Welcome to our blog!

Here you will find great tips for healthy living, nutritional advice, and the latest news on health studies and research.

Amino Acid Treatment for Neurotransmitter Depletion or Deficiency

I have been very fortunate to have been educated and trained in the use of amino acid supplements for patients. My training has been under the tutelage of Dr. Marty Hinz of the NeuroResearch clinic. He is one of the foremost researchers for amino acid therapy and disease treatment. I have significant experience using amino acids for treatment since 2003. As with advances in medicine and disease, there also come advances in nutrition and disease. Amino acid nutritional therapy is a fairly new science, relative to treatment of disease, based upon neurotransmitter depletion or dysfunction. Recent discoveries have increased our knowledge of how our natural chemical neurotransmitters work, relative to certain disease processes. This has shed new insight into non-pharmaceutical treatment of individuals with those diseases. The following is a partial list of diseases associated with neurotransmitter depletion or deficiency:

  • Obesity
  • Parkinson’s Disease
  • Depression and Anxiety
  • ADHD
  • Migraine Headaches
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Chronic fatigue, chronic pain syndromes

There are many more associated diseases not listed here

What are Neurotransmitters and Amino Acids?
Neurotransmitters are tiny chemical messengers that allow your nerves to keep the nervous signal traveling and communicate with each other. They are released from the end of one nerve, dumped into the space between the nerves and then move on to attach to a receptor on the next nerve. This works great until there are not enough neurotransmitters to allow for effective communication between nerves. When you do not have enough neurotransmitters in your system, such as reduction or depletion of proper neurotransmitters levels, you can suffer the symptoms of one or more specific disease process. Amino acids are the building blocks of the neurotransmitters. We can only make neurotransmitters if we have the proper nutrients (amino acids) and amounts to do so. There are many neurotransmitters such as serotonin, dopamine, epinephrine and norepinephrine (among a few) which are responsible for many body functions including mood, cognition, hunger, sleep as well as a host of others.

What are Amino Acids
As I stated earlier, amino acids are those protein by-products that help build neurotransmitters in the body. The reason we need amino acids is that the brain cannot generate its own neurotransmitters without them and the central nervous system cannot function without them. Many foods and drugs/medications/pharmaceuticals can actually deplete the neurotransmitters from your body. Drugs do not make neurotransmitters, they only shuffle them around in your body. The fact is, many drugs actually deplete or diminish the number of neurotransmitters in your system thus eventually making you feel worse and contributing to disease symptoms. We all need amino acids.

Information and misinformation
I have read much about amino acid therapy and neurotransmitters both in medical literature/studies and from websites on the internet. There is a growing body of information and misinformation. Here are a few things I have learned:

  • Amino acid therapy must be balanced and specific in its dosages. Too much of one amino acid can deplete another thus creating as many problems as it is designed to help.
  • Lab testing for neurotransmitter levels is in its infancy and several labs have developed a urine test. However giving a urine test prior to beginning amino acid therapy is a waste of time and money because there is no correlation between systemic and urinary levels. The reason? The kidneys make their own neurotransmitters.
  • There is only one lab I know of that is actually calibrated to account for the discrepancies in the kidneys involvement in making neurotransmitters.
  • All nutritional supplements are not made equally. The purity of the product is important.
  • When disease is present, supplement dosages should be used to elevate neurotranmitter levels into therapeutic ranges and not necessarily normal values.
  • Many physicians are jumping on the amino acid treatment bandwagon without proper training in their uses especially for specific disease processes.

Obviously amino acid supplementation is important enough, that I feel it imperative to let patients know that they should have trained professional guidance relative to its usage. One could buy all the products necessary from a health food store however it would be cost prohibitive and there is the possibility of poor quality and improper self dosages. In trained hands amino acid treatment is very safe with relatively few side effects and can even be used with children and adolescents.

For more information to find out if you or a loved one is a candidate for amino acid therapy call our office at (630) 351-4700.