

Cognitive flexibility applies to those who can adjust their thinking quickly to adapt to novel situations and stimuli. A high degree of cognitive flexibility is associated with increased fluid intelligence, superior reading and comprehension, and a healthier brain.

Recent research (2015) supports the idea that L-Tyrosine promotes cognitive flexibility. In this trial, researchers recruited 22 adults. And setup a double-blind, placebo-controlled study.

All subjects were assigned a task switching procedure to measure their flexibility. The results showed that receiving L-Tyrosine supplementation increased cognitive flexibility compared to the placebo group.

The researchers determined that “L-Tyrosine can facilitate cognitive flexibility by repleting cognitive resources”.[ix]

The team observed that increased cognitive flexibility was likely due to a boost in dopamine concentrations. They noted that L-Tyrosine enhanced usage of various cognitive resources. And one way to increase your cognitive flexibility would be to start supplementing with L-Tyrosine.

It stands to reason that people who are close-minded, set it their ways, are resistant to change and can’t cope with unexpected stimuli or situations have “cognitive rigidity”. And it’s likely due to suboptimal dopamine levels.

L-Tyrosine Dosage

L-Tyrosine suggested dosage for cognitive benefit is 500 mg – 2 grams per day.

You may find your body responds to smaller doses. Or even more if you’re stacking it with stimulants like ADHD meds. Listen to your body and see how you react.

If you find you do not experience the full benefit from L-Tyrosine,  then try using it an hour before or two hours after a meal. Because L-Tyrosine taken as a supplement may compete with other amino acids in food for transport into your system.

I personally stack L-Tyrosine with my Ritalin dose twice per day. And a final dose of L-Tyrosine late afternoon to prevent a stimulant crash.

NOTE: long-term use of L-Tyrosine can suppress serotonin. Symptoms include depression, fatigue or severe anxiety feeling much like a panic attack. You can easily counter this by supporting serotonin with a 250 – 500 mg L-Tryptophan about 60 mins. before bed.

L-Tyrosine Side Effects

L-Tyrosine is considered non-toxic and very safe. Most neurohackers don’t have any negative side effects from using L-Tyrosine.

At higher doses there are reports of stomach issues and migraines. Migraine problems usually happen to those who already suffer from migraines. This may be an indication that your neurotransmitter levels are already optimal, and you don’t need to supplement with L-Tyrosine.

L-Tyrosine can increase your thyroid hormones. So if you’re hyperthyroid you should use caution when supplementing with L-Tyrosine because it may change the way your thyroid meds work.

And if you’re taking MAO inhibitors (MAOI’s) like selegiline, Azilect, Marplan or Nardil you should not use L-Tyrosine.

MAOI’s work in your brain by blocking the enzyme monoamine oxidase. This enzyme normally blocks excess dopamine. But when you block the enzyme, more dopamine is released.

So using L-Tyrosine in combination with MAOI’s could raise dopamine levels too high. Resulting in a rapid rise in blood pressure (hypertensive crisis). Causing severe headache, nausea and sweating, severe anxiety, rapid heartbeat, chest pain, vision changes, shortness of breath and confusion.

A severe increase in blood pressure from this combo can lead to hemorrhagic stroke or a heart attack.

Where to buy L-Tyrosine

L-Tyrosine is available to buy in powder, capsule and tablet form. Capsules and tablets are usually 300 – 500 mg.

Some pre-made nootropic stacks and workout stacks also include L-Tyrosine as part of their formula.

N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine (NALT) is an alternative to plain L-Tyrosine. NALT has an acetyl group added to L-Tyrosine in an attempt to make it more bioavailable.

For example, Mind Lab Pro® 4.0 contains 11 brain enhancing nootropic compounds including N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine.

I recommend Mind Lab Pro because it addresses all aspects of anxiety resistance, memory and cognitive enhancement, stabilizes mood, brain repair, and maintenance.

This premium nootropic stack is designed to affect neurotransmitters, cognitive energy, brain waves, neuroprotection, and regeneration. See my Mind Lab Pro review for a detailed report.

Ensure you read labels carefully and stick with manufacturers who follow Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP). And are GMP-Certified. And do your best to avoid toxic “other ingredients” which are usually listed at the bottom of “Supplement Facts” labels.

Nootropics Expert Recommendation

L-Tyrosine 500 mg – 2 grams per day

I recommend using L-Tyrosine as a nootropic supplement.

Your body does synthesize some L-Tyrosine from phenylalanine which comes from high-protein foods like chicken, fish, almonds, avocados and bananas.

But most of us don’t get enough L-Tyrosine from our diet. So supplementation will help.

L-Tyrosine is helpful for most neurohackers to combat stress and sleep deprivation. It’ll boost dopamine, norepinephrine and epinephrine levels.

