October 2012
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Raising Serotonin Levels To Grow A Healthier Mind

It’s important to consider the well-being of the mind as well as the body, particularly in today’s busy lifestyle where stress levels are high and cases of depression are all too common. Recent studies have shown that it has a direct relation to the amount of serotonin in our bodies. 

Serotonin is a type of hormone also called as 5-hydroxytryptamine. It is produced in the brain and carried through the nervous system to regulate mood, sleep and learning patterns. Low serotonin levels have been known to cause emotional symptoms such as stress and anxiety, a loss of interest in sex, low self-esteem and reduced self-confidence.

A good way to keep a healthier mind is therefore to increase levels of serotonin in the body. While research is still inconclusive, exercise has been known to boost overall feelings of confidence and well-being in most people. Some studies have found that physical activity can raise serotonin levels not only during the exercise but continuously produces more of the hormone afterwards. Some great activities to help boost serotonin include yoga, running and swimming. 

Outdoor jogging and biking are also excellent exercises as sunlight can also help boost serotonin levels by suppressing a chemical called melatonin in the body, which can sometimes affect serotonin production. Combining exercise and sunlight is likely the best way to increase serotonin in terms of physical activities, so it’s a good idea to go on a stroll in the park or at the beach as often as possible.

A healthy diet can also help the brain produce more serotonin naturally. The vitamins needed to create serotonin include vitamin B1, found in brown rice, oatmeal, dried soybeans and also in poultry, pork, liver, kidney and fish. Vitamin B2 is best taken from yeast extract, liver, almonds and most kinds of dried herbs spices and pepper. Vitamin B6 is also needed for serotonin; good sources include celery, spinach, turnip greens and fish, especially tuna, salmon and snapper. 

Other helpers of serotonin are magnesium, selenium plus calcium and folic acid. You can find magnesium in boiled spinach, cocoa and almonds. Folic acid is best taken from nuts, dried yeast and avocado. Good sources of calcium include natural yoghurt, Cottage, Swiss and unprocessed Cheddar cheese.

You can’t go wrong with healthy food and exercise and now there is even more reason to adopt a healthier lifestyle with all the benefits of serotonin. Be sure to give it a try the next time you’re feeling a bit down.

Author: This post was constructed on behalf of Simply Sweat, online fitness clothing store. They specalise in Women’s gym wear such as sports bras, yoga wear, Pilates equipment and running gear.

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