Tryptophan is an essential amino acid, meaning that the body can not produce it. You should take tryptophan through your diet. Fortunately tryptophan foods are much like meat, seeds, nuts,
eggs and dairy products.
The human body uses tryptophan to synthesize proteins. When eating foods high in tryptophan, it is converted into vitamin B3 /niacin/ by the liver, resulting in balancing levels of this vitamin in the blood stream. Tryptophan plays an important role in the body’s production of serotonin and melatonin. Serotonin helps regulate sleep, appetite and mood. When we eat foods rich in tryptophan, serotonin levels in the body rise. Therefore, tryptophan is used in treatment of various conditions, such as depression, anxiety and insomnia. Diet low in tryptophan, could lead to a deficiency of vitamin B3.
Which are foods high in tryptophan ?
A list of foods high in tryptophan
- Pumpkin seeds. Pumpkin seeds are a natural source of tryptophan, containing 0.576 g. Tryptophan per 100 grams.Pumpkin seeds which have been roasted, with or without the addition of salt are at a slightly lower content of tryptophan.
- Meat – red, and dry meat, such as beef, mutton, chicken and turkey are high tryptophan foods.
- Cheese is part of food rich in tryptophan. You can use different cheeses – cottage cheese, cheddar, Swiss cheese, tofu and others. Gruyere, Swiss version, is very rich in tryptophan foods.
- Legumes. Legumes, such as beans, peas, peanuts and lentils, not only offer fiber, but also a rich source of tryptophan. In addition to the actual content of tryptophan, legumes contain vitamins and iron which are required by the body to convert the amino acid at niacin.
- Other foods high in tryptophan include bananas, all nuts, fish, eggs, yogurt, sesame and sunflower seeds. Consuming red and brown rice will help to increase the tryptophan in the blood stream.
Attention: Before you follow any diet, consult your doctor.