Serotonin is a messenger in our bodies that assists in controlling our nervous system chemically. As it affects how happy we feel in general, it is often referred to as the happy hormone.
Serotonin carries data between various parts of the brain that affect functions such as our emotions, digestion, and appetite. When your body’s serotonin levels are balanced, you’ll experience greater happiness and emotional stability. Serotonin levels that are too low might result in mood fluctuations, impatience, inability to sleep, and more. Thankfully, there are some easy ways to increase your serotonin levels.
Increase Your Time in the Sun
Putting yourself in close proximity to natural settings can have a significant effect on your mental state and help you achieve a sense of tranquility and serenity that is conducive to meditation. Due to the fact that a deficiency in vitamin D has been linked to depression, spending time outside and exposing oneself to the sun on a consistent basis might help alleviate depressive symptoms and boost serotonin levels.
You can attempt sun therapy or take vitamin D supplements to make up for any loss of serotonin in order to combat the wintertime blues that you experience throughout the colder months.
Pay Attention to What You Eat and Drink
Caffeine withdrawal can cause your serotonin levels to drop, so it’s important to limit how much you rely on coffee, even if drinking it is a regular part of your morning or working routine. If you have noticed that your mood has been deteriorating, pay attention to what you are putting into your body.
Besides caffeine, eating snacks that are high in sugar or consuming a diet high in processed foods can cause a dip in serotonin levels. Instead, focus on healthy fats like fish and avocados or berries that are high in fiber and vitamin C.
Focusing more on a healthy diet full of color will not only put a smile on your face, but it will keep your serotonin levels in tip-top shape.
Improve Your Sleep, and You Will Improve Your Mood
In addition to assisting with alertness, serotonin is thought to play a role as a precursor to the hormone melatonin. Melatonin is secreted by the pineal gland and is responsible for regulating the body’s sleep-wake cycle. If you have been having trouble sleeping and your circadian cycle seems off, this could be an indication that your serotonin levels are too low.
There are a variety of ways to boost your serotonin levels, but the three above might be the easiest and quickest to achieve. If you’re concerned about your levels, particularly during the winter months, talk with your doctor about a supplement or consider investing in a sun lamp.