You are depressed. You’ve tried the prescription medications designed to raise the “feel good” chemicals in your brain. Maybe you’ve had a little success or you don’t like the medication’s side effects.
Don’t give up hope. There are a plethora of natural ways to treat depression.
1. You Need A Routine
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One day melts into the next as you sit on your sofa staring at the TV. You need a routine.
Setting a daily schedule, even if it starts with something as simple as giving yourself a bedtime and a time to get up each day, will help you get back on track.
2. Set Goals – Start Small And Work Up
It feels like you can’t do anything.
That’s not true. It’s your depression talking. Don’t listen to it. Set daily goals for yourself.
Start small and make it something you can easily accomplish. You can jump into the deep end of the pool as you start to feel better.
3. Get Moving
Exercise makes your brain release feel-good chemicals called endorphins, and regular exercise seems to rewire the brain in positive ways.
You don’t need to run marathons to get the benefits, but you do need regular exercise.
Walk a few days a week, and gain a natural anti-depressant.
4. There is No Magic Diet
There isn’t a “depression diet,” but healthy eating makes you feel better overall and can reduce weight.
Additionally, keeping your blood sugar stable will reduce mood swings.
Hangry, anyone? There are specific foods you can eat for the natural supplements they contain. Read on to find out what they are.
5. Natural Supplements
Research shows salmon and tuna (omega-3 fatty acids) and spinach and avocado (folic acid) could ease depression symptoms.
St. John’s Wort is believed to increase serotonin in the brain, and saffron has been shown to treat mild depression.
SAM-e is a supplement designed to act like a synthetic form of the body’s natural mood-boosting chemicals.
Check with your doctor before you begin any new supplements.
6. Make The Most Of Your TIme
Get up and get out of the house. Depression steals your desire to have a life.Don’t let it.
Work full-time, part-time, or volunteer your time to give yourself and someone else a boost.
It can be tough to do something positive when you feel so negative, but there are ways to combat that. Check out the next slide to see another one.
7. Challenge Negative Thinking
There’s no doubt depressed minds leap to negative conclusions.
To fight depression, a lot of the work is mental. Challenge your negative thinking with logic.
You might feel like you’re the most worthless person on Earth. Is that really likely?
Take this as an exercise for your mind just like you would exercise your body. Practice it every day.
8. Find A New Hobby
It’s time to get out of the rut you’re in and do something different.
Find a new hobby. Go to a museum. Buy a used book or go to the library and check one out for free, then sit on a quiet park bench and read it.
Volunteer at a pet shelter. Take a class on something you’ve never learned about before.
9. Have Fun (We Know It’s Harder Than It Sounds)
Try to have fun. That sounds simple, but when you have depression nothing seems fun anymore.
You have to keep trying.
Make time for things you used to enjoy.
We all know that might be a tough directive, but the next one is much easier. Read on to find out.
10. Meditate And Let it Go
Go somewhere quiet and turn off your phone. If you’re out in nature, get away from people.
If you’re in your home, close the door. Put on some soothing music, and close your eyes.
Let go of your thoughts. Don’t think about not thinking.
Instead, focus on your breathing. It takes practice, but the soothing effects of meditation are worth it.
11. Kick The Caffeine And Add Water
Regular sleep is a must if you’re depressed, and we all know there is a link between caffeine intake and a lack of sleep.
Caffeine also has been shown to increase anxiety which is known to frequently occur in conjunction with depression.
Drink water instead. If you exercise, increase your intake that much more.
12. Get Some Sun
Seasonal Affective Disorder is a type of depression that occurs in the fall and winter when there are fewer daylight hours.
The lower exposure to sunlight saps your energy and makes you moody. To combat the blues, expose yourself to as much sunlight as possible.
If you live where the sun doesn’t shine much, look into therapeutic light boxes.
13. Check Your Hormones
Ask your doctor to check your thyroid and adrenal levels as well as your estrogen or testosterone levels.
When your hormones are out of whack, your mood can be seriously affected.
There’s one more professional to see, but it might not be who you think. Read on to find out.
14. Eastern Medicine Might Help
Acupuncture, the traditional Chinese practice where a practitioner inserts needles into particular points of the body, is becoming increasingly mainstream in the U.S. as a treatment for a variety of ailments.
Western research suggests the needles may trick the body’s natural painkillers into working.
It’s a growing alternative to antidepressants.
15. Get Back To Nature
The natural antidepressant is nature.
Humans evolved to live outside, but have migrated into brick and mortar caves over the last thousand years.
The sun makes our bodies produce Vitamin D. If you can’t spend all your days outside, at least add a few plants to your home and office.