I have suffered from mild to moderate depression my whole life. I've tried many things over the years ... Zoloft, therapy, hypnosis, yoga, seminars ... you name it. Nothing helped much. I had also tried natural supplements like SAM-e, 5-HTP, etc. They help some but not a lot. When I started Rhodiola on the second day I felt transformed! Not only did it lift my depression but it actually made me happy! I wanted to do things, live life! I had enthusiam and energy, which I've never really had my whole life. This wonderful little herb has made me feel the best I've ever felt in my life.
Rhodiola and 5-HTP
I sent feedback about a week ago about a rash as a possible side effect from Rhodiola (500mg for depression)but I was also taking St John's Wort (900mg). I did more research and found some people have had an itchy rash in response to St. John's Wort! I tried the St. John's again and the same thing happened. Now I'm on the Rhodiola and 5 htp (50mg)and so far so good.
Rhodiola and 5-HTP
Just wanted to echo the positive experiences reported here. After a bit of internet research, I kind of guessed at a regimen that might work for me, which is one 250mg rhodiola capsule before breakfast, one before lunch, and then 50mg 5-HTP before bed. In fact I found this site because I Googled "5-HTP" and "rhodiola" to see if there was any danger in taking them both, but I see several of you have also come up with a similar plan. Very assuring, and I have to say I felt a bit of triumph for having arrived at the same conclusion that others have made of my own accord.
Anyway, I've been taking it for a short while and I am still flabbergasted at how effective it is. I really just can't get over it. I could feel the effects after the very first dose of rhodiola. Not only did it improve my mood, it made me feel, well, happy! And it improved my personality. Low seratonin levels were impacting my life in many negative ways but now I am a new person.
Also it seems to have eliminated my morning headaches and neck stiffness, but I can't say whether that is attributed to the rhodiola or the 5-HTP. From what I've read it may likely be the 5-HTP.
However as others have stated, I would take caution in the dosage of rhodiola. I have found that if I take the afternoon dose too close to the morning dose, I do become a bit jittery and restless. Still happy--not nervous--but jittery and restless nonetheless.
Rhodiola is obviously powerful stuff and I'm sure it's not for everyone, but if you are the type of person that it can benefit, then like the others here that have reported positive experiences, I think you'll be astounded as to how effective it can be.
I agree, for weeks I was in a horrible depression and the next day I was better (and physically stronger). I took Gaia Herbs Adrenal Support (has Rhodiola) + straight Rhodiola.
Rhodiola and St John's Wort
Rhodiola has done wonders for my anxiety. But I am still having problems with depression and pms. I was wondering if I can take St John's wort and Rhodiola? I am takng 500mg of Rhodiola (3% rosavin and 1% salidrosides) Also, my husband takes St John's wort but it is 300mg (0.3%Hypericin) is this the right kind of St John's wort to take?
(Las Vegas, Nv, Usa)
I, too, suffer from these. I have been doing a ton of research, and I will share with you the three best supplements for women with PMS/depression/anxiety. From what I have read, they are safe, with few negative side effects, unlike St. John's wort, which can cause sun sensitivity, and interacts with some medications. #1 & 3 have been found in studies to work as well as SJW or even SSRI's.
1. Chasteberry aka chinese vitex - helps balance hormones. People with PMS usually are progesterone deficient, and this helps balance that out.
2. L-Theanine - found in green tea, but can be found in supplemental form. Very calming, takes the edge off. Does not make drowsy. Safe.
3. Inositol - found to be particularly helpful with depression, bi-polar disorder, and OCD.
I would also highly recommend taking an Omega 3 supplement in conjunction with, specifically B-12, Folic Acid, B-6 and including a B vitamins complex.
When I do these, as well as avoid too much sugar and get regular sleep, I feel like a new person. If I slip and don't do these things, the monster comes out.
Important note: Anything involving balancing hormones or deficiencies usually takes at least three cycles to notice the positive effect. It's not usually a try for a day or two thing. Also, trying one at a time helps you to see which one is actually helping or not. It's not an overnight solution. This kind of thing takes time and patience, but I believe there is natural help out there with these things.
Good Luck. Sorry this didn't have to do with Rhodiola, but I had to share.