It’s particularly helpful if you take L-Tyrosine prior to a stressful situation, workout or physically demanding job.

L-Tyrosine is especially helpful to those dealing with ADHD/ADD. It’s a great compliment to stack with stimulant meds like Ritalin or Adderall. L-Tyrosine will provide the dopamine your brain needs. It will help smooth out and prolong the effects of stimulant meds. And help prevent the associated crash when they wear off.

A good stack for ADHD is using your usual med dose with L-Tyrosine 500 mg, Alpha GPC 300 mg, and ALCAR 500 mg.

You can buy individual L-Tyrosine supplements. Or you could try my favorite pre-formulated nootropic stack Mind Lab Pro® 4.0 which includes N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine (NALT).

Mind Lab Pro contains a synergistic blend of 11 brain enhancing nootropics covering all aspects of cognition and brain health. See my full Mind Lab Pro review for more.

You can safely use up to 2,000 mg per day when stacking with ADHD meds. But in smaller divided doses throughout your day.

[i] Slominski A., Zmijewski M., Pawelek J. “L-tyrosine and L-DOPA as hormone-like regulators of melanocytes functions” Pigment Cell Melanoma Research. 2012 Jan; 25(1): 14–27. (source)

[ii] Woods S.K., Meyer J.S. “Exogenous tyrosine potentiates the methylphenidate-induced increase in extracellular dopamine in the nucleus accumbens: a microdialysis study.” Brain Research. 1991 Sep 27;560(1-2):97-105. (source)

[iii] Hase A., Jung S.E., aan het Rot M. “Behavioral and cognitive effects of tyrosine intake in healthy human adults.” Pharmacology, Biochemistry and Behavior. 2015 Jun;133:1-6. (source)

[iv] Magnusson I., Ekman L., Wångdahl M., Wahren J. “N-acetyl-L-tyrosine and N-acetyl-L-cysteine as tyrosine and cysteine precursors during intravenous infusion in humans. ” Metabolism. 1989 Oct;38(10):957-61. (source)

[v] Coull N.A., Watkins S.L., Aldous J.W., Warren L.K., Chrismas B.C., Dascombe B., Mauger A.R., Abt G., Taylor L. “Effect of tyrosine ingestion on cognitive and physical performance utilising an intermittent soccer performance test (iSPT) in a warm environment.” European Journal of Applied Physiology. 2015 Feb;115(2):373-86. (source)

[vi] Colzato L.S., Jongkees B.J., Sellaro R., Hommel B. “Working memory reloaded: tyrosine repletes updating in the N-back task.” Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience. 2013 Dec 16;7:200. (source)

[vii] Hinz M., Stein A., Neff R., Weinberg R., Uncini T. “Treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder with monoamine amino acid precursors and organic cation transporter assay interpretation” Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment. 2011; 7: 31–38. (source)

[viii] Deijen J.B., Orlebeke J.F. “Effect of tyrosine on cognitive function and blood pressure under stress. ” Brain Research Bulletin. 1994;33(3):319-23. (source)

[ix] Steenbergen L., Sellaro R., Hommel B., Colzato L.S. “Tyrosine promotes cognitive flexibility: evidence from proactive vs. reactive control during task switching performance.” Neuropsychologia. 2015 Mar;69:50-5 (source)

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What you need to know about tyrosine

July 20 2021

In the past few years, physicians have increasingly begun to include dietary supplements in their patient regimen. If earlier the attitude of doctors to dietary supplements was skeptical, now many of them have changed their minds. The reason for this was numerous clinical studies of supplements, proving their positive effect on the human body.

One of these is tyrosine. BAA can be prescribed both as an auxiliary element in complex treatment, and for the purpose of monotherapy. In the latter case, the supplement is taken by healthy people as a general tonic or by patients who need to consolidate the result of the course of treatment. nine0003

You can order and buy high-quality dietary supplements in the online store Here you can buy products from famous brands at an affordable price. Each customer of the store has the opportunity to become a member of the loyalty program, receiving additional bonuses.

What is tyrosine and what is it for

Tyrosine is an amino acid, a precursor of norepinephrine and dopamine, which in turn are catecholamine neurotransmitters. The substance is used for the production of dietary supplements. These drugs are prescribed to compensate for the deficiency of tyrosine, which is manifested by characteristic symptoms. nine0003

The mechanism of action of supplements is aimed at increasing stress resistance, improving memory and increasing concentration. In addition, the l-tyrosine isomer is involved in the normalization of thyroid function. The positive effect of the substance on the human body has been proven by the results of studies.

