The Happy Hormone
The human body and its mechanisms are subjects of great inquisitiveness. The mysteries of our internal system have fascinated scientists from time immemorial. One such substance in the human body that makes you dance to its tunes is the Hormone. They help aid in proper functioning of your organs, they regulate your metabolism, they help you alleviate pain, they make you tall, make you fat, make you thin, make you happy and also make you sad.
About 50 known hormones are present in our body and researchers are still adding to the number. Today let’s focus on the brighter side of life. The happier side of the hormone. Yes! There are indeed a few hormones that can tickle you. Make you happy…. really happy from within.
Endorphins: Endorphins are natural chemicals produced in the body to reduce pain and boost happiness. Basically, when we feel good, we focus better and in turn, learn more. For the last five years, neuroscientists have been encouraging parents and teachers to work on stimulating the endorphins.
Dopamine: Dopamine, also known as the “feel-good” hormone, is associated with the brain's reward system and produces pleasant sensations. It puts you on cloud nine. Dopamine makes you feel satisfied, feel light, feel special and feel accomplished.
Serotonin: This hormone and neurotransmitter help regulate your mood as well as your sleep, appetite, digestion, learning ability, and memory. Spending time outdoors, in sunlight, is a great way to do this. According to research, exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun can increase the production of serotonin. Foods rich in tryptophan can help increase serotonin. (Milk, Oats, Eggs, Nuts and seeds. Turkey and other poultry. Soy foods, Cheese and Seaweed)
A few ways you could increase these hormones in your body
Various sports/activity: jogging, swimming, dancing.
Creative art: journaling, colouring, cooking.
Musical: playing an instrument, listening to favourite songs.
Social interactions: chatting with a friend, laughing out loud, eating a meal together.
A me time that’s Quiet: reading a book or a magazine, assembling a puzzle.
Hugging your children/family members/dear ones
Cuddling and playing with pets
Walking on lush green grass with a kiss of sunlight
If you’ve heard of a “runner’s high,” you might already know about the link between exercise and endorphin release.
But exercise doesn’t just work on endorphins. Regular physical activity can also increase your dopamine and serotonin levels, making it a great option to boost your happy hormones.
Reminiscing about happy memories
Appreciation is a major booster.
Surrounding your home/work place with green colour causes a deep bonding with nature, in turn making you feel good.
Brain bytes: When dopamine is
released in our brain, we feel a sense
of temporary pleasure. Serotonin
creates a long-lasting feeling of
happiness or well-being. Both
chemicals act as hormones that help
coordinate different functions and
processes in our bodies like growth,
metabolism, emotions and even
sleep! Serotonin also puts a brake on
the excitement and recklessness that
dopamine can produce. When the
overall chemical system is working
well, these hormones interact to
balance out extreme behaviours.
A few tips and tricks to boost hormones, to help your children focus better.
❖Do a physical activity before homework. Toss a ball around. Ride bikes to and from school. Play hide and seek or tag. Any type of physical activity that makes your kids out of breath, increases their heart rate, and makes them sweat a bit, will work!
❖ Make it a fun! Instead of counting out reps by numbers, we often count by colours, fruits, or even types of candy, counting with names of animals, birds, insects, moths, states: Even better – have your kids come up with what to count with.
❖ Have a dance off! Nearly every child knows those crazy Fortnite dances and graceful fairy tale moves. See who can out dance each other!
Hormones - How does it help children in their development?
- Promotes learning and memory
- Essential for motor skills and cognitive functioning
- Promotes positive feelings and pro-social behaviour
- Helps regulate appetite
- Helps good sleep (by helping regulating circadian rhythms)
- Regulates blood pressure, heart rate, and the digestion system.
Low levels might cause:
- Irritability, anxiousness, feelings of depression
- Sleep issues or fatigue
- Nausea and digestive issues
- Cravings for sweet or carbohydrate-rich foods
- Decreased appetite
Balancing these hormones is essentially important for smooth functioning of your body and mind. In a child it becomes extremely crucial to keep theses hormones completely balanced so as to aid in promoting growth, maintaining health, and stimulating a happier childhood.