Beat Your Depression

Tips, Facts and Information About Overcoming Depression

Stop the presses! Listen to Stephen Pierce.

February 07, 2008 By: John Category: Depression Facts, Depression Stories, Natural cures for depression

Below is an email that I have just received. It is from Stephen Pierce who is an internet marketing genius and people motivator.

If you ever hear Stephen’s history you will be truly amazed at what he has done with his life after being expelled from school several times, going bankrupt several times, living on the streets, and even being shot with a bullet that is still in his leg.

Stephen, and his wife Alecia, truly do love to help people to help themselves.

This short address has the potential to help you in all aspects of your life and I immediately saw the benefits that it could bring to sufferers of depression and anxiety etc., and to those people who may even be contemplating self harm. The talk discusses “true” and “the truth.” It may sound a little confusing the first time through and so I recommend that you listen to it with an open mind a couple of times to get the important message contained therein. Perhaps you, like me, can relate to this.

Enjoy and learn:-


I spent what felt like a lifetime starving
for success, while standing in a pool of
opportunity that seemed to always recede
away from me every time I reached out for

And the moment I was able to take hold of
something, it seem to always turn to dust.

I had an inverted Midas Touch at the time.

That means, what I touched didn’t turn to
gold… it turned into dust.

I was shattered inside, lonely, heartbroken
and desperate.

What looked like a promising future seemed
to fade away quickly into a cold, dark
valley of nothingness.

It got to the point where the only thing
I could think about is what was true at
the time.

What wasn’t working.
What I didn’t have.
Who was better than me.
What others thought about me.
And “I could of” and “I should of.”

Does this sound like you, or someone you

If so, stick with me here.


One day I read a phrase. A phrase that would
liberate my soul and recalibrate my thinking.

After reading this phrase I had one of my
life’s most shocking illuminations.

And right now I want to share both the phrase
and the illumination with you so that YOU can
feel freedom in your soul and rip the chains
of bondage off your life.

Now prepare yourself, because the first few
minutes of this TalkBack may seem rather

However, you need to stick with me and hold
on because it’s just following that heaviness
that your burden will be lifted.

…all in just 9 minutes and 34 seconds.

So let’s get started.

God Bless YOU and YOURS,
Stephen Pierce

P.S. Today’s DTAlpha TalkBack will blast you
into an orbit of outstanding success and

Be ready for your ILLUMINATION!

If you liked that, you may also like to listen to the following message as well:-


If it’s true, that change happens in
a moment.



The few people who previewed today’s
TalkBack say it’s the most powerful
15 minutes of the new year so far.

God Bless YOU and YOURS,
Stephen Pierce

P.S. This is an unforgettable 15 minutes.
You owe it to yourself to experience it
right now.

Check out the rest of the site for other beneficial information whilst you are there.

Top Australian sportsman succumbs to depression.

February 01, 2008 By: John Category: Depression Facts

Shaun Tait is an excellent fast bowler in the game of cricket. However, he is still developing and is finding it difficult to maintain a position in the elite Australian cricket team.

Obviously, the extreme pressures of the game, plus self-imposed pressures have taken their toll as the articles below suggest:-

Tait to consult depressed sportspersons to revive career

Melbourne (PTI): Australian pacer Shaun Tait will speak to sportspersons who have battled depression to revive his desire to play cricket.

The 24-year-old stunned everyone by taking temporary retirement from international cricket on Tuesday citing mental and physical exhaustion.

And in a bid to get over it, he would now consult others like him, including England batsman Marcus Trescothick.

Australian Cricketers’ Association (ACA) President Darren Lehmann confirmed that Tait will consult some athletes who have coped with depression to get over his mental block.

However, he refused to give particular names.

“There are a few (people) that we have got in the pipeline but I would rather not say who at the moment … we will get him in touch with some good people,” Lehmann was quoted as saying by the ‘AAP’, a news agency here.

“He’s not in a great place at the moment. He has got to get back to enjoying life again,” he added.

Lehmann has played with Tait in domestic cricket and described his current state as “sad”.

“Looking back … he’s not (been) as happy as he was in the last few months. He was always struggling a bit on the field,” he revealed.

“The simple fact for him is just getting back to basics and enjoying life. I think he just needs to get away for a while and rest the body.

