Mental illness is a modern epidemic. It can affect anyone of us and more than half of adult Australians are affected by it at some stage.
Here are some often-unknown facts about mental illness and some natural therapies that can help.
There can be physical causes of mental illness- inflammation can cause depression, toxoplasmosis a type of parasite caught from cat faeces or undercooked meat has been implicated in schizophrenia, depression can be a symptom of an underactive thyroid and bipolar a misdiagnosis of hyperthyroidism.
Obesity increases your risk of depression.
Caffeine, alcohol and sugar increase anxiety and panic attacks.
Recreational drugs can induce schizophrenia in susceptible individuals.
Low magnesium levels can intensify the stress response, it can also create cramps, headaches and muscle tension.
In a recent study from Poland people with acute episodes of depression were shown to have low levels of zinc and magnesium.
Omega 3 triglycerides (fish oils) are essential for maintaining healthy mood balance. In fact fish oils when used in conjunction with anti depressants increase their absorption and effectively make them work better.
Eating a well balanced diet and including protein at every meal helps control anxiety.
B Vitamins support a healthy mood and improve energy production.
The herb St John’s Wort is an anti depressant, without the side effects!
Eating every 2-3 hours can reduce anxiety by keeping your blood sugar levels controlled.
Insomnia aggravates anxiety and mood disorders, good quality sleep is imperative.
Yoga, tai chi, massage and walking can reduce sympathetic nervous system overactivity and help manage symptoms.
Acupuncture can be effective in reducing panic attacks, anxiety and depression.
Excess stress is commonly the start of mental illness, it is important to know how you cope with stress and what to do when it comes into your life.
Give yourself extra time to go for a walk, eat properly, have that massage. Looking after yourself when under stress can be the dividing factor between coping and things getting out of control.
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