Natural Remedies

Dealing with Depression Naturally

Dietary Changes

2 User Reviews
5 star (2) 

Posted by Jodie (Littleton, Co) on 07/13/2017
5 out of 5 stars

Hello, I am brand new to this site and a nobody. I will tell you I used to have horrible depression my whole life. I was suicidal as long as I can remember. What changed it? I went gluten free. It took a few months and I just kept feeling better and better each day. I am 54 and for the first time in my life I am free of depression. And guess what? If I get a hold of even a crumb of wheat, the depression will come back for about 2 weeks, feeling like I did before going gluten free. Now a days its much easier to find the gluten free substitutes for pasta make the transition easy peasy (and I'm a foodie). You can still have Mexican food as long as its a corn tortilla rather than flour, Yes you can eat fudge and ice cream on this diet too. It changed my life and I also lost 35 lbs even eating fudge on the holidays. It definately wont hurt. I can even think better..much better now.

Hope you know you are loved in this word..regardless


Dietary Changes
Posted by Somya (Hyderabad, India) on 02/15/2013

I have been diagnosed bipolar disorder, am using oxetol 450mg, amixide in the night, flutop 20mg on alternate days. I feel very sad for no reason, feel like crying, sensitivity in head. What diet can cure my low mood?

Replied by Ken
(London, Uk)

Eliminating gluten and sugar might be a good place to start for your depression. I also recommend at least 45 minutes of cardio exercise 3-4 times a week. This will help immensely. Also check your magnesium levels.

Dietary Changes
Posted by Tina (Venice Beach, Cali) on 12/20/2009

Holiday Depression

I have been feeling more & more depressed the past month. I don't usually get depressed, so it's strange even though it IS around the holidays, a time when many get depressed. Anyhow, today I realized that maybe my depression has something to do with the radical increase in white flour and sweets, thanks to the constant supply of pastries, cakes, chocolates, candy canes and m&ms at my office during the entire month of December!!!! I normally don't eat much gluten and sugar products, which is why I am making a connection here.

Thank goodness I am on holiday now and don't have to be around the sugary temptations for a couple of weeks, so I am going to detox (stop eating junk food) and see if my depression disappears. I will let you know if I am successful. I know the holidays can be tough times for many people, but maybe we should also be highlighting the fact that people are eating so much crappy food that they might also be going into candida overload.

Thank you for reading! Happy Ho Ho Ho to all.

Replied by Carmen
(Nova Scotia, Canada)

oh yes!!! I too am feeling something, not a depression but an underlying GLUM feeling. I too am eating holiday junk to excess, it is everywhere!!! I went to a holiday party last night and ate a late supper, eating foods i rarely eat at an hour I never eat, slept very poorly and had odd dreams all night. I made the connection this morning, it must be it!!! Let us know how it goes.

Replied by Tina
(Venice Beach, Cali)
5 out of 5 stars

Update: after one day off sugar and flour products, my depression totally went away. I am back to normal. WOO HOO!!!! Glad that this was such an easy fix and boy, do I feel like a fool for letting it go on for so long before figuring out the overload sugar connection to depression. Hope this helps someone else to cure the holiday blues!

To Carmen, yes yes "glum" is a great description for what I was feeling!

Replied by Merryanne
(Orange City, Florida, USA)
117 posts

Thanks,, from Merryanne in Florida,,maybe the bread carbs are my problem,,I have been crying several time a week for 1 and 1/2 years and blamed it on the fact my dog died,,but it has been 1 and 1/2 years!!! so i think i will cut down real low on the sugar and bread and see what happens in the next couple weeks,,Thanks

Dietary Changes, Exercise, Supplements

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Jill (Bronx, New York, United States) on 12/18/2009
5 out of 5 stars

Dysthymic Depression

I've suffered from a moderate constant form of depression called Dysthymia since I was 14 (I am now 43). I've been on several different antidepressants over the years. The last one I took was Paxil CR (which I was forced to quit cold-turkey in 2005 after production of it was briefly stopped after a problem at the pharmaceutical lab). It turned out to be a blessing in disguise. It was a hellish experience and though I did get an appointment with my Dr. a week into the cold-turkey and could have taken regular Paxil to ease my distress, at that point I wanted NOTHING to do with these medications. The withdrawal symptoms showed me just how much they mess with your brain chemistry. I was getting all sorts of electrical "zappy" sensations, dizziness, tremors, and neuralgic pain that traveled all over my body. It took about 3 months for me to get over the hardest part of it. After that I joined a gym and started a simple EXERCISE program. Just 20 minutes of cardio (pick the machine of your choice) and another 20 minutes or so of weight training and stretching. Yoga classes are super helpful as well. Not only did this help me detox from the residual symptoms but my mood improved dramatically. I still have some 'down' days, but who doesn't? Overall I feel much more energized and balanced than I ever did on the antidepressants.

