Depression And Mineral Loss
Many of the people who come to see me in my offices in Los Angeles, suffer from depression.
Depression can be a painful and crippling condition; that can affect every aspect of a person’s life. Depression can affect those around us, and even our capacity to do our jobs effectively.
Consequently, one of the main challenges I face, as a naturopathic doctor, is to find the root causes of the condition, and treat the challenges as simply and effectively as possibly.
One of the most effective ways to treat depression, I have found, involves prescribing adequate amounts of high-quality minerals to the diet.
Our Current Food Supply Lacks Adequate Minerals
Adequate nutrition and mineralization in the daily diet; was something that the health-advocate Jethro Koss, wrote about in his class work Back to Eden.
Koss wrote about health and nutrition during the turn of the 20th century; just as the nation was beginning the industrial revolution, and learning to mass-produce processed foods.
Koss saw the declines he noted in people’s health as directly in proportion to the amounts of processed, or “devitalized,” food the individual was consuming. He saw clearly that processed foods were lacking in nutrients, and that consuming these foods was causing American’s to become sick.
Kloss, theorized that the over-processing of grains, and other plant foods, would lead to potential mineral-loss in the person that consumed such foods. And this in turn would result in an increase in nutritional deficiencies, health challenges, and emotional upset.
Minerals are required for multiple processes in the body that include, bone formation, healthy tissue function, and all healthy organ function including the heart, digestive tract, and the brain.
Supplementing for Brain Health
One of the first supplements that most naturopathic doctors prescribe for depression are the B-vitamins. I personally chose B-Complex by Thorne Research, because the company is hypoallergenic and free of fillers. I also like this company because the B-vitamins are in their coenzyme, or active form. B-vitamins are necessary for active formation of neurotransmitters, the chemical signals necessary for healthy mood.
In addition to a great B-complex, I will usually recommend amino-acid therapy. Amino-acids are the building blocks of proteins, and are used to make neurotransmitters. The most common amino-acid I prescribe for depression is 5-HTP, by Thorne Research. This product helps raise serotonin levels in the brain: a neurotransmitter associated with improved mood and decreased anxiety. This product should not be taken if you are currently taking another antidepressant medication.
I discovered how effective this mineral is for treating depression by accident. I had been running nutritional testing for my patients using the Cell-Wellbeing S-Drive, and had noticed that many of my patients, who suffer from chronic depression, tested extremely low in minerals—especially lithium.
When prescribing lithium, I usually start off at between 20-40mg dosages once or twice daily. And have found that lithium can dramatically improve mood.
Lithium has been used to treat conditions like, bipolar disorder, but it has also been found to be helpful in treating depression as well. Lithium acts directly on the neurons themselves as a sodium channel blocker, and improves mood while decreasing anxiety and depression.
Like lithium, magnesium has been shown to have a calming affect on mood. There are two ways I prescribe it, as a powder to be taken at night as magnesium citrate, and as a tablet as magnesium glycinate; both form are effective. However, magnesium citrate should be taken as a powder for best results. Magnesium not only acts to create a calm mood, but also is involved in literally 100’s of various different processes in the body.
If you would like to find out more about treating depression and anxiety with minerals, or would like to schedule a private appointment with me, please feel free to check out my website at DoctorWhimsy.Com I am available both for in person appointments and for appointments via telemedicine. I look forward to working with you.
Yours in health