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    Tryptophan

    Tryptophan is an amino acid needed for normal growth in infants and for nitrogen balance in adults. It is an essential amino acid, which means your body cannot produce it -- you must get it from your diet.

    Information

    The body uses tryptophan to help make niacin and serotonin. Serotonin is thought to produce healthy sleep and a stable mood.

    In order for tryptophan in the diet to be changed into niacin, the body needs to have enough:

    • Iron
    • Riboflavin
    • Vitamin B6

    Tryptophan can be found in:

    • Cheese
    • Chicken
    • Eggs
    • Fish
    • Milk
    • Nuts
    • Peanut butter
    • Peanuts
    • Pumpkin seeds
    • Sesame seeds
    • Soy
    • Tofu
    • Turkey

    References

    Dietary Guidelines for Americans - 2005. Washington, DC. US Dept of Health and Human Services and US Dept of Agriculture: 2005.

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    • Amino acids

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    • Food guide pyramid

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      • Amino acids

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      • Food guide pyramid

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      A Closer Look

      Self Care

        Review Date: 2/7/2010

        Reviewed By: Linda Vorvick, MD, Medical Director, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.

        The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
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        St. Luke's Hospital - 232 South Woods Mill Road - Chesterfield, MO 63017 Main Number: 314-434-1500 Emergency Dept: 314-205-6990 Patient Billing: 888-924-9200
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