Life Style

8 Ways to Boost Serotonin Without Medication

The Top 8 Ways To Boost the happy hormone called serotonin Serotonin is neurochemical made by your body that helps you to feel cheerful,  happy and in a state of well-being. It’s involved with keeping your mood stable, helping you to focus, stay calm and pay attention. Symptoms Of Low Serotonin Stress & Irritability Unfortunately many people have low levels of serotonin and this can cause  you to feel irritated, stressed and you may suffer with anxiety. Low Self-Esteem People with low  serotonin levels also often have low self-esteem, Depression perceiving that  the world is an unfriendly place and this can even develop into depression. Impulsive Cravings Low serotonin can also cause  you to crave short-term highs from eating junk foods, binge eating, alcoholism, or drug use.

Disrupted Sleep It can also disrupt your  sleeping patterns, possibly causing oversleeping or waking up many times during the night. IBS And serotonin also helps to maintain normal  digestion, so without enough you may develop irritable bowel syndrome or chronic diarrhea.

Fortunately there are some simple and natural ways to  boost your serotonin levels to overcome these issues. And that’s exactly what we will be talking about in today’s video. Just a quick reminder this video is for educational purposes only,  so do speak to your doctor if you have any medical or mental health concerns.

1. Tryptophan If you wish you can  take supplement containing 250mg l-tryptophan, 45 minutes before you to bed, on an empty stomach. Tryptophan crosses the blood-brain barrier and is converted to “the happy hormone” serotonin. By boosting serotonin, tryptophan enhances your mood, and helps you access and store memories. People usually take this at night because it helps them to fall asleep,  and get a deeper more restorative sleep, which is essential when it comes to balancing your brain chemistry,  and overcoming depression, anxiety and other issues.

Make sure to use Tryptophan on an empty stomach,  as proteins can block your ability to absorb it properly. 2. Sunlight Exposure Many people feel down, sad and depressed  in the winter because they aren’t being exposed to enough sunshine. This is why there is higher rates of depression in Iceland for example, where they may only get  around 4 hours of daylight in the winter because of the countries high latitude. When sunlight enters your eyes, it stimulates parts of your retina that  tells your brain to make and store more serotonin (the happy hormone) When the UV rays contact your skin, it also triggers the production of Vitamin  D which reduces stress hormones (cortisol) and raises serotonin.

This is why people feel much better,  calmer and happier when they are sunbathing on a beautiful beach. I for example have had some of my most creative ideas whilst sitting in the sun,  because of how it improves my mood and allows me to think more clearly. Start taking slow walks outside at least 45 minutes each day whenever you can,  even if there is cloud cover. The essential oils that are released from the plants and trees also have a  soothing effect that can help to balance out your nervous system.

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3. Prebiotics Did you know that 95% of the serotonin in your body is made by EC Cells in your gut. In order to activate these EC cells, you need to have lots  of friendly bacteria and other healthy microbes living in your digestive tract. Unfortunately junk foods, medications, artificial sweeteners and stress can all  cause imbalances in this bacteria, which can lead to depression, anxiety and mood disorders. This is what we call the gut-brain connection.

 The microbes that live in your gut produce  neurotransmitters like serotonin, Gaba and dopamine to keep your brain chemistry in balance. Fortunately it’s very easy to fix your microbiome by  eating lots of prebiotic and probiotic rich foods. I recommend sauerkraut, kefir and kimchi.

In terms of boosting serotonin however,  you want to each foods rich in an prebiotic called Oligosaccharides, a type of plant sugar which feeds certain microbes in your gut,  that stimulates EC cells to make more serotonin. Chicory root and Jerusalem artichokes are the richest source of this prebiotic.

But you can also get it from asparagus, onions, garlic, leeks, berries,  and watermelon. 4. Exercise Start performing at least 30 minutes of aerobic exercise 2x per week,  such as jogging, biking, swimming or anything that gets your heart pumping Studies show that motor activity speeds up the brains ability  to convert tryptophan into serotonin, therefore boosting your serotonin levels. This is why exercise is always recommended for anyone with mental health problems. Exercise also triggers reward centres in your brain by boosting dopamine,  which can make you feel more pleasure and less depressed/anxious.

5. Stop Snacking When you snack frequently through the day, you continuously raise a  hormone called insulin which helps to keep your blood sugars under control. However snacking for years causes insulin resistance. This stops the  hormone from transporting nutrients to your brain such as tryptophan.

This can lead you to having lowered serotonin levels,  and blood sugar fluctuations that can make your mood go up and down easily.

So stop snacking and start eating 2 solid meals per day. Adding lots of healthy  nutritious vegetables, proteins and fats to help normalise your hormones and neurotransmitters. 6. Manage Stress Whenever you feel stressed or anxious,  your adrenal glands release a hormone called cortisol, as part of the fight/flight response.

Cortisol works with serotonin to keep you alert  and ready to escape/fight in a life threatening situation.

However too much cortisol over time lowers serotonin,  eventually causing a chemical imbalance in the brain. So start taking steps to manage your stress. Consider getting a massage once or twice per week,  as this has been shown to lower cortisol and boost serotonin. Taking long walks can counter stress, Along with drinking herbal teas like passionflower, And cutting out caffeine and stimulants from your diet.


Improve Sleep The best way to lower stress (cortisol) and feel calmer,  more focused and happy (serotonin) is by getting more sleep. Start going to bed 1 hour earlier and giving yourself time to relax before sleeping. Turning off all your devices and blocking as much light from the room as possible. Try to go to bed at the same time every night and wake up at the same time. This will help to synchronise your bodies internal clock (circadian rhythm) and  regulate the amount of serotonin that you brain stores and uses.

8. Recall Happy Events Research has uncovered that people who spend more time remembering ‘specific’  and happy memories have lower rates of depression.

I recommend writing a list on your phone or in a journal of specific  memories from your life that give you a sense of joy, laughter and pleasure. You can go back and read these through regularly  to train your brain in focusing on positivity rather than negativity. This stimulates the release of endorphins and other healthy brain  chemicals that improve your mood and also help regulate serotonin/cortisol.

So as a quick summary, here’s the 8 things that you can do to boost the happy hormone serotonin SUMMARY 1. Take 250mg L-tryptophan before bed 2. Get more sunshine (45m+) Daily 3. Probiotic & Prebiotic Foods 4. Aerobic Exercise (30m) 2x Weekly.

 5. Stop Snacking (To Increase Insulin Sensitivity) (TO HELP  TRYPTOPHAN AND FUEL CROSS INTO YOUR BRAIN) 6. Manage Your Stress (by getting a massage  or drinking passionflower tea) 7. Improve Sleep by going to bed  at more regular times and turning off alld evices and ligth sources. 8.

Journal and recall happy moments of joy from your life.

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