Are There Natural Antidepressants?
Yes, there are natural antidepressants.
There are many natural ways to replace antidepressants in your life, and one of the best natural antidepressants out there is your family and friends. Being surrounded by love is one of the best things that you can do for your life.
But when that is not enough, you need a natural antidepressant that really works for you. The only problem with natural antidepressants is that they do not work fast. You need time to allow the natural antidepressants to work in your system. So, if you are experiencing severe depression, experiencing suicidal thoughts, or you need to change right now, visit your doctor for a prescription. Then, you can apply some of the techniques we have here in order to get off of the prescription medication and use the natural remedies to replace the antidepressants.
We’re going to talk about in the first portion of this article the aspects of depression and what you can expect from prescription medication vs. natural antidepressants. Because what good is our natural antidepressants if you don’t know they’re working?
In the latter half of the article, we’re going to talk about what remedies are good for depression and where you can buy them.
Your doctor is the person who prescribes medication for depression and this is the person you need to have this discussion with. Your doctor is also the person who is going to actually treat your depression and anxiety. You should talk about any home remedies for depression you plan to take with your doctor before starting.
How Long for Depression to Go Away
Depending on the severity and the type of depression you have, your depression might go away instantly or it may take months to years to go away. Most people who have deep depression say their symptoms do go away, but if they’re not careful then they can come back.
Many people have cured depression without antidepressants for both mild and severe depression. Like we said before, depression has been around a very long time, but medications have not.
The one thing you have to realize is that depression came on slowly, and it will go away slowly. There is no quick fix for depression. It takes work, and it takes dedication, both of which are exceptionally difficult when you are depressed.
Just know this - you can come out of depression and you can be normal.
Antidepressants vs. Natural Cures
Natural remedies for depression work by strengthening the body and removing the causes of the initial depression. Very few natural cures for depression work by replacing or adjusting the hormone levels in your body. That is the big difference between prescription antidepressants and natural cures.
There are two other big differences. First, natural cures take a lot longer to work than antidepressants. Because the prescription antidepressants force a change in your body, many people feel relief in a very short time. The natural cure works by supporting the body’s natural systems so it may take a lot longer to notice a change.
Secondly, antidepressants must be thoroughly checked against any other medication you were taking for signs of interaction. Some of the most serious interactions include self-harm and suicide. While you must check natural cures to make sure they don’t interact with any other medication, very rarely does a natural cure generate the feelings of deeper depression or suicide.
When Prescription Medication Works
We do recommend you take medication when your depression is severe, self-harm has happened, or you begin feeling suicidal thoughts. Yes, this is one of the few times when medication is needed for depression. The natural cures do not work fast enough or strong enough to bring quick change that is needed to preserve life.
Prescription medication for depression works in many different ways. Most of the time, it works by altering the brain chemistry to return normal function and balance between the hormones. Many works by adjusting the levels of serotonin or dopamine in the brain. Some medications increase the levels of these hormones, while others prevent the body from reabsorbing and breaking down these hormones. That allows them to stay in the body longer, making you feel better.
If this is one of your issues, this is a perfect reason to take medication for your depression. We do recommend you be tested for your levels, so you are not taking a medication that is unnecessary.
But, unfortunately, you’re not going to find medication for depression without side effects. These are powerful medications that alter your brain chemistry. For most people, the side effect is actually feeling better. The vast majority of people will feel more like themselves when on the medication.
Once people start feeling better, they should seek out treatments for depression without medication. That way the body can begin to take over regulating its own hormones and you do not need to rely on the prescription medication.
There are several alternatives to antidepressants once your body has regulated its hormonal cycle. These alternative treatments for the depression include exercise, herbs, foods and other techniques that will go over in a little bit.
We do know the one thing people want is natural antidepressant drugs. Unfortunately, despite marketing efforts, these just don’t exist. You can have supplements, which help the body, but not an actual drug.
Prescription medication, otherwise known as drugs, is in the realm of the medical world and should be treated with the respect medication deserves.
