We predict that supplementing with vitamin D, omega-3 fatty acids, and other key micronutrients to reach sufficiently high serum levels will boost serotonin production and function in the brain, thereby improving cognitive function and limiting impulsive behavior.
Brain serotonin is synthesized from tryptophan by tryptophan hydroxylase 2, which is transcriptionally activated by vitamin D hormone.
Research has found that the symptoms of SAD coincide with a reduction in vitamin D3, which in turn affects serotonin levels in the brain. For years, vitamin D blood levels of 20 ng/mL – which stands for nanograms per milliliter – were considered within the normal range.
Vitamin B6, also known as pyridoxine, has special importance as a precursor of serotonin and tryptophan and can also play a role in behavior and mood.
In addition to its well-known role in calcium absorption, vitamin D activates genes that regulate the immune system and release neurotransmitters (e.g., dopamine, serotonin) that affect brain function and development.
A rise in serotonin levels in your body causes serotonin syndrome. This increase in serotonin can happen if you: Take more than one medication that affects serotonin levels. Recently started on a medication or increased the dose of a medication known to increase serotonin levels.
Higher levels of anxiety, depression and internalizing problems but not atypicality were associated with lower levels of vitamin D. Vitamin D insufficiency may relate to higher levels of anxiety and depression, in turn contributing to the elevated risk of psychosis in this population.
Vitamin D is a key nutrient for your mental and physical health. Studies have found that low vitamin D levels are linked to depression and that taking vitamin D supplements may help improve depression symptoms in people with low vitamin D levels.
Conclusion: Vitamin D3 supplementation in children with ADHD can increase serum dopamine levels, but further studies are needed to determine the effects of vitamin D on neurotrophic factors and serotonin.
“Adding an over-the-counter vitamin D supplement can make improvements in just three to four months' time. Vitamin D with a strength of 1000-2000 international units daily is the recommended dose for most adults,” Dr. Ropte says.
The study found that taking vitamin D supplements significantly decreased anxiety levels in women suffering from type 2 diabetes. Another study found that those suffering from anxiety had lower levels of calcidiol. Broken down vitamin D produces the byproduct, calcidiol.
Indeed, vitamin D was reported to modulate the biosynthesis of neurotransmitters and neurotrophic factors; moreover, its receptor was found in the central nervous system.
Vitamin D deficiency presents similar symptoms to those of depression: Mood changes accompanied by overwhelming feelings of hopelessness, sadness, and hopelessness.
B vitamins are also responsible for keeping the nervous system functioning accordingly. Vitamin B6, specifically, is the B vitamin that is responsible for the production of serotonin. The recommended amount to consume for the average adult is 1.3mg.
Vitamin D is a potential antidepressant in psychiatric outpatients.
B vitamins, such as folate and vitamins B6 and B12, may help treat depression.
a poor diet. chronic stress. a lack of exposure to natural light. inadequate exercise levels.
Ways to Boost Serotonin and Dopamine
Start with something easy, such as taking a walk. Change your diet: Coffee has been shown to increase serotonin and dopamine levels, although it can lead to withdrawal if you decide to cut back. Eating foods high in omega-3 fatty acids boosts serotonin levels.
The two serotonin antagonist/reuptake inhibitors (SARIs), trazodone and nefazodone, inhibit serotonin reuptake and, to varying degrees, block serotonin 5-HT2A and 5-HT2C receptors.
An intervention study reported that vitamin D supplementation (D3) in veterans (50,000 IU/week) increased their sleep duration . Another double-blind clinical trial showed use of vitamin D supplementation (50,000 IU/fortnight for 8 weeks) facilitated sleep duration and quality in people with sleep disorder .
Taking It Late in the Day May Affect Sleep
Research links vitamin D levels to sleep quality. In fact, several studies associate low levels of vitamin D in your blood to a higher risk of sleep disturbances, poorer sleep quality and reduced sleep duration ( 9 , 10 , 11 ).
Increasing serotonin levels can be done naturally. The best ways to do this are eating serotonin-boosting foods, getting out in the sun or supplementing with vitamin D, exercising, taking adaptogens, and managing stress. Serotonin can also be increased synthetically, with antidepressants.