Eliminate Depression Naturally

Depression is becoming increasingly common, but often goes away with natural therapies. Though how we feel has a lot to do with psychological issues, it can also be dramatically affected by our biochemistry. So while doing one's "psycho-spiritual" work is important in treating any illness, you will be amazed at how much better you can feel when you optimize your biochemistry — naturally!

Posted on | Jacob Teitelbaum, MD | Comments ()

Depression is becoming increasingly common, but often goes away with natural therapies. Though how we feel has a lot to do with psychological issues, it can also be dramatically affected by our biochemistry. So while doing one's "psycho-spiritual" work is important in treating any illness, you will be amazed at how much better you can feel when you optimize your biochemistry — naturally!


From a psychological perspective, depression usually represents repressed anger that has been turned inward. This is why choosing to allow yourself to be angry or even to sometimes go into a rage can be healthy when you're depressed. You can tell when the anger is healthy because it will feel good. Remember though, that you are choosing to be angry, and what you are angry about is nobody else's fault (so don't beat up others with your anger). When you don't allow guilt to get in the way, notice how your depression decreases and you feel better after a good fit of anger!


From a physical perspective, depression often reflects faulty biochemistry. Begin by asking yourself this simple question: "Do I have many interests?" If the answer is yes, you're probably not depressed but rather have other physical problems causing how you feel — for which effective treatment is available — and not depression. If you do not have many interests, you probably are depressed and the treatments below will be very helpful for you.  


Happiness has its own biochemistry which can be powerfully balanced and enhanced naturally. Let's start with the basics:

  1. Overall nutritional support is essential. So take a good multivitamin supplement.
  2. Begin a walking program. Research has shown that walking briskly each day is as effective as Prozac for depression.
  3. Get more sunshine. Inadequate sunlight is a common cause of depression (called "Seasonal Affective Disorder" or "SAD"), which should be considered if your depression is worse in the winter.
  4. Get eight hours of sleep a night (use natural sleep therapies if needed). Ambien is also reasonable, but about 1% of people report experiencing severe depression after a year of being on Ambien (if Ambien is causing it, it goes away within a few days of stopping its use).

This is a good foundation. But what can you add specifically for the depression?

  1. Take fish oil. Fish can be very helpful in depression and other psychological problems. Most of your brain is actually made of DHA, one of the two key components of fish oil. In fact, taking fish oil during pregnancy markedly decreases the risk of post partum depression. Fish is called "brain food" for a good reason!
  2. Optimize thyroid function. Natural Armour thyroid hormone (by prescription) has been shown to be very helpful in treating depression. Taking thyroid hormone may help even when Prozac fails
  3. Treat other hormonal disorders. Suboptimal testosterone and estrogen levels can frequently cause depression and are easily treated by holistic physicians.

It is also critical that your body has what it takes to make the three key "happiness" neurotransmitters that your body needs. These are serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine. High dose B vitamins and magnesium are critical for energy production. That along with tyrosine and tryptophan produce the hormones and neurotransmitters that contribute to your feeling well!


Most of you have heard of St. John's wort, and 25 double-blind studies with a total of over 1,500 patients have shown it to be as effective as prescription antidepressants, without the side effects.  Magnolia bark also has a long history of use in traditional Chinese formulas that relieve anxiety and depression without leaving you feeling like you've been drugged.


Prozac is only about 10% more effective than placebo, and the side effects — despite 90% of the benefit coming from the placebo effect — can be serious, including loss of libido, weight gain, emotional flattening, and sometimes becoming downright suicidal (and perhaps even homicidal).  So wean yourself off the Prozac and recover the full and happy feelings and lost libido you once had — naturally.

Blog written by Jacob Teitelbaum, MD
Dr. Teitelbaum overcame Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia in 1975, and since then has helped hundreds of thousands...