Tryptophan is an essential amino acid that the human body cannot produce but can be obtained through your diet, specifically from animal and plant-based protein sources. However, it is essential for a broad selection of metabolic functions that affect your mood, cognition, and behavior. (Learn More)
Tryptophan is linked to a variety of mental health benefits and is responsible for producing serotonin in our bodies. Your body needs serotonin to produce melatonin which improves sleep. It also helps decrease symptoms of depression and anxiety, while improving a person’s overall moods and emotional state.
Nuts and seeds – the perfect sleep snack!
Nuts and seeds provide tryptophan, an amino acid responsible for producing mood-boosting serotonin. If you want to help improve your sleep, snack on a few nuts and seeds. Try and focus on tryptophan-rich foods right before bed to see if they may help them to get to sleep faster and sleep deeper.
While most nuts and seeds contain tryptophan, the amounts of tryptophan varies. Some of the higher amounts come from pistachios, cashews, almonds for the nuts and the seeds include pumpkin, sunflower and chia.
See a full list of nuts & seeds that highest in tryptophan here.
Consider making this homemade Simple Sleep Snack with a variety of nuts and seeds. This would give you a mixture of nutrients, along with a combination of flavors and textures. We’ve also added oats which are a good natural source of melatonin, which as we know, encourages sleep.
While you don’t need to sweeten this mix, if you want to sweeten it up, we recommend raw honey because it repairs DNA and is extremely high in minerals such as calcium, potassium, zinc, selenium, phosphorus, chromium, molybdenum, and manganese.
Simple Sleep Snack
- 2 cups of nuts of choice (be sure to include these in the mix: pistachios, cashews, almonds)
- 1 cup of seeds of choice (be sure to include these in the mix: pumpkin, sunflower and chia)
- 1 cup gluten-free oats
- 2 tsp non-alcoholic vanilla
- 1/4 cup cold-pressed coconut oil (can also use EVOO)
- Raw honey, to taste, if desired
Place nuts, seeds and oats in a bowl and stir to blend.
In a small pot, melt cold-pressed coconut oil with the rice bran syrup and vanilla extract till warmed, then drizzle over the oats and mixed nuts until thoroughly mixed
Line a baking tray with baking paper. I love these handy sheets. Evenly spread the mix onto the sheet.
Bake at 175 for 10 mins. Give the mix a good stir. Return to the oven for another 10 minutes. Watch carefully as to not burn the mix.
Enjoy this mix in the evening hours to encourage improved sleep!