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Worst Case Scenario - How Long Should This Take?

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  • Worst Case Scenario - How Long Should This Take?

    What I really want to know is: If you have had clinical depression and treated it successfully, how did you do it? If you take supplements for depression, what are they and how much are you taking?

    I've read tons of success stories where people switch to a primal livestyle and drop weight, feel great, blah, blah, blah. For me, none of that has happened and I'm barely able to keep my head above water.

    I was taking celexa, 20mg/day, for about a year and a half. I felt as though things had changed enough in my life that I didn't need it anymore, so I tapered off of it and I've been completely off of it for several weeks now. I've been trying to follow the PB since early December 2011.

    I am very depressed right now. It is impacting my job and my relationships. I can't focus and don't get anything done at work. At home I have zero motivation to do anything. I haven't made any jewelry in awhile, even though stones and other things I ordered and was previously excited about have arrived. Normally I would be happy/excited about that and start on something right away, but lately I don't care. I don't really care about work, either, even though I should. At home I barely move from the couch... I have no motivation to cook, clean, exercise, nothing. Doing anything social seems like too much effort.

    I have not lost any weight on this plan. None. I just keep cycling through the same 3 to 4 pounds.

    I've seen a functional medicine doctor and she told me I am insulin resistant and have adrenal fatigue. She wrote out some protocol to follow, but said I have to cure some viral infection first (couldn't tell me what it was, but prescribe a boatload of nonsense for it). I am taking a 12 capsules a day on her orders along with 2 tbsp of Vitamin D, some strange cream, and some sort of spray. It all seems like a big waste of time and money to me, but I already bought the crap, so whatever.

    I guess I just want to know when I might start feeling better. I feel terrible. This depression is killing me and I just don't want to feel like this anymore. How long is it going to take before I feel okay again? When will I have the energy or desire to do ANYTHING? Should I be on anti-depressants again, even though I just spent months getting off of them? I'm worried they will make losing weight harder.

    People tell me constantly not to obsess about weight. That is extremely hard to do when you've gotten so fat that all of your clothes pinch and are too tight. I physically feel the annoyance of this weight constantly. I just can't ignore it, even though I want to.

    I even have a vacation coming up (which is sure to interrupt my ability to take these stupid supplements since some need to be refrigerated and would't tolerate a 4 hour flight well, plus the whole no liquids on planes thing). I'm not looking forward to the trip. We're going to Mexico, to an all inclusive resort... not great for someone who isn't supposed to have alcohol, dairy, caffeine, fun, a will to live, etc. I was NOT like this 3 months ago. I was fat and unhealthy, but I wasn't suicidal like I am now. I was optimistic that if I worked hard, I would lose weight. Now I feel like I'm working very hard, but nothing positive is happening and my depression is out of control.

    Has anyone with depression found relief in this lifestyle? What can I do to get the depression under control aside from anti-depressants? I am so unhappy I want to scream. I can't handle life right now.
    Last edited by nikitakolata; 01-31-2012, 11:22 AM.

  • #2
    Wow it sounds like you have a lot going on at the moment. I know it is hard but this is not a "plan" but a lifestyle change. Can you give us an idea of your diet and your exercise routine please.
    Eating primal is not a diet, it is a way of life.
    Don't forget to play!


    • #3
      Maybe you should restart the Celexa and not discontinue it until the dietary changes have had a chance to work. I mean, everything about your words sounds like clinical depression.
      Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.


      • #4
        Originally posted by Dirlot View Post
        Wow it sounds like you have a lot going on at the moment. I know it is hard but this is not a "plan" but a lifestyle change. Can you give us an idea of your diet and your exercise routine please.
        Exercise is currently non-existant because I just have no desire to do anything. In previous weeks it was better, but lately all I'm doing is walking to and from work, which totals about 3 miles a day.

        Here is a typical day food-wise:

        Breakfast - Omelette with bacon, muchrooms and cheddar

        Lunch - Burrito bowl from Chipotle with roasted vegetables, chicken, mild salsa, medium salsa, cheese and guacamole

        Dinner - Chicken or steak with a vegetable (broccoli with butter, spinach, or sweet potato)

        Dessert - No sugar added coconut milk ice cream

        I am trying to cut out diet soda. I still have one some days (down from 4 or more). I've also cut out coffee in the last week (to avoid caffeine).


