Natural Treatments for Depression
If you suffer from mild to moderate depression, you may be interested in natural treatments. Even cases of severe depression may benefit from natural remedies in conjunction with medication.
Natural treatments run the gamut from supplements to lifestyle changes to alternative therapy. Here are some natural treatments that may help this disorder.
Natural health experts generally agree that diet is important in managing depression symptoms. Some dietary changes you can make include:
- Eat nutrient-dense foods. This helps make sure your body has all the vitamins and minerals it needs for proper brain function. Fresh produce, nuts, and whole grains tend to be rich in vital nutrients.
- EFAs, or essential fatty acids, may help boost mood in depressed individuals. EFAs can be found in healthy oils like olive or safflower, and in fish and nuts.
- Cut back on refined white sugar and corn syrup. These refined sweeteners tend to cause blood sugar spikes and slumps, which contribute to the symptoms of depression.
- Eat whole foods, such as whole grains and fresh produce. This not only provides depressed individuals with much-needed, healthy carbs; it also minimizes artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives from the diet. These artificial substances may contribute to depression in some individuals.
Chiropractic and other Body-Oriented Treatments
These alternative therapies seem to be gaining acceptance among medical experts. Techniques like chiropractic adjustments, massage, acupuncture, and others may help relieve depression symptoms. This may have to do with improving circulation or the elimination of toxins from the tissues of the body. Other body treatments include:
- Dance therapy
- Martial arts
Working out daily can be hard even if you don’t have depression. But it’s even more important if you do – exercise has been shown to help relieve symptoms of depression. This may be due to the ability of exercise to boost brain chemicals that make you feel happy. Exercise brings balance to your life, balancing activity and rest; a balanced lifestyle itself can be very helpful in dealing with depression.
Most sources are consistent in pointing out that exercise need not be strenuous, but that it should be regular – 30 to 60 minutes a day for 3 to 6 days a week.
A good vitamin and mineral supplement that is high in B12 and B6 is said to be good for alleviating depression. Magnesium is another mineral that tends to be deficient in many people, and that is important for proper nerve and muscle function. You may also find that supplements of evening primrose oil, flax oil, or fish oil will help your mood.
Herbal supplements have sometimes been used with success. St. John’s Wort is probably the best-known herb that may combat depression. Others include ginseng, valerian root, and chamomile. Chamomile can be drunk as a tea, as can another tasty sedative herb – lemon balm.
Always check with your doctor before supplementing with any herbs to avoid any adverse drug/herb interactions. And if you know a qualified herbalist, you can get advice from him or her, too.
10 Home Remedies That Alleviate Symptoms of Depression
Depression is a real disease that warrants medical help. It affects 15 million Americans that accounts for over 6% of the country’s total population. Depression is all-encompassing and can take a toll on a person’s day to day life. If you or a family member is suffering from depression, it is very important to seek help from a medical professional. In some instances, both medication and therapy are needed in order to alleviate the symptoms of this mental illness. Medicine is not the only option though – there are quick and natural remedies you can try. Remember to always check with a professional first. Also, even though these might work for one person it doesn’t mean they’ll work for you. Every single person is different – so you’ve got to find the right remedy that will work for you.
Below are ten of those remedies.
Eat Happy Foods
Food can affect your mood. A few options like coconut oil, cherries, flaxseed, and eggs coax the production of serotonin. Serotonin is a chemical that is responsible for your mood. Prescription drugs like Prozac work the same way.
Say No to Coffee
Coffee is great for when you have a lot of things to do and don’t have the energy to do it all. However, the high comes with a significant crash. Being high on caffeine doesn’t do anything good for the chemicals that have a hand in your mood. After the crash, you end up feeling even more exhausted than before you drank coffee.
Drink Green Tea Instead
If you really need a little bit of caffeine, green tea is the way to go. It contains L-theanine, which works with caffeine in order to boost your mood.
Pause and Meditate
With everything that needs to be done day to day, meditation can help. Clearing the mind when you have a lot of chores is a great way to help with your mood. All you need is a quiet place and about half an hour.
People are skeptical of alternative medicine. However, the Chinese have used acupuncture for thousands of years. The way it works is simple. According to the practice, there are 400 body points in the body, sometimes these points get clogged. Acupuncture opens them up, thus alleviating the symptoms of depression.
When you are depressed, it is hard to sleep. Chamomile tea can help with that. Just boil your water and add a little bit of milk and honey, you can have the restful sleep you need.
Load up on B-Vitamins
B-Vitamins play a role in producing chemicals that get the brain running. People who have a deficiency in them tend to be irritable. Try eating more fish, cheese, shellfish, spinach and bell peppers because they are a great source of this vitamin.
Magnesium is the fourth most abundant substance on earth – often this is the reason why it is ignored. However, this mineral is responsible for a ton of biomechanical functions. It helps produce energy, regulate the heart and synthesize other nutrients.
Snack on Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin Seeds are unassuming but they pack a lot of vitamins and minerals. They have healthy fat and magnesium that boost the mood. Plus it is also chock full of amino acids.
Being active is a fundamental factor in boosting a person’s mood. Exercise releases endorphins and endorphins make you happy. So, whenever you feel down and lazy, get up and go for a run. It might suck at first but you would definitely feel refreshed and happier after! Depending on the depression that you have you can help alleviate the systems with a few changes. Try a few of the home remedies above and see if they work for you! It doesn’t hurt to try and could actually help you in so many ways.