The response from last week’s blog “A Mom’s Story About Battling Depression” was positively overwhelming. The amount of emails, comments, and direct messages we received showed us how important this topic is and how many people’s lives are impacted by depression. And this got us to thinking. Is there anything we could do to try and help people dealing with this?
As a natural holistic natural company, we wondered if there was any science behind what can cause depression, and if there was anything you can do to naturally fight this disorder. Maybe there is a link between lifestyle choices and deficiencies and depression. Please note, we are not doctors, so we always recommend you speak with your doctor(s) about anything relating to your health.
Personally, we know from firsthand experience how vitamin and mineral deficiencies can wreak havoc on our mood, energy levels, and overall health. After visiting our osteopathic doctor, talking through our current life situation (3 young kids and a lot of working!), and taking a few tests, he recommended making a few positive changes to our lifestyle and adding some vitamin and mineral supplements to address deficiencies. Within a few weeks we began to feel the difference and looking back now we know it completely changed our lives. While we are aware that each person is different, and what works for one doesn’t mean it will work for another. But it would be amazing if there was a way to help even just one other person!
Having said this, this is what we found
There is evidence and a belief within the natural holistic health community that lifestyle and vitamin and mineral deficiencies are linked to depression. Stress, diet, sleep, age, exercise, and sun exposure are all linked to depression. Additionally, there is a link between these factors and your vitamin and mineral needs. And the amazing thing is that the natural holistic community believes that depression can be managed through healthy lifestyle changes and addressing your personal vitamin and mineral needs. If you are interested in the facts and science behind these statements, please read below.
Here are a few facts about depression
- Depression is more prevalent in women than in men, but it impacts both genders
- Major Depressive Disorder (aka MDD) is what most people refer to as depression. It impacts 6-8% of American with a median age of 32.5 years old.
- The two most common causes of depression are:
- Seasonal Depression: affects 5% of the population in Fall & Winter months
- Postpartum Depression: 10-15% of new mothers develop MDD and 80% of new moms get what is called the “Baby Blues” which is a mild, short-term form of MDD that only lasts a few weeks.
So is there anything you can do to naturally and holistically treat depression or prevent it from coming on in the first place? Here is what some leading experts have to say. Their full articles are referenced below.
Five Natural Ways to Fight Depression
Sun Exposure: direct sun exposure on 40% of your body for 15-20 per day helps with a whole host of health functions; including helping prevent depression. If this is not possible, then here are two alternatives:
- Sun light tanning beds – be careful and do your research to find a tanning bed with the correct ratio or UV-A & UV-B rays for the best results.
- Take in tandem: Vit-D3, Magnesium, and K2. All 3 are needed to work properly.
- Exercise Regularly: exercise releases mood enhancing hormones, promotes better health, and can become a great source of community and belonging if you choose a gym with a strong network of people. I have personally developed strong and amazing friendships with the trainers and members of our gym!
- Eat Healthy: eating healthy makes your body function better all around, but a healthy diet is rich in Omega-3’s and natural Probiotics. If you are still feeling like you are coming up short on these then look for high quality supplements.
- Sleep: aim to get 7-9 hours of restful sleep every night to fight off depression.
Supplements: these supplements have research linking them to helping fight depression
- Vitamin D3
- Vitamin K
- 5-HTP (5-Hydroxytryptophan)
- Vitamin B Complex (B-6 & B-12)
- Amino Acids (we have 3 great flavors of Rejuvenating Aminos)
- Iodine & Selenium
Depression is a serious and devastating disorder that many suffer with silently. This should not be the case, and you should never feel ashamed if you have depression. We are here for you. We hope the information above helps more people understand what depression is, some of the leading types and causes, and hopefully the natural, holistic treatments help. Please let us know if you have tried any of these natural, holistic treatments and if you have had any success.