Often, the exact causes of depression & anxiety are the same, though the triggers may seem to be different.
You need to adopt a lifestyle that doesn’t worsen your anxiety.
Clinical depression is a completely different condition from normal depression, a sense of sadness and being worried all the time. Clinically depressed people should seek medical intervention.
Those dealing with anxiety and depression caused by everyday activities should try to explore remedies beyond the typical antidepressants.
Avoiding side effects
Medication for depression and anxiety is almost always chronic.
Just as the emotional wellbeing of a person undergoes no improvement and likely, worsens over time, the compulsion to take antidepressants or the dependence on medication also increases.
Antidepressants have short-term and long-term side effects, most medicines do.
Explore natural remedies
The exact impact of the natural remedies will vary from person to person and will be influenced by the severity of the condition.
Some people find respite in travel but one cannot keep traveling or holidaying forever. Some people find transient relief in certain hobbies or pleasurable activities.
These have their limitations too, you need natural remedies that would have a sustained impact. The relief must not be momentary.
Natural Treatments for Depression and Anxiety
So here are seven completely natural remedies for depression and anxiety that can help make a more sustainable difference…
1. Increase your Micronutrients Intake
Most of us commit the cardinal sin of classifying foods according to their primary constituent.
We have broken down our diets into carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins, minerals, and fiber. The last one has been a pretty recent addition in common parlance.
We need to focus on micronutrients!
It is the micronutrients that determine our health, the upkeep of our vitals, how fast we would heal, and if we are feeling alright.
Diets need to focus on what YOU need
Diets should focus on antioxidants, omega fatty acids, specific vitamins and minerals that a person needs, specific amino acids depending on the lifestyle, and even the type of carbohydrate that one should consume depending on the level of exercise, body weight, and appetite.
Eating wrong has all kinds of side effects. It can spike our blood sugar, increase our blood pressure, cause digestive problems and affect hormonal balance.
All these can worsen depression and anxiety.
It is not uncommon for a lack of enough micronutrients in the diet to be one of the causes of anxiety.
2. Opt for Timely Detoxification
The mind is the source of depression and anxiety, but the human body also facilitates the conditions and worsens them.
Obese people, those suffering from poor health, diabetics, and those with high blood pressure, cardiovascular problems, respiratory ailments, and even musculoskeletal conditions will be more vulnerable to depression.
A healthy body facilitates a healthy mind and vice versa.
An average adult, even kids these days, gets exposed to innumerable toxins.
From foods to drinks, chemical-laden products to different kinds of pollutants in the air, most things we eat or consume and touch or the air we breathe in are sources of toxins.
The human body can deal with most of these toxins but only to a certain extent. When there is a toxic build-up, the health starts to deteriorate.
Detoxification is the only way to cleanse your body and you can resume your life anew.
Do not sign up for any chemically or medically aided detoxification, opt for natural detoxification.
3. Practice Yoga
You can practice the exercising aspect of yoga or you can combine exercise and meditation. The latter is a better option but not everyone has the time and intent to sign up for a holistic practice.
Any type of exercise has some positive effect, be it on body mass index or depression. Most people feel refreshed, even if they are physically tired, after a workout.
Being tired or physically exhausted is healthy, being fatigued is not. Most people struggling with depression and anxiety confuse the two.
Fatigue is a perpetual state, a feeling that doesn’t go away even after you have woken up from an eight-hour sleep.
Why Yoga works
The reason why yoga is one of the best natural remedies for depression and anxiety and works better than other exercises is that it focuses on healing.
It is not about stressing yourself to build more muscles or stretching the limits of your body in a purely physical way.
There are many variants of yoga, such as power yoga or hot yoga, but essentially yoga is about postures. It is about correcting your body posture as you take different forms while sitting and standing, bending and twisting.
Yoga focuses on breathing and uses your natural body weight.
The whole approach to yoga has an unwinding effect on the human mind. Depression and anxiety have more to do with the mind than the body, albeit the latter is an important factor as well.
4. Ensure a Balanced Diet
You should ensure a balanced diet, every day and night, whether you are at work or you are holidaying.
Most of us commit a few simple mistakes that have serious consequences and many of us are even aware of these errors. Every meal doesn’t have to be balanced and doesn’t need to have every necessary nutrient.
But your overall diet for a day should be balanced. You should have a few healthy carbohydrates, which is essentially complex carbohydrate.
You should consume lean proteins. Have sufficient foods that are rich in vitamins, minerals, and fiber.
Combine proteins with complex carbohydrates, else the proteins will not be absorbed by the body.
Carbohydrates & processed food
Avoid carbohydrates at night unless you are planning to go for a jog the next morning.
You would not be burning the excess calorie in the carbohydrates after dinner so restricts them to breakfast or at most lunch.
Avoid all processed foods, pick any processed food or ready-to-cook food and it will contribute to your depression and anxiety, be it chips or nachos, instant noodles or sausages.
Whilst thinking about your diet, it might also be worth checking if you are gluten intolerant which can also sometimes lead to depression.
5. Meditate or Practice Mindfulness
You may include meditation in your yoga schedules or keep it separate. Meditation has amazing benefits and one of them is relief from anxiety and depression.
There is scientific evidence that meditation can help with depression and anxiety. A study was conducted recently at Johns Hopkins University.
The study found that those who practice mindfulness meditation have better control of their emotions and most symptoms of depression and anxiety are alleviated.
In fact, the effect of mindfulness meditation was measured, and it was inferred to be 0.3. This is the same extent of effect antidepressants have on depression and anxiety.
There is no side effect of mindfulness meditation.
Like yoga, it also improves breathing and blood circulation. It has numerous health benefits in addition to offering relief from depression.
Meditation is recommended by doctors for patients who are clinically depressed as well.
6. Find Natural Ways to Relax
Traveling is undoubtedly relaxing. Even if you are miles away from a posh hotel, hiking with your friends or family, will reduce your anxiety and help you with depression.
However, traveling is not something you can do every other week unless you are retired and have relative financial stability.
In an attempt to seek relaxation, people resort to anything from drinking to shopping, watching television to mind wandering.
None of these will actually help you to unwind. Music can have some effect, but it will be purely emotional or psychological and not physical.
Massage & Aromatherapy
The best ways to relax are massages, perhaps aromatherapy if normal massage doesn’t entice you, a bath with essential salts, and self-care, or pampering yourself without exposing yourself to chemicals or unnecessary purchases.
Let your body be at ease with itself, let your mind be focused on nothing but the present moment, or even better is to completely switch off.
It is difficult for most people to switch off their minds completely.
Often, it leads to more wandering and that causes further stress and anxiety.
Go for holistic massages, not just the head or face, shoulders or foot. Indulge in an hour-long spa treatment.
7. Shun Unnecessary Distractions
Almost everything around us in contemporary times is a cause of stress.
The phone and television are constant distractions and actually stressful, and it can impair the quality of your sleep.
The popcorn entertainment served these days is as bad as the microwave dinner.
Cut back on social media
Social media is one of the most omnipotent causes of stress unless you are engaging in a satiating conversation with an actual friend.
The internet is no better with too much noise if you cannot only focus on the substance.
The smartphone, television, social media, and the internet are all useful in small doses and necessary when it comes to working for many people.
Otherwise, they should not be too integral to your personal life.
It’s one of the easiest natural remedies for depression and anxiety, to shun unnecessary distractions, indulge in healthy habits that make you happy and you will find it easy to manage your depression and anxiety.