Happiness is an emotional state that everyone strives for. We often look for happiness in certain people, experiences, and activities which make us feel calm and joyful. This all happens because of the chemical reactions in our brain through certain chemical messengers called hormones. The chemical messengers that lead to the sense of joy and happiness are called “Happy hormones”.
There are 4 happy hormones that we can boost by choosing certain activities. These hormones are
How do you release happy hormones?
Understanding the significance of these hormones within the brain and body and their affect on mental health implies you’ll be able take simple steps to increase their levels normally. Most of you think about what foods release happy hormones and how to boost happiness hormones in everyday life. In this article, we will discuss the best ways to release happy hormones.
Serotonin is also called 5-hydroxytryptamine, which is the mood stabilizer. 90% of the serotonin is produced by the gut and 1-2% of it is produced by the brain. Serotonin has a wide impact on our mood, cognition level, sleep, and memory. We can release serotonin in both the gut and brain naturally by practicing certain activities in our everyday life. This will help us in improving our body’s normal function and will help us to improve mental health without taking any medication.
Consuming tryptophan rich food:
The tryptophan-rich protein food helps to boost serotonin production in our gut. It can be found in meat (salmon, turkey, chicken), dairy (cheese. egg), fruits (banana, pineapple), nuts, pumpkin seeds, and oats. Subsequently, apart from the body’s normal serotonin production, tryptophan consumption through the specified nourishment would increase serotonin levels.
Getting enough sunlight:
Research has shown that exposure to sunlight boosts serotonin production in the brain which helps uplift your mood and prevent depression. That’s insufficient exposure to sunlight during winters drops the serotonin levels, which can seasonal affective disorder (SAD), brought on by the change of season. This is how the serotonin uptake at the daylight through the sun will help you to improve not only the mood throughout the day but also helps in getting restful sleep at night through the production of melatonin, which works in pain with serotonin.
Serotonin levels can be increased by self-induced changes in mood. This could be achieved by practicing meditation which will improve our positive emotions. Mindfulness meditation can be done by paying attention to the breath while inhaling and exhaling and take note when the mind diverts from this task. This practice helps in building the muscles of attention and mindfulness and helps in learning how to return to and stay within the present moment without any judgment.
Being active and exercise:
Research shows that exercise helps in improving serotonin activity in the brain. This mechanism might be due to the metabolism of food containing tryptophan. Aerobic exercises are the best for increasing metabolism.
Dopamine is a neurotransmitter produced by the dopaminergic neurons in the midbrain.
The feel-good hormone or the reward chemical, which triggers the brain reward system and allows you to feel satisfied and motivated through the goals you have achieved. You can also boost up your dopamine levels by practicing certain activities in everyday life.
Consuming l-tyrosine rich food:
L- tyrosine is an essential amino acid required for the synthesis of dopamine. However, consuming food rich in this protein boosts our dopamine levels and helps us to find be focused and motivated. You can increase your dopamine levels by eating fruits (apple, banana, watermelon, avocado), all animal products, nuts, seeds (pumpkin, sesame), green leafy vegetables, chocolates, oats, and green tea.
Completing a task:
Setting your goals and achieving them on time keeps you motivated and happy by releasing dopamine. If you are a student, set your goal of reading or learning a new chapter per day. If you are a homemaker and you must do your laundry, then complete this on time and boost up your dopamine levels.
Celebrating small wins:
Not only complete your task on time but also celebrate them while treating yourself. Treat yourself a good food after doing homework or watch a movie after completing that laundry work.
Selfcare is also important for your physical and mental wellbeing, and this can also be achieved by boosting up your dopamine levels. Higher quantities of dopamine will be released if you achieve your ideal body shape and weight and do your skin or hair care routine. . This also corresponds with achieving a goal.
Oxytocin is also known as the cuddle or the love hormone. Research has shown that a normal level of oxytocin will increase life satisfaction levels. It is also important for childbirth, breastfeeding, and a strong parent-child relationship. It is associated with affectionate touch and close relationships. In women, it plays a vital role in bringing happiness more than men.
Spending time with loved ones:
Oxytocin levels can be increased by spending time with people you are affectionate towards. That’s why you often feel happy and comfortable when you are surrounded by your loved ones.
One of the fastest ways to boost up your oxytocin level is physical touch The skin-to-skin contact between mother and an infant or child can improve the parent-child bond by releasing oxytocin. Physical affection between partners can also increase oxytocin levels even through eye contact or holding hands. Hugging a pet can also help.
By increasing your vitamin D, vitamin C, and magnesium intake:
Vitamin D Is called the happy vitamin as it is the prohormone to oxytocin and other happy hormones. Getting enough sunlight, fatty fish, mushrooms, and eggs will help you to gain vitamin D.
Citrus fruits, tomatoes, and peppers are rich sources of vitamin C which can boost up your oxytocin levels.
Magnesium is essential for the oxytocin receptors to work. This would be helped by eating spinach, avocado, dark chocolate, and pumpkin seeds.
Listening to music:
Singing and listening to music improves oxytocin levels. The group singing is proved by the evidence to stimulate salivary oxytocin production. Also, music with a slow tempo produces a calming effect on an individual by releasing more oxytocin.
Endorphin is called the natural pain reliever or the feel-good hormone. It is released naturally by the body in response to pain and stress. However, certain activities can increase the level of endorphin to reduce the level of pain perception and to increase happiness.
Moderate to high-intensity exercise:
Endorphin levels can be increased by 30 minutes of moderate to high-intensity aerobic exercise. Research has shown that exercise with peers boosts more endorphin levels as compared to exercise alone. Happiness caused by moderate aerobic exercise can be expressed as the state of euphoria called runner’s high.
The endorphin levels can also be improved by helping, volunteering, and giving either in the form of gifts, charity, and even any form of support.
It has been proved by the research that laughing improves endorphin levels in the body. this can be done by watching comedy movies, reading comic books, and have lively conversations with friends and family.
Eating certain food:
Vitamin C is proved to increase endorphin release in the body. Hence banana and citrus fruits are the best to improve endorphin levels. Also, dark chocolates and spicy foods are popular to boost the high quantity of endorphin levels in the body. Dark chocolate is proven by studies to control depressive symptoms in individuals.
Joy is inside your control, to improve this, a;; you have to do is to find the best ways to release happy hormones in everyday life and make yourself feel better either by being active or by eating a healthy diet.
We feel good when any one of these chemicals is released. However, each happy hormone has a special task to do, and they get turned off when that task is completed, so they alert you to do the next good thing. That’s why we need to be indulged in healthy activities and choose our happy habits wisely to stimulate our happy hormones without any bad consequences. Treat yourself to a well-balanced happiness diet. Search for more of what foods release happy hormones. Remember that too much or too little would be harmful to your health. Change your good habits with time so that you can’t get bored of doing the same things for longer.