        • #5
          I'm going to suggest again that you check out "The Mood Cure" and "Depression-Free: Naturally". I used those as guidelines for my supplement protocol. How is your sleep? I started with 50mg of 5-HTP, once at dinner, and once at bedtime, and was able to sleep easier, more deeply, and started to see my depressive episodes reduce within a few weeks.

          I still struggle from episodes of depression and anxiety, but overall I am much happier and find it easier to interact with people and laugh regularly. I don't think you necessarily need to add back the medication, but if you are really feeling terrible, you might want to be on a low dose until you can stick to the diet for a few months and see if that helps. I took 5-HTP while still on Lexapro, though that's not advised, I was on a very low dose to reduce the risk of serotonin overdose. I think it helped with the transition off the Lexapro.

          Also I would ask what you are taking right now (the capsules that your doctor gave you/had prescribed). If it's some kind of antibiotic, you should get on a strong probiotic ASAP. Gut health is very strongly tied to mental health, just look up information on yeast and autism, or yeast and ADD. Apparently serotonin is also found in the gut, so having a properly working digestive system is important if you suffer from depression. I would also suggest that you cut out any sugar (you said no sugar added, but does it have sugar in it?), as that can severely impact moods.
          Depression Lies


          • #6
            Depression is hormonal imbalance and brain glucose metabolism malfunction.

            there are ways to get things under control fast ( the issues not exactly the depression, it will clear up as things get in order )
            However they are not easy, simple yes, easy depends on your drive.

            PM me and I will give you my suggestions, I wont post it here just yet.
            Optimum Health powered by Actualized Self-Knowledge.

            Predator not Prey
            Paleo Ketogenic Lifestyle

            CW 315 | SW 506
            Current Jeans 46 | Starting Jeans 66

            Contact me:


            • #7
              Thanks everyone for replying. I was really feeling horrible yesterday. Depression, for me at least, is a very confusing and overwhelming thing. In a single day I can be extremely depressed for several hours, and then go on to feel almost normal later on. Yesterday I was a complete mess, I couldn't stop crying at my desk (thank god I have a private office). My husband even sent me flowers because he knows how bad I have been feeling, which of course caused me to cry more...

              I have been taking 100mg of 5-HTP once a day in the evenings. I have no idea if that is helping or not, but I've been doing it for a few weeks. I also take 1000 IU of vitamin D3, but that probably is not enough to make any real impact. Just 2 days ago I started taking the 2 tbsp of vitamin D complex the doctor I saw prescrbied, which I think may actually be enough to do some good. I don't know for sure though.

              I am going to buy either fish oil or antartic krill oil today (depends what I can find) and start taking that. I'm not sure about these anti-viral supplements the doctor gave me. The pills are absolutely huge, for one thing, but the main reason I'm not so sure about them is that she could not even tell me what type of viral infection I had. Plus, the blood test was done about a month ago. I don't feel sick in any way; isn't it likely that whatever I did have has cleared up? I really hate taking pills, no matter what they are, so I'd rather take only things that I think I really need. Just the act of swallowing pills is something I've always kinda hated... I'm weird like that.

              Anyway, thanks again. I hope that yesterday was the last of my very bad lows. I cannot think clearly when I feel that way and it is just really stressfull, even phyically I can feel it. It is no fun at all.


              • #8
                I would try also taking 100mg of 5-HTP right before bedtime (or an hour before). Does it make you feel sleepy after taking it? How many IUs per serving of the complex your doctor prescribed? If you're quite low in Vitamin D, you need to supplement HIGH to build your levels back up.

                I am also curious how on-track you are with eating primal, as even small cheats can have a huge negative impact for people who are struggling with these kinds of things. Even one cookie could send me into a deep low early on, but I can handle sugar a bit easier now.

                I sympathize because I also have random lows even throughout the day sometimes. It is really difficult and I recognize those feelings in your earlier post. The most important thing is to keep going and keep trying, because you will find the right balance for you eventually.
                Depression Lies


                • #9
                  I looked at the bottles last night...

