Serotonin is a very important hormone as it influences mood and sleeping patterns. It also controls blood pressure levels. Serotonin is made up of an amino acid – Tryptophan. Tryptophan is obtained from food, which is then transported to the brain. In the brain cells, Tryptophan is converted to Serotonin.
Serotonin deficiency can be treated with proper diet or with Serotonin supplements. Hence, inclusion of foods that have Tryptophan in our diet is very important.
Top 10 Serotonin Foods
Let us quickly look at the top Serotonin rich foods:
Fatty fishes like Tuna, Clams, Oysters, Crabs, Mackerel, Salmon, Herrings, Sardines and also fish oil supplements are good sources of Serotonin.
Meat apart from proteins also has Serotonin. Meat is the known natural source of Serotonin. Meats like Beef, Pork, Liver, Turkey, and Chicken contain Serotonin and can help get rid of the serotonin deficiencies. Bacons are also great source of Serotonin.
Eggs whites are another very important source of Serotonin. Eggs are everyday food, available easily and everyone loves them. Eggs also contain many other vitamins and vital nutrients required for body. Avoid consuming excess of egg yolk, as it contains lots of fats which can be harmful for heart health.
4. Dairy products:
Dairy products such as Milk, Buttermilk, Curd, Cheese is a good source of Serotonin foods. Indian cheese, paneer also contain Serotonin.
Apart from many vitamins and health nutrients, Tofu also contains serotonin. This is made of soy; hence you get real goodness of soy vitamins too. Soy milk or Soy can be consumed for its nutrients as well.
Vegetables like Garlic, Carrots, Squash, Okra, Asparagus, Broccoli, Spinach, Green beans, Potatoes, Cabbage, Beets, Lettuce, Onions and Tomatoes help in creation of Serotonin. All these are easily available in any market and help to boost level of Serotonin and hence are among the list of foods rich in serotonin.
Carbohydrate-rich food that contains fiber should be consumed to keep you relaxed and happy. Popcorn is an example of such food that contains serotonin.
[ Read: High Carbohydrate Rich Foods ]
Almonds, Peanuts, Cashew nuts, Pistachios, PineNuts, Peanutbutter, Hazelnuts and Walnuts help in making of Serotonin. Hence, their usage in food everyday can provide Iron in the body. These nuts also contain good amount of omega-3 fatty acids which help in maintaining healthy skin, hair and nails.
[ Read: Selenium containing Rich Foods ]
Bran contains Serotonin in it which leads to proper cell functioning in the body. It also rich in fiber. Good examples of bran are rice bran, toasted wheat germ breads, cereals, potatoes and rice.
Beverages like Black Tea, Tea, Cocoa, Coffee, Beer, and Wine have a small amount of Serotonin present in them. Though they can meet the Serotonin requirements in the body, but must be taken in small quantity due to the caffeine present in them.
[ Read: L-Arginine Rich Foods ]
Seeds are very rich source of Serotonin. They also contain Protein, Potassium, Zinc, Iron, B vitamins, E vitamins, Magnesium and Calcium. Pumpkin seeds, Squash seeds, Watermelon seeds, Sesame seeds, Flax seeds, Sunflower Seeds are some seeds that contain Serotonin.
Sesame butter, also known as Tahini is a good source of Serotonin in food. This is high in calcium and Serotonin content.
[ Read : Foods Rich in Niacin ]
Some important tips:
1. Avoid excessive consumption of Serotonin. It can be dangerous.
2. Excessive intake can lead to weakening of bones, calcification of internal organs, increased risk of heart attack and many other vascular diseases.
3. Low serotonin can lead to loss of appetite, rickets, anaemia, muscle pain, improper bone formation, numbness, depression and lower immune system.
4. Serotonin deficiency symptoms are sweating, headache, nausea, high fever, irregular heartbeat and unconsciousness.