10 – Omega 3 supplements
Omega 3 oils can be found in foods like fish. You know how doctors often recommend eating fish as part of a healthy diet? Well, that’s because of the fish oils that contains omega 3. Increasing your intake of omega 3 in the form of fish oil is a good idea and taking a fish oil omega 3 supplement can help. Various studies have now found that taking Omega 3 supplements can help treat depression. It has been shown to be as effective as antidepressants when given to patients with depression who are not suffering from anxiety disorders.
9 – Bananas
Contain vitamin B and serotonin, which is a “happy chemical”. Many doctors believe depression may be caused when patients lack serotonin and eating a banana may actually make you happier! Eating four bananas a week can be a great natural way to treat depression. Just a word of warning, though, as bananas do not work for everybody. For some bananas may trigger migraines and if you suffer from acid reflux or digestion problems make sure you eat very ripe (slightly brown bananas) or you’ll regret reaching for that natural yellow cure.
8 – Yoga
Yoga is a great way to relieve stress. One of the problems of depression is stress and the inability to relax. Yoga is also a form of physical exercise and can make you more aware of your breathing. It also relaxes the mind. There are different levels of difficulty in Yoga and so you can easily find a suitable Yoga session that will help you. Yoga can help ease depression and anxiety because it also features deep relaxation and meditation exercises. It has also been shown to help moderate the stress response and reduce emotional stress in people who take take regular weekly sessions over a period of time.
7 – Aromatherapy
Smell and emotion is connected in the brain. Aromatherapy uses the sense of smell to stimulate certain emotions. Essential oils can be used to stimulate the endocrine system and areas of the brain associated with depression. Certain pleasant smells provoke a sense of well-being and can reduce stress, tension and anxiety which all help treat symptoms of depression. Aromatherapy is not a depression cure by itself but is very effective in helping stimulate positive emotions and feelings.
6 – Art Therapy
Art Therapy can also stimulate the brain and promote positive emotional responses in anyone suffering from depression. Art therapy encourages creativity and expression of inner emotion. As it is a form of expression, is can be very therapeutic. When you focus your thoughts on doing something creative you are very present in the moment and concentrating so that the destructive thinking that accompanies depression is interrupted and replaced with more positive thoughts.
It is not necessary to be talented in any form of art, the important factor in Art Therapy is the need to express feelings. It is the process of creating something, (music, writing or a piece of artwork), that helps you heal inside.
5 – Meditation
Meditation relaxes the mind and so reduces stress. Depression often results in a confused and very tired mind coupled with stress and so meditation on a regular basis is very beneficial. Meditation helps prevent relapse into depression. It only takes 10-15 minutes of your time and should be done daily for best effect. The exact process to follow depends on the person but meditation works well when you repeat positive affirmations or visualise good things happening to you whilst in this relaxed state. You can also use CDs and guided meditations to help you.
4 – Sunshine
There is actually a condition known as SAD, (Seasonal Affective Disorder), which affects most people in winter. This disorder is basically a lack of light or sunshine. Treatment includes a certain amount of UV light at regular intervals.
Sunshine is healthy in limited amounts and boosts your body’s store of Vitamin D. Be careful not to overdo exposure to sunlight – you only need a small amount to change your mood. If you live in a cloudy place then seek any opportunity to get out when the sun comes out or it brightens up. If you live, as ı do, in a sunny place chances are you regularly get that boost of happiness from the sun.
3 – Music
Music changes your brain waves instantly and so your mood responds very quickly to the music you listen to. Sounds can cause an emotional reaction very quickly and so you can use inspirational music to lift your spirits. If you are tired then relaxing music can relax you and take away stress. Music can be used to help you relax your mind and meditate or can assist you in changing your mood from negative to positive. Regularly listening to positive music can change your mood longer term and lift you out of the negativity and hopelessness of depression. Music works on just about everyone, just find the kind of music that works for you and put on those headphones!
2 – Exercise
Exercise is obviously of benefit physically but also has an incredible benefit to your mental health too. Exercising stimulates endorphins in the brain and these make you feel good. Concentrating on an exercise or on your exercise goals focuses your mind away from your problems or negative thoughts. Being active has the added bonus of helping you to look better and feel younger and more energetic. As depression saps your energy and makes you tired and stressed exercise reverses this and is a great pick me up.
Exercise also gets you out of the house and can help you meet people if you exercise outside or at the gym. The exercise and health goals you create will also motivate you to take more positive steps in your life which will also reduce your depression. Get exercising and get happy!
1 – St. John’s Wort
This is a natural herbal plant used to treat depression. It has been shown to be as affective as antidepressants in many cases and has fewer side effects. Most people will have no problems using St. John’s wort although it can rarely cause sensitivity to light and sun and/or digestive problems. There can be reaction with other drugs so you should check for this if you are using other medication.
St. John’s Wort relaxes you and reduces mood swings and depression and, having used it myself, I recommend you try it.
Read more about natural cures for depression. Natural is best!
By Karl Perera