Feeling blue? Try these natural remedies to curb depression

  • Anjali Mukherjee, Hindustan Times, Mumbai
  • Updated: Aug 05, 2014 15:12 IST

Everyone experiences the blues from time to time. Though depression may look and sound like the blues, it lasts longer and has a more profound effect on the body. It’s normal to feel gloomy or disappointed at times. But if these feelings persist for long, you may well be suffering from depression.

Who gets depression?


Usually, people who are sensitive and insecure are susceptible to depression. Though circumstances affect one’s outlook, people handle situations differently. Women are more prone to being depressed than men. The reason for this is not known. Perhaps depression in women can be attributed to hormonal factors, premenstrual syndromes, menopause and low haemoglobin levels, among others.

Whatever the cause, the effects of depression can be devastating. It can reduce a person’s immunity, lower energy levels, affect family life and performance at work, cause migraines, back or body aches. It is true that whatever we think correspondingly affects some part of the human anatomy. Once the mind is affected, a lot of negativity sets in, and it takes about four to six months for that to have repercussions on the body in the form of some ailment.

Natural remedies

Severe forms of depression require attention from a trained therapist. What you choose to eat has a profound effect on your mental health. While incorrect eating may not be the cause of depression, correcting a deficiency can prove to be beneficial.

Eat more carbohydrates:


Foods rich in carbohydrates like rice, potatoes, pasta and bread help build brain chemicals such as serotonin, which affect one’s mood and is often lacking in depressed people. Those suffering from mild depression tend to feel calmer after eating carbohydrate-rich food.

Also read:Love the evenings? You are prone to depression

Increase your intake of tryptophan:

This is an amino acid that is required in the production of serotonin, the ‘feel good’ neurotransmitter. Eating foods rich in tryptophan like pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds and evening primrose seeds help control the blues.

Rosemary oil:


This is an essential oil, which is a favourite among aromatherapists when it comes to treating depression. A few drops of this oil can be mixed in any vegetable oil or massage lotion.


Siberian ginseng helps improve energy levels and improves one’s sense of well-being.

St John’s wort (Hypericum perforatum):

This herb helps people cope with anxiety and depression. It also helps improve sleep quality. But, it usually works if consumed for about four to five weeks. Do not consume it if you are pregnant.


These vitamins help the neurotransmitters function properly. Foods rich in B-Vitamins include wheat germ, whole grains, green vegetables, nuts and seeds.

Ginkgo Biloba:

These herbs improve blood circulation.

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