I've since made incremental changes in the quality of my DIET over the years and this has boosted my mood even more. I no longer eat any overly packaged/refined foods. I eat whole grain breads (sprouted & hemp mostly), and try to cook from 'scratch' as much as possible. Extra virgin olive oil is my cooking oil of choice (except when I am sauteing or using a relatively high heat, in which case I use sesame oil). I still eat meat, but not at every meal or even every day, and when I do it is no longer the "star" on my plate, it is about a 3-4 oz serving and the rest of the plate is filled with vegetables and whole grains. I've learned to love leafy green vegetables (so much so I pile them on my plate). I still 'allow' myself to have guilty pleasures, but after awhile you find you don't really want them because your body has everything it needs nutritionally (so you don't get carb cravings) and your mood is so good you don't cave in to the emotional eating binges. The only 'difficult' time is around that time of the month...I get a little hungrier and may have a slice of cinnamon toast or a little ice cream, but nothing like the pig-outs of the past :) For any emotional irritation during that time there is nothing like a good cup of tea (sweetened with agave so as not to spike your blood sugar...I've come to prefer it over sugar).

Finally, SUPPLEMENTS can be the icing on the good mood cake. I take a whole food multivitamin to fill in any nutritional gaps, a good Omega blend oil (something with borage oil in it is excellent too) and vitamin D drops in the wintertime (along with plenty of time under a sunlight simulator bulb - I keep one in my reading lamp).

Record numbers of people are suffering from depression because of the standard American lifestyle & diet. It doesn't have to be that can feel good again without dependency on pharmaceuticals and by only making a few simple lifestyle changes (no need to go vegan or raw, though go for it if that makes you even happier).

Replied by Luiz
(South America)

I totally agree with this post. Well being is tightly associated to our diet.

About three years ago I lived on fast-food and frozen processed food. I was addicted to cocaine, got drunk every day, and had bouts of depression all the time where I simply could not function.

I started to change things little by little, first with education by monitoring sites and forums like this, reading books, trying diets and new "real" foods. My theory is that we were made perfect. We just need to put our physical body in a position to heal and maintain itself: literally give our body a chance.

Today I crave things like brown rice, sauerkraut, chilled açaí bowls with granola, steamed vegetables, etc. When I feel like eating something sweet, I have a can of coke (not very often). I no longer crave coffee, but I do drink cups of green tea tea with molasses and VCO. Yum!

I do not crave or desire any of that crap anymore! I have a frozen lasagne in my freezer and ice cream that must have been there for months and months. I just get this stuff for emergencies or when people visit, and end up not needing them.

I still eat meat, french fries, fast food, but it's just not part of my daily diet because my body no longer see that as "food". It's just something to have when there is nothing more nourishing available, a filler.

I learned the difference between being hungry and "feeling like having something to eat". I can also now tell the impact of foods in my life... my mood completely changes after eating a lot of barbecue for example. Coffee now puts me in a state where I feel a anxious and apprehensive about everything, and sometimes a bit shaky.

I still have my struggles with life as everybody else as well. I drink beer more than I should, but things are changing slowly. I no longer have that urge to change everything overnight. That's just not sustainable in the long run. You have to commit a small positive change, and wait a few weeks to see what the impact it. Once you do this over and over, one day you will come to the realisation that you are a whole new person. And also in love with it!

I haven't been sick in years. I take no medication of any kind. No doctor can scare me into doing anything. I'm not opposed to seeking help if I need it either, but I understand now that a good doctor is one that understands that he is an instrument in healing, nothing more. I can't run from pompous doctors fast enough.

Dietary Changes, Lifestyle Changes

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Ann (Tampa, Fl) on 08/04/2020
5 out of 5 stars

Major depressive disorder

I had major depressive disorder from age 4 until age 26. I'm 41 now, no problems with it. I was so bad I would have to snap my wrists with a rubber band to keep my thoughts from cascading downwards and had to go inpatient a number of times.

