Skip to content
Close (esc)

SAVE 15% ON YOUR FIRST ORDER !

Use code NEW15 to save 15% on your 1st order. FREE UK next day delivery if you order before 3PM . FREE USA delivery 5-7 days.

l tyrosine benefits l tyrosine dosage l tyrosine supplement

Accomplish more: experts' opinion on l-tyrosine benefits & dosage

Published Apr 24, 2024 | Updated May 21, 2024
article
filter

Everybody desires to be motivated. What makes that possible? Say hello to your reward and pleasure chemical, dopamine. Dopamine is made from a natural nutrient called tyrosine. What is tyrosine? It’s an amino acid that gets turned into proteins like dopamine by your body. Higher tyrosine levels mean higher dopamine levels. Higher dopamine levels mean experiencing more pleasure and staying motivated. Here's your all-inclusive guide to dopamine’s building block, tyrosine and the science behind achieving goals, completing tasks and enjoying what life has to offer. 


What are the benefits of taking tyrosine?

Tyrosine is the building block of your reward and pleasure chemical dopamine. By getting enough tyrosine, dopamine can be produced to a higher extent. After dopamine gets released, it can help you stay motivated and experience more pleasure. 

Does tyrosine increase dopamine?

Three evidence reviews of the existing literature have shown that tyrosine supplementation does in fact increase dopamine production[1 Trusted Source 2019 - Psychological research Human clinical study Food for thought: association between dietary tyrosine and cognitive performance in younger and older adults ,[2 Trusted Source 1978 - Naunyn-Schmiedeberg’s Archives of Pharmacology Animal study Dependence of 5-HT and catecholamine synthesis on concentrations of precursor amino-acids in rat brain ,[3 Trusted Source 2007 - The Journal of Nutrition Evidence review Tyrosine, Phenylalanine, and Catecholamine Synthesis and Function in the Brain . Even the European Food Safety Authority Panel concluded that there’s a cause-and-effect relationship between tyrosine and its contribution to the normal conversion of dopamine[4 Trusted Source 2011 - EFSA Journal Governmental authority Scientific Opinion on the substantiation of a health claim related to L-tyrosine and contribution to normal synthesis of dopamine pursuant to Article 13(5) of Regulation (EC) No 1924/2006 . Here’s what tyrosine effects are.

How does l-tyrosine make you feel?

When dopamine levels are high, you may experience more pleasure from pleasurable activities like eating, shopping or having sex, and are more likely to feel the reward after completing a task.

 

What foods are highest in tyrosine?

Protein-rich sources are high in tyrosine and include cheese, tofu and eggs. Boasting up to 2300mg tyrosine per 100g there's a reason they are considered the top natural dopamine boosters[5 Trusted Source My Food Data Database sourced from the USDA Food Data Central Foods Highest in Tyrosine . Tyrosine goes through a conversion process before it forms into the brain messenger dopamine. It’s first converted to a compound called l-DOPA. L-DOPA is then converted to your pleasure and reward chemical dopamine.


What are the symptoms of low tyrosine?

If your tyrosine levels are low, dopamine will only be able to be produced to a certain extent. Because your body will be hindered from releasing enough dopamine, l-tyrosine deficiency symptoms will surface, usually as a lack of motivation and appreciation for the pleasurable things in life. 

brain feed provides you with the world’s 1st 800 mg tyrosine capsule made from fermented corn.


Does tyrosine really work?

A better pre-workout regime, higher sex drive and energy levels, and ADHD alleviation are just some of the l-tyrosine benefits often suggested online. Let’s take a look at what the clinical evidence says.

Does tyrosine affect libido?

L-tyrosine & sex drive are connected to some extent. By increasing dopamine levels you enhance other factors that affect your sex drive with l-tyrosine. Motivation, for example, increases the sex drive by keeping you wanting for somewhat constant arousal[6 Trusted Source 2023 - Very well mind Blog article How Arousal Theory of Motivation Works . The same is true for pleasure and the brain's reward system. It’s also important to remember that dopamine responds to novelty. Let’s say you just started a new relationship. At first, the sex is amazing. However, it can get meh very quickly. Why is that? The novelty of the new partner has worn off which makes the sex less pleasurable. Shaking up routines in the bedroom can enhance sexual satisfaction in long-term relationships[7 Trusted Source 2002 - The Journal of Neuroscience: The Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience Animal study Differential Expression of Motivational Stimulus Properties by Dopamine in Nucleus Accumbens Shell versus Core and Prefrontal Cortex . Getting enough tyrosine, however, allows your body to produce enough dopamine to keep you going. Get more answers to “is sex good for mental health”. 

Does l-tyrosine help with ADHD? 

