Mood Enhancing Supplements

Exploring Natural Mood Support: Mood Enhancing Supplements

 

Introduction

The human mind consists of a multitude of emotions, thoughts, and perceptions. Our moods play a vital role in shaping our day-to-day experiences and overall well-being. However, for some individuals, having a mood disorder casts a shadow over their lives, hindering their ability to find joy and contentment in whatever they do. In this article, we will delve into the fascinating world of mood disorders, exploring the link between mental disorders and mood imbalances. We will also shed light on various natural mood enhancers, mood vitamins, mood herbs, and mood enhancing supplements that may offer support and relief.

 

What Are Mood Disorders?

Mental health diseases known as mood disorders are defined by severe and long-lasting alterations in an individual’s emotional state. Understanding how different mental illnesses affect our wellbeing is vital since they can lead to the emergence of mood disorders. Let’s examine a couple of these conditions that impact mood.

 

1. Major Depressive Disorder

Millions of people throughout the world suffer from the common mental condition known as major depressive disorder. It is frequently characterized by extreme depression, a loss of interest in or enjoyment from activities, changes in eating or sleep patterns, and trouble focusing. Major depressive disorder patients may struggle to carry out daily chores and may have lingering sentiments of despondency. One’s mood may be significantly impacted by this disorder, leaving them feeling hopeless and unhappy.

 

2. Disorder of generalized anxiety

Another prevalent mental disease that can cause mood abnormalities is generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). Excessive worrying, restlessness, impatience, and difficulties managing anxiety are all symptoms of GAD. One’s mood can be greatly affected by a persistent state of anxiety and apprehension, which frequently results in feelings of unease. GAD can significantly impair one’s quality of life, affecting their relationships, work performance, and overall well-being.

 

3. Bipolar Disorder

Extreme changes in mood, energy, and activity levels are a hallmark of bipolar disorder, a mental condition. It causes people to experience spells of severe depression interspersed with heightened, ecstatic sensations known as mania. These sudden mood fluctuations can be very upsetting and have a negative impact on many facets of life. Manic periods can cause people to behave recklessly and have poor judgment, while depressed bouts can make them feel completely exhausted and hopeless.

4. Post-terrible Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Those who have been through extremely terrible circumstances are at risk of developing PTSD, a mental health disorder. For those who have PTSD, their terrible memories may trigger severe anxiety, flashbacks, nightmares, and intrusive thoughts. One’s capacity to maintain a stable mood might be severely impacted by the emotional distress associated with PTSD.

 

What Are Natural Mood Enhancing Supplements?

There are natural alternatives available that may help support mood and emotional well-being. While these natural mood enhancing supplements are not meant to replace professional medical treatment, they may offer complementary support. Let’s explore a few mood helping vitamins, herbs, and supplements that have gained attention for their potential benefits (3).

 

Lavender (Lavandula)

Lavender is widely known for its calming and soothing properties. It has been used to reduce anxiety, promote relaxation, and improve sleep quality. Lavender can be consumed as tea or used in essential oil form for aromatherapy, a natural mood enhancing supplement.

 

Chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla)

Chamomile is another herb known for its calming effects and mood support. It has been used to relieve anxiety, reduce stress, and promote better sleep. Chamomile tea is a popular way to consume this herb.

 

Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis)

Lemon balm is a lemon-scented mood herbs that has been traditionally used to uplift mood and reduce stress and anxiety. It may also help improve sleep quality. Lemon balm can be consumed as a tea or taken in supplement form.

 

Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera)

Ashwagandha is an adaptogenic herb that helps the body cope with stress. It has been used in traditional Ayurvedic medicine to support overall well-being, reduce anxiety, and serves as a mood improving supplement. Ashwagandha is available in powdered or capsule form.

 

Rhodiola (Rhodiola rosea)

Rhodiola is another adaptogenic herb that has been used to combat stress, increase energy levels, and enhance mood support. It is believed to work by regulating stress hormones and improving neurotransmitter balance. Rhodiola is available in supplement form.

 

Passionflower (Passiflora incarnata)

Passionflower has a long history of use in traditional medicine for its calming and sedative properties. It has been used to reduce anxiety, promote relaxation, and improve sleep quality. Passionflower can be consumed as a tea or taken in supplement form.

