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Thread: Groking it and Depression page

  1. #1
    CandylandCanary's Avatar
    CandylandCanary is offline Senior Member
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    Groking it and Depression

    Primal Fuel
    I've been recently diagnosed with dysthymia (which is a form of depression). This is actually semi-good news because it's starting to look like my problems are all in my neurochemistry rather than my blood sugar. Since I started wellbutrin in addition to the usual amino acid supplements, I've had sudden, dramatic cessation of my once-violent, out of control, compulsive carb cravings.

    And I mean- POOF. Gone. Brain chemicals are a bitch.

    Anyway.

    I now eat about.. say, 100g of carb a day, happily, and it's all low-carb vegetables right now. I think the fastest carb I eat is onions, and I could happily live without them too. Give me some broccolli and bell peppers and I'm satisfied with my diet.

    But.

    My shrink says that depressed people should not be on low carb diets. She says it's fine if I want to aim for 120g-150g carb per day (and I'm at my goal weight, so I don't need to lose any more). But that anyone with depression issues needs grains.

    I told her that I am not interested in getting on the grain crazytrain again, thanks.

    She then said- 'fine, but eat some fruit. You need carbs to stimulate serotonin.'

    Which would be okay by me. I like berries and apples and so on. But I'm curious about other Groksters out there with depression issues. Did you find that you had better moods when you upped the carbs a bit?
    Getting my Grok on in the Pacific Northwest.

    "C is for cookie, that's good enough for me."
    "Cookie is a sometimes food."
    "Sometimes cookie monster eat APPLE instead of COOKIE. Sometimes eat CARROT."
    -Cookie Monster, partially reformed sugarholic

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    ErikaE's Avatar
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    I struggle with mild depression but haven't noticed a real difference, being low-carb for the last month, compared to me usually. If anything I'm slightly happier.

    And carbs are far from the only thing that boost serotonin....your shrink does acknowledge that, right? Is she saying that because you've maxed out all the other ways to increase serotonin production, and carbs are the only thing that's left? 10 Quick Tips to Boost Your Serotonin | Mark's Daily Apple
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    Yaish's Avatar
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    Low fat is far more likely to bring about depression and other mental disorders.

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    JKC
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    I finished reading the Perfect Health Diet, which is paleo, and they cite studies suggesting a ketogenic (low carb) diet is beneficial for depression. I can tend to depression and have really had no sign of it since starting eating primal. In fact, when I have higher carbs 100-150g I think my mood is worse than when I keep them under 100g.
    Karin

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    healthy11's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yaish View Post
    Low fat is far more likely to bring about depression and other mental disorders.
    I agree and you don't need to eat grains to get carbs in your diet. Eat sweet potatoes or even white potatoes. Someone here has talked about Potatoes not Prozac. Here is the website Radiant Recovery® - Dr. Kathleen DesMaisons, author of Potatoes Not Prozac, The Sugar Addict's Total Recovery Program, Your Last Diet. You could eat a primal diet and have your potato at night and see if that helps.

    I can't remember who has followed that program, but maybe she will add to this discussion.

    Also, I have had problems with depression and it got worse when I first started eating this way, but after a few months got much better. I eat between 50-100 grams of carbs, but usually on the lower side. It takes time for your brain to adjust.
    Last edited by healthy11; 08-11-2011 at 09:26 PM.

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    When I slip and eat wheat (like I did this week) my mood becomes worse. I don't know if it's the carbs per se (the glucose crash), the lectins, or what, but a significant part of my "wheat hangover" is a significant increase in low mood, lack of motivation, and just a general negative outlook on the world.

    I am also taking Wellbutrin, and this week I began cutting down the dose (by dosing every other day instead of daily). Interestingly, this week I have also had much more trouble staying away from the "bad" carbs. Mild cravings, but mostly just not caring. But I should care. I normally care. Maybe I'm not ready to go off it after all. :-/
    42 yo female; 5'8"
    Oct 2009: 205 lbs
    Dec 2010: 167 lbs
    Current weight: 158 lbs (first time under 160 in 17 years!!!)
    Goal weight: 145 lbs

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    JVib's Avatar
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    Amen brother.
    "You have succeeded in life when all you really want is only what you really need." ~ Vernon Howard

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    I’ve struggled with depression since puberty (I'm 42 now) and have been on meds at least 10 times (I go on and off…I can’t stand the side effects…it always kills my libido). I’ve always stuck to a low fat high carb diet in the past. Plus I’m a reformed sugar-aholic. The carbs made the depression much worse and put my on a horrible cycle (Feel mildly depressed -> crave carbs -> eat lots of carbs -> feel more depressed -> Repeat). Yes, sugar elevates serotonin levels..temporarily. What really helps is lots of good fat, exercise (cardio and resistance), and exposure to natural sunlight. I also take a supplement (Holy Basil) twice a day which also helps.
    "You have succeeded in life when all you really want is only what you really need." ~ Vernon Howard

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    Quote Originally Posted by JVib View Post
    I’ve struggled with depression since puberty (I'm 42 now) and have been on meds at least 10 times (I go on and off…I can’t stand the side effects…it always kills my libido). I’ve always stuck to a low fat high carb diet in the past. Plus I’m a reformed sugar-aholic. The carbs made the depression much worse and put my on a horrible cycle (Feel mildly depressed -> crave carbs -> eat lots of carbs -> feel more depressed -> Repeat). Yes, sugar elevates serotonin levels..temporarily. What really helps is lots of good fat, exercise (cardio and resistance), and exposure to natural sunlight. I also take a supplement (Holy Basil) twice a day which also helps.
    Hah, this is me too. 31 and struggled with depression, been on meds, blah blah.

    I do know that even with a low carb diet, mood can be a problem. Usually when I notice that happening, it is because I'm simply not eating enough FOOD. Eating lots of quality fat makes me feel REALLY good. Not just a surge like carbs give, but sustainably good.

  10. #10
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    Primal Blueprint Expert Certification
    My hubby suffers from depression and has been on meds for almost 10 years now (maybe even longer). As someone who is witness to depression, and who is not physically experiencing the depression, I cannot say enough for the Primal Blueprint. My hubby is still on his meds (Paxil and Wellbutrin), but the change in his diet, the exercise, and the success that he has experienced with this lifestyle has helped him a thousand times over. The PB is changing our lives - and not just physically - but emotionally as well. As someone who is in the role of a supporter and caregiver to her depressed husband - I would not go off this lifestyle for anything. The positive changes are worth too much to give up on.

    (And this is not to say that he doesn't still go through down moods. It just seems that he is able to rebound much faster and the negativity is kept at bay for longer periods of time.)

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