Exercise, Endorphins and Happiness

endorphins_calmStrenuous exercise is one of the ways that body releases endorphin’s. Endorphins are chemicals that reduce pain by interacting with receptors called neurotransmitters in the brain. They produce positive happy feelings in the body (very similar to morphine). When endorphins are released while exercising, they are often called “runners high”…energizing a positive outlook on life.

Let’s face it, anxiety, depression, and stress are real killers and there are obvious benefits derived both emotionally and physically when you have the ability to stay calm and collected.

Endorphins, released by your pituitary gland and nervous system have this power, they can sooth any emotional or physical pain.

There are about 20 different types of endorphins that the body releases depending on the stimulus and it’s highly unlikely that you will ever hear anyone complain about getting an “endorphin high.”

Endorphins could be considered your own private narcotic since they affect us similar to the way that codeine and morphine do only it’s not bad for you nor it is addictive (well, maybe the feeling is a little addictive).

Basically endorphins are chemical neurotransmitters…passing signals from one neuron to the next. They are produced in different parts of your body such as the spinal cord, pituitary gland and other areas of your brain and nervous system. They interact with the cells receptors in the brain responsible for controlling emotion and blocking pain.

Although endorphins block pain, they are also responsible for any feelings of pleasure we are experiencing. They can be released by different triggers. The primary triggers are pain and stress.

The hypothalamus is our command center for the endocrine system. When endorphins are produced it is through the request of the hypothalamus.

There are many ways to release endorphin’s in the body.
Here’s a short list:

Exercise: not surprisingly exercise is on this list. However, you must work to get your ‘runners high”…you must put in the time…pay the piper if you want to get your reward of endorphin’s.

Regular Exercise has been shown to:

Reduce stress levels: physical activity produces happier less anxious people.

Keep anxiety and depression in check: People who are happy are much more resistant to disease while the opposite is true for those with chronic anxiety and stress.

Lifts your spirit and self-esteem: You’ll get a feeling of accomplishment when you rise to meet your exercise goals.

Improve the quality of your sleep: Your body needs to be tired in order to fall asleep…give it a workout and watch the results.

Exercise is responsible for creating new brain cells in the part of our brains responsible for memory and learning.

Meditation and yoga: Controlled breathing exercises have also been shown to release endorphins.

Alcohol: Light or moderate drinking can stimulate endorphins while heavy drinking does not.

Hot spicy foods: Chili peppers contain a substance called Capsaicin. This is responsible for the “burn” you feel when eating chilies. This “burn also triggers the release of fire quenching endorphin’s.

Body Therapy: Message and acupuncture have both been proven to trigger endorphin’s

So, if you’re ready to “get a real high”…(the kind of high that’s actually good for you) and release the “feel-good” happy chemicals in your body it’s time to hit the gym or at least get going at home on your favorite exercise routine.

Don’t waste another day thinking about being happy…be proactive and do something about it.

If you are looking for a workable solution to the vicious cycle of “rebound weight” I can help. “Rebound Free Weight Loss” explains in simple and easy to understand steps the process you need to take to get educated, re-frame your mind, take action and complete your own transformation.

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