Many of us are probably unaware that “happiness hormones” flow in our bodies when we receive signals from our brains. In this article, we will look at why and how we receive the signal, as well as what it does to us. If you’re having a rough time because of problems at home, at work, or emotionally, there are still many things you can do to improve your outlook and experience more joy in your daily life. Knowing what makes your body produce its own feel-good hormones and doing more of that is the key.
There are many ways to get our bodies to release hormones and neurotransmitters that can make us feel better. Exercising, going for a walk, and spending time in nature are just a few examples of the kinds of simple activities that can help.
Our “happiness hormones” are just as important to our mental health as the sex hormones we produce naturally. Here, we talk about the neurotransmitters serotonin, endorphins, and dopamine, as well as the hormone oxytocin, and their roles in making you feel good. We also give you 12 ways to make yourself feel good.
How do hormones work
In your body, various glands secrete chemicals known as hormones. They move through the blood and are very important for a wide range of bodily functions. They indeed perform some of these crucial roles to elevate your mood with mood-balancing properties. There are certain hormones that have been linked to increased positivity, such as joy and pleasure.
Some examples of such “happiness hormones” chemicals are:
Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that plays a big role in your brain’s reward system. It is often called the “happiness hormones”. It’s linked to good feelings, intelligence, memory, and more.
Serotonin is a neurotransmitter and hormone that controls your mood, as well as your appetite, digestion, memory, and learning.
Oxytocin, also known as the “love hormone,” plays an important role in labor and delivery, as well as in the establishment of a secure attachment between parents and their children. Trust, empathy and a sense of shared experience can all flourish when people feel more connected. In most cases, levels are higher after receiving physical affection.
When you’re under pressure or experiencing pain, your body releases endorphins, which act as natural painkillers. When you do things that make you feel good, like eating, working out, or having sex, your levels may go up.
What you can do to encourage the body to make more of these chemical-free mood enhancers is discussed below.
Exit the house
You want to increase your level of the happiness hormones serotonin, right? One of the best ways to do this is to spend time in the sunshine outside. Studies have shown that time spent in the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays can boost serotonin levels.
You can try going outside for a short period of time every day. If you’ve seen everything there is to see in your current location, it may be time to venture to a new park or even a new neighborhood. Keep in mind, though, that sun exposure raises the risk of skin cancer, so protect yourself!
Don’t procrastinate on your workouts.
Several aspects of physical health can be improved through exercise. Even one’s mental and emotional health can benefit from this. You may be familiar with the connection between exercise and endorphin release if you are familiar with the term “runner’s high.”
However, exercise has many other benefits besides the release of endorphins. Physical exercise is a great way to increase your levels of the feel-good chemicals dopamine and serotonin because it is habit-forming and requires little thought. Improve your workout to its fullest potential.
To maximize the benefits of exercise, do the following: Gather a small group of friends: A 2017 small study of medical students found evidence that group exercise has more benefits than individual exercise.
Soak up some rays: The serotonin benefits of exercise can be amplified by doing them in natural settings. Take your time. Try to do at least 30 minutes of aerobic exercise at a time. Studies show benefits from the exercise of any intensity, but higher-intensity workouts are linked with a larger endorphin release.
Laugh as much as you can
The best medicine is laughter. Share some hilarious moments with a friend. Of course, it is not a miracle that laughter will cure serious health problems. However, the increase in dopamine and endorphin levels that results from this has been shown to help with anxiety and depression.
There was an increase in endorphins after group laughter among 12 young men in a 2017 study. This conclusion is supported by the available evidence, according to the research. So grab a friend or significant other and either watch that hilarious video together, pull out your joke book, or enjoy a comedy special.
What’s the catch? Oxytocin release can be triggered by funny moments with your pet or your tiny tot at home, comedy shows that you binge-watch, or laughter with a loved one.
Put on some tunes (listen to your favorite music)
The release of multiple feel-good hormones is facilitated by musical stimulation. Dopamine levels can be boosted by listening to instrumental music, especially music that makes you feel chills. But if you’re a music lover, cranking up your favorite tunes might be all it takes to lift your spirits. In turn, this uplifted disposition may stimulate more serotonin production.
When making music, especially with a large ensemble, you may also feel a surge of endorphins. The release of feel-good chemicals called endorphins was found to be higher than usual among choir members in a study conducted in 2016.
Meditate to release happiness hormones
If you’ve done meditation before, you may be aware of its positive effects on your health, such as better sleep and less stress. Many of the positive effects of meditation have been scientifically linked to the release of dopamine.
Feeling lost as to where to begin? It’s easier than you might imagine. While sitting still is preferable at first, it is not required. Give it a shot. If you want to begin meditating, try the following: Find a place to sit where you won’t be disturbed.
You should find a position in which you feel most at ease, be it sitting, standing, or lying down. Any emotions you’re feeling, good or bad, are just thoughts that will float on by. Try not to pass judgment on, cling to, or dismiss your thoughts as they arise. It’s sufficient to merely acknowledge them.
