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5-HIAA (5-hydroxy indole acetic acid) is the main breakdown product of serotonin. The quantitative measurement in the urine that an individual excretes in a 24-hour period indicates how much serotonin is being made in the body during that time.
Certain foods and medicines must be avoided for a day or two before, and on the day of, the urine collection, since they can cause false test results. These are bananas, pineapple and its juice, red plums, avocado, walnuts, kiwi fruit, tomatoes, various cough medicines, muscle relaxing medicines, acetaminophen (Tylenol), caffeine, fluorouracil, iodine solutions, phenacetin, MOA inhibitors (certain antidepressant drugs), isoniazid and phenothiazine drugs (Compazine, Thorazine).
Iodine: A essential mineral that is an integral part of the thyroid hormones, thyroxin and triiodothyronine which have important metabolic roles and govern basal metabolism. The best known iodine deficiency symptom is goiter. Other iodine deficiency problems are reduced vitality, hypothyroidism, inability to think clearly, low resistance to infection, loss of control of the muscles of the mouth resulting in mouth contortion and drooling, defective teeth, tendency to obesity and cretinism which is a congenital abnormal condition marked by physical stunting and mental deficiency.
Serotonin: A phenolic amine neurotransmitter (C10H12N2O) that is a powerful vasoconstrictor and is found especially in the brain, blood serum and gastric membranes of mammals. Considered essential for relaxation, sleep, and concentration.