For the last decade, researchers have been studying the connection between dopamine and tyrosine for ADHD. Reddit is full of posts on tyrosine being the go-to supplement to alleviate one’s ADHD symptoms where people talk about the effects and the l-tyrosine dosage for ADHD. Since tyrosine is the building block for the motivation and reward chemical dopamine, researchers examined its role in ADHD in 72 children[8 Trusted Source 2016 - PLoS ONE Human clinical study No Tryptophan, Tyrosine and Phenylalanine Abnormalities in Children with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder . They found that a deficiency in tyrosine is unrelated to ADHD. Another study that took place in Oregon, US found none to little variation in nutrients in both groups and therefore concluded that larger-scale studies are needed to further examine the role of tyrosine in ADHD[9 Trusted Source 2019 - Nutritional Neuroscience Human clinical study Evaluation of Dietary Intake in Children and College Students With and Without Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder . Read more about the truth behind dopamine and ADHD to understand the mechanisms better.

L-tyrosine before workout

L-tyrosine is a common ingredient in pre-workout mixtures. It lifts your dopamine levels which helps you maintain motivation and then provides you with that proud buzz of making it through today’s session. A new study from Johns Hopkins University has found a promising link between dopamine and workout motivation highlighting the importance of tyrosine before a workout[10 Trusted Source 2015 - Journal of Psychiatric Research Evidence review Effect of tyrosine supplementation on clinical and healthy populations under stress or cognitive demands—A review . The study shows an interesting link between dopamine and exercise motivation. The amount of dopamine our body can produce can make or break the workout session as it seems[10 Trusted Source 2015 - Journal of Psychiatric Research Evidence review Effect of tyrosine supplementation on clinical and healthy populations under stress or cognitive demands—A review . The production of your reward chemical depends on your body’s levels of the amino acid tyrosine which can make this nutrient an important pre-workout supplement.

Is tyrosine an energy booster?

Being connected to exercise, tyrosine is also frequently thought about as an energy booster. Researchers in the 90’s examined sleep-deprived individuals and found that tyrosine supplementation helped them stay alert for 3 hours longer compared to those who received an inactive substance, called a placebo[11 Trusted Source 1995 - Aviation, Space, and Environmental Medicine Human clinical study The effects of tyrosine on cognitive performance during extended wakefulness . A later study on male cyclists also showed that those who took tyrosine were able to exercise for longer periods compared to a placebo group[12 Trusted Source 2011 - European Journal of Applied Physiology Human clinical study Oral tyrosine supplementation improves exercise capacity in the heat . Despite there being some evidence that supports the notion that tyrosine is an energy booster, it's important to note that instead of being a quick energy fix like caffeine, it helps sustain energy levels and endurance over time, especially when faced with mentally or physically demanding tasks. 

L-tyrosine for anxiety

There’s a lot of talk about anxiety, tyrosine & depression online. There is currently little evidence suggesting that there’s any kind of connection besides you feeling better when you’re motivated when your dopamine levels are high. A study on 46 university students found that administering l-tyrosine suppressed fear and anxiety responses in participants, possibly by regulating dopamine and adrenaline which are involved in expressing fear[13 Trusted Source 2019 - Scientific Reports Human clinical study Fear expression is suppressed by tyrosine administration . The research also states this means tyrosine has yet to be recognized for its anxiolytic properties.

L-tyrosine for withdrawal

During withdrawal from substances like opioids, nicotine, and alcohol, dopamine levels drop significantly, contributing to withdrawal symptoms[14 Trusted Source 2019 - Journal of Neural Transmission Evidence review Dopamine and addiction: What have we learned from 40 years of research . Supplementing with l-tyrosine can help restore dopamine levels and alleviate these symptoms. For example, a study found that a nutrient supplement containing l-tyrosine reduced cravings and withdrawal symptoms in recovering drug addicts[15 Trusted Source 2020 - The Permanente Journal Evidence review Mechanisms of Action and Pharmacokinetics of Cannabis . Another study showed that removing tyrosine from the diet increased cravings and desire for alcohol in abstinent alcoholics[16 Trusted Source 2012 - Journal of Huazhong University of Science and Technology. Medical Sciences Human clinical study Neurotransmitter-precursor-supplement intervention for detoxified heroin addicts .

While the evidence is limited, these studies suggest that l-tyrosine for withdrawal could be a useful natural option to help people through the withdrawal process. It may help ease psychological distress, cravings, and depressive symptoms common in early withdrawal.

 

Is it OK to take l-tyrosine everyday?

