Depression is a serious mood disorder with symptoms that range from mild to debilitating and potentially life-threatening. Some people look to manage depression with herbal remedies, rather than with medication a doctor prescribes. Medications and counseling are conventional ways to alleviate the symptoms of depression. However, some herbs and supplements may also help.
In this article, we look at the common herbs and supplements with links to the treatment of depression and discuss their safety and effectiveness.
1. Omega-3 Fatty Acids
If I had to choose two supplements that make the most difference, I would vote my omega-3 capsules and the probiotic that I take. Don’t skimp on those. I spend the big bucks on a quality brand of fish oil, OmegaBrite, because their capsules contain 70 percent EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) in a 7:1 ratio of EPA to DHA (docosahexaenoic acid).
New research has confirmed the positive effects of EPA on mood, even more so than DHA, as it provides a natural balance to omega-6 arachidonic acid. I noticed a definite difference in switching from a brand of mostly DHA to mostly EPA. Nordic Naturals is also a reliable brand.
As I’ve mentioned in places, I mix a very expensive powder, Probiotic 22 (by Orthomolecular Products) with either water or a green smoothie before I eat anything in the morning. It is crucial to keep your intestines in good shape because your brain is only as healthy as your gut. The nerve cells in our gut manufacture 80 to 90 percent of our body’s serotonin, the neurotransmitter we need to stay sane.