Other than being as healthy and active as possible, managing anxiety and depression can take some extra help. If anti-depressants and therapy aren’t exciting first steps for you, talk to your doctor about the possibility of these natural supplements helping ease the symptoms of depression and anxiety.
- Vitamins: Such as vitamins B, C and D: It is easy to be deficient in these three vitamins, that is why people frequently turn to additional supplements to keep their body balanced and healthy. Vitamin B12 is known as the energy boosting vitamin, as well as calming and aiding with concentration. Vitamin C will not only help fight off the common cold and flu, it is also known to be great for managing stress and staying calm. Found in most uncooked fruits and vegetables, it is easy to make sure you’re getting enough Vitamin C in your diet. Lastly, low Vitamin D levels have been reportedly associated with depressive and anxiety disorders. Doctors are finding that many Alaskans are Vitamin D deficient and could greatly benefit from a Vitamin D supplement. Talk to your doctor about checking your vitamin levels to assure deficiencies are not playing a role in your depression, stress, or anxiety.
- St. John’s Wort: Although the evidence that St. John’s Wort aides with anxiety and depression is not definitive, many people would agree that St. John’s Wort is worth trying to combat mild to moderate anxiety and depression. St. John’s Wort has been known to increase serotonin (the feel good chemical) levels in the brain in a similar way to prescription anti depressants. As always, consult your doctor when considering trying a new supplement, as St. John’s Wort is known to have adverse side effects with other prescription drugs. Additionally, do not take St. John’s Wort with, in place of, or to replace your already prescribed anti-depressants or anxiety medication as serious health problems can occur.
- Magnesium: An essential mineral to your body, being magnesium deficient can cause many problems related to energy, concentration and stress management. Talk to your doctor about the possibility of a Magnesium supplement helping you alleviate difficult problems such as stress and depression. People who have taken Magnesium supplements have reported decreased depression and lethargy over time.
Note: If you or someone you know is experiencing depression or anxiety, do not try to self medicate. Consult your doctor about what treatment options will work best for you. Talk to your doctor before starting or stopping any medications. Consult a doctor immediately; call 911 or a suicide hotline at 1-877- 266-4357 (HELP) if you or someone you know is experiencing thoughts of suicide. The Crisis Line Alaska website has helpful links and information as well.