Archive for herbs

Herbs, Vitamins, and Lifestyles That Can Enhance Your Mood

Posted in Healthy with tags , , , , , , , , , on July 26, 2010 by rizkymygift

Feeling depressed, bad mood, or even suffer for severe mood problem? Though it might be normal but researcher said that too much worries will lead you to do something’s bad or even cause you easily get such bipolar disorder symptoms just like sadness, anxiety, loss of energy, hopelessness, difficulty concentrating and also suicidal thoughts. If you feel those all above symptoms, for sure you have to see your doctor but if you just suffer just a mild-moderate mood symptoms, you may try these all herbs and vitamins and also practise the lifestyles 🙂

1. St. John’s wort

One of the most touted herbs used for enhancing mood is St. John’s wort, a yellow-flowered plant containing many chemical compounds. “Even though the evidence is mixed, it’s better for St. John’s wort than for other herbs,” says Adriane Fugh-Berman, MD, associate professor, Complementary and Alternative Medicine Master’s Program, Department of Physiology and Biophysics at Georgetown University School of Medicine. Fugh-Berman says that trials in the U.S. have been oddly less positive than in Germany, where it is widely prescribed.

Extracts of this Hypericum perforatum L. have been recommended traditionally for a wide range of medical conditions. The most common modern-day use of St. John’s wort is the treatment of depression. Numerous studies report St. John’s wort to be more effective than placebo and equally effective as tricyclic antidepressant drugs in the short-term treatment of mild-to-moderate major depression (1-3 months).

Flowering Hypericum Perforatum L.

Around for centuries, St. John’s wort is commonly used today for sleep disorders, anxiety, and mild-to-moderate depression. However, an analysis of 37 clinical trials found that St. John’s wort may have minimal benefit for those with more severe forms of depression. Although more research is needed, St. John’s wort may also have the potential to reduce symptoms of anxiety, premenstrual syndrome (PMS), or perimenopausal mood changes. This herb is available as capsules, tablets, liquid extracts, and teas, a typical dose of St. John’s wort ranges from 900 to 1,200 milligrams a day, and it should be taken for at least one to three months to see the best effect.

2. SAMe (S-Adenosyl-L-Methionine)

Derived from an amino acid and also available from protein food sources, is another widely studied mood-enhancing substance that’s commonly used in Europe. SAMe has been studied a lot for depression. Although current trials are not conclusive, an analysis of 28 studies showed that SAMe produced statistically significant improvement in the symptoms of depression when compared to a placebo. However, improvements were not as noteworthy when compared with conventional antidepressants.

Henry Emmons, MD, a psychiatrist with the Center for Spirituality and Healing at the University of Minnesota and also an author of The Chemistry of Joy: A Three-Step Program for Overcoming Depression through Western Science and Eastern Wisdom suggests SAMe for those with a type of depression that produces low energy. He prescribes 400 to 800 milligrams daily, depending upon need or tolerance. The dose most often used for depression in clinical studies is 800 to 1,600 milligrams daily for up to 6 weeks.

3. Valerian.

Flowering Valerian Officinalis

An herbal remedy created from dried roots, often taken as a sleep aid and sometimes used for anxiety. Valerian is found in Europe and Northern Asian and naturally prefers damp fields, but will also grow in more dry places.Valerian is an erect perennial herb. Valerian roots consist of may white coloured erect root stocks or rhizomes. In spring, every plant forms one hollow stem. The leaves are arranged in pairs and consist of six to ten leaflets. During midsummer the valerian plant starts to bloom. The flowers are white to pink with a very unique but rather pleasant smell. The roots and other parts have a more strange and foetid smell. Cats do like this smell very much and enjoy to rub there noise against the valerian plant or dried roots.

Valerian is one of the most important herbal sedative. Valerian is a non-addictive tranquilliser that is used against sleeping disorders, restlessness and anxiety. Valerian seems only to work when taken over longer periods (several weeks). Studies have demonstrated that valerian extracts interact with the GABA and benzodiazepine receptors. Valerian is also used traditionally to treat gastrointestinal pain and spastic colitis.

4. Lavender.

Aromatherapy, essential oils, and teas use lavender to enhance relaxation and possibly help relieve anxiety and depression. There are actually many uses for lavender. It clams the nervous system, making it a sedative. It also reduces stress in the body with its anti-spasmodic qualities. When the body is relaxed, the mind can also relax.

A tea made of lavender can be consumed as a sedative. Lavender oil can be placed, a drop at a time, on the temples to relieve headache, or in the bath to relax. Other uses of lavender oil, mixed with water or other herbal oils, are to relieve joint pain, as an antiseptic, and to aid digestion.

But lavender’s most common use is in reducing stress and headaches. A good way to do this is with an eye pillow that you can make yourself.

5. Omega-3 fatty acids.

Found in cold-water fish and certain vegetable oils, and available as a supplement, omega-3 fatty acids are sometimes used to help depression. Emmons recommends a dose of 2,000 to 4,000 milligrams or more when taken for mood problems.

6. B vitamins.

Essential for cell metabolism and central nervous system maintenance. Emmons recommends a good B-complex or multivitamin to ensure plenty of B vitamins, which can help stabilize nerve cell membranes.

7. Vitamin D

Although not enough evidence exists to make any claims about the effectiveness of vitamin D as a mood enhancer, at least one study reported benefits from vitamin D in treating seasonal affective disorder, a form of depression that occurs during the winter months.

Change Your Lifestyle

Emmons says “If you look at the research on exercise for depression, it’s equal to or better than medication for depression — probably the best outright alternative treatment for depression.” Then, he recommends mild, rhythmic activities such as walking, biking, or jogging. “It may not be enough for a lot of people, but it’s a good place to start.”

How much exercise is enough to enhance mood? According to a study published in the January 2005American Journal of Preventive Medicine, three hours of moderate activity per week may do the trick.

Emmons also strongly recommends a variety of stress management techniques, such as learning meditation to self-regulate thoughts, called mindfulness.

Based on scientifically tested tools published in the Journal of the American Psychological Association, Even certain computer games can help create more positive thought patterns, MindHabits is one of example. It helps players reduce stress and boost esteem by training the mind to refocus the way it perceives the world.

So, enhance your mood 🙂

*as taken separately from various sources*

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