Dopamine is the chemical which our brain uses to make us feel pleasure.
By learning how to properly stimulate and control your dopamine levels naturally, you can ensure that you are maximising your brain’s use of this single neurotransmitter, which is responsible for a plethora of physical and mental processes.
Dopamine – the drug our body produces to reward us for certain behaviours which we may experience or express. Over time, every person develops their own dopamine receptors differently, and therefore requires different stimuli in order for dopamine to be released by the body.
Just as an adrenaline junkie would get their dopamine high from doing something crazy and daring, somebody addicted to drugs also sees to their dopamine fix through self medicating with illicit substances.
Furthermore, dopamine itself is very addictive, and this goes hand in hand with regular and chronic drug use and addictions in general. Certain drugs such as heroin and cocaine are almost “super-rewarders” for the brain. These kind of opiates bind to opiate receptors in the brain and cause a huge release of dopamine upon ingestion of the chemical.
The sad thing is that when the levels of these drugs run dry, the receptors cry out for more and more. And thus addiction so easily takes over the brain and causes drug addicts to go to extreme measure in some cases, just to get their next fix. This is because the need for dopamine is REALLY that strong!
There are indeed many non-destructive ways to maintain healthy dopamine levels in our body, such things as making love, winning money, solving a puzzle and even teaching your dog a new trick, can regularly boost our pleasure neurotransmitter, without the risk of any addictive backlash.
As well as being responsible for our happiness, dopamine also regulates our muscle movement, helps keeps us focused and make decisions, whilst improving cognitive function and problem solving. it is extremely important to maintain healthy levels of dopamine throughout your life, because without high dopamine levels we tend to experience things such as depression, confusion, insomnia, illness, negative thoughts, and many other negative emotional symptoms.
So what this is basically saying is do what you love. Do whatever makes you happy enough in life to release that vital dopamine and ultimately make yourself feel good. It makes complete sense to enjoy aspects of life that you find pleasurable and give you a good feeling inside, providing of course you are not harming yourself or others by doing so.
Here are a few simple, natural ways to increase your dopamine levels daily if you are stuck for things to do.
An amino acid known as tyrosine is found in certain foods, and is easily converted into dopamine by the body. You know that feeling you get when you eat something and just kind of feel good afterwards?
Well, I think we all know how that feels, and some of these high-tyrosine containing foods are:
- Nuts (particularly almonds)
- Green Tea
- Root Vegetables
- Exotic fruits such as watermelon and kiwi
Listen to your favourite music
A fantastic way to release a boost of dopamine is by playing some of your favourite records and just rockin’ out! Music has been known to make people feel uplifted since Paleolithic times, and has been discovered to create “peak emotional movements” in the brain.
Exercising is another free, simple and natural way to elevate your D2 dopamine receptors in your brain. Regular exercise is not only good for your physical health, but can also help to relieve stress and reduce negative emotions – strengthening the mind as it strengthens the body.