How Can I Fight Depression?

Abbey Asks...

"Looking for something natural that might help with depression . Not severe and not all the time, but I have days where I can't stop crying. I heard St John's Wort is good. Thanks for any recommendations!! "

Hi Abbey,

Mood changes are really common during menopause. We often underestimate how much of an impact our hormone levels have on our mood, digestion, sleep, etc. However, once things move into an unbalanced state it becomes very clear just how crucial this is!

Considering how you’ve described your experience so far I think there are some fantastic natural options that you can think about! So let’s look at a few in more detail:

St. John’s Wort : this herb is commonly used to support mild/moderate depression as research has continued to show that in these cases it’s as effective as prescription antidepressants and has less side-effects. In menopause, not only can it help with depression and mood changes, but it seems to have a significant impact on helping women manage hot flashes and insomnia. However, all the research is done on women who take it consistently for 2.5 years so this is a long-term support option. Also, St. John’s Wort has a lot of interaction with medications and supplements so ensure your health care provider has approved this for use.

Red Clover: What this herb has been shown to be helpful for is actually mood changes related to menopause. While it has shown some benefit for hot flashes, it’s often only a treatment I recommend if a woman is struggling with depression and anxiety during menopause. If you are noticing you have more anxiety, this is a great treatment to consider. This is a gentle herbal option, making it a great addition to other treatments you may already be using

Maca : this option is what I think of a whole body support. If you are finding that your energy is lower than it used to be this is a great option to consider. Maca has been shown to improve overall quality of life in menopausal women as it not only helps to support mood and energy, but it can also help with low libido. The gentle, supportive nature of maca makes it a fantastic herb to help you transition through menopause smoothly.

Yoga: I realize that most of the herbs I listed above take a few weeks before you start to see improvements in your symptoms so I think this is a perfect time to add in a wonderful lifestyle treatment! Hatha yoga (done 1-2 times per week) has been researched for menopause and it has shown to not only help with vasomotor symptoms, but it also helps with mood support.