I was researching the term "depression" today on the internet. My best friend has been depressed for the past couple of weeks and I wanted to find out some natural remedies for her. I ran across a quiz to evaluate your risk for depression on the WebMd.com site. The study displayed was funded by Lilly USA.
I decided to take the following ten question quiz subtitled Could You be Depressed? thinking it could be helpful to know my potential for depression and give me more information that I could share with my friend. The quiz statements are shown below in italics and my comments and answers in the standard font.
1. I feel sad of down most of the time. My daily life is fulfilling and productive, so I said NO.
2. I've lost interest in the activities I used to enjoy. I enjoy all my hobbies and interest and continue to expand my range of activities, so I said NO to this question too.
3. I feel tired almost every day. Being on my antiaging remedies and therapies, I feel very energetic and have lots of energy. I said NO to this.
4. I have problems sleeping. I'm either sleeping too much or staying awake at night. I said NO to this question. I fall asleep readily and sleep at least seven to eight hours straight. If I wake up during the night, I can fall asleep again right away. So, I said NO to this.
5. My appetite has changed. I'm not eating enough, or I'm eating too much. My appetite has stayed at a healthy level. I eat lots of raw fruits and vegetables. I'm taking in nutrients, no calories, so I said NO.
6. I have trouble concentrating. I take 240 mg of Ginkgo Biloba Extract, 1,000 mg of Phosphatidylserine (PS) and 30 mg of Vinpocetine daily. I am alert, attentive and focused. I said NO to question six.
7. My friends say I'm acting different. I'm either anxious and restless or lethargic. My friends have always said that I'm calm and steady and that hasn't changed, so I said NO to this.
8. I feel worthless or hopeless. I was starting to feel like this study was trying to prey on my deep-seated insecurities. I gave this question careful and extended thought, but couldn't come up with one reason I should feel worthless or have no hope. Even with the economy tanking and possible global warming, I feel optimistic about the present and the future. So, I said NO to question eight.
9. I'm having frequent headaches, stomach problems, muscle pain, or back problems. I eat well, stretch and workout 4 days a week. I walk about 30 minutes every night and swim in the ocean as much as I can, so I'm relaxed and cope well with stress. I don't have headaches, stomach or muscle pain. Through chiropractic treatments and doing Tai Chi, my back problems are a thing of the past. I said NO.
10. I find myself thinking a lot about dying. No. I find myself thinking a lot about living and finding ways to increase the quality of my life and the lives of others through my writings and my new book.
I felt really good about myself after taking this quiz. They had asked some probing questions and were concerned about whether I had experienced conditions that could come up as I age. I was quite pleased that I could answer no to these ten questions. Now, for the moment of truth. I clicked on the submit button to see my results:
"Rate Your Risk for Depression -- Your Results
You may be at risk for major depression.
You replied that you are feeling four or fewer of the common symptoms of depression. In general, people experiencing depression have five or more common symptoms of the condition. But every individual is unique. If you are concerned about depression, talk with your doctor.
Depression shows up in many different ways. People often lose interest in favorite activities and feel sad or hopeless. They may also have sleep problems, gain or lose weight, feel irritable or angry, or be in physical pain for unexplained reasons. Feeling guilty, anxious or having difficulty concentrating are also common signs of depression. Fortunately, there are many ways to treat depression, and more than 80% of people treated for depression improve within a year."
What! I had answered NO to all ten questions, yet they were still counseling me that I could be at risk for major depression! Coincidently, just to the right of the results was an ad for Cymbalta(TM), you know, just in case I felt the need to be medicated, despite the fact that I exhibit not one symptom of depression.
As the day went on, I started to consider the possibility that I could be even happier, feel more worthy, and have even more hope. My friends would comment that I have changed. They would tell me I'm better than I was before. I decided to look at what Cymbalta(TM) could do for me. At http://www.cymbalta.com, I found that I could expect "unusual changes in behavior, thoughts of suicide, agitation, panic attacks, difficulty sleeping, irritability, hostility, aggressiveness, impulsivity, restlessness, or extreme hyperactivity." The site recommended that while taking Cymbalta(TM), I should tell my healthcare provider:
"if you have itching, right upper belly pain, dark urine, yellow skin/eyes, or unexplained flu-like symptoms, which may be signs of liver problems. Severe liver problems, sometimes fatal, have been reported
if you have high fever, confusion, and stiff muscles to address a possible life-threatening condition...
if you experience dizziness or fainting upon standing, especially when first starting Cymbalta(TM) or when increasing the dose. Your healthcare provider may periodically check your blood pressure while you are taking Cymbalta(TM)."
Other possible side effects are "mild to moderate nausea, dry mouth, sleepiness, constipation, decreased appetite and increase sweating. They mention that there are more side effects that will be given to you by your healthcare provider or the pharmacist when you actually fill your prescription. Wow, I can't wait for this.
I carefully weighed all the information given to me and decided that I would not gamble my current level of happiness, feelings of self-worth and hopefulness for the possibilities that Cymbalta(TM) held out to me. I started wondering why people suffering from pain and depression are not seeking root causes and nutritional remedies and the simple emotional lift of exercise.
Cymbalta(TM) is also being marketed as a medication for diabetic peripheral neuropathy, for fibromyalgia, back pain, pain after surgery and, get this, depression from bereavement. Eli Lilly would like you pay for a Cymbalta(TM) prescription and take it for 8 weeks or more, rather than allow you to go through the natural grieving process after losing a loved one. Considering all the side effects and the dangers of withdrawal - rage, psychotic disorders, and suicidal thoughts - it seems that Eli Lilly has set aside compassion for human suffering in the interests of company profits.
I went to coreynahman dot com to view the antidepressant drugs data base and found that the Cymbalta(TM) capsule from Eli Lilly was expensive. A 60 mg capsule (maintenance dose) will cost you about $3.35 per pill. (That is over $100.00 per month.) Patient forums on the internet frequently report that, over time, they need to take higher doses to get the same effect, so that cost per month can also grow.
There are many references to natural remedies in my book that pertain to depression. On page 24, you can learn how DHEA supplementation helps with depression. Take 25 mg of DHEA in the morning and one at night for the cost of $ .16. On page 62, read about Ultra H3. Two tabs per day will cost you $1.10. Go to page 350 and learn how vitamin D3 stops depression in its tracts. Take two drops per day for a cost of $ .14.
Gotu Kola is a natural substance that helps depression. Take one capsule per day for a cost of $ .10. Then, on page 484, learn about Toco-8. One serving will cost you $ .50 per day.
If you add up the costs all of these natural remedies, the total cost per day comes to $2.16, saving you over $35 per month versus Cymbalta(TM) and here is the good thing. There are no side effects with these natural remedies and they will add much more value to your health and the effectiveness of your immune system.
The thing to realize is when you are depressed, you do not have a Cymbalta(TM) deficiency. You might have other nutrient or a vitamin D deficiency but those can be corrected naturally without all of the horrible side effects you get by taking Cymbalta(TM).
All depression is not caused by poor nutrition, but it certainly contributes in many cases, and research has shown that inadequate nutrition-a lack of minerals and vitamins-will always make a depression worse.