Endorphins

Endorphins

Endorphins are hormones and neuro-signalling molecules that function as painkillers. They inhibit the transmission of pain signals in the central nervous system by binding to opioid receptors (the body’s natural morphine).

Endorphins & dopamine are often confused because each one is a chemical that makes you happy in the broad sense of the term. However, they are in some ways related because, when endorphins bind to receptors of the central nervous system, dopamine (the pleasure hormone) is released.

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Healthy Eating & Nutrition

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Hormones and Neurotransmitters

Hormones are chemicals produced by various glands, called the endocrine system, whose primary function is to communicate between two glands or between a gland and an organ focusing on: mood regulation, pleasure, pain relief etc.

Neurotransmitters are like hormones but they are produced in the brain and send messages using the nervous system.

Serotonin - the happy hormone

It is essential for mood, digestion, sleep, brain function, and circadian rhythm. It seems to be “involved in everything but responsible for nothing”: Low serotonin has been noted in depression, but increasing serotonin levels in depressed people doesn’t reliably work.

Up to 90% of your body’s serotonin is produced in the gut where it can act as a hormone or a neurotransmitter. This means that you can make yourself happier by eating better.

Oxytocin - the bonding hormone

Oxytocin promotes bonding & trust, and it is particularly active during childbirth where it stimulates contractions. As a neurotransmitter it helps regulating stress responses & calm the nervous system.

Higher blood oxytocin levels have been linked to greater perceived love, responsiveness, and gratitude in couples.

It makes you happy while also keeping you alive & alert. This chemical is part of the brain’s reward system — it’s what gives you pleasurable sensations and keeps you coming back for more. Dopamine is considered to be the motivational cog in this system, and it’s naturally released when you perceive food or sex, but before you consume it.

50% is produced in the gut so diet plays a big role in this motivation hormone.

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What Serotonin Is

Serotonin (also known as 5-hydroxytryptamine or 5-HT) is a naturally occurring substance that functions as a neurotransmitte to carry signals between nerve cells (called neurons) throughout your body.

Most commonly, people are aware of serotonin's role in the central nervous system (CNS).

What Is Serotonin and How Does It Regulate Bodily Functions?

verywellmind.com

What you eat affects your mind

Modern science suggests that the gut may play a role in mood disorders and our mental health.

The gut is covered in nerve cells, or neurons, which are foundational to our brains. This network in our gut is known as the enteric nervous system or "second brain".

Gut instinct: how your diet shapes your mind

theguardian.com

Gut Microbiome
  1. The term “gut microbiome” refers specifically to the microorganisms living in your intestines.
  2. A person has about 300 to 500 different species of bacteria in their digestive tract.
  3. While some microorganisms are harmful to our health, many are incredibly beneficial and even necessary to a healthy body.
  4. Having a wide variety of these good bacteria in your gut can enhance your immune system function, improve symptoms of depression, help combat obesity, and provide numerous other benefits.

7 Signs of an Unhealthy Gut and 7 Ways to Improve Gut Health

healthline.com

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