Amino Acids for low serotonin / dopamine etc

Amino acids

(along with praps magnesium malate & definitely passiflora) are the 3rd big thing that has helped me with FM, since April 2021. Altho I’m not a supp health nut in any way: I don’t take anything if I don’t see it working. Just leaving no stone unturned for things that really make a difference.

After bad experiences with 5-HTP, tryptophan, melatonin & CBD oil, I read about GABA on forums and suggestions to take it with glutamine, magnesium and passiflora. That’s basically still making a lot of difference as I’ve reported on my blog, in my blog summary and in a thread about GABA and it’s analogs / derivatives.
Now I’m balancing the GABA out with further amino acids (to balance out serotonin vs. dopamine), but also seeing that whether they increase serotonin or dopamine or both, each amino acid has a different effect on me (600+600mg(?) GABA improves a lot: stiffness, seizures etc., 400mg glutamine prevents it from relaxing me too much, 200mg theanine makes me more alert in the mornings, taurine adrenalizes me, so in 1-5-mg specks might become my “coffee”). So I’ll be bundling my infos on & experiences with them in this thread.

Which website do I recommend most for treating with amino acids? After comparing with Healthwell, Perkins, Jockers & Levy (see below): Trudy Scott's anti-anxiety blog "everywomanover29", starting with her version of the amino acid questionnaire; fibromyalgia is named under "low serotonin"

As always I keep turning over the amino acid ‘slab’ and the stones under it again & again, last week I was researching what others say about balancing serotonin & dopamine.
But up to now the website that seems most useful to me & fits best to my own experiences despite the name :wink: is Trudy Scott’s antianxiety blog everywomanover29. People like drjockers and Cynthia Perkins seem to have a lot of knowledge about them too. But my excerpts of what they say (below) always boil down to the fact that things they might say differently are all things I’ve tried already. Trudy Scott as opposed to Cynthia Perkins for instance disputes the theory that if GABA works you shouldn’t take it (because it means your brain is leaky), and her argument fits for me, the alternatives don’t. Reading her debate with Datis Kharrazian, a proponent of the leaky brain theory is interesting. I’ve skimmed thru her book and then given it to my acupressurist, but it didn’t help me much beyond the important stuff is there on the website, incl. her version of the amino acid “questionnaire”, which she has developed further from someone she cites. 1-2 other therapists also mention “the questionnaire” positively, not specifically hers. It’s nothing big or spectacular, just a list of symptoms with suggestions with which amino acid to start.
Said it before I think: I was lucky that the 750mg GABA I started with is still a good dose for me, and less isn’t. A colleague didn’t do the test, but started with 100mg as I/Trudy Scott suggested, which was good, she added, but a bit more was too much, so is now on 300mg. My acupressurist didn’t do the test and even 100mg was bad for her, so she did the test, then read the book and now has success with tyrosine instead. They are both opening capsules as she suggests, but that’s too acidic for my stomach, so I bought empty capsules and powder and encapsulate everything. Her blog is also interesting because of the user questions and experiences on it, so much information.
She also comes across/words as a kind, considerate person, not someone throwing advice at your head, which is refreshing.

Trudy Scott's version of the amino acid questionnaire

Questionnaire-page and her book:

Personally, I, JayCS, only have a few of the low GABA and low serotonin symptoms, but taking GABA helps me a treat. Mine are for low GABA: stiff muscles, insomnia, overactive brain, IBS, used to have fear of heights, for low serotonin: hyperactivity, digestive issues, fibromyalgia & other pain syndromes, insomnia, used to have social phobia & bad self-esteem; absolutely none of the other 3.

These are the lists summarized, for the exact & updated lists check her website:

Low GABA (e.g. try GABA)

Feeling worried or fearful; Panic attacks; Unable to relax or loosen up; Feeling stressed and burned-out; Acrophobia (fear of heights)
Stiff or tense muscles
Craving carbs OR alcohol OR drugs for relaxation and calming
Have intrusive / perseverate thoughts, or have an overactive brain; OR have unwanted thoughts – thoughts about unpleasant memories, images or worries
Inability to prioritize planned actions; Poor focus
Pains: Rectal spasms; Burning mouth; Visceral pain/belly pain with IBS.

