Here are 4 scientifically proven ways to boost serotonin levels

You’ve probably heard of serotonin before, but what is it exactly, and how does it affect your body?

Serotonin is a chemical found throughout the body that plays an important role in regulating a range of bodily functions, including blood clotting and bowel function. In the brain, serotonin performs the role of a neurotransmitter. Neurotransmitters are chemicals that relay messages around the brain to support its functioning.

There are many theories about the role of serotonin in the brain. A widespread idea is that serotonin contributes to brain networks that regulate stress and anxiety. The chemical may also promote patience and the ability to cope. There are many products that manufacturers claim can boost serotonin levels and improve mood or help with stress. However, there is a lack of evidence behind many of these claims.

If you really want to boost your serotonin levels, science suggests the following four things.

Exercise: There is some evidence that muscle activation during exercise allows more tryptophan, which the body converts to serotonin, to cross the blood-brain barrier. Most of the evidence for exercise increasing serotonin comes from animal studies, though there are some examples in humans. Increasing serotonin levels is one of several ways in which exercise might treat depression.

Diet: Foods that contain tryptophan could increase serotonin production in the body. Tryptophan is an essential amino acid in many foods, including salmon, chicken, eggs, spinach, seeds, and nuts.

Light: Exposure to bright light may also affect serotonin levels. Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a type of depression in which the symptoms correlate with the seasons. People with this condition may experience depressive symptoms during the winter when there is less sunlight. The causes of SAD are unclear, but one theory is that poor sun exposure during the winter causes lower serotonin levels, leading to symptoms of depression.

Medication: If the aforementioned suggestions don’t help in boosting serotonin levels, research suggests there are several common antidepressant medications that directly increase serotonin levels in the brain. However, we suggest you speak to a doctor before considering this option.

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Here are 4 scientifically proven ways to boost serotonin levels

You’ve probably heard of serotonin before, but what is it exactly, and how does it affect your body?

Serotonin is a chemical found throughout the body that plays an important role in regulating a range of bodily functions, including blood clotting and bowel function. In the brain, serotonin performs the role of a neurotransmitter. Neurotransmitters are chemicals that relay messages around the brain to support its functioning.

There are many theories about the role of serotonin in the brain. A widespread idea is that serotonin contributes to brain networks that regulate stress and anxiety. The chemical may also promote patience and the ability to cope. There are many products that manufacturers claim can boost serotonin levels and improve mood or help with stress. However, there is a lack of evidence behind many of these claims.

If you really want to boost your serotonin levels, science suggests the following four things.

Exercise: There is some evidence that muscle activation during exercise allows more tryptophan, which the body converts to serotonin, to cross the blood-brain barrier. Most of the evidence for exercise increasing serotonin comes from animal studies, though there are some examples in humans. Increasing serotonin levels is one of several ways in which exercise might treat depression.

Diet: Foods that contain tryptophan could increase serotonin production in the body. Tryptophan is an essential amino acid in many foods, including salmon, chicken, eggs, spinach, seeds, and nuts.

Light: Exposure to bright light may also affect serotonin levels. Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a type of depression in which the symptoms correlate with the seasons. People with this condition may experience depressive symptoms during the winter when there is less sunlight. The causes of SAD are unclear, but one theory is that poor sun exposure during the winter causes lower serotonin levels, leading to symptoms of depression.

Medication: If the aforementioned suggestions don’t help in boosting serotonin levels, research suggests there are several common antidepressant medications that directly increase serotonin levels in the brain. However, we suggest you speak to a doctor before considering this option.

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