“Nobody is in charge of your happiness, except you.”
Our body is magically attuned to everything we feel. By sending and receiving brain signals, we interpret external stimulation, and react accordingly. All living organisms seek pleasure and avoid pain, and our brain produces many such chemicals that promote happiness.
In this article, we will:
- Have a look at 7 neurotransmitters (or chemicals), which, out of thousands of other discharged molecules in the brain, add to our satisfaction.
- Sneak peak into the brain parts that contribute to happiness.
- Take a gander at some straightforward traps to keep up their levels.
So let’s get sailing.
The 7 Chemicals of Happiness
The Pain Killing Hormone — Endorphin, also known as “the pain killer” Hormone is secreted by the pituitary gland in the brain. The endorphin particles diminish tension, stress, and trouble accordingly influencing us to feel positive and glad. There are many ways that boost endorphin, out of which exercising is the chief one. The more we exercise, the more our body releases this hormone, and make us feel good.
The Bliss Molecule — Our body discharges normal cannabis known as Endocannabinoids or Bliss Molecules. There are 85 distinctive self-discharged cannabinoids our body discharges, out of which Anandamide (got from the Sanskrit word “Ananda” which means bliss) is the most understood one. Studies have demonstrated that the level of this hormone is high in sprinters and competitors, which is the reason they are normally dauntless and fiery.
The Happiness Hormone — Serotonin is all the more usually viewed as the “Happiness Hormone” by wellbeing experts. It is the medication of decision for lessening misery. Serotonin is the certainty sponsor in our body and expands our confidence, elevating our state of mind.
The Reward Molecule — Dopamine, or the “reward molecule”, is straightforwardly connected with feeling “great or terrible”. The absence of dopamine makes us feel chafed, heedless, and miserable in general. Nourishments that are rich in protein are accepted to discharge dopamine in the body, contributing to a good mood. In outrageous circumstances, wellbeing experts additionally go for prescriptions to build the level of dopamine. Such treatments are more commonly used for depression and mood disorders.
The Inhibitory Hormone — Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid (GABA) is the regular inhibitory hormone in our body. It is utilised in treating anxiety disorders and studies have demonstrated that yoga, meditation, and mindfulness practices help in raising the level of this compound in the cerebrum, thus, making us feel good.
Adrenaline — It is the most well-known neurochemical that we associate with happiness and an elevated mood. Terms like “adrenaline kick” and “adrenaline rush” are commonly used among youngsters who are high on energy and ecstasy. On the other hand, adrenaline is also referred to as epinephrine and it is responsible for making us feel elated and is also the reason behind our fight or flight response. Depressives are regularly given doses of adrenaline to elevate their state of mind and make them cheerful. A measure of adrenaline can influence us to feel all invigorated and can be a genuine medication for weariness and trouble.
The Love Hormone — Also called oxytocin, this chemical in our brain has been directly linked to feelings of romantic attachment and trust. The warmth and comfort that we feel with the touch of a close one are due to the release of this hormone. Studies show that the depression and loneliness that couples feel after breakup or separation, is due to the lack of oxytocin in the brain.
The Connection between Our Brain and Happiness
The limbic system is the part of the brain that regulates our feelings. The limbic system is composed of 5 structures:The hippocampus, the amygdala, the thalamus, the hypothalamus, and the basal ganglia. They jointly contribute in transmitting neural signals that are responsible for our emotional experiences.
Things We Can Do to Balance Our Chemical Levels Naturally
Understanding imbalances in the neurochemical level are difficult for us. In most cases, by the time we realise there is a problem, it is already affecting us in our everyday life. Here are a few tips that can help us maintain balance in the “happy” hormones naturally.
1. Eat more “happy foods”
A variety of foods, as health professionals suggest, are helpful for keeping a healthy balance in the chemicals that make us happy.
Leafy greens — Green leaves or vegetables, taken in any form like salads or smoothies, are helpful for regulating the chemical levels in our body. People who consume green leaves and vegetables are healthier, both physically and mentally.
Bananas — Bananas are rich in potassium and are highly energising. Potassium immediately raises the energy level in our body and makes us feel active. Especially for runners and athletes, bananas are a good source of keeping them active all day.
Oats and nuts — Oats and nuts are rich in omega and low in saturated fat (especially oats). These foods are best known for reducing depression and promoting fitness. Doctors, nutritionists, and even mental health professionals advise a daily intake of these foods to keep a balance in the hormones and neurochemicals contributing to our happiness.
Hydration — A hydrated body releases stress quicker than others. Have 8-10 glasses of water a day, as they say. It doesn’t just keep your body systems working great, but it also helps you to be more active and keep a healthy mood, at all times.
2. Smile more often
Psychologists say, people who smile more often are happier than others. At a psychological level, it induces positive thinking, and at a neurochemical level, it releases the hormones of happiness (remember the bliss chemicals above?). Try these simple things that can make you smile every day.
- Be grateful for the small things in life.
- Apologise when you are wrong.
- Treat others with respect.
- Laugh out loud as often as you wish.
- Appreciate others.
- Love yourself.
3. Appreciate Nature
The power of nature is limitless and infinite. Staying close to nature instantly relieves stress and can make you feel relaxed. Researchers have shown that taking nature walks or doing outdoor activities amidst natural surroundings detoxifies our body and cures our chemical and hormonal imbalances.
People who are depressed or feel low, instantly feel rejuvenated when they spend some time admiring nature. Indulge in more activities that keep you close to nature like nature walks, sunbathing by the sea, or a day out in a lush green park.
In a Nutshell
Happiness is a subjective experience and there is no one-fit measure that is ideal for making the neurochemical adjust that is enough to make us and keep us happy. However, you can try using this rundown of 7 neurochemicals as a simple agenda to take care of your everyday propensities and to keep your life adjusted.
So focus on positive thinking, smile more often, and be thankful for the small things everyday. As Elbert Hubbard said: “Happiness is a habit, cultivate it.”