NATURAL WAYS TO HELP DEPRESSION.
There can be so many factors that impact your depression.
In dealing with depression and anxiety over many years, I have found I now take care of myself in multiple areas due to depression being so complex and unique to everyone.
One of these areas is through vitamin deficiency.
In the first instance it would be good to get a blood test to see if or what you are deficient in.
But these are the vitamins I take on recommendation from my GP and that have helped in relieving my symptoms.
I underestimated how much this would help me!
Magnesium often is an important nutrient that is missing in today’s diets.
Pesticides and fertilizers stop plants from being able to absorb magnesium from the soil. Almonds, cashews, pumpkin seeds and dark chocolate are Magnesium rich foods.
2: 5-HTP (5Hydroxytryptophan)
It increases a brain chemical called serotonin.
Not found in food but is created from another amino acid, tryptophan. Tryptophan is found in high-protein foods like meat, poultry, seafood, dairy and eggs.
Do not take on an empty stomach.
3: Vitamin D Well known for it’s use to help maintain healthy teeth and bones. It’s not exactly known how Vitamin D works on the human brain, only that our brains are full of Vitamin D receptors. Importantly, Vitamin D can affect the part of the brain associated with learning, memory and mood.
4: Probiotics: I found it hard to get my head around the theory that by altering the bacteria in your gut you can better handle stress and improve your mood.
Probiotics are digestive microbes that live in your gut. Weirdly they send chemical signals to your brain (through your Vagus nerve) telling it to make hormones associated with happiness.
5: Vitamin B Complex.
Helps to produce and control the chemicals that influence mood and other brain functions. Vitamin B’s also contribute to the process of releasing energy from our foods especially with our love of highly processed foods.
This vitamin helps process amino acids that are the building blocks of proteins and some hormones. This is needed to make serotonin, melatonin and dopamine.
You probably know turmeric more by the fact it’s used in Asian foods and in particular in curries. It contains a chemical called curcumin.
Turmeric has been found useful so many conditions i.e. arthritis, irritable bowel, headaches, jaundice, fibromyalgia, liver problems, depression, stomach ulcers, menstrual problems…and the list goes on.
7: Vitamin C.
Eating fast food and very little vegetables and fruit can produce low levels of Vitamin C in your body which in turn can be the cause of your depression and anxiety.
Mark Riordan, M.D., a specialist in orthomolecular medicine, states that 30 percent of depressed patients who receive vitamin C supplements will improve.
A study done at the Department of Neuroscience in Nashville Tennessee on mice where they deprived mice of vitamin C, showed this deprivation of Vitamin C caused depression and lethargy, but importantly it showed decreases of dopamine and serotonin which is linked to anxiety and depression in humans.
NOTE: This will vary with everyone but this can take anything from 3-6 months before you reap the benefits.
DIET TO HELP – PALEO DIET BENEFITS!
It is underestimated how much diet plays a large part in our moods. You must have noticed at times how sluggish you feel after you have eaten a meal.
That’s because what we eat effects the neurotansmitters our brain produces. These are the brain chemicals which effect our moods.
The foods we eat provides the building blocks for these chemicals as our brains extract nutrients from the foods we eat to create neurotransmitters.
Created on the basis of cutting out modern foods that processed, loaded with sugar fats and additives and return to the way our very early hunter-gathers ancestors ate.
Eating foods that heal, fill you up faster and have more nutritional value such as nuts, vegetables, fruit, healthy vitamins, fiber and low protein.
Better nutrition, will give you more energy, mental clarity that in turn will help you sleep better
I’ve kept this till last because it was challenging to do when compared to buying vitamin tablets
My GP was the first person to recommend I go grain free, and suggested that it was better to talk in terms of a particular diet, in this case Paleo, to give me a better understanding of what I could eat and recipes I could make that would avoid grains.
Paleo is one of the diets that comes the closest to fulfilling the brief of no grains and no sugar.
What initially makes this diet a challenge is that you are going to have to forget about your usual basics in your kitchens cupboards and start afresh.
I have complied the following list based on what my kitchen cupboards contains.
FLOURS & POWDERS.
· Almond Flour
· Tapioca Starch.
· Baking Soda.
· Cream of Tartar
· Guar Gum
· Coconut Milk, either fresh or tinned.
· Almond Milk, this can be bought fresh or in a carton, but check the ingredients, only ingredient expectable is Calcium Carbonate.
· Extra Virgin Olive Oil
· Walnut Oil.
· Coconut Oil
· Extra Virgin Olive Oil
· Avocado Oil.
· Balsamic Vinegar.
· White Wine Vinegar
· Cider Vinegar.
· Rice Vinegar.
· Ginger fresh or dried.
· Dried Oregano.
· Himalayan Salt.
· Garam Masala
· Curry Powder.
· Hot Pepper Flakes.
NUTS & SEEDS.
· Brazil Nuts.
· Almond Butter.
· Cashew Butter.
· Coconut Butter.
· Dried Cranberries.
· Dates (normally Medjool.)
· Unsweetened Shredded Coconut.
· Raw Honey.
· Homemade Unsweetened Apple Sauce.
· Pure Vanilla Extract.
· Pure Maple Syrup.
· Coconut Sugar.
PALEO DIET BENEFITS.
Sugar keeps your body in a state of stress and this will contribute to your depression.
This is where a bad diet affects your brain, causing inflammation. We have all at some point resorted to comfort eating and mainly by consuming processed, fat fueled foods loaded with sugar.
If you have been battling with diets previously this will help you loose weight – as well as helping you feel amazing.
You will probably have some flu like symptoms as a result of no sugar that shouldn’t last any longer than 2-5 days.
This is because your body is changing every cell from sugar (carbohydrate) burning to fat burning. So your body’s new preferred energy source is now fats.
THE GUT AND BRAIN CONNECTION.
Your gut and brain are connected, and most people with depression or mood disorders will also have gut disorders.
Protecting your brain from inflammation via a Paleo diet also reduces the inflammation in your gut.
An amazing fact is that the gut is often referred to as the second brain because it contains the same tissue and can produce many of the same chemicals messengers as in the brain.
We are what we eat!