15 Mood Enhancing Life Hacks

15 Mood Enhancing Life Hacks

Sometimes you may feel like you are running on auto-pilot. Sludging through each day unaware of your growing short temper and foul mood. Once you recognize that your disposition has been compromised these 15 mood enhancing life hacks just might help.

Don’t let life bring you down when it has so much to offer that can make you smile. It may sound silly but making an effort to lift your mood and pull yourself out of those doldrums could reflect some good stuff right back on to you.

The Biology of It

There are several neurotransmitters that are turned on and off when it comes to mood control. The hypothalamus in your brain is a major player in how these neurotransmitters are distributed. If you are only releasing minimal amounts of what some call “feel good hormones” then your mood and life-lens can become negatively compromised. For some this can snowball into more serious manifestations such as depression and anxiety.

These are the hormones and what they do.

  • Dopamine – Responds in your pleasure center. When you do something pleasurable dopamine production increases leaving you to feel positive, creative and sometimes even more loving. Be careful however, unhealthy habits such as alcohol, drugs, gambling and sex (which are major dopamine enhancers) could become addictive.
  • Serotonin – Mostly produced in your gut, serotonin is responsible for regulating mood, sleep, appetite, digestion, learning ability, and memory. Many foods have been linked to increasing serotonin production.
  • Oxytocin – This powerful hormone is abundant when you are attracted to someone or even something such as a passionate skill. This is why some call it the “love hormone”. Oxytocin plays a role in bonding with offspring. Production increases with physical connections and properties in oxytocin could reduce pain signals.
  • Endorphins – A major analgesic hormone that is released to heighten awareness while reducing pain and stress. Levels increase during exercise such as running as well as having sex.

Get that Omega-3 Smile

Sometimes lifting your mood simply takes an easy dietary fix to get you there.

Eating clean fatty fish (not fried or battered) gives a good boost of omega-3 fatty acids which have been linked to relieving depression.

Research out of the Department of Psychology, Tufts University, Medford, Massachusetts, USA, stated that,

Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid (n-3 PUFA) supplementation may reduce symptoms of major depressive disorder and perinatal depression.”

Fatty fish most abundant in omega-3 include:

  • Mackerel
  • Black cod aka Sable fish
  • Salmon
  • Herring
  • Anchovies
  • Sardines

Good vegetarian sources of omega-3 are: 

  • Flaxseeds
  • Hemp seeds
  • Chia seeds
  • Walnuts
  • Brussel sprouts
  • Algal oil
  • Perilla oil

Venture Forth

Simply going outside is one of the easiest mood enhancing life hacks. Being in natural sunlight encourages vitamin D production. Vitamin D is linked to increasing mood. Also, being outside naturally raises serotonin levels and if you are doing physical activity endorphin production as well.

A study published in Medical Science Sports Exercise stated that,

“We conclude that regular exercise training and higher aerobic fitness may induce neuroadaptation within the MOR [μ-opioid receptors aka endorphin group] system, which might contribute to improved emotional and behavioral responses associated with long-term exercise.”

So get outside and get moving to enhance your daily mood.

Food & Supplemental Help

A good mood enhancing go-to is plant-based food packed with all sorts of mood boosting properties. These are some recommendations for that fast fix to jolt up your feel good hormones.

  • Green tea and green tea extract (dopamine and serotonin)
  • Tryptophan – Chicken, eggs, cheese, peanuts, tofu, pumpkin and seaame seeds (serotonin)
  • Tyrosine – Same foods as tryptophan (dopamine production)
  • B6 – Bananas (help produce dopamine and serotonin)

You can also try taking a vitamin, mineral, herbal or other natural supplement for health. Many have been mentioned as being obtained from food but if you can’t keep an optimal diet all the time an adjunct could help. Trying different supplemental applications for a mood enhancing life hack may be the best way to go.

Here are a few to consider:

  • Probiotics (serotonin and dopamine production)
  • Omega-3
  • Vitamin D
  • Theanine
  • Ashwagandha
  • Gingko Biloba
  • Curcumin (turmeric)
  • Valerian root
  • Ginseng

These 15 mood enhancing life hacks are easy ways to get you back on track. If you need to turn that frown upside down then give one or more a try.