Depression affects about 5% of people in the United States, about 14.4 million people. Women report having this condition more commonly than men. Conventional medicine treats this condition with toxic medications and/or talk therapy.
Medications commonly prescribed for this disorder appear to increase the risk for suicide, at least in adolescents. Talk therapy may or may not help; unlike C.O.R.E. Counseling most talk therapies focus attention on the past, which we can't change, instead of the future, which we can change.
Rather than aiming to get rid of depression, a truly holistic approach aims at awakening from post-hypnotic trances created by past experiences (especially trauma), kindling joy and creating a life of enchantment. Natural remedies and especially truly holistic healing can awaken true joy by addressing the physical, mental, and spiritual causes of this disorder, clearing away blocks while harnessing the greatest internal and extraordinary resources available to you.
A holistic approach to mood disorders involves addressing the physical, mental, and spiritual causes.
From a philosophical standpoint, depression manifests as the opposite of enlightenment. Words describing this condition include heavy, dark, and stuck. Treatment will aim literally at enlightenment...doing things that will make you feel light, bright, and in the flow of life.
Research shows that regular vigorous physical activity relieves depression and anxiety , working better than medications in many cases. Walking gets things moving, makes you feel lighter and in the flow. It also alters body chemistry, producing endorphins that raise your mood.
Food also affects mood.
Recent research has suggested that disturbed gut microbiome may contribute to depression. Absorption of endotoxin from gut bacteria may play a role in depression. Depression affects more women than men and gut-derived endotoxin exposure creates more brain inflammation in women than men. Moreover, relationship stress can increase endotoxin absorption.
In 2023, Walsh and colleagues reported "a greater protective role of a high-quality plant-based diet and lower depressive symptoms."
To improve your mood, eat fresh rather than processed foods, and focus on nutrient-dense whole plant foods. This will suppress gut bacterial overgrowth, and provide nutrients to support a healthy function of the nervous system, liver, and endrocrine system, all involved in maintaining a light mood.
According to Chinese medical theory, most affective disorder results from unrealized desires and unexpressed emotions, most commonly anger or frustration. The chronic frustration of desire and suppression of emotions results in stagnation of energy, blood, fire, food, and/or phlegm.
To clean up these physical stagnations that result from the emotional blocks, I use acupuncture and herbs.
For some people, a deeper healing will require awakening from post-hypnotic trances and enlightening your heart. This involves learning to identify and transform the trances one lives and learning to use your mind and inner and extraordinary resources to awaken your heart and serve your higher needs.
When we experience emotionally or physically painful events, we often go into a trance, or "space-out," in order to escape the pain to the best of our ability. If we have the same kind of painful experience over and over – for example, a frequently angry and verbally abusive parent – our minds are prone to develop a trance – a pattern of distracting thoughts and images – to escape from the pain. Once the mind develops this habit, any event that re-minds you of that past experience can trigger your mind to resume the trance. For example, if your spouse, friend, or even a stranger says or does something that re-minds you of a painful interaction you had in the past, this can trigger you to engage in thoughts, imagination, emotions, and actions that you adopted in the past to adapt to or escape the pain. These might damage your relationship with your loved one or make it difficult for you to get what you want out of life.
Hypnosis therapy (hypnotherapy) and mindfulness meditation can help you to break the mind's habit of entering these trances. This requires techniques you can learn and access from spiritual coaching, transformational hypnotherapy, and C.O.R.E. counseling, all services offered by Tracy Minton at our acupuncture and hypnotherapy office.
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