View Full Version : Depression-The Way Out (Naturally)

03-17-08, 12:31 AM
Last fall I attended an eight week course that met once a week called Depression: The Way Out created by Neil Nedley, MD. I didn't think I was depressed going into the course, and I still came out feeling better than I had in years -- better cognitive skills, better affect, better focus! I wanted to pass along some of the main points he taught in hopes that it will be useful to others. According to Thomas Brown in Attention Deficit Disorder, folks with ADD are three times more likely to deal with depression than non ADD folks.

In the research they've done on the success of this program, they've found that in 20 weeks 90% of the people dealing with depression (uni polar, not bipolar) were able to under their doctor's supervision get off their depression medication successfully and without a return of their depression.

Nedley discussed the 10 "hit" categories that lead to depression. He said if you just have a couple you won't usually end up depression (ie: genetic and childhood factors), but when most people have four "hits" they end up depressed.

The "hit" categories are:

1. Genetic
2. Developmental
3. Nutrition
4. Social
5. Toxic
6. Circadian rhythm
7. Addiction
8. Lifestyle
9. Medical condition
10. Frontal lobe

(To keep this from being overwhelming long, I'm going to break it up in sections.)

03-17-08, 01:02 AM
Scattered, thanks for the timely Cliff notes. I know I'd still be outlining my thread for 2 years before posting (if at all)! :cool:

03-17-08, 01:03 AM
1. Genetic

a. Family history of depession or suicide

2. Developmental

a. History of depression in adolescence
b. Early puberty in girls (period before age 12)
c. Not being raised by both biological parents
d. Sexual abuse

3. Nutrition

a. Low dietary tryptophan
b. Low omega-III fat intake
c. Low folic acid intake
d. Low vitamin B intake
e. Diet high in cholesterol, saturated fat, and sugar

4. Social

a. Absence of social support
b. Negative, stressfullife events
c. Low social class
d. Grandparents who raise grandchildren
e. Immediate family member is an alcoholic or drug addict

5. Toxic

a. High lead levels
b. High mercury levels
c. High arsenic, bismuth, or other toxin levels

6. Circadian Rhythm

a. Regular insomnia
b. Sleeping more than 9 hrs/day routinely
c. Sleeping less than 6 hrs/day routinely
d. Not having regular hours for sleeping and eating

7. Addiction

a. Alcohol
b. Smoker or tobacco user
c. Heavy caffeine user
d. Illicit drug user (such as marijuana)

8. Lifestyle

a. Not on a regular exercise program
b. Not regularly being in daylight 30 minutes a day
c. Rarely breathing fresh air

9. Medical Condition

a. Hepatitis C
b. Recent head injury
c. Stroke
d. Heart disease
e. Terminal cancer
f. Parkinson's disease
g. Uncontrolled diabetes
h. Postpartum severe stress
i. Premenstrual tension syndrome
j. Inadequately treated thyroid disease
k. Lupus
l. Inadequately treated adrenal gland disease

10. Frontal Lobe

a. On low carbohydrate diet
b. On high meat or high cheese diet eating lots of rich food
c. Regular entertainment TV viewer or movie goer*
d. Entertainment internet or chat internet addiction*
e. Frequent sexual arousal outside marriage
f. MTV or other rock/country music viewer* (classical is great for the brain)
g. Undergoing hypnosis or Eastern meditation*
h. No regular spiritual study or abstract thinking
i. Going against your conscious

* Before you shoot the messenger or try to debate this with me, let me explain a bit. He showed research studies indicating the effects these things have on the frontal lobes of the brain. I'm not interested in debating this just passing it on so you can take what you find of value and leave what doesn't fit for you. If you'd like more information on his research, he has a book out called Depression the Way Out by Neil Nedley, MD or you could order the power point presentations on CD-ROM from Nedley Publishing (888)778-444 or (530)226-8007 or ( I'm not connected in any way with this organization other than having been a student and benefiting from the program.

03-17-08, 01:10 AM
What seemed to help me the most:

I was already doing the Omega III's though I bumped them up from 2000 mg a day to 3000 mg as well as adding ground flaxseed to my cereal in the morning.

I also began including was classical music (I'm not super keen on classical music, so I got the Baby Mozart and similar ones and found they were light enough and enjoyable as well as relaxing for me).

I gradually quit caffeine (which was a struggle since I like it a lot) and was amazed at how high and consistent my energy levels were.

I started going to bed and getting up earlier.

I began getting outside more in the sunshine each day.

I began regularly exercising 1/2 an hour a day.

I began reading my Bible regularly.

I began doing deep breathing (3+ deep breaths) a number of times a day.

I cut back on my TV and computer time.

