I want to be happy.
Instinctually, we all come hard-wired with this "pursuit of happiness" inclination, and yet the feeling is so darn elusive. Oftentimes, it seems that the busy-ness of life thwarts our most innate desire at every turn. It’s such an important social topic that Time Magazine devoted an entire issue to the subject last June. Gretchen Rubin’s The Happiness Project started as a book, but has become a 21st Century lifestyle manifesto. And the term “finding happiness” returns 99 million Google results.
Which begs the question; if you had a shot at happiness — literally, an injection — would you take it?
It’s called facial feedback and the premise is simple: The expressions we make on our face are connected to the emotions we feel. If you smile broadly, you WILL feel happier at that moment. In fact, you need your smile to help you feel the emotion. Conversely, the act of frowning will negatively impact your thinking, coloring your outlook accordingly. By paralyzing the facial muscles used for frowning, Botox prevents people from physically displaying expressions of negative emotion which, in turn, makes them feel happier. The science itself is fascinating, and the evidence supporting Botox for happiness seems to be mounting. A variety of seemingly definitive studies are explored in a new book called The Faces of Emotion by Dr. Eric Finzi, who suggests that the link between Botox and depression is an important one:
Triggering more than a simple confidence boost, Botox not only has the potential to bring relief to patients suffering from depression or anger issues, but to spur long-term happiness.
As it turns out, Botox isn’t the only injectable mood enhancer. For those on the fence about Botulinum toxin, there’s a more natural alternative to consider — Vitamin B12.
According to The Idiot’s Guide to Vitamins & Minerals: Depression is one of the earliest symptoms for anyone low on B vitamins. In fact, studies show that at least one in four of all people hospitalized for depression are deficient in B-6 and B-12. But depression isn’t the only issue. You may even need extra B’s if you are chronically stressed, drink coffee or alcohol regularly, smoke, are on a diet, or are over 60 — which helps explain why B-deficiencies are rampant in our modern “microwave” society (40%, according to Tufts University)!
Weekly or monthly injections of Vitamin B12, which contain B12 and all the B-complex vitamins, help synthesize the “feel good” neurotransmitters dopamine, serotonin and epinephrine, stabilizing and improving mood, energy, sleep, appetite, motivation, movement, cognition and numerous other brain functions. Plus, it’s also great for the skin. After feeling the positive effects of a B12 injection, getting them on a regular basis may be just the boost your mind and body needs. It’s a simple shot in the arm to feeling happy, healthier, and stronger.