At age 19, I began a yoga teacher training program. I began a slow turn to vegetarianism because of a book I read to help migraines. When I did this, 75% of my MDD lifted, and my mind cleared up for the first time since I could remember. I even tried to go back and immediately the depression set in along with a newfound anxiety. That's when I committed to full vegetarianism.

It wasn't a cure-all, though, and I have to say the truth that I found a higher power that loved me and I felt it express very strongly to me. Once during a time period of self-harm I said no one loves me and I just clearly felt a strong response that he loved me. In that moment, I committed never to self harm again but it took time to get away from music that was always in lack. Always missing something. I had to turn to music that was talking about gaining and positive ideas.

I was still struggling with the MDD, but I began to respect myself and say that I would not be in a relationship with someone who did not love me. Therefore, no more intimate relations with those who are not truly wanting to be with me. This change probably brought me to 80% without major depressive disorder and kept me from going under water emotionally. I joined a program for that.

Once I found out that I had a learned eating disorder, and went into treatment with a nutritionist who balanced my food, and began to work on the reasons behind it, I would say that my major depressive disorder was gone at 100%. For whatever reason, the consistent nutrition at certain times unlocked the key to my major depressive disorder it was like I was saying that I deserve to have food and I deserved to have life. I also had to work on getting out of other people's business and began attending a program for that. I can only control what I do but of course one has to set up boundaries for things that are wrong. (I guess the best way to summarize that is that I learned how to interact with people in my life or family in a way that set up boundaries).

I have not had a problem since maintaining these changes and I'm super lucky and wanted to share with others.

Dietary Recommendations

2 User Reviews
5 star (2) 

Posted by Charles (Burlingame, Calif/USA) on 02/10/2009

58 year old male with a former history of great health/runner/government worker who worked out doors. Forced retirement with foot/heal and hip problems. Those are tolerable but have self diagnosed and one doctor diagnosed depression. Absolutely cannot get out of bed...when awake seem to ruminate about everything wrong with the world or the economy. Sorry to dump on all but ...almost at a very scary point in my pysche. I am reaching out to all. Charles

Replied by Sid Davis
(Springfield, Missouri, USA)
5 out of 5 stars

When I was younger I was sad most of the time and often had bouts with fear. Mine turned out to be dietary. I ate a standard US diet with plenty of sweets and refined foods. I also drank a few times a week and the drinking would deplete my body even more than just the crummy diet.

On the insistence of a friend, I started taking a high dose multiple vitamin from a health food store, plus a separate vitamin B supplement, separate vitamin C supplement, and separate calcium, magnesium, zinc supplement. I also cold turkey cut out all refined sugar, soft drinks, coffee, and refined flour. I ate about three pieces of fresh fruit a day and had three servings of fresh vegetables per day. I got my protein from meat and cheese, and ate whole grains like whole wheat bread and brown rice. I also exercised 20 minutes a day, five days a week which I had to force myself to do at first.

It worked for me and 35 years later I still follow this regimen, although not quite as strictly as before. I continue to be optimistic and I think I have a normal energy level for someone 65. Once I started to feel better, I experimented with dose levels, but I take well above the recommended daily allowances every day.

My own view is that medications just cover up the symptoms and may actually contribute to the problem. I hope you are able to change your life to one that you enjoy living; time keeps running out.

It worked and I continue today to be optimistic and have normal energy for a 65 year old.

Replied by Rick
(Montreal, Quebec)

Greetings Charles, There are many substances in nature that are useful to treat depression. Rather than try a hit or miss approach, I would suggest you find a book that will help you understand what is happening and what to do about it. An excellent choice is a book by Gabriel Cousens, a noted psychiatrist who uses natural means to cure depression.

Next suggestion, water... I think learning about the effects of water would be a solid foundation in any quest for better health, mental or physical.

All of the best Charles,

Replied by Anna
(Daytona, Florida)
5 out of 5 stars

I wanted to add my experience to the dietary reccommendations. My depression has vanished since I added more fat to my diet and since I have been taking a b complex pill everyday. I now eat a tablespoon of cocunut oil in my tea each morning.

Many people who have adopted a low carb diet with adequat fat and protein have been able to get rid of there depression. Protein is great but please don't forget the fat!! And no fat does not make you fat! In my opinion carbs do!