Lehmann’s view was echoed by South Australia coach Mark Sorell, who felt the youngster needed emotional support.

“We will be giving him the space that he needs and support so that we can see how long it takes,” Sorell said.

Source: The Hindu News Update service.

[Do you think that Shaun Tait would be better off consulting sports people who have overcome depression rather than “depressed sportspersons”?]

Confused Shaun Tait: I don’t know what’s going on
Article from: The Advertiser


January 31, 2008 12:10am

SPEED ace Shaun Tait admitted yesterday he was as confused as anyone about his shock exit from cricket at all levels.
When approached by The Advertiser at his Hyde Park home, a healthy-looking Tait, 24, said he “will talk at some stage” about his indefinite exit from the game.

Dressed in official Australian cricket tracksuit pants, a white T-shirt and black cap, the paceman, who was dropped for last week’s Adelaide Test against India after a poor performance in Perth, said: “I don’t even know what’s going on.

“I will talk at some stage . . . just not now,” he said, clutching a three-litre container of fruit juice.

Tait added that he “would appreciate being left alone”.

His father Phil, who lives on a small property at Dawesley near Nairne in the Adelaide Hills, was also reluctant to speak about his son’s future or reasons leading to his decision.

“(Shaun) asked for his privacy to be respected and so it should be,” he told The Advertiser

Phil Tait blamed sections of the media for being too pushy in the wake of his son’s announcement.

“I think the media should back off and be careful what they say about people,” he said.

On Tuesday, Tait rocked the international cricket world when he quit the game after succumbing to a mental and physical breakdown a day earlier.

“This is not an overnight decision but something I’ve been struggling with for some time,” he said in a prepared statement on Tuesday night.

“A break from professional cricket will hopefully give me a clear mind and a chance for my body to rest and recover.”

“My love and enjoyment of the game is struggling due to these issues and if I continue to go on, it will be unfair on my team mates and support staff of both the Australian and South Australian cricket teams – and most importantly, my family and close friends.”

On Sunday, against Victoria in Traralgon, Tait played his last match when he claimed 3/57 for the Redbacks, which followed his failed return to Test cricket in Perth two weeks ago.

He was not selected in the starting 11 for Australia’s fourth test clash against India in Adelaide last week.

Team-mates and close friends were shocked by the bowler’s decision to quit at such a young age, but are hopeful he will return to the game. Last year, Tait earned more than $600,000.

On Tuesday night, SA Cricket Association medical officer Terry Farquharson said: “The combination of his injury history and the demands of being an elite professional cricketer has affected his physical, and significantly, his emotional wellbeing”.

Tait turns 25 next month.

Meanwhile, it has emerged that Tait will consult other sportsmen who have battled depression in a bid to rekindle his desire to play cricket again.

The Australian Cricketers’ Association will put Tait in touch with other sportsmen who have suffered depression, possibly including former England batsman Marcus Trescothick and AFL footballer Nathan Thompson.

“There is a few (people) that we have got in the pipeline but I would rather not say who at the moment . . . we will get him in touch with some good people,” ACA president Darren Lehmann said yesterday.

“To be perfectly honest, he’s not in a great place at the moment. He has got to get back to enjoying life again.”

Lehmann was confident Tait would play again, but cautioned: “However long it takes, it takes”.

That sentiment was endorsed by SA coach Mark Sorell.

“We will be giving him the space that he needs and support so that we can see how long it takes,” Sorell said yesterday.


This is all very sad as Shaun Tait has the talent to become a star performer in the world wide arena of the game of cricket. I hope that he soon recovers from this ailment.

Perhaps Shaun should be persuaded to read the articles in the Beat Your Depression blog. There are so many that could provide some assistance and relief for him. A good starting point would be, Tending The Mind Garden.

So you think that you are a loser?

February 01, 2008 By: John Category: Depression Facts, Overcoming depression

How often do people just give up when they come to a hurdle in life? Too often I believe.

