Vitamin D Plus Omega-3s May Boost Serotonin Levels
A recent study suggests that taking vitamin D and omega-3s supplements together may help cognitive function and social behavior, especially in people who have ADHD, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder.
Working with the knowledge that low serotonin levels exacerbate the conditions listed above, the researchers examined how vitamin D and omega-3s may affect them. They found that serotonin synthesis, release, and function in the brain are all modulated by vitamin D and EPA and DPA omega-3s, the two fatty acids that come from marine life.
They also noted that 70% of adults and 67% of children between the ages of one and eleven are vitamin D deficient, even when you take fortification and supplementation into account.
The researchers suggest that more studies should be done to determine optimal levels of vitamin D and omega-3s to help with these cognitive and behavioral disorders. They also believe that they may be a potential a side effect-free alternative to serotonin-boosting prescription medications.
Researchers from the Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Institute conducted the study. It was published online ahead of print on February 24, 2015, in The FASEB Journal.
DHA and EPA are the two omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil. Omega-3s have been linked to a number of health benefits, including improved joint mobility, helping with age related macular degeneration, better moods, and aiding your immune system.
Because omega-3 fatty-acids are not found naturally in the human body, it is especially important to make sure that they are a part of your daily diet. Oily, dark fish such as tuna and salmon are high in omega-3s. If you don’t like fish, consider taking a daily high quality non-fish supplement that has been tested for purity and potency.
Previous studies have associated vitamin D with reducing the risk of skin damage, reducing the risk of osteoporosis, combating diabetes, and improving age related macular degeneration.
Vitamin D can be found in milk, fortified cereals, fish, and eggs. Your body also processes vitamin D from the sun but it becomes harder for our bodies to process it as we age. A high quality vitamin D supplement is always a good option if you feel that you’re not getting enough through diet and sun.