Summertime is typically when people's mood is the best. There's sun, warmth, fresh fruits & veggies, vacations & lots of playtime, but what if your mood is still low? Many people believe that mood is only impacted by serotonin levels in the brain, this is not the complete picture.
The chemical balance of your entire body, including your gut, thyroid, and immune system, affects your mood since they are all connected to your brain. Nutrients and hormones play a crucial role in maintaining this balance.
This list is not comprehensive, but as examples, we explore these 5 underlying reasons for mood problems when using functional medicine methods:
1. Hormonal Changes
Mood can be caused by low thyroid hormone, as well as by estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone fluctuations. In order to determine the cause of mood issues, testing is necessary.
2. Chronic Inflammation
Research has shown that mood issues can be caused by inflammatory cytokines, even if the inflammation originates from outside the brain. The cytokines are believed to enter the brain by penetrating the blood brain barrier.
3. Poor Gut Health
Are you aware that the microbes living in your gut create numerous neurochemicals, which include 95% of the body's serotonin? These neurochemicals can affect your digestion and mood via the gut-brain axis.
4. Disrupted Stress Response
Our bodies produce cortisol, a hormone that can be affected by chronic stress and can impact our mood. By testing the level of cortisol in our saliva, we can monitor its cycle throughout the day.
5. Suboptimal Nutrition
Neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine are synthesized from amino acids found in protein. The enzymes involved in their production rely on specific vitamins and minerals such as magnesium and vitamin B6.
These don't seem related to mood do they?? I've seen this happen in the clinic repeatedly. Take a whole-person approach to health, and everything is interconnected. Whole person health is the best method for achieving long-lasting results.
If you or someone you know is having mood-related issues, please know that help is available! Our clinic is currently accepting new patients, and beginning treatment is just one phone call away.