Your Body Calls for Essential Amino Acid Tryptophan #AMCoffee

Your Body Can’t Make Tryptophan
Reminders that Make A Difference

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Remember that Thanksgiving Turkey dinner and a sleepy mode after that? Several things take place before we feel tired and sleepy. Tryptophan is one of them.

Being an essential amino acid – meaning our body cannot produce it on its own – tryptophan is an important part of our biological functioning, including organ formation, electric signal transportation, and being part of the protein block formation. Without Tryptophan, life would be impossible.

Fun Fact for You: Tryptophan abbreviation is a capital “T” in italicsT.

After absorbing tryptophan from the food, the body converts it to serotonin as a final product (there are many steps in-between to that conversion!) Serotonin is a hormone that transmits signals between nerve cells, causes blood vessels to narrow, changes our mood. Disruption in serotonin production can cause many other uninvited side-effects. But we can feed our bodies the foods that provide ample tryptophan amounts to our bodies.

Luckily, we have a great variety of food sources offering us tryptophan as part of the nutritional profile. Both vegans and carnivores can pick and choose what source to go after!

Turkey breast
Soy
Wheat
Pumpkin
Potato
Walnuts
Cauliflower
Cucumber
Mushroom
Leafy greens
Tomatos

Though turkey meat contains the most of the tryptophan per serving, other options are as important! Let’s break them down, one-by-one, to emphasize what is so unique to each food source that carries that precious tryptophan.

Things to keep in mind.

Eating foods high in tryptophan isn’t going to help mood or sleep. To get the most of tryptophan from food, you need to:

  • Eat tryptophan foods with some carbohydrates
  • Consume tryptophan with foods rich in iron, vitamin C, vitamin B6, magnesium, as they co-participate in chemistry of the body
  • Reduce cytokines levels which degrade tryptophan by eating more foods rich in antioxidants and fiber, and avoiding saturated and trans fats

What is a Cytokin?

Any of a number of substances, such as interferon, interleukin, and growth factors, that are secreted by certain cells of the immune system and have an effect on other cells.

“Cytokines are pro-inflammatory proteins involved in the immune response.   They are released when we are sick, and also in response to certain foods, like saturated fats and trans fats.   There are some proven ways to reduce cytokine levels, including getting more Omega 3, eating antioxidant-rich foods, reducing saturated fat intake, and getting more fiber.”

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Comments

  1. #AMCoffee well that explains thanksgiving when I eat turkey AND pumpkin pie and then want a nap.

  2. Laura, Celebrate Woman Today says:

    AM COFFEE – Sign In! HELLO, Everyone!

    Our bodies are such unique systems, making so many beautiful changes for us. Learning about different sides of our body and its transformation inside-out develops our support for it and raises our awareness of the complexity of what is being done under the surface.

    Feeding our body good foods is one of many things we could do to keep this sacred process easier and more fulfilled.

    So happy to see you today here! Come over when you can. AM Coffee is for early birds and not-so, too! It is open all-day-long, as we do have different schedules we live with.

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  3. Laura, Celebrate Woman Today says:
  4. Laura, Celebrate Woman Today says:

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    What Conditions Tryptophan Is Used For?

    Source webMD

    Tryptophan is used for insomnia, sleep apnea, depression, anxiety, facial pain, a severe form of premenstrual syndrome called premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD), smoking cessation, grinding teeth during sleep (bruxism), attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), Tourette’s syndrome, and to improve athletic performance.

  5. Laura, Celebrate Woman Today says:

    am coffee

    T & Soy Beans

    Soybeans are an excellent source of protein, and in fact the only vegetable with a complete protein. They’re also a great source of vitamin K, calcium, magnesium, iron and fiber. Soybeans are known to lower blood cholesterol level (LDL). Finally, soybeans are an enriched source of T, containing 0.048 grams per ounce.

  6. Laura, Celebrate Woman Today says:

    amcoffee

    T & Wheat

    For Gluten Intolerant, wheat is not a good source of nutrition, as it makes people sick and can lead to serious physical conditions.

    For those of us who can consume gluten, wheat is a good source of tryptophan and other amino acids that serve as building blocks for our entire body.

