Wednesday , 21 February 2018

8 Natural Mood Boosters

Natural mood-boosters aren’t a replacement for seeing a doctor if you’re depressed, but may be the first line of defense when you’re feeling blue.
If you’ve been feeling down lately, you’re not alone. The Anxiety and Depression Association of America reports that almost 7 percent of Americans suffer from major depressive disorder yearly. Even if you’re not diagnosed with depression but are feeling blue more than usual, natural mood boosters may help.
1. Zinc
Getting plenty of zinc in your diet appears to help prevent depression — and may be an effective treatment as well, according to a 2010 review published in Current Opinion in Clinical Nutrition and Metabolic Care
. Authors of this review say that zinc deficiency induces depression, and zinc supplementation may improve the effectiveness of antidepressant drugs. Always check with your doctor before taking zinc supplements. Zinc-rich foods include oysters, seafood, beef, pork, legumes, milk, yogurt, nuts, and zinc-fortified breakfast cereals.
2. Vitamin D/Sunshine
A 2011 review in Issues in Mental Health Nursing reports that there is a link between vitamin D deficiency and depression — and that vitamin D supplementation may be a simple, cost-effective way to help prevent and treat depression. Being in sunlight is one way to get your daily dose of vitamin D. Vitamin D-rich foods include fish, milk, yogurt, egg yolks, vitamin D-fortified orange juice, and vitamin D-fortified breakfast cereal.
3. Exercise/Yoga
Regular exercise is a must when you’re feeling blue. A 2013 review in ACSMs Health and Fitness Journal found that exercise improves depressive symptoms and appears to be an effective treatment for depression, but the optimal amount needed isn’t known. Regardless of how much you work out or which type of workout you choose, the key is to do it regularly. Numerous studies have found that yoga is particularly beneficial for people with depression. Exercising outdoors in sunlight is an excellent way to knock out your workout and get a daily dose of mood-enhancing sunshine.
4. Sleep
Sleep is another natural mood booster. A 2015 review in Sultan Qaboos University Medical Journal found that chronic sleep deprivation may lead to depression due to neurochemical changes that can happen in the brain, and rates of short sleep duration and depressive symptoms are both on the rise. Sleep disturbances may also be a result of depression. The
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
(CDC) suggest adults get 7 to 8 hours of sleep nightly.
5. Omega-3s
Of all nutrients that have been studied for treating depression, omega-3 fatty acids appear to be the most effective, according to a 2014 review in Depression and Anxiety . A review published in 2013 in
Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment also reports that omega-3s help with depression, and taking 2 to 3 grams of omega-3s daily may help people with bipolar disorder. Omega-3 fatty acids are widely available in supplement form and are abundant in fatty fish like salmon and tuna.
6. St. John’s Wart
While not a treatment for severe depression, Mayo Clinic suggests that taking St. John’s wort, an herbal supplement, appears to be effective for mild- to moderate- depressive symptoms. The 2013 review in
Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment also reports that St. John’s wort seems to alleviate depression in men and women. However, talk to your doctor before taking herbal supplements.
7. Rhodiola rosea
Rhodiola rosea, another herbal supplement, seems to help treat people with mild to moderate depression in doses of 340 to 680 milligrams per day, according to a 2007 study published in the Nordic Journal of Psychiatry . The 2013 review in Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment confirms that Rhodiola rosea is beneficial for treating mild to moderate depression, but should be used with caution in women with a history of breast cancer.
8. S-Adenosylmethionine
A naturally-occurring compound found in the body, S-Adenosylmethionine (SAMe) helps break down brain chemicals serotonin, dopamine, and melatonin. Taking S-Adenosylmethionine in doses of 800 to 1,600 milligrams daily appears to help with mild to moderate depression, and may be just as effective as antidepressant medications without the side effects, according to the
University of Maryland Medical Cente r (UMMC). However, UMMC notes that SAMe isn’t for people with bipolar disorder, and shouldn’t be combined with other antidepressants unless given the okay from a doctor.

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