Seasonal Affective Disorder

Benefits of Tyrosine: A double-blind, placebo-controlled study that enrolled 20 U.S. Marines suggests that tyrosine can improve mental alertness during periods of sleep deprivation. In this study, the participants were deprived of sleep for a night and then tested frequently for their alertness throughout the day as they worked. Compared to placebo, 10 to 15 grams of tyrosine given twice daily seemed to provide a “pick-up” for about 2 hours.*

L-tyrosine deficiencies affect memory, ability to handle stress, can cause depression and Seasonal Affective Disorders by disrupting the serotonin-dopamine neurotransmitters of the brain.

It always amazes me when we see a shift in nutrition on a continental scale. What causes this? Why is there such a deficiency? Is it a new additive binding up the amino acid? Or is some type of effective advertising causing a decrease in the consumptions of particular foods that are rich in these nutrients? Each practitioner picks these things up in different ways, but we do pick it up. Even though we may come to different conclusions, society gets alerted to the deficiency and finds ways to correct it. I’ve noticed this L-tyrosine deficiency in my own practice for several years. It manifests as depression and Seasonal Affective Disorder and there is an easy, cheap, natural and effective way to manage these challenges. It doesn’t work for everyone—only most people. And it does a great job of doing it.

The food most effective to replace tyrosine deficiencies is sesame seeds (except for Blood Type B people who should not eat sesame according to Dr. D’Adamo www.dadamo.com ) Sesame seeds can be taken in the form of raw seeds and tahini, or as halvah. The normal dose is about 2 tablespoons of the raw sesame seeds, or one tablespoon of tahini or halvah. It does have to be taken every day to be affective and it takes a couple of weeks to repair the tyrosine deficiency in your body.

The other thing you can do to help depression and SAD is to increase the amounts of raw fruits and vegetables in your diet. The usual dose is between 1 ½ cups to 2 cups EACH of raw fruits, raw vegetables and cooked vegetables every day. The addition of these foods makes everything you are taking (supplements, vitamins and even “real drugs”) work better.

People ask me why they can’t just take the pill form called L-Tyrosine, but it seems like this form is just too strong and is less effective in repairing the deficiency.

As will all programs, if you are on medications, please consult with your medical doctor first as going off antidepressants “cold-turkey” can be very dangerous.

* Reference: Neri DF, Wiegmann D, Stanny RR, et al. The effects of tyrosine on cognitive performance during extended wakefulness. Avit Space Environ Med. 1995; 66:313–319.