Psychiatric disorders are becoming more and more prevalent in society and in people in all walks of life.
The 2007 Adult Psychiatric Morbidity in England study showed that nearly one person in four (23.0 per cent) had at least one psychiatric disorder and 7.2 per cent had two or more disorders.
Mental instability disables the sufferer leaving them unable to function in ordinary life and can lead to insomnia, apathy, suicidal thoughts, anxiety and hopelessness.
I prefer to call this period of inner turmoil a temporary imbalance. Something that can be corrected, bringing the body back in to stable equilibrium.
On diagnosis an anti-depressant will usually be prescribed to stabilise moods and treat the symptoms, but most doctors won’t investigate the probability of nutritional deficiencies or metabolic issues.
We are often lead to believe that our genes are to blame for depression and that because mental instability ‘runs in the family’ we too are most probably going to suffer the same fate. A susceptibility is possible but EPIGENETICS shows us that our DNA is not our destiny and can be influenced by lifestyle choices. Are the same habits just being picked up through the generations; similar food choices, attitudes, beliefs etc?
The emerging science of epigenetics is an empowering message that you are in fact not a victim but rather in charge and have the capability to improve your own health and well-being.
Unfortunately mainstream medicine rarely looks at a person suffering with depression as a whole but rather as a symptom and so begins a cycle of prescription drugs, often causing the patient to feel numb, detached and shell-like.
Why is depression in society increasing at such a fast rate?
21st century living has afforded us more and more opportunity and choice and yet as a nation we are suffering more stress and angst. Striving, feeling unfulfilled, work pressure, ingratitude, relationship breakdowns, poverty, illness and personal loss can leave a person feeling fragmented and broken.
Unfortunately there are also those who are sadly in environments that afford little opportunity for escape, to be educated in what health really means and to be nurtured back to full health.
‘Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity‘. ~World Health Organization, 1948
In the end it all comes back to the same point, that stress and turmoil cause magnesium waste and depletion of other vital nutrients that when optimal help retain emotional stability. This depletion is also why stress can leave you with reduced immunity as it ‘eats’ away at the body’s vital stores leaving one open to Dis-ease; lack of ease or harmony within the body.
COULD DEPRESSION BE CAUSED BY A MAGNESIUM DEFICIENCY?
Magnesium is an essential mineral which most people are now lacking in due to depletion in our soil, and so in our foods, and also because stress causes magnesium waste. Magnesium plays a major role in biochemical reactions all over the body and when magnesium becomes low it can cause cramp, arrhythmia, muscle twitching, insomnia, anxiety, depression, apathy, restlessness, manic behaviour, poor concentration, heart disease, seizures and even sudden death.
In an article entitled ‘Rapid recovery from major depression using magnesium treatment’ published in Medical Hypothesis 2006 it concludes with “It is likely that magnesium deficiency causes most major depression and related mental health illnesses, IQ loss and addictions. We suggest that magnesium deficiency as cause of these disorders is enormously important to public health and is recommended for immediate, wide-spread further study. The public should be advised to obtain more than 600 mg of dietary magnesium a day……….”.
Depression is associated with system inflammation and it turns out so is magnesium deficiency.
Another study published in the February 1985 issue of Biological Psychiatry, showed a relationship between suicide attempts and magnesium levels. Interestingly psychiatric patients who attempted suicide were found to have low magnesium levels compared to those who were not suicidal..These findings were consistent among all psychiatric disorders involved in the study, namely major depression, schizophrenia and adjustment disorder.
Lithium is the drug of choice for bipolar disorder and has been found to have similar chemical properties to magnesium which is often supplemented alongside Lithium and found to be effective for severe manic agitation.
Perhaps magnesium is something to be seriously considered in the treatment of low mood, anxiety and depression.
Often magnesium, a good quality B vitamin, sometimes with the addition of an optimal dose of Ashwaganda, has shown to have positive effects on the symptoms of depression and anxiety, but magnesium alone can be a very good place to start.
Always seek advice from a medical professional before beginning on a new regime.