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Depression

Sadness, feeling down, and having a loss of interest or pleasure in daily activities are familiar feelings for all of us. But if they persist and affect our lives substantially, the issue may be depression. More specifically we can say that, depression (major depressive disorder) is a common and serious medical illness that negatively affects how you feel, the way you think and how you act. Fortunately, it is also treatable.

Most of us have experienced being down and out. Especially as adolescents, where we’re hit with physical, emotional, social and psychological changes all at once. And the stresses of school, relationships, and unrealistic expectations seem to be magnified a million times. According to international statistics, depression is an epidemic, with teenagers and youths in their early twenties being especially vulnerable. Almost 8% of teenagers are affected by depression, with suicide being the second leading cause of death among adolescents worldwide. Research has found that more than one third of young people who struggle with depression don’t seek help at all.

Causes of Depression

There is no specific one cause for depression rather it depends on a unique combination of an individual’s genetic temperament and environmental conditions. Few causes may count:

  • The brain’s physical structure or chemistry
  • History of depression in the family
  • History of other disorders (anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder)
  • Stressful, traumatic events (abuse, financial issues, death of a loved one)
  • Hormone changes (menstrual cycles, pregnancy)
  • Certain medications (sleeping aids, blood pressure medication)

Symptoms of Depression:

Males may experience symptoms as stated below:

  • mood, such as anger, aggressiveness, irritability, anxiousness, restlessness
  • emotional well-being, such as feeling empty, sad, hopeless
  • behavior, such as loss of interest, no longer finding pleasure in favorite activities, feeling tired easily, thoughts of suicide, drinking excessively, using drugs, engaging in high-risk activities
  • sexual interest, such as reduced sexual desire, lack of sexual performance
  • cognitive abilities, such as inability to concentrate, difficulty completing tasks, delayed responses during conversations
  • sleep patterns, such as insomnia, restless sleep, excessive sleepiness, not sleeping through the night
  • physical well-being, such as fatigue, pains, headache, digestive problems

 

Females may experience symptoms as stated below:

  • mood, such as irritability
  • emotional well-being, such as feeling sad or empty, anxious or hopeless
  • behavior, such as loss of interest in activities, withdrawing from social engagements, thoughts of suicide
  • cognitive abilities, such as thinking or talking more slowly
  • sleep patterns, such as difficulty sleeping through the night, waking early, sleeping too much
  • physical well-being, such as decreased energy, greater fatigue, changes in appetite, weight changes, aches, pain, headaches, increased cramps

Types of Depression:

There are many types of depression. Few major types are stated below:

Major Depression: Major depression is the most common type of depression. Often, people with major depression experience recurrent episodes throughout their lives.

Dysthymia: Dysthymia is a persistent low mood over a long period of time, even a year or more. It could be described as feeling like you’re living on autopilot.

Postpartum depression: Postpartum Depression occurs after giving birth. Mothers may feel disconnected from their new baby or fear that they will hurt their child.

Bipolar Disorder: Bipolar Disorder is also called Manic Depressive Disorder because it involves alternating between mania and depressive episodes. Bipolar disorder is different from depression, but it is included in this list is because someone with bipolar disorder experiences episodes of extremely low moods that meet the criteria for major depression (called “bipolar depression”). But a person with bipolar disorder also experiences extreme high euphoric or irritable moods called “mania” or a less severe form called “hypomania.”

Symptoms can include in bipolar disorder:

  • Feeling great
  • Having lots of energy
  • Racing thoughts
  • Little need for sleep
  • Talking very fast
  • Having difficulty focusing or having a short attention span
  • Hallucinations (seeing or hearing things that are not there)
  • Delusions (believing things that are not true)

Prevention

Depression has treatment and can be cured. It is common to combine medical treatments, medicines and lifestyle therapies. But we prefer prevention.

Stress: We must try to lead less stressful life. Taking too much stress can lead one in depression.

Sleep: Proper sleep is very important factors in mental illness. Irregular sleep can create many hormonal imbalances in our body that may lead one in depression too.

Exercise: Exercise offers a range of health benefits including helping prevent depression. Both high-intensity and low-intensity exercise is beneficial in this respect. High-intensity exercise releases the feel-good chemicals, known as endorphins, into the body.

Low-intensity exercise sustained over an extended period helps release proteins called neurotropic factors, which improve brain function and make a person who is exercising feel better.

Many people who are depressed have low motivation for exercise, so it is a good idea to start with 5 minutes of walking or doing an enjoyable activity and gradually increase the length of time over the coming days, weeks, and months

Healthy Family life: Healthy family life is very important. Good family bonding and good friends can stop one to get into the depression zone.

Healthy Diet:

The brain needs the right mix of nutrients to function properly. For healthy mind we should start consuming unsaturated fats by cooking with olive and adding nuts and seeds to meals

We must eat more whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, protein with tryptophan, found in fish, poultry, eggs, and spinach, oily fish containing omega-3 oils or taking omega-3 supplements at least twice a week. We must drink 6 to 8 glasses of water a day.