Aroma Therapy & Depression
I am on Citalopram 20 mg. a day. I exercise and eat mostly organic & avoid sugar & other no nos. Also, I take tons of supplements like magnesium & fish oil. Still, the depression has not all gone away. I heard that rose oil was an antidote for depression & decided to try it. All I did was put 1 or 2 tiny drops of rose absolut (the real stuff) on my upper lip, well massaged in, under my nostrils at my "droop time" at night. About an hour later I would also do a bit more aroma therapy by burning just one stick of good incense (not the kind that is made from cow dung, really healthy kind, any "flavor".) I waited an hour for the incense because I wanted my olfactory sense to get the full benefit of the rose oil by itself. (I also rubbed the left over bit on my finger onto my wrists.) The effect has been wonderful. Boy does it put me in a happy, even joyful mood. And this lasts about 24 hours! Also, I noticed it was helping me with attention deficit order, definitely. Well, at first I could find no one else saying that it helped A.D.D. But since then, I have found on the net that yes, people say it helps with A.D.H.D. (A.D.D. is sometimes lumped into that category.) per empirical studies. Now A.D.D. & depression go together commonly. No way I believe this was placebo effect. I didn't dream it would help with A.D.D. for example.
Rose absolut is pricey. However, I get it at a major discount vitamin site that sells everything for about 40% off. It could last me several months at the rate I'm using it, personally.
I had been getting bouts of severe depression. I tried various remedies incl st john's wort and 5htp, both of which gave me devastating results .Then I came across saffron . It really got me balanced into normality . I had it along with acv and magnesium supplements .Wonderful it makes you feel calm and relaxed .I just boiled a tiny pinch in hotmilk and sweetened with a bit of honey .I started 2x aday but now I have it only about once a week or less. It's non addictive .see for yourself.
(Brooklyn, New York)
Hello, I have a cure for depression to share with you!!! Simply sage the herb you cook with. I started with half a tablespoon daily and worked up to one tablespoon in the span of one week. I mix it with a little honey to form a paste and swallow with my coffee in the morning. Within days I had no more depression, which I have had since my early teens! Very inexpensive to buy a bottle of sage, this is a mircle cure! Can also use fresh sage leaves and brew into a cup of tea.
I bought Sam-e for the depression I have had for so 30 years. I got a little headache from it and then I became dizzy. I thought because it was working on my brain already. I read the ingredients and was surprised to see it had Tosylate disulfate. Which is connected to sulpha or sulphur.
I am very allergic to Sulpha drugs and about a half hour later I started to itch. I called the pharmacist where I live and explained to her what it had. She said it would only have a minute amount in it but to get benadryl if I had any side effects. I started to feel needle like picks all over my body and took care of it with the benadryl. Maybe it won't happen to you but be careful.
Mary: I think Tosylate disulfate is the generic name for SAM-e, which is a derivative of the sulfur amino acid Methionine.
As for the reaction, it is ether a problem of Molybdenum deficiency or genetic defect. It's what called a dysfunctional Sulfoxidation mechanism. You should try 500mcg MolyB daily w/ B complex or B-50-100. After 1 wk of this try the SAM-e again as you should have no more reaction and maybe start feeling up and better.
Also for depression, try 500mg Tyrosine in the AM and 100mg 5HTP before retiring.
I have suffered from mild depression for about 10 years now..off and on. As healthcare is very expensive, I never got meds from the doctor, I could not afford them. I was doing some research for natural depression cures, and came across SAM-e. With in 36 hours I felt like a new person.
I took it for 2 weeks, and noticed a that I felt "normal". I read that the reason that SAM-e works so well and most people take it and then stop for a while, is because SAM-e is one of the few meds that cross the blood-brain barrier, thus making it more effective.
After taking it for two weeks, I stopped taking it for over a month as I did not need it. Then I found this site last night while searching for a cure for a friends yeast infection, and came across Apple Cider Vinegar.
I had some here, and took it last night and WOW. I am so not a morning person, but I jumped out of bed and have felt like a million bucks all day long. I will now be taking the ACV daily as well!
(Ephrata, Wa - Washington)
Just a word on Sam-e, it is amazing stuff. It has helped me more than any other supplement. I would like to share some information about it though. It should never be taken with any other substance that effects seratonin, such as rhodiola, 5-htp or even dextromethorphan wich is in Robotussin D.M. and many over the counter medications. And of course Prozac and other prescription medications. For me Sam-e has worked far better than anything else.
I found a good answer to my own post... From Dr. Ray Sahelian:
"I have personally taken SAM-e just to see what it would do, and it is quite a powerful mood lifter. Perhaps I'm sensitive to nutrients, but I notice the effects on 100 mg, sometimes even less. Almost all the tablets on the market are 200 mg. If you plan to take it under medical guidance, here's a few tips your doctor may not know. It's best taken in the morning before or with breakfast. I notice within one to two hours being more alert and more motivated to do things, and in a better mood. Many of the clinical studies have used several hundred mgs but in the long run this can cause side effects. The most common are overstimulation, insomnia, and headache. You can actually feel anxious and restless if you take too much. If you wish to take a small amount, bite off half or a third of a 200 mg tablet and use the rest the next day. You may need to adjust your dose down over the next few days since it can start building up in the system, or you can take a day or two off. Each person is unique in their response."
