Summer Sun First Line of Defense Against Depression
By Donald Payne
Hello again, dear reader. And thank you, beloved mighty Helios, our precious sun, for blaze, blaze, blazing the heat of summer into our North Valley lives.
Our sun is our number one source of vitamin D in this world and without it we would all die. Oddly, because of our lifestyles and practices of avoiding sunlight, many of us are vitamin D deficient! If you cannot go out and enjoy the sunlight for whatever reason, please begin using Bluebonnet’s Vitamin D3 1,000 IUs or Bluebonnet’s Vitamin D3 2,000 IUs daily. So many people who come to see me are being tested by their doctors and are being found to have low vitamin D blood levels. Also, don’t overdo it, but go out in the sun more often and soak in the gifts of beloved mighty Helios.
Seeing so many young and older people enjoying summer activities is such a source of inspiration for me. The strength, growth, heat, energy, and light of the “yang” summer season are so powerful it is hard to imagine that for some people, in spite of all this, darkness and depression crowd into their minds.
Unfortunately for those seeking medical help, almost half of patients with major depression show only partial response, or no response at all, to the course of antidepressant medications typically given. The current medical practice is to either increase the dose, switch to another antidepressant, or to combine the initial antidepressant with a different antidepressant. (Can you say “side effects”?) Fortunately, a growing number of clinical studies have also been directed toward exploring the potential of augmenting traditional drug therapies with nutritional supplements or using supplements as the only therapy for depression.
One such supplement would definitely be omega-3 fatty acids. Dr. Emanuel Severus of Berlin University points out that major depression is characterized by a deficiency of omega-3 fatty acids and that these omega-3s also possess powerful anti-arrhythmic properties. He suggests that the missing link in the recently established association between major depression and sudden cardiac death may be the omega-3 fatty acid deficiencies that characterize both conditions. And the clinical studies go on and on. Please ask me for a copy of several studies on omega-3 fatty acids and depression as well as other studies using omega-3 fatty acid and other conditions.
When customers ask me which omega-3 supplement I use, I always go to Nordic Naturals. Its Ultimate Omega-3 is one of the most digestible and clinically studied omega-3s on the market.
Separately, many studies have reviewed the relationship between B vitamin deficiencies and depression and have linked several deficiency states as the cause. This is not surprising since the classic symptoms of some B vitamin deficiencies mimic those of depression—specifically vitamin B-12, folic acid, thiamin (B-1), riboflavin (B-2), and pyridoxine (B-6). The best way to supplement B vitamins for someone in a depressed state, especially someone on medication, is with Country Life’s CoEnzymated B Complex. Coenzymated B vitamins are blood ready—meaning they do not need to be processed by the liver before being used in the blood. All of the multivitamins we carry from Country Life also contain coenzymated B vitamins. So, usually, if you take one of Country Life’s multivitamins, such as its new CORE whole-food multivitamin and mineral, the coenzymated B vitamins are included. It’s nice to know, particularly if one may be dealing with a nutritional deficiency.
Another great supplement to help with a depressed state would be Source Naturals’ St. John’s wort, Positive Thoughts. The ingredients in Positive Thoughts support a good and healthy mood by helping to increase serotonin while providing mood-soothing herbs, calming nutrient factors, and uplifting amino acids. We also have Source Naturals’s SAM-e (s-adenosyl methione). SAM-e increases the levels of serotonin and dopamine in the brain, which are involved in mood, sleep, anxiety, and energy levelscall of which are commonly disturbed in depression.
On a lighter side, the growth of education and change, such as beginning new college programs or adapting to 105 degree temperatures in our beloved North Valley, does have its associated stress. Rainbow Light makes a great dietary supplement to help with adapting to stressful changes. It’s called Rainbow Light’s 3-Way Stress Management. Not only does it provide high-potency B complex vitamins, but it also provides a fast-acting herbal blend featuring California poppy and valerian root, traditionally used to promote relaxed calm and provide support for managing stress.
I love all of “Rainbow Light’s” supplements, partly because they all provide a food base, companion complementary herb blend, and vegetarian digestive enzymes to help digest the whole tablet and any food you eat with it. Rainbow Light, because of all that, always has well-thought out, well-digested, and well-absorbed formulas.
For this heat, dear reader, I love to puree fresh local fruit and add some delicious Bluebonnet Whey Protein Isolate. Yum! French vanilla flavor whey protein with pureed peaches and strawberries is a fresh nutritious treat. If you have to skip a meal during the summer (not winter), try it.
Finally—all the darkness in all the world cannot put out the light of one small candle, and since we are all, in the final analysis, recycled stardust, I encourage you all to Blaze! Blaze! Blaze! your own precious flame of life and annihilate any darkness that ever seeks to find a place in your life.
Blessings for a great summer,
S&S Produce & Natural Foods