One of the side effects of medication for depression is weight gain. During the depression, the hormones that regulate hunger and fullness are disrupted. As your hormones become regulated, you will begin to feel hungry again. The biggest reason for weight gain is that you become hungry for foods that lack nutritional value and are high in sugars. If you can control yourself, which is very difficult coming out of depression, choose healthy fruits and vegetables. This will help prevent any weight gain and give your body the nutrition to fight the depression.
When you have pain that accompanies your depression, medication is something that will help. Many doctors are reluctant to give both pain medication and depression medication at the same time. Many times, the pain can actually cause the depression. In other cases, the depression can cause the pain. Doctors will try and resolve one issue first, then address the other. In many cases, once one is relieved, the other naturally goes away. If that is not the case, there are combination medicines that a doctor may use.
In the elderly, depression is a common occurrence due to the lack of ability to move as they used to or increased pain. Using medication for depression with dementia, especially Alzheimer’s disease, has proved to be very successful. The levels of depression medication have been shown to improve the quality of life of people with dementia and in a few cases actually slow or stop the progression.
Agitated depression is a real thing, a major depressive disorder with restlessness and motor excitement. Agitated depression was once called Melancholia Agitata. It is often misdiagnosed as ADHD, schizophrenia, or bipolar disorder. Although seemingly mild, this is considered a severe depressive disorder and should be overseen by a doctor or psychologist. Please do not try natural cures with this disorder without consulting your physician.
One of the most severe depressive disorders is depression with psychosis. The medication for depression with psychosis is often very high dosage and often delivered in hospital settings where the patient is admitted for continual observation. This is not something to treat at home and not something to go through trial and error of the natural treatments. Your physician should be in charge of any treatment with psychotic depression.
When Nothing Works for Depression
When medications don't work for depression, it is time to seek out more natural cures. What medications are wonderful and are a great aid to many depressive disorders, there are times that you just don’t feel right on the medications. In these cases, the medication might not be treating the cause of your depression at all. As we move into the natural treatments, we’re going to be dealing with systemic changes within the body that helps support natural and normal functions.
One of the things to keep in mind is that depression medications do not work instantly. They do work quickly, within a couple of days to weeks, but they will not give you an instant turn around. If you have been placed on depression medication, be sure to talk to your doctor about how long it will take to be effective and how to get off of your medications.
Some of them may cause a severe return of your depression or even worse side effects if you instantly stop the medications. Many medications require you to slowly withdrawal, so be sure to follow the advice of your physician.
How to Make Natural Antidepressants
Natural antidepressants are as real as nature. They come in the forms of food, exercise, herbs, Homeopathy, massage, and hundreds of other natural treatments. Many of these natural antidepressants are without side effects. But, you want to be very careful. There are a few natural antidepressants with side effects. We’re going to go over many techniques in a few recipes for you to try and also continue reading on!
How to Cure Depression Naturally
You’re diet and lifestyle contribute so much to depression. When you first recognize the symptoms of depression, the first thing you should do is change your diet to a healthy one, which we describe here. You should also include exercise and like we mentioned before, as much love and affection from your friends and family as possible.
Here’s the secret they don’t want to tell you: all natural foods contained antidepressant qualities. None of them act as antidepressants, but every single fruit and vegetable will contribute to keeping you happy and healthy.
The basic quality you want to look for is that your food to be on the whole, pure state. The further you go into processing, the less nutrition it has and the more it’s going to hurt your system. The natural antidepressant quality to whole foods is in the fact that they contain a tremendous amount of fragile antioxidants and phytonutrients. There are over ten thousand different types of phytonutrients and antioxidants and very few of them will survive the process of preservation to fit into a bag or a box.
If you are depressed, the foods that help the most with depression are the ones that you may not seek out. They are going to be the ones that are darker in color, a little bit more bitter in taste, and low in carbohydrates. In other words, any fruit or vegetable but potatoes.
