Ever wonder why you’re super focused & motivated at certain points during the month, but then totally lacking in drive & clarity and other points?
There are many reasons (e.g. stress, lack of sleep, inadequate nutrition) however, if you’re female, your hormones could also be a contributor. In menstruating women, levels of steroid hormones such as oestrogen and progesterone fluctuate throughout the menstrual cycle. These hormones influence the release of different neurotransmitters in our brains, including dopamine.
Inadequate dopamine can contribute to feelings of low motivation, low energy, poor concentration, and just generally feeling a bit blah.
In the part of the brain known as the stratium, oestrogen enhances the release of dopamine. We see the highest point of oestrogen just before ovulation. Studies show that women with lower end dopamine generally feel fabulous at this point – sharp, focused, motivated and super productive, everything comes together. This is because the surge in oestrogen, pushes their dopamine higher.
Women with naturally high end dopamine can actually feel worse at this point. The surge in oestrogen pushes the dopamine too high, which then results poor condition & memory, because too much dopamine is as problematic as too little.
So like everything, its about the optional amount for you, because we are all wired differently.
To improve motivation, drive and clarity associated with hormonal imbalance they key is to work on regulating hormones & identifying the things that causing them to become deranged in the first place (e.g. stress). There are a range of different nutrients that can help with improving dopamine such as l-theanine, NAC & bacopa. I also adore the book Atomic Habits for some great life changing tips.