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Is Your Depression a Hormone Imbalance?

depression

Sometimes I FEEL CRAZY! But I resent the idea that it’s all my fault. A general sense of crazy is running our political affairs, our media, and our economy. It comes on strong, like a wave of noise, everyday.

If I never feel crazy, I’m not really living. I’m in denial.

So am I crazy? Or, is it more accurate to say that I am one of millions of women who are waking up? We know that there’s got to be a better way.

But for many of us, depression sets in and its symptoms are debilitating. Have you noticed that when you feel depressed, you literally need more energy to get anything done? Your health takes a dive, which continues the cycle of further depression.

There is a time and a place to turn to prescription drugs like antidepressants. But these drugs have become incredibly profitable for drug companies and doctors – leading to an epidemic of over-prescription. I call this an epidemic because numbing ourselves is not the way to go. This is a time to be alive and let yourself feel everything; even the stuff you’d rather avoid.

Feeling sad is not something to be ashamed of. In fact, it’s in letting ourselves feel sadness that we can move through and overcome it.  To do so, we must have a strong internal ecosystem to counteract the toxic stressors of the world. We can use food and supplements to return our hormones back to balance, which helps us navigate with clarity in a world that can be crazy making. Let’s try this before turning to drugs. Let’s support each other in the natural processes of healing.

To break down what’s really happening: Serotonin (a neuro-transmitting chemical that impacts mood and happiness) imbalance causes depression, and most often, serotonin imbalance is a result of hormonal imbalance.  By treating the hormonal imbalance, we return to healthy serotonin production, which is our first line of defense against depression and anxiety.  And most importantly, proper serotonin production leads to experiences like relaxation and optimism.

If you are suffering from depression, you can take this quick test to check your hormone balance: http://www.johnleemd.com/store/resource_hormonetest.html. Find out what really going on, so you can do something about it!

Here are my 3 easy ways to naturally balance serotonin:

·      Supplement with 5-HTP – this supplement can cross the brain blood barrier, naturally stimulating production of serotonin.  Although made from tryptophan, 5-HTP provides stronger benefits than simply adding more tryptophan containing foods into your diet.  This supplement does NOT exist in food, it is made from our bodies as a result of tryptophan intake and is a superior hormone balancing supplement.  I recommend Integrative Theurapeutics 

·      Acquire tryptophan from your diet –  Tryptophan is an essential amino acid that must be provided by foods, and is the basic building block of serotonin. Consider adding more of these foods into your diet to naturally boost tryptophan: mushrooms, watercress, dark leafy greens, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, spirulina, cashews, turkey, beans, and legumes.

·      Lower your simple carbohydrate intake – Although ingesting carbs will cause an immediate release of serotonin, in the long run, the intake is counterproductive, and they serve as a instant gratification source of serotonin only!  Eating too many carbs can actually worsen mood disorders, including depression.  The key is in eating plant based, complex carbs, as opposed to processed foods and gluten.  A good balance of complex carbs/fats/proteins provides you with optimal serotonin production!

Give yourself some time to impart these three natural hormone balancers. Do them for the next seven days and you’ll be on track to a mood game changer.

Check back in to the blog on Friday for a Serotonin boosting recipe!

 

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