OBJECTIVES: Neurotransmitters regulate mood, attention vigilance and other clinical symptoms linked with depression. Various medications ameliorate symptoms of depression and mood disorders by interference with the serotonic metabolism. Serotonin metabolism depends on nutritional cofactors such as pyridoxin together with essential mineral and trace elements. Both, inflammation and metabolic conditions seem to affect the bioavailability of serotonin crucially. We hypothesized that serotonin supply depends on relevant gastrointestinal precursor absorption and on the availability of nutritive antiinflammatory cofactors.
METHODS: We performed a randomized placebo controlled clinical trial in healthy participants to study the bioavailabilty of ingredients of the multivitamin and trace element LaVita' in a prospective randomized placebo controlled double blind trial to establish the mood ameliorating potential. Serotonin and its precursor tryptophan were measured in dry blood samples. Serum parameters like chromium and zinc, as well as vitamin D, vitamin B3 and B6 were determined before intake, and after 3 months and 6 months consumption of the test substances.
RESULTS: After 3 months a slight increase of tryptophan (p=0.059) and a significant increase of serum serotonin (p < 0.013) was observed in the verum group. After 6 months the verum group showed a highly significant mean increase in niacin (p < 0.001) and the cofactors of serotonin metabolism pyridoxin (p=0.03), chromium p < 0.01), and zinc (p < 0.001). Serotonin levels droped after 6 months indicating a low risk for overdosing.
CONCLUSION: We conclude that a continuous supply with ingredients from the natural source compound LaVita' may contribute to mood improving neurotransmitter activity.