Hurdles are just stepping stones to success. Look at the portrait of an achiever below:-


  • Failed in Business – Bankruptcy, 1831
  • Defeated for Legislature, 1832
  • Sweetheart/Fiancee Dies, 1835
  • Nervous Breakdown, 1836
  • Defeated in Election, 1836
  • Defeated for U.S. Congress, 1843
  • Defeated again for U.S. Congress, 1846
  • Defeated once again for U.S. Congress, 1848
  • Defeated for U.S. Senate, 1855
  • Defeated for U.S. Vice President, 1856
  • Defeated again for U.S. Senate, 1858
  • Elected President of the U.S.A., 1860

Would you say that President Abraham Lincoln was a loser? Admittedly he did suffer from depression [see “You are not alone” free e-course] but he did not allow that to become an excuse to quit.

You cannot fail… unless you quit!”

Quitters never win and Winners never quit.

Remember the story of the tortoise and the hare and how the tortoise kept plodding along determinedly even though the competition was way ahead. He did not give up when all seemed lost but persevered and overtook the hare [competition] when the hare was sleeping and then the tortoise became a winner.

However, you do not have to come first to become a winner. I have noticed, on a couple of occasions, how a person who came second or third in a talent show on TV went on to become more successful than the person who won the event. Just because you did not come first does not mean that you are not talented or competent.

Look at the person who comes last in the finals of an Olympic swimming event. Do you think that person is a loser? No way! There were just 7 other people in the world that were better than him or her on the day. Look at all of the people who tried to even get to the Olympics, let alone qualify for the finals. Most of those people were also champions in there own rights.

Consider the person who came second in the final. The winning margin can often be measured in hundredths of a second. I consider the second place getter to still be a great athlete.

You too can be great at what you do if you persevere. You can still be a winner without coming first. Let us say that you develop a business where you have scores of competitors ahead of you financially, but you still make a net profit of $5 million per year and growing. Would you consider yourself to be a loser? This shows that you do not have to be the best to be a winner.

Below is a poem and a quotation that I have kept handy for many years to keep my mind on track when it sometimes wanders.


When things go wrong, as they sometimes will,

When the road you’re trudging seems all uphill,

When the funds are low and the debts are high,

And you want to smile, but you have to sigh,

When care is pressing you down a bit,

Rest if you must, but don’t quit.

Life is queer with its twists and turns,

As every one of us sometimes learns;

And many a person turns about

When they might have won had they stuck it out.

Don’t give up though the pace seems slow,

You may succeed with another blow.

Often the struggler has given up

When he might have captured the victor’s cup;

And he learned too late when the night came down,

How close he was to the golden crown.

Success is failure turned inside out,

The silver lining in the seeds of doubt,

And you can never tell how close you are,

It may be near when it seems so far.

So stick to the fight when you’re hardest hit.

It’s when things go wrong that you must not quit




Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence.

Talent will not.

Nothing is more common than unsuccessful individuals with talent.

Genius will not.

Unrewarded genius is almost a proverb.

Education will not.

The world is full of educated derelicts.



Tending the Mind Garden

January 30, 2008 By: John Category: Attitude, Natural cures for depression

I am a great believer that depression and similar afflictions such as anxiety, panic attacks, obsessive compulsive disorder, and bipolar disorder are caused by the way we think, and therefore they can be treated by controlling the way that we think. In fact I have demonstrated this to myself on several occasions, and in particular on one occasion when I was feeling quite morose from some inward thinking until my wife came home from the local gymnasium with symptoms resembling heart problems.

Suddenly, I forgot my perceived problems and dealt with the real problem of getting my wife medical attention as soon as possible. The good news is that medical tests revealed that she did not have any heart problems. It appears that her problem was a reaction to stress and I am convinced that this stress would have been caused by MY depressed inward thinking and outward actions.

This shows how depression, and related problems, has an effect on friends and family as well as the person who suffers from the affliction.

More good news is that since then I have not had any more bouts of depression. When I realized how much my depression was affecting my loved ones, I made a decision to take control of my thoughts. My thinking and values have now been restored to normal.

James Allen, in the early 1900s, wrote several books about self improvement. Amongst them was his classic book entitled “As a Man Thinketh. Here is an extract that demonstrates that he believed we can, and should, control our character, circumstances, and destiny by controlling our thoughts.

