Depression can turn to become an unwanted companion that refuses to let go! Those who suffer from depression go pillar to post in the search for a solution that works. While prescription drugs tend to work, they can have other side effects and repercussions.
So what is the alternative? You will be glad to know that there are many great natural remedies that help in treating depression. Here is a look at some of the best ways to treat depression naturally.
Natural Remedies for Depression
1. Increase Intake of Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega 3 fatty acids has profound health benefits. But, did you know that it can also help in treating depression? Fish such as salmon, sardines, and trout are rich sources of Omega-3 fatty acids. You can also ask your doctor to prescribe a supplement of omega 3 fatty acids. Several studies indicate that people with low levels of two important brain chemicals found in fish oil supplements, stand a higher risk for depression.
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2. Increase Your Intake of Saffron
Another natural treatment for depression is saffron. This is a spice that is derived from a dried part of a crocus, a flower in the iris family. According to a study that was published in the Alternative Medicine Review, taking the rod-like stem or the end of the carpel, known as saffron stigma, has been shown to be effective in the treatment of mild to moderate depression.
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3. Get More Active
Exercising is one of the best ways to treat depression naturally. If done correctly, working out can elevate your mood rather reliably and quickly. Experts claim that exercises can positively affect the same neurotransmitter system that medication does. Although which category of workout or how effective it is, still remains to be seen, studies have shown that exercising can eventually relieve symptoms of depression.
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4. Practice Meditation and Yoga
When it comes to natural remedies for depression, there is nothing quite like meditation and relaxation techniques. Meditation and yoga can help reduce stress and anxiety, the two elements that play major roles in triggering depression. Relaxation techniques like yoga, meditation, progressive muscle relaxation and deep breathing do great justice in reliving the symptoms of depression and reducing overall stress. This will in turn contribute to the tranquility and stability of mind.
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5. Try Acupuncture
Several naturopaths claim that acupuncture can treat depression. A new study has proven that this traditional Chinese practice is not just a great way to treat depression but also helpful in alleviating the side effects that are caused by depression medication.
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6. Try Light Therapy
There are a small group of people who are prone to a type of depression known as seasonal affective disorder during winter. One way to naturally relieve symptoms of depression, particularly of this type, may be light therapy. This is because the lack or absence of light is what that is said to be a trigger to this condition. During a light therapy, you will be made to sit in a brightly lit box that imitates outdoor light. Generally, the therapy starts with daily sessions lasting for about 15 minutes, and is gradually increased up to 2 hours per session. The duration depends on the severity of symptoms and how intense the light is, which will be determined by the doctor. Although light therapy does not cure depression, it can effectively ease its symptoms with time.
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7. Take St. John’s Wort Supplements
When it comes to supplements for the natural treatment of depression, St. John’s wort is the most studied. This is a plant with yellow flowers that is commonly used in teas, extract as well as pills. According to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, St. John’s wort may be as beneficial and effective as anti-depressant medications for mild depression. The best part is that it does not come with the side effects that some medications cause. However, there is one caveat you need to keep in mind: St. John’s wort can diminish the effectiveness of certain prescription medications, including HIV drugs, birth control pills, some anti-cancer medications and blood thinners, among others.
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8. Balance Your Hormones
If your adrenal, sex or thyroid hormones are not well balanced, it can affect your mood and make it go all over the place. A good idea is to consult a reputed integrative medicine doctor and request them to order and interpret tests such as:
- Adrenal gland tests – Pregnenolone, DHEA-S and Corstisol
- Thyroid gland tests – Thyroid antibodies, Free T3, Free T4, TSH and Total T3
- Sex hormone tests – Progesterone, Estradiol, Free and Total Testosterone
Normalizing your hormonal balance can make a huge difference in treating depression naturally. This is definitely one of the things you should do to relieve depression symptoms naturally. Once the tests have been interpreted, your doctor will be able to tell you the best course of action to take to treat depression naturally.
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While many still believe that depression is a disease and can not be cured, it is quite the contrary. These are but a few of the many natural remedies for treating depression. If you or someone you know suffers from bouts of depression, ditch the prescription drugs loaded with chemicals and opt for a more holistic and natural way to treat the condition. These remedies are all natural, inexpensive and are sure to work! You may try more than one remedy for relief from depression and the many nagging symptoms of depression.