For me, the best approach to anything, is to keep it simple! In this regard, the moment I awake in the morning I place my attention on stimulating dopamine, seratonin, oxytocin and endorphin production … naturally. I don’t need to think about recovering my health or even returning my body to homeostasis, I just need to focus on the thoughts and activities that will initiate the release of the feel-good neurotransmitters and hormones.
It is particularly important for me to do this before I take my morning dose of Sinemet. I want to encourage my body to create its own dopamine while minimizing its dependency on Sinemet.
So each morning, as soon as I get up, I repeat mantras, express gratitude, meditate, practice qigong and perform speed exercises. I also go outside and shovel snow or take a short walk around the forest.
Throughout the day I complete the various elements of my daily regimen, particularly during Sinemet “off-times”, again, to stimulate the natural production of dopamine and serotonin.
At bedtime, I don’t need to focus on dopamine production because the body automatically shuts down the fight-flight response in order to rest. In so doing it stops producing adrenalin and cortisol, and begins releasing melatonin. Having said that, the last thing I do before climbing into bed, is practice qigong.
A recent study conducted by researchers in Korea found evidence pointing to what many of us experiencing the symptoms of PD already know, which is that dopamine producing neurons in the substantia nigra, do not die, but rather, become dormant due to inactivity [because the body is in a chronic state of fight-flight]. This is why it is so essential that we do all the things we can to stimulate the natural production of dopamine and serotonin, in order to wake up these neurons.
If you have any questions about the neuroplasticity of the brain or its ability to heal itself, I urge you to read, You Are the Placebo, by Joe Dispenza, and The Brain’s Way of Healing, by Norman Doidge.
With that in mind, I am going outside to hug a tree!
Wishing you a spectacular day!