for Combating Depression
Effective Strategies for Combating Mood Disorders:
The discovery of antidepressant drugs in the later 20th century provided a more palatable route to dealing with mood disorders. The original antidepressants, known as MAO inhibitors, could bring people out from the depths of major depression as successfully as shock treatment. However, MAO inhibitors can cause serious and even fatal side effects, and most prescription antidepressants cause as many problems as they do help. No one would ever think of using MAO inhibitors to treat mild to moderate depression.
Here is the NIH list of known side-effects from prescription antidepressants:
Nervousness and insomnia
So, we need other options and tactics for dealing with depression. Fortunately, they are available. Here are some helpful suggestions that have strong support in dealing with mood issues:
1. Be active. This is so important because inactivity leads to depression. No matter what you decide to do, just make sure you do something. Particularly choose activities that boost your energy: take a walk, do some exercise, pace while you talk, etc. Research shows that when people move faster, their metabolism speeds up, and the activity is good for your focus, your mood, and the retention of information. Pick activities you like, that make you feel better. There is nothing better for feeling good than to help others, so try an activity that brings happiness to someone else and watch how it affects you. The truth is simply that we often believe we act because of the way we feel, when, in fact, we feel because of the way we act.
2. Be positive. Yes it's been said so often, but it is true: change your mind and you change your reality. Mental attitude is critical to healthy wellbeing. Use affirmations, spend time around active positive people, but remember, we are what we think. Clean up your thoughts for a healthy life. Also remember to not make major decisions while you are in a down state.
3. Get outside for the light. Exposure to the full, broad-spectrum light found outdoors during the daytime helps us sleep better and wards things like Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), a type of mood disorder caused by changing hours of daylight across the year. Exposure to strong daylight helps regulate our mood and sleep patterns. Lack of daylight during the winter months can cause the low mood often referred to as 'winter blues.' Sunlight offers many important benefits so get outside for a while each day.
4. Be social. The worst thing for people feeling low is to be solitary. Enjoy the comfort of good friends or family, be around people you like, just be engaged with someone else. The idea here is to get out of yourself, and have some interaction, and hear about other people's lives, and take your mind off your own problems for awhile.
5. Create an environment around you that encourages peace and ease. Use music, aromatherapy, icons, or whatever works for you to bring your mind to a standstill and allow stillness to soothe your body and mind. Meditation can be a very good way to change your mood. Also, try clearing and cleaning your room/office/home so that you can maintain a sense of order and calm. It is very important that you have a space that is a sanctuary, filled with things that make you comfortable and relaxed, where you can always go to reflect and recharge.
6. Balance your body chemistry through diet and nutrition. There are so many effective ways to supplement one's health that it makes sense to understand what works. Foods rich in tryptophan will help increase key neurotransmitters. Omega-3 oils are very efficacious. One 4-week, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial evaluated the potential benefits of fish oil in 20 individuals with depression. Six of 10 participants given fish oil, but only one of 10 given placebo, showed at least a 50% reduction in depression scores by the end of the trial. (A reduction of this magnitude is considered a "cure.") In addition, a double-blind, placebo-controlled study of 70 people with depression that did not respond well to drug treatment found that the addition of ethyl-EPA (a modified form of a primary ingredient of fish oil) improved the response. Carbohydrates stimulate serotonin production, which in turn can affect mood changes. Meat, fish, eggs, cheese, yogurt and milk are high in proteins that increase amino acid intake. As with carbohydrates, these too make you feel more positive. Special serotonin foods are cabbage, brown rice, oats, whole wheat, bananas and other carbohydrate rich foods. Make sure you have a full supplement of Vitamin B, magnesium, zinc and iron - a deficiency in any of these can lead to depression and anxiety-type symptoms and insomnia. Eat more smaller meals and avoid sugar. Try a product like Green 33 for total balance.
Ingredients found in MOOD IMPROVE like 5-HTP, St Johns Wort, SamE, L-Theanine, L-Tyrosine and Vitamins B6 and B12 are believed to have significant impact on serotonin production and make an excellent basis for nutritional prevention of depression and mood disorders. It is a fact that a diet high in fats and processed foods, environmental pollutions and modern stressful lifestyles contribute greatly to depleted brain chemical functioning and can often lead to depressive states and illnesses of varying degrees. Without correction and specific nutrients that are essential to emotional health, long-term clinical or degrees of depression may result.
7. Exercise. Although studies are inconclusive, intuitive intelligence is enough to support the value of exercise. In much research, various forms of exercise proved beneficial for depression. It may not be the activity itself so much as the act of participating in social / outdoor events or simply giving the mind and body a rest from the worry and tension. Exercise is a great stress reliever as it helps to burn stress chemicals like adrenaline. It also enhances self esteem since we derive confidence at meeting challenges.
8. Get a checkup at your doctors to eliminate the possibility that thyroid function, allergies, Parkinson's disease, and hormonal disorders may be the cause of your depression. Find a doctor/psychiatrist who will use the dexamethasone suppression test (DST), the thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH) stimulation test, and the MHPG urine test to find imbalances . Also, discuss all the options for various 'talk' therapies as possible avenues of approach. Only a qualified psychiatrist can decide which of all the techniques should be employed. These psychotherapies help patients gain insight into and resolve their problems through verbal exchange with the therapist, sometimes combined with "homework" assignments between sessions. "Behavioral" therapists help patients learn how to obtain more satisfaction and rewards through their own actions and how to unlearn the behavioral patterns that contribute to or result from their depression. We sincerely believe that SSRI's and other pharmaceutical drug therapies should be absolute last resorts.
9. Avoid alcohol, drugs caffeine, sugar, fats, and get plenty of good sleep.
Be grateful. Everyone has reasons to be thankful.
Gratitude and humility are key emotions for mood health. It is excellent
for re-orienting oneself spiritually and emotionally. And don't forget
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NOTICE: St. John's Wort appears to affect an important metabolic pathway that is used by many drugs prescribed to treat conditions such as AIDS, heart disease, seizures, certain cancers, and rejection of transplants. Therefore, patients should consult their doctors regarding potential drug interactions before using any St Johns Wort formula.
Medications of any kind prescribed, over-the counter, or borrowed should never be mixed without consulting the doctor. Other health professionals who may prescribe a drug such as a dentist or other medical specialist should be told of the medications the patient is taking. Some drugs, although safe when taken alone can, if taken with others, cause severe and dangerous side effects. Some drugs, like alcohol or street drugs, may reduce the effectiveness of antidepressants and should be avoided. This includes wine, beer, and hard liquor. Some people who have not had a problem with alcohol use may be permitted by their doctor to use a modest amount of alcohol while taking one of the newer antidepressants.
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Disclaimer: All product information and articles provided are for informational purposes only. The information listed about the products on this website have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration, are not to be taken as professional advice, and should be used only as a guideline for working with your physician. You must read all product packaging carefully.
MOOD IMPROVE is not a drug and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder, dysthymic disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, or any other disease. MOOD IMPROVE should not be considered equivalent to or a substitute for an FDA-approved drug.