Complementary and alternative medicine has been used either alone or in combination with conventional therapies in patients with depression.
Studies suggest that acupuncture, mindfulness therapies, exercise, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals are effective in the treatment of mood disorders.
More and more studies demonstrate a significant association between modifiable lifestyle factors and depression risk.
Integrative medicine approaches can be used effectively in mild to moderate depression and in treatment-resistant depression. Even if complementary and alternative medicine therapies are not the primary treatment of mood disorders, the science is showing that such treatments should be taken in consideration.
The studies available suggest folic acid has either antidepressant properties or can act as an augmenting agent for standard antidepressant treatment. Folic acid is a simple method of greatly improving the antidepressant action of fluoxetine and probably other antidepressants.
J Affect Disord. 2000 Nov;60(2):121-30.
Enhancement of the antidepressant action of fluoxetine by folic acid: a randomised, placebo controlled trial.
Coppen A1, Bailey J.
Hum Psychopharmacol. 2004 Oct;19(7):477-88.Folic acid: neurochemistry, metabolism and relationship to depression.
Paul RT1, McDonnell AP, Kelly CB.
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