November 17, 2018 by: Ralph Flores
News) For a condition that affects over 16 million people in the U.S. every
year, there’s still a lot that we don’t know about depression. In
particular, some people equate extreme sadness to depression. This is
not only an oversimplification, it’s also misleading as depression is much
more nuanced and complex than simple unhappiness.
it’s the belief that taking antidepressants could reduce depressive
symptoms which causes concern. Studies have shown that using these drugs
can lead to a range of physical, emotional, and psychological side
of the more serious side effects of taking antidepressants is increased
thoughts of suicide. However, it’s not just high-risk people that are
affected by it: Even those without mood disorders harbor suicidal thoughts
after taking antidepressants. In the U.K., a group of people who have
taken such drugs appeared before Parliament to talk about the adverse
effects, including suicidal thoughts, seizures, and other health issues.
the herb that’s right for you…
there are herbal supplements that are proven effective against depression
— without the adverse effects. If you’re already taking prescription drugs
for depression, consult with your healthcare provider before changing your
medication. (h/t to BeBrainFit.com)
- Arctic root (Rhodiola rosea):
This adaptogen — a term used for natural substances that combat stress —
is native to cold regions, such as the Arctic or the mountainous regions
of central China. It works by increasing the production
of serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine, all of which impact a
person’s mood. It can also improve depressive symptoms better
than antidepressants, making it great for people whose depression is
caused by seasonal affective disorder or those with accompanying fatigue
- Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera): Ashwagandha
is regarded as one of the most important herbs in Ayurvedic medicine.
It’s sought after these days because of its ability to effectively
reduce the effects of the stress hormone cortisol. It’s also an
adaptogen, and it’s great for people with depressive symptoms such as
stress, anxiety, and insomnia.
- Chamomile (Matricaria
recutita/Chamaemelum nobile): Popular as a tea, chamomile can benefit
people who suffer from depression and anxiety. Aside from tea, it can be
taken as a supplement or applied topically as an essential oil.
- Gingko (Ginkgo biloba): This herb
has gone a long way, from being used in traditional Chinese medicine to
being one of the most well-known supplements around the world. People
first used it to improve their memory; however, recent studies have
shown that it can be used to increase blood flow and improve the
efficacy of mood-elevators like dopamine and serotonin. It’s also an
effective adaptogen for lowering stress levels.
- Saffron (Crocus sativus): Real saffron is
one of the most expensive spices in the world, mainly because of the
challenges in harvesting it. However, studies have shown that it’s as
good an antidepressant as Prozac.
- Turmeric (Curcuma longa): Curcumin,
the active ingredient in this well-known Indian spice, isn’t just
for reducing inflammation. It can improve brain function by boosting
serotonin and dopamine, which are the body’s “feel-good”
neurotransmitters. According to research, its effects are comparable to
the popular antidepressant Prozac, making it especially useful for
people with obsessive-compulsive disorder and major depressive disorder.
One advantage that turmeric has over other herbal supplements for
depression is that using it with prescription drugs enhances its
use some with caution
many herbal treatments are beneficial for managing and treating
depression, but there are some herbs that can make it worse. Here are two
of the top offenders:
- St. John’s wort (Hypericum
perforatum) — This herb is popular for treating mild and
moderate depression, but it’s equally known for its side effects and
negative interactions. For one, people who are under any medication
should seek medical advice before taking St. John’s wort, as it has
known interactions with more than 800 medications. It’s also a bad idea
to take this herb with antidepressants since it causes a
life-threatening reaction called serotonin syndrome. Studies have shown
that taking St. John’s wort can result in similar complications as that
- 5-HTP — This popular supplement
for treating depression boosts serotonin levels — while reducing other
neurotransmitters in the process. It also doesn’t play well with other
herbal treatments, as it can lead to more health problems.
is a condition that disproportionately burdens its sufferers, and
using synthetic drugs only adds more to that burden. Using natural
supplements is a safe and effective way to manage depression,
without the unpleasant side effects.