As you structure your diet to bring more natural antidepressants into your life, seek out books that show you how to cook low-carb *. Many of those recipes are absolutely fabulous and taste wonderful. And, you may be introduced to new foods you’ve never tried before.
The biggest thing you want to pay attention to is bright and dark colors. The more color in a fruit or vegetable, the more antioxidants and vitamins will be found within it. The color itself is often produced by the different types of cyanins (for the color cyan, not cyanide).
Try These Foods – They are Real Natural Antidepressants:
They contain lots of lycopene, which is a huge benefit for your brain and for your heart.
The big boost of omega-3 fatty acids * help soothe the nerve endings and stimulate the production of healthy hormones, like serotonin and dopamine.
Fruits give you a natural boost of sugar, which makes you feel good, and one of the richest sources of antioxidants out there. All fruits are good, including bananas, which can give you a huge dose of potassium.
Dark chocolate is rich in antioxidants, especially various flavonoids that have been studied to help reduce cancer and other lifestyle diseases, and they have the added benefit of improving your mood.
Exercise for Depression
When you’re depressed, you just don’t feel like doing anything. But, research has shown that mild exercise can help reduce the symptoms of depression, and in some people can completely cure them.
Exercise naturally increases the level of endorphins in your body. These make you feel good physically. In addition, the endorphins in your body help stimulate and regulate the levels of serotonin and dopamine in your body. By increasing your levels endorphins, your body automatically increases the levels of all the other feel-good hormones.
Exercise can also reduce the levels of lactic acid and other waste products within the flesh of muscles. As you reduce these waste products, your muscles begin to feel stronger and easier to move. As your muscles feel better, your body begins to desire to move more often. As you move, the lymphatic fluid around your body help remove waste products and naturally balance levels of hormones in your body.
Psychologists are calling exercise a natural antidepressant. We recommend you try yoga for depression. It is a very gentle and ancient form of exercise. It allows your body to move, stretch, and begin the process of healing in one of the easiest and safest movement therapies out there. Yoga also focuses on deep breathing, which can increase your oxygen levels. As you increase your oxygen levels, your brain begins to work more efficiently and your thoughts clear.
Supplements for Depression
In many people with depression, your natural levels of vitamins go way down. Using some natural supplements to help depression can help reduce symptoms. You want to avoid high mega-doses, however. The antidepressant vitamins only work when they’re absorbed, and our body cannot absorb mega-doses.
Vitamin B Complex for Depression
All of the B vitamins are used in our brain to help stimulate neural connections, build new nerve connections, and use fuel efficiently. When we're low on are B vitamins, we get brain fog and depressed. A simple low dose B vitamin complex will help stimulate your brain to reduce the brain fog and work efficiently. Check out the article on brain fog over here.
Avoid vitamin B12 supplements, however. Our body needs a relatively small amount of this vitamin and if you eat meat, you are already getting enough B12. Despite marketing hype, vitamin B12 deficiency is rather rare.
Vitamin K for Depression
We’ve gotten several questions about vitamin K and its use for depression. Vitamin K is used throughout the body in low doses, it is not specifically used to treat depression. We don’t recommend a vitamin K supplement for depression because it can cause bleeding disorders. If you’re eating one serving of the green leafy vegetables per day, you’re getting all the vitamin K you need.
Vitamin E for Depression
While low levels of vitamin E are found in people with depression, it is uncertain yet whether the low levels of vitamin E have caused the depression or that depressed people are eating foods low in vitamin E. A low-dose supplement of vitamin E may help with your depression, but so will eating foods rich in this antioxidant, namely fresh fruits and vegetables.
D Vitamin for Depression
Of all of the vitamins you can take for depression, vitamin D is one of the best. Most people are lacking in this vitamin because so many people spend all of their time indoors. It is so simple and easy to get this vitamin, just been 15 minutes in the sun. Our body manufactures vitamin D very easily, and it is the only vitamin that we use at 100% bioavailability.