We have to limit the caffeinated drinks, such as coffee and soda. We must avoid alcohol and smoking.

Regular Consumption of foods like LICORICE/Yashtimadhu, Basil Seeds, Malabar Spinach, Green tea, basil leaf, Avocado, Chia Seed, Red beetroot, Olive, Mushroom, Centella Asiatica/ Thankuni, Ashwagandha, Sunflower Seed, Cauliflower can help in the prevention of depression .

There are a few foods we should consume regularly besides our meals to prevent the Depression:

Chia Seed

Chia Seeds (চিয়া বীজ) are very good sources of fiber and omega-3 fats, along with a number of other nutrients. Chia seeds are extremely rich in fiber, antioxidants and several other nutrients which make them highly nutritious for daily consumption.  “1 ounce (28 gm.) of Chia seeds ( চিয়া বীজ) contains:” Calories: 137 Fiber: 10.6 grams Protein: 4.4 grams […]

Sunflower Seed

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Red beetroot

Beetroots are a popular root vegetable used in many cuisines around the world. Beets are loaded with vitamins and minerals and low in calories and fat. They also contain inorganic nitrates and pigments, both of which have a number of health benefits. Apart from being used as food, beetroot is also used as a medicinal […]

Olive

Olive is a fruit that has a sour, tangy, salty taste and it is very tasty to eat with chilly and salt. People use olives to make oil, pickles and can use in various dishes like salad, sandwiches, vegetables, dal, etc. also. People have cultivated olive trees for more than 7,000 years, and they have […]

Mushroom

Mushrooms are a superfood, and one of the most health-promoting foods on the planet. Mushrooms are an edible fungus that can provide several important nutrients. The many kinds of mushrooms have varying compositions and nutritional profiles. Mushrooms are packed with nutritional value. They are low in calories, are great sources of fiber and protein. They […]

LICORICE/Yashtimadhu

Licorice is an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant herb. Yashtimadhu is an age-old herb that has been used for its exceptional health endorsing properties called mulethi or liquorice. It is an herb that is found in various parts of Asia and Europe. Apart from medicines, it is widely used as a flavoring agent due to the natural […]

Centella Asiatica/ Thankuni

Thankuni or Centella Asiatica is known as the Longevity Herb for its numerous health benefits. Centella Asiatica, also known as Gotu kola, remains an important part of Ayurveda practice. Known for its rejuvenating properties, Centella Asiatica has other beneficial effects on the body and mind.   Health Benefits: Centella Asiatica Prevents Nervous Disorders. Thankuni has […]

Basil Seeds

Basil seeds are extracted from the seeds of Ocium sanctum (Basil) plant which is black in color. The health benefits of basil seeds are numerous. They look similar to sesame seeds but are black. The type that you eat typically comes from sweet basil plants; which is the plant commonly used to season foods. It […]

Ashwagandha

Ashwagandha (অশ্বগন্ধা) is a plant. The root and berry are used to make medicine. Ashwagandha is used for arthritis, anxiety, bipolar disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), trouble sleeping (insomnia), tumors, tuberculosis, asthma, bronchitis, menstrual problems, hiccups, and chronic liver disease. It is also used to reduce the side effects of medications […]

Malabar Spinach

Malabar spinach is a popular tropical leafy-green vegetable. Malabar Spinach have some antioxidant properties and contains many vitamins & minerals. It contains vitamin C, vitamin A, calcium and, iron. The plant is low in calories and also has a high amount of protein in relation to its weight. Malabar Spinach is also a great source […]

Cauliflower

Cauliflower is a cruciferous vegetable that is naturally high in fiber and B-vitamins. Cauliflower is an extremely healthy vegetable that’s a significant source of nutrients. It also contains unique plant compounds that may reduce the risk of several diseases, including heart disease and cancer. Cauliflower is a cruciferous vegetable that looks like a white version […]

Green Tea

Green tea is a popular beverage consumed worldwide. In recent years, it has also gained popularity as a health drink. Green tea is made from non-oxidized leaves and is one of the less processed types of tea. It therefore contains the most antioxidants and beneficial polyphenols. Green tea contains a number of bio active compounds […]

Basil Leaf

Basil or Holy Basil leaf is an herb belonging to the mint family. Basil leaf offered benefits include reducing inflammation, and it is said to have anti-aging and antibacterial properties. There are a few types of basil plants. The most popular are sweet basil, lemon basil, holy basil, and Thai basil. Though there are some […]

Avocado

Avocados are a tasty fruit with a creamy texture and it grows in warm climates.It has a big stone like seed inside it. Health benefits of Avocado include improving digestion, decreasing the risk of depression, and protection against cancer. The avocado is a  unique fruit that can be use as salad, vegetable and fruit. While […]

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