When the brain is provided with an adequate amount of serotonin, normal satiety (fullness) occurs following a meal. However, if brain serotonin is low, it diminishes a feeling of fullness and is associated with carbohydrate binging.
The loss of normal satiety coupled with carb binging can obviously lead to overeating and contribute to the accumulation of body fat.
Interestingly, studies have shown that obese individuals have low blood tryptophan levels, the precursor to brain serotonin. This potentially links overeating with a serotonin deficiency in the brain.
Take the quiz and see if low brain serotonin is one of your weight gaining mechanisms.
If you are taking antidepressants,
please speak with your
doctor before starting
supplements that can raise
brain serotonin levels.
|Questions to Determine Your Level of Brain Serotonin||YES||NO|
|Do you crave sweets when under stress and/or in the afternoon?|
|Do you suffer from depression or feel ?blue? and down more days than not?|
|Is your sleep restless, with waking up many times throughout the night or not feeling rested after waking up?|
|Would you describe your energy level as low?|
|Do you eat to feel better?|
|IF YOU ANSWERED WITH …||THEN TRY …|
|0 Yes ? Normal brain serotonin||Keep up the good work!|
|1?2 Yes ? On the verge of low serotonin||Lifestyle suggestions|
|3 Yes ? Mild serotonin deficiency||Tryptophan or 5-HTP*|
|4 Yes ? Moderate serotonin deficiency||Tryptophan or 5-HTP + Saffron extract*|
|5 Yes ? High serotonin deficiency||Tryptophan or 5-HTP + Saffron extract + Hops and/or Pine nut oil*Lifestyle Suggestions|
- Replace sugary snacks with high-protein alternatives. Nuts, seeds, and cheeses are healthy choices.
- If you feel hungry, try drinking water. The water fills your stomach and often can diminish hunger. Chewing gum and brushing your teeth can also help to manage sugar cravings.
- When you feel stressed and want something sweet, take a walk instead. Simply by moving, you can ?de-stress? and eliminate the desire for sugar.
*The appendix provides descriptions and average doses of each nutrient.