 

Ginseng (Panax ginseng)

Ginseng is an adaptogenic herb that has been used to support overall well-being and improve mood. It is believed to have anti-stress and anti-fatigue effects. Ginseng is available in various forms, including powders, capsules, and teas.

 

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

A class of important fats known as omega-3 fatty acids is vital for the health and function of the brain. Omega-3 fatty acids, which are present in fatty fish like salmon and mackerel, have showed promise as a mood support supplement. Eicosapentaenoic acid, docosahexaenoic acid, and alpha-linolenic acid are the three primary kinds of omega-3 fatty acids(2).

 

By lowering inflammation and enhancing neurotransmitter activity, they are thought to support brain health and mood regulation. Omega-3 fatty acids may help reduce the signs and symptoms of depression and other mood disorders, according to a number of studies. Omega-3 fatty acids are thought to improve mental health in part through lowering inflammation in the brain. Numerous mental health issues, including depression and anxiety disorders, have been related to chronic inflammation.

 

The anti-inflammatory characteristics of omega-3 fatty acids may assist to lessen the detrimental effects of inflammation on brain function. Omega-3 fatty acids are also known to affect the synthesis and function of neurotransmitters that are involved in controlling mood, emotions, and cognition, such as serotonin, dopamine, and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA). Omega-3 fatty acids may help treat mood disorders and lessen the signs of depression and anxiety by altering neurotransmitter activity (1).

 

Saint John’s Wort

Traditional medicine has  used the natural medication St. John’s Wort to treat mood-related problems. It is believed to increase serotonin’s synthesis and action, a neurotransmitter important for mood support. Given its role in promoting emotions of happiness and well-being, serotonin is frequently referred to as the “feel-good” neurotransmitter.St. John’s Wort has been studied for its potential in treating mild to moderate depression, with some evidence suggesting that it may be as effective as certain antidepressant medications.

 

Vitamin D

The “sunshine vitamin,” often known as vitamin D, is essential for mood support and preserving good mental health. When we are exposed to sunlight, our bodies naturally create vitamin D, but many people may not have enough of it, particularly in the winter or for those who spend little time outside. Low vitamin D levels have been associated with an increased risk of mood disorders like depression, according to research (5).

 

According to studies, taking vitamin D supplements may improve overall wellbeing and minimize the signs of depression. Vitamin D receptors have been found in brain areas linked to mood control. It is important to have your levels checked by a doctor before starting a vitamin D pill because too much of it can be harmful.

 

Saffron

The Crocus sativus flower is the source of the spice known as saffron, which has been used in traditional medicine for a number of maladies for ages. Saffron may have potential as a natural mood enhancer, according to recent studies. It contains a number of bioactive substances, such as the neurotransmitters serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine-influencing crocin and safranal. Studies suggest that saffron may help alleviate symptoms of depression and anxiety by modulating serotonin levels in the brain.

 

B Vitamins

The B vitamins are involved in numerous biochemical processes in the body, including the synthesis of neurotransmitters, the chemical messengers that transmit signals between brain cells.

 

Neurotransmitters such as serotonin, dopamine, and GABA are responsible for regulating mood, emotions, and cognitive function. Deficiencies in B vitamins have been linked to an increased risk of mood disorders, including depression. Therefore, ensuring an adequate intake of these vitamins is crucial for maintaining optimal brain health and promoting a positive mental state. B6, also known as pyridoxine, is a water-soluble vitamin that participates in the synthesis of several neurotransmitters. It is a cofactor in the conversion of the amino acid tryptophan into serotonin, a neurotransmitter associated with feelings of well-being and happiness. Serotonin imbalance has been implicated in depression and other mood disorders.

 

B6 is involved in the production of dopamine, a neurotransmitter involved in motivation, reward, and pleasure. Studies have shown that individuals with low levels of B6 are more likely to experience symptoms of depression and anxiety. Folate, or vitamin B9, is essential for DNA synthesis and cell division. It is especially important during periods of rapid cell growth, such as pregnancy and early childhood. Folate deficiency has been linked to an increased risk of neural tube defects in infants and has been associated with cognitive decline and depression in adults. Folate is involved in the metabolism of homocysteine, an amino acid that, when present in high levels, is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and cognitive impairment.