Low Serotonin (e.g. try tryptophan (5-HTP if cortisol isn’t high), GABA)

Anxiety (maybe worse in winter), Panic attacks or phobias, Feeling worried or fearful
Obsessive thoughts or behaviors
Perfectionism or being overly controlling
Irritability; PMS or menopausal mood swings
Winter blues or seasonal affective disorder; Negativity or depression
Suicidal thoughts
Excessive self-criticism, Low self-esteem and poor self-confidence
Sensitivity to hot weather
Anger or rage
Digestive issues
Fibromyalgia, temporomandibular joint syndrome, or other pain syndromes
Difficulty getting to sleep; Insomnia or disturbed sleep
Afternoon or evening cravings for carbs, alcohol or drugs

Low Catecholamines (e.g. try tyrosine)

Depression and apathy; Easily bored
Lack of energy; Lack of drive and low motivation
Lack of focus; Attention deficit disorder; Procrastination and indecisiveness
Craving carbs, alcohol, caffeine, or drugs for energy

Low Endorphins (e.g. animal protein, DPA/Endorphigen)

Heightened sensitivity to emotional OR physical pain
Crying or tearing up easily
Eating to soothe your mood, or comfort eating
Really, really loving certain foods, behaviors, drugs, or alcohol
Craving a reward or numbing treat

Low Blood Sugar (e.g. glutamine, 500mg praps several times a day between meals)

Crave sugar, starch or alcohol any time during the day; Intense cravings for sweets
Irritable, shaky, headachey – especially if too long between meals
Lightheaded if meals are missed
Eating relieves fatigue
Agitated, easily upset, nervous
Amino acids: 1) Balancing GABA 2) glutamine, 3) theanine, 4) tyrosine, 5) SAMe 6) tryptophan (vs. 5-HTP), 7 glycine (incl. magnesium glycinate)
1+2 Balancing GABA & glutamine: 1. Healthfully, 2. Perkins: 3. Jockers 4. Levy. New ideas for me: B6, as P-5'-P? Lithiumorotate? Zn? Doses?
1.1 NO Healthfully: tyrosine, tryptophan, B6, high complex carb early, low protein late

by increasing dopamine with tyrosine & B6 in the mornings, tryptophan & B6 in the evenings… (is this my own addition??: glutamine, SAMe) in the morning and high complex carb & low protein meal at night? How to Balance Dopamine and Serotonin Levels | Healthfully

1.2 Zn Cynthia Perkins: Low carb (<50mg) paleo, high animal protein; (Mg) Zn <40mg, lithium orotate 125-200mg, glycine often excitatory; praps, or not: taurine, vit. B6, SAMe, NAC, theanine

Cynthia Perkins:
Many warnings about supps: Keto diet. Glutamate good for learning, bad for seizures. Too much excitement in … RLS, fibromyalgia, too much acetylcholine, Low GABA: tension, anxiety, attention, insomnia, GERD. Important vor sleep, body temperature,… “When GABA is low, glutamate is high and vice versa. … glutamate as the accelerator and GABA as the brakes…” GAD may be the problem. B6 necessary. GABA-glutamate-conversion. Or too much calcium. Mg & some zinc (<40mg) can help, or lithium orotate, Boswellia, wormwood, nettle, chamomile (herbs: careful). Careful: glycine can often be excitatory, vit. D. Taurine can help, but can also increase glutamate via the GABA shunt, vitamin B6 & SAMe can become a problem. No grains incl. whole grains too. Low carb paleo, high animal protein. Organic.
GABA itself can be stimulating tho, via the shunt. NAC may help, but may also increase glutathione, which’d increase glutamate.
Theanine may cause problems, so preferably lithium.
(German link Lithiumorotate no sfx, good for serotonin, so seizures, immune system 125–200 mg
Product: Lithium Orotate 125 mg - Nahrungserganzungen -Super-Nutrition)
Herbs such as Valerian, kava kava etc. can increase GABA in a way that the body produces less.
Avoid excitotoxins such as MSG, aspartame, glutamic acid, soy sauce, tofu.
Glutamine can stay that instead of increasing GABA.
Cheese, peas, walnuts, mushrooms, broccoli might elevate, at least if you have much too much.
Collagen high. Vit. K2 in dairy protein is good.
Diet: Best avoid fruit. <50g/d carbs. Mg: Try, not citrate or aspartate. CBD oil makes it worse. Intermittent fasting (IF) not good.

