Neurotransmitters are chemicals that transmit signals from one brain area to another, and serotonin acts exactly like these chemicals in the brain.
It is considered that serotonin affects various psychological and other functions in the body, including cells related to appetite, sexual desire, mood, memory, sleep, learning, some behavior, and temperature regulation.
This brain chemical is usually related to depression, but most people don’t know the other various functions of serotonin in the brain, and they think that serotonin can be only reproduced with drugs available only with prescription from a doctor, which can cause severe side effects.
But we can increase serotonin completely naturally, and this should be an exciting news!
Low amounts of this brain chemical are in some part connected to various diseases, both acute and chronic.
We strongly encourage you to read and use the following valuable information to increase your physical and mental health.
These are the 5 natural ways to increase the level of serotonin in the brain:
1. Take Some 5-HTP
This substance which was initially called 5-Hydroxytryptophan, has been proved to effectively treat depression, hypertension, anxiety, insomnia, and fibromyalgia. It succeeds to do these things by stimulating the serotonin production.
Moreover, 5-HTP showed positive results on weight levels, since it suppresses the appetite. One Italian study conducted on females, showed that those who ingested this substance lost extra 10 pounds in 2 weeks, as oppose to the placebo group who managed to lose 2 pounds in that period.
In experience the boosting effects of 5-HTP on serotonin, it is recommended 100 to 400 mg a daily dosage, consumed in multiple doses, for example at breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Expect noticeable results of 5-HTP supplementation after a period of 4 to 6 weeks.
2. Get Some B Vitamins
Vitamin B6 especially helps in both the function and development of serotonin in the brain.Since it has numerous effects on brain chemicals, people prone to stress should add a B-complex product in their diet.
Vitamin B6 and B12 are both effective in reducing symptoms of depression while at the same time preventing erratic neutral brain activity.
The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition published a study which showed that diet supplemented with B-vitamins improved the condition of older adults with depression or depressive-like symptoms.
The recommended daily dosage of B-complex product, like a supplement, is 50 to 100 milligrams.
People with additional symptoms such as exhaustion or chronic stress/fatigue should add pantothenic acid on a daily basis. B5 vitamins in 250 mg dosage should be sufficient for improvement of these symptoms.
3. Embrace The Light
Have you ever wonder why our mood is drastically improved by opening the shades on a sunny day? This may be because our brain produces serotonin chemicals by itself. Even on a cool, cloudy days, a little sunshine has noticeable, positive influence on our mood.
A healthy and productive practice is to have about 15-20 minutes’ walk, once or twice a day. The best time of the day to have a walk is in the morning, and here are the 2 reason for that: (1) in this time of the day we can burn more calories, and (2) in this way we’re mentally preparing for the whole day.
So in this way our brain will produce serotonin, while at the same time we will burn some calories.
4. Get a Massage
You already know that massages feel so good, but did you know that they directly influence the levels of serotonin? In a physiological level, massages lower cortisol- the stress hormone which blocks the serotonin production.
According to many researches, professional massages reduce the cortisol levels by 31%. Once the production of cortisol is prevented, the brain is capable to produce serotonin. Moreover, massages can increase the production of dopamine – “reward and pleasure” brain chemical.
According to many experts, guided massage therapies are the most efficient method of increasing the levels of serotonin and dopamine in the brain, along other beneficial effects. Nevertheless, even a simple massage by someone close will be enough for the majority. People with turmoil and trauma are advised to consult a licensed massage therapist.
Numerous scientific studies have shown that mediation has physical and psychological benefits, which is why any article on ‘serotonin-boosting” includes meditation. There are numbers of meditative practices, all of which improve the serotonin production.
The most beneficial mediation practice for boosting serotonin, is probably the Transcendental Meditation (TM).
According to researchers TM is a potent stimulant on the levels of serotonin as a result of the increasing of 5-HIAA- one of the serotonin’s building blocks. Science has found out that increased levels of serotonin in the brain are directly related to increased amounts of 5-HIAA.
Meditation lowers the cortisol levels in the brain, similarly to massages. Moreover, meditation is exceptionally proficient in causing a relaxed brain response while repressing the natural fight or flight” reaction of the brain.
Another meditative practice related to increasing of the serotonin levels is mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR). The reason is since MBSR additionally sensitizes the receptors of serotonin.
An interesting fact is that military personnel exposed to Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder is using this MBSR type of meditative technique.