I have suffered severe depression and anxiety for many years. I have been hospitalised for several weeks and attempted suicide multiple times. During my worst anxiety, I was horrible to be around and developed extreme agoraphobia. I managed to get my condition under control using medications and CBT. However the medications had negative side effects including extreme weight gain of 50Kg and sexual difficulties. The meds also made me need to sleep 10 - 11 hrs a night. Several months ago, I bravely stopped medication and moved onto a combination of SAM-e and vitamin B complex. I feel even BETTER than I did on medication and the negative side effects are gone. I am sleeping well and my family have commented how wonderful I look. I am calm and collected. I need to take 400mg of SAM-e daily, as the 200mg dosage isn't strong enough. On 200mg, my anxiety and depression creeps back in slightly. I highly recommend SAM-e. Make sure to take the vitamin B's as well. This makes it work better.
My husband had a habit of waking up at 2:00am in terrible anxiety every night. The rest of the night was toss and turn, toss and turn. I started him on SamE and overnight, the pattern ceased. Now he loves it and takes it every night. No more insomnia, no more anxiety, no more depression. Good stuff!!
In the fall when the time changes, I often have a very difficult time with anxiety and depression, especially as the holiday season approaches. After being on Effexor for a couple of years, I decided I needed to find a natural solution as I was tired of always feeling 2 steps behind. I experimented with the supplement SAM-e and discovered that it worked wonders fairly quickly. I also realized that some brands are better than others as it is a very unstable molecule. I took the lower dosage 2x a day for about a month. At that point I had to stop taking it for a while because it appeared that my brain chemistry had corrected itself and I no longer needed supplementation. Now I take it as needed, which is about 1 pill every few months. I hope others coming off the anti-anxiety medication will give this supplement a try. It was a wonderful discovery! By the way, doctors in Europe prescribe this remedy more often than prescription meds.
Pink Sea Salt for depression! The emotional and mental fatigue statistics in this country are through the roof! One major change has been a massive decrease in natural Sea Salt over the past 50 years due to the negative results of a ridiculous study using the equivalent of 10 teaspoons of salt per day! Now everyone is low and can't figure out why they are so depressed and losing their minds. The brain NEEDS natural sea salt with trace minerals, NOT processed salt laced with dangerous chemicals. The rest of the world understands the benefits of natural salt--the Egyptians used to withhold salt from their slaves in order to keep them disoriented!
Take 1 teaspoon natural Pink Himalayan Sea Salt per day, divided in several doses of 1/8 tsp or 1/4 tsp throughout the day with a large glass of water. You will likely feel the effects within a few hours if you are trying to ease depression or reduce anxiety.
And if you have trouble sleeping and wake up in the middle of the night often, this is another indication that you are low on sea salt. Right before bed, take 1 pinch of pink sea salt and put it under the tongue for 30 seconds before drinking a cup of water to wash it down. You will sleep through the night because the salt will prevent your aldosterone from spiking and waking you up in the middle of the night. If you do wake up, take one more pinch of salt under the tongue with water and go back to sleep. You will eventually figure out the best dosage for yourself based on how low in salt and water you really are.
I used to work for a major pharmaceutical company that sold antidepressants and drugs for insomnia, both highly addictive btw, and when I found out about this remedy I was absolutely shocked that it was real.
I used to wake up at 1am, 2am, 3am, until I started taking a pinch of pink sea salt under the tongue each night, and now I sleep like a baby and don't wake up at all until 6:30, it's my personal miracle remedy...sleep well!
Serotonin Increasing Remedies
Lin, how does one then increase serotonin levels if medication does not work?
Milk Kefir abundant in Serotonin. Noni Juice contains Serotonin. Brown Rice contains Tryptophan which is a precursor to Serotonin. Red Miso is rich in Tryptophan, which is readily available in absorbable format.
Wheat Grass Juice contains nice amino acid profile providing serotonin.
Warning: Soy Milk is a Goitrogen and Tryptophan Inhibitor.
Shino's Remedies for Depression
hi, i have suffered chronic depression twice, and this second time ive been doing natural therapies. thought i would share what has helped me on this site, as i got some of this stuff through japanese sites that people may not have access to and some of it has been crucial to my recovery!
my depression got so bad i couldnt get out of bed, talk or even eat by myself. being only 27 i pushed myself with work despite feeling terrible for 8 months and this is what happened. i didnt want to take medications, which are still so unreliable, my dad found a site whose plan we followed. main points are:
1. eliminate all forms of stress, as much as possible, including work, study, jobs, housework, cooking...get others to do these for you. also important, avoid all reading, violent movies and programmes, the news, and all games, which cause the adrenals to go.
2. do what you want every day (not what you think you should do, or be doing) - if you just want to sleep, do that and tell others to support you, you need to realise that this is okay and important for recovery.