Hope this helps someone!


Energy Healing

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Carlos Sumpter (Lindenhurst, NY) on 05/27/2012
5 out of 5 stars

I practice a hands on application over the craneal area as a conduit of the healing energy it flows through me but it comes from a higher source it goes to the brain and balances any energetic imbalance that restores mental health. a sense of warmth and a placebo effect will follow as a pain reliever capable of producing symptomatic alleviation.

Carlos Sumpter


3 User Reviews
5 star (3) 

Posted by Jaminn (Alberta) on 07/31/2015
5 out of 5 stars

Exercise for Depression and Anxiety:

I am surprised to see that exercise is not mentioned in the list of remedies. It is a life saver. The ones that work best are high intensity low rep exercises that boost your serotonin levels. Do it in the morning to get most out of it.

Posted by Annie (Chicago, Il, USA) on 07/01/2013
5 out of 5 stars

The way I beat depression? Not medication, but Exercise, exercise, exercise.  I had a bad bout of depression after my husband and I separated. Leading up to the separation, I went to the office every day and worked until 8pm every night. I had no energy to exercise or take care of myself. After we separated and I spent many a weekend laying around on the couch, I realized that my long hours with little energy left at the end of the day hurt my marriage. I returned to the gym and spent at least an hour a day exercising 4 times a week, either before or after the office. My depression diminished, my spirits rose, and I was able to handle the end to my marriage with grace.

Replied by Glen
(Rocky Point, Ct)
5 out of 5 stars

I agree, I always feel great when I exercise. Article in today's New York Times about researchers at Princeton recently discovering that exercise creates new neuropathways in the brain. See -

Exercise, B Complex, Magnesium

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Lily (Brisbane, Queensland, Australia) on 10/20/2011
5 out of 5 stars

Hi Seekthetruth, I found exercise (walking over 1/2 hour), vit B complex and magnesium brought me out of depression. Also omega 3 fish oil is very good for depression. I don't think your friends will find these natural supplements too scary. Hope the best Lily.

Exercise, Omega 3, Sauna

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Jess (Boston, MA) on 03/02/2023
5 out of 5 stars

I have to monitor my mood because I'm prone to depression so I have to nip it in the bud. This is what works for me.

1. Exercise, especially intense aerobic exercise or weightlifting.

2. High-quality canned tuna (due to the fish oils). If/when I get down just having a bit here and there can perk me up.

3. Sauna. It's difficult to be depressed when you sweat it all out. Also gives you time to meditate and get into a better mindspace.

4. "Doing" rather than thinking. For example, trying to get involved in a tasks at home or at work that keep your mind off things. Decluttering, cleaning, gardening, etc. Anything other than negative thought patterns.


2 User Reviews
5 star (2) 

Posted by Rachelle (Roseland, NJ) on 11/14/2008
5 out of 5 stars

I have suffered from depression and "dark moods" for years. I am very much against taking prescription drugs as I believe they do more harm than good. However, about 6 weeks ago I was feeling so depressed and dark that I began to consider going to the Dr. for a prescription antidepressant. I thought, maybe I'm just adding to my suffering by being so against modern pharmaceuticals. Anyway, I turned to Earthclinic and read about 5-HTP and decided to give it a shot. I bought extra strength 5-HTP in the form of L-5 hydroxytryptophan, 100mg per capsule. I started off taking 2 capsules first thing in the morning before eating. Did this for about 3 weeks. I increased the amount to 3 capsules per morning and have been doing that since. I first noticed that my moods were more "neutral" instead of depressed and I took that as a sign of improvement. I presently feel good and not depressed.

I would just like to add that I recently added fasting to my health protocol. I read a fascinating book called "The Miracle of Fasting".

They say in this book that fasting helps emotional issues as well as physical ones. I have done a 24 hour fast once per week for 2 weeks in a row and I believe that it has contributed to my feelings of well being. I plan on continuing doing a weekly 24hr fast.

Hope this helps.

Replied by Devon
5 out of 5 stars

I started eating once a day, around 4-5pm. This means I do a 24 hour fast, roughly. It hasn't even been 2 weeks, but it has been very beneficial. I was 161 lbs and am already at 154. I can literally feel my body doing what it's supposed to be doing for energy. Sometimes I have so much energy that it feels as though I took an ADD medication, like Adderall. Definitely helps me feel hopeful and has the ability to get me out of that dark, horrible run. Good luck to you.

