Treating depression with vitamins contributes to improving mood and relieving symptoms of depression, in addition to psychotherapy and medication, as deficiency of some vitamins may be associated with symptoms of depression. Most vitamins can usually be obtained from natural food sources, but some cases may require taking vitamins in the form of a nutritional supplement after consulting a doctor.

This article discusses 5 of the most important vitamins that help overcome depression.

Treating depression with vitamins

It may be associated with a decrease in the level of some neurotransmitters that play a role in stabilizing the mood, such as dopamine, serotonin, noradrenaline, and gamma-aminobutyric acid, and a lack of some nutrients in the body may lead to an imbalance in these neurotransmitters. [1]

Treating depression with vitamins helps regulate neurotransmitters along with other treatments, thus relieving symptoms of depression. [1]

Here are the most important vitamins that contribute to the treatment of depression:

Vitamin D

In the body, it can affect the production of neurotransmitters responsible for mood; Therefore, it is likely that there is a relationship between vitamin D deficiency and depression. [2]

An American study conducted in 2010 indicated that people with depression and other mental illnesses have a deficiency in vitamin D, as it was found that the level of vitamin D was 14% lower in depressed patients over the age of 65 compared to healthy subjects. [3]

Exposure to sunlight provides more than 90% of the body’s vitamin D needs, but some cases require taking vitamin D supplements, especially for people who are not exposed to the sun enough. [1]

Rich foods include: [1]

  • Cod liver oil (cod liver oil).
  • fatty fish.
  • yolk.
  • fortified milk
  • fortified cereals

Taking vitamin D supplements may have a role in treating depression with vitamins, especially for those who suffer from a deficiency, as vitamin D improves mood and relieves symptoms. [1]

It should be noted that vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin; Therefore, consuming excessive amounts of it may lead to serious side effects, and the matter may lead to kidney failure or irregular heartbeat. Therefore, you should consult a doctor before taking vitamin D to determine the appropriate dose. [1]

Some medications can interfere with vitamin D, such as: [1]

  • Statin medications.
  • steroids.
  • Thiazide diuretics.
  • Orlistat.

Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 contributes to the production of neurotransmitters that affect mood and other brain functions, and a low level of vitamin B12 may be associated with depression. [4]

Treating depression with vitamins such as vitamin B12 helps relieve symptoms of depression. A 2005 study published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology showed that taking a combination of vitamin B12 and folic acid plays a role in reducing symptoms of depression, but we still need more studies to confirm. These results. [5]

Vitamin B12 can be obtained from its natural sources, such as meat, fish, and dairy products, but in cases of vitamin B12 deficiency, it is preferable to take it in the form of oral nutritional supplements daily after consulting a doctor, while severe deficiency cases may require vitamin B12 injections. In addition to a healthy diet. [4]

The dose of vitamin B12 used to treat depression is between 1 to 25 micrograms daily, but you should consult your doctor first. [4]

Vitamin B12 has a low risk of toxicity because it is water soluble and is not stored by the body in excess. [1]

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Folic acid

It is characterized by its role in the treatment of depression with vitamins, as it works to improve the efficiency of the action of antidepressant drugs, and taking folic acid supplements in conjunction with antidepressants is useful in relieving symptoms of moderate or severe depression, and treating cases that did not respond to the usual treatment. [6] [7]

This is due to the existence of a link between the occurrence of depression, as well as between its deficiency and the lack of effectiveness of antidepressants, in addition to the fact that folic acid helps in breaking down the amino acid homocysteine, whose high levels in the blood are linked to depression. [2]

Folic acid can be taken as a dietary supplement, and it is available in many foods, such as: [8]

  • broccoli
  • Leafy vegetables.
  • Peanuts.
  • fortified cereals

Vitamin B6

It may contribute to the treatment of depression with vitamins, as it plays a role in regulating mood by contributing to the production of neurotransmitters, such as serotonin, dopamine, and gamma-aminobutyric acid in the body. Pyridoxine also has a role in reducing high levels of homocysteine ​​in the blood; Which relieves symptoms of depression. [9]

It is worth noting that vitamin B6 deficiency is rare, but there are factors that make people more likely to develop a deficiency, such as taking birth control pills or tuberculosis treatment drugs. [10]

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Vitamin C

It is one of the means of treating depression with vitamins, as it works to regulate dopamine, which is one of the chemicals in the body responsible for feeling happy, in addition to that, vitamin C helps reduce chronic inflammation and oxidative stress; Which improves symptoms of depression. [8]

Vitamin C can be obtained in the form of a food supplement, in addition to its natural sources, such as broccoli, citrus fruits, peppers, and strawberries. [8]