Testing took place in two stages. To begin with, the volunteers received a certain dose of tyrosine and began to exercise. In the course of processing the results, no pronounced effect of the substance on the body's endurance under load was revealed. nine0003

The second part of the study was to determine the positive effect of tyrosine on people who fell into adverse conditions. For example, such as a sharp deterioration in the weather, cognitive load, a state of intense anxiety bordering on stress.

When processing the test results, a positive effect of the amino acid was revealed, manifested by the absence of depression, depression, absent-mindedness and memory impairment. Stressful situations can lead to a sharp decrease in the synthesis of catecholamines. As a result, a person reacts painfully to stimuli and can fall into a depressive state. Tyrosine prevents the decrease in the level of dopamine and norepinephrine, increasing the body's resistance to stress. nine0003

According to the results of the research, it was concluded that the use of dietary supplements helps healthy people feel more comfortable in situations that can disturb emotional balance.

Tyrosine deficiency

Since this amino acid is synthesized in the body, its synthesis may decrease under the influence of certain negative factors. The main causes leading to tyrosine deficiency are heredity and enzymatic deficiency. nine0003

Signs of an amino acid deficiency include:

  • persistent reduction in blood pressure;
  • state of chronic fatigue;
  • lethargy;
  • weight gain with normal diet;
  • decreased concentration;
  • deterioration in general physical condition;
  • violation of mental activity.

If you do not make up for the lack of tyrosine for a long time, then hypothyroidism may develop. In this case, the intake of dietary supplements should be under the strict control of an endocrinologist. Ignoring this recommendation can cause a violation of the synthesis of thyroid hormones, which will lead to serious consequences. nine0003

If we talk about tyrosine in foods, then it is rich in meat, fish, liver, peanuts, and legumes.

Tyrosine products

There are many products on the pharmaceutical market that contain L-tyrosine. They can be either single-component or contain several active ingredients. For example, mono-drugs include Now Foods L-Tyrosine (L-tyrosine) 400 mg and Now Foods L-Tyrosine Extra Strength (L-tyrosine) 750 mg. These supplements are suitable for the prevention and treatment of conditions caused by thyroxine deficiency. nine0003

If we talk about complex preparations, then in addition to thyroxine, they include iodine. These funds are prescribed in the complex treatment of persons suffering from impaired thyroid function. Self-administration of such supplements is not desirable. Before starting their use, you need to consult an endocrinologist.

Examples of combination products are Iodine and Tyrosine, Thorne Research and Iodine and Tyrosine, Iodine and Tyrosine, Pure Encapsulations. Supplements are used both in the course of complex treatment of thyroid pathologies, and to maintain its normal activity. nine0003

Side effects of tyrosine

In most cases, tyrosine supplements are well tolerated. Side effects may develop as a result of exceeding the permissible dosages. They are manifested by nausea, vomiting, increased fatigue, swelling, joint pain and heartburn. Also, when using l-tyrosine, side effects can be caused by individual intolerance.

There are no data on the use of supplements in pediatric practice. Therefore, tyrosine can be prescribed to children only as part of drugs intended for the treatment of patients of this age category. nine0003

Recommendations for the use of tyrosine

Do not exceed or reduce the dose of drugs yourself. In the first case, the development of undesirable reactions is possible, and in the second - a decrease in efficiency. It is not recommended to take supplements during pregnancy and lactation.

Drug Comparison Chart


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Tyrosine - one of the twenty standard amino acids present in the body, which play a role in the synthesis of certain proteins. Although it's not indispensable amino acid, it performs many vital functions in the body, as a precursor of the hormones dopamine, adrenaline, norepinephrine and thyroxine. Research is currently underway on the effects of this amino acid. on the body, but it is obvious that it can affect mood, memory, level stress hormones and hormone production. nine0003

The body is able to synthesize a compound often referred to as L-tyrosine when it converts another amino acid, phenylalanine, to tyrosine. In addition, the products foods contain large amounts of natural tyrosine. Most people get enough of it from the normal diet, as it is normally found in plant sources and plays a key role in photosynthesis.

Tyrosine function

Tyrosine is an aromatic amino acid, which is the building block for proteins. It is found in many high protein foods such as cheese, chicken and eggs.

In the body, tyrosine is used in mainly in the brain as a precursor to a neurotransmitter called catecholamine (dopamine, norepinephrine and epinephrine). These catecholamines are used in many different cognitive functions.

To become a catecholamine, two stages of transformation. First it must be converted to dihydroxyphenylalanine (DOPA) followed by an enzyme (usually some form decarboxylase) converts DOPA to one of the three catecholamines. nine0003

Tyrosine effect:

1. Stress

Reducing stress is important for overall health, as it reduces chronic inflammation and disease by throughout the body. It was clearly shown that those who took tyrosine had more low stress hormone levels and higher energy levels than those with who were not deficient in tyrosine.

