Melatonin is a hormone naturally produced in the pineal gland in the brain. Melatonin plays a key role in regulating the body’s circadian rhythms, or sleep-wake cycles. Accordingly, the pineal gland produces more melatonin when the sun goes down, and levels drop at dawn. In increasing the level of melatonin in the body and sleep better, according to the website “themanual“.
Melatonin supplements are a common way to increase melatonin concentration and possibly improve the quality and quantity of sleep and are safe for adults and children in doses ranging from 0.5 to 5 milligrams. However, melatonin supplements may cause drowsiness, nausea, and dizziness, and can interfere with some medications.
And if you’re looking to support your body’s natural melatonin levels but don’t want to rely on supplements, there are many sleep aids that contain melatonin.
Adding any of these foods that are high in melatonin to your dinner plate or bedtime snack routine may help regulate your sleep patterns over time and help you get more restful sleep.
Although there is little nutritional data on the specific concentration of melatonin in different foods, the following foods are known to be high in melatonin.
8 foods rich in melatonin that help you sleep better
Use warm milk as a relaxing drink before bed. Many people find that it acts as a mild sedative and promotes sleep. Each cup of milk provides 106 mg of tryptophan (38% of the RDI) and is also one of the best dietary sources of melatonin.
Several types of nuts contain melatonin, such as almonds and cashews, but pistachios are especially high in melatonin. Like other nuts, pistachios also contain fiber, omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin E and antioxidants, so they make for a nutritious, filling snack.
Grapes are high in melatonin. The concentration of melatonin varies based on grape variety, growing conditions, and climate, but red grapes tend to be the best source of melatonin.
Mushrooms contain both tryptophan and melatonin, making them a great sleep-promoting food.
This staple is high in melatonin, so it may help regulate your sleep cycle.
Whole grains are a staple in some popular diets, but they can offer many health benefits and contain fiber, B vitamins, and several important minerals that may also aid sleep.
Whole oats are rich in melatonin. In addition, each cup of oatmeal contains 94 mg of tryptophan, which is 33% of the recommended daily amount for a person weighing 70 kg, which helps in getting a perfect sleep.
Eggs are a complete source of protein, which means they contain all the essential amino acids, as well as plenty of other vital nutrients like vitamin D, folic acid, selenium, and riboflavin. Eggs may also support sleep, as they are rich in melatonin and tryptophan.
Rice not only contains melatonin and tryptophan, but also has carbohydrate content to improve sleep. One study found that after implementing a rice-based diet, people experienced a significant improvement in sleep quality and reduced stress.