Dopamine Is My Savior
I have discovered something that I really want to share with all of you. As most of you know, I am a bit analytical and I always want to know the why. So recently, I have been frustrated by several things in my life. One was poor libido and overall blah sex. It was like things didn't FEEL the same and I couldn't get my head in the game! Also, I was more moody and overall less excited by everything in life. One odd thing to add to it, was just feeling tight and uncomfortable all the time. It was like I was stuck in someone else's tight body. I started to blame hormones. Why not? As women we tend to blame them, and often it is part or all the the issue. But, the results of my hormone panel wasn't anything remarkable, except for low testosterone (always has been). My Vit D was a bit low so maybe that was part of it. Well, I can tell you that supplementing Vit D and DHEA for testosterone didn't help AT ALL!
I started doing some research and I came across something that I couldn't believe that I hadn't figured out before. Years ago, I struggled more with anxiety and was prescribed a variety of anti-depressants (SSRI's- increase serotonin and decrease dopamine) that never helped at all. Then I tried Wellbutrin. It was the only one that worked. It boosted my libido to the max, sex was amazing and I was super happy. The downside was, it made me more anxious and I only slept a few hours a night. So of course I stopped it. Here is the interesting part. When I was researching Wellburin, I found out that it is not an SSRI, it increases dopamine not serotonin. In general most people are prescribed SSRI anti-depressants, which are known to smother libido. Which makes sense considering dopamine is the highest right before orgasm and is crucial for arousal.
At this point, I decided I needed to research the possible supplements that could safely raise my dopamine level. There are several, but I chose L-Tyrosine, which is an amino acid. Here is the science behind that. When you ingest L-Tyrosine from protein or a supplement, it is turned into L-Dopa and then dopamine. Some is then turned further into norepinephrine or epinephrine. What the heck are those? Well, they are all neurotransmitters that are responsible for fight or flight and feelings of general well-being. They are basically stimulants. Those seeking a stimulant high may seek meth or cocaine to get a super boost in dopamine and a feeling of euphoria. Dopamine also relaxes muscles and is prescribed to those with Parkinson's tremors.
All pretty interesting right? Don't we all want to have a bit more of that? Not necessarily. Too much dopamine, epinephrine and norepinephrine can cause high blood pressure. Interestingly, beta blockers block epinephrine, so if you are on beta blockers or have high blood pressure, this probably isn't for you.
So here is my story on how I dosed and how it worked. L-Tyrosine has an immediate effect. The dosing called for taking 500 mg. Wait 30 minutes. If I felt nothing significant, take another 500 mg and wait 30 minutes. I did feel something the first 30 minutes. Kind of a medicated high type feeling, but I went ahead and took another 500 mg. I had the option of taking a final dose, but I chose not to. Then I could take that dosage up to 3 times per day! I am now taking 1000mg in the morning and at noon. I have only been doing this for 4 days. I cannot believe all the things that are changing. Let's just say, that the sex issue is no longer an issue. I don't feel moody at all and I just feel really happy. Just sitting here typing, I feel really joyful. My tightness is gone and I have noticed a huge difference in my performance at crossfit. It is like my muscles don't get fatigued and crampy anymore.
I am so amazed that I wanted to be very personal and share this with all of you. If you know something isn't right in how you feel, don't give up. I started to think that I was a bit crazy with all the strange things going on and nothing seemed to help. It might have taken some research on my part, but it all makes so much sense. Life can be hard and stressful, but don't ever underestimate the affect of your brain chemistry and hormones on your ability to control stress and have pleasure in your life. I hope this helps.
As a disclaimer, I recommend speaking with your doctor before starting any supplements.
Anything and everything health and wellness.