Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started
My Medicine

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Font Size

Tyrosine: Uses and Risks

Tyrosine is an amino acid, a substance that helps build proteins in your body. It helps form important brain chemicals that affect mood and sleep.

Why do people take tyrosine?

Tyrosine is a treatment for people with a rare genetic disorder called PKU.

As a supplement, tyrosine may help people who are tired because of lack of sleep, some research suggests. It seems to make them more alert.

Some children and adults take tyrosine for ADHD. But studies have not shown that it helps. Tyrosine supplements don't appear to work for depression, either.

People take tyrosine for other reasons, ranging from easing PMS symptoms to boosting libido. For now, we don't know if tyrosine helps with these conditions.

There's no standard dose for tyrosine. Ask your doctor for advice.

Can you get tyrosine naturally from foods?

Tyrosine is in meats, fish, dairy products, eggs, oats, wheat, beans, and nuts.

What are the risks?

Tell your doctor about any supplements you're taking, even if they're natural. That way, your doctor can check on any potential side effects or interactions with medications.

Side effects. Tyrosine supplements can cause insomnia, restlessness, palpitations, headache, upset stomach, and heartburn.

Risks. Tyrosine may worsen thyroid problems or Graves' disease. There hasn't been enough research yet to know if tyrosine is safe for pregnant or breastfeeding women.

Interactions. If you take any medicines regularly, talk to your doctor before you start using tyrosine supplements. They could interact with medicines for thyroid problems and Parkinson's disease.

Supplements are not regulated by the FDA.

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by David Kiefer, MD on February 18, 2015

Vitamins and
Lifestyle Guide

Which Nutrients
Are You Missing?

Learn More

Today on WebMD

vitamin rich groceries
Do you know your vitamin ABCs?
St Johns wart
Ease hot flashes and other symptoms.
Are you getting enough?
Take your medication
Wonder pill or overkill?
fruits and vegetables
Woman sleeping
Woman staring into space with coffee

Send yourself a link to download the app.

Loading ...

Please wait...

This feature is temporarily unavailable. Please try again later.


Now check your email account on your mobile phone to download your new app.