Increasing serotonin levels can be done naturally. The best ways to do this are eating well, getting out in the sun or supplementing with vitamin D, exercising, taking adaptogens, and managing stress. Serotonin can also be increased synthetically with antidepressants.
Serotonin is a chemical in the brain that can affect mood. Eating foods that contain the essential amino acid known as tryptophan can help the body to produce more serotonin. Foods, including salmon, eggs, spinach, and seeds are among those that help boost serotonin naturally.
Research suggests that supplementing with magnesium may help to increase serotonin levels. In fact, low serotonin levels have been observed in patients with a magnesium deficiency. The study that discussed raising serotonin with magnesium reported success.
Brahmi acts as an adaptogen, which simply means that it helps the body adapt to new or stressful situations. When consumed, it is believed to increase the serotonin levels in the brain that help the mind keep calm and give relief from anxiety and nervousness.
5-HTP dietary supplements help raise serotonin levels in the brain. Since serotonin helps regulate mood and behavior, 5-HTP may have a positive effect on sleep, mood, anxiety, appetite, and pain sensation. 5-HTP is not found in the foods we eat, although tryptophan is found in foods.
Vitamin B-3 and Vitamin B-9 can help people with depression because B vitamins help the brain manage moods. Vitamin D, melatonin and St. John's Wort are recommended for seasonal depression. Omega-3 fatty acids, magnesium and vitamin C may also help with depression.
Vitamin D helps encourage serotonin production and release. If you're not getting enough vitamin D, taking a supplement may help reduce symptoms related to low serotonin levels, but check with your doctor before beginning supplementation.
Supplementing with it is an effective way to boost your serotonin levels. Higher serotonin levels may provide many benefits, such as promoting weight loss, improving the symptoms of depression and fibromyalgia, decreasing the frequency of migraine attacks and helping you sleep better.
It turns out one study shows the supplement can be as effective as SSRIs in treating mild to moderate depression. The FDA hasn't yet rated magnesium as an effective treatment for depression; they need to see more studies before they'll take that step.
Certain drugs and substances such as caffeine, alcohol, nicotine, NutraSweet, antidepressants, and some cholesterol-lowering medications deplete serotonin and other neurotransmitter levels. Hormone changes cause low levels of serotonin and neurotransmitter imbalances.
Antidepressant medications called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are often the first-line treatment of symptoms of serotonin deficiency such as depression and anxiety. SSRIs help your body use serotonin more efficiently.
The serotonin test measures the level of serotonin in the blood. Blood is drawn from a vein (venipuncture), usually from the inside of the elbow or the back of the hand. A needle is inserted into the vein, and the blood is collected in an air-tight vial or a syringe. Preparation may vary depending on the specific test.
Getting enough sleep, exercising, listening to music, meditating, and spending time in the sun can all boost dopamine levels. Overall, a balanced diet and lifestyle can go a long way in increasing your body's natural production of dopamine and helping your brain function at its best.
The following fruits had a high serotonin concentration (mean +/- SEM) expressed in micrograms/g weight: plantain 30.3 +/- 7.5; pineapple 17.0 +/- 5.1; banana 15.0 +/- 2.4; Kiwi fruit 5.8 +/- 0.9; plums 4.7 +/- 0.8; and tomatoes 3.2 +/- 0.6.
Natural antidepressants include SAM-e, St John's Wort, and omega-3-fatty acids, among others. If a person thinks they have symptoms of depression, they should speak to a doctor before trying any natural antidepressants.