1.3 Dr Jockers

New GABA info here: Here it blames the gut microbiome for too little GABA. Might get into only certain parts of the brain.
DrJockers Aug 15th: Strange doses, wrote; 91 comments, #92 wd be mine…
These are his doses: 1-2g magnesium (threonate), 100-200mg GABA, 4-12g glutamine (B6/Zn if irritable headaches, anxiety). taurine: 300-600mg. theanine 50-100mg, passionflower.
In contrast Trudy Scott starts glutamine with 500mg! for low blood sugar and her dosages are far more individual and careful.

1.4 Sanford Levy

Anxiety, Stress, Depression - A Supplement Approach — Sanford H Levy MD, FACP, ABIHM

1.5 University about GABA

3 Theanine seems to be working for me as research suggests: it helps sleep but stops drowsiness. It increases dopamine, it's unsure what it does to serotonin.

As I pulverize a tablet, it contains filling agent. I could work out the exact amount if nec.
Slightly decreasing more (300 on Aug 4th seemed better), alertness, energy, relaxation without drowsiness, 100-600mg, no sfx known!. It is partly for DOPAMINE (“opposite” of serotonin, but not sure what it does to serotonin), like glutamine, levodopa, as well as taurine, tyrosine, SAMe and Mucuna pruriens!

4 Taurine is supposed to help sleep (research), but it adrenalized me, so I'm keeping it as an upper in the mornings/daytime, starting with specks of 1-5mg and trying more (up to 100mg?)

“500mg” taurine adrenalized me all night (4h40 sleep) & day Aug 20th. Praps I’ve found my coffee, as my acupressurist suggested! I’ll start with specks in the mornings, increasing depending on how I feel or need to get up, like next Tuesday at 7:15 for work. And praps it will get a handle on sleeplessness by getting me up, despite little sleep and then letting me get tired again properly after… Tried maybe 100mg on Aug 28th.
According to Jockers it increases GABA…
Taurine: increased sleep in flies.
Taurine increased serotonin & glutamine in rats
Taurin highly selective effect: Effect of intraventricular administration of glutaurine on norepinephrine, dopamine and serotonin turnover in different brain regions in rats - PubMed
Taurine Regulation of Neuroendocrine Function - PubMed influences many things!
(Taurine, energy drinks, and neuroendocrine effects - PubMed energy drinks - thoughts)
The Effects of an Oral Taurine Dose and Supplementation Period on Endurance Exercise Performance in Humans: A Meta-Analysis - PubMed single dose 1-6g helps endurance.

5 SAMe: 400-800mg in the mornings, as stimulating, not much research

SAM-e for Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

6 Tryptophan: Supposed to help sleep slightly better & with less sfx than 5-HTP, but it caused severe sfx for me: GI and dead tired; so if at all: VERY low dose, encapsulated
7 Glycine helps normalize sleep patterns, but may be excitatory for others; in my case excitatory, which is probably why I've had success leaving the magnesium glycinate again.

It’s supposed to help the GABA cross the blood brain barrier (Dennis). But I don’t need that, as GABA is working well enough already. Got it in the magnesium glycinate anyway, see above: Glycine works like GABA, as inhibitory neurotransmitter, helps normalize sleep patterns like glutamine & theanine, to relax and calm. This is in the added new magnesium form, that fits.
:new: Mg glycinate can cause insomnia in some and it’s a GABA antagonist, it says here:

MEDS: 1) NAC = glutamate antagonist, 2) levodopa=L-dopa for dopamine
1) NAC sleep -2400mg, better or worse (med)

(N-acetylcysteine) as I wrote here (better liposomal) as glutamate antagonist and to help sleep is mentioned on the last link (CFS/ME, with fibromites there too) suggest 1800 or 2400 mg, whilst more causes - again - diarrhea. The last person on that page also says “I elevated my glutamate / GABA levels with excess taurine” and very importantly “Once elevated Glutamate seems to be slow to rebalance” - got to watch that!

levodopa/L-dopa for RLS.

In my case it seemed OK at the small dose of 50mg, which isn’t sposed to help. 100mg seemed to increase instead of decrease my lower back unrest, LBU. But because I now know it’s probably because of trying to sleep on my back and due to my SIJ/tailbone, maybe I can try it again. Not sure what the sense of it is tho, as it was recommended to find out if it betters the LBU, which is better due to only sleeping twisted on my back.

