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Amino Acid Precautions from The Diet Cure by Julia Ross

Amino Acid Precautions

You should consult a physician before taking any amino acids if:

• You have lupus.

• You have a serious physical illness.

• You have severe liver or kidney damage

• You have an inborn error of amino acid metabolism (e.g., PKU)

• You have an overactive thyroid or Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.

• You have an ulcer (aminos may be too acidic)

• You are pregnant

• You are taking many medications.

• You have schizophrenia or other mental illness.

If you:

You should consult a physician before taking:

Have high blood pressure

Tyrosine, DL-phenylalanine, L-phenylalanine

Take MAO inhibitors

Tyrosine, DL-phenylalanine, L-phenylalanine, L-tryptophan, 5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP)

Are hyperthyroid (or for some who have Hashimoto’s thyroiditis)

Tyrosine, DL-phenylalanine, L-phenylalanine

Get migraine headaches or have melanoma

Tyrosine, DL-phenylalanine, L-phenylalanine

Take SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors), SNRIs (serotonin/norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors) or other drugs, like phenterine, that can activate serotonin

L-tryptopan, 5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP)

Have bipolar disorder (e.g., manic depression)

L-glutamine (and fish or flax oil), tyrosine, DLPA, and phenylalanine (or SAM-e) can lift depression but can also trigger mania.

Have very low blood pressure

GABA, taurine, niacin

Have asthma

Tryptophan, 5-HTP, melatonin

The above precautions are taken with permission from The Diet Cure by Julia Ross (2012) pages 257-258. For permission to reprint, contact Julia Ross at

Amino Acids not needed long term

Amino Acids are rarely needed long term (three to twelve months is typical). Taking too many or taking any for too long can cause a return of the original negative symptoms. To monitor your need for them, stop taking the pertinent aminos. If your symptoms return, you can resume taking the aminos. If you feel better when you stop taking them, do not resume taking them. You have received the maximum benefit.

If you experience discomfort of any kind after taking aminos, stop taking them.  For contraindications, please read the warnings under individual amino acids. Before taking any supplements consult your health care provider, especially if you are under medical supervision.