Hormones are highly important organic substances which are secreted by plants and animals and function in the regulation of physiological activities and also instigate the maintenance of homeostasis (that is, the regulation of internal environments). Hormones are responsible for the response initiated by a tissue or a specific organ in the body.

 What then are endorphins?

There are several situations and tasks in which people tend to involve themselves for one reason or another, mostly with the aim to buy survival. Doing certain things actually lead to some form of depression, anxiety, pain, heart attack, bad mood swing, stress, etc.; however, without taking any pills, some natural chemicals fight against these states and bring one back to a balanced state. It is only left to individuals who find themselves in these states to know when the endorphins are released, where they are released and under what conditions they are released. Endorphins are endogenous opioids released from the pituitary glands that are believed to mediate analgesia, induce euphoria, and play a role in the reward system in the brain [1]
the human brain
Various researchers have, since the discovery of these neurochemicals in the mid-1970s, taken up the study of endorphins for further studies in the science of physiology. The name “endorphin” is derived from two words, endogenous and morphine, because these hormones act similar to morphine (a natural opiate) within the natural opioid system [1].
Researchers have found a correlation between vigorous exercise and elevated endorphin levels in blood plasma, while some evidence does suggest that endorphins are part of a general class of hormones known as endogenous opioids, a group which also includes enkephalins and dynorphins. Although there are about twenty different kinds of endorphins, there exist three common ones [2].

Three common types of endorphins

 Beta-endorphins: these are proteins that are synthesized by the pituitary gland
Enkephalins: a kind of endorphin. They are neurotransmitters which work to reduce pains.
Dynorphins: they contain peptides with signals.
Beta-endorphins are the kind of endorphins produced in the pituitary gland.
Enkephalins, together with dynorphins are both produced in the nervous system [2].

 When are endorphins released?

There are so many situations that lead to the release of endorphins. Some of which are: involvement in different exercises, food consumption, during sex, meditation, fear, love, listening to music, chocolate eating and laughter [1, 3]. It is estimated that we do continuous exercise for more than 30 minutes before the release of these hormones. When there is high stress in our minds, this stress stimulates the release of endorphin hormones which calm the brain in a stress situation and bring the feeling of happiness.

 What are the causes of the release of endorphins?

 Accident or injury influences the release of endorphins. When our body is in high pain, there are signals of pain that prompt the release of endorphins from the pituitary gland to take action. However, pain may be of any kind or come from any source, but the fact of it remains that it initiates the release of endorphins [3].
Acupuncture: this is when needles are inserted into some focal points (usually for medical purposes) and the insertion causes pain. The released pain signals stimulate the pituitary gland to release endorphins [1, 3].
Endorphins are released during meditation. Meditation increases the production of serotonin (a compound which is a neurotransmitter in blood platelets) in the brain which has influence over our mood and behavior [4].
Sex: sexual intercourse is accompanied with pain, however, during sexual intercourse, usually when it’s at its apex, endorphins are released and the initial pain turns to pleasure. During sexual intercourse, when endorphin is released, it gives a happy feeling and it also acts on complexion (beautifies the skin). That is why, despite the pain, due to the release of these hormones, females tend to look younger and more charming than they really are. That is why it is possible for a married woman to look more alluring than an unmarried one. Also, this is why sex is often seen as one of the keys to a healthy life. A research was done, comparing two young girls: one unmarried and other who married, about a year before the research. It’s the endorphin effect which is released during sex that brought the charm and shining on the face of the married girl. “People look ten years younger because of this endorphin and this is because endorphin reduces or removes superoxide and retards aging process” [3, 5].
Consumption of chocolate, peppers and spicy foods also produces the release of endorphins [3].
Music releases endorphins in the blood and changes one’s mood. Change in mood is directly proportional to the release of endorphin. The bad or depressed mood of patients changes when they are given external endorphin injections [3]. “It (sound & music) also trims complications after a heart attack, calms anxiety, slows breathing and increases production of endorphins, the body’s natural painkillers. Consider: 80% of stimuli that reach our brains come in through our ears” [2]. How amazing!

Are there tablets that contain endorphins?

 The answer to the above question is a sure yes. Tablets which contain oral endorphin are administered to patients who suffer anxiety.  Anxiety is like a disease which comprises the feeling of worry, nervousness, unhappy mood, fear of death, etc. With the effectiveness of these drugs, all negative feelings turn positive after taking these pills containing endorphin. Having taken these tablets, patients do feel more healthy and comfortable, regain their strengths and afterward comes the feeling of wellbeing. These, therefore, are the positive effects of endorphin on anxiety. Research has it that if the patients in question succumb to continuous 45 minutes of fast walking daily in the morning and evening, there will be no need to take more oral tablets [3].
It is, however, unfortunate that the main problem in studying the hormone is that it remains in the blood for a few seconds after which it disappears. In other words, it does not last as much as the pain lasts. So the intensity and release of these hormones remain difficult to measure [3].

Understanding endorphins at a glance

Hormones have earlier been discussed as the organic substances that propagate the continuation of the processes known as regulation of the internal environment. Endorphins are then the hormones that enable workforce at the period when one is almost in the state of decline. They are the hormones that gear up the secretion of necessary materials when one is in the state of diminishing return.

Major functions of endorphins

Endorphins enhance the promotion of wellness in the human health, particularly the mental state. They prevent depression, heart attack, and pains (as a result of stress or injury sustained through accident). They also assist in lowering blood pressure, bringing calmness to the state of mind and as well help in reducing aging — appearing to be old at a tender age (as explained in the sexual intercourse factor).

Benefits of endorphins

That major benefit which every other benefit leads to is HAPPINESS. When one is depressed, there is automatically no concentration of the mind in whatever one is engaged, anxiety tends to set in when there is a loss of focus, and anxiety is a disease that puts every possibility at a wreck. This thus leads to one having negative thoughts.
Usually and quite unfortunately,  people tend to subject themselves to taking all kinds of drugs, without the knowledge that the cure for their illness actually lies within the body. When the mind is settled, the brain heeds to proper functioning.


Every living individual has the tendency to survive, depending on how much knowledge she or he has about how to make the brain release the hormone that would provide the cure. The basic message of this article is that one must know himself or herself and how the internal environments are regulated. The exposure to these endorphins is with the view to stimulate cheerfulness and to bring peace to the mind. For the fact that the brain controls all other parts of the body, there is, therefore, the need to study it closely on how it receives information sent by hormones in order to foster growth, development and a happy life.


[1] Andrea Leuenberger, “Endorphins,  Exercise, and Addictions: A Review of Exercise Dependence.” Impulse: The Premier Journal for Undergraduate Publications in the Neurosciences, pp. 1-9, 2006.
[2] Music For Health Services. Understanding Endorphins: Module Four Part two (4.2), 2011.
[3] P.B. Rokade, “Release of Endorphin Hormone and Its Effects on Our Body and Moods: A Review” in International Conference on Chemical, Biological and Environment Sciences, ICCEBS 2011, Bangkok, Dec 2011, pp. 436-438.
[4] Julek Meissner N.D., Meditation and Our Body Chemistry
[5] Ernest J.W. Barrington, “House Biochemistry” in Encyclopedia Britannica.