DL-Phenylalanine Background and Benefits
Phenylalanine is an amino acid that is commonly abbreviated as F or Phe. All phenylalanine molecules have the chemical formula C6H5CH2CH(NH2)COOH, although their exact structure may vary. Phenylalanine exists in two different forms, which are called D-phenylalanine and L-phenylalanine. These forms are known as enantiomers of phenylalanine, which are structural mirror images of each other. The structures of phenylalanine were established during the late 19th century, beginning in 1879.
L-phenylalanine is an essential amino acid, meaning that it is necessary for human life but can’t be synthesized in the body. The DNA codons for L-phenylalanine are UUC and UUU. L-phenylalanine is primarily used to synthesize proteins, although it also serves many biochemical functions directly. It has many dietary sources, especially meat and dairy products. Additional sources of L-phenylalanine include leafy green vegetables.
D-phenylalanine isn’t an essential nutrient, although it is one of the few D enantiomers of amino acids that are pharmacologically active. This activity is generally the result of inhibiting the action of enzymes. D-phenylalanine generally isn’t found in nature and is produced only in the laboratory.
A mixture of more than one enantiomer of the same chemical is known as a racemic mixture. Phenylalanine is commercially available in racemic form, which is commonly known as DL-Phenylalanine. Each enantiomer of phenylalanine provides separate health benefits.
Uses of DL-Phenylalanine
The health uses for DL- phenylalanine generally deal with its effect on neurotransmitters. Typical applications include the relief of discomfort, support of healthy energy levels and the management of stress.
DL-phenylalanine may help to manage stress through its role in the production of norepinephrine.
The management of discomfort is one of the most common uses of DL-phenylalanine. Researchers believe that the regulation of the endogenous analgesia system is the primary mechanism of this effect.
DL-phenylalanine may help to manage low moods by supplementing the effects of dopamine.
Some research shows that DL-phenylalanine may support the production of neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine. These chemicals help to maintain your normal energy levels.
Signs You May Need DL-Phenylalanine
Chronic discomfort is one of the most significant signs that you may need DL-phenylalanine supplements, especially when it’s the result of an infection or injury. Low energy levels and sleep disturbances are also an indication that you may benefit from DL-phenylalanine. Conditions that deplete the body’s natural supply of neurotransmitters may mean that you need DL-phenylalanine. These conditions include stress and the use of drugs such as caffeine and nicotine.
Synonyms and Similar Forms of DL-Phenylalanine