 

Neurological symptoms like weariness, cognitive issues, and even behavioral illnesses can result from vitamin B12 deficiency. An increased incidence of depression has been linked to low levels of B12, especially in elderly persons. Since animal products naturally contain vitamin B12, it’s crucial for vegetarians and vegans to make sure they consume enough of it. B vitamin supplementation, either separately or in a compound, may enhance healthy brain function and elevate mood support. Many people discover that taking a B-complex vitamin, which combines the B vitamins B6, B9, and B12, offers all-encompassing assistance for mental health.

 

Whole grains, legumes, leafy greens, nuts, seeds, eggs, dairy products, and lean meats are among the foods high in B vitamins. You can guarantee a proper intake of B vitamins to support ideal brain function and mental health by include these items in your diet.

 

Probiotics 

When we think of bacteria, the term “good bacteria” might seem counterintuitive. However, there is a group of bacteria that reside in and on our bodies that are not only beneficial to us but, in certain situations, even necessary for our life. These bacteria play a crucial role in maintaining our health and well-being, and their impact extends beyond our physical health to our mental well-being. This is where probiotics come into the picture.

 

Probiotics are live microorganisms that, when consumed in adequate amounts, confer health benefits to the host. They work by colonizing our gut, which is home to a complex ecosystem known as the gut microbiome. Recent studies have shown that an individual’s mental health appears to be influenced by the type of bacteria that inhabit their intestines. This growing body of research suggests that probiotics have the potential to positively  serve as a mood helping vitamin and impact mental health by modulating the gut microbiome.

 

One of the key ways in which probiotics can affect mental well-being is by influencing the bacterial environment in our stomach. By increasing the levels of certain beneficial gut bacteria, probiotics help create a healthier and more diverse gut microbiome. This, in turn, has a range of positive effects on mental health.

 

Research has shown that increased levels of the right gut bacteria can help reduce inflammation and cortisol, a stress hormone. Chronic inflammation has been associated with various mental health disorders, including depression and anxiety. By reducing inflammation, probiotics can potentially alleviate symptoms associated with these conditions.

 

Probiotics have also been shown to aid with memory enhancement and cognitive performance. Studies have demonstrated that specific probiotic strains can improve memory and concentration and even encourage neurogenesis, the growth of new brain cells. The gut-brain axis, a two-way communication link between the gut and the brain, is assumed to be the mechanism by which these effects are mediated.

 

Probiotics may aid with depression and social anxiety symptoms in addition to improving memory. According to several research, some probiotic strains can lessen the symptoms of social anxiety by regulating the activity of brain areas related to emotional processing and stress response. Research suggests that probiotics may be able to help restore the equilibrium, and they have also demonstrated promise in reducing the signs and symptoms of depression. The emerging field of psychobiotics explores the potential of using probiotics as a therapeutic intervention for psychological problems. The idea behind psychobiotics is that by altering or rearranging the gut flora, we can positively impact our mental health.

 

The benefits of probiotics might differ based on the strain and dosage, and it is crucial to remember that not all probiotics are made equal. Different bacterial strains have various characteristics and can have various effects on mental health. Therefore, it is essential to pick probiotic strains that have been extensively researched for their advantages to mental health.

 

It is advised to speak with a healthcare provider before contemplating probiotics for mental health so they can advise you on the right strains and dosages depending on your particular needs and health situation. They can offer advice on probiotic supplements or suggest foods that are high in probiotics to promote gut health and possibly enhance mental wellness.

 

Conclusion

Mood disorders can have a negative effect on a person’s mental health and general quality of life. Effective management and therapy depend on an understanding of how mental diseases and mood disorders are related. Prior to introducing natural mood boosters, vitamins, herbs, and supplements into your regimen, it is crucial to speak with a healthcare provider. They can aid in determining your precise requirements, advise you on proper dosages, and make sure there are no potential drug conflicts with any that you could be taking. Keep in mind that mental health is a complex issue, and the best way to manage mood disorders and advance general wellbeing is frequently a multifaceted strategy that combines therapy, lifestyle changes, and expert assistance.

 

 

References

  1. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24757497/
  2. https://www.psychiatrist.com/jcp/depression/meta-analysis-effects-eicosapentaenoic-acid-epa-clinical/
  3. https://www.webmd.com/diet/features/herbs-vitamins-and-supplements-used-to-enhance-mood
  4. https://www.webmd.com/vitamins-and-supplements/what-to-know-about-vitamin-d-and-mental-5.health#:~:text=Vitamin%20D%20is%20as%20vital,of%20having%20vitamin%20D%20deficiency