Serotonin deficiency can be a serious issue. It can affect anyone, anywhere, and at any time during their lifetime. However, some people may be more susceptible to serotonin deficiency because of their genetics, a variety of addictions, and some other factors.
No matter the case, serotonin deficiency should be taken seriously and you should seek a method which can help fix your serotonin deficiency as soon as possible in order to get your normal life back.
The two most common conditions associated with serotonin deficiency are depression and anxiety, although there are some other conditions which can be influenced by low serotonin levels such as attention deficit disorder and insomnia. Fortunately, there are plenty of natural ways to increase your serotonin levels, as well as through the intake of supplements. One can change their diet and alter their lifestyle to correct serotonin deficiency.
Add a few supplements into the mix and your depression might become a thing of the past. But you have to keep in mind that simply going out and buying a bunch of supplements isn’t a good decision. This is because there are many different supplements out there which influence each person in a different way.
You need some information and knowledge first. Today is your lucky day, because that is exactly what we are here to do: teach you a few different things about serotonin and help you make the right decision when it comes to changing your lifestyle and choosing the right type of a supplement for yourself.
So, let’s begin.
What Is Serotonin?
Oddly enough, most people have no clue as to what exactly serotonin is. Sure, we hear the word here and there, but this information has long been forgotten. Serotonin is a hormone and neurotransmitter which is responsible for helping your brain communicate with your nervous system. It can be found in every part of your body.
This is a big deal because you have nerve endings everywhere, and in order for your brain to properly talk and send signals to each of those nerves you need serotonin. If something is screwy at the serotonin department on your brain, then your mind and your body can go through a lot of troublesome issue which are directly related to serotonin levels.
Another common name that serotonin goes by is 5-hydroxytryptamine, or 5-HT as some call it. This neurotransmitter is produced from tryptophan, a protein most commonly found in meat and dairy. The whole system is remarkably complex and mysterious. Serotonin is constantly on the move in your blood stream and communicates with dozens of different receptors to ensure all is right with your body and mind.
Serotonin is responsible for controlling when you sleep, when you are hungry, how well you are able to pay attention, and your memory as well. It also interacts with many other hormones in the body. Your body’s nervous, circulatory, and digestive systems are all working together with serotonin. It determines when you want to go to sleep, regulates your sleep cycles, and tells you when to wake up.
If you are craving something or are hungry in general, serotonin is to blame. The same goes for when you feel satisfied and not hungry at all. It is easy to see why low or high serotonin levels have such a drastic impact on our body and mind.
What Are Some Symptoms and Signs of Serotonin Deficiency?
The big problem is that since serotonin deficiency affects so many systems of the body, it can be difficult to identify which symptoms are associated with the low levels of serotonin. Low levels of serotonin can be caused by plethora of different factors which makes it hard to identify why someone might be suffering from serotonin deficiency. Some signs of possible serotonin deficiency are: severe mood swings, depression, ADD and ADHD, irritability and anger issues, anxiety, binge eating, and insomnia. All of these conditions can be a sign that your serotonin levels are out of tune.
It is very important to understand that these symptoms and signs can also be caused by serotonin levels which are simply misbalanced or elevated. This is why we suggest that you see a doctor and do a serotonin blood test. This test will help you identify the levels of serotonin in your body and whether they are normal. However, the result will not show the levels of activity of serotonin in your body or how well it’s communicating with your receptors.
This means that you will have to rely on your self-awareness to determine if serotonin deficiency is influencing your body. In other words, the blood test can point you in the right directions but ultimately the decision to increase your serotonin levels is up to you and no one else.
Natural Serotonin Supplements
Once you have talked to your doctor and had a lengthy discussion about your serotonin levels, you can proceed to seek the perfect supplement which will work for you. Unfortunately, most of today’s doctors will tell you that antidepressants are the best and only way to level out your serotonin deficiency, as well as help with anxiety and depression. The real truth is that there are many different vitamins and minerals which can help regulate your serotonin levels, but they aren’t sponsored by the big pharmaceutical companies and that is most likely why doctors typically don’t suggest using these alternative methods. Either way, here are some of the natural serotonin supplements you should consider.
This amino acid is used by our body as a precursor for serotonin production. The big issue is that enzymes in our liver have a tendency to break L-tryptophan way before it can be converted into serotonin. So, increasing the tryptophan supply to our body via supplements can reduce its depletion, which in turn will promote more serotonin synthesis, resulting in higher serotonin levels in the body.
St. John's Wort
Also known as Hypericum perforatum, this botanical wonder has been the focus of many researchers in the past few years. It is used as an alternative to antidepressants and has been speculated to have great effects when treating depression.
This little yellow flower is thought to work by blocking enzymes and moderating the uptake of serotonin and dopamine, which is kind of similar to how certain antidepressants work, such as Zoloft. There have been some studies showing that the effects of St. John’s Wort can be amplified if it is mixed with passion flower and some other herbs.
Those who are planning on using this plant as a method to increase their serotonin levels should be careful and know that standard antidepressants should not be taken while using St. John’s Wort because of certain complications which might occur due to the way both of these substances function.
In other words, do not use St. John’s Wort in combination with any other drugs or you will have a bad time.
There have been studies done which show that older adults who are taking larger amounts of vitamin B6 and B12 are less susceptible to become depressed. The reason why this is the case is because our body uses both of these vitamins to convert tryptophan into serotonin, so if we increase the intake of these vitamins then we have more room to work with when synthesizing serotonin. Overall, B vitamins are responsible for improving your mood and brain function through a simulated process of dopamine and melatonin production.
These fatty acids are believed to be vital for serotonin synthesis because of studies showing that those patients who were suffering from serotonin deficiency were also deficient in omega-3 levels. The mono- and polyunsaturated fats improve your body’s cellular function which helps neurotransmitters like serotonin functions much better.
The two most important omega-3s are docosahexaenoic and eicosapentaenoic, which can be found in cold water fish. Researchers have shown that consuming fish can improve daily functioning and sleep, which makes sense since serotonin has a direct effect on your sleep cycles and general body and mind functionality.
Final Thoughts On Natural Serotonin Supplements
Ultimately, it is absolutely up to you which method you choose to increase your serotonin levels. Keep in mind that each body is different, which means that each of these supplements might have a different effect on your specific body.
We always suggest taking things slow and paying close attention your body to determine if the specific supplement is effective or not. If you conclude that the supplement isn’t working well or your serotonin deficiency hasn’t budged, then perhaps it is time to move on to a different supplement. Make sure to give your body enough time to change when a new supplement is introduced.
You must remember that things don’t change overnight and it might take a longer amount of time to see results. Do the research. Don’t jump blindly into the supplement field and expect results without finding out how long it takes for certain supplement to make changes to your body or the proper dosage levels. Above all, be cautious. Try not to mix different drugs with your supplements. This way you can know for a fact that whatever reaction your body has is directly tied to that specific supplement.