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Beating The Blues - Natures Way


Tuesday, October 21st, 2008 Beating The Blues - Natures Way

In many ways as a generation we are the overburdened with the stress factor. According to the charity Mind one person in five now suffers a mental health problem at some point in his or her life, says Mind, the mental health charity.

Arguably it is difficult to assess whether we are down in the dumps or suffering depression. Though according to Paul Farmer, chief executive of Mind, if feeling blue lasts more than a couple of weeks you probably have mild to moderate depression, which affects 9 per cent of the population. So you should seek professional advice and make positive changes to your diet and exercise. If that doesn’t work you may need medical treatment for chronic depression.

Do not despair there are lots of ways to allay milder conditions. Only last week we covered the merits of St John’s Wort as an anti depressant. Get out and be active.

On bright, sunny autumn and winter days, make sure that you go outside. Warm or sunny, but not hot, weather has a positive impact on mental health, equally Dr Paul Keller of Michigan University, found that the optimal temperature for a good mood was about 22C (72F) - about room temperature - with the good feeling decreasing if temperatures became significantly higher or lower.

It has also been suggested to maximise best use of weather is to stay out for at least 30 minutes. Any physical activity does not have to be strenuous. In a study conducted 2 years ago at the university of Texas subjects with clinical depression were asked to rest or walk at a gentle pace on a treadmill for half an hour. When their mood was tested afterwards both groups showed improvement.

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