Tuesday, June 15

What foods can help you sleep better because they are rich in tryptophan


Chicken and turkey are good sources of tryptophan.

Foto: Olya Kobruseva / Pexels

Tryptophan is an essential amino acid for the body. This means that we cannot produce it so we need to obtain it in the diet. Taking tryptophan can help you have a healthier and better quality sleep. This is why people with sleep problems benefit from the consumption of natural tryptophan in food.

The body uses tryptophan to help make melatonin and serotonin. The United States National Library of Medicine explains that melatonin helps regulate the sleep-wake cycle and it is believed that Serotonin helps regulate appetite, sleep, mood, and pain.

The content of tryptophan, as well as other nutrients, makes the consumption of certain foods considered helpful to fall asleep and sleep better.

Tryptophan-rich foods for dinner

Tryptophan is especially found in protein-rich foods.

According to WebMD, the recommended daily allowance (RDA) in the United States is 250 to 425 milligrams per day.

1. Milk

milk
Photo: Delphine Hourlay / Pexels

Whole milk is one of the greatest sources of tryptophan. It provides 732 milligrams per quart. 2% reduced fat milk provides 551 milligrams per quart.

2. Chicken and turkey

chicken
Photo: Marcin Kolacz / Pixabay

A pound of raw turkey meat has 410 milligrams per pound in its light portion, while dark meat contains 303 milligrams. Chicken contains 238 milligrams per pound in the light part and dark meat contains 256 milligrams.

3. Egg

avocado toast
Foto: Foodie Factor/Pexels

Eggs have about 210 mg of tryptophan for every 3.5 ounces. The whites are richer in tryptophan. In addition to tryptophan, eggs have other nutrients that can help you sleep better.

4. Fish

Fish
Photo: Shutterstock

One ounce of canned tuna can give you 472 milligrams of tryptophan.

5. Red beans

Beans with rice
Photo: Shutterstock

A 3.5-ounce serving of kidney beans has 215 mg of tryptophan.

6. Avena

oatmeal and strawberries
Photo: Shutterstock

One cup of prepared oatmeal provides 147 milligrams of tryptophan.

7. Cheese

cheese
Foto: Nastya Sensei / Pexels

Cheddar cheese contains 91 milligrams of tryptophan per ounce.

8. Peanuts

peanuts
Foto: Piviso/Pixabay

One ounce of peanuts provides 65 milligrams of tryptophan.

Other foods that also provide you with tryptophan are Protein isolate from soy, tofu, spirulina, spinach, pumpkin seeds, and sunflower seeds.

The importance of tryptophan

Tryptophan has the lowest concentration in the body of any amino acid. But it is necessary for a wide variety of functions such as maintenance of the body’s proteins, muscles, enzymes, and neurotransmitters.

The liver can also use tryptophan to make niacin (vitamin B3), which is necessary for energy metabolism and DNA production.

Low levels of tryptophan can negatively affect mood and cognition

Scientific research has shown that Those experiencing depression may have lower than normal tryptophan levels.

It has also been found that those with low tryptophan levels may experience higher levels of anxiety, tension, and nervousness in stressful situations. Low levels of this amino acid can also affect memory performance.

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