Natural Remedies for Occasional Depression
by Aleta Idol
Most people experience occasional shifts in mood, and it’s not uncommon to fall into bouts of depression for no clear reason. Symptoms include sleeping more than usual, feeling sad, bored or listless, or experiencing a feeling of disconnectedness from your body. Additional feelings of hopelessness, despair or exhaustion can occur as well.
If you’ve found yourself falling into a funk, several things could be responsible, from chemical imbalances in your brain to vitamin deficiencies, air ionization and EMF radiation.
Fortunately, there are a few natural remedies for occasional depression that can help reverse or control the symptoms of mild depression, and these natural treatments can save you money while helping to boost your mood:
Get a Proper Sleep Schedule
People with depression often experience hypersomnia, or excessive amounts of sleep. When you’re depressed, you may feel tired all the time, no matter how long you sleep. Worse, sleeping in late can make it difficult to get to bed on time, which contributes to your tiredness.
What’s important to realize is that sleeping too much can actually feed your depression, causing symptoms to worsen. Sleeping too much can also throw the rest of your schedule off-kilter, leaving you less room for work, chores or relaxation.
When you feel tired, instead of succumbing to the urge to nap, try 10 minutes of brisk exercise instead.
It’s a very easy natural remedy for occasional depression through which you may find yourself feeling surprisingly energized, and it will be easier to sleep at night if you’re staying active throughout the day.
Watch What You’re Eating
Traditional “comfort foods” are usually high in starch and fat but low in essential nutrients. While they’ll make you feel better in the short term, these foods will leave you feeling worse in the long run. Focus instead on nutrient-dense foods, especially those heavy in vitamin B6, which plays a role in mood regulation. Some of the best options are avocadoes, legumes and dark leafy greens. For a maximum dose of energizing vitamins, try juicing your greens.
It’s also important to avoid stimulants like caffeine, chocolate and nicotine. These can create an artificial “high,” but your overall mood will be suppressed as your body goes into withdrawal.
And though an occasional glass of wine has some documented health benefits, it might be best to skip the alcohol until your depression symptoms have cleared.
Check the EMF levels in your Home
The effect of electromagnetic fields on the human body is currently being studied, but so far it seems clear that EMF radiation can play a significant role in immune response and mood fluctuations. All electronic devices emit EMFs, but some of the biggest culprits are wireless routers, smart phones and any other wireless-compatible devices.
If you do have a lot of electronic devices in your home, you can offset their effects with a Home EMF Protection System which will neutralize the effects of the electromagnetic field. Cutting down your reliance on electronic devices in general can also help reduce your depression symptoms, so consider trimming down your screen time in front of computers or televisions to see if it helps.
Keep an Eye on the Weather
You may discover that your mood is tightly linked to weather patterns. People with Seasonal Affect Disorder (SAD) experience depressive episodes during the winter due largely to lack of sunlight. Exposure to bright light, especially natural sun, can boost your mood and reduce depression symptoms.
And it may sound surprising, but another major factor in mood is wind. While not everyone is affected by the wind, some people experience anxiety, depression or irritation on windy days. This is caused by the positive ionization of the air, which disrupts your body’s natural processes. If this is an issue for you, it may be worth buying an ionizer for your home or office to neutralize this issue.
Try herbal remedies
Before resorting to pharmaceuticals to treat your mild or occasional depression, consider giving natural herbal remedies a chance. One of the best for depression is St. John’s Wort, which is effective against depression, anxiety and insomnia. Valerian root is another option for soothing anxiety, especially when served in tea, and the two herbs can be taken in tandem for maximum effect.
The omega-3 fatty acids in fish can also boost serotonin levels.
If you have trouble getting enough fish in your regular diet, a fish oil capsule can certainly help.
Depression can become serious and debilitating, and if you experience symptoms longer than a week or two, you may need professional help.
If your depression doesn’t resolve itself or if your symptoms worsen, be sure to seek the assistance of a qualified psychiatrist for further guidance.
(Aleta is a health writer, formal dental hygienist and holistic therapist practicing in Dorset, South UK. Favoring proven, natural treatments to common ailments, she has a keen interest in phytotherapy and works as a research assistant for the team at EarthCalm.com.)