So many veterans suffer from post traumatic stress disorder and depression. Conventional treatment does not seem to heal these diseases. Conventional treatment includes talk therapy and pharmaceutical drugs. We do not know all the side effects from long term use of these drugs. We do not really know how these drugs affect brain chemistry. The holistic approach uses natural products, foods and techniques to temper anxiety and depression.
Talk therapy tends to dwell on the trauma and the negative effects of the trauma. It often focuses on behavior issues that stem from the trauma. The holistic approach uses techniques to flush out and let go of the trauma and stored negative emotions related to the trauma.
It is time for treatment of PTSD and Depression in Veterans to include a holistic approach. A holistic approach can be integrated with conventional treatment.
A holistic approach focuses on the whole person -mind, body and spirit. It includes positive thinking and mindfulness techniques (mind), natural supplements, diet/nutrition and exercise (body) and meditation, yoga, Reiki, acupuncture, visualizations and spiritual prayer (spirit).
Mindfulness, combined with positive thinking techniques and inner work, train us to be in the moment with full attention and awareness. They relax us, The inner work includes daily heart centered meditation and prayer. Mindfulness teaches us to identify when our thoughts and emotions are negative or agitated and then move back to a place of calm and balance. They teach us to center ourselves in our hearts/body centers, to focus on our breath and the details of what we encounter in the moment through our senses and without ongoing negative thoughts.
Positive thinking techniques teach us to develop focused and controlled thoughts oriented toward work, errands and other positive activities. Theta (along with alpha, beta and delta) brain wave entrainment also helps us to relax the mind and body and enhance positive thoughts. Theta (along with alpha, beta and delta) brain wave entrainment exercises along with many meditation exercises can be found on YouTube.
Spiritual techniques include heart centered meditation, deep breathing exercises, yoga and heart centered prayer, Reiki and chakra cleansing and balancing exercises. These techniques help to calm and balance us, while raising our vibrations. Spiritual techniques also include emotional release, which ends the energetic grip of trauma.
Reiki, acupuncture and other forms of energy therapy also help cleanse and heal our energy bodies and free us from the energetic grip of trauma. Emotional release of the trauma has a therapeutic effect on our thoughts and emotions. Spiritual techniques include methods to raise our spirits/vibrations. This includes visualizations, deep breathing, music, color and essential oils.
Herbal supplements are effective to treat depression and anxiety when combined with mind-body-spirit techniques. For depression, these supplements include St. John’s Wort, Sam-e, 5 HTP, Kratom and Colloidal Gold among others. For anxiety, they include Chamomile, Valerian Root, Ashwaghanda, Kratom, Passion Flower, Kava, GABA, 5 HTP, Hops. Hawthorn, Theanine, Triptophan, Lavendar, Lemon Balm and Dark Chocolate/Cocoa, Magnesium, B Complex Vitamins and Kratom, Co Q 10/Ubiquinol, Fish Oil, Flaxseed Oil, Hemp Oil, Coconut Oil, Lion’s Mane Mushrooms and Medical Marijuana among others. For sleep, they include Valerian Root, Ashwaghanda, Holy Basil, Tryptophan, Melatonin and 5 HTP. Holistic research also indicates the benefits of N-Acetyl-L-Cysteine (NAC), Lactium and L-Theanine along with amino acid supplements for depression and anxiety.
For positive thinking, it is also important to incorporate positive affirmations into one’s daily routine (to change beliefs from negative to positive) and silently express gratitude each day for life and the blessings of life.
Diet is important. A whole food, plant based diet will help de-toxify your body and provide the nutrition it craves. This diet will also help improve brain chemistry. The foods in this diet include organic vegetables, fruit, whole grains, nuts and seeds. The brain is composed primarily of cholesterol. So, plant based fats are very important to consume to improve brain chemistry. These fats include avocado, nuts and seeds (especially walnuts, almonds, cashews an pumpkin seeds), peanuts, coconut and coconut oil. Omega 3, 6 and 9 is also essential for brain health. You can get these fatty acids from fish oil, flaxseed oil and hemp oil.
Also, on a daily basis, take good sized doses of vitamins a, b complex, c, d3, e, k1 and k2 along with Co-Q 10, turmeric or curcumin, fish oil and flaxseed oil supplements along with coconut oil.
Daily exercise is important along with getting outdoors and into nature often. Daily exercise includes cardio, light weights and stretching. It is also important to avoid conflict, drama and stress when you are healing and to drink mostly pure water.