Dopamine is a neurotransmitter, a molecule that transmits information between two neurons.
It is released by neurons within the synapse (the space between neurons) before binding to receptors on the opposite neuron and transmitting the chemical message.
After the information is passed onto the next neuron, 80% of the released dopamine is recovered by the neuron that sent the message, and the rest is converted to homovanillic acid (or HVA), a catabolite (a breakdown product of dopamine).
The neurons that produce dopamine are located in the central part of the brain, the midbrain, and radiate from there to reach different areas of the brain.
How to increase your dopamine levels naturally?
To increase your dopamine levels naturally, watch your diet. The first piece of advice is to prefer foods rich in tyrosine, an amino acid that stimulates the production of dopamine.
It’s found in bananas, chocolate, avocados, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, almonds, and even eggs and cheese.
These are the best ways to increase the level of dopamine in the body without any form of medication.
Pet an animal
Several studies have shown that petting a dog, cat, or other pet can be soothing.
And there’s a good reason this gesture promotes the release of several happy hormones, including oxytocin, serotonin, and dopamine.
To increase the level of dopamine production in the body. It is best to identify the natural habits and situations that help stimulate this.
Athletes know that regular physical activity brings a sense of well-being
This is due to the release of dopamine during and after training. But this is not the only thing that is active during a session.
Endorphins, which have analgesic (pain-relieving) and anti-anxiety effects; adrenaline, which stimulates the body; and noradrenaline, a hormone known to promote fat loss, are also circulating.
You may also want to jump in a cold shower (cold water). In fact, taking a cold shower at around 4 degrees Celsius significantly increases the levels of dopamine produced by dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra of the brain.
Additionally, cold water stimulates blood circulation, strengthens the immune system, maintains skin firmness and elasticity, and promotes sleep.
Exposure to natural light
Another method of reflection is to expose yourself to outside light on a regular basis. The latter actually increases the production of dopamine by the retina.
This is why morale tends to drop during the winter when there is little daylight. These are natural examples of situations that can help increase dopamine production.
Listen to music
Take the time to listen to your favorite songs on a regular basis. The Clinic for Stress and Anxiety Management (CGSA) explains that music reduces levels of the stress hormone cortisol and stimulates the brain’s nucleus accumbens.
This leads to an increase in the level of this hormone due to the reduction of the stress hormone cortisol.
Functions of dopamine and how does it make you happy?
Dopamine is involved in many functions but has only a few specific receptors. Therefore, it plays a role in motor control, attention, sleep, memory, cognition, pleasure, and motivation.
Normal dopamine levels make you feel good and promote learning, productivity, and planning.
Dopamine must be present in neurons in areas of the brain that not only allow movement to be performed but also affect intellectual and emotional functioning.
This neurotransmitter is also involved in the reward system, a brain circuit essential for survival that provides humans with the motivation necessary to perform behaviors that result in pleasure, reward, or avoidance of punishment.
In this context, dopamine is released only when a positive action brings immediate pleasure. This causes the person to repeat the behavior that led to that pleasure in the future.
Through this action, dopamine enhances the learning of certain behaviors that lead to pleasure. For example, eating chocolate gives us immense pleasure.
Tobacco, marijuana, and other drugs cause feelings of pleasure, which release more dopamine in your synapses.
The brain associates this behavior with a positive signal and tries to repeat it.
Dopamine is a neurotransmitter released by the brain that causes feelings of pleasure and satisfaction.
If this chemical is not removed properly, it can lead to fatigue, a lack of energy, and even poor concentration. Fortunately, there are several ways to increase dopamine levels naturally to avoid these disadvantages.
Domaine is pleasure and An action
Dopamine helped our ancestors survive by releasing energy to fulfill important needs (gathering, hunting, fishing, etc.). Dopamine is a hormone that triggers the reward circuit.
The mammalian brain is constantly scanning the world for potential rewards, and dopamine signals that it has found a reward.
This release is triggered by situations that the brain finds pleasurable and that produce pleasurable sensations (such as eating chocolate).
You can record information that will lead to that pleasure again in the future. The joy we experience inspires us to take action to achieve our goals and motivates us to start again.
Therefore, there is a real risk of dopamine addiction. So beware of addiction. Telling yourself I did it frequently as you build new dopamine circuits allows you to celebrate small wins and release more dopamine.
There are some good ways to increase levels of this neurotransmitter, but they can be unbalanced when it comes to regulation.
Fortunately, as mentioned above, there are natural supplements on the market that are proven to increase dopamine levels. Please try it out.
Have you ever wondered how music makes you happy? Sometimes we feel down, but as soon as we play our favorite songs, we smile again and feel confident.
The reason is that listening to music increases dopamine levels. In fact, scientists say it has the same effect as eating your favorite food or watching your favorite TV show.
So when you are feeling down, listen to your favorite song and let the tune carry you far away.
- Bhatia A, Lenchner JR, Saadabadi A. Biochemistry, Dopamine Receptors. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK538242/) [Updated 2021 Jul 22]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2021 Jan-. Accessed 3/23/2022.
- Briguglio M, Dell’Osso B, Panzica G, et al. Dietary Neurotransmitters: A Narrative Review on Current Knowledge (https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29748506/). Nutrients. 2018;10(5):591. Accessed 3/23/2022.
- National Institute on Drug Abuse. Introducing the Human Brain. (https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugs-brains-behavior-science-addiction/drugs-brain) Accessed 3/23/2022.