We've all heard how much money Americans spend on anti-depressants every year, and how much of them wind up in our water supply.
What a boon to the Earth and to humanity for a natural, non-toxic substance to be found just as effective in the treatment of this condition. The fantastic news is that we may have stumbled on just such a discovery.
It thrills me that the very foods and anti-oxidants we've been talking about here for months are the very same ones that can help re-balance brain chemistry and address the very real symptoms of depression.
After my mother's onset of dementia, I became clinically depressed. She lived with us, and my children were 10 and 1 at the time. I worked full-time, so the lovely nanny we hired to care for my 1-year-old watched mom for a few hours, and my sister would come take her for a couple of hours.
Her situation worsened, so that it became a full-time job keeping track of what she was doing. More than once she would unlock the baby-proofed cabinets and give my 1-year-old spray bottles to play with... glass cleaner, bleach, 409, you name it. A couple of times he'd run around the house clutching something he found on the floor, and it would be one of her blood thinners that she dropped. It was also a time when my marriage was a little strained. The stress caused my depression.
I was put on Wellbutrin, which messed with my brain in very unhealthy ways. I couldn't think clearly, I could no longer multitask or plan meals or appointments for the next few days. I got off the meds and tried St. John's Wort. My MD said it was not safe for my son to have Mom live with us, and was causing me too much stress, so my older sister who worked part time and whose children were much older, converted her garage to an apartment for Mom.
Based on my experience I would not recommend prescription drugs to anyone, unless they had exhausted other methods of treatment.
Below is some very good news!
Antioxidants as antidepressants: fact or fiction?
Source : Department of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Molise, Campobasso, Italy.
Depression is a medical condition with a complex biological pattern of aetiology, involving genetic and epigenetic factors, along with different environmental stressors. Recent evidence suggests that oxidative stress processes might play a relevant role in the pathogenic mechanism(s) underlying many major psychiatric disorders, including depression.
Reactive oxygen and nitrogen species have been shown to modulate levels and activity of noradrenaline (norepinephrine), serotonin, dopamine and glutamate, the principal neurotransmitters involved in the neurobiology of depression. Major depression has been associated with lowered concentrations of several endogenous antioxidant compounds, such as vitamin E, zinc and coenzyme Q10, or enzymes, such as glutathione peroxidase, and with an impairment of the total antioxidant status.
Additionally, curcumin, the yellow pigment of curry, has been shown to strongly interfere with neuronal redox homeostasis in the CNS and to possess antidepressant activity in various animal models of depression, also thanks to its ability to inhibit monoamine oxidases.
There is an urgent need to develop better tolerated and more effective treatments for depressive disorders and several antioxidant treatments appear promising and deserve further study.