Tyrosine is a non-essential amino acid required for the production of several critical hormones and neurotransmitters including dopamine, epinephrine, norepinephrine (noradrenaline), and dihydroxyphenylalanine (L-Dopa).
Tyrosine has been documented to significantly improve cognition in the presence of an acute stressor, such as high intensity exercise. Acute stressors tend to deplete norepinephrine and lead to stress-induced memory deficits. Tyrosine counters this depletion by acutely increasing the production of noradrenaline and dopamine, which results in improved attention, focus, and cognitive performance.
Additionally, dopamine is typically associated with the “reward center” of the brain, meaning higher dopamine levels equate to feelings of joy, euphoria, and happiness. Furthermore, greater concentrations of dopamine also tend to improve sociability (good for introverts) and reduce the sensation of pain in the body, potentially leading to improved athletic performance.
To take advantage of Tyrosine’s cognitive and mood-elevating effects, consume between 500-2000mg approximately 30-60 minutes before any sort of acute stressor (i.e. when you’d normally take your pre workout).