Warm Milk Before Bed: Scientists Reveal Milk’s Sleep-Inducing Properties
Warm milk makes people tired, but what exactly is it in the dairy that makes people fall asleep?
A glass of warm milk before bedtime has long been recommended as a technique to get a restful night’s sleep. In a news release, the American Chemical Society (ACS) stated that common sedatives given for sleeplessness have a high risk of adverse effects and addiction. It’s no surprise that the custom of drinking warm milk before bed has endured.
But how does milk assist people in getting a good night’s sleep? This sleep-inducing effect is usually attributed to an amino acid called tryptophan, according to the organization. It is a precursor to the creation of the sleep hormone melatonin and plays a vital role in the development of the neurotransmitter serotonin, which promotes relaxation.
Scientists have discovered natural peptides that have sleep-enhancing properties in addition to tryptophan.
“For example, processing casein, a protein found in cow’s milk, with the digestive enzyme trypsin produces CTH, a combination of sleep-enhancing peptides,” according to the ACS. Casein Tryptic Hydrolysate (CTH) is an acronym for Casein Tryptic Hydrolysate. “A particular peptide known as -casozepine (-CZP) has been found within this mixture and may be responsible for some of these effects.” Researchers wanted to uncover other, maybe even more effective, peptides in CTH that could help with sleep for their study, which was published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. To accomplish so, they studied the effects of CTH and -CZP in mice sleep tests and discovered that CTH had superior sleep-enhancing qualities than -CZP alone.
The researchers noted, “Our results demonstrated that CTH considerably increased sleep duration in mice, which was nearly 2-fold longer than that of -CZP.”
This shows that CTH contains other sleep-inducing peptides, according to the ACS.
The researchers then looked at the bioactive peptides released in CTH during “simulated stomach digestion” using mass spectrometry.
The researchers discovered two peptides, YPVEPF and YFYPEL, that have “strong sleep-enhancing action.”
According to the American Chemical Society, YPVEPF caused a 25% increase in the number of mice who went asleep promptly. In comparison to the control group, it also enhanced their sleep duration by 400%.
According to the American Chemical Society, this could pave the way for novel and natural sleep therapies. Furthermore, additional research into CTH could lead to the discovery of new sleep-inducing peptides.
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