Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Tryptophan & turkey

Eating turkey on Thanksgiving makes you sleepy because of the high levels of tryptophan (one of the nine essential amino acids) in the meat, right?? Most likely not.
(Image source: Wikipedia)

While the conclusive verdict is still out, a little critical thinking and knowledge of food chemistry, physiology, and psychology reveals that the carbohydrates and relaxation of usual restraints during the holiday have more to do with the drowsiness than the turkey. In fact, cheese has more tryptophan in it than turkey and other meats like beef and chicken have about the same amount.

Read a more detailed discussion of this at Blog Around the Clock on Scientific American Blogs.

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