In this episode we review the meta-studies that show the best supplements to aid with Mood and Depression. Presented in order, these supplements are inexpensive, easy to take, and three of them have so many additional health benefits that most adults would benefit from daily doses anyway. Listen in to learn what the top supplements are, and how to choose between and experiment with them to discover which of these may have the most benefit for you. 


Note that a health care professional should always be consulted when dealing with chronic mood or depressive symptoms.

According to examine.com following are the top supplements to aid with Mood and depression

Note that these are ranked in order of effectiveness for the majority of people. This means if you want to add any of these to your health regiment it is best to start with #1 and work your way down the list. As usual, always use a supplement consistently for 2 weeks before judging its effectiveness.

#1 Zinc

Zinc is an important mineral for general health and may influence mood and depression.  While it doesn’t have a potent anti-depressant effect, its supplementation is known to increase the effectiveness of other therapies and so many people are deficient enough to affect their mood that it is generally a very important mineral to supplement anyway. 10-20 milligrams per day is the general recommendation. It should be taken with meals to prevent nausea.  Avoid taking zinc, calcium, and magnesium supplements at the same time. [Mimi’s Miracle Multi has 20 mg per serving.]

#2 Chromium

The best form is Chromium-GTF as chromium is unstable by itself.  Check out our episode on it here to learn more about this one as it also has weight loss, blood sugar, and cholesterol reducing effects. 1000 micrograms per day is the recommended dose.

#3 Vitamin D

Over 77 percent of adults are deficient in Vitamin D.  It is necessary for bone growth, and can aid with seasonal depression.  It has been shown to aid with depression, though the mechanism behind it is still undergoing research. 2000 iUs is the recommended dose. [you may notice that this is the exact amount in Mimi’s Miracle Multi, coincidence? Nope!]

#4 SAMe

It was found to be as potent in some studies as tricyclic anti-depressants, or TCAs. It can enhance the action of selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors. Some evidence suggests that supplementing with creatine can also increase serum levels of SAMe which is why we recommend experimenting creatine first, before supplementing SAMe.  Creatine has so many studied benefits that it is generally worth adding 5 g to your daily regiment either way. (With all of these, consult with your doctor to figure out what is best for you). Recommended dosage is 400 mg three times per day, and with this one they recommend supplementing it consistently for at least three weeks before analyzing.

#5 EPA

If we all ate enough fish we would probably be ok in this department. It has be shown to play a supporting role in treating depression, preliminary evidence suggests it may play a role in reducing anxiety. While you can buy it as a supplement, the best way to get it is a good fish oil supplement.  Most fish oil supplements have 180 mg of EPA in them already.  Many health professionals recommend taking 4-6 g of fish oil each day. Check out the fish oil episode for more info on fish oil.

#6 St. Johns Wort

It may be as effective as some antidepressants. It may not benefit those who are suffering from major depressive order, and it can interact negatively with pharmaceutical antidepressants so make sure and consult with your physician before trying this one.  It can also render birth control pills ineffective, so ladies be aware of that as well.  Dosage is 300-900 mg per day, usually starting at 300 and ramping up from there until you get the desired effect.

#7 Adaptogens

These are supplements that can reduce the symptoms of stress including fatigue, mood swings, irritability and anxiety. They’ve been shown to be effective in treating stress-induced depression.  The best ones in this category are rhodiola rosea and ashwagandha. Ashwaganda should be taken with breakfast and not late in the day, as it can cause insomnia.

#8 NAC

Used principally to treat acetaminophen overdose, but it has been researched for treating a large range of cognitive and effective disorders, so this is another one to try.  Again this is one of the last ones to try if the above ones are ineffective. Dosage is 300-900 mg per day. There are many products for this available on Amazon.

#9 Uridine

Uridine is required to create new neuronal membranes. It can also increase the rate of neuronal growth and turnover. There is usually enough in food that the body can synthesize what it needs, however there are many benefits which have been shown from supplementing uridine as well. So it is mostly to increase the effects of other cognitive boosters and anti-depressants. Supplementation is of uridine monophosphate or UMP, and standard dosage is 250-500 mg twice per day.

