SAM-e Information

SAM-e and Depression

SAM-e Pros and Cons

S-adenosylmethionine (SAM) Molecule

SAM-e Information

SAM-e is the popular name for S-adenosylmethionine, a substance that our bodies produce naturally by combining the essential amino acid methionine, with adenosine triphosphate (ATP), the major source of cellular energy.

SAM-e is found in all human cells and is a methyl donor involved in the making of dozens of important compounds in the body. For example, SAMe plays a role in cell maintenance and nerve function. It is also involved in the making of genetic material, known as DNA, and cartilage as well as being instrumental in the detoxification of drugs and harmful compounds. In addition, it helps produce and break down brain chemicals such as serotonin, melatonin, and dopamine.

Some experts point out that levels of SAMe tend to decline with age. Moreover, it is important to note that both folic acid and vitamin B12 are required for the synthesis of SAM-e, as well as methionine.

As a supplement, SAM-e is worthy of attention. It is used in connection with a variety of conditions including osteoarthritis, depression, fibromyalgia, and certain liver disorders.

This webpage will cover its role in depression along with SAM-e pros and cons.

For SAM-e information and Osteoarthritis, please click here: SAMe and Osteoarthritis

SAM-e Information - Depression

Is SAM-e Effective for Depression?

SAM-e Pros and Cons …….. Depression

SAM-e does come with both pros and cons, therefore, will start with the pros and end with the cons.

Is Sam-e an effective supplement for depression? It appears to be an effective natural anti-depressant based on a number of clinical studies.

In fact, both Italy and Russia use it to treat depression. Moreover, in Italy, SAM-e outsells Prozac even though insurance companies only cover Prozac.

Keep in mind that in many European countries, SAM-e is a prescription medication. However, in the United States SAM-e is available as a nonprescription nutritional supplement.

SAM-e Information - Depression

How does it work?

SAM-e appears to boost levels of important brain compounds such as serotonin, dopamine, and phosphatidylserine. In addition, SAM-e enhances serotonin and dopamine as it facilitates their binding to the proper receptor sites in the brain. Serotonin and dopamine are two very important compounds that are responsible for controlling mood.

SAM-e Information Depression

Is there any evidence of efficacy?

Indeed, there are numerous studies in regards to SAM-e and depression showing positive results. According to the well-renowned tome entitled Nutraceuticals The Complete Encyclopedia of Supplements, Herbs, Vitamins, and Healing Foods written by Arthur J. Roberts, MD., Mary E. O’Brien, M.D., and Genell Subak-Sharpe, M.S.:

"A large analysis of several studies looking at its effectiveness in treating depression, including more than one thousand patients, showed that those receiving SAM-e experienced 17 to 38 percent more improvements than those taking a placebo. The improvement was comparable to, and in some cases exceeded what is expected from some prescription anti-depressants. SAM-e is also faster-acting than many prescription anti-depressants." (page 346)

SAM-e Information - Depression

What are the cons of using SAM-e?

Before we move on to the cons of SAM-e, we have one last noteworthy comment to make about the pros. SAM-e seems to be very safe, with no significantly adverse side effects reported in the literature. Now, with that being said, let's move on to SAM-e cons.

  • SAM-e is not recommended for individuals who suffer from bipolar disorder depression.

  • A small number of people have experienced side effects such as nausea and gastrointestinal disturbances as result of taking high doses. However, some experts point out taking enteric-coated tablets should help alleviate heartburn.

  • Individuals on prescription medications should speak with a physician before taking SAM-e supplements for possible drug interactions.

  • Individuals with health conditions should speak with a physician before taking SAM-e supplements.

  • Pregnant or nursing women should always consult a physician before taking any type of supplements.

    SAM-e Information

    Tips on Choosing a SAM-e Supplement

    1. Select a supplement produced at pharmaceutical GMP compliant facilities. It is important to note that dietary supplements are not highly regulated by the FDA in the U.S. and, as such, manufacturers do not have to guarantee the safety, effectiveness, or even the true content of their products.

    In fact, consumers only have a 1 in 5 chance of buying a product that contains what is stated on the label or one that does not harbor contaminates!

    Pharmaceutical GMP compliant facilities adhere to the same stringent requirements as pharmaceutical drugs.

    2. Select a SAM-e supplement that is enteric coated because this nutrient can be destroyed by stomach acids. Enteric coated protects the ingredients as they pass through the stomach acid juices and into the small intestine, where the coating dissolves and the ingredients are absorbed to nourish your cells and organs.

    SAM-e Information - Depression

    Featured SAMe Product

    One company that manufactures a SAM-e supplement that meets all of the aforementioned requirements --and more is Xtend-Life Natural Products from New Zealand. Their product called Neuro-Natural Serenity contains SAM-e as well as many other powerful and crucial nutrients needed for healthy brain function.

    For example, it also contains hops, an herb widely used to help relieve feelings of nervousness and irritability ...and vinpocetine, an extract from the periwinkle plant that provides many benefits to the brain by helping chemical signaling between nerve cells and improving the use of oxygen by the brain and, as such, improving the availability of energy. In fact, Neuro Natural Serenity contains 43 active ingredients and it comes with an unprecedented guarantee!

    Neuro-Natural Serenity is formulated by a highly credentialed scientific team that can blend these ingredients perfectly to ensure maximum benefits, but as importantly that do not interact adversely.

    The company also uses only standardized herbal extracts, the purest herbal extracts with the highest quality and therapeutic benefits, and they adhere to strict pharmaceutical GMP compliance, which is the toughest in the industry. Plus, Neuro Natural Serenity is enteric coated for maximum health benefits.

    We here at Nutritional-Supplement-Educational-Centre have friends who have been taking this product and achieved excellent results.

    To Your Health!

    The Editors


    Much more than SAM-e Information can be found at our Health Supplement Guide webpage

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