Antidepressants and anxiolytics (anti-anxiety meds) may be more effective than a placebo, but unfortunately, they can cause numerous side effects. So what are the natural alternatives to these chemical treatments?
Psychotherapy doesn’t necessarily go hand in hand with medication. According to a 2015 study, antidepressants are as effective as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). Psychotherapy can draw from many complementary therapies such as art therapy.
Physical exercise releases endorphins and dopamine, which is why we feel so much better after going for a walk, a jog, going dancing, doing yoga, swimming or any other type of sport, even including gardening! So what are you waiting for? Sign up for your own preferred activity!
According to a report published in 2013 by researchers from the University of Toronto, 25 in 30 studies relating to the benefits of sport show that regular physical exercise reduces the risk of depression, and clearly it is 100% natural!
In a four year long study, 424 patients who were on antidepressants were separated into two groups: one continued taking medication, and the other group progressively came off their meds and started practicing mindfulness meditation. The results: meditation was as effective as antidepressants for improving patients’ quality of life, except that the former doesn’t have any side effects and lifts the spirit!
Meditation has numerous benefits for the body and mind, because it helps you to relax and helps you learn how to breathe properly.
According to a study published on the 23rd February 2018 by researchers in the University of California-Los Angeles, reported on the website Science Daily. growing up or living close to nature promotes cerebral development and improves cognitive abilities such as memory, concentration, creativity, etc.
Other studies have previously shown the benefits of nature on the brain and on wellbeing, but this study once again confirms them!
Sunlight has an effect on our serotonin levels (a mood regulator), and it also promotes the production of vitamin D. A 2011 study carried out on 80,000 menopausal women confirmed that people who were lacking in vitamin D were more prone to depression.
If you don’t get enough sunlight where you live, or if you don’t have the time to make the most of it, remember to consume foods that are rich in vitamin D. You could also try light therapy, another effective natural antidepressant.
Omega 3, magnesium and fruit and vegetables are effective for fighting against depression, according to several studies. Contained for example in oily fish, omega 3 affects serotonin levels and thus has a positive impact on mood.