#10 Psycho-stimulants

Ritalin, dextroamphetamine are the common ones. These are not “natural” health recommendations and require prescriptions. The issue with these is that if they are used too frequently they are likely to cause the original depressive symptoms to return and even worsen. Hence the reason we put these last. Filling in the deficiencies discussed above is what we recommend before trying these.

Transcript:

Intro: 00:02 Welcome to the Dirobi health show, covering the world of fitness, nutrition, and supplementation with world class guests, the latest clinical research and plenty of tips you can use right away to boost your health and wellness. Here’s your host, Dave Sherwin.

00:22 Hello. Welcome to episode 75 of the Dirobi health show. This episode really goes hand in hand with episode 74 in which I interviewed to Sinead Irwin. Shed excellent content on helping with mood and depression. It’s a big topic in our society. A lot of people deal with this. We all deal with it to some extent, and in this episode I’m going to cover the metadata and met a study. Sorry, what a metastudy is when someone takes many studies or you know, a large group of studies with large groups of people to determine the most valid and accurate information regarding certain things. In this case, supplements. So this information is taken as I’ve done in the past from meta research done by examine.com. These people are in an or unbiased researchers who do not accept any money or advertising dollars from supplement companies. They researched the supplements and either debunk them or tell them yes, they’re neutral or that they’re positive and they are very, very conservative and so when they come out and say something is effective, you know, you can trust it.

01:27 Not only that, they rate the supplements based on the quality of the studies, the size of the studies, et Cetera, and they’ve done excellent research on the supplements that are most helpful for mood and depression. Now, of course, this is not an episode to replace, you know, expert, um, professional help if you’re have a, a situation where you really need someone to either a therapist or psychologist or something, um, then of course you need to seek that out first. This is for the general everyday person who struggles with regular and normal mood swings or feelings of depression that are not clinical, although some of these supplements have been used for clinical depression. And I’ll, I’ll make a note of that, um, in, in those cases. Otherwise, these are the top six supplements for mood and depression and they’re done in order. And so you should start with number one and move on down from there.

02:27 If number one is not effective, each one should be tried for at least two weeks and some of them can be used together. So I’ll try to describe these the best I can with the instructions on how to use them, the amounts to take, et cetera. The number one supplement according to examine.com research on the Meta studies, that they’ve analyzed is zinc. Zinc is an important mineral for general health and may influence mood and depression according to the research, although it doesn’t have a potent antidepressant effect, supplementation is known to increase the effectiveness of antidepressant therapies and it does improve the mood of people who are not suffering from clinical depression. So focusing on zinc supplementation is recommended because it also has so many other health benefits. Many people are zinc deficient. And so the reason this is number one is not because it’s necessarily

03:24 so great at helping with mood or depression. It’s a, it does that, yes, and a lot of things. And you should just have it anyway. That’s why they made it. Number one, there’s actually other supplements that might have a more direct effect on your mood or feelings of depression than zinc, but zinc is an inexpensive supplement, very easy to take. It’s something your body needs for so many reasons that there is no reason to not supplement with zinc and if you’re struggling with moodiness or some depression, number one by far, so now you don’t want to take too much. You got to take the right amounts of zinc over time. High doses can irritate the gastrointestinal tract or and cause copper deficiency, so be careful, but that would be very, very high doses. You can’t go wrong with small doses of 10 to 20 milligrams a day and as much as 30 milligrams a day.

04:19 If you’re very active and maybe you an athlete in training, a note that our product, Mimi’s miracle multi has 20 milligrams, which is right there in the sweet spot. Also note though that that is 182 percent of the FDA recommendation, which most health professionals find to be too low. Again, FDA recommendations are supposed to be one size fits all. Whether you’re a small, uh, you know, elderly woman or a large football player, obviously your needs would be very, very different, but they have to establish some type of number and so they do, but these studies indicate that 20 milligrams a day is a perfect number for most people to take to fill in that deficiency that they probably have. Zinc should be taken with meals to prevent nausea. So Mimi’s miracle multi. If you take your zinc in that form, uh, you just take that usually with breakfast, uh, avoid taking zinc, calcium and magnesium and iron at the same time since high amounts of those minerals will compete for absorption.