However, if you are like me and live in the North where we don’t get much sunlight in the winter, or in the South where you don’t get much sunlight in the summer, a supplement may help. Avoid high-dose supplements. A low dose supplement several times a day is far more effective than one mega dose.
Serotonin is deficient in almost everyone with depression. However, this is not a supplement you want to take without a doctor’s direction. Head over to this article on serotonin and we explain much better what this hormone does and how you can get it naturally.
Homeopathic Remedies Antidepressants
Homeopathy is the alternative medicine that is based on the principle that minute, microscopic doses of a poison will trigger the body into healing the poison, therefore healing the problem the Homeopathy treatment was given for. In many cases, the dosage of a homeopathic treatment is so low that it is undetectable with the equipment we have today. Often times, it is less than 1 part per 100 trillion and less.
It is this reason, the extreme dilution, that causes normal Medical Science to dismiss Homeopathy as a valid treatment. However, has been proven to work in people and animals. And since animals have no concept of taking a pill for a cure, the fact that animals heal when taking homeopathic remedies is a testament to its strength.
Fortunately, because of the incredibly low dosage, homeopathy rarely interact with any kind of medication.
Remedies for depression in homeopathy must match all of the symptoms a person is experiencing to one single homeopathic remedy. It is very difficult in an article like this to say which one will work. There are over a dozen different homeopathic remedies for depression depending on the type of depression and the symptoms of person is experiencing.
One natural homeopathic antidepressant is Staphysagria, for a person who is sensitive, quiet, and emotional. Another is Lachesis Muta which is appropriate when depression is caused by suspicion, jealously or repressed feelings.
Only a qualified homeopathic doctor can match your symptoms to the appropriate homeopathic remedy. Please do not attempt to try homeopathic remedies on your own, because they may not work. Only once you are matched to the appropriate remedy will you find relief.
Herbs are good for depression because they’re easy to take and they taste good. However, there are several herbs that are dangerous to take and others that you can eat like candy.
All food herbs are wonderful for you to take. Use them as part of your cooking and you get a tremendous amount of nutrition and antioxidant power without having to worry about dosing or swallowing pills. The natural antidepressant power of turmeric and saffron can liven up your cooking and work wonders for your health.
Oregano is another natural antidepressant you can use without worry. Fresh is best, but if dried is all you have to sprinkle it on. And don’t forget onion and garlic. These two vegetables/spices should be included in all your dishes. Not only do they help your digestion and help fight off colds and flu, but they provide your body with allicin compounds that helped return your body to a natural state of health.
St. John’s Wort * is another herb that is used to help fight depression. It is shown in several clinical studies to actually work well. Several studies have proven its anti-depressive power. In fact, there have been a few studies where St. John’s Wort has equal or better prescription medication. There is one caution you need to use. When paired with prescription medication, St. John’s Wort cancels out the medication and may make your depression worse. In addition, women who are pre-menopausal may find the supplement makes premenstrual issues unbearable.
Like we talked about earlier, being surrounded by love is one of the best cures for depression. Far too often, people isolate themselves when they have depression. Making the conscious choice to be open to love helps greatly.
There is a Buddhist technique called loving-kindness meditation. The sole purpose is to teach yourself to love unconditionally. Here’s how to start: choose something you already love, a pet, a child, your significant other, and take a few minutes to focus on all of the reasons you love that person and you wish for that person to be happy and healthy. Choose only one person or pet at a time. And give yourself a break in between each session.
At first, you may only be able to handle a few seconds of this meditation. As you continue, and you begin to love more and more, you’ll be able to expand this to your friends, extended family, neighbors, and the fullest extent of the Buddhist Meditation, the whole universe.
Remember, start small with just a few minutes and focus on someone you already love. Psychologists show that after a single session with loving kindness, your depression begins to reduce.