Anyway, some combination of those things really helped me. I felt better than I had on any medication and life felt really good. I shared this because I've slipped a bit and want to get back on track and this is a good reminder to me, plus I promised someone here that I'd share this.

Take care!:)

03-24-08, 01:56 AM
Melatonin is responsible for "fix and repair" work. Sleep before midnight is valuable in fighting depression because melatonin is thought to protect against free radical damamge, enhance the immune system, assist in coping with stress, and increase the ability to experience pleasure.

You must have darkness for melatonin to rise (as soon as daylight comes it drops dramatically). Even a couple of hours later in going to bed drops your overall night total signficantly. A study at Brigham Young found that "early to bed - early to rise" was strongly correlated to higher GPA.

The pineal glad draws tryptophan an amino acid from the blood. Tryptophan is converted to serotonin (this change is light-dependant). Serotonin is converted to melatonin -- this step required darkness, sufficient calcium, and Vitamin B-6.

Foods high in melatonin include: oats (the highest), corn, and rice. Ginger, tomatoes, bananas, and barley also have some.

Caffeine cuts melatonin production in half for six hours. Alcohol can reduce production up to 41%. Tobacco also reduces melatonin peak. Sleep aids, NSAIDs, Beta & Calcium Channel Blockers, Anti-anxiety drugs, Vitamin B-12 (3 mgs/day), and anti-depressants all reduce melatonin levels.

Habits that increase melatonin include: increased exposure to natural light; sleeping in complete darkness; foods rich in melatonin, tryptophan, and Vitamin B-6; fasting -- especially in the evening hours.

03-24-08, 02:04 AM
Low carb diets cause depression? Hallelujah! Thanks, Scattered.

Oh. Confession time. When you listed "Toxic", I didn't think of heavy metals, I thought of people.

03-24-08, 02:11 AM
Low carb diets cause depression? Hallelujah! Thanks, Scattered.

Oh. Confession time. When you listed "Toxic", I didn't think of heavy metals, I thought of people.Yeah-- he really hit the fallacy in the low carb diet as far as mental health went pretty hard.:)

And the toxic would certainly apply to people too!;)

03-24-08, 02:42 AM
Yeah-- he really hit the fallacy in the low carb diet as far as mental health went pretty hard.:)

And the toxic would certainly apply to people too!;)You know, this really reinforces the importance of listening to our bodies. We talk of "comfort food" and that's often carbs and we need them for a reason.

What was the name of that diet where you could eat all the meat and protein your heart desired (groan), but no carbs? My husband thought he had died and gone to heaven because he lost weight and could eat as much as wanted of his favorite foods. He got so grouchy, I remember our daughter giving him a look and telling him to eat a bun. Someone I worked with told me how she lost fifteen pounds in no time on the same diet, but eventually couldn't sleep. Now if that isn't a recipe for disaster.

03-24-08, 04:03 AM
The trick with the carbs is that they need to be complex carbs that don't burn up in an hour and leave you hypoglycemic and hungry again. They've found that the thinnest groups of people on earth eat the most carbohydrates.

Carbohydrates are Brain Food! Since our brains don't store carbohydrates they need a steady supply. Slow release like whole grains, etc are best.

04-19-08, 07:36 PM
I have to write an aside as far as low carb diets are concerned:

I never subscribed to the hard-core low carb -- mine was more of a controlled carb where I cut out all REFINED sugar, flour, etc (or 99%, I did have a *little* occassionally); I cut out even diet soda (I never could cut out the ketchup, though, even though it's loaded with sugar), and I always ate all I wanted of fruits and vegetables. Very little bread, cereals, etc. I was also taking about 5-6 grams of omega 3s every day.

It worked WONDERS for my ADD and my depression, as well as my weight (I'm relatively small anyway but I was very thin and ate as much as I wanted -- the trick is that it adjusts your hunger mechanism so you don't crave food or even think about it that much).

I still can't figure out why I quit doing it. Then again, I felt wonderful eating 1500 calories a day on Weight Watchers after my baby (I had 30 post-baby pounds to lose) so maybe I have some blood sugar or food sensitivity issues.

04-19-08, 08:42 PM
Imnapl: The Adkins diet. Watching people eat that diet made me wanna puke ... watching their behavior after they were on it for a while made me regurgitate!

Scattered: Just curious, who are the thinnest people in the world? Anorexics, starving kids in Darfur, supermodels, genetic "toothpicks," etc.? Also, who are "They" that have concluded that, and where's "their" study? I'm curious because this has been an ongoing debate in the home ...

FYI, I think you will be interested in this article that covers, from a different perspective, many of factors touched upon above:

04-19-08, 09:22 PM

No harm to you but that just turns out to be an add for a magazine that you need to subscribe to to read the results of their finding. Sorry but that feels like a bit of a con to me.