Fish Oil

6 User Reviews
5 star (6) 

Posted by Calista (Penang, Malaysia) on 01/03/2009
5 out of 5 stars

Fish Oil (Omega 3 Fish Oil) REALLY helps with depression. I have been battling severe clinical depression for over 2 years now. Though I'm emotionally & mentally better, I had problems with irregular sleep pattern, excessive sleepiness and lack of energy. I read that Omega 3 can help, so I tried taking it. After just 3 days on 3000mg a day (taken on breakfast, lunch, dinner), for the first time in years I noticed I slept less during the day and slept better at night. It's been weeks now and I continue taking 1000-3000mg a day, and I keep feeling better. I now wake up feeling more refreshed and motivated to do things. I have the energy to actually do them. My naps are short, or sometimes I can go without one. I feel sleepy after a certain time (at night) and can actually sleep throughout the night and wake up ONLY when it's morning. It has regulated my sleep cycle! I can't remember the last time I feel this great! It's amazing such improvement can be achieved with just a simple thing like Fish Oil. Do try it. There can be no harm, only good.

Replied by Ian
(Oldham, Manchester United Kingdom)
5 out of 5 stars

After years of ups and downs and depression, I must have tried almost every supplement and pharma pills also. My conclusion is that for myself a good quality pharmaceutical grade fish oil really is excellent at stabilising and improving mood. I use one but others available. Also I've found vitamin c works well to improve my mood also, having read about "histadelia" and high histamine levels that could be the reason as vitamin c is a potent anti -histamine. Commonly touted remedies such as tryptophan made me worse as does any ssri like prozac. Also selenium seems to affect my mood in a negative way also. I guess the bottom line is we are all different biochemically and have to experiment on what works for yourself, though for anyone with these symptoms I'd suggest everyone reads about histadelia and histapenia and the roles of histamine in mood.

Replied by Samantha
(BC, Canada)
5 out of 5 stars

Yeah fish oils helped me too. I was taking Cod Liver Oil, about 1 Tablespoon per day, for other health issues and I noticed that I started laughing more, mostly during tv shows which I hadn't found "laugh out loud" funny before this so it was surprising. Maybe just after a few days too; its effect was pretty quick.

Replied by Ashley
(Edinburgh, Uk)

Which brand do you recommend is better?

Fish Oil
Posted by Shanon (San Antonio, Texas) on 11/29/2008
5 out of 5 stars

Fishoil helped my depression. I was about to consider Zoloft when I ran into an article about the benefits of fishoil. I started taking 3-4 grams I divided doses and in less than 5 weeks I felt better! Then, I started sleeping before 11 pm and found out that I functioned better and my thoughts were more positive. Everyone used to tell me that in order to cure depression you had to think positive...fishoil taught me how to do so! it's been four months and I only get depressed during my period. I'm working on that...any suggestions?

Replied by Naturelove
(Ft. Polk, Louisiana)

B complex vitamins will have not only a positive impact on your mood, but help you stay regulated during your period.

Replied by Jane
(Spring Valley, Ny)

I don't know about fish oil curing anything but Apple Cider Vinegar and molasses totally helps with bad period.

Fish Oil
Posted by Colleen (Perry, Florida)
5 out of 5 stars

Omega 3 Fish Oils work great for depression!! Be sure to take them on a regular basis. They really work wonders for depression.

Replied by Ethan
(Nashville, Tennessee)
5 out of 5 stars

I take fish oil at least twice a week. I have been doing this a year now. Though it has not cured my depression it seems to help. I also take a multi vitamin occasionaly. I was skeptical of a natural cure working after having tried ST Johns Wart because it did not seem to work for me but I gave it a shot and I have been doing fairly well. I still get depressed but not for such long periods of time like I used to.

Replied by Laurie
(Wolverine, MI)

In reply to the person taking fish oil. Fish oil is very good, trying different types of omega threes would be beneficial. Vitamin D3 is essential in winter months, especially if in the northern states; no depression when vit D3 is around. Best regards

Replied by Nirinjan
(Traverse City, Michigan)

For those who are vegan or don't want animal products you can try hemp oil which has omega 3,6,and 9. Hemp oil with bragg's or tamari makes a great salad dressing!