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Feeling low tonight?
Everyone feels low, now and again but it has been seen that women are more prone to depression than men.
Everyone feels low, now and again but it has been seen that women are more prone to depression than men. It's probably got something to do with their hormones. Most women complain of exhaustion, mood swings almost everyday and some have a pervasive feeling of sadness. Depression is a term used to describe a range of emotions. Sometimes you experience melancholy, some-times you feel exhausted, over anxious, stressed and at other times you just feel emotional and tearful. Lying submerged beneath these emotions are a host of reasons ranging from nutritional deficiencies to hormonal imbalances, PMS, menopause etc.

As you know, healthy food nourishes both the body and the brain. But did you know that by not eating correctly, you invite nutritional deficiencies that manifest into mental symptoms? And that unknowingly, you could be selecting foods that make you vulnerable to depression? If your body is vitamin and mineral deficient it is likely to affect your memory, concentration, moods and general sense of self. But you can prevent depression by ensuring that your body gets an adequate supply of nutrients, herbs, amino acids and essential fatty acids.

itamins and Minerals
Vitamin deficiencies over a period of time could lead to depression. Our bodies cannot create their own vitamin supply. A well balanced diet helps the body to meet its nutrient requirement. But unfortunately our diets are usually vitamin deficient. A deficiency of B1 (Thiamine) can lead to memory problems, lack of sleep, stomach upsets etc. Niacin deficiency can produce agitation, anxiety. Similarly, deficiency of vitamin B6, B12, folic acid can cause confusion, weakness, palpitation, anaemia, mood swings etc. Vitamin C is important for good mental health. In depressed individuals a 2-3 gram dose of Vitamin C helps to reduce symptoms of depression. If you experience muscle fatigue you're probably deficient in minerals such as sodium, potassium, magnesium, calcium and zinc, which are essential to many processes, related to brain function.

Go natural
Herbs offer you numerous benefits and when taken under proper guidance, have no side effects. St John's wort is widely used in treating depression. The hypericin it contains is known to have antidepressant properties. It is best taken with meals to minimise chances of nausea or gastro intestinal disturbances that a few people experience. But do remember that with herbal remedies it takes time before the effects start showing and you may need 4-6 weeks to experience its antidepressant effects.

Kava-kava
Ideal for tackling stress, anxiety or menopause related depression. This herb is usually used as a relaxant-to calm frayed nerves and sleep better.

Ginkgo Biloba

Has been extensively researched in Europe and has proven antidepressant properties. It facilitates mental functions and enhances the effects of serotonin, which is the 'feel good' neurotransmitter. But it could take you anywhere between 2-10 weeks to experience these mood boosting properties. Just as we all are unique, our bodies too are unique in the way they respond to any treatment. You should take herbs in combination with other nutritional supplements, vitamins, minerals, correct food and proper counselling sessions involving psychotherapy for optimum results.

Our feelings and emotions are all a part of the health package. When we feel happy our bodies are stronger and healthier. When we are stressed and depressed we are open to illness and disease. There-fore food and lifestyle choices go a long way to help prevent you from feeling low and depressed.
Posted on : 28/1/2006
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