Posted by Miguel (184.108.40.206) on March 03, 2000 at 00:48:20:
Check this article out. Has anyone tried phenylalanine?
Phenylalanine: Like other amino acids, this one comes in "d"
and "l" (right and left) forms. The difference between the forms is like
the difference between your hands. They're identical but opposite,
mirror images of each other. The "left-handed" form is known as
l-phenylalanine, or LPA. This is the form in which phenylalanine is
normally found in foods. The "right-handed" form is known as
d-phenylalanine, or DPA. This is the form that protects endorphins in
our bodies and helps us to fight pain and depression. A mixture of the
two forms, which has been used to fight pain since 1978, is known as
dl-phenylalanine, or DLPA.
Phenylalanine protects our endorphins. It has helped many people
overcome pain, as well as the depression that often accompanies
chronic pain. Three of the ten patients in the original study of
phenylalanine's effects on pain reported significant relief. It also has
proved effective against painful inflammation.
Phenylalanine is not a drug, and it does not work directly against pain.
Instead, it acts as an "endorphin shield," battling pain indirectly by
helping the body's built-in pain-control system grow more powerful.
Phenylalanine was first tested against pain in a 1978 study at the
Chicago Medical School. Researchers began by timing how long
laboratory mice would remain on a hot plate before jumping off. Then
they injected hundreds of mice with phenylalanine and again watched to
see how long the mice would remain on the heated surface before
The amino acid blocked pain in 70% of the mice, allowing them to stay
on the hot surface longer than ever. And the pain-blocking action
actually grew stronger with time. Standard medicines tend to become
less effective over time, as the body grows accustomed to them. But
phenylalanine was actually more effective on the ninth day than it was
on the first. And there was more good news. Phenylalanine worked with
other medicines, making them stronger, and did all this without any
apparent side effects.
Excited by these surprisingly positive results, the Chicago scientists
tested phenylalanine on humans. The results were astounding. Ten
patients suffering from long-standing chronic pain -- people who had
not been helped by modern medicine -- found relief with this simple
amino acid. Phenylalanine relieved chronic pain that had not been
helped by conventional methods. There were no harmful side effects
and no one became addicted (as can be the case with powerful pain
medicines) Also, no one developed a tolerance to phenylalanine,
requiring larger and larger doses to get the same effect, as is often the
case with conventional pain drugs.
Further research supported the early promising results. In one landmark
study, 43 patients suffering from various types of severe pain were
given 250 mg of phenylalanine four times a day. Some of the patients
reported marked relief within one week. But by the end of the fourth
week, 75% of the patients said their pain had been relieved.
In Great Britain, a double-blind controlled study was undertaken to
determine whether the amino acid really worked or if the pain relief
reported in other studies was caused by the so-called placebo effect.
It's well known that the power of belief can act as a medicine. Thus, if
you give people pills that contain no medicine but tell them that the pills
are powerful drugs, many patients will get better.
The participants in this study were adults suffering from long-standing,
intractable pain of varied causes that had not been cured by
conventional drugs or physical therapy. Despite that fact that lower
doses of the substance were given and a 50% reduction in pain was
required to qualify as improvement, more than 30% of the participants
enjoyed significant relief. Phenylalanine outperformed the placebo,
showing that it is, indeed, a powerful medicine.
There are some people, however, who cannot use phenylalanine. This
includes those born with a genetic deficiency called phenylketonuria
(PKU) that prevents them from metabolizing phenylalanine; those with
pre-existing high blood pressure (phenylalanine can elevate blood
pressure in people who are already hypertensive); and people with
cancer (phenylalanine can promote cancer cell division).
Although phenylalanine is a powerful pain killer, it does not begin to
work as rapidly as aspirin and other pain medications. This is because
the amino acid helps to increase the body's supply of endorphins,
rather than attacking pain directly. Strengthening the body's natural
pain-control mechanisms is a very effective strategy, but it takes time to
begin working. For headaches and other acute pain, people naturally
prefer the instant pain relief they get from aspirin and other conventional
What about chronic pain that does not respond to standard medicines,
physical therapy, and surgery? Phenylalanine has ample time to begin
working in these cases, so why isn't it used more? Because for drug
companies, phenylalanine isn't profitable. It's a simple amino acid that
cannot be patented. Thus, most doctors know that phenylalanine is an
amino acid, but have never heard of its powerful antipain properties,
because no drug companies promote it.
Suggested dose: 500 mg, two to three times a day.
Post a Followup