BCAAs (branched chain amino acids) was the only thread about amino acids here up to now.

A pubmed article regarding so-called “leaky brain”, despite it being a functional doc thing: Leaky brain in neurological and psychiatric disorders: Drivers and consequences - PubMed Kharrazian used to claim that taking GABA is bad for you / will stop working due to its effect not being possible in a healthy brain. Post contending his hypothesis below :sunglasses:

Supps I'm doing & planning at the moment

As you can look up in my fibro blog, for me at the mo it’s a balance of GABA (for serotonin), glutamine (for dopamine, like NADH) and theanine (for dopamine, like NADH, sleep) that help a lot (10 symptoms), incl. energy up (that Q10 & praps NADH give others), and stiffness down. However due to impatience whilst increasing I’ve been thru an overdose of glutamine (severe neuropathy for a few hours) and then GABA (serotonin syndrome and return of symptoms for at least a week), plus increased focal seizures after a 3 month break. Improvement again, I’m back medium high. Next after readjusting probably re-trying tryptophan in specks (don’t tolerate much, serotonin), SAMe (also dopamine), taurine, then Ribose, NAC, serrapeptase, mucuna pruriens (also dopamine), probably not tyrosine (dopamine). Any detailed experiences of any of you with those?
Increasing dopamine (tyrosine) in the mornings and serotonin (tryptophan with low protein meal) at night may help balance serotonin and dopamine, altho the studies are old for my taste: How to Balance Dopamine and Serotonin Levels | Healthfully. As that’s what I’m going for, I might try taking all or some of the glutamine in the mornings instead. (Edit Sep 8th: I’m now using theanine for alertness & relaxing in the morning instead.)
For dopamine: glutamine, theanine, SAMe, taurine, mucuna pruriens (= natural), tyrosine, levodopa/L-dopa (med), dark chocolate, nuts, rhodiola rosea. Glutamine and taurine are precursors to GABA.
For serotonin: GABA, tryptophan, 5-HPT. Of these I only tolerate GABA, or will have to try again with specks. How/if theanine also affects serotonin seems unclear.
I’ve always thought GABA/serotonin has improved stiffness/gait, fine motor skills, but this suggests it may have been glutamine/dopamine: Low Dopamine in Fibromyalgia and CFS


A colleague with FM/CFS thanked me exuberantly yesterday for suggesting amino acids to her.
She’s been using GABA for 3 months now, 200 was good, 400 was too much, but 300mg is great.
Now she’s now added tyrosine and has no brain fog since.
She said she thanks for/thinks of me helping her every day. :sunglasses:

When I told her, my acupressurist confirmed she is similarly still getting help from tyrosine, whilst GABA hurt her (not sure of doses, but that’s individual anyway).

Both started off without looking at the amino acid questionnaire properly, but were taught to be careful. I gave both copies of the questionnaire book pages, and my acupressurist then bought the whole book off me. Both don’t understand English well, so it’s good for them that the book is translated.

Tyrosine implies lack of energy & focus due to low catecholamines, which I definitely do not have.

Low blood sugar

Coming back to the parts of the questionnaire not relevant to me, I’ve realized that low blood sugar is what my wife always complains about, she regularly gets “paingry”. However whilst pointing the finger to me to do something about myself, she won’t try much for her stuff. Next time she points a finger, I’ll point to glutamine: 1 or 2 birds with one stone… I’ve also got a rescue capsule of it in my rucksack for her, just in case. :roll_eyes: :smirk:

Debate: Is GABA’s effect bad for those it helps? (Leaky brain theory & Kharrazian’s GABA challenge)

In the “leaky brain theory”, proponents (esp. Datis Kharrazian) have in the past claimed that people should only take GABA to see if it has an effect, as this shdnt be the case as the molecules are way too big for the blood brain barrier BBB. If it happens, GABA would stop working anyway and you should do loads of other things analogue to leaky gut, to mend the brain barrier…

A pubmed article regarding leaky brain, despite it being a functional doc thing: Leaky brain in neurological and psychiatric disorders: Drivers and consequences - PubMed.

