8 Foods Rich In Melatonin In India
In today's fast-paced world, a good night's sleep can often feel elusive.
Tossing and turning, staring at the ceiling, or struggling to fall asleep can disrupt our daily routines and leave us feeling drained.
This is where melatonin comes to the rescue. Melatonin is a hormone that plays a crucial role in regulating our sleep patterns. Its production is stimulated by darkness and suppressed by light.
It helps synchronize our internal body clock with the natural day-night rhythm, promoting restful sleep.
In this article, we will discuss melatonin-rich foods which are a natural and effective way to enhance your sleep.
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What is melatonin and why do you need it?
Melatonin is a hormone produced by the pineal gland in the brain, primarily responsible for regulating our sleep-wake cycle.
As evening falls, melatonin levels rise, signaling to the body that it's time to sleep.
This hormone helps to set our internal body clock, ensuring that we feel sleepy at night and awake during the day.
This hormone is required for the following reasons:
- Restoring the sleep due to jet lag, or insomnia.
- To restore the sleep-wake pattern in adults and children.
- To lower the risk of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.
In addition to its role in sleep regulation, melatonin also acts as a powerful antioxidant, protecting our cells from damage caused by free radicals.
8 foods rich in Melatonin
Tart Cherries: Tart cherries are a delicious and natural source to help in melatonin production in the body. These ruby-colored fruits contain high levels of this sleep-enhancing hormone, making them a perfect bedtime snack.
You can have it in juice form, or directly as a fruit, tart cherries can help regulate your sleep cycle and improve sleep quality.
Oats: Oats are a famous breakfast recipe, which is not only nutritious but also an excellent source of complex carbohydrates and fiber, which help in generating a sense of fullness and aid in restful sleep.
Oats are also rich in tryptophan, which is responsible for regulating the melatonin and serotonin hormones for inducing sleep. Enjoy a warm bowl of oatmeal before bed to experience its sleep-inducing benefits.
Sweet Corn: Sweet corn is not only a delightful addition to meals but also a melatonin-rich food. This versatile vegetable contains a fair amount of melatonin, contributing to a peaceful slumber.
Incorporate sweet corn into your dinner recipes to reap the sleep-enhancing benefits it offers.
Warm Milk: The most traditional and classic bedtime remedy, warm milk has been used for generations to promote sleep. This comforting beverage contains tryptophan, an amino acid that helps the body produce melatonin.
Sip on a warm glass of milk before bed to relax your mind and prepare for a restful night's sleep.
Tomato: Tomatoes are widely used in Indian cuisine and are an unexpected source of melatonin. These vibrant fruits contain antioxidants and other beneficial compounds that can support sleep quality.
Include tomatoes in your meals, whether in curries, salads, or as a sauce, to harness their melatonin content.
Grapes: Grapes are not only a refreshing fruit but also a natural source of melatonin. This juicy and sweet fruit can aid in regulating your sleep patterns.
Munch on a handful of grapes as a snack or add them to your fruit salad for a melatonin boost.
Nuts: Nuts, particularly Pistachios, Almonds, and walnuts are the richest source of melatonin. Along with other essential nutrients, pistachios are also rich in vitamin B6, which is required to promote the synthesis of tryptophan, which in turn is responsible for producing melatonin.
Chamomile Tea: While not a food, chamomile tea deserves a mention due to its well-known calming properties. It has a soothing effect on the mind and body and is a popular herbal remedy for promoting relaxation and relieving stress, making it an excellent choice for winding down before bedtime.
Chamomile tea contains compounds that can increase the levels of melatonin in the body, helping you achieve a peaceful night's sleep.
Foods to avoid before going to the bed
While incorporating melatonin-rich foods into your diet can aid in better sleep, it's equally important to be mindful of what you consume before bedtime.
As there are some foods and beverages that can disrupt sleep patterns and hinder the production of melatonin, ultimately disturbing the sleep quality and schedule.
Here are a few items to avoid before going to sleep:
Spicy Foods: Spicy foods can cause indigestion or heartburn, making it difficult to sleep comfortably. It's best to avoid them in the evening.
Caffeine: Avoid consuming caffeinated beverages like coffee, tea, or energy drinks close to bedtime, as caffeine can interfere with sleep.
Heavy and Greasy Foods: Foods that are high in fat or heavy to digest can lead to discomfort and disrupt sleep. Try to have lighter meals in the evening.
Alcohol: While alcohol may initially make you feel drowsy, it can disrupt the quality of your sleep and inhibit the natural production of melatonin.
Sleep is vital for our overall health and well-being as much as eating healthy to maintain a good lifestyle.
And, melatonin is a hormone that facilitates a restful night's sleep, hence it's essential to regulate this hormone timely. You can incorporate melatonin-rich foods into your diet to naturally support healthy sleep patterns and improve sleep quality.
In India, you can find various foods such as tart cherries, oats, sweet corn, warm milk, tomatoes, grapes, peppers, and chamomile tea that are not only delicious but also abundant in melatonin.