If you or someone close to you is suffering from anxiety or depression you may have heard about supplements such as Ashwagandha and 5htp, which can have a positive effect on resolving these symptoms.
However, there is a lack of available information when it comes to whether these supplements are safe to be taken together. That is why in this article we will expand on the benefits of each supplement, and look more closely at the interactions between them.
Ashwagandha benefits and interactions
Ashwagandha is a type of herb called an adaptogen, which entails the ability to regulate stress levels by affecting the adrenal glands. This herb is known to provide a variety of benefits, some of which include:
- Reducing anxiety – A placebo-controlled study found that those who took 600mg of Ashwagandha daily showed significantly less stress after two months.
- Boosting testosterone – Ashwagandha has been shown to increase serum testosterone and improve sperm count and mobility.
- Increased muscle size and strength – Ashwagandha was found to contribute to increased muscle mass which is why it could be highly valuable when paired with resistance training.
Ashwagandha with other medicines
In general, Ashwagandha has no severe interactions with most drugs, but caution is advised. Ashwagandha can have mild negative interactions with several medicines, some of which include sedative medications, immunosuppressants, medications for diabetes and high blood pressure.
5htp benefits and interactions
5htp (5-hydroxytryptophan) is a compound that is produced solely within our bodies but can be supplemented in order to tackle symptoms of depression or anxiety. The main benefits of supplementing 5htp are:
- May help with depression – A study found that 5thp has a noticeable antidepressant effect, as 73% of patients showed improved symptoms within 2 months.
- May help with insomnia – The serotonin which 5htp produces can convert into melatonin, which as a result could contribute to falling asleep, as well as improving sleep quality.
- Can reduce migraine pains – It was found that 5htp had almost the same efficacy in resolving migraine pains as a drug specifically used for migraines.
5htp with other medicines
5htp can have moderate interactions with specific drugs. It is advised to avoid consuming 5htp together with medicines that have a sedative effect, as well as antidepressants and other drugs which boost the production of serotonin, as 5htp already increases serotonin production and too much serotonin in the brain can cause serious complications.
Is it safe to take ashwagandha and 5htp together?
Currently, no interactions have been found between Ashwagandha and 5htp but this doesn’t mean that no interactions exist. Even though some report taking Ashwagandha and 5htp together, there is currently not enough research to support the claim that this is a safe combination.
If you do intend on taking the two supplements together, it would be best to seek the advice of your healthcare provider first and closely monitor for any adverse reactions.
How to take ashwagandha and 5htp
Ashwagandha may be taken at any time of day, both on an empty stomach or with food. Although there are claims of greater benefits when it is taken on an empty stomach, this can cause mild pain and discomfort for some.
There is no standardized dosage of Ashwagandha and recommendations will vary anywhere from 250mg to 5g per day. The best dose will largely depend on your own goals, but a standard dose of 600mg has shown to be highly effective.
5htp may also be taken at any time of day, but most will prefer taking it before bed, as it can cause sleepiness. 5htp is also generally taken on an empty stomach but if it is used for appetite regulation it should be taken around 30 minutes prior to a meal.
Similar to Ashwagandha, recommended doses of 5htp can vary between 100 and 800mg per day. However, large doses of 5htp can be dangerous and it was found that doses as low as 100mg per day can be effective when combined with a drug like carbidopa.
Although some claim that it is safe to take Ashwagandha and 5htp together, current research is not clear on the subject, which is why it would be best to consult with a medical professional beforehand and to be cautious of any unusual symptoms.