This interview with Datis Kharrazian by Trudy Scott shows that

  • it is a hypothesis. A theory would mean it has been tested in some way, which he says isn’t possible.
  • he is not at all sure about it, it’s just general doubt.
  • he seems to have much less experience with using GABA than her, so believes without evidence.
  • none of his suggestions for the BBB (or see here) are helpful for me at all, either they are things that harm me or I do them already

Taurine - unexpected effects on me

Everyone thinks taurine is excitatory since it is used in energy drinks. Research says this is not the case, it is contained as an antagonist to the caffeine in it. But:
I tried taurine as its sposed to help sleep and supports GABA (agonist). However it worsened my sleep. After 1g in the evening, a comparatively small dose, I slept only 4h40 and was pretty hyper. This means it works differently in me than expected: We’re all different, but I’m often differenter :smirk_cat:. So my acupressurist suggested I use it as ‘coffee’ to get me awake in the daytime. Starting small with specks 5, 10, 20, 50, then 100mg (spaced out first). The doses didn’t have any effect tho, so I’ve had to start going above of 500mg again. This is having a quite good effect on my energy, altho I felt jittery first taking 1g in the daytime yesterday. So I spread it out 2x500mg at 8:00 and 10:00 today, so I wasn’t jittery and had good energy, however like yesterday a bit overcharged, like on days when I feel good, but I know I’m overdoing it because I’m slightly feverish, which means I’m actually tired. So that’d be one reason to not continue using it like this.
Due to getting a seizure at 15:20 today, with tiny bits of aura I think yesterday, but this morning too, and the auras are still around, I’ve had a look around if I’m missing anything. Turns out as a GABA agonist it sposed to be inhibitory, so should be decreasing seizures, that’s what it’s often used for.
Here - Taurine – Nootropics Expert - it once again says that the excitatory and seizures-inducing effects of energy drinks are due to the caffeine, not the taurine. Also that taurine should also improve my memory - I have 3 examples today, where I was much more taxed trying to understand something easy or my brain is just overcharge somehow. I should need taurine being half-vegan, getting older, praps if I have CFS, ADHD (I am sort of hyper) and having (focal) seizures. Dose recommended is 500mg-2(max. 3)g. (Good also if I take levodopa for Parkinson (or in my case I’d got it prescribed in case I have RLS)). Helps relieving anxiety and stress - errh, no it isn’t really doing that. (Avoid if bipolar!)

Studies / Experiences on forums from 1974 says it might be good for seizures, but I read it that zinc ions are bad for them, which other research doesn’t support.
Taurine treatment of spontaneous chronic epilepsy in a cat - PubMed 1977: helped a cat. 2013 Oja et al. “Glutamate,GABA,andglycinethusapparentlyplayessentialroles,butaspartateandtau-rinearealsolikelytobeinvolved” “Thecon-centrationsoftheaboveaminoacidsmaybealteredinepilepsy(Wilsonetal.,1996;Sejimaetal.,1997).Anele-vationinglutamateandGABAlevelsimmediatelyafterfitsofseizureshasbeenfoundintherathippocampus” p.190: “However,hightaurinedosesadministeredmayalsodistorttheaminoacidbalancesinbraintissuesandthusbeadverseinrespectofseizureprevention.” nooexpert says the seizures are due to the caffeine, I think it’s subgroups.
Taurine information??? | Epilepsy Foundation gconners says it caused seizures, most said it didn’t do anything, kalvin said it helped (seizure- free for 3 years)

What I’m thinking is that a) seizures might come when the effect wears off, or b) just if it excites my brain and stops me sleeping, then it can also cause seizures.
Come to think of it, it was extremely unusual that I was stiff coming out of the cryotherapy, which usually has the opposite effect. And now at the end of the day, I am pretty “fatigued in my head”, not body, also a bit stiff…

What I wrote when it adrenalized me...

“500mg” taurine adrenalized me all night (4h40 sleep) & day Aug 20th. Like coffee for others? I’ll start with specks in the mornings, increasing depending on how I feel or need to get up, like next Tuesday at 7:15 for work. And praps it will get a handle on sleeplessness by getting me up, despite little sleep and then letting me get tired again properly after… Tried maybe 100mg on Aug 28th.

As I wrote on my blog on Sep 3rd. I had a 2nd focal seizure at 19:30, a 3rd at 22:35 after several auras and the seizure at 15:20. So: if it wakes me up (like everyone thinks it would, altho research contradicts this) then it will also excite seizures in me.

Bottom line: things we try may work contrary to the way we expect, so we need to keep on our toes and challenge presuppositions to whichever side…

Theanine may be good for: More effective sleep, better sleep satisfaction at night; but at daytime more alertness & focus & verbal fluency, faster recovery from exhaustion, reducing blood pressure & heartbeat & anxiety.

