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This is how you increase your well-being – with serotonin

This is how you increase your well-being – with serotonin

Are you feeling down after the long winter months? By trying to increase your serotonin levels yourself, you can help your mental health a little along the way. Below we list some tips on how to easily boost your mental health after a long and dark winter.

Image: Unsplash

The light is finally back! Although there are many good things about winter, like cozy heaters, cool walks and thick sweaters, it is also a difficult time for many when daylight is scarce. Darkness also affects many, and risks affecting mood in many ways.

But although feelings of fatigue and depression can be very common human reactions to the winter months, it's also important to remember that there's a difference between “winter depression” and more serious mental illness, which you should always seek professional help for.

What is serotonin?

Serotonin is a signaling substance, also known as one of the body's “feel-good hormones.” It is important when it comes to many body functions, including eating, sleeping, circadian rhythm, and hormone production. Therefore there are many benefits to supporting its production in order to improve overall health and well-being. That is, low serotonin levels are associated with depression.

4 tips to increase serotonin

Catch the daylight

As we all know, there is not an abundance of sunlight at this time of year, but it is important to seize the few opportunities available to get enough natural daylight. Even during cold winter days, one needs exposure to natural light to increase serotonin levels. So, make it a priority to walk for half an hour at lunch to get a dose of daylight. Light can also relieve physiological symptoms such as headaches, tension, and difficulty sleeping.

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Review your eating habits

Like many parts of our health, part of the answer lies on the plate. The amino acid tryptophan needed to produce serotonin is obtained exclusively through the diet through poultry, meat, fish, dairy products, tofu, edamame beans, pumpkin seeds, and oats.

Raise your heart rate

Exercise helps release the amino acid tryptophan into the bloodstream. It also boosts other “feel good” hormones, endorphins. Therefore, regular exercise can contribute to improving natural mood. It could be anything from a hard session at the gym to brisk walking, jogging, dancing, cycling or swimming.

Take care of the intestinal flora

It's also important to think about gut health. Good gut health is essential to support serotonin function. To get this in order, you can find a good balance by eating foods like oats, bananas, garlic, onions, kimchi, sauerkraut, and kefir. Even colorful fruits and healthy fats like omega-3 will help you along the way.

source: luster