Red wine makes you sleepy
Winding down after work with a glass of red wine could set you up for a good night’s sleep. Scientists in Italy say they’ve discovered that the grapes used for making some red wines contain high levels of the sleep hormone melatonin. Melatonin is naturally secreted by the pineal gland in the brain, especially at night, and tells the body it’s time to sleep. It was thought to be exclusively produced by mammals but recently it was discovered in plants. Researchers at the University of Milan found high levels in the grape varieties Nebbiolo, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Sangiovese and Croatina and say that the melatonin content is also enhanced by treating vines with a plant vaccine called Benzothiadiazole, a chemical that increases disease resistance. However, Richard Wurtman of the brain and cognitive science department at Massachusetts Institute of Technology believes more research is needed to see whether the compounds are melatonin or something similar.