Are your hormones happy?
From the day we are born, our hormones determine our appetites, our sleep patterns, how we deal with stress, our sex lives, whether we are anxious, angry, sad or happy and pretty much everything in between. Such crafty buggers.
We have absolutely loads of hormones in the human body that do loads of different things but by far the best ones are the ones that promote positive feelings like happiness and pleasure.
These are the happy hormones that can help to naturally boost our moods:
Dopamine (the feel good hormone)
Serotonin (the happy chemical)
Oxytocin (the love hormone)
Endorphins (stress and pain relievers also feel good)
Hormones are basically chemicals that are produced by different glands throughout the body. And there are lots of ways that you can use these chemicals to boost your mood naturally:
Exercise is the best way to boost endorphins, if you’ve ever run, you know what a “runners high” feels like. And regular exercise will also increase dopamine and serotonin. No-one ever regrets going to the gym but sure as hell regrets not going when you are back in your bikini for the 10th year running thinking of how you wish you had and that one day you will eventually get sick of breathing in.
Being outdoors and getting some sunshine helps to boost endorphins and serotonin. Also gets you out the office and away from your laptop screens that are destroying everyone’s eyesight. Some of the Ox Seven team are now all wearing these weird glasses, Meg has started it, she doesn’t like being the only Deirdre Barlow in the office so we now have Will Barlow, Mollie Barlow and a Glen Barlow.
Laughing of course is always known as the best medicine and can increase levels of dopamine and endorphin levels. Will does a great job of making us laugh and keeping us all very amused most of the time. Adam and Glen come a close second with their jokes. We do all giggle a lot. Nights out, long lunches, random quizzes and Meg practising her yoga moves in a very short skirt. Mollie makes me laugh all the time with her razor sharp tongue and cutting remarks (will miss her lots) and I pretty much find anything that Lisa says as funny, probably because of her Northernishness.
Food is enjoyable anyway but certain foods are known to help the happy hormone levels too. If you’ve ever eaten a Love bar from Pret a manger you’ll know exactly what I mean. Danny B would argue that a good steak would suffice or a KFC or a nice curry. TBH we all love our food at Ox Seven, lunch time is always a happy time except when food has been provided and me and Danny B can’t eat any of it.
Massage helps with all 4 happy hormones (Lisa we are onto a winner here ; ) we all love a good stroke and having a good massage is just one of the best things ever.
Stroking your pet, dog or cat or any other furry creature (feeling sorry for the inside out cat already) can help with Oxytocin levels.
Sex or even just kissing and cuddling is the best way to boost Oxytocin and face it, its quite a nice way to get happy.
Random acts of kindness 17th Feb was actually RAK day and also my birthday. I was too hungover to do any of those on that day but do do them quite often. Research shows that performing a RAK can increase those happy hormones no end, can be something simple like holding the door open for someone or carrying someones shopping, giving a homeless person a hot drink or a chocolate bar. Makes you feel good and so the other person, kindness when shown will be returned by that person to another and so on.
Music is a brilliant way to boost your mood. We listen to it all day long in the office, sometimes it pop, sometimes dance music, rock music (sometimes my nose bleeds), lots of indie but never dreary and boring. Musicians experience a natural high when they play. Serotonin, endorphins and dopamine are released when listening to, playing or performing. Dancing is a brilliant way to get happy, who doesn’t love to dance? Even if you are a donkey you can dance #savethedonkeys
So you know what to do to get happy and stay happy: Exercise, get some fresh air, eat well, sleep well, stroke a pet or someone else, get or give a massage, love more often, perform random acts of kindness, listen to music, dance and find something or someone who makes you laugh out loud. We all deserve to be happy.
Health & Wellness Consultant