S-adenosyl methionine (SAMe)

What is S-adenosyl methionine?
S-adenosyl methionine, or SAMe, is a compound that derives from the amino acid methionine. SAMe is a dietary supplement that has only been available to American consumers since the 1990s.

What are the health benefits of S-adenosyl methionine?
As methionine plays a role in producing pleasure-related neurotransmitters such as dopamine and serotonin, SAMe is primarily associated with its ability to act as an antidepressant; certain studies have confirmed the efficacy of this use of the supplement. SAMe is also used to treat osteoarthritis, and liver damage, and is also being explored for it potential ability to treat Alzheimer’s disease, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in adults, fibromyalgia, and other central nervous system conditions.

What are the guidelines for taking S-adenosyl methionine?
It is recommended by some that SAMe be taken with vitamins B6 and B12 to maximize the efficacy of its therapeutic properties and to metabolize certain potentially harmful components such as homocysteine—which has been associated with the hardening and narrowing of the arteries.

Where can I find S-adenosyl methionine?
SAMe can be found online, health food stores, and in the offices of alternative medical practitioners.

Are there any precautions for taking S-adenosyl methionine?
Along with the presence of homocysteine, use of SAMe may lead to insomnia, diarrhea, anxiety, headaches, and allergic reactions. There have also been associations between SAMe and induction of mania.

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This entry was posted in Natural Health Dictionary, Supplements, Vitamins and Nutrients.