Dopamine is an important neurotransmitter that has excitatory or inhibitory properties, depending on the receptors it binds to. It has a wide array of functions, but has been largely implicated in the pleasure and reward pathways and the development of addiction and thrills. It also has use in motor control and memory. You may want to increase your dopamine levels to enhance your decision-making ability and regulate cravings. Increased dopamine levels may also make you feel better about yourself, helping you in social skills. There are over-the-counter supplements available, but natural solutions are obviously the safer and more convenient method. Here are some easy to follow steps to naturally increase your dopamine levels.
- Regulate your food intake. You are what you eat. Diet has been implicated in affecting your dopamine levels. There are some foods that you have to limit the intake in order to maintain higher dopamine levels, chief among these are high sugar and foods full of saturated fats. These have been shown not only to lower dopamine levels, but pose health risks such as hypertension and diabetes. You should also cut down on caffeinated drinks and alcohol. Caffeine provides temporary spike, but you crash afterwards. Alcohol, on the other hand, has been shown to have inhibitory effects on your neurotransmitter function.
- Start a diet that is healthy for your body. A diet that is rich in fruits and vegetables is not only healthy for you, but can also increase your dopamine levels. Ripe bananas have been shown to produce dopamine quinine, the naturally occurring form of dopamine. Substituting these for dessert can uplift your mood. Other food sources include almonds, avocados and lima beans. If you are craving for small snacks, avoid junk food. Instead, eat dopamine-rich foods such as sesame and sunflower seeds. You can also add these to bland foods, such as salads, for more flavor.
- Make sure you get a lot of antioxidants. Experts also recommend you include a lot of foods that are rich in antioxidants. Dopamine is rapidly degraded and oxidized: by eliminating free radicals in your system, you increase their effect. You can find antioxidants in foods and vegetables such as blueberries, cranberries and strawberries. Supplementing your daily intake with vitamins C and E can also boost your antioxidant levels and indirectly increase your dopamine levels.
- Choose natural dopamine supplements. There are also some food supplements that can be sold over the counter. These have ingredients which can increase your dopamine levels with natural effectiveness. These products boast of a concentrated boost of vitamins and dopamine which can help your brain with memory and cognitive function.
- Exercise and get rest! Nothing beats exercise in uplifting your moods. You can enhance the regulatory neurotransmitters in your brain by a clean lifestyle. Regular exercise not only boosts your dopamine levels, but it also makes you feel better about yourself. Make sure you avoid stress as well: too much anxiety can deplete your dopamine stores and ruin your mood.
You can never go wrong with healthy living. Nature provides you the best solutions for stress and worry: clean living, healthy foods and a proper lifestyle. Make sure you follow this regimen and your dopamine levels will increase on their own, making you feel like a new and revitalized person.