Did you know that you can help fight depression with food? Find out what fruits to eat if you want to keep this condition at bay.
Tryptophan is an essential amino acid best known for being a precursor for serotonin, a neurotransmitter that helps the body regulate appetite, mood, relaxation and sleep. This is the reason why tryptophan has been used in the treatment for insomnia, anxiety and depression. Keep your serotonin levels in check the natural way by having these tryptophan-rich fruits readily available.
Based on 100 gram serving:
Avocado – 25 mg
Aside from being the highest source of tryptophan, avocados are also one of the richest sources of protein, folate, and the heart-friendly omega-3 fatty acids.
Sapote – 23 mg
The flavor of the mamey sapote, also known as marmalade plum, is described by some as a combination of pumpkin, sweet potato and maraschino cherries with an avocado texture. Should you find some, make it into milkshakes or eat as is to help boost your mood and give your body the bone-fiendly calcium.
Guava – 22 mg
Guavas are the perfect snack for pregnant women. It is packed with potassium which helps prevent leg cramps; folate which prevents neural tube problems for the developing and baby, and tryptophan to help prevent postpartum depression.
Tamarinds – 18 mg
Have you tried eating a nutritious candy? The tamarind is a very healthy fruit that can be consumed in dozens of ways including being made into candies. Enjoy their sweet and sour taste and provide your body not only with tryptophan but also with a rich amount of thiamine, magnesium, potassium, iron and calcium.
Apricots – 15 mg
Apricots are important fruits in Iran where they are called Zard-ālū. Their scientific name Prunus armeniaca (Armenian plum) came from the belief that they are native in Armenia as they are known in the place during ancient times. Apricots are also excellent sources of vitamins A and C and a very good source of potassium and fiber.
Kiwifruit – 15 mg
The kiwifruit is the highest source of folate and vitamin K. In addition to tryptophan which aids restfulness, it also helps relax your nerves and muscles by loading up your body with magnesium.
Plantains – 15 mg
Plaintains have higher tryptophan content than their non-cooking relatives, the sweet bananas. The same with their blood pressure slashing potassium.
American Persimmons – 14 mg
The American persimmon can provide the body with more than 100% of the DV of vitamin C, higher than the Japanese ones. It is also rich in iron, one of the nutrients which helps boosts your energy levels.
Elderberries – 13 mg
Looking for other natural sources of fiber? Elderberries are one of the fruits loaded with dietary fiber. Pop them into your mouth for additional supply of vitamins A, C, and B6.
Soursop (Guyabano) – 11 mg
The delicious flavor of the soursop alone can already lift your mood. What with a taste that has been described as a combination of strawberry and pineapple with sour citrus notes contrasting with an underlying rich flavor reminiscent of coconut or banana. Chill before eating!
* Nutrient data source: USDA
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