This article concentrates on sleep: What is L-theanine & How It Can Help You Sleep Better and Feel More Relaxed - The Sleep Doctor 100-400mg,
same guy on psychology today: What You Need to Know About L-theanine | Psychology Today United Kingdom
This suggests taking 3x100-200mg in the daytime - relaxing, reducing blood pressure, but keeping alert. L Theanine Benefits For Sleep, Anxiety & Energy vs. Caffeine – Superfoodly
Reduces heartbeat, increases GABA, serotonin, dopamine Benefits of L'Theanine for Anxiety and Sleep | Man Matters

This study from 2019 by Hidese et al. (30 people, 4 weeks) Effects of L-Theanine Administration on Stress-Related Symptoms and Cognitive Functions in Healthy Adults: A Randomized Controlled Trial says “Stress-related symptom (i.e., depression, anxiety-trait, and sleep) scores decreased and cognitive function (i.e., verbal fluency and executive function) scores improved after four weeks of L-theanine administration. The reduction in sleep quality problems (disturbances in sleep latency, sleep disturbance, and use of sleep medication) was greater in the L-theanine administration compared to the placebo administration, while verbal fluency, especially letter fluency, was improved in the L-theanine administration among individuals who showed relatively low performance at pretreatment. Moreover, L-theanine administration was safe and well complied with.”
whilst this study from 2019 about anxiety (46 people, 8 weeks) Sarris et a. L-theanine in the adjunctive treatment of generalized anxiety disorder: A double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled trial - PubMed only found greater self-reported sleep satisfaction & praps slightly better non-clinical levels of insomnia, no significant cognitive effects.

This article quotes old studies (Japan, 2004) says people didn’t sleep longer, but better, it helped recovery from exhaustion

This study finds higher alertness on EEG (2008, Nobre et al.) L-theanine, a natural constituent in tea, and its effect on mental state - PubMed

Edit 2021-09-09: For me this all means I may be underestimating how it’s helping me. There is nothing else which can explain that I’m waking up quicker and I don’t think the passiflora making my sleep deeper & more effective is enough to shorten my sleep amounts, which has pretty drastically resulted, from 9-11h to around 8h.
Trying it in the mornings has now been helping me get awake etc. GABA with it helps keep the serotonin, and thus seizures, down, whilst at the same time improving bladder & praps stiffness. Theanine alone seemed to increase auras.
Sort of using it as “tea” (it is in tea) instead of taurine as “coffee”. In combination with taurine theanine night combat the jittering.
Also I should adjust mine to the recommended doses, and it might help to find out how much % of my 500mg tablets are theanine, as I am pulverizing them. What I’m calling “200mg” per night is about 1/3 of them, which may mean it’s only 80mg of the theanine itself…

Repetition of the links above in the 1st post: Alertness, energy, relaxation without drowsiness, 100-600mg, no sfx known!, however it increases dopamine, not sure what it does to serotonin), like glutamine, levodopa, as well as taurine, tyrosine, SAMe and Mucuna pruriens! So I have to watch out for seizures. (Did have a bit of an aura for an hour, but adding GABA balanced that out again.)

Rhodiola rosea seems to help amino acids - & also be anti-inflammatory

Looking again at this healthfully page, I’m discovering more connections.
What I’ve already taking note of is them pointing to 500 mg L-tyrosine and 25 mg of vitamin B6 in the mornings to increase dopamine, and L-tryptophan in the evenings to increase serotonin (tho the studies are old). I admit I haven’t really digested it tho. Personally, I have to watch out more for my sfx, esp. seizures. I get these if I increase dopamine, or serotonin too much, and as that was the case I shdnt be increasing either more than I have been, or watch for the balance.
But what it also says (lower on the same page at the mo), with a different URL, is to take 50mg of 5-HTP and also 200-600mg Rhodiola rosalea (roseroot, rosewort, Rosenwurz) for serotonin. But the latter also - referring to - to increase the permeability of the Blood-Brain-Barrier, which allows precursors to serotonin and other neurotransmitters and, which itself refers to several studies:

