Serotonin levels have been found to be closely tied to a person’s mental well-being. When they are below normal, they can have a serious negative impact on people’s lives, ranging from depression to irritability, increased anxiety, and insomnia. Before we recommend any supplements against these issues, let’s first have a look at the basics.
What is Serotonin?
In simple words, serotonin is an essential chemical for the brain, one that acts as a neurotransmitter. If it is found at low levels, the regeneration of brain cells can be affected – a common physical sign of depression.
How can supplements help?
Serotonin can be brought to normal levels using supplements that increase the amino acids which the brain will then use to produce the chemical. There are various solutions that have been found to help with this purpose, some of which we will mention later in the article.
It is important to know that, while not common, there is the chance that users of serotonin supplements develop a condition called serotonin syndrome, which happens when the brain starts producing excessive levels of the chemical. Therefore, we recommend that you consult the doctor for any problem related to mental suffering: insomnia, depression, anxiety – these can all be caused by a low serotonin level. Do not take these supplements without medical supervision.
Top Serotonin Supplements
5-HTP is an amino acid that can be found naturally in the human body and is ultimately converted into serotonin. Supplements containing 5-HTP have been proven in tests to improve mood.
Generally indicated for people with mild to moderate depression, it is believed to be effective for those who stop responding to classic antidepressants.
However, it is recommended to be taken on its own. Patients who use 5-HTP for a long term may also begin experiencing dopamine deficiency, which is another cause of depression and mood swings.
Another essential amino acid that the body uses to produce serotonin. It has been found to be especially effective for women that have mild depression.
- Green Tea
An excellent natural supplement that contains an amino acid called L-theanine. This increases both serotonin and dopamine levels. Drinking 2-5 cups of tea each day was shown in tests to reduce depression symptoms.
A compound found in turmeric, named curcumin, is considered to be one of the best choices for increasing the levels of dopamine and serotonin. As a result, it is an excellent natural choice for treating depression and anxiety.
Curcumin was also found to be much better absorbed when taken in combination with black pepper extract (piperine). Studies concluded that 500 mg, taken twice a day for 8 weeks, show signs of improvement when it comes to depression.
Magnesium is very well known and recommended for various conditions: stress, insomnia, anxiety, and depression. Deficiencies in this mineral typically lead to abnormal serotonin levels.
There are many other supplements available for this purpose – the one thing that we can recommend is to see a doctor when you feel overwhelmed. Depression, anxiety and other similar conditions are not something that you should treat by ear. Although what we provided was solid general advice, it is not until you get a checkup that you can decide what is best for you.