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SAD and the secrets of Serotonin
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Improving your Serotonin levels


© M. TOURAINE (RF)-PIXLAND / Jupiterimages
Here are some simple steps to improving your serotonin levels now:

‘Eat high tryptophan foods like tofu, most soy products, black-eyed peas, turkey, fish and spinach ,’ says Dr Longmore.

‘Take time, at least 15 minutes a day, to stretch out,’ says Dr Gonzaga. ‘This will help relieve tension. Why not sign up to yoga or pilates.’

Take some vitamin and mineral supplements, specifically vitamins B3, B6 and C, and magnesium and zinc, to help tryptophan do its job.

‘Bundle up in your warmest clothes and go for a walk in your lunch break,’ says Dr Gonzaga. Exercise, fresh air, and sunlight are all essential for stimulating serotonin.

’Serotonin receptors are stimulated by carbohydrates and most strongly by simple sugars,’ says Dr Longmore. ‘So the fastest way to a quick serotonin boost is a sugary snack or drink.’

Take control of your social diary - just because you feel like hibernating doesn’t mean you should. Meeting new people and having contact with old friends releases positive endorphins - so get out and about.

Dr Gonzaga suggests fresh air and fun
Get that holiday feeling. ‘On Saturday buy a selection of newspapers, some good coffee and some croissants,’ suggests Dr Gonzaga. ‘On Sunday serve yourself - or get your partner to serve you - a continental breakfast. You could be in a Paris hotel room!’

Speak to your pharmacist about natural supplements like Bach’s original flower remedies or 5-htp. They can advise you based on your health, symptoms or diet.

If things are really bad go and see your doctor - they may be able to
Lumie bodyclock dawn simulator
prescribe you some time in front of a natural light box, which helps stimulate serotonin production.

If mornings are particularly hard for you, try a Lumie bodyclock dawn simulator - it’s an alarm clock which gentally wakes you with a “sunrise” and naturally re-sets your sleep/wake cycle. Prices start at £58.67


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