Naturally treating mood, anxiety & mild depression

Naturally treating mood, anxiety & mild depression

This is a topic I often write about, but here’s a few more thoughts on supplements for mood related issues.


Lithium is an essential mineral that plays a significant role in healthy mental function, including support for healthy mood, behaviour and memory. It does this by affecting dopamine and serotonin and increasing our natural detoxification enzymes in the brain.

Supplementing with low dose lithium orotate. I decide on exact dosage from the hair mineral test results. Read more about it in: Lithium Orotate: A Powerful Neuroprotective Supplement.

Vitamin B3

Vitamin B3 may help with mild depression and balancing moods. This has been such an important nutrient for many of my clients. Ensuring you get the right dosage is key though.

For some, this can be a stronger effect if you take B3 with SAM-e, St John’s Wort and or 5-HTP to increase serotonin.

More information here; Niacin Adventures: Part 1 – Nature’s Prozac. “Simply put, if you’re not getting enough Niacin in your diet, you will end up being deficient in Serotonin. And Melatonin.”

St. John’s Wort

St. John’s wort is thought to have antidepressant actions similar to SSRI’s, it does this by inhibiting the reuptake of serotonin, norepinephrine and dopamine, making more of these neurotransmitters available to the brain.

I find it’s really effective for some, but it isn’t effective for everyone though. Make sure you use a quality brand and dose slowly. 



Clinical trials have confirmed the efficacy of 5-HTP supplements for depression, sleep disorders, binge eating and panic disorders.

5-hydroxy tryptophan, or 5-HTP is a compound produced in the body from the amino acid tryptophan. It is a precursor to the neurotransmitter serotonin and the hormone melatonin.

If 5-HTP is not tolerated, L-tryptophan is an alternative to consider.

Some people find they may need less of both 5-HTP & St John’s Wort if used together.


5-Hydroxytryptophan: A Clinically-Effective Serotonin Precursor

CBD oil

Some have great success with this. It doesn’t suit everyone, as CBD is high in phenols (natural chemicals that some can’t tolerate).


S-adenosyl methionine (SAM-e—pronounced Sammy), is produced from the amino acid methionine, is present in all the body’s cells and is needed for many reactions, including the synthesis of serotonin.

As a supplement, SAM-e has been used extensively for treating depression in Europe for many years, this study below published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition concluded that SAM-e supplementation was a safe and effective treatment for depression.

References: Role of S-adenosyl-L-methionine in the treatment of depression: a review of the evidence

Stabilising blood sugar

I see a link in clients (and my son) between anxiety related symptoms and blood sugar imbalances. There are various nutritional ways to help (e.g. magnesium, chromium) and a hair mineral test can be the best place to start.



Low iron can really affect energy levels and mood. I can’t stress enough, please do test before taking iron as it can be problematic if you don’t need it. Spatone is a good absorbable form and well tolerated. I wouldn’t suggest iron supplement as a long term solution.

As I always say, what works for one doesn’t always work for everyone, so work with your Nutritionist to check what will work for you.

Here’s some tests I often use to help pinpoint what is needed:

  • Mineral hair test
  • OAT (Organic Acids Test)
  • Adrenal testing
  • Thyroid testing – TSH, free T4, free T3, total T3, thyroid antibodies
  • Food intolerance testing
  • Full iron blood test (including iron, TIBC, Transferrin Saturation, Ferritin)