Feeling stressed or distracted? Tyrosine can help. This popular supplement found in our pre-workout, Stammpede, can help enhance attention, focus, alertness and even mood. You can find tyrosine in food, but in order to acquire all the desired benefits, it’s best to obtain it from purified supplement form.
What Is Tyrosine?
Before we get into the nitty-gritty of its benefits, let us go over what tyrosine is exactly.
Along with being a nootropic, tyrosine is a supplement in our pre-workout, Stammpede, that is considered an amino acid and is naturally produced by the body. It’s produced by phenylalanine, another important amino acid that makes a number of molecules that help send signals to different parts of the body. (1)
Getting enough tyrosine in your diet can make a world’s difference in the function of your brain and your body. Why is this? As it turns out, tyrosine is a precursor to some of the most important neurotransmitters in the brain. Your brain uses tyrosine to turn it into 3 major neurotransmitters. (2)
Dopamine (DA): Dopamine is a key neurotransmitter responsible for the regulation of mood and motivation.
Norepinephrine (NE): Also known as noradrenaline (NA), NE functions in the brain as both a hormone and neurotransmitter.
Adrenaline: Also known as epinephrine, adrenaline is a neurotransmitter and hormone produced by the adrenal glands that participate in the sympathetic nervous system’s “fight-or-flight” response.
Tyrosine is also an important factor in the production of thyroid hormones. These hormones are produced by the thyroid gland and help regulate metabolism. (3)
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Putting your body under any kind of stress, whether it be mental or physical, can start to drain your neurotransmitters. Making sure you have enough tyrosine in your system can avoid depleted NT levels by replenishing them right away. (4)
Tyrosine plays key roles in a number of major brain chemicals that can benefit you in a number of different ways. So why should you be getting plenty of tyrosine in your diet?
Benefits of Tyrosine
Let’s take a look at some of the ways your brain and body can benefit from having tyrosine in your diet.
- Helps relieve stress and improve focus
- Improves mood
- May help with depression
#1: Helps Relieve Stress and Improve Focus
The more stressed you are, the more norepinephrine your brain is using. Stress can deplete this neurotransmitter, causing your focus, attention, memory and general cognitive function to suffer.
In times of stress, you can count on tyrosine. In this way, tyrosine is considered a nootropic by providing your brain with the tools it needs to perform at optimal levels.
The source of stress can be a number of things, even environmental stressors. One study examined rodents who were exposed to cold and the results showed that it impaired their memory due to the decrease of neurotransmitter function. (5) Interestingly enough, when the rodents were given tyrosine, the decrease in neurotransmitters (mainly norepinephrine) was reversed and their memory was restored.
Pretty crazy, right?
One study wanted to measure tyrosine’s impact on cognitive flexibility (the ability to switch between tasks or thoughts). 22 subjects were given either a tyrosine supplement or placebo. They were then given a test that measured their cognitive flexibility. Compared to the placebo group, tyrosine promoted cognitive flexibility. (6)
#2: Improves Mood
Dopamine is 1 of the 3 neurotransmitters turns into. Dopamine is the key neurotransmitter responsible for mood, pleasure and motivation. It can improve mood specifically when it interacts with serotonin.
Serotonin is often associated with positive mood and as it turns out, reduced levels of serotonin in the brain can be the cause of decreased mood and even memory problems.
#3: May Help With Depression
The symptoms of depression can begin to occur when the neurotransmitters in your brain become unbalanced. You’d think one tyrosine naturally increases the production of certain neurotransmitters in your brain, it would be considered to be an effective antidepressant -- but the research results are mixed.
Sources of Tyrosine
If you think you need more tyrosine in your diet, you can get it from foods such as chicken, turkey, fish and cheese. However, the tyrosine found in food will most likely be sent to your muscles just like the other amino acids you consume. If you want the cognitive benefits of tyrosine, you’re better off finding a purified tyrosine supplement.
One way to get more purified tyrosine in your diet is by consuming our pre-workout supplement, Stammpede. Tyrosine is taken in doses anywhere from 500 mg to 2,000 mg 30-60 minutes before exercise. Stammpede sits right around there, providing 1,500 mg per serving.
If you find your physical or mental performance breaking down prior to stress or major event, try supplementing with tyrosine around 60 minutes beforehand.