Spend time in the kitchen (and with a loved one)
While you prepare and share a delicious meal, all four of your happiness hormones might get a boost from this suggestion.
Both dopamine and endorphins can be released in response to the pleasure of eating something tasty. The release of oxytocin is facilitated when you share a meal with someone you care about and form a bond with them while preparing the meal.
When choosing foods for a meal that will boost good hormones, keep the following in mind:
- There is a good possibility of releasing endorphins from eating spicy foods.
- Several foods which increased dopamine release include almonds, yogurt, beans, eggs, and lean meats.
- Increased serotonin production has been linked to eating foods high in tryptophan.
- Probiotic foods like yogurt, kimchi, and sauerkraut can modulate hormone secretion.
Incorporate Supplements Into Your Routine for the release of happiness hormones
Several supplements have been studied for their potential to boost serotonin levels. For instance, here are just a few possibilities.
- Green tea and green tea extract are high in tyrosine (needed for dopamine synthesis) (dopamine and serotonin)
- Probiotics (serotonin and dopamine production) (serotonin and dopamine production)
- Tryptophan (serotonin) (serotonin)
The results of expert studies on the effectiveness of supplements have been contradictory. More research is needed to back up the benefits of supplements for humans, as many studies have only been conducted on animals.
Although supplements have the potential to improve health, some are contraindicated for specific conditions. They may also interact with your current medications, so it’s best to check with your doctor first. Some supplements can have adverse effects if taken in excess of the recommended dose, so it’s important to familiarize yourself with the directions on the packaging before starting any regimen.
Spend time with your loved ones
Create a special date night. The name “happiness hormones” is a fitting regard to oxytocin which is well established. The release of oxytocin can be stimulated by simple attraction. However, having sex, kissing, or cuddling with another person also boosts oxytocin levels.
To increase oxytocin levels, all it takes is time spent with a loved one. Because of this, as your sense of closeness and satisfaction in your relationship grows, you may feel more happiness, bliss, or euphoria. Arousal is a great feeling and a positive if you know hoe to handle it well.
If you really want to feel good, you can get a rush of endorphins from dancing and sex, and dopamine from experiencing an orgasmic release. If you want to increase your endorphins even more, have a glass of wine with your significant other.
Have a pet companion
A great way to increase oxytocin levels in both you and your dog is to show affection. According to Reliable Source, when dog owners and their dogs interact, oxytocin levels in both groups rise. Seeing a dog you know and like can give you an oxytocin boost even if you don’t own a dog yourself. The dog is man’s best companion and friend.
It’s possible that this could happen any time a dog lover gets the chance to pet a dog. Get your favorite dog and give it a good ear scratch or a lap cuddle.
Try to get some rest for the release of happiness hormones.
Inadequate quality sleep has been linked to a variety of negative health effects. One effect is a disruption of hormone levels, especially dopamine. Both your mental and physical well-being may suffer as a result of this. Sleeping for 7 to 9 hours nightly has been shown to restore hormonal balance, making you feel better overall.
Some things to try if you have trouble sleeping are:
- maintaining a regular schedule of bedtime
- fix an alarm for a scheduled waketime
- maintain discipline in your sleep routine
- sleep in a loose dress or without clothes whichever is comfortable for you
- try reducing light, noise, and screens, while you sleep
- always sleep on a silk pillow
- reducing caffeine consumption, especially late in the day
Deal with stress
The occasional bout of anxiety is completely normal. Dopamine and serotonin levels can go down if you are under a lot of stress or have been through something traumatic. This could hurt your physical and mental health and make it harder for you to deal with stressful situations.
You may try the following suggested measures to alleviate stress:
- relaxing for a minute by laughing away the stressor
- meditating in complete silence
- involve yourself in active social interaction
- taking a 20-minute walk, run, or other physical activity
One or more of these methods may help you feel less stressed while also increasing your levels of feel-good chemicals like serotonin, dopamine, and endorphins.
Indulge in a relaxing massage.
If you’re already a massage fan, here’s more convincing evidence to book regular sessions: Massage increases the production of serotonin, dopamine, oxytocin, and frankincense. Studies have shown that massage increases levels of the feel-good hormones oxytocin and endorphins.
Massage has been shown to increase levels of the feel-good chemicals serotonin and dopamine, according to some older studies. A massage from a trained professional can have these effects, but an intimate touch can boost your oxytocin levels just as much.
The last line
Neurotransmitters like serotonin, dopamine, endorphins and oxytocin all help keep you in a good mood and make things feel good. There are simple things you can do to increase these happiness hormones naturally.
Talking to a healthcare provider about your difficulties with mood regulation may result in the recommendation of therapies or treatments that work for you.
This information is for educational purposes only, and no medical advice should be inferred from it. Before changing your diet or adding supplements, please talk to your doctor.
The author’s views are his or her own. The facts and opinions in the article have been taken from various articles and commentaries available in the online media and Eastside Writers does not take any responsibility or obligation for them.