3. just get someone to make sure you`re eating well (greens to make up half the meal, then quarter protein and quarter carbs. keep to organics and whole foods which means less toxins for your body to have to waste energy on). Drink at least 1.5 litres of good water a day - this helps all your organs function properly and flush out baddies. Avoid smoking, caffeine, alcohol and sugar, which all cause strong mood imbalances.
4. take the following supplements 3 times a day: phosphatydilserine (solgar is gd brand) - this will elevate your mood within 30 mins - you can take this as you need it. soy protein powder (NOT whey. soy releases energy slowly and helps your blood sugar balance) i also found this elevated my mood and brain function each time within about 30 minutes. omega 3, B vitamins (tresos B is good, as is the V2000 by solgar). St Johns Wort - or any of the above can be taken in conjunction with antidepressants safely.
If you have pretty severe depression like i did, then you know that you`re so sensitive to anything that counselling or therapy is a nightmare. In this case the plan above is great because you get better purely by addressing the nutritional balance in your body first. i did it for about 3 months before i felt up to seeing a counsellor. the four points above are all equally important - basically the aim is to eliminate emotional, physical stress as well as any cause of stress on your organs (which i now realise is THE crucial thing with depression and anxiety which doctors and therapists tend to overlook or minimise the importance of), and give your body everything it needs to produce the right balance of mood hormones again. Just note, that as you get better you will find that you level of energy increases - and this can be a fragile time because this can mean that if you`re still having suicidal thoughts you now have the physical energy to carry it out. make sure people around are aware of this so that they can be there for you during this time until your thoughts catch up and balance out too.
These are additional supplements which my naturopath helped me with later - i am not sure if they are all compatible with antidepressants though so please check. 5 HTP has chilled me out a lot, helped ease my insomnia and overeating. adrenal gland tonic (herbal health stores can make them up for you) including things like withania, liquorice, shatavari, wood betony, has helped me as long-term stress in constant fight/flight mode has worn out my glands (hair loss is one indication of this, which i had). bach flower essences, taking epsom salt baths with lavendar, meditation, walking in nature - even taking a short walk in the sun, yoga, are also things that i got into when i was ready.
the rest are really more to address emotional and spiritual needs (which, in depression and anxiety is important) - network spinal analysis and reiki can provide temporary relief at an energetic level, and if you like these i have found that a good spiritual healer can be 10 times better than seeing a therapist as they are way more holistic in finding out what`s wrong, and really care. also EFT technique (free on the website). also an online community called anxietytribe.com and depressiontribe.com helped me connect with others who had the same thing. was especially helpful when i was too down to see any friends or family.
hope this helps...i am still not 100%, but this plan has been amazing. the supplement plan i wrote about is effective for those with medium and mild depression too, and from the hundreds of feedback i read on the site, it has helped so many people.
Ted, i have been taking sodium thiosulfate in the form of an aquarium water conditioner, removes heavy metals and chlorine. Anyway, am I supposed to feel this good after taking it in my water/tea at the rate of about 7 - 10 drops per pint. Calls for 2 drops per gallon to condition the water, I am way over that. Anyway, within 30 minutes I feel great! Almost like an instant ant-depressant. What's your opinion, on the mode of action?
The mode of action of sodium thiosulfate is to reduce the free radicals (from heavy metals and toxic chemical accumulation) that can most likely cause depression. Depression in this case is due to toxicity and free radicals. Sodium thiosulfate is unique in the neutralization of chemical toxicity in the liver.
While it has an anti-depressant effect, I also use it to help with my sleep too. Most natural supplements take about 30 minutes to have an effect while aromatherapy effect is more faster.
Sodium thiosulfate has a strong relaxing and calming effects. So in event of depression or even a child with behavioral problems (ADHD, tantrum, etc) it is the detoxifying effect of sodium thiosulfate of toxic things, such as heavy metals, fluoride, and other toxic substances that helped depression and other psychological problems.
There are also other common everyday remedies that can do this also such as a a tiny amount of borax, baking soda, niacinamide B3 300 mg, garlic, and certain aromatherapy such as narcissus oils or lavender where the mode of actions have similar effects as well. One thing I also used as an antidepressant for myself is the amino acid supplements in soybean oil, that seems to work for me as well.
Therefore being depressed is very much due to toxic environment, heavy metals, vitamin deficiency, and for me, amino acid imbalance. It might have been the L-Phenylalanine and L-Tyrosine which are responsible, however, since those are not available locally, I used the amino acid supplements instead. There are also certain amino acids such as 5-HTP, tryptophan, and SAM-e that also have anti-depressants.
With all these natural supplements and prices at a fraction of med's anti depressants, I think therefore it is a lot safer and more effective to treat the cause by dealing with directly with reducing toxicity and resolving deficiencies.