05:27 Is, is actually interesting because this is one of the reasons we did not include calcium and magnesium in our supplement. If you’re taking a supplement that has zinc and calcium and magnesium, that that’s a problem. So, it’s a problem on a, on a, on a few levels. First of all, you need, you know, you should be getting calcium and magnesium from diet. We covered this in other episodes, a eat your green leafy vegetables and nuts and seeds, et cetera. It doesn’t take a lot to get calcium and magnesium. Calcium is supplemented in many foods. A magnesium supplementation also should not be done orally. A, the best way to take magnesium is through a spray spread on your thighs at night. It’ll help you sleep better, it’ll help you overcome, um, a muscle pain from exercise. And so there’s good reasons to not take calcium, magnesium, and zinc at the same time, or possibly not take calcium and magnesium at all.

06:24 If you’re eating a healthy diet, you really should be getting enough of those. Okay, so moving on. The number two recommendation is chromium. Chromium does have anti depressant properties. It’s an unstable, it’s unstable when taken as a supplement. And so the best form is chromium GTF. I have an episode on that, listened to that episode with Ned Jensen. He’s the patent holder on chromium GTF and goes into detail on the clinical studies both on humans and animals with chromium GTF. And since it’s also been shown to reduce weight, cholesterol, and improve blood sugar management, there’s lots of great reasons to take chromium GTF. The clinical dose is a thousand mcgs per day. And that’s what the human clinical studies were done based on. And the episode I did on that is episode 59 using chromium GTF for weight loss, blood sugar management, and lower cholesterol. Well worth listening to.

07:22 And again, if you don’t want to go out and buy these all separately, a chromium GTF is in Mimi’s miracle bolty. Um, the next one is vitamin D according to examine.com. It is a core supplement that most people are deficient on. I have another episode on that. If you want to just look it up at dirobicom. A 77 percent of Americans are deficient in Vitamin D over Fifty percent of children are deficient in vitamin D and preliminary evidence suggests vitamin D can benefit mood, when supplemented, by people with less than optimal levels, which is most of us. The effect is not very powerful and it’s currently being investigated more fully, but it’s such an inexpensive supplement that there’s just no reason for the large deficiency that we have in our society. It’s easy to take. The dose is 2000 I use per day.

08:18 And again, as luck would have it at say, exact amount we put in Mimi’s miracle multi, of course, a much of the research we did on Mimi’s miracle multivitamin from similar sources to what examined found here. So there’s, you know, it’s not a totally coincidental that the exact supplements and in the right amounts are in Mimi’s miracle multi. It was based on a lot of research that we did. So these top three, zinc, vitamin D and chromium are all in Mimi’s miracle multi. And moving on we’ll get into ones that are not, but I’ll, I’ll provide links in the show notes too where you can find some of these ones that we’re going to talk about next. So the next one is Sam. He, I hope I’m saying that right. It’s capital s, capital a, capital m and a small east. I’m just going to call it sammy because I don’t know any better.

09:11 This is another one that examined.com research found a, was very helpful in helping people. Um, and as a matter of fact, it was found to be as potent as tricyclic antidepressants or tcas in some tests, and it can also enhance the action of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, preliminary preliminary evidence suggest that supplementing creatine or model creatine monohydrate or try method glisten tmg also known as Betaine can indirectly increased serum levels of Sam. He though to a lesser extent than supplementing Sam. He now because of that, I recommend supplementing with creatine monohydrate first instead of the semi. The reason why, again, it’s very inexpensive, I take it every single day. I have for a very long time. There’s so much clinical data on creatine. I really like dos labs. Some of you heard my interview about creatine with Jose Reyes from dos labs. They have a six point creatine that has all six types of creatine in it.

