Until 1990 tryptophan was by far the most used natural sleep aid available on the market. In 1990 the United States Food and Drug Administration pulled all tryptophan from store shelves due to an abrupt outbreak of eosinophilic myalgia syndrome that occurred among some men and women who had shot the sleep aid. When the United States banned the substance many other countries quickly followed. Ultimately almost five thousand people reported getting sick and twenty 7 people died from the serious illness. The signs included muscle pain, severe joint pain, along with weakness. A lengthy investigation determined the issue was a polluted batch which was made by a Japanese business named Showa Denko KK, that had recently changed a generation process to incorporate genetically engineered bacteria. The ban remained in effect until 2001.
In February of 2001, the FDA removed the ban on selling tryptophan, but kept an importation restriction. This's the statement that they released:
"Based on the scientific research that is readily available at the current time, we cannot decide with certainty that the occurrence of EMS in vulnerable persons ingesting L-tryptophan supplements derives from the content of L tryptophan, an impurity found in the L tryptophan, or maybe a combination of the two in connection with other, as yet unknown, outside factors."
Since 2002, tryptophan is available once more in the United States and no reports of Eosinophilic myalgia syndrome were reported. There are definitely manufacturing businesses currently making good quality tryptophans. I believe it is healthy. It is a precursor of the sleep inducing substances serotonin & melatonin. This means it's the raw material which the mind uses to build these relaxing neurotransmitters. By taking it in supplement form we're creating a lot more available to produce the neurotransmitters that are employed to induce deep sleep.
Melatonin is currently the most popular and gluconite ingredients [sell ] well respected of the organic sleeping aids offered. It is an even more strong precursor to serotonin than is tryptophan. Melatonin also is much more affordable. I commonly will recommend melatonin to my clients as the first thing to try to resolve rest issues naturally. But one thing I've found is the fact that for reasons unknown the people who don't respond very well to melatonin can at times think it is effective. For many folks it's a valuable natural sleep aid, but tryptophan has never really regained the recognition that it at one time enjoyed before 1990.