As an avid gardener, I find it amusing that people look for antidepressants plants. All plants are naturally anti-depressive. But, some are much more frustrating the other than others. If you want to plant, or if you’re thinking about getting someone with depression a plant, choose plants that are very easy to grow and can survive weeks without being watered. This will limit your choice to succulents, such as Christmas cactuses, aloes, philodendrons, and other easy plants.
The main reason to have plants around the houses because they give off significant quantities of oxygen. When our houses are shut up tight, the reduced oxygen depresses our emotions. This can make depressive tendencies worse. By increasing our oxygen levels, we increase our mood. Plus, having the responsibility of taking care of a plant could help somebody avoid suicidal thoughts.
Pet therapy is used in nursing homes and children’s wards more and more to help alleviate boredom and depression. Several studies have shown that the purr of a cat vibrates at a frequency that stimulates the release of serotonin into our system. It also increases healing and lowers an excited heart rate.
Dogs are typically used for pet therapy because they’re always happy to see you. While dogs don’t purr, there is none deniable fact that petting an animal, especially a dog helps reduce depression.
Many people feel having a pet reduces the chances of suicide because of the responsibilities. They don’t want to leave their pet to the wind when they leave the Earth. This is not a reason to get a person a pet, but it is a reason to help a person with depression. As a friend, we recommend you make sure that a person with depression and pets is taking care of their pets.
Finally, massage help stimulate the release of endorphins in the body. It also reduces tension and pain. Massage will not work after just one session, it is an on-going therapy that is used in conjunction with others that we have discussed here. One of the reasons massage works so well is that the person who’s depressed has the full concentration and loving touch from the massage therapist. This goes a long way to ease damaged emotions and helps open up the person who’s depressed to receiving. We recommend trying a good massage and making a part of a recovery program for anyone who’s depressed.
Other Conditions with Depression
Natural Remedies for Depression and Mood Swings
Many people experience light depression and mood swings. This is one of the easiest forms of depression to deal with. In this case, you want to pay attention to your diet. Going through the highs and lows of blood sugar can greatly affect your moods, with depression taking over every time your blood sugar goes low.
Be sure to supplement with vitamin D and magnesium * at low doses multiple times a day to make sure your levels remain consistent.
You can also add in herbal teas such as lemon balm and catnip, as well as doing low-dose supplementation of St. John’s Wort. Just be sure if you do the St. John’s Wort, that you are not taking out any other depression medications and women should skip taking the supplement one week prior to menstruation. Many of these are also natural remedies for bipolar issues. You just want to double-check with your doctor to make sure the herbal remedies will not interfere with your medications.
Remedies for Depression and Anger
If the depression is taking on a more angry tone, you will want to make sure of consistency in your life. Make sure the food choices you are making are at consistent times and maintain a consistent level of sugars and glucose on a day-to-day basis. Sugar lows trigger both depression and anger. There are several homeopathic remedies that work very well for treating anger with depression.
Herbally, lavender and rose work very well. Use the scents to help calm your mind. If you wish to drink tea, lemon balm has a very calming effect. If it is legal in your state, cannabis also works very well to help reduce bouts of anger.
Natural Antidepressants for Postnatal Depression
After a woman gives birth, her body goes through a tremendous series of changes. Many women may experience postpartum depression. Since anything woman ingests will be passed on to her baby via breast milk, you want to be very careful with natural antidepressants with breastfeeding.
Fortunately, homeopathic medications and herbal medicine work exceptionally well without endangering the newborn baby. Calendula is a very calming and gentle tea for postpartum depression. However, calendula should not be used while breastfeeding. Milk thistle supplements can also help encourage the production of milk, which will automatically stimulate other hormones that combat depression.
A sitz bath with Epsom salts *, magnesium sulfate, also helps reduce pain and promotes healing of the whole body. While you have to seek out a specially trained massage therapist, pregnancy and post-natal massage are both natural treatments safe for breastfeeding women and those who have just given birth.
Natural Antidepressants for Pain
When it comes to pain, it can cause a tremendous amount of other symptoms in the whole body. Depending on your level of pain, you may want to go straight to prescription medications. But, dependency on these medications could have long-term effects.
