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Has Primal Helped for Depression/Anxiety? Please share.

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  • Has Primal Helped for Depression/Anxiety? Please share.

    Hello All.
    I have a dear friend who is really suffering from depression and anxiety but these are subjects I find completely baffling. I have no idea where to start in trying to help. I have heard anecdotal evidence that PB has helped many people with these types of challenges. What I would like to do is gather all those bits and pieces of evidence together on one thread.

    If you are someone who has dealt with these issues, I would really appreciate it if you shared your story. If you have any links to external resources that might also help, that would be great too.

    Some basic info about my friend : male, late 40s, 15-20 underweight for his tall height. Lives on diet soda and eats breakfast cereal for dinner. Doctors have been trying various combinations of meds over many years to no avail. I'm not sure exactly what he's taking right now. I have talked to him about PB but he isn't convinced it would be any more effective than the meds.

    Thank you. I know that these topics are very personal and not easy to discuss for many people. If you could get past that to help someone else in the same boat, that would be very kind of you.

    Robin

  • #2
    I would start with Vit D3. Really helped me, way before I found Paleo, though I was already off gluten.

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    • #3
      And here's a source if you feel like doing a lot of reading:

      Evolutionary Psychiatry

      Comment


      • #4
        It helped me. I kicked my suicidal depression to the curb and it did lower, albeit not remove) my anxiety. For me, the culprit was gluten. Getting rid of that took care of so much of it. There's also a cognitive behavior book I have that helped me immensely. I will say that I can't really drop below about 30-50g carbs without it returning. I also take selenium, a multivitamin, and 5k IU vit D daily. Let me know if you need more detail tan that.
        Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, steak in one hand, chocolate in the other, yelling "Holy F***, What a Ride!"
        My Latest Journal

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Paleobird View Post
          male, late 40s, 15-20 underweight for his tall height. Lives on diet soda and eats breakfast cereal for dinner. Doctors have been trying various combinations of meds over many years to no avail.
          And what's wrong with this picture???

          Please, I'm not being a smartass - the poor man eats only non-food items and his idiot doctors are trying to fix that with drugs???? How could going Primal possibly not improve both his physical and mental health, in that order? I hope you can convince him to give it a try - I think it could go a long, long way toward changing his life - IF he wants it to change.

          I have a similar situation with my husband - depressed, miserable, zero joy in his life aside from fleeting superficial stuff but, he loves being miserable and absolutely revels in moping around and feeling sorry for himself. You can't help a person with that mindset, I hope your friend isn't in that camp.
          Last edited by LJH; 03-20-2011, 03:33 PM. Reason: Edit to add further thoughts

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          • #6
            YESSSS.

            Sugar and grains are the biggies, as far as using food culprits that jack with brain chemistry.
            Amino acid therapy handled/handles the rest. (+++)
            Exercise, particularly exercising outdoors.
            Sunshine.

            Books:
            "The Mood Cure" by Ross. She has a lot of experience getting folks off antidepressants and onto amino acids.
            "Depression-Free, Naturally" by Larson.
            "Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food." -- Hippocrates

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            • #7
              I totally agree and I've been trying to convince him of this. I just thought however that it might "sink in" better if it came from people who have BTDT experience in this area, not just from naturally happy and sunny me.

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              • #8
                Tell him I went from suicidal and 3 breaths from acting on it some, no, most days to a happy go lucky side of myself few had seen since I was in 6th grade. I went from a fear of being wrong, a deep need to be perfect and never achieving it (my variety of generalized anxiety) to a more accepting and free flowing version of myself. Unexpected change no longer sends me into a tailspin or a panic attack. Yes, part of this is my new ADD pills, but even before that, on Primal, I managed to get it down to a minute version of what it was. I do credit Primal (and Geek) for saving me from myself. Going away from Primal permanently is not an option, because the minute I start eating SAD/ CW, the depression and anxiety come back with a vengeance.
                Moreover, there is research out there (I'm too lazy to go dig it up) that indicated fake sugars (sucralose, equal, the pink packet) actually made at least depression and possibly anxiety worse. The blood sugar swings of CW eating wreaks havoc on a depressive, because thr low spots are so much lower than other people's.
                Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, steak in one hand, chocolate in the other, yelling "Holy F***, What a Ride!"
                My Latest Journal

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                • #9
                  My friend, who ate moderately well, adopted primal at the start of this year and it made her anxiety and depression much, much worse. I did some googling on the subject, and it does appear that low carb can exacerbate symptoms for some people. I wish I'd realized that ahead of time, so I could suggest she up the carbs a bit. Instead, it was such an awful experience for her that I doubt she'll give it another go
                  Liz.

                  Zone diet on and off for several years....worked, but too much focus on exact meal composition
                  Primal since July 2010...skinniest I've ever been and the least stressed about food

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by aktres View Post
                    I would start with Vit D3. Really helped me, way before I found Paleo, though I was already off gluten.
                    +1
                    Ancestral Nutrition Coaching
                    Pregnancy Nutrition Coaching
                    Primal Pregnancy Nutrition Article

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                    • #11
                      Thank you NK. I'm so glad you didn't act on it. This forum would be a lesser place if you had.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Paleobird View Post
                        Thank you NK. I'm so glad you didn't act on it. This forum would be a lesser place if you had.
                        If I can help one person learn a lesson an easier way than the way I had to learn it, then I'm doing something right.
                        And thank YOU, for trying to help your friend out. It takes a strong person to be on the other side of the depression wall and still be willing to help.
                        Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, steak in one hand, chocolate in the other, yelling "Holy F***, What a Ride!"
                        My Latest Journal

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I struggle with depression/anxiety at times, and I notice that Primal eating makes it pretty much go away. It removes that cloud from over my head.
                          "Carbs are the victim, not the crime" - ChocoTaco

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by highaerials36 View Post
                            I struggle with depression/anxiety at times, and I notice that Primal eating makes it pretty much go away. It removes that cloud from over my head.
                            That's an interesting way to put it. My friend said he has times when even making simple decisions seems so paralyzing that he just sits there and doesn't do anything. Has anybody else felt that way?
                            Last edited by Paleobird; 03-20-2011, 04:39 PM.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by highaerials36 View Post
                              I struggle with depression/anxiety at times, and I notice that Primal eating makes it pretty much go away. It removes that cloud from over my head.
                              Same here. If I eat a lot of gluten products, the brain fog comes back. That fog makes life really difficult for me, including making small decisions and just day to day functioning. I never realized how bad it was until I went PB. I always just thought something was inherently wrong with me.

                              Maybe your friend would try vitamin d, then switching to less inflammatory grains like rice to see if gluten is the problem? (small steps, that's how I got here)
                              Jen, former Midwesterner, living in the middle of nowhere.

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