The purpose of this site is to collect lab research by medical doctors about herbs that are proven to treat illnesses and counter the false attacks on herbs by the medical industry and false claims by alternative medicine. I let the science tell the facts.
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Dopamine Date Written 2007
Author Joe Holmes Date Revised  

High levels of dopamine may cause hypersexuality. Low levels of dopamine can cause depression, loss of motor control, loss of satisfaction, addictions, cravings, compulsions, poor attention and focus. When dopamine levels are elevated symptoms may manifest in the form of anxiety, paranoia, hypersex or hyperactivity. Dopamine levels are depleted by stress, certain antidepressants, drug use, poor nutrition, and poor sleep. Alcohol, caffeine, and sugar all seem to diminish dopamine activity in the brain. See serotonin for information on how it suppresses hyperxexuality and improves mood. Dopamine and serotonin seem to work in opposite directions causing related mental and hormonal symptoms.

1. "Temporary elevation of dopamine levels often leads to an improvement in mood, alertness, libido, and perhaps even an enhancement in verbal fluency and creativity. However, a dopamine increase can lead to side effects to including the propensity to have an addictive behavior. For instance, there have been a few reports that patients with Parkinson's disease became involved in gambling when the dosage of their dopamine-enhancing medicines was increased. Interestingly, dopamine at times may lead to a sleepy state."..."Dopamine can improve sex drive. Serotonin has the opposite effect to dopamine. While dopamine increases sexuality, serotonin dampens it." (4)

2. "Foods that increase Dopamine Food sources of dopamine increasing tyrosine include almonds, avocados, bananas, dairy products, lima beans, pumpkin seeds, and sesame seeds. Dopamine is easily oxidized. Foods that are rich in antioxidants such as fruits and vegetables may help protect dopamine-using neurons from free radical damage. Many healthcare professionals recommend supplementing with vitamins C, vitamin E, and other antioxidants. Foods such as sugar, saturated fats, cholesterol, and refined foods interfere with proper brain function. Consumption of saturated fats and cholesterol should also be reduced because they can clog the arteries to the brain, heart, and other organs. Caffeine must also be avoided by persons with depression. Caffeine is a stimulant which initially speeds up neurotransmission, raises the amount of serotonin, and elevates mood." (3) (Caffeine may increase hypersexuality for depression subjects)

3. "When the hypothalamus sees that prolactin levels are too high, it manufactures more dopamine, trying to get prolactin levels back to normal. Unfortunately, if the message doesn't get through, the pituitary continues to produce and release prolactin. Meanwhile, the high levels of dopamine in the hypothalamus can block the release of another hormone, GnRH, which is necessary for normal ovarian function." (1)

4. "What is Prolactin? Prolactin is a chemical that is secreted by your pituitary gland. This is the pea-sized gland found in the middle of your brain, which is responsible for triggering many of your body's processes. Prolactin is found in both men and women and is released at various times throughout the day and night."..."Hormones that Affect Prolactin: Like many of your body's other processes, the release of prolactin is actually triggered by other hormones. Hormones affecting prolactin include: * dopamine * serotonin * thyroid-producing hormone. Serotonin and thyroid hormone help to increase prolactin release, whereas dopamine works to block prolactin release."..."Dopamine serves as the major prolactin-inhibiting factor or brake on prolactin secretion. Dopamine is secreted into portal blood by hypothalamic neurons, binds to receptors on lactotrophs, and inhibits both the synthesis and secretion of prolactin. Agents and drugs that interfere with dopamine secretion or receptor binding lead to enhanced secretion of prolactin." (2)

5. "Low dopamine levels can cause depression, loss of motor control, loss of satisfaction, addictions, cravings, compulsions, low sex drive, poor attention and focus. When dopamine levels are elevated symptoms may manifest in the form of anxiety, paranoia, or hyperactivity.
* Do you often feel depressed, flat, bored, and apathetic?
* Are you low on physical or mental energy? Do you feel tired a lot; have to push yourself to exercise?
* Is your drive, enthusiasm, and motivation on the low side?
* Do you have difficulty focusing or concentrating?
* Are you easily chilled? Do you have cold hands or feet?
* Do you tend to put on weight too easily?
* Do you feel the need to get more alert and motivated by consuming a lot of coffee or other "uppers" like sugar, diet soda, ephedra, or cocaine?
If you answered yes to any of the above you could have low dopmine levels. (5)





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