The sun is shining today. In a winter world of typically grey skies an abundance of sunshine will change my mood and my day.
My productivity increases whenever there are sunny skies. My mood changes for the better. The sunshine gives me an endorphin rush.
Taking advantage of the sunshine and going outside with my dog, Benson, always increase my endorphins.
What is an endorphin, and how does it work?
Endorphins are the body’s natural feel-good chemical. They are neurotransmitters produced by the pituitary gland and stimulate feelings of pleasure, well-being, and pain relief.
You may have heard of runner’s high. Endorphins can be created through vigorous exercise and can cause a positive mood shift. They can also be produced through other activities that do not require physical activity.
So far today I have had my endorphins increased by three things.
First was the sunshine radiating everywhere and easily seen through my windows.
Second was taking Benson for a walk to enjoy the additional exercise and the sunshine.
Third was exercising on the treadmill for a half-hour.
I have just added a fourth by eating a yummy piece of dark chocolate. No exercise required there and it was so good. It has been proven that eating dark chocolate has mood-boosting and inflammation-reducing benefits. I am totally into doing that.
Another food you can eat to induce endorphin production is chili peppers. They contain a chemical called capsaicin which causes a pain relieving feel good response in your body. If you like hot spicy food enjoy because the hotter the pepper the better the response will be.
While researching I found an article that said combining dark chocolate and hot peppers you will get a double dose of endorphines.
I am including some recipes for you to try.
I have not tried either of these recipes but I am really tempted to try them, especially the NYTimes recipe. It sounds so good.
Another feel good endorphin producing liquid is red wine. Both white and red wine contain antioxidants but red wine has the added benefit of resveratrol which has been shown to reduce inflammation, slow the aging process, and protect against arterial damage.
I have included a Oct. 22, 2019 article from the May Clinic about Resveratrol and red wine in case you would like more information.
Here is a good source of endorphins and so much fun. We should all strive to do more of this. Laughter. I love hearing the sound of someone laughing and seeing the joy on their face.
How often do you laugh? Laughter with friends also produces endorphins. Laughing lifts our mood and makes us feel better.
Researchers from Finland and the United Kingdom found that social laughter triggers the release of endorphins – often referred to as “feel good hormones” – in brain regions responsible for arousal and emotion. Here is a link to that article:
A practice I would like to try is meditation. I have never been able to make this part of my schedule, but I know the benefits are so worthwhile.
Meditation not only releases endorphins it also helps increase dopamine, serotonin and melatonin which produce a calm, happy, and content feeling.
What’s not to like about those feelings? I have to give it a try.
So these are my tips for changing your mood and feeling better which will help you be more productive. When you feel good everything is easier.
“Today, give a stranger one of your smiles. It might be the only sunshine he sees all day.”H. Jackson Brown Jr.
As always, thanks so much for visiting my blog. I hope the sun is shining today for you.