The emotions and feelings are very important part of the life of anyone, but what is a feeling? What mechanisms activate the brain to perceive love, hate, joy, sadness, fear? Many times what we are feeling may be being caused by a great series of combinations between our neurons and the neurotransmitters that somehow control our life.
According to experts, an emotion is a physiological function that triggers a series of responses in the body. To begin with, the vagus nerve is stimulated, the adrenal glands release hormones such as adrenaline or others, the brain produces this response, collects it again and elaborates it; In other words, there is a back and forth mechanism, when the brain becomes aware of the effect of an emotion on the body, it has a feeling.
They are substances that intervene in brain processes, such as thoughts, attitudes, actions, decisions, motivations, emotions, feelings. Communication between neurons occurs through the synapse. The neurotransmitters are responsible for carrying messages to the various parts of the central nervous system and one of them is the brain.
Some important neurotransmitters are:
- Acetylcholine: Responsible for regulating the ability to retain, store and retrieve information at the right time.
- Norepinephrine: In charge of learning, attention, sociability, emotions and sexual desire. When your levels are low you feel lack of motivation, depression, loss of libido and isolation.
- Serotonin: Allows you to sleep well. The brain uses it to make a hormone called melatonin.
- GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid): helps to memorize, regulate nerve signals and promote relaxation. If the levels are incorrect, the symptoms are fatigue and anxiety.
- Adrenaline: Allows you to react to danger or stress. At very high levels it causes fatigue, insomnia, anxiety and depression.
The hormones that control your feelings
On the other hand, the human body is capable of producing a series of hormones, essential for its proper functioning, three of these hormones are linked to the sensation of feelings and emotions, they are known as the hormones of happiness.
The body produces about 20 different types of endorphins, stored mainly in the hypothalamus. Endorphins play an important role in recovery and have essential health functions:
- They promote calm and generate a state of well-being.
- They improve the mood, generate enthusiasm and joy.
- They reduce pain.
- They delay aging and lower blood pressure.
- They help improve the functioning of the immune system.
- They counteract adrenaline levels.
There are things or activities that naturally increase endorphin levels among these: eating chocolate, getting massages, sunbathing, meditation, yoga, listening to music, dancing, singing, painting, running, biking, swimming, etc.
Known as the pleasure hormone, in addition to being the hormone of humor, Serotonin (5-HT), is a monoamine neurotransmitter synthesized in the central nervous system and in the gastrointestinal tract, also present in various plants, vegetables and fruits. This neurohormone generates happiness, helps cure depression and psychosis, inhibits anger, aggression, regulates body temperature, pressure and mood, influences sexuality and appetite.
In orgasm, the hypothalamus releases oxytocin through the pituitary gland, which increases serotonin levels in the brain, causing a state of pleasure, satiety and tranquility.
Like serotonin is a neurohormone released by the hypothalamus, it promotes increased heart rate and blood pressure. Among the functions it performs in the brain are: it influences behavior, cognition, motor activity, motivation and reward. It also helps regulate milk production, sleep, attention, humor and learning.