Understanding your brain’s reward neurotransmitters

Despite modern science making many incredible inroads into gaining a greater understanding of the human condition, it’s still what goes on inside our brains that holds the greatest mysteries.

But there have recently been some real breakthroughs in neuroscience that have given us a much clearer picture over how our brain’s reward neurotransmitters can govern our behaviours in a variety of environments, whether it’s eating a particularly satisfying meal or even just playing online casino games.

It’s been found that our brains are prewired with a complex reward system in place that releases dopamine in accordance to a variety of stimulating activities. This is important because dopamine can boost motivation, combat fatigue and help us live a more productive life.

But what’s particularly illuminating is what can trigger these dopamine-releasing neurotransmitters. Although initial studies in the 1950s focused on how electrical charges could stimulate dopamine in rat’s brains, thankfully things have moved on to the point where we’re realising how a range of different activities can provide us with those all-important feelings of pleasure.

Certain surprising foods and drinks have proven dopamine producing effects, with superfoods like avocados and almonds joining the obvious likes of chocolate and coffee in being able to give us that feelgood factor.

And whilst there’s evidence that people who are naturally low in dopamine often resort to the abuse of caffeine, alcohol and sugar in order to feel focused, the recent blog post at the Lucky Nugget Casino site found that by studying mathematical models of the brain’s activity, scientists were able to see that playing online games had a similar effect to euphoria-inducing drugs.

This has proven interesting as it shows that online casino games are just some of the natural ways that we can individually boost our dopamine levels. Other activities include physical exercise which can also stimulate the neurotransmitter that produces serotonin that is important for governing our moods and regulating our sleep patterns.

And it’s not just high impact physical exercise like jogging that can improve our moods, as even yoga and meditation can boost serotonin levels in a way that can not only help us relax, but also increase our creativity and our ability to learn.

So although we are still only just beginning to understand the complexities of the human brain, it seems that good food, online games and a bit of physical exercise are simple and fun ways to help us feel better and live healthier lives.