This post will be very similar to my post about tending to your own anxiety. Although they feel very different, anxiety and depression have similar roots, and much of what helps for anxiety can also help with depression. There are some depression-specific tools that I’ll include, below. Let’s start with nutrition.
You are what you eat. You really, truly, are. A fast-food dinner isn’t likely to send you into a depressed episode. But a fast-food dinner, night after night, is sure to weigh you down, physically and mentally. We simply are not meant to ingest anything that’s not food. So when we do, our body has to work extra hard at figuring out what to do with this ‘not-food’ food. Anything that’s taxing on our bodies is, well, taxing on our bodies. We put our systems in overload and no one can survive on overload for long before they crash. When we feed our body with real food, we function better on all levels.
Some people with depression are low in vitamin B’s (B12- cobalamin, B9-folate/folic acid), vitamin D and omega-3’s (EPA/DHA). A simple blood test at your doctors office can rule these out, or give you the key to feeling better.
Other subsistence such as St. John’s wort, 5-HTP, saffron, passionflower, caffeine, CBD oil and kava (among a slew of other things) have all been suggested as providing relief. This Healthline article names several research studies done on these supplements.
Probiotics are also a good way to help your body balance out. It’s been shown so much of our emotion is tied to our gut. Many of us walk around with an unbalanced gut flora which may lead to a low mood. Help grow new, healthy flora with probiotics.
More info on supplements
Here’s an interesting list of supplements and vitamins WebMD published as
“common natural remedies used to treat or reduce the symptoms of Depression”. Check it out, here > WebMD: Vitamin and Supplement Center.
For more information on vitamins, minerals and western supplements, talk with our chiropractors. They are well-versed in this area and would be happy to help find the supplement regiment or change in diet right for you.
Books have been my saving grace out of many depressed, anxious, life-spiraling-out-of-control moments. Learning to walk in the dark and The Power of Now are my favorites. For my full list of books and videos to help you understand your own battle, click here > Depression Part 1: What is it?
Motion equals emotion. We are made to move. When all we do is sit…on our way to work, at work, during lunch, on our way home, during dinner, watching tv…we slowly fade away. I wrote about this in Depression Part 2:
“What does a depressed person look like? Do they talk fast or slow? Is there head up or down? Are they breathing deep or shallow? Do they talk loud or quiet? Do they move slow or fast? Hands down, 99% of you answered slow, down, shallow, quiet and slow. That’s because, as humans, we all exhibit similar motions for the emotions we are feeling. Change up your motion and you change your emotion. Tony Robins explains this best. Watch here > Tony Robbins | On Physiology”.
I took this portion right out of my Anxiety Part 4 post:
Meditate, yoga, dance, deep breathing, acupuncture, massage. Get yourself alone in a room where you can simply be…and listen. So much of our lives are spent “doing”. We get tired, we hurt and we’re cranky so we gulp down coffee and keep going, instead of asking our bodies, “Why are you tired? Why do you hurt? How can I help you?” Our bodies are talking to us all the time. Listen.
There’s no way around it; emotional pain is painful. Especially the hopeless kind. I believe the more we talk about it, the better we will heal, as a whole. The more we look inward, listen to our bodies, ask questions and face the pain rather than run from it, the more we will understand that it’s all here to teach us a lesson and help us grow into the beautiful souls we are all meant to be.
Continue to read blogs such as this, continue to talk with others about your pain and theirs, continue to reach out and stay curious. One foot in front of the other.
I’ll end this topic of the month the same way I started:
“It’s an emotion that is there for a reason…not because we are broken or bad or helpless and need fixing. Depression, like any other hard to deal with feeling, is our nervous systems way of communicating with us that something is off. If we don’t listen, there will be hell to pay. However, if we can learn to recognize the subtle cues before it gets out of control, we can use depression to guide us towards health.”
To health, my friends!
See you next time,
Rachel the acupuncturist
If you need immediate assistance, call the Suicide Prevention Hotline or Mental Health Hotline for free, confidential, 24 hr safe support. You can also reach out to us, to a friend or family member, to a therapist or a support group (NAMI, Open Door).