CNS activity of R. rosea has been reported.12 Earlier studies found that low to medium doses of the plant had stimulatory effects, while larger doses had sedative effects.2 In lower doses, R. rosea stimulated norepinephrine, dopamine, serotonin, and nicotinic cholinergic systems in the CNS. R. rosea also increased the permeability of the blood-brain barrier to precursors of dopamine and serotonin41, 42, 43 and improved cerebral circulation.44 In an in vitro study, R. rosea root extract inhibited monoamine oxidases A and B.45

These are the articles referred to, 1986-2009

12: 12. Panossian A, Wagner H. Stimulating effect of adaptogens: an overview with particular reference to their efficacy following single dose administration. Phytother Res . 2005;19(10):819-838.16261511
2. Brown RP, Gerbarg PL, Ramazanov Z. Rhodiola rosea : a phytomedicinal overview. HerbalGram . 2002;56:40-52.
41. Kurkin VA, Zapesochnaya GG. Chemical composition and pharmacological properties of Rhodiola rosea . Chem Pharm J . 1986;20(10):1231-1244.42. Petkov VD, Yonkov D, Mosharoff A, et al. Effects of alcohol aqueous extract from Rhodiola rosea L. roots on learning and memory. Acta Physiol Pharmacol Bulg . 1986;12(1):3-16.375162343. Saratikov A, Marina TF, Fisanova LL. Effect of golden root extract on processes of serotonin synthesis in CNS. J Biol Sci . 1978;6:142.
44. Pogorelyĭ VE, Makarova LM. Rhodiola rosea extract for prophylaxis of ischemic cerebral circulation disorder [in Russian]. Eksp Klin Farmakol . 2002;65(4):19-22.1244906945. van Diermen D, Marston A, Bravo J, Reist M, Carrupt PA, Hostettmann K. Monoamine oxidase inhibition by Rhodiola rosea L. roots. J Ethnopharmacol . 2009;122(2):397-401.19168123

Now my doc had prescribed “rosalea” to get my blood pressure down, which it now is, altho nothing on this page mentions blood pressure.

So I’m having a look for more modern studies and am pleased to find even more goodies:

Seems to be anti-inflammatory Anti-inflammatory effects of Rhodiola rosea L.: A review - ScienceDirect, mainly due to the salidroside in it.

Studies from 2021

A combination of green tea, rhodiola, magnesium and B vitamins modulates brain activity and protects against the effects of induced social stress in healthy volunteers - PubMed 2021: help with stress in combination.
The Therapeutic Effects and Mechanisms of Salidroside on Cardiovascular and Metabolic Diseases: An Updated Review - PubMed 2021: Might be good.
A supercritical fluid workflow for the quality assessment of herbal drugs and commercial preparations from Rhodiola rosea - PubMed 2021: A quick way to control the quality of the compound.
Quality Evaluation of Randomized Controlled Trials of Rhodiola Species: A Systematic Review - PubMed 2021: Still no good trials.
(cf. Rhodiola rosea for physical and mental fatigue: a systematic review - PubMed (2012: all trials have a high risk of bias))
Dietary Supplement Ingredients for Optimizing Cognitive Performance Among Healthy Adults: A Systematic Review - PubMed 2021: Better trials needed.
Running out of time to smell the roseroots: Reviewing threats and trade in wild Rhodiola rosea L - PubMed 2021: Due to the demand & things like illegal harvesting, the real wild plant needs to be protected.

More information about B6 (pyridoxine), esp. in the form of P5P (Pyridoxal phosphate), esp. dosage:
It converts 5-HTP (so also L-tryptophan) and glutamine into GABA, increasing serotonin, so best 25mg in the evenings
SAM inhibits it, so I guess also SAM-e/SAMe, so wdnt make sense taking P5P together with SAM-e. (However I’m not taking SAMe any more anyway at the moment, too many sfx, too few fx.)
Dosage: Most say about 50mg. Here it says " In the largest clinical trial to date, pyridoxal phosphate dosage of 250 mg/day (for 30 days) was safe, but it had limited efficacy. A higher dosage (750 mg/day) provided no further benefits [76, 77]. Lower doses (50 mg) may be sufficient for sideroblastic anemia."
Earthclinic says 50 mg 3x/d for trigger finger, praps best with Magnesium. Good for depression, sleep, brain health, neurotransmitters, energy, neuropathy, praps edema, joint pain, but motility (ehmm… don’t need that…)

Whoops: keep the serotonin at the right level, and thus seizures down.