Safety of Tryptophan
To help avoid possible risks and complications with tryptophan, safety concerns for the supplement should be discussed with a healthcare provider. For instance, you have an increased risk of having problems with tryptophan if you have certain health conditions, such as kidney or liver disease, high levels of eosinophils, or any allergies. Tryptophan safety precautions also apply to women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Tryptophan (also known as L-tryptophan) is an amino acid that is essential for human nutrition. It is found in many foods, but it is also used in some dietary supplements. While a normal dietary intake of tryptophan is not dangerous for most people, there are concerns that tryptophan supplements may not be equally safe. Although it is not clear if tryptophan supplementation is safe for anyone, some people are more likely to experience problems than others. You may be at a higher risk for problems with tryptophan if you have:
- Liver disease, such as liver failure, cirrhosis, or hepatitis
- Kidney disease, such as kidney failure (renal failure)
- High levels of eosinophils in the blood (known as eosinophilia)
- Any allergies, including allergies to foods, dyes, or preservatives.
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you are:
- Pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant
Make sure to tell your healthcare provider about any other medications you are taking, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.