Dr. Aaron's Blog

Amino Acids – For Use In Addiction Treatment

July 3, 2017 Addiction, Addiction Recovery, Alcoholism, All, Mental Health, Naturopathic Medicine, Recovery coaching, Vitamin Therapy by Aaron Van Gaver

Amino acid therapy has been used for many years for various diseases. Now specialists are beginning to offer amino acids therapy as a treatment option for alcoholism and drug addiction, thereby obtaining positive results.

Neurotransmitters in the brain consist of amino acids, which are building blocks of proteins. Alcohol and drugs deplete the brain of the bodies natural chemicals. Amino acids work to restore neurotransmitters and balance the chemical composition of the brain.

Amino acid therapy is most usually administered in the form of food, drink or oral supplementation. 

Though there are 22 amino acids found in foods, Amino Acid Substitution Therapy focuses on 5-8 of them. Each of the following amino acids affect the activity of a particular neurotransmitter, which in turn directly affects the cravings associated with a particular drug.

Commonly used amino acids to treat addiction include:

5-HTP – Amino acids required for the production of serotonin, a natural antidepressant of the brain. Symptoms of serotonin deficiency can include one of the following: anxiety, sleep disorders, obsessive thoughts and behavior, depression, irritability, panic, suicidal thoughts and behavior, addictions that increase in the afternoon or evening. Cravings, associated with the lack of L-tryptophan may include sweetness and starches; Nicotine, marijuana and alcohol.

GABA – Known as anti-stress chemical, GABA deficiency can manifest anxiety, emotional or physical stress and feelings of depression by circumstances. Cravings associated with GABA deficiency may include marijuana, nicotine, carbohydrates or alcohol.

DLPA – Increase the lifespan of endorphins, which are anesthetic chemicals. Endorphin deficiency symptoms may include weepiness, crying and fragile emotions and sensitivity to pain. Cravings associated with the lack of DLPA D-phenylalanine may include starches and sweets, nicotine, heroin, alcohol or marijuana.

L-Tyrosine – Is necessary for the production of catecholamines, such as dopamine, norepinephrine and epinephrine. It’s “I’m alert and ready for my day” neurotransmitter. They are related to clarity, attention and concentration. Symptoms of deficiency may include lack of clarity and concentration, fatigue, lack of motivation, apathy and a general lack of energy to participate in personal interests or work.

L-Glutamine – And the ideal balance of the brain, which regulates the level of sugar in the blood to maintain clarity, as well as energy. Lack of L-glutamine can cause tremors, dizziness, weakness, especially when hungry. Cravings can be anything that provides a pulse of low blood sugar, such as sweets, starches, and alcohol.

On the basis of treatment and recovery, amino acid therapy is offered as part of holistic approach to alcohol and drug rehabilitation. Addiction is a symptom of a deeper problem, in order to treat a person as a whole and to provide the best results, deficiency of nutrients cannot be omitted.

If you are someone you know is struggling with an addiction, please reach out to me at [email protected]