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GR8NESS expert Expert Reviewed
A girl looks into the fridge, looking for her serotonin fix
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Items in Your Fridge That Could Increase Serotonin

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Your fridge is already filled with goodies that are essential for your well-being. In some of these things, there’s something called serotonin: a chemical messenger believed to act as a mood stabilizer. Studies show that serotonin levels can affect our behavior, and having the right levels of serotonin is linked to feeling good.

While the connection between food and mental health is still being studied, research has shown that a low level of serotonin can be tied in with mood disorders, including depression and anxiety. Learn about how you can stock up your fridge with foods that increase serotonin.

Research is ongoing, but, the connection between foods containing tryptophan, the amino acid that creates serotonin’s neurotransmitter, seems to be promising. Learn more about the foods that you probably already have in your fridge that could help increase serotonin.

Brown whole eggs inside a cardboard egg holder
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1. Eggs

The protein in eggs can help boost your levels of tryptophan. However, there’s a catch: you have to eat the yolk to get it. Two eggs have 60% of the tryptophan recommended daily intake. Yolks are rich in tryptophan and other nutrients that have a myriad of health benefits. Not to mention, they contain antioxidant properties to help your cells stay young.
Several large pieces of cheese
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2. Cheese

Another great source of tryptophan. Cheeses rich in tryptophan include mozzarella with 204% of the recommended daily intake, parmesan and cheddar cheese with 56%, and Romano cheese with 43%. They’re also great sources of other nutrients we need to stay healthy, like calcium.
A bowl of tofu with vegetables and hard boiled eggs
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3. Tofu

Soy products in general are really high in tryptophan. Tofu is one of those products, a great substitute for almost all forms of animal protein. One ounce of tofu has about 27% of the recommended daily intake for tryptophan. Add it to salads, as a side dish, or as the main protein in your meal to keep your serotonin levels high.
Pineapple sliced up into the shape of a whole pineapple
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4. Fruits

Those fruits in your fridge are doing much more than adding some color to your meals and snacks. Bananas, pineapples, kiwi, mangoes, and grapefruits are some of the fruits that can help you maintain your serotonin levels.
Parchment paper with two pieces of salmon
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5. Salmon

The king of the Mediterranean diet, salmon is one of the healthiest fatty fishes you can incorporate in your diet. And, you guessed it, it’s also rich in tryptophan. Salmon also helps with cholesterol, blood pressure, and making sure you get the right amount of omega-3 fatty acids.
Raw chicken breasts in top of a wood plank with salt, pepper, and oil on the side
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6. Poultry

Lean chicken and turkey are a favorite among those looking to keep a healthy diet. You can add over 731mg of tryptophan per piece. No wonder you feel so happy after Thanksgiving dinner! Meats like turkey are stuffed with tryptophan, increasing your serotonin levels almost instantly.
A glass of milk with a large spiral straw
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7. Milk

Not only is milk a fantastic source of calcium, which helps us maintain healthy bones, but milk is also rich in tryptophan, which helps increase serotonin. Aim to include low-fat milk in to your diet, as full-fat milk can be high in saturated fats.
A piece of chutney being lifted out of a jar with chopsticks
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8. Fermented Foods

Fermented foods such as kimchi, kombucha, and yogurt are loaded with probiotics and nutrients that elevate our health. These probiotics are directly linked to our gut health, which plays a key role in our body’s serotonin levels.
A peanut shaped jar of peanut butter
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9. Nut Butter

Seeds and nuts in general are particularly high in tryptophan. In your fridge, however, you’re most likely to find your seeds in butter form –think peanut butter, almond butter, and cashew butter to name some. These can have up to 58% of the recommended daily intake of tryptophan per ounce. Keep them handy for quick and easy breakfasts or healthy afternoon snacks.
A strainer filled with fresh spinach leaves
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10. Veggies

A diet without vegetables is without a doubt incomplete. Dark green leafy vegetables, like spinach, are a great source of tryptophan. So are baked potatoes with skin, mushrooms, and mustard greens. If you’re thinking about mixing up a salad, make sure to throw these serotonin-rich veggies in the blend.
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Geraldine
GR8NESS Writer
Geraldine is a GR8NESS Contributing Editor who writes about self care, clean makeup and beauty, mental health, and relationships – as well as natural remedies and fitness. She’s a coffee enthusiast with Venezuelan roots, a former ballerina, and the sunscreen patrol. Most of the time, you can find her working on her skincare routine or trying a new dance workout.
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