10 Foods That Increase Dopamine Naturally
What we eat affects the formation of neurotransmitters, and some diet-related neurotransmitters have a significant effect on our mood, our appetite and our cravings.
This in turn causes the brain to communicate in the form of an impulse (craving for certain foods) the need for certain neurotransmitters that it requires to restore balance.
While many other factors influence the level of these chemicals, such as hormones, heredity, drugs, and alcohol, three neurotransmitters—dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin—have been studied in relation to food, and this research has shown that neurotransmitters are produced in the brain from components of certain foods.
When our body has enough Dopamine we’re blessed with feelings of bliss and pleasure, euphoria, appetite control, controlled motor movements, and we feel focused.
When we are low in Dopamine we feel no pleasure, our world looks colorless, we have an inability to “love”, and we have no remorse about personal behavior.
The brain cells which “manufacture” dopamine use l-phenylalanine as a “raw material” (precursor.) Phenylanine is an essential amino acid found in the brain and blood plasma that can convert in the body to tyrosine, which in turn is used to synthesize dopamine. Sources of phenylanine are high-protein foods such as meat, cottage cheese, and wheat germ.
10 Foods That Help To Increase Dopamine And Norepinephrine Naturally!
Apples: A compound found in apples called “quercetin’ is an antioxidant that studies have shown may not only help in the prevention of cancer but may also play an important role in the prevention of neurodegenerative disorders. There may be something to that old saying, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away . . .”
Banana: A banana is a good source of tyrosine. Tyrosine is the amino acid neurons turn into norepinephrine and dopamine. Norepinephrine and dopamine are excitatory neurotransmitters that are important in motivation, alertness, concentration and memory.
Beets: Betaine, an amino acid naturally present in certain vegetables, particularly beetroot (beets), is an antidepressant of the first order. Betaine acts as a stimulant for the production of SAM-e
(S-adenoslmethionine). The body cannot do without SAM-e, which it produces.
SAM-e is directly related to the production of certain hormones, such as dopamine and serotonin. Dopamine is responsible for feelings of well-being and pleasure.
Chicken: Chicken, like eggs, contains complete protein that increases levels of the excitatory neurotransmitters norepinephrine and dopamine. Chicken is also a good source of coenzyme Q10 (Co Q10), which increases the energy generating potential of neurons.
Cheese: Cheese is a well-known protein food. Protein provides amino acids, which help produce dopamine and norepinephrine.
Cottage Cheese: One of the “must eat” foods on every expert’s list, cottage cheese is recommended as a substitute for other soft cheeses and dairy products. Cottage cheese provides the protein that can help boost mood and energy levels, without some of the fat of hard cheeses.
Eggs: Research from the University of California, Berkeley suggests that people who suffer from depression have low amount of serotonin, norepinephrine and dopamine in their brains. One natural antidepressant is to increase dopamine by eating protein-rich foods. such as eggs for this purpose, because they are versatile and appeal to some people who choose not to eat meat.
Fish: Omega-3 fatty acids are found in seafood, especially mackerel, salmon, striped bass, rainbow trout, halibut, tuna, and sardines.
These fatty acids may have many jobs in the body, including a possible role in the production of neurotransmitters. Fish have easily digestible protein, many trace nutrients, high quality essential fatty acids, low cholesterol levels and low saturated fat levels. French scientists have shown that rats deficient in omega-3 fatty acids had more receptors for the neurotransmitter serotonin and a corresponding decrease in dopamine in the frontal cortex.
Watermelon: Watermelon juice is fat free and loaded with vitamins A, B6, and C! Vitamin B6 is used by the body to manufacture neurotransmitters such as serotonin, melatonin, and dopamine. Vitamin C also enhances the immune system while protecting the body from free radicals.
Wheat Germ: Wheat Germ is a good source of Phenylalanine. Phenylalanine is an essential amino acid found in the brain and blood plasma that can convert in the body to tyrosine, which in turn is used to synthesize dopamine.
A healthly, balanced diet is rich in whole “natural” and unprocessed foods. It is especially high in plant foods, such as fruits, vegetables, grains, beans, seeds and nuts. Fruits are vegetables are rich in fiber, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants that protect the body cells from damaging. They also help raise serotonin levels in the brain.
Beans and legumes are rich in protein and are healthful boosters of both dopamine and norepinephrine. Also, Protein Meat, Milk, Eggs, Cheese, fish and other seafood are very healthy, high-protein, dopamine-and-norepinephrine-booster food.
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