  7. Laura, Celebrate Woman Today says:

    amcoffee

    T & Pumpkin

    Pumpkins are such an incredible food overall! Antioxidants, vitamins, Tryptophan included.

    We already covered in detail vitamin A at AM Coffee, go check it out!

    With the pumpkin season coming, make sure to eat it regularly and in-season. There’s a huge difference made to our body when we consume vegetables and fruit grown in-season, as they correspond to our biological settings “organized” by Mother Nature thousands of years ago.

    Fun Fact: In early colonial times, pumpkins were used as an ingredient for the crust of pies, not the filling.

  8. Laura, Celebrate Woman Today says:

    amcoffee

    T & Potatoes

    Potatoes are great when it comes to recipes, wouldn’t you agree? We love them in any variation. Besides the taste, potatoes boast of multiple nutritional facts.

    They are vitamin B6 a good source of potassium, vitamin C, and dietary fiber. Potatoes also contain a variety of phytonutrients that have antioxidant activity.” As well, potatoes also contain a good amount of Tryptophan – 0.008 grams per ounce.

  9. Laura, Celebrate Woman Today says:

    amcoffee

    T & Walnuts

    Walnuts are richer than most all nuts in polyunsaturated fats. The most abundant being an Omega-6 fatty acid called linoleic acid.

    Walnuts also contain a relatively high percent of the healthy Omega-3 fat, alpha-linolenic acid (ALA).

    As we know, the health benefits of walnuts include reduction in bad cholesterol, improvement in metabolism, and control of diabetes.

    Walnuts contain 0.10 grams per ounce of Tryptophan, which is a great amount to boas of.

    • Battling with allergies and when they are at their worst it affects my sense of taste. I find walnuts to be that one nut I still can taste above the others. I really like walnuts.

  10. Laura, Celebrate Woman Today says:

    amcoffee

    T & Cauliflower

    Cauliflower is one of my favorite cruciferous vegetables! Housing a ton of nutrients – from Vitamin C to Fiber to Protein to Potassium and MORE – this incredible veggie has a good amount of Tryptophan, too. It contains 0.0025 grams of T per ounce.

    The cruciferous are known to contain phytochemicals and other nutrients that may help detoxify certain cancer-causing substances before they have a chance to cause harm in the body. Load up your daily intake with this amazing veggie and others from the cruciferous family!

  11. Laura, Celebrate Woman Today says:

    amcoffee

    T & Cucumbers

    Cucumbers are not just water! They are loaded with micronutrients that feed our organs, our skin, our system with amazing myriad of life-giving nutrients.

    Just take a look at some of the amazing citizens of the House of Cucumber!

    Vitamin C
    Potassium
    Magnesium
    Vitamin K
    Molybdenum
    Silica – the nail-health promoting mineral!

    And yes, cucumbers do have Tryptophan in them! About 0.001 grams per ounce, but it does add up when we eat different sources of foods with variety of nutrients.

    Do remember to take a cucumber wedge and “polish” your facial skin with it. Leave this mask for 10 minutes, then wash off with cool water. Then feel the difference!

  12. Laura, Celebrate Woman Today says:

    amcoffee

    T & Mushrooms

    Mushrooms boost our immune systems, they’re high in antioxidants, and contain loads of vitamin B2 and B3.

    Mushrooms, like humans, produce vitamin D when exposed to the sun!

    Mushrooms contain 0.0025 grams per ounce which, again, will add up when we eat from a variety of food sources.

  13. Laura, Celebrate Woman Today says:

    amcoffee

    T & Leafy Greens + Tomatoes

    I try to get one raw salad with my food every day. Leafy greens are famous for their antioxidant and anticancer properties. They’re low in fat, high in fiber, and rich in vitamin C and phytochemicals. What does this mean? Leafy greens can reduce the risk of cancer and heart disease. They’re also a good source of T; spinach contains 0.008 grams per ounce.

    With Tomatoes, you get a ton of antioxidant properties!

    They are an excellent source vitamin C and vitamin K. As well, tomatoes are a very good source of dietary fiber, vitamin A and vitamin E. Tomatoes are also a house of Ttryptophan – 0.001 grams per ounce.

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