“A man’s mind may be likened to a garden, which may be intelligently cultivated or allowed to run wild; but whether cultivated or neglected, it must, and will, bring forth…

Just as a gardener cultivates his plot, keeping it free from weeds, and growing the flowers and fruits, which he requires, so may a man tend the garden of his mind, weeding out all the wrong, useless, and impure thoughts, and cultivating toward perfection the flowers and fruits of right, useful, and pure thoughts. By pursuing this process, a man sooner or later discovers that he is the master gardener of his soul, the director of his life. He also reveals, within himself, the laws of thought, and understands, with ever-increasing accuracy, how the thought-forces and mind elements operate in shaping his character, circumstances, and destiny.”

This is just a snippet of the many words of wisdom found in this masterpiece that has formed the basis of many modern self improvement teachings. You can learn more and get your own free copy of, “As a Man Thinketh” by clicking here.

We cannot stop various thoughts from continually entering our heads, but we can decide which thoughts we choose to allow to remain there, and those that we wish to weed out. Some speakers I have heard have used the analogy that we may not be able to stop birds from flying over our head, but we can stop them from building a nest on our head.

If you want to change your life for the better, consider changing your thinking!

Improve YOUR thinking! Get your free copy of “As a Man Thinketh” now!

Time management and stress and depression

January 29, 2008 By: John Category: Attitude, Depression Causes, Stress matters

As a follow on from the post entitled ” Take the time – Life is short” I thought about how it would be beneficial to mull over how we often tend to think that we seldom have the time to do all of the things that we would like to accomplish. This then becomes a self-imposed pressure to get things done.

Unfortunately, this pressure then develops into stress, which can manifest itself in the form of depression when we often fail to meet these [often unrealistic] self-imposed pressures. We then tend to place MORE pressure on ourselves and the process becomes akin to a snowball. Then the depression deepens, and so it goes.

Eventually we reach the stage where rational thinking may be replaced by anxiety or even panic attacks.

We could take some anti-depressant medication which would make us feel euphoric for a while before developing a “could not care less” attitude about anything and everything, including the task that we wanted to complete, our appearance, and state of health, as I experienced when I reluctantly took such medication.

It would be far better to control our emotions in relation to our time management by thinking, “What is the worst thing that can happen if I do not accomplish these tasks in the desired time frame?” When we think this way we will often realize that these time frames are not such a big deal and, if we take some time out as suggested in “Take the Time – Life is short,” we will probably be much more relaxed and able to do a better job of the task when we turn to it.

Good Mood Foods. Chocolate

January 24, 2008 By: John Category: Good Mood Foods, Natural cures for depression, Overcoming depression, Recovery from depression

One of the most powerful mood elevators is chocolate, says psychologist David Benton of Britain’s University of Wales.

In studies, he played music that put students into a depressed mood. Then he offered them either milk chocolate or carob, an imitation chocolate. Chocolate improved their moods; carob didn’t.

Also, chocolate cravings rose as moods sank. Benton says chocolate contains not just serotonin-boosting sugar and mind-soothing fat, but also other chemicals that favorably affect brain messengers controlling mood.

The bad news is that there are critics of this theory. They say that the benefits of eating chocolate are offset by the fact that eating chocolate gives a quick fix, of short duration, because of the rapid release of energy from the refined sugars and fats, and you can just as quickly experience a flat period until your next meal, or snack. They prefer that you eat low GI food and snacks that will provide a gradual release of energy and level out the highs and lows of feel-good and feel-tired moods.

Everything needs to be taken in moderation, even natural cures for depression. Take care, as too much chocolate may cause weight gains that could cause depression. Luckily, you can enjoy some chocolate and keep your weight under control as only small amounts are needed to produce the desired effect.

Other ways to combat depression naturally can be found here.

Good Mood Foods. Feel-Good Fat

January 22, 2008 By: John Category: Good Mood Foods, Natural cures for depression, Overcoming depression

A low-fat diet may make you grumpy.

British researchers assessed the moods of 20 people, ages 20-37, before and after eating either a daily total of 41 percent or 25 percent of calories from fat. After a month, the lower-fat eaters were rated as more hostile and depressed. Those on the higher-fat diet exhibited better moods and less tension and anxiety.

One explanation is that fat stimulates hormones that influence activity of the brain chemical serotonin, important in governing mood. Low serotonin is linked with increased aggression and depression. One solution: Many experts say it’s OK to get your quota of feel-good fat if it’s mainly monounsaturated fat (olive oil) and fish fat and not artery-destroying saturated animal fat.

