Many people think that depression is synonymous with sadness. But clinical depression is so much more than simply feeling sad.
If you’re struggling with depression, you might experience a wide range of physical symptoms. Some days, you may suffer from headaches and digestive issues. You might toss and turn at night and then find it difficult to get out of bed during the day.
And worst of all, some days depression can completely sap your energy, making it hard to do anything that would lift your mood. When depression has got you down, here are a few natural remedies to boost your energy and help you make it through the day.
Stretch Your Legs
Working out releases dopamine, which is why exercise is an important part of a depression treatment plan. But on those days when depression makes it feel like you can only handle the bare minimum, going to the gym can sound like torture.
Thankfully, you don’t have to lift weights or hustle on the treadmill to get some of the benefits. Taking a relaxing stroll around your neighborhood and getting outside can be just as beneficial but won’t be nearly as strenuous. Stroll at your own pace, soak up some sun, and stop to smell the flowers.
An intense, hot yoga class would be overwhelming when depression has you completely bogged down. But you can easily take time to do some gentle yoga at home. In fact, there are plenty of easy yoga poses that you can do while chilling out in bed.
Nowadays, there are so many free yoga classes available on YouTube that you don’t have to spend a penny on practicing. Put on something comfortable and loose, take a few deep breaths, and start stretching!
Take Your Vitamins
Taking one or two vitamins won’t cure depression, but this little change to your wellness routine might make a bigger difference than you would expect. While a lack of Vitamin D won’t cause depression, it can definitely exacerbate the symptoms and make you feel sluggish.
If you know you don’t spend much time out in the sun, talk to your doctor about supplementing Vitamin D. Taking a B-complex vitamin can also help—low levels of B Vitamins are actually correlated with depression. Getting enough B12, in particular, is essential for your neurological health.
If you’re currently not taking antidepressants, you may want to research a few different herbals teas that are proven to help alleviate symptoms of depression and boost your mood.
St. John’s Wort is one of the most widely researched herbs, and studies have shown that drinking this tea is more effective for treating depression than a placebo, and thankfully, there are minimal negative side effects.
Early research on hibiscus tea indicates that this fruity beverage also has mood-boosting properties. Just need a little more energy? You can always reach for a mug of green tea.
Boost Your Brain Health
Eating a diet rich in healthy fats and protein—and going easy on refined carbohydrates—can help you feel more energized and productive on a daily basis. It’s tempting to reach for pasta, ice cream, or other comfort foods when depression knocks you down, but a carb binge will only make you feel worse.
Omega-3 fatty acids are especially crucial for optimal brain health. If you’re worried that you’re not getting enough through your diet, try consistently taking omega-3 supplements. Supplements won’t make your symptoms disappear overnight, but you may notice a positive change within a couple of weeks.