Prozac is HotOne in five Americans suffer from depression. The milder forms may go unrecognized and untreated. Mental depression can be associated with grief, discouragement, despair, loneliness, hormonal changes, and other factors. Constant worry that produces no solutions (called "toxic worry") can immobilize a person, drain their energy, and lead to depression.
Depression affects how people take care of themselves. Moderate symptoms of depression and anxiety are strongly associated with unhealthful dietary practices and a higher food intake. Middle-aged people with depression have twice the risk of dying from cancer and heart disease. Depressed people tend to have less contact with friends and relatives. High levels of social support can decrease the effects of depression.
Getting adequate sleep, avoiding fatigue, having bright lights on during the gray days of winter, and stress management can help in the fight against anxiety and depression. In addition, exercise will cause the release of brain endorphins, which promote a positive mental outlook. "For every perplexity, we have a sure Counselor. Whatever our sorrow, bereavement, or loneliness, we have a sympathizing Friend."
Author: Winston Craig, MPH, PhD, RD.
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