It’s not unusual for people to feel a little down now and again. If you’ve been feeling down more often than usual you’ll want to talk with a doctor before taking any natural or prescription remedies to combat depression. While a doctor may give you a prescription, there are also some natural anti-depressants you can try.
Many people choose herbal remedies to treat depression because they are believed to have fewer side effects. It is important to speak with your health care professional before doing so, however, because some herbs can have an adverse reaction with medicines you’re already taking. Natural remedies can have drug interactions which could be dangerous so please keep that in mind before choosing one of these natural anti-depressants.
St. John’s Wort has been used as a natural anti-depressant for centuries in European countries. While there are some studies showing St. John’s Wort to be effective in treating depression, other studies claim the herb to be ineffective. Certain prescription drugs may also interact with St. John’s Wort so you’ll want to check with a doctor before taking this herbal remedy.
You may also want to seek the help of a qualified acupuncturist. Acupuncture uses very tiny needles pushed into the skin at specific points in the body. The Chinese use this method of treatment to control symptoms, treat illnesses and improve a person’s overall health. Tiny needles are placed into the skin and it is believed to help treat symptoms of depression including fatigue, appetite changes and insomnia. It will also help improve a person’s mood.
Many people experience bouts of depression as the weather changes and days shorten. This condition, called Seasonal Affective Disorder, is a form of depression which can be treated by light therapy. This treatment basically uses a specific type of fluorescent light to approximate a sunny day. The added light allows the body to produce the correct amounts of serotonin and melatonin which are required to boost mood and allow for proper sleep patterns in the winter months.
Getting outdoors in direct natural sunlight for at least 15 to 45 minutes a day without sunscreen can also improve a person’s mood and help combat depression. The sun helps the body replenish its level of vitamin D which is necessary to increase the serotonin levels in the brain. Of course, if you can’t get outdoors or use special lighting, you can also use a vitamin D supplement.
Don’t forget that what you eat may affect you depression symptoms. Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids are believed to improve the anti-depressive ability of other treatments. Other foods which are believed to affect depression are walnuts, dark chocolate, turkey, Cheddar and Swiss cheese, spinach, whole wheat and citrus fruits. You may also want to change to a natural sweetener such as agave nectar or maple syrup.
Meditation is another natural anti-depressant to consider. There have been a number of medical studies related to meditation and its effect on one’s health. Meditation is believed to help you feel more at peace and release negative thoughts which can plague those with depression.
Many people suffer from depression throughout the year. Not everyone wants to take prescription medications because there are so many side effects. You may want to research the above options. These may be the natural anti-depressant you’re looking for to treat your own symptoms of depression.