Pavilion Family Medicine

6 Strategies to Eliminate Depression

Article from Dr. Mark Hyman and  Originally posted 09/18/15 on

If you’ve struggled with depression, has your doctor ever suggested pharmaceutical drugs? Did they help?  More than 100 million Americans – that’s literally one in three – struggle through life with a depression and pharmaceuticals are not always the answer.  

Conventional medicine fails to address what causes those feelings and why they differ from one person to the next.  Ultimately, drugs like antidepressants don’t cure the disease; they just mask the symptoms.  We don’t need to continue using these same drug treatments that don’t work, make things worse with side effects, or at best give partial relief. There’s got to be a more effective way.

And, there is.

1.  Eat whole, real food. Feed your brain and body with a nutrient-dense, whole, fresh, plant-based diet that includes plenty of protein and healthy fats. Your brain is about 60 percent fat, so it makes sense eating plenty of healthy fats (and including anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids) and protein can help heal your brain.

2.  Cut out sugar. If you’ve ever eaten something sugary, “crashed” a little later, and felt absolutely miserable, you know how sugar can contribute to depression. Studies confirm sugar consumption can contribute to depression. Become a detective and find and avoid hidden sources of sugar, which are more prevalent than you think.

3.  Exercise regularly. Studies show exercise is as good as, and even better than anti-depressants. You can find a comprehensive exercise plan here.

4.  Get enough sleep. Terrible sleep will only contribute to and exacerbate depression, so you want to aim for eight hours’ solid, uninterrupted sleep every night. Grab 19 of my top sleep tips here.

5.  Control stress levels. Constantly feeling stressed out becomes a surefire way to become depressed or stoke the fires of depression. Find what calms you and practice it regularly, whether that includes meditation, yoga, or just walking your dog. Many patients find my UltraCalm CD helps melt away stress and anxiety.

6.  Take the right nutrients. Many nutrients can alleviate depression and support optimal brain health, including omega-3 fatty acids and 5-HTP. I suggest working with an integrative practitioner to customize a nutrient program that works for you. You can find these and other nutrients in my store


These materials are not intended to treat, diagnose, cure or prevent any disease. 
All material on Pavilion Family Medicine Medial Blog is provided for educational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified healthcare provider for any questions you have regarding a medical condition, and before undertaking any diet, exercise or other health related program.