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Hormones and Love: Natural Ways To Increase Hormones Involved In Libido & Falling in love

Dr Tasreen Alibhai, ND

How to increase the hormones in your body that mimic love and desire, Naturally

With valentines day around the corner, love is on our minds. But for so many people the feeling of love, that excitement, the libido has fizzled. With a busy lifestyle, kids, stress, maybe certain medications you are on, even just being a long term relationship can fizzle out excitement and desire.

Luckily psychologists have been able to identify hormones and key chemicals in your brain that can lead to feelings of attraction, intimacy, bonding and desire. And there are great natural medicines that can boost these hormones and brain chemicals.

When you first fall in love you feel feelings of excitement, giddiness, happiness and attraction. Scientists have been able to identify key players in your body’s biochemistry that leads to attraction and eventually love.

These brain neurotransmitters all powerfully affect our mood, our desire for intimacy, our perception of our mate,

Psychologists have shown it takes between 90 sec and 4 minutes to decide if you are attracted to someone.

*The information presented is for educational purposes only. Increasing Brain Neurotransmittor levels can have serious negative side effects on people taking certain medications such as antidepressants or people who have high blood pressure. Please consult with your Medical Doctor or Naturopathic Doctor before starting any new supplement program. *

3 stage of Love:

  1. Lust

    This is the first stage of love driven by Estrogen and Testosterone. These hormones are very important in the initial attraction and in libido. Testosterone is one of the most important hormones in libido and sexual desire in both men and women. There are great ways to increase Testosterone naturally. These include:

    1. Eat a diet high in good fats such as fish, olive oil, avocados. Be sure at least 20-30% of your daily calories comes from good fats. Your body needs good fats to make hormones.

    2. Strength training exercise will increase Testosterone levels in both men and women. Testosterone levels start to decline after age 20 in men and after menopause in women.

    3. Vitamin D as a supplement. I recommend between 2000-4000IU per day

    4. Zinc citrate (50-100mg per day) will increase Testosterone. Be sure to also supplement with copper as taking a zinc supplement can lower copper levels in the body.

    5. Avoid Sugar which wreaks havoc on all our hormones.

    6. Lower body fat if your body fat percentage is high. Fat cells contain an enzyme called aromatase that converts Testosterone to Estrogen. So high body fat percentage can result in lowered Testosterone and high Estrogen in both men and women.

    7. Get at least 7-8 hours of sleep per night. Sleep deprivation can lower Testosterone by as much as 10-15%, like aging 10-15 years. And Testosterone is just not important for libido. It is also important for energy, stamina, motivation. So get enough sleep!

    8. Reduce stress. Cortisol is released from the adrenal glands when you are under stress. Cortisol lowers the production of Testosterone. Stress management will lower cortisol and restore Testosterone production. You can also add a Magnesium supplement during the day or at bedtime to reduce stress and calm your mind.

    If you are a woman in menopause and are experiencing a low libido, you may want to consider Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy to increase Estrogen in your body and help your libido. The Naturopathic Doctors at Vitalia Health Care are licensed to prescribe Natural HRT. Please give us a call to discuss your natural hormone replacement options. 604-566-9355

  2. Attraction

    This is the 2nd stage. This is also called the Love-Struck phase. You can’t get that person out of your mind, you lose your appetite, need less sleep, spend hours daydreaming.

    This stage involves Phenyltheylamine, Dopamine and Serotonin

    If you miss that love struck phase, support these brain neurotransmitters and start feeling the butterflies again!

    • Phenylethylamine (PEA)

      is released when you first start falling in love. It makes your heart pound, your palms sweaty and sexually excites you. It makes you feel like you are on Cloud 9! This is the way your body responds when Phenylethylamine is released in your brain. It is nicknamed the “molecule of Love” .

      Natural ways to increase Phenylethylamine:

      • What better way than to eat chocolate! High in PEA, women who eat chocolate report a better sex life and sexual satisfaction than women who don’t. Go ahead and eat your chocolate!!!
      • Phenylalanine is the precursor to PEA. It is found in protein rich foods such as meat, eggs, dairy, nuts and seeds.
      • You can also take a supplement of Phenylalanine. Recommend dosage is 500mg/day.
      *Do not take Phenylalanine if you are taking MAO inhibitors or Tricyclic antidepressants or if you have high Blood pressure. Large amounts are not safe as it increases Adrenaline in your body. *
    • Dopamine:

      This is the addictive or craving hormone. When it is released, you experience an intense rush of pleasure, similar to cocaine or heroin use. You want it over and over. This is released when you see that special person and are in love struck phase.

      After a while (about 2 years) in a long term relationship you don’t get the same release of dopamine in the brain. The addiction and excitement fades L Dopamine is your reward chemical. To feel that excitement it is important to support dopamine production!

      Natural ways to increase Dopamine:

      1. Sex. When we have an orgasm, a lot of dopamine is released in our brain. This is the “high” of orgasm. Its addictive. We want more. Having sex increases dopamine which helps us achieve that love struck feeling, wanting more from our partner. Sex stimulates us to crave more sex.

      Unfortunately, after a while, the dopamine surge you get after sex diminishes with the same partner. So other ways to increase the production of dopamine include:

      • L-Tyrosine is the amino acid precursor to Dopamine. Supplementing with L-Tyrosine (500mg/day) can help to increase Dopamine levels. Foods high in Tyrosine include nuts and seeds, bananas, fish, turkey and dairy products. Avoid sugar, fried foods, coffee, soda, alcohol as they all lower dopamine.
      • Magnesium Citrate or Glycinate has been found to beneficial in increasing Dopamine levels.
      • Vitamin B6 will also help to increase Dopamine levels.
    • Serotonin:

      This keeps your new love in your mind, makes you daydream about them. It is one of loves most important neurotransmittors. It elevates your mood and makes you feel giddy about your loved one. When serotonin levels are low, you feel depressed.

      Natural ways to increase Serotonin:

      1. A diet high in Tryptophan (the precursor to Serotonin) is one of the best ways to increase Serotonin in the brain. Foods high in Tryptophan include milk, yogurt, nuts, fish and cheese. Whey protein is also an excellent source of Tryptophan.>
      2. 5HTP is the precursor to Serotonin and can be taken as a supplement. Dosage 5-50mg/day
        *Do not take 5HTP if you are taking antidepressants drugs known as SSRI’s or MAO inhibitors*
      3. Daydreaming will increase serotonin
  3. Attachment

    Involves Oxytocin , the cuddle hormone

    It is released during orgasm. It deepens the feeling of attachment. The more sex you have with your partner, the deeper your bond becomes. It is also released during childbirth, in women breastfeeding and during orgasm.

    Natural ways to increase Oxytocin:

    1. Have sex. Include more foreplay. Hugging and touching your partner will spike oxytocin levels 200%. This increases bonding and feeling connected to your partner. Oxytocin is higher in women when they ovulate, making women more prone to touch and displaying affection during ovulation.

    2. Daydream about your significant other. A study out of the University of North Carolina found married women release a dose of oxytocin when they daydream about their husbands. This quickly results in a feeling of connection and strengthens the bond between partners.

    3. Kissing is one of the best ways to increase oxytocin!

    A loss or decline in sex drive, connection with your partner and excitement in love can have many different causes. Brain biochemistry and Hormones play a role. The Naturopathic Doctors at Vitalia Health Care can investigate your body’s biochemistry and develop an effective treatment strategy for you. Call us today at 604-566-9355 to book your appointment. Let us help you feel connected with your partner again!

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