Phenylethylamine or PEA is produced in the brain from L-Phenylalanine and is said to be involved in regulating mood, concentration, energy and stress. Phenylethylamine is found naturally in chocolate to some degree and is associated with the release of norepinephrine and dopamine. Speculation has formed that PEA is the reason chocolate is sometimes linked to feelings of love, but it seems that this is not exactly the case because it is metabolized too rapidly. PEA’s structure has been modified to form numerous other compounds to which it is related. It is even found in some diet pills and weight lifting supplements, usually in amounts below 500 mg. It is possible that PEA can elevate blood pressure, glucose levels and dopamine levels, which can be dangerous to certain individuals.
PEA should only be used under the advice of a physician and should not be combined with MAOI’s or used while pregnant or nursing.