It has been shown that oxytocin differentially affects males and females. Females who are administered oxytocin are overall faster in responding to socially relevant stimuli than males who received oxytocin. Additionally, after the administration of oxytocin, females show increased amygdala activity in response to threatening scenes; however, males do not show increased amygdala activation. This phenomenon can be explained by looking at the role of gonadal hormones, specifically estrogen, which modulate the enhanced threat processing seen in females. Estrogen has been shown to stimulate the release of oxytocin from the hypothalamus and promote receptor binding in the amygdala.
A: 5-HTP or 5-hydroxytryptophan is sold as a dietary supplement for "anxiety, depression, insomnia, headaches and other conditions." Because dietary supplements (e.g., 5-HTP) have not been thoroughly studied in the clinical setting, possible side effects and interactions with other drugs are not well known. However, 5-HTP does interact with prescription antidepressants, taking them together can lead to serotonin syndrome which is a rare but potentially fatal condition. Also, because herbs and supplements are not strictly regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, these products are not required to be tested for effectiveness, purity, or safety. 5-HTP has not been proven safe or effective for the treatment of depression or bipolar disorder. There are many prescription medications that have been proven safe and effective for these conditions. In general, dietary supplements should only be taken under the supervision of your health care provider. Laura Cable, Pharm.D., BCPS
Cells were pretreated with indicated concentrations of Tβ4 peptide for 2 hours and then incubated with 200 μM H2O2 for 48 hours (A, B). The mRNAs expression was examined by RT-PCR analysis. This data were representative of three independent experiments. The bar graph shows the fold increase in mRNA expression compared with control cells. * Statistically significant differences compared with the control, p<0.05.
Despite these many roles, oxytocin is often reduced to a misleading label. While “hormone of love” may be great for catchy headlines and compelling marketing slogans, they are ultimately misleading. Jennifer Bartz from the Mount Sinai School of Medicine has found that oxytocin can have completely opposite effects on the way people behave, depending on how they view their relationships to other people.
5-HTP is an easy way to lose weight on just about any diet, so you can choose any plan that appeals to you — or even no plan at all! But if you’re looking for a quick approach proven to work, use guidelines created by the University of Rome researchers. They allotted folks 1,200 calories a day, about half from carbs and the rest a mix of lean protein and fat. That means at most sittings, you’ll want to start with 200 calories of carbs, including both starchy carbs and carbs from produce (such as a bowl of cereal with fruit, or pasta with veggies). Add about 120 calories of protein (such as some Greek yogurt, egg whites or a few ounces of lean meat). Finish with 80 calories of fat, such as 10 almonds or 2 tsp. olive oil. An easy formula for fast weight loss if we've ever heard one!
If you’re looking for hard proof that taking 5-HTP to lose weight works, we’ve got it: In a University of Rome study, obese women who took 5-HTP began eating between 1,000 to 2,000 fewer calories per day. And even as their caloric intake plummeted to a level that would leave many dieters irritable, serotonin was soothing these ladies — and not one reported hunger or diet crankiness. Further boosting spirits: The supplements quadrupled their weight loss, compared to folks given a placebo pill. “They ate a lot less than they normally would because it was easy for them,” Dr. Bhatia notes. Hearing about such an easy way to lose weight might be enough to inspire you to try the supplement for yourself. So, we went ahead and rounded up everything you need to know to get started.
The two main actions of oxytocin in the body are contraction of the womb (uterus) during childbirth and lactation. Oxytocin stimulates the uterine muscles to contract and also increases production of prostaglandins, which increase the contractions further. Manufactured oxytocin is sometimes given to induce labour if it has not started naturally or it can be used to strengthen contractions to aid childbirth. In addition, manufactured oxytocin is often given to speed up delivery of the placenta and reduce the risk of heavy bleeding by contracting the uterus. During breastfeeding, oxytocin promotes the movement of milk into the breast, allowing it to be excreted by the nipple. Oxytocin is also present in men, playing a role in sperm movement and production of testosterone by the testes.
Melanotan 2 works by stimulating the release of the pigment melanin from the skin. Less UV exposure is necessary with Melanotan 2 compared to “normal tanning”, and the tan that occurs with tanning injections is deeper and longer lasting than an individual’s “normal tan”. Melanotan works best (has the most noticeable effects) on people with fair skin tones.
Thymosin beta 4, developed by RegeneRx Biopharmaceuticals as a pharmaceutical for the healing of wounds, is a synthetic version of the natural peptide. As Dr. Allan Goldstein emphasizes, “Tb4 represents a new class of wound healing compounds. It is not a growth factor or cytokine, but rather exhibits a number of physiological properties which include the ability to sequester and regulate actin, its potent chemotactic properties. . . and its capability to downregulate a number of inflammatory cytokines that are present in chronic wounds.” When a wound heals there are many growth factors produced in the area so that additional factors, such as those currently on the market for wound healing, may help but are not necessarily lacking. Tb4 treatment, however, adds a new dimension to wound repair by providing cells with actin as needed, for cell migration, replication and differentiation.
All of this becomes heavily ironic when you consider that the chemical in question – a hormone called oxytocin – is often billed as the “hormone of love”, and even marketed as “Liquid Trust”. As a new study shows, the reality is much more complicated. Describing oxytocin as the “hormone of love” is like describing a computer as a “writing tool” – it does other things too, some of which aren’t pleasant.
Injected oxytocin analogues are used to induce labour and support labour in case of non-progression of parturition. It has largely replaced ergotamine as the principal agent to increase uterine tone in acute postpartum haemorrhage. Oxytocin is also used in veterinary medicine to facilitate birth and to increase milk production. The tocolytic agent atosiban (TractocileÂ®) acts as an antagonist of oxytocin receptors; this drug is registered in many countries to suppress premature labour between 24 and 33 weeks of gestation. It has fewer side-effects than drugs previously used for this purpose (ritodrine, salbutamol and terbutaline).
A study using an oral cavity spray of 5-HTP (via the plant source of Griffonia Simplicifolia) has noted that 7.68mg of 5-HTP via 30.72mg of Griffonia Simplicifolia extract taken five times daily (total daily dose of around 40mg) has confirmed an increase in urinary 5-HIAA (from 3.71+/-1.27mg/24 hours to 8.80+/-4.02mg/24 hours; a 137% increase) relative to baseline, confirming that 5-HTP can be absorbed sublingually. Similar results have been noted elsewhere with this spray, although it should be noted that it is confounded with other herbs (detailed in the appetite subsection).
Serotonin influences sleep and sleep-wake cycles in many ways, and scientists continue to make discoveries about how this important neurochemical affects our sleeping and waking lives. One important way serotonin affects sleep and bio time is through its relationship with the “sleep hormone” melatonin. Melatonin is made from serotonin in the presence of darkness. (Remember, melatonin production in the body is triggered by darkness and suppressed by exposure to natural and artificial light.) Healthy serotonin levels are essential for maintaining healthy melatonin levels—and both serotonin and melatonin are critical to sleep and a well-functioning bio clock. With its ability to increase serotonin, 5-HTP supports a neurochemical process that can enable high-quality sleep and keep the body’s bio clock in sync.