Yes, it’s safe to take l-tyrosine supplements every day. Several studies have tried to answer the question ‘Is tyrosine safe’ by investigating taking tyrosine daily for extended periods. A study from the 80’s gave participants 7500 mg of l-tyrosine for 2 weeks[17 Trusted Source 1985 - Hypertension Human clinical study Chronic dietary tyrosine supplements do not affect mild essential hypertension . They found no adverse effects. They also tested a single dose of up to 150 mg/kg body weight (around 10,000 mg for a 68 kg person) with no reported side effects[[17 Trusted Source 1985 - Hypertension Human clinical study Chronic dietary tyrosine supplements do not affect mild essential hypertension 17].

A tyrosine review from 2017 which examined 35 tyrosine supplementation studies found that the tyrosine dosage differed in studies[9 Trusted Source 2019 - Nutritional Neuroscience Human clinical study Evaluation of Dietary Intake in Children and College Students With and Without Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder . L-tyrosine doses have varied from 500 mg to 12000 mg per day. Doses higher than 12000 mg per day are unrecommended as they can evoke side effects of tyrosine such as nausea, headache and fatigue.

How quickly does tyrosine work?

Tyrosine typically starts working within 30 to 60 minutes after ingestion and its effects can last up to 8 hours[18 Trusted Source 2017 - Nutrients Human clinical study Dose-Dependent Effects of Oral Tyrosine Administration on Plasma Tyrosine Levels and Cognition in Aging . Tyrosine should be taken 30-60 minutes before meals because it is better absorbed on an empty stomach. This allows the tyrosine to enter the bloodstream more efficiently before other amino acids from food compete for absorption.

Does tyrosine reduce serotonin levels?

There is currently no evidence suggesting that higher tyrosine levels could deplete serotonin in your body. Even though dopamine and serotonin are connected, more research is needed to understand the exact mechanisms which may help answer this question. For now, science is yet to confirm anything of that sort. 


Buy tyrosine UK, EU & US: A checklist for the best

Consider quality, format, dosage and source when buying a supplement like tyrosine. Holland and Barrett, one of the most well-known retailers in the UK, only offer a 500 mg tyrosine supplement. Based on brain feed’s research on a small sample of existing results on tyrosine supplementation up to the year 2018, 800 mg was considered the optimal dose for a quality supplement. You can buy a tyrosine supplement from brain feed to get the world’s 1st natural 800 mg capsule from fermented corn. 

What's the difference between tyrosine, l-tyrosine and n-acetyl l-tyrosine? 

Tyrosine and l-tyrosine are the same compounds - they refer to the same amino acid as the terms are interchangeable. Supplements should always be made of l-tyrosine as this is the biologically active form found in proteins and used by the body. Some supplements are made of NALT (n-acetyl l-tyrosine) as it’s more water-soluble, providing some people with a false hope that it’ll ensure better effects. However, NALT’s conversion rate to tyrosine in the body is low. This means that compared to tyrosine you would need a larger dose of NALT to get the same benefits, making tyrosine the preferred choice.



All in all, tyrosine is nature’s effective and safe dopamine booster. Feeling motivated and experiencing pleasure are just a couple of benefits that sum up why elevating your dopamine levels is important.

 

References

[1] Kühn, S., Düzel, S., Colzato, L., Norman, K., Gallinat, J., Brandmaier, A. M., Lindenberger, U., & Widaman, K. F. (2019). Food for thought: association between dietary tyrosine and cognitive performance in younger and older adults. Psychological research, 83(6), 1097–1106. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00426-017-0957-4

[2] Carlsson, A., & Lindqvist, M. (1978). Dependence of 5-HT and catecholamine synthesis on concentrations of precursor amino-acids in rat brain. Naunyn-Schmiedeberg’s Archives of Pharmacology, 303(2), 157–164. https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00508062

[3] Fernstrom, J. D., & Fernstrom, M. H. (2007). Tyrosine, Phenylalanine, and Catecholamine Synthesis and Function in the Brain. The Journal of Nutrition, 137(6), 1539S-1547S. https://doi.org/10.1093/jn/137.6.1539S

[4] EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA) (2011). Scientific Opinion on the substantiation of a health claim related to L-tyrosine and contribution to normal synthesis of dopamine pursuant to Article 13(5) of Regulation (EC) No 1924/2006. EFSA Journal, 9(7), 2290 – 2297. https://doi.org/10.2903/j.efsa.2011.2290

[5] Foods Highest in Tyrosine (n.d.). My Food Data. https://tools.myfooddata.com/nutrient-ranking-tool/tyrosine/all/highest/grams/common/no

[6] Cherry, K. (2023). How Arousal Theory of Motivation Works. Very well mind. https://www.verywellmind.com/the-arousal-theory-of-motivation-2795380