                  I'm taking about 3000 IU of Vitamin D twice a day now and the 5-HTP I have is 100mg. I have felt a lot better since my initial post, so I wonder if that is the vitamin D kicking in. I just started it on Tuesday.

                  Sleep is one area where I have never had problems really. I can pretty much sleep anytime, anywhere, and it feels like deep sleep to me. I'm always able to sleep, I would have no trouble going to sleep right now if I was in a dark room.

                  My primal eating is great during the workweek. I'm very good with it whenever I control the menu, basically. Unfortunately, if I go to any social event, then I don't usually have that control. Last weekend I had some crap on Saturday. I didn't feel great Sunday, but not awful. Maybe it was still from that night that I felt so bad earlier in the week, I don't really know.

                  This weekend I'm planning on just doing whatever I need to do to stay on the plan. I can't afford these crashes all the time.

                  Now, if anyone has any suggestions on how to handle an all-inclusive resort, I'd like to hear those. I planned the trip before I had discovered PB and I was really excited about it until recently. Now I'm very nervous that the trip is going to send me into another bout of major depression.


                  • #10
                    I asked if 5-HTP makes you sleepy because for me, I noticed it wasn't doing anything when it stopped making me sleepy. If it doesn't make you sleepy, it's possible it's not the right supplement for you. Tryptophan, St. John's Wort, and Sam-e are recommended to try, in that order. But these are really just guesses, you'll have to experiment to find what works for you.
                    Depression Lies


                    • #11
                      Sounds like you have fear. You should not be allowing any fear into your life. Fear is the mother of depression. You are complete. You do not need to make anybody happy. If you are afraid to fail or make a mistake or that you might be sad, then fear has already won. Try laughing more. Life is just a game. Take it too seriously and you become a puppet instead of a puppeteer. I was always on meds until I ditched them and embraced life for the meaningless quandry it is. They had me on Celexa, Welbutrin, Ritalin, and a few others. All I needed was Ecclasiastes. Sitting is a curse. Be a standing, walking being during all your waking hours as much as possible. This will also make you happy as you near the end of your day and realize how much you've accomplished.
                      Crohn's, doing SCD


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by namelesswonder View Post
                        I asked if 5-HTP makes you sleepy because for me, I noticed it wasn't doing anything when it stopped making me sleepy. If it doesn't make you sleepy, it's possible it's not the right supplement for you. Tryptophan, St. John's Wort, and Sam-e are recommended to try, in that order. But these are really just guesses, you'll have to experiment to find what works for you.
                        Ah, ok. Good to know, thanks!


                        • #13
                          I'm sorry you are struggling - hopefully things are getting better since your initial post.

                          I was in much the same boat as you about this time last year. I had had strep 5x in 4 months and was diagnosed with chronic inflammation and adrenal failure. MD wanted to take my throat apart. Was on antidepressants. ALL was a result of stress.

                          I learned that the body interprets all stress the same, so while some stressors I could not remove from my life at that time (work/family) some I could (dietary). So I started cutting things out of my diet that stressed my body. Sugar, then processed grains, then all grains once I discovered PB. My chiropractor gave me some Tyrosene spray and vitamin compounds to heal my adrenal system, and over the course of 6-8 weeks it all worked. THEN, I changed jobs, divorced my old life, started over, and THEN quit my antidepressants. It was hard going for about 6 weeks after weaning of the meds, and then it was like I finally broke the surface after swimming towards the light for a long, long time. This whole time I ate as primally as I possibly could.

                          So it's been a year since my lowest low, and life is much, much better. Stick with it. Walk every day, even if it's just around the block. GET OUT IN NATURE as much as you can - get your bare feet in contact with dirt, sand, rocks - get your skin in the sun. Know that you will eventually be ok, even if you aren't right now. Go on that vacation and use it as a chance to exercise your control of your life - saying no is good. No, I won't do that, No, I won't eat that, No, I won't think that... just, no. There are a lot of things in life that it's OK to quit.

                          And in saying no, you'll find a lot better yesses open up to you.