This article details the melatonin content of pistachios and how it might affect your body.
It’s important to note that melatonin doesn’t cause grogginess. It simply signals your body to relax because it’s time to go to sleep (
The melatonin found in foods like pistachios won’t make you groggy, but it may signal your body that it’s time to sleep. One ounce (28 grams) of pistachios packs about 6 mg of melatonin.
More research on just how much exogenous melatonin — meaning melatonin that comes from foods or supplements — is needed to affect your body.
Keep in mind that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) doesn’t regulate supplements the same way it regulates precription medications, and an optimal dose has not yet been established (
Given the reduced oversight, it isn’t easy to discern the exact contents and makeup of a given supplement like melatonin.
However, in many other countries, melatonin supplements are not sold over the counter and may require a prescription, so those will be regulated and monitored accordingly.
More research is needed to determine whether the body absorbs melatonin from food sources differently than melatonin from supplement sources.
You should consult a healthcare professional before taking melatonin supplements, especially if you take blood thinners or medications for epilepsy.
Grains, mushrooms, and pistachios are among the highest food sources of melatonin (
- Pistachios: 230,000 nanograms of melatonin per gram
- Mushrooms: 4,300–6,400 nanograms per gram
- Oats: 91 nanograms per gram
- Cherries: 10–20 nanograms per gram
- Tomatoes: 1–67 nanograms per gram
- Cow’s milk: 0.014 nanograms per milliliter
It’s worth noting that although cow’s milk doesn’t contain a significant amount of melatonin, it does pack high amounts of tryptophan. Tryptophan is an amino acid that your body can convert to melatonin (
Pistachios contain a significantly higher concentration of naturally occurring melatonin than many common foods.
Melatonin is a hormone that signals your body that it’s time to sleep.
While your body naturally produces melatonin, it can also be found in supplements and foods like pistachios.
However, it’s worth keeping in mind that melatonin works in response to darkness. Keeping your room dark and screens off a few hours before bedtime may also help you get better rest.
Further research on the connection between the naturally occurring melatonin in food and its bodily effects is needed. However, barring any nut allergies, it certainly can’t hurt to try.