Depression can make you feel helpless, and it doesn’t help when conventional treatment options sometimes appear confusing and expensive. In this blog post, we are going to give you six simple remedies to help alleviate symptoms of depression.
It is important to note that these are not meant to replace or serve as a substitute for medication or therapy. Nonetheless, if you are struggling with depression and want a more non-conventional treatment, these are some remedies that are accessible, natural, and relatively inexpensive.
1. St. John’s Wort
According to research studies, taking St. John’s Wort has been associated with an increase in serotonin in the brain. Serotonin is a feel-good chemical in the brain that people with depression are often low in. Many antidepressants work by increasing serotonin levels in the brain.
Note: Please take caution in taking St. John’s Wort as it has been known for interacting with many medications. Always check that any supplements and/or remedies you choose to introduce to your body are compatible with your current routine.
According to Healthline, SAM-e, short for S-adenosylmethionine, is a “supplement…designed to act as a synthetic form of the body’s natural mood-boosting chemicals.”
Note: If taken too frequently, SAM-e should not be taken in conjunction with antidepressants. SAM-e is also known for minor gastrointestinal side effects.
Low levels of Zinc in the bloodstream have been linked to depression according to a Science Daily analysis. Per a PubMed article, taking a 25-milligram zinc supplement daily might help reduce depression symptoms.
4. Omega-3 fatty acids
Long known for their expansive health benefits, Omega-3 fatty acids have also recently been shown to be a chemical compound lower in concentration in patients with depression.
You should aim to get your Omega-3 fatty acids from food rather than a supplement form, but a supplement like fish oil might also help reduce symptoms in patients struggling with depression.
Note: You should aim to get a higher ratio of DHA to ERA, both of which are fatty acids.
5-HTP, short for 5-hydroxytryptophan, may help increase serotonin levels in the brain, one of the goals of many antidepressants. A small number of studies show that taking 5-HTP might help alleviate some symptoms of depression.
5-Dehydroepiandrosterone, or DHEA for short, is a hormone that is naturally produced by the adrenal glands. A small collection of studies shows a potential correlation between DHEA and symptom relief for people with PTSD, depression, and anxiety.
Note: According to Medical News Today, DHEA may cause many side effects. It may interact with a wide range of drugs, increase the risk of certain types of cancer, change blood sugar, affect menstruation and fertility, and cause bleeding. Other treatments are less risky.
It’s important to note that before trying any of these natural remedies for depression, you should consult with your doctor. Many of these have only been recently studied for their correlation to symptom relief, and the evidence to support their success is limited. Furthermore, natural supplements are not regulated by the FDA and their side effects are not put under the same scrutiny as prescription medication.
None of these supplements should be used as a formal replacement for medication or other forms of treatment. We do understand, however, it’s important to have options that if you’re struggling with depression, and so we hope you enjoyed this blog post on what some of those options might be. Just to reiterate — take caution, be wise, and always speak with a doctor. We hope you find a treatment plan that works best for you!
Check out our sister article on 7 natural remedies for anxiety!