One of the best natural treatments for pain is massage and yoga. It helps stimulate the body into healing itself rather than depending on outside sources for comfort. Some Homeopathy may help, but we regret to say that in the herbal World, there is very little to combat severe pain.
Natural Antidepressants for Fibromyalgia
Autoimmune issues are not easy to work with. Many of the natural remedies are more symptomatic treatments for other than actual adjustments to the way the body works. If you have been diagnosed with fibromyalgia or other autoimmune condition, you want to make sure that your doctor is working with you to make sure that your immune system is not for their harming your body.
There are many different herbal medicines and Homeopathy treatments that work well for autoimmune issues. However, to make sure they are balanced and not interfering with any other medications, you need to work with herbalist or homeopathic doctor for this issue. This is not a time to experiment with your body. The medications used to suppress the immune system and stop damage to your body are too vital to play around with.
Natural Antidepressants for PMS
Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is a condition caused by the sudden fluctuation in hormones and the sudden bleeding from the uterus. One of the best ways to avoid PMS as the use of Dandelion. Drinking dandelion root tea and eating dandelion leaves provide the body with near-perfect nutrition to help combat the altering hormones. Teas made from Vitex * and Angelica * also work very well.
If you are nervous with your PMS, catnip helps greatly. In the weeks before experiencing your period, it is also good to supplement with evening primrose oil *. This helps simulate a slower change in the hormones so you don’t experience the wild mood swings. Some women also gain great relief with a massage of the lower back and hip area just prior to menstruation.
Natural Antidepressants for Clinical Depression
If you were experiencing clinical depression, and it is quite severe, you will want to work with your doctor to make sure anything you take naturally will not interfere with medication. Natural antidepressants for major depression don’t work nearly as well as for mild depression. While many remedies may help, it is better to come out of the depression with medication and then allow natural remedies to take over than it is to suffer a long period of time.
Natural Antidepressants for Anxiety
Anxiety is a fairly common symptom that is linked with depression. In this, St. John’s Wort is one of the best herbal medicines and herbal supplements you can use.
If you are looking for simple teas, seek out chamomile * and catnip teas because they are very calming. If you feel your heart racing, lemon balm can help calm a racing heart. For people who have anger and nervousness issues, along with sleep problems, valerian supplements * can help calm the body. Homeopathic medicine offers some great relief as does life coaching and hypnotherapy.
Natural Antidepressants for Menopause
Menopause is a difficult time in a woman’s life. As the ovaries begin to shut down their hormone production, the body needs to adjust systematically. It can be a very confusing couple of years while the body learns new paths for hormones. This is a perfect time to focus on herbal medicines and Homeopathy. Fortunately, both of these disciplines use the same herbs to help women.
Marshmallow help soothe inflamed tissues and increase vaginal lubrication. Eating asparagus helps restore hydration to the whole body, including the skin. Borage makes a wonderful addition to salads and any herbal salve with calendula helps reduce fibroids in the body.
Eating sage and dandelion can help restore a lot of nutrients to the body. And one of the best herbs herbalist tend to recommend for menopause is Vitex. This can be found as a supplement * and homeopathic treatment.
This is one condition that St. John’s Wort may not help as well. Since estrogen in the body is fluctuating, you may experience symptoms similar to bipolar issues.
Natural Antidepressants that Cause Weight Loss
One of the best things about using natural antidepressants as they are all natural. If you are adjusting your diet in order to help reduce your depression, you will naturally be cutting out some of the worst foods that cause you to gain weight. This includes processed foods, high sugar foods, grains, and cereals. Simply cutting these out of your diet can help you lose weight.
If you’ve taken some of the advice here and drink herbal teas rather than sodas, your body thank you for losing weight. But, don’t expect the natural antidepressants to cause you to lose weight by themselves. Healthy weight loss is done by systematically eating a healthy diet, exercising, and being surrounded by your loved ones.
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