As with all things, everything in moderation, even for natural cures for depression. Take care, as too much fat, whether monounsaturated or polyunsaturated, will cause weight gains that, in itself, could cause depression.

Other ways to combat depression naturally can be found here.

Here is a recipe for a mood-boosting dessert

Milk, bananas, chocolate and almonds all have nutrients that help regulate brain cells.


3 Tbs. unsweetened cocoa
3 Tbs. cornstarch
3 Tbs. sugar
2 cups 1 percent milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 medium bananas, sliced
1/4 cup toasted slivered almonds

In a heavy saucepan or double boiler, combine cocoa, cornstarch and sugar. Add milk and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Simmer, still stirring, till pudding thickens, about 5 minutes. Add vanilla. Let pudding cool. Stir in bananas. Serve in dessert dishes, topped with almonds. Makes 4 servings.

Per serving: 225 calories, 7g protein, 6.5g fat (1.6g saturated), 38g carbohydrates, 2.5g fiber, 64mg sodium.

Holiday Depression

December 21, 2007 By: John Category: Depression Facts, Good Mood Foods, Overcoming depression

Why is it that depression is common at holiday periods and especially at Christmas?

We are told that it is the season to be jolly. But what if you’re feeling anything but jolly? I can recall how, in my late teens, I had an unexplained feeling of being low and “down in the dumps” on Christmas Day. Actually, for some reason or other, my mood is often at a low ebb on Christmas Day. I can recall my father asking me what was the matter and I could not give him a logical answer. I was just as perplexed as he was. I wondered if it was because I knew by now that Father Christmas was not real. I still cannot explain why I often feel low at this time of the year.

Depression is common at this time of year, for many reasons.

For some, Christmas and the holiday season is not a time of joy and cheer but of depression, loneliness, anxiety and self-evaluation.

It seems that the festive season tends to force you to face the fact that life isn’t always as joyful as we are led to believe.

For single people, in particular, Christmas and New Year can be a very isolated time. But even if you’re surrounded by family and friends, this time of year can bring more than its fair share of stress, noise, anxiety and squabbles.

When you add this to longstanding financial problems, family conflicts, job problems or bereavement, it’s no wonder calls to helplines about depression and suicide rise by nearly ten per cent during the festive season.

There could be many reasons including financial constraints, not being able to spend time with family, especially those recently departed, or conversely, spending too much time with family, can all lead to Christmas depression and holiday depression.

The added stresses, unrealistic expectations, and fatigue can also contribute to holiday depression. People with few friends or family members, or living a long way from friends and family, may feel even more alone and isolated. People with a large circle of family and friends may feel stressed by having to cook and entertain for large family get-togethers, especially if there is an unpleasant in-law that you need to deal with without causing a scene.

Other holiday depression stressors include:

  • Separation or divorce that can leave people celebrating Christmas and the holiday season alone.
  • People who have lost a loved one, especially recently, are often very mindful of that loss.
  • The activities of the holidays can place a significant burden on already full schedules.
  • The costs involved with the holidays can place a significant burden on already tight budgets.

Although the stressors that can cause holiday depression cannot be completely eliminated, there are a number of suggestions that can help keep Christmas and holiday depression at a minimum.

  • Schedule obligations and parties wisely. If trying to cram another obligation into the already overfilled schedule causes stress, cancel and spend the evening taking a bubble bath or curled up with a good book.
  • Recognize the sadness of absent loved ones instead of denying the sadness.
  • Set reasonable financial goals based on what the budget can afford.
  • Remember that Christmas depression is not permanent. Moods typically improve once the holidays are over.
  • Set reasonable time goals while employing time management techniques. For example, you can do Christmas shopping during the off-peak season and shop online or by mail order. Unique, thoughtful and handmade gifts are often much more appreciated than a gift bought out of obligation.
  • Be especially mindful of diet during the holiday season. High sugar and carbohydrate laden foods typical of the holidays will only make depression matters worse. Allow indulgences during the holidays, but with limitations.
  • Put old issues aside when dealing with family. If that is not possible, consider limiting the time spent with people who aggravate you.

Children, can also experience a post-holiday let down after Christmas, when the brightness and togetherness of the season make way to more mundane things.

