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  • Writer's pictureMiranda Welton

Uplifting the Mind

Serotonin is an essential hormone that elevates mood and is known as the happy hormone. Research shows that alcoholics, bulimics and compulsive eaters lack this hormone and crave substances like simple carbohydrates that help trigger its release. Lack of serotonin also triggers depression.

simple carbs
White bread and pastries

It can be a lack of this hormone that causes people to reach for stodgy foods and consume high levels of chocolate and carbohydrates – bread, pastries, biscuits and pizza, especially in the evenings as they try and produce more serotonin. Its also one reason why diets may not work for you - you can be good all day, and then as it gets darker your diet goes out the window and you reach for the sugary snacks or the wine. Depression is a problem that affects many people. Whether it’s due to the short days of winter, to stress at work, money problems or relationship issues. It can really affect your life and that of your loved ones. This has been linked to our hormone system and lack of vitamin D.

One gland can hold the key to this. The pineal gland is a very small gland located within the brain and produces the hormone melatonin that controls body rhythms. In particular our internal body clock and our sleeping and waking patterns. Once summer time begins this can really boost our hormone system.

In the dark, the pineal gland is stimulated to make and release melatonin which aids sleep patterns and produces serotonin in the day which makes us feel happy, vital and full of energy. Anti-depressants work by artificially increasing the levels of serotonin in the body but you can do this easily with natural supplements. Talking about problems is also a real help as no pill can ever replace the relief you feel to off load problems and emotions. *Always ensure you discuss reducing anti-depressants or any prescribed medicines with your doctor first. Flower Remedies can really help. Flower Remedies can offer emotional support when you’re feeling down — try Walnut, Mustard, Sweet Chestnut or Agrimony can benefit you.

Sunshine uplifts our mood, and tops up our Vitamin D levels.

Other ways to help yourself:

Go out and about and look up at the sky - if you look at people who tend to be depressed, they walk around looking downwards at the pavement, or they stay indoors and dislike being outside. A depressed person also may find it hard to look into the eyes of another person. Blue skies – especially beautiful clear ones – at any time of the year, can be very beneficial just by looking upwards. This is a natural way to boost the pineal gland.

Vitamin D—Sunscreen can diminish the bodies ability to absorb and create our own Vitamin D. There has been lots of news about this in the recent weeks. Rickets is a disease caused by lack of Vitamin D.

Don't over do sunscreen, but ensure you don't burn either by spending too much time in full sunlight. However we do need to have some sunlight on our skin. You can also take a supplement of Vitamin D, and Doctors now sometimes prescribe this, if they find a person is low in their D Levels.

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