Dopamine – The Molecule of Reward

 Do  you often  feel demotivated, lethargic, and loss of interest in the surrounding ?

Is it difficult for you to focus? 

This could be because of deficiency of Dopamine, a neurotransmitter also known as the molecule of reward.

Dopamine, is a chemical that transmits signals between nerve cells.

It stimulates pleasure, motivation and feeling of enjoyment.

Dopamine is very important for brain function, and along with epinephrine and norepinephrine it helps the peripheral nervous system to  control  fight or flight response.

Dopamine  produces zest for life, promotes productivity and focus  and is responsible for motivation.

It enables you to plan ahead and resist impulses so that you can achieve your goals.

Dopamine gets you competitive juices flowing and provides you with the thrill in all aspects of your life  or business, sport ,or love.

Dopamine  is in charge of your PLEASURE- REWARD SYSTEM, it allows you to experience the feeling of enjoyment, bliss and euphoria.

Low dopamine levels –  can make you unfocused, demotivated, lethargic and depressed.

It is known that people who have low dopamine levels  can be so depressed that they will starve themselves even if food is available.

Other effects of Low dopamine-




Loss  of libido

Inability to feel pleasure

Inability to connect to others

Sleep problems

Mood swings

Memory loss

Self destructive behavior

Attention deficit disorder

Attention deficit hyperactive disorder. 

Parkinson’s  disease 

Causes of low dopamine

Poor Diet

Nutritional deficiencies


Thyroid disorders

Things that improve dopamine levels

 Eating sugar  , drinking alcohol,sex , Making money – can increase levels of dopamine but this is just a temporary boost

Research shows that

 Nicotine increases the dopamine by 200%

 cocaine increases the levels of dopamine by 400% 

The healthy sources of Dopamine

Dopamine is prepared from Tyrosine  hence you must eat tyrosine rich foods  &  foods that are rich in protein.

Here are few examples.




Green leafy vegetables

Green Tea


Pumpkin seeds

Sesame seeds


Water melon  

Food to Avoid –

 Excess Saturated fat and sugar  both produce a temperary  unhealthy boost hence should be avoided.

Other things that boost dopamine production and circulation are- 

Exercise – regular exercise not only boosts the dopamine production but also increases the amount of dopamine being circulated in the blood.

Regular Meditation – helps you calm down and  balances  the breakdown and circulation of dopamine 

Therapeutic massage  is said to help circulation of dopamine 

And last but not the least taking a cold shower increases the level of dopamine by 250%

Dr Abhay Talwalkar

M.D.( Hom)

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