Taurine. How This Particular Supplement Can Improve Your Adrenals

By: Michael Lam, MD, MPH

Introduction to Taurine

Eggs are a good source of taurineTaurine is an important amino acid in our body. It is found mostly in our central nervous system, skeletal muscle, and in greater concentration in our heart and brain. It is made from two sulfur containing amino acids called methionine and cysteine.

Methoinine and cysteine are found in egg yolk and meat as well.

Taurine is commonly found in animal protein and not in Vegetable protein. Vegetarians with a low intake of protein may have difficulty producing this amino acid in their bodies. In addition to meat, it is found in abundance in shell fish. Vegetarians as well as those on a low fat diet will have to be mindful on the amount of this nutrient that is consumed.

Cardiovascular Disease

In the cell, taurine keeps potassium and magnesium inside the cell while keeping excessive sodium out. In this sense it works like a diuretic. But unlike prescription diuretics, it is not a cellular poison. It does not act against the kidney, but improves kidney function instead. Like many other nutrients, it is very useful in fighting tissue swelling and fluid accumulation. People with heart failure, liver disease , late stage ovarian cancer, congestive heart failure frequently have unwanted fluid accumulation inside their bodies and people who take long plane flights usually have slight fluid retention.

Taurine has been very successfully used to treat people with high blood pressure. When excessive fluid is normalized, blood pressure becomes normalized. It functions to dampen the sympathetic nervous system, thereby relieving arterial spasm. When blood vessels relax, the body’s blood pressure will fall.

There have been studies showing the positive effectiveness of this nutrient on heart failure. Aside from having diuretic properties, taurine is able to strengthen the heart muscles and maintain proper calcium balance. Together with Coq10 and carnitine, taurine is able to regulate the heart’s contractility and guard against toxic threat of chemotherapeutic drugs such as adriamycin (doxorubicin).

Working together with magnesium, it also is able to regulate heart rhythm and help to stabilize it.

Women’s Health and Taurine

Taurine performs important functionsTaurine is an important amino acid in the female body. The female hormone estradiol depresses the formation of taurine in the liver. Women who are on estrogen replacement, birth control pill, or those suffering from excessive estrogen (this is a widespread condition commonly called estrogen dominance) may need more taurine. Also making it helpful in clearing excessive fluid retention during menstrual period.

Furthermore, synthetic estrogen replacement therapy blocks the production of taurine in the body , as well as in the case of chemotherapy or the lack of good bacteria in the intestinal tract.


Taurine functions in the brain and the heart to stabilize the cell membrane by regulating the electro-chemical forces. It tends to inhibit and modulate neurotransmitters in the brain and helps to stabilize cell membranes. It is beneficial to the gall bladders, eyes, blood vessels, and has some antioxidant and detoxifying activities. Because it aids the movement of potassium, sodium, and calcium in and out of the cell, it has been used as a supplementation for epileptics as well as for people who have uncontrollable facial twitches.

Taurine has neurological benefitsBetween 1 and 3 g a day, there is usually no problem.

However at a dosage of more than 5 g a day, taurine may occasionally cause loose stool. The general dosage for people who have edema, high blood pressure, and seizure disorders range from 0.5 – 4 g a day. In high doses, taurine may increase slightly the secretion of stomach acid.

Taurine and stress

The body has a complex system of responses that occur from a systemic and organ specific approach known as the neuroendometabolic (NEM) stress response. Its primary function is to manage and regulate the oncoming stresses in our lives that become a threat to our health and survival. Everybody handles stress differently, some are better able to cope while others are not. Taurine is an amino acid that has relaxing properties and it can assist in calming and relaxing the body from elevated levels of a hormone called adrenaline. When stress isn’t managed well or the body isn’t allowed time to recover, it will produce the dysregulation of the NEM complex that will precipitate multiple decapitating symptoms.

Eggs are a good source of taurine

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  • Vaisakh says:

    Does taurine like carnitine has effect on thyroid gland ??

  • Wes says:

    Taurine did not have a calming effect on me. Quite the opposite actually, it made me feel jittery I Ike I drink a couple cups of coffee and increased my heart rate. It was not pleasant. Have you heard of this type of reaction?

  • Michelle says:

    Does taurine lower the hormones norepinephrine and epinephrine levels produced by the adrenal gland in the body?

    • Dr.Lam says:

      No, though taurine can have some calming properties in selected people that may indirectly helps that.

      Dr Lam

  • Brooke Pekkala says:

    I have read on reputable sites that taurine does indeed cross the blood brain barrier and attaches to the GABA receptors. True or not?

    • Dr.Lam says:

      Taurine does cross the blood brain barrier and can have a calming effect.

      Dr Lam

      • Peter says:

        Yes, which is why the article above should not say this:

        // However, because of its inability to cross the blood brain barrier, the use of taurine to treat people who are in a neurological dysfunctional state is limited. //

  • Irma Boh says:

    Thank you for your explanations.It helps me a lot.

  • Jimmy says:

    Hi Dr. Lam. I really enjoyed this article Should one be on the watch for synthetic taurine?

    • Newsletter says:

      Taurine is one of 2 amino acid that comes in only one form, L-taurine. Most people just use taurine or L-taurine interchangeably.

      Dr Lam

  • Alexian Moldan says:

    Taurine does seem to appear on most energy drinks, is that a good thing ? I drink at least one every three days.

    • Newsletter says:

      It is there as to give you a bit more energy as well as an anti-diuretic. Energy drink as a whole should be avoided. Stay with water with some lemon. Its free.

      Dr Lam.