Depression or “depressive reactions” is a mood response that is often brought on by the stresses and strains in our lives. For some, it can be triggered by a serious loss, a difficult relationship, financial problems or any overwhelmingly stressful situation. For others it may be set off by medical conditions, drug or alcohol abuse or hormonal changes. In recent years, it has been noted that certain forms of depression can actually run in families.

Far more common than you may think, one in five women and one in ten men can expect to experience some form of depression in their lives. Depression can influence every aspect of your life. Although the cause of depression is unknown, depression can leave you feeling sad, irritable, indecisive, pessimistic, hopeless or empty. Sufferers can also experience insomnia, fatigue, memory loss, restlessness, anxiety and even rapid weight gain or loss.

Today, many people are aware of the drug therapy that is available for depression. This includes pharmaceuticals such as Zoloft, Paxil, Wellbutrin, and Prozac. These drugs, while helping to eliminate the depression, can cause emotional “flatness”. Instead of coming to terms with the underlying causes of their depression these medications suppress it.

Fortunately, there are a number of natural therapies, which can help you manage mild to moderate depression. If you are currently on anti-depressive drug therapy, it is important to work with your primary care provider before incorporating these recommendations into your life.

Recommendations For Wellness

Exercise! Regular physical activity has been shown to release endorphins, the feel good chemicals in the body. It can also help to reduce stress and build self-esteem.

Meditate! Meditation and other relaxation techniques work to calm the mind and help to reduce stress, muscle tension and anxiety. It can also promote emotional health and balance.

Many forms of psychotherapy have been shown to help depressed individuals by helping them gain insight into and resolve their problems.

Avoid alcohol, sedatives and antihistamines, as well as substances that can alter ones mood such as caffeine and nicotine.

Increase consumption of omega-3 fatty acids such as found in salmon.

St. John’s Wort has been used for years to treat depression. Please note it may take up to 2 months to notice its effects.

SAMe is an essential amino acid that helps the body manufacture certain neurotransmitters, which promote the feelings of well-being.

5-HTP is a precursor to seratonin. Low seratonin levels have been linked to feeling “down”.

B-vitamins have also been shown help to protect against depression. It is best to take a B-complex that contains folic acid.

Never stop taking an antidepressant without consulting the doctor for instructions on how to safely discontinue the medication.

Author's Bio: 

Dr. Rita Louise, Ph.D. is a Naturopathic Physician and a 20-year veteran in the Human Potential Field, but it is her unique gift as a medical intuitive that illuminates and enlivens her work. A graduate of the Berkeley Psychic Institute and author of the book “The Power Within: A Psychic Healing Primer, Dr. Louise is a naturopathic physician, medical intuitive, mind/body healer, herbalist and spiritual counselor. To schedule a session with Dr. Louise, contact her at (972) 475-3393 or visit her web page at