11 Ways To Increase Serotonin (Happy Chemical) Naturally

Serotonin has been touted as the substance of well-being and happiness. While some people think that serotonin is a neurotransmitter in the brain, huge portion of it is found in the gut. Lack of it can result in depression and other psychological issues. So, it’s vital to maintain or even increase serotonin level naturally in the body.

Before going further, having a good grasp on serotonin could be helpful in promoting to increase serotonin level. It could provide certain reasons to put conscious effort into increasing serotonin using natural means.

How To Increase Serotonin Naturally?

Serotonin has been a component of depression medications, SSRI(Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors). However, these medications come with many adverse side effects1. This is why aiming at natural methods to increase serotonin level matters.

Let us take a quick look at how to increase serotonin level in the body using natural ways. Of course, some people may find these overwhelming. However,  doing one or two of these natural serotonin-boosting means is a good start.

Moreover, maintaining healthy lifestyle practices including healthy eating regimen and staying active physically are among the primary ways of boosting serotonin level.

Now let us go over on what can you do to increase serotonin level without opting for medications. When you do these or at least a few of these things, you’ll be able to increase this happiness and well-being substance, not only in the brain but also in the gut.

Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that influences various functions in the body including mood, sleep cycle, memory and, libido.

1. Eat Tryptophan-Rich Foods

Increase Serotonin with Tryptophan-Rich Foods

Serotonin is synthesized from tryptophan. Hence, it makes sense to eat foods rich in tryptophan, which is an amino acid for biosynthesizing proteins.

Among the tryptophan-rich foods, you should be eating regularly include nuts and seeds, lean meats, dairy, and eggs.

2. Regular Massage

Whole Body Massage

Having a regular trip to a massage spa is a good idea, and it can naturally increase serotonin in the body. Massage feels so relaxing as it reduces the stress hormone, cortisol.

The stress hormone cortisol spikes during stressful situations and high level of cortisol block the production of serotonin. This is where the benefits of a massage therapy come into play2.

Moreover, a sensual massage done by your partner is even better.

3. Take B-Vitamins Supplementation

Vitamin B Rich Foods and Supplements

Studies3 found the importance of B-Vitamins for brain function and production of serotonin. In one study4, researchers found the importance of B-vitamins in treating depression.

Although there are many foods rich in B-vitamins, it may not be enough. Hence, taking B-vitamins supplement can help in maintaining and even increasing serotonin production in the body.


4. Regular Sun Exposure

Regular Sunlight Exposure

The sun is an excellent and unlimited source of the right kind of Vitamin D. Additionally, sun exposure also initiates serotonin production. Therefore, make it a habit to wake up, and perhaps, become a morning person and experience sunlight exposure daily.

This makes sense why serotonin can help with the proper sleep cycle. Waking up in the morning regularly resets the body’s circadian rhythm in its natural state. Eventually giving that good feeling experience during the day and achieving good sleep at night.

5. Have Enough Magnesium

Magnesium-rich foods and supplements

Magnesium involves many processes in the body earning its name as one of the most important minerals.

Unfortunately, there are many people at risk of magnesium deficiency, particularly in the United States5. Therefore, make sure you get enough magnesium through diet and even taking magnesium supplementations is helpful.


6. Maintaining A Positive Attitude

Attitude Increase Serotonin

One of the helpful positive attitudes to maintain is the gratitude attitude. It helps the sense of well-being and feeling good.

Additionally, maintaining and having good attitudes boost heart health. Shifting from negative to positive attitudes is among the internal works that boost serotonin production. Hence, we should not only rely on external ways alone but also focus inwardly and cultivate that positive attitudes.

Changing negative to positive attitudes and consciously making that positive self-talk at all times can have a positive influence on the brain.

Doing the things you enjoy produces good feelings. And, believe it or not, these patterns of positivity can induce the body to produce more serotonin.

7. Minimize Sugar Consumption

Eat Less Sugar

Today, the food industry makes food cheaper and widely available. Unfortunately, the majority of cheap foods contain a high amount of added sugars.

Why is it bad? Well, research has found that eating a high amount of added sugars can cause depression, particularly in men. And, what’s even more shocking, depression is linked to inflammation.

Hence, start educating yourself on hidden sugars added in most packaged foods in order to effectively minimize sugar consumption. Shockingly, there was a hidden study uncovered recently on the harmful effects of sugar.

As matter of fact, eating a high amount of sugar has been known to feed cancer cells.

8. Start A Regular Meditation Practice

Positive Impact of Meditation on Serotonin

A regular meditation practice can bring your life to the next level. There are many known benefits of mediation such as;

These are just among the known benefits of meditation. With regular practice, it helps increase serotonin production in the body. When you meditate, it increases the 5-HIAA acid in the brain6.

Particularly, one meditation technique known as the transcendental meditation7 has been found to not only increase serotonin but also noradrenaline and dopamine.

9. Regular Exercise

Engaging in regular exercise is vital especially for the brain. Study finds that 10 days of inactivity reduces blood flow to the brain. This is why regular exercise is particularly important for seniors as it helps maintain their motor skills.

When it comes to exercise, don’t limit yourself to activities you can do in the gym. In fact, any physical activity that keeps your heart pumping blood to your entire body is good for serotonin production.

For instance, brisk walking, running, or if you’re pumped, do HIIT. This is probably why HIIT is such as vital exercise and the top exercise in a recent survey.

Moreover, regular exercise helps produce chemicals in the body that involve positive feeling like endorphins, which enhances mood easily and effectively.

It is also worth mentioning that regular exercise produces a Viagra-like effect that can significantly enhance your sex life. Of course, exercise is an effective natural memory booster.

10. Have A Good Dose Of Vitamins

One of the natural ways to boost serotonin level in the body is taking vitamins. In particular, Vitamin C plays a significant role in enhancing mood and it has an antidepressant effect, too.

One study8 finds that kiwifruit, a food containing a high amount of Vitamin C improves mood in young adult men. In a different study, has been found that Vitamin C improves the emotional state of acutely hospitalized patients.

Although Vitamin C may not have a direct influence on increasing serotonin production, for sure, it helps in the production of other neurotransmitters like dopamine and epinephrine.


11. Manage Stress and Keep It Minimal

Stress is a predictor of heart disease. It even causes negative impacts on male sperms. Fortunately, there are many natural ways to manage stress such as yoga, tai-chi, or even as simple as smelling a romantic partner’s shirt. Of course, practicing mindfulness meditation on a regular basis is just as helpful.

Why bother keeping stress to a minimum? Well, first of all, you can’t eliminate stress. That is part of life and innate response produce by the body during stressful situations.

So, never try to eliminate stress because you can’t. It can only lead to more stressful feelings. One study9 finds that stress reduces the production of serotonin.

Final Thoughts

Hopefully, this quick list of how to increase serotonin level naturally would be helpful to you. For sure, they are if you apply them and stick to them as part of your healthy lifestyle practices.

Begin looking at your nutrition very closely. Make sure you’re not eating too much highly processed foods. Instead, focus on increasing fruits and vegetable intake.

These are mood-boosting foods that can help you feel better and help boost your serotonin production. Moreover, these natural whole foods are also energy-boosting allowing you to boost productivity and performance.

Aphrodisiac foods, for instance, are not really for sexual performance only. But these foods are truly nourishing that feeds the body with the right nutrients for optimal function including the brain.

Of course, whole foods are beneficial to gut health, where most of the serotonin is produced.

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