Tryptophan is an essential amino acid and is used by the brain to produce serotonin, one of the body’s major calmants and sleep chemicals. L-Tryptophan was a most popular and successful antidepressant and is found in cottage cheese, milk products, meat, fish, fowl, bananas, dried dates, peanuts and most other protein-rich foods. It is now only prescribable by hospital specialists and registered doctors because it was linked to a potentially fatal blood disease. This was following a contaminated batch supplied by one single Japanese manufacturer. Despite many other trials showing tryptophan to be safe , the pharmaceutical industry took advantage to take this easily available and extremely inexpensive supplement off the market, thereby requiring the increased sales of more artificial and expensive drugs. Sometimes I despair.