Anita Kemp Ph.D. Blog

Ideas for a healthy body, mind and spirit.

DEPRESSION AND INFLAMMATION

Andrew Weil MD ha summarized new research about inflammation and depression. The marker of inflammatory disease is  C-reactive protein and things like rheumatoid arthritis is an inflammatory disease. In one study, it was found that C-reactive protein- is 46% higher in those who have depression compared with those who do not. When individuals are given medication to reduce inflammation, depression is reduced.  Of course, this is still in the investigatory stages and you don’t want to start taking anti inflammatory drugs at this point for depression. Dr. Weil recommends an anti-inflammatory diet which is all the good stuff – fruits, vegetables, whole grains, fish, nuts and seeds along with exercise.  He also suggested adding turmeric because it is a natural anti-inflammatory. It is always worth looking at diet and exercise if you have depression. It can make the difference.

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May 14, 2017 Posted by | Depression, health | | Leave a comment

Infection and Depression

There is a lot of new information about all the problems that chronic inflammation causes. One of the latest is that it can cause depression. Check out the article “Can Infection Give You the Blues” in Scientific American Mind May/June 2015. The general thesis is that stress can activate the immune system to be always on and this then causes inflammation. Inflammation causes the felling of depression. When you first get sick, you actually have symptoms like depression. You have low motivation, feel tired, lose your appetite, have trouble concentrating and tend to want to be by yourself. If this illness continues in the form of inflammation, then actual depression can set in. The usual psychological treatments are still good. And new treatments are being added. The Scientific American Mind article notes that diet and anti-inflammatory medications may be of help.

July 18, 2015 Posted by | Depression | Leave a comment

Gut Bacteria and Depression

Did you know that gut bacteria (of which there are approximately 100 trillion in your gut now) produce 95% of the body’s serotonin and the reduction of this chemical is a major factor in depression? The bacteria also produce and respond to other significant mood chemicals – GABA, norepinephrine, dopamine, acetylcholine and melatonin. Not only are the bacteria related to mood of depression but also anxiety. New research is changing the gut bacteria in mice and seeing shifts in their behavior which seems to be related to anxiety and depression.  Different bacteria create different mood states.

Other research is suggesting that leaky gut is related to depression. Leaky gut is related to regular use of antibiotics and pain killers, psychological stress, inflammatory disorders and other conditions. What does all this mean? Again it is found that there is a mind/body not a separate mind and a separate body. Taking good care of yourself physically yields benefits in terms of healthy emotions.

November 24, 2013 Posted by | Depression | Leave a comment

We are meant to be happy!

The article title is a statement from George Pratt and Peter Lambrou’s new book Code to Joy: the Four-Step Solution to Unlocking Your Natural State of Happiness. These are two California psychologists who have been applying acupressure techniques to emotional health for many years. In this book, they have digested it down to an easy formula that is very self-help. But don’t be fooled by its simplicity. This is powerful. They do cite some research on energy psychology (acupressure) for the more sceptical. The Code to Joy has 4 steps: identifying your self-limiting beliefs, rebalancing your energy system, releasing negative beliefs and installing new empowering beliefs and then anchoring them in for permanence. Take a look at a new trend in psychology that is based on the Chinese traditional Medicine System.

August 19, 2012 Posted by | Depression, Emotional Well Being | Leave a comment

Antidepressants and Women

Like so many other medications, the studies have focused on men and not women. The same is true for antidepressants. Studies did not like to use women because the hormonal cycles affect moods and would be difficult to control. Studies are showing that the SSRI antidepressants work best in the presence of estrogen. Women will do better on these medications than men BUT not after menopause. Postmenopausal women will do better on a ntoher kind of antidepressant – ones that target norepinephrine and dopamine. I have seen quite a few women in my practice who are puzzled that their Prozac stopped working after years of being successful. Well, this may be the reason. Check out the article on this in Scientific American Mind May/June 2010.  There will be more to come on antidepressants and the placebo effect.

May 24, 2010 Posted by | Depression, Emotional Well Being | Leave a comment