Enhancing Antidepressants

Antidepressants are only effective for about one-third of people who take them. But new research has found that combining these drugs with certain supplements, including fish oil, could boost their positive effects and offer new hope for people struggling with depression. Scientists analyzed the results of 40 clinical trials that investigated the effects of pairing certain nutritional supplements with several major classes of antidepressants, including selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs), and tricyclic antidepressants. The naturally occurring compound SAM-e, vitamin D, and methylfolate all enhanced the efficacy of antidepressants, but omega-3 fish oils had the most dramatic effect, significantly reducing symptoms of depression, ScienceDaily.com reports. Researchers speculate that supplements help by easing inflammation associated with depression, or by targeting brain processes similar to those targeted by antidepressants. “This is an exciting finding,” says the study’s lead author, Jerome Sarris. “Here we have a safe, evidence-based approach that could be (Read More)

Antidepressants: The Scary Truth

30 million Americans take medication to treat depression, but for most people, antidepressants serve mostly as a placebo, scientists now say.  Antidepressants are medications meant to act on the chemistry of the brain to relieve symptoms of depression. Along with talk therapy, antidepressants can be wonderful in helping those suffering from depression live a more normal life. However, there are often side effects from the antidepressants. According to WebMD.com, side effects can range from nausea to sexual dysfunction among others. More medications are prescribed to deal with the side effects, and even those can cause side effects, or the original medication gets changed and adjusted and the cycle starts all over again. There also is the problem with serious interactions with other drugs you may be taking. For a more complete list, visit www.drugwatch.com. Some antidepressants (such as Paxil) have even been linked to birth defects when taken by women who (Read More)

Let’s Talk Stress [INFOGRAPHIC]

It appears that Americans are having a collective freak-out.  77% of all Americans suffer physical symptoms of stress on a daily basis. Fear and anxiety about politics and the future of the country are a significant source of stress for nearly two-thirds of adults in the U.S., new research has found. The American Psychological Association’s “Stress in America” survey paints a grim picture of the nation’s collective mental health. Nearly 60 percent of the 3,440 people polled say they consider the present day to be the “lowest point in our nation’s history that they can remember,” reports Fortune.com. Pessimism is highest among Democrats and Millennials, but also affects most Republicans and older adults who lived through World War II and Vietnam. “We’re seeing significant stress transcending party lines,” says Arthur Evans, CEO of the American Psychological Association. The uncertainty and generalized anxiety people have about the country, he said, “feels unique to (Read More)