The question was:

What are good ways to lose weight for people being mentally active? Are there any good diets for people being mentally active which won't affect the everyday brain activities?

My answer was:

You may try 5-HTP which is precursor of serotonin and melatonin. It may be used as appetite suppressant. It is naturally occurring amino acids synthesized from another amino acid (L-tryptophan), so you can't get it from the food, however supplements are made from extracts of the seeds of the African tree Griffonia simplicifolia.

Therefore studies suggest that 5-HTP may reduce eating behaviors, lessen caloric intake, and promote weight loss in obese individuals.

For example few small studies showed that 5-HTP can help people lose weightUMM. Some researchers believe that 5-HTP led people to feel more full after eating, so they ate less. A follow-up study found that those who took 5-HTP they've lost about 2% of body weight (non-diet period) and another 3% (dieted period) in comparison to those taking placebo who did not lose any weight.

Another study from 2009 claim that one subject who started on 5-HTP/carbidopa alone lost 24.4% of initial body weight over 6 months.

It may work in similar way to SSRI (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors), which acts on the serotonin pathway, so it may affect your mood (in a good way, since it's also anti-depressant, so for side effects of SSRIs, please check on NHS, NLM).

5-HTP has not been extensively studied for long-term use, however it's considered safe (in comparison with other antiobesity agents), but it is known to have interaction with other medications (e.g. MAOIs, SSRIs, etc.), so:

be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

It is also not advised to not take it for a longer period, e.g. for a month every few months, and it may lower your sexual activity.

In general the majority of people will only experience a few mild side effects when taking it.

If interested to try, check some brands on Amazon.

For sugar substitute, you can consider eating natural fruits, use natural honey or Stevia as a noncaloric natural sweetener for teas and weight-loss blends (it's extracted from the leaves of the plant species).

My question was accepted by OP, therefore it meet the criteria and the answer was correct according by the questioner. However it was removed by mod. The answer was accepted with two up-votes, and 3 down-votes.

There were some comments which was asking mods to delete the answer:

This answer should be deleted.

without giving any support for their claim.

Then next concern was (same person):

You are prescribing appetite suppressant where the first line of therapy is dietary modification and exercise. Also they are not indicated in this BMI range. I can just list another 100 reasons why this answer is completely wrong.

However the site is worldwide and first line of therapy can be vary per country and there is nothing wrong in proposing alternative supplement which is backed up by studies and it's used worldwide as effective anti-obesity agent, secondly questioner mentioned that he already talked with a specialist, so he was already aware of available therapies. And at last, all my claims were supported by reliable sources.

The next concerns (by same person) were unclear:

Dude 5-HT the thing that you linked is just an amino acid precursor I really don't know what are you talking about here. It has nothing to do with appetite.

Google SSRIs and weight gain and see how many of them have weight gain as a side effect

Ok don't google, use "up to date" or read a paper about SSRIs and weight gain. Good luck

I'm just waiting for an admin to delete your answer because your last edit just added another 100 false points. And I can't list them here I only have 500 characters

Above concerns were no way supported by any reliable claim or link, but it sounds like a simple trolling (by the user with no single Q/A on the site or rep). How my answer could consist 100 false points?

Please clarify the exact reason of removal (which site rule was broken) or how I can improve my answer.

  • 2
    I had answers with upvotes and accepted by the OP that got removed. The best way to avoid such issues is not to write answers. Apr 4, 2016 at 19:14
  • 1
    I think mods should think before and see that somebody is trolling (with no rep) who's saying 'This answer should be deleted.', blah, blah, blah, or saying 'you've not right, read more or google-it', 'I'm just waiting for an admin to delete your answer because your last edit just added another 100 false points. And I can't list them here I only have 500 characters ', without actually giving any single support from their side, but just talking rubbish.
    – kenorb
    Apr 4, 2016 at 19:21
  • I think it should be noted that those comments were not on the revision of the answer you posted, but for an earlier one where you called 5-HTP an SSRI and antidepressant and at least seemed to imply that SSRIs help with weight loss: "in general SSRIs are considered safe (in comparison with other antiobesity agents)". Without that knowledge, the comments you quoted about SSRIs and weight gain don't make sense.
    – YviDe
    Apr 4, 2016 at 19:30
  • "Check out some brands on Amazon" sounds like, "hey, buy some product that I'm advertising (directly or indirectly)". Not good. Additionally, you cherry-picked your quotes, instead of actually summarizing the information. You completely disregarded the warnings in your own sources: 1) People with high blood pressure or diabetes should talk to their doctor before taking 5-HTP. 2) If you take antidepressants, you should not take 5-HTP (see "Possible Interactions" section). 3) People with liver disease, pregnant women, and women who are breastfeeding should not take 5-HTP.
    – Dave Liu
    Feb 16, 2018 at 20:35
  • 1
    You demonstrate a psychological bias toward things you've personally experimented with, which though logical, is a psychological fallacy. What you experience is not a substitute for clinical trials and rigorously prepared experiments. Unfortunately, academia is suffering from the quality of experiment preparation and replication these days, so examining the methodology becomes ever more important.
    – Dave Liu
    Feb 16, 2018 at 20:42

1 Answer 1


My question was accepted by OP, therefore it meet the criteria and the answer was correct according by the questioner.

It is true that the OP felt the answer was acceptable, but the OP is not the only person on the site whose opinion matters. If the answer failed to meet criteria established for acceptable answers, it is subject to removal.

This is true on all the SE/SO sites I'm active on. If there are standards for answers (a site that would compare with this one for such requirements would be Skeptics), and an answer does not meet the standards - which can be different from community to community, and even change over time - it is deleted.

Perhaps there were unaddressed errors in your answer. Maybe your references did not support your assertions. Maybe there were conflicting statements. Whatever the cause(s), it's not exactly clear from the comment thread. But I highly doubt the answer was removed simply because one user suggested it. Maybe it was removed because you cited yourself as a reliable source:

I don't need to Google unreliable sources and reports from random individuals, since I've direct experience and expertise with the supplement (also I know other people who taken it) so I know exactly how does it work, what side effects are, and that should be enough. I didn't see any side effects at all and in my opinion it's natural and very safe supplement.

You're not a reliable source simply because you've used something and you have friends who've used something. There's science behind medicine and you can't refuse to cite a source because you have an unsubstantiated opinion about it.

This was not deleted by the community, or the community would be in the position to answer your question. A moderator deleted it; a moderator should be the one to explain the action so that you and other users can understand the guidelines for answers which must be met in order for them to be acceptable to the site, not to the OP. That argument just doesn't hold water.

  • But we have post notice for bad answers, right? Put it there, then comment what's wrong with the answer so that everyone can learn?
    – Ooker
    May 16, 2016 at 4:22

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