10:20 I take five grams every single day. I don’t see any reason not to it. It helps you just be stronger. Have for, um, muscle growth. It’s been proven to be very effective. Even in sedentary patients, in hospitals, they retained more muscle mass than those who do not take it. And so I’d actually recommend that you first of all, take creatine before you try the Sammy because it produces almost the same benefits. It’s quite inexpensive and has so many other good benefits that, uh, I would do that first, but consult with your health professional on any and all of these anyway, and maybe they feel differently and they feel like the Sammy would be a really smart thing for you to take. Now, a, they are methylation agents, both creotine, Sammy and tmg. And so consult with the doctor as I’m your. If you’re taking serotonin mediated pharmaceuticals, these may cause a problem.

11:20 So that’s important to know what the semi, you would take 400 milligrams of Sammy three times a day or 1200 milligrams per day with meals. Also note this one might take three weeks to be felt. And so you would have to try that, um, for three weeks to find out. And again, you can mimic it’s results with two to five grams of creatine monohydrate or tmg. Uh, I recommend five grams of creatine based on the research that I’ve done. Again, with a health professional, if you want to get specific advice for your situation, the next one is EPA. Epa Studies suggests that treatment resistant depression is associated with low concentrations of EPA. So again, this is something a lot of people are deficient on. We would get it if we eat enough fish, most of us don’t. And the fact is, if you eat too much fish, you can get other problems.

12:17 And so supplementing with EPA is a great idea. Uh, it has been shown to play a supporting role in the treatment of depression and Prelim, preliminary human evidence suggests that may also play a role in reducing anxiety. Now, while you can find it as a supplement, there’s really no reason to buy it as a separate supplement because it comes in fish oil. Most one gram fish oil soft gels contain 180 milligrams of EPA. So three such soft gels taken all at once would make for the correct daily dose that was found to give these good beneficial results. Now I actually recommend you take four grams of fish oil per day. That’s what I take ’em. I got that from multiple sources there. There’s some people suggest a little bit less, some suggests a little bit more, but I’ve found that four grams is a really good number.

13:13 It’s not that expensive a, there’s a decent product at costco that’s not very expensive and I’ll put a link to that product on Amazon as well. For those of you that don’t have a costco or you just want to shop on Amazon, it’s not very expensive. 400 tablets is something like 12 bucks I think, maybe 15 and of course 400 tablets. If you take four a day because each tablet is a gram, then that would be, you know, a month’s supply for 12 or 15 bucks. Well worth it. Tons of other benefits from fish oil. We know that it’s not really being disputed by anybody out there. And uh, uh, you know, for all your soft tissue, I cite a EPA and the other benefits of fish oil are proven and solid and well worth it. Four grams a day is a great dose. And now we’ll move onto the next one.

14:02 It is St John’s Wort, St John’s wart is one of the best researched herbal antidepressants. It may be comparable to some pharmaceutical alternatives such as tricyclic antidepressants or tcas, and it is recommended for people suffering from depressive symptoms who are not taking meditation. Supplementation may not benefit people suffering from major depressive disorder or people not suffering from depression, but simply looking to improve their mood. So note the difference in that and uh, uh, the others, uh, it also interacts negatively with many pharmaceutical, so be careful with this one. This one’s Well-worth a consulting with your healthcare provider. And note ladies that it can also render your birth controls in effect, your birth control pills ineffective. And so if you don’t want to accidentally have a baby, you need to be very careful about St John’s wort. St John’s wart should be taken at levels of 300, 900 milligrams a day.

15:04 Start with 300 and increase it until you get the desired effect. The most common maintained dose is 600 milligrams. Okay. The next one is adaptogens. And adaptogens are supplements that can reduce the mental and physical effects of stress, including fatigue, mood swings, irritability and anxiety, and they’ve been shown to be effective at treating depression that stems from stress and anxiety. The best research adaptogens are Rhodiola Rosea, Rosea and Ashwagandha. And again, I’ll put links to a couple of products that we recommend, uh, uh, that are available easily on Amazon. Also, not very expensive supplements. So, you know, if you’re dealing with, with, uh, symptoms from, um, you know, moodiness and depression, again, you know, well worth trying these natural supplements, um, over. Um, well, again, I, I gotta be very careful what I say. Go, go with what your health professional tells you is just that if you can achieve good results with natural products, of course that’s always better than committing to drugs if possible, if it solves the problem.