Tyrosine is the precursor norepinephrine, which affects mood and optimistic attitude. Stress reduces the level of norepinephrine in the brain. When the rats were shocked, the level norepinephrine was significantly reduced. But when they were given tyrosine, the level norepinephrine remained constant. This is mainly due to the fact that tyrosine increases the rate of production of norepinephrine in stressful situations. nine0003

2. Depression

The decisive role of tyrosine in the production neurotransmitters means it can have a measurable effect on mood and symptoms of depression. Stimulation of the production and release of dopamine, one of "feel good" hormones, may help relieve psychological pain depression. The sedative effect of this amino acid may help people with insomnia is better to sleep.

3. Memory and cognitive functions

Many studies have shown that the capsule with tyrosine can affect the level of neurotransmitters, as well as reduce the amount of toxins that damage the nerves. This means that the risk neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's disease can be significantly reduced. Proper production of neurotransmitters functioning of neural pathways while protecting memory.

Intake of l-tyrosine improves cognitive function in situations that cause acute stress, such as excessive cold, high altitude or lack of sleep. It also improves creativity thinking and speed of switching between tasks. nine0003

4. Attention deficit disorders.

Studies have shown that the correct amino acid levels in the brain can help with concentration and attention, which is also can help overcome the worst symptoms of ADD (attention deficit disorder). L-tyrosine also plays a key role in the production of dopamine and adrenaline, two hormones, levels which are often at low levels in patients with ADD.

5. Thyroid gland.

The amino acid tyrosine is precursor of the hormone thyroxine, an important thyroid hormone. At in patients with hypothyroidism, stimulation of normal hormone production may relieve some of the side effects of this common condition. Many depressed patients also suffer from hypothyroidism.

Experiments on birds and rats have shown that that tyrosine deficiency causes much lower levels of thyroid hormones glands T3 and T4 in the blood, and constant stress also reduces the level of these hormones. nine0003

6. Muscular communication.

The nervous system is able to communicate effectively with various organs, which allows us to work daily. Tyrosine is essential for the constant communication of the nervous system, as well as for the work of the muscles of the body. For athletes and those who want to achieve quick results during training, it is important to maximize the muscle function that tyrosine is capable of.

7. Blood pressure.

This amino acid is also useful for reduction of diastolic blood pressure in acute stressful situations. nine0003

Side effect of tyrosine

Although tyrosine is generally safe, there may be side effects occur when too much tyrosine enters the body and an overdose develops. Reported side effects include nausea, headache, fatigue, heartburn and joint pain.

The body uses tyrosine to production of thyroxine, a thyroid hormone. For people who already have elevated thyroid levels or suffer from Graves' disease, replacement amino acids may aggravate symptoms. nine0003

Similarly, the effect of the compound on hormones are unpredictable for pregnant or breastfeeding women and should be to avoid.

Do not take L-tyrosine capsules if you have hyperthyroidism, schizophrenia, or Graves' disease, are taking medication for thyroid or a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI).

Although many users claim that taking tyrosine is helpful for fatigue, some people have experienced persistent fatigue after taking tyrosine supplements. nine0003

some people have experienced stiffness in their shoulders and neck after taking tyrosine, while while others have experienced unwanted weight gain.

Tyrosine users experienced significant improvement when combined with other supplements. Some users who used tyrosine to combat depression improved condition when taking 5-HTP and tryptophan together. It's connected with the fact that 5-HTP increases the level serotonin in the brain, while the tyrosine capsule increases dopamine and norepinephrine levels, all of which have an improvement effect moods. nine0003

Tyrosine - products containing

L-tyrosine mainly found in foods rich in protein.

Virtually all animal products origin - meat, fish, poultry, eggs and dairy products - are good sources of tyrosine.

Most important plant sources include soy, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, peanuts, almonds, avocados, lentils, bananas and sea spirulina.

Tyrosine dosage

The recommended daily allowance for tyrosine is not exists, but the typical dose is 1-2 grams per day. if you accept this amino acid as a supplement, the recommended daily intake is between 2 to 20 grams. Therapeutic doses used in studies range from 7 up to 30 grams per day.

Best taken on an empty stomach 30 minutes before before meals, divided into 3 doses per day.

Taking a tyrosine capsule on an empty stomach provides the formation of neurotransmitters.

Vitamin B6, vitamin B9 (folic acid) and copper together helps optimize the conversion of tyrosine to neurotransmitters.

Best form of tyrosine supplement

Tyrosine has low toxicity and supplements are generally considered safe.

Unlike many other natural supplements, tyrosine acts very quickly.

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