[7] Bassareo, V., De Luca, M. A., & Di Chiara, G. (2002). Differential Expression of Motivational Stimulus Properties by Dopamine in Nucleus Accumbens Shell versus Core and Prefrontal Cortex. The Journal of Neuroscience: The Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience, 22(11), 4709–4719. https://doi.org/10.1523/JNEUROSCI.22-11-04709.2002

[8] Bergwerff, C. E., Luman, M., Blom, H. J., & Oosterlaan, J. (2016). No Tryptophan, Tyrosine and Phenylalanine Abnormalities in Children with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. PLoS ONE, 11(3), e0151100. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0151100

[9] Holton, K. F., Johnstone, J. M., Brandley, E. T., & Nigg, J. T. (2019). Evaluation of Dietary Intake in Children and College Students With and Without Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. Nutritional Neuroscience, 22(9), 664–677. https://doi.org/10.1080/1028415X.2018.1427661

[10] Jongkees, B. J., Hommel, B., Kühn, S., & Colzato, L. S. (2015). Effect of tyrosine supplementation on clinical and healthy populations under stress or cognitive demands—A review. Journal of Psychiatric Research, 70, 50–57. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpsychires.2015.08.014

[11] Neri, D. F., Wiegmann, D., Stanny, R. R., Shappell, S. A., McCardie, A., & McKay, D. L. (1995). The effects of tyrosine on cognitive performance during extended wakefulness. Aviation, Space, and Environmental Medicine, 66(4), 313–319. https://apps.dtic.mil/sti/tr/pdf/ADA279789.pdf

[12] Tumilty, L., Davison, G., Beckmann, M., & Thatcher, R. (2011). Oral tyrosine supplementation improves exercise capacity in the heat. European Journal of Applied Physiology, 111(12), 2941–2950. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00421-011-1921-4

[13] Soranzo, A., & Aquili, L. (2019). Fear expression is suppressed by tyrosine administration. Scientific Reports, 9(1), 16073. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-019-52610-x

[14] Solinas, M., Belujon, P., Fernagut, P. O., Jaber, M., & Thiriet, N. (2019). Dopamine and addiction: What have we learned from 40 years of research. Journal of Neural Transmission (Vienna, Austria: 1996), 126(4), 481–516. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00702-018-1957-2

[15] Chayasirisobhon, S. (2020). Mechanisms of Action and Pharmacokinetics of Cannabis. The Permanente Journal, 25, 1–3. https://doi.org/10.7812/TPP/19.200

[16] Chen, D., Liu, Y., He, W., Wang, H., & Wang, Z. (2012). Neurotransmitter-precursor-supplement intervention for detoxified heroin addicts. Journal of Huazhong University of Science and Technology. Medical Sciences = Hua Zhong Ke Ji Da Xue Xue Bao. Yi Xue Ying De Wen Ban = Huazhong Keji Daxue Xuebao. Yixue Yingdewen Ban, 32(3), 422–427. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11596-012-0073-z

[17] Sole, M. J., Benedict, C. R., Myers, M. G., Leenen, F. H., & Anderson, G. H. (1985). Chronic dietary tyrosine supplements do not affect mild essential hypertension. Hypertension (Dallas, Tex.: 1979), 7(4), 593–596. https://doi.org/10.1161/01.hyp.7.4.593

[18] van de Rest, O., Bloemendaal, M., de Heus, R., & Aarts, E. (2017). Dose-Dependent Effects of Oral Tyrosine Administration on Plasma Tyrosine Levels and Cognition in Aging. Nutrients, 9(12), 1279. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu9121279

Leave a comment

Open tab

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published

Related articles

dopamines function dopamine what does it do dopamines benefits

May 23, 2024

Master your motivation: dopamine’s function and benefits explained

Wondering what dopamine is and how it can help your reward-seeking behaviour and motivation? Here's the ultimate guide to your reward and pleasure chemical dopamine, and its supplementation, benefits and safety.

Oct 6, 2023

How to increase dopamine? Try these 5 natural dopamine boosters

Discover how to boost your reward and pleasure chemical dopamine. Try these 5 research-backed natural dopamine boosters to help regulate your motivation and alertness.
dopamine vs endorphins what releases endorphins what do endorphins do endorphins and dopamine are endorphins neurotransmitters

Aug 4, 2023

Endorphins vs dopamine: The best ways to boost your happy chemicals.

Endorphins and dopamine bring positive emotions. How do they differ? Find what releases endorphins and dopamine
anti-dopamine parenting dopamine and sugar cravings dopamine and screen timethe role of dopamine dopamine and motivation

Jul 24, 2023

The role of dopamine in anti-dopamine parenting: facts VS opinion

Learn more about anti-dopamine parenting, discover dopamine’s true role, and how it benefits us.

Search

Shopping Cart