Compounding the problem of depression around Christmas and the holiday season is fewer hours of daylight that occur from Thanksgiving and past Christmas. So, in addition to holiday depression, Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) can also play a role in depression during the holiday season.

Although there are many easily identifiable causes for holiday depression, there are also some people [like me] who cannot pinpoint the exact cause of their Christmas depression. They know they are “supposed to” feel happy during the holiday season but instead of feeling happy, the flat, lackluster cloud of depression hangs over them.

Regardless of the cause of depression during Christmas and the holiday season, sufferers of depression during the holiday season might experience excess fatigue, a change in sleeping patterns, irritability and feelings of sadness. People who do not display the outward symptoms of depression during Christmas and the holiday season might develop other stress responses like over eating or excessive drinking.

Should you be a sufferer of depression, try to think of things other than inward thoughts. You can show more interest in, and engage with, children who usually really enjoy the festive season. This will make you think of things, other than your own problems. Or you can start a conversation by asking people questions [not nasty] about themselves. This takes your thoughts away from your own particular problems and makes you appear to be a “nice guy” to the person that you are questioning. Everybody seems to like talking about themselves and people who take an interest in them usually become very popular. Also be careful what you eat as this can affect your mood, either adversely, or for the better.

For those of you who have friends or loved ones who exhibit signs of depression, you may be able to understand their feelings and try to distract them by involving them in activities that will discourage inward thoughts. Giving them a simple job [accompanied with some genuine praise] may be all that it takes to jolt them out of their introspective thoughts and get them to be the pleasant people that we know that they can be.  Introduce some good humor as this, too, helps to alleviate problems associated with depression.  You will need to use discretion with this though.

I hope that you can keep depression at bay during the festive season and have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

What Foods Can Combat Depression, Anxiety and Stress?

December 19, 2007 By: John Category: Depression Information, Good Mood Foods, Natural cures for depression, Overcoming depression, Stress matters

Perhaps the question should be, “Can foods combat depression, anxiety and stress?” or, “How to use food to combat depression, anxiety and stress?”

There are quite a lot of foods that are said to be conducive to combating depression, anxiety and stress. Psychologist, David Benton, of Britain’s University of Wales has conducted studies showing that chocolate is one of the most powerful mood elevators. Benton says chocolate contains not just serotonin-boosting sugar and mind-soothing fat, but also other chemicals that favorably affect brain messengers [neurotransmitters] controlling mood.

However, Professor Robert Sapolsky [Ph.D. Neuroendocrinology] of Stanford University states, in his lectures on “Biology and Human Behavior: The Neurological Origins of Individuality”, that neurotransmitters are constructed from cheap and plentiful precursors – simple amino acids that you get in your diet in huge amounts. He also advises that they can be constructed very quickly and can be recycled. So it appears that there may be something, other than the composition of mood enhancing foods, that has a beneficial effect.

There is no doubt that most people enjoy eating. We consume a variety of foods and treats, including highly processed “junk foods”. We enjoy eating so much that we may indulge in restaurant meals, often as a special treat to celebrate occasions such as a birthday, a promotion at work, for a romantic interlude, or for no specific reason at all, other than to enjoy the experience. Just think of the many other occasions when we partake of food, including beverages, at social gatherings viz: following christenings, weddings, office parties, and even wakes when we celebrate the life of a departed friend or relative.

The enjoyment of eating can make a person feel good and have a beneficial effect on the mood of the consumer. This increase in feeling happy or contented has a corresponding reduction in the feelings of being depressed, anxious, or stressed. Even believing that certain foods can improve a person’s mood can do just that by virtue of the placebo effect. The placebo effect is the result of how our bodies react to what we believe in, either consciously or subconsciously, even when that is not necessarily the case. The saying, “If you think you can, you can, and if you think you can’t, you can’t,” is quite valid and shows just how powerful our thoughts, beliefs, and feelings (all closely related) can be and how they can impact, in a positive or negative manner, on our bodies.

I believe that any foods that produce an enjoyable feeling may be useful in combating depression, anxiety and stress. So what may be beneficial foods for one person may not have the same impact on another. It is the enjoyment gained from eating that matters most as it is this feeling that triggers our neurons to release neurotransmitters such as seratonin, which is our body’s narural opiate.

Food and drink with a high GI [glycemic index] rating also provide us with a relatively quick burst of energy that can make us feel better.

