9 Signs of Low Serotonin Levels

24 November, 2018
Low serotonin levels can cause changes in your mental health, such as sadness, depression, irritability, trouble sleeping, and aggression

Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that is mostly known for being a hormone that balances your moods, but it’s also responsible for the following. Serotonin:

  • Is a neurotransmitter that regulates the intensity of the signals your neurons emit.
  • Regulates gastrointestinal function.
  • Helps you form blood clots.
  • Stimulates the part of your brain that causes you to vomit if you consume something that’s toxic or an irritant.
  • Regulates the calcium levels in your bones.
  • Maintains the quality of your dreams
  • Adjusts your libido and sexual function.

Because serotonin is involved in a variety of processes in the human body, there are lots of different symptoms when your levels are low.

If you want to know more about the signs that you have low serotonin levels, keep reading today’s article.

1-Feeling anxious

serotonin levels
People who have low levels of serotonin usually suffer from anxiety, which can be accompanied by depression in many cases.

At the same time, low levels of serotonin can also cause:

These symptoms are usually alleviated or disappear when you take medication or adapt a diet to restore serotonin levels.

2-Digestive problems

Serotonin isn’t just associated with digestive processes: in fact, 95% of it is found in your intestines.

That’s why having too little of this hormone can directly affect your gastrointestinal system, to the point of even developing irritable bowel syndrome.

When you increase your serotonin levels, however, your condition will return to normal.

Maybe you’re interested in reading: What is generalized anxiety disorder?

3-Emotional hypersensitivity

As most people know, this hormone is directly associated with emotional stability. A low level can cause you to be more sensitive than usual.

It might reach the point in which any comment or slight feels worse than it actually is.

4-Serotonin and carbohydrates

Serotonin and carbohydrates
If a person has low levels of serotonin, it’s normal for their body to try to compensate by eating carbohydrates and sweets.

These foods actually increase serotonin levels in your brain.

That’s why you feel so satisfied when you eat foods that are full of sugar – your serotonin levels increase significantly…but only temporarily.

We recommend you read: 7 foods that improve your mood


In addition, when serotonin levels are lower than they should be, it starts to affect your daily activities and can lead to fatigue.

It’s common for people who suffer from low serotonin to experience feelings of:

  • Lethargy
  • Fatigue
  • Apathy
  • Lack of energy
  • Lack of motivation


Too much or too little serotonin can directly affect your libido, or sexual desire.

This is because your body is naturally attracted by emotion, desire, and excitement.

When you remove or add an important hormone like serotonin, everything is affected.

7-Trouble falling asleep

In addition, a deficit in this hormone can cause a lot of problems at night, such as:

  • Trouble sleeping
  • Difficulty obtaining deep sleep
  • Trouble staying asleep
  • Constant nightmares
  • Insomnia
  • Inability to relax

This is because serotonin is part of your biological clock, which functions to help your body rest at night.

We recommend you read: How to sleep well

8-Sensitivity to noise

Sensitivity to noise
When you’re suffering from low serotonin levels, it’s very common to feel highly sensitive to sound.

This is because very high levels cause even the quietest noises to seem very exaggerated.

9-Constant mood swings

When you have low levels of serotonin, it’s common to suffer from constant mood swings, as well.

This is because serotonin is responsible for stabilizing your moods.

That’s why it’s common to see dramatic changes in a person’s mood over a short time, including:

  • Aggressive behavior
  • Anxiety
  • Sensitivity
  • Depression
  • Unhappiness

Usually, none of these symptoms are permanent. Once the serotonin in your body is replenished – either naturally or with medications – everything returns to normal.