16:24 Right? Okay. Uh, Ashwaganda by the way, is often taken with breakfast and shouldn’t be taken late in the day. It can cause insomnia. And the next one is NAC. And, uh, it’s used principally to treat a set of a set of. I’m having trouble speaking today as sediment often overdose, a set of often set a manifest, I think it’s aspirin, right? Anyways, um, and also to loosen up thick mucus, but it has been researched for the treatment of a wide range of cognitive disorders and affective disorders. So this is another one to try it again. Remember what I said at the beginning in order. This is one of the last ones you would try if everything else we already talked about is effective. Uh, the range on NDC is 300 and 900 milligrams a day. And uh, again, uh, there’s plenty of products available. We’ll, we’ll link to a good one here in the show notes.

17:31 The last one, no second to last one is uridine and it’s required to create new neuronal membranes. It can also increase the rate of neuronal growth and turnover. Now there’s little uridine and food, so the body can synthesize enough to satisfy its basic needs, but supplementation can bring additional benefits. At least roden study suggests that you’re a dining interacts with many neurotransmitters and pharmaceuticals, so while you’re dying on its own might help with depression. It is more likely to support the action of antidepressants, mood enhancers, and cognitive boosters. So, uh, this is one you’d want to consult with a health professional for a when you’re already taking some of those other products to see if this would help to pour gas on that fire and make them work better. It’s usually supplemented through Uridine, monophosphate or ump, which is two thirds uridine. The standard dosage is 250 to 500 milligrams twice a day.

18:35 The last one is psychostimulants, and of course, uh, that’s not one of our natural health recommendations, but a psychostimulants are those pharmaceuticals such as Ritalin and Dexter. I’m am dextroamphetamine that temporary benefit cognition and mood and psychostimulants can even induce euphoria, however used too frequently, they are likely to cause the original depressive symptoms to worsen. That’s the challenge, right? With this whole issue is sometimes we start off with something that works really well for us, and if it’s a drug, it can turn on us later. And so this is why ideally you want to start at the top of this list, make sure you’re getting enough zinc. Chromium, vitamin D on down, and as you can see, uh, those are things that everyone already knows you should have, those are things we should not be deficient on in the first place. So starting at the top and filling in those deficiencies is always the best way to do it.

19:38 Now this is a lot of information to cover in a podcast and I realized that if you’re driving or listen to this while you ran or whatever, that uh, you won’t remember all this stuff. So if you just go to [inaudible] dot com, click on the blog and look for this episode. We’ll have the complete show notes which have a little bit more information that will arrive, what I’ve covered here, um, regarding each of these supplements. Links on where you can buy them, etc. And this is episode 75. And so if you go to blog dot [inaudible] dot com and find episode 75, all those links and information will be there. so thank you so much for listening. Thank you for supporting the show. I love doing this. It’s such a, it’s a lot of fun. I love all the guests that we have and the information that I’m learning.

20:23 This has helped me. I’m in better shape and health now than I was a year ago because of a lot of the great tips I’ve picked up from our guests. I hope you’re hAving a similar experience and if you’re enjoying the show, as always, I invite you to leave your review on itunes. That would be greatly appreciated. I realize very few of you actually listen to the show on itunes and yet those itunes reviews would the show to grow and get a bigger audience and that would be terrific. And so, if you would go over there to itunes and leave your review, that would be much appreciated. And until next time, this is dave sherwin wishing you health and success.

Intro: 21:04 Thanks for listening to the Dirobi Health Show. Make sure and check dirobi.com for a free copy of dave’s excellent health book formula seven and enter to win and our free bottle friday contest. If you’re enjoying the show, leave a review on itunes. See you next time.

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Note that this information is presented as educational in nature and is not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure or prevent any disease.