Serotonin Boosting Foods With Nutritionist & Functional Medicine Practitioner Laura Lam
We caught up with Laura Lam, BSc DipBCNH mBANT mCNHC, Nutritional Therapist & Functional Medicine Practitioner to get the low down on serotonin and her top recommendations for mood boosting foods.
What is Serotonin?
First up, let's break down real quick what serotonin actually is.
Serotonin is known as the 'happy hormone' and deficiency is associated with depression and low mood. It’s also in charge of stimulating the brain that’s in control of the sleep-wake cycle, so has a huge impact on your sleep.
It’s made from protein and its production is dependent on various nutrients including B vitamins.
Foods that Naturally Boost Serotonin
Here are 6 foods to incorporate into your diet to naturally boost serotonin levels:
- Shiitake mushrooms are high in copper, which is used as a co-factor for enzymes involved in the production of serotonin.
- Oily fish are rich in omega 3 fatty acids which help to improve neurotransmission of serotonin across nerve cell membranes.
- Dark green leafy vegetables are rich in folate, which is a nutrient involved in the methylation process of serotonin production.
- Grass-fed beef is a rich source of all the B vitamins including B6 and B12, which play crucial roles in serotonin production.
- Dark chocolate is rich in magnesium - a cofactor for an enzyme called tryptophan hydroxylase which is involved in serotonin synthesis.
- Turkey is rich in the amino acid - tryptophan, which is the precursor needed to make 5-HTP and then serotonin.
As always, health is highly individual and what works for one person, might not work for you. We always recommend to seek advice from a qualified Nutritional Therapist to help guide you with the right nutrition recommendations.