need some help here please, how to boost serotonin in depression I think my sister is lacking b's b12 vit d and lord knows what she is always irritable and cross and blows up into a rage I wonder if she really knows how often it happens, but do know she is depressed due to life ciucumstances she takes loads of big pharm crap, as she hasvarious things that are not right, water tablets, asthma inhalers, statiins I think, and more, big pharm meds because that is what she is used to, she is a total nervous wreck,, but looking at the item above, it seems that serotonin foods don't work, big pharm not good and the site doesn't seem to be helpful, any ideas please woul dbe gratefully recieved.

24 Replies

  • Hi there. This may or may not be a help for you but it's my own experience. I was tested for serotonin during a particularly stressful period. My reading was so incredibly low (don't have the results on me right now) that the warning on the labs were outlined: Patient ha severe clinical depression. Luckily my Endo isn't a number cruncher, and he's very open minded. He told me that serotonin levels really don't matter, what matters is how the patient feels. I wasn't in anyway suicidal, or even over-depressed or anything unusual, I felt fine actually just stressed.

    Well the Endo told me to throw this result out the window and ignore it, he said I shouldn't take any drugs for it. He explained that stress, and general attitude have a big role to play in serotonin levels, and he recommended that I work on relaxing in life, and exercise more, and take time to do things I enjoy. Basically that I would increase my "serotonin levels" by making life changes rather than taking pills or supplements. He also told me that some people have low serotonin and are fine, while others have high serotonin and are depressed and unhappy.

    Well it worked. He was right, I feel much better, I sleep better, I eat better. And I don't care to ever get my serotonin tested again because I know I'm not depressed.

    There could be a million reasons that your sister is experiencing her issues. And you could very well be right that it has to do with what she lacks or what she's taking. But don't downplay the role of relaxation and stress management, every good doc I've ever seen tells me that's a much more important piece of the picture, and one that most patients ignore, and instead go down a road of gobbling up every supplement or pill that may (or most likely may not) help.

    I wish you the best of luck with it. And hopefully another member can reply to your question more specifically. All the best to you and your sister!


  • I don't want to hijack this posting, but have to comment about what the doctor said about serotonin. Based on studies high serotonin can cause social anxiety disorder and they do not know how ssri drugs even work. Some researcher says it indeed high serotonin causing issues and ssri works only for those who has it high as it somehow actually down regulates the amount of serotonin or inhibits it.

    So. They obviously don't know sh** lol. If they are not absolutely sure is it high or low serotonin causing problems and whether the med decrease or increase it , best to listen to doctors like yours. He sounds like a doctor who is able to think and rationalise things.

    And what do we know about one off test results. You had one low reading which only tells you had one low reading. I assume there are several reasons that could cause it.

    I just had to comment :)

  • You didn't hijack at all, your comment is well placed. I agree with you, I was actually freaking out about that result, ready to start looking into anti-depressants, I'm so thankful my doctor had a good head on his shoulders.

    Thanks for the reply!

  • Anything specific that you did, just curious, my stress levels are through the roof over things that shouldn't matter, I'm bad tempered , I suspect I'm under medicated thyroid wise but I still shouldn't react like I do! Tips! Suggestions for us stress pots 🤔🙈

  • Well the one thing that helped me is to realize that stress comes in many forms, my problem was overloading myself with work to the point where my brain would shut down from trying to handle so many tasks. So I force myself to take breaks where I "step away" from my social responsibilities and relax for a few minutes, then back to work. My naturopath also gave me some breathing exercises to do, I have to admit I forget to do them most times but they do help. And I'm also now looking into starting yoga, which I scoffed at my whole life, it figures hehe.

  • ndobins at least you recognise your bad temper my sister doesn't she alsways says I am picking on her and blaming her its one thing recognising it and one not ,so well done you.

  • Oh yes! Sick of saying sorry to husband and daughter for ranting! And breath !!!

  • Bluepetals, I would start by getting yr sister to take vit D supps through the winter.. to test her levels if poss, but the chances are she is low, and she's getting none other than through diet currently.

  • yes you are right she is low and trying to get her to take more is a nightmare because the doctor hasn't said so make sme so bloody cross but I have printed off some stuff now about vit d thanks aspama

  • dan that is a really helpful post, I totally agree with all that- her problem is she has lived a closed off lonely life and realised now she is elderly that her life has gone by , not done anything, not had what most people have , no kids, nicehouse etc and living in th epast makes it all worse, but thankyou so much I will try to get her out abit more. glad you are better.

  • You're very welcome!

  • bluepettals2 I hope you are rewarded with better health yourself for being such a lovely sister.

  • thanks j bee, I do try and she is a lovelysister but cantshow emotion and worries about everyone


    Haven't read it all - but wondered about her diet ? :-)

  • thanks marz, well they don't eat junk but then they ADD junk if you know what I mean, sausage rolls maybe lunch or white roll, ham, she does cook meat and veg, but had a very very stressful miserable life

  • If you are sure it is lack of serotonin, 5-HTP. But it might not be and then raising serotonin will make her worse. Better to get the other things right first and, if you can get her to listen to a meditation CD or even take up meditation, it would probably help a lot (search the web for The Meditation Trust - what they teach is much easier than Mindfulness and one of their teachers, Colin, is based in Kent).

  • and she goe sto yoga- I said what theF888k do they teach you yoga should be calming you down! I am notsure its serotonin I just assume dit must be as she is so miserable stressed and depressed thingis sh ecant change her life now and go back 50 years!

  • ....doing yoga should help with being in the moment .....and listening to her body. It does take time and often people give up before they notice the benefits.

  • well it should martz but by the time she get s home she is back to being angry I do not think she is in tune with herself at all.

  • Yoga is often taught as a physical exercise, not a mental one. Also need to do some pranayama (yoga breathing) which her class may or may not do. Some how you have to understand that we can only change the future, not the past.

  • yes I am always saying that angel I t doesn't register!

  • You can't tell people what to think; they just have to come to it themselves. They just see it as a lecture and react the opposite way. Best just to shut up. Could you do a meditation course and ask her to come with you? Payment is on a sliding scale with Meditation Trust so it's much cheaper if you have a low income (and you get free refresher sessions for life).

  • yes angel iam thinking about or back to tai chi

  • Statins do nothing for women (and arguably do nothing for men either). And cholesterol isn't a bad thing, its a good thing. Women with higher levels of cholesterol usually live longer than women with low levels, and are less likely to develop memory problems and dementia.

    Severe irritability has been associated with statin use :


    Another possibility is gluten affecting the brain. I gave up gluten and discovered it was the cause of my major temper problems and irritability. I only realised this when the problem went away.

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