Unfortunately, the benefits of eating foods with a high GI rating give a quick fix of short duration. The refined sugars and fats are considered to be empty calories as they provide the rapid, unsustained, release of energy. When this energy dissipates a period of lethargy follows. When this occurs you will often get an urge to eat more of the high GI foods to increase your energy levels and replenish feelings of well-being again. Eating low GI food and snacks will provide a gradual release of energy that prevents the “yo-yo” effect, or highs and lows, associated with high GI foods.

It is not only the highly refined foods that have a high GI rating; sodas are right up there with them as sodas invariably have a high sugar content, especially sports drinks.

If necessary, a compromise may be to eat a banana [high GI] to get a quick impact plus a few almonds [low GI] as a snack to obtain a sustained benefit.

Everything needs to be taken in moderation, even natural cures for depression. Take care, as too much chocolate, caffeine, or sodas may result in weight gain that could have the opposite effect and cause depression. Luckily, you can enjoy some chocolate and keep your weight under control as it is claimed that only small amounts are needed to produce the desired effect.

Whilst eating your favorite foods may improve your mood substantially, a shift away from negative thoughts, may be all that is needed to correct the “chemical imbalance” that many medical practitioners quickly blame for states of depression and anxiety etc? You may end up being a happier person without the need to resort to drugs that have dubious benefits and may result in a life long addiction to them!

“You Are What You Eat” applies to depression

December 18, 2007 By: John Category: Depression Facts, Good Mood Foods, Natural cures for depression, Overcoming depression, Recovery from depression

There may be some truth to the adage “You are what you eat.”

Do you happen to be moody or depressed, in need of revitalization and energy, or notice your behavior and mood changes from day to day? For example you may feel on top of the world one day whereas on other days you feel like you are at the bottom of a pit. Then your mood and energy levels may be related to your diet.

It has been demonstrated that what you eat affects your mental functioning and, by choosing foods wisely, you may be better able to stabilize your emotional and mental health. Just as putting the right fuel into your automobile is very important, [You would not like the problems associated with diesel fuel in a gasoline tank.] putting the right food in your body may make the difference between a happy day and a grumpy day, and it may improve your overall performance.

Food can make us feel good. There is no doubt about that as many people eat food for pleasure more than for nutritional needs. The food we eat has the ability to alter the production or release of neurotransmitters within our bodies. These neurotransmitters are chemicals that the body uses to relay, amplify and modulate the transmission of our thoughts and actions to the brain, and other tissues such as muscles, via interfaces, known as synapses, between nerve endings [neurons]. There are very many neurotransmitters doing a variety of jobs.

Some examples of neurotransmitter action:

  • Acetylcholine – voluntary movement of the muscles
  • Norepinephrine – wakefulness or arousal
  • Dopamine – voluntary movement and motivation, “wanting”, pleasure, associated with addiction and love
  • Serotonin – memory, emotions, wakefulness, sleep and temperature regulation
  • GABA (gamma aminobutyric acid) – inhibition of motor neurons
  • Glycine – spinal reflexes and motor behaviour
  • Neuromodulators – sensory transmission-especially pain

It is important to appreciate that it is the receptors on the ends of neurons that dictate the neurotransmitter’s effect. This will be expanded upon later when discussing addiction and withdrawal symptons and how they are caused.

The food we eat affects the neurotransmitters and thus our moods. These neurotransmitters also tell us when we are full, if a food is too hot, and how it tastes. There is a theory that the nutrients in foods are precursors to the neurotransmitters, deciding how much of the neurotransmitter is produced. Foods are made of many nutrients that interact together and this can complicate matters. This is also why some foods produce natural reactions, and maybe even remedies, that commercial extracts from the food, or synthesized chemicals, are unable to mirror.

Physiological and psychological interactions make up the mood-food connection. It may be that a food is comforting because it reminds us of a pleasurable association with family meals while growing up. It may be the temperature of the “comfort” food, like warm hot chocolate, that is the comforting element helping you to relax or fall asleep.

It is interesting that a little warm milk before bedtime also increases the levels of seratonin. As mom may have told you, it helps you to sleep. Serotonin is a derivative of tryptophan, which is found in milk. The “warm” part is just for comfort!

More about mood foods in the next post.