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10 February 2009 @ 09:14 am
all is illusion  
A depression has settled upon me and lodged itself deep inside my brain. Nothing special going on to cause it, so it's almost certainly just chemical. It's funny how quickly I can lose the ability to care about anything. It's really like a switch has been pulled. At least I've been through this enough times to know I'll come back out the other end at some point.

Oddly, it's only at times like this that I ever feel I could be a Buddhist. My attachments to the world are refreshingly minimal at the moment and my suddenly emptied brain seems primed for meditation.

I'm sure there's a well-established link between depression and religious conversions.

 
 
Listening to: The Zombies - "Friends of Mine"
 
 
 
traballenguastraballenguas on February 10th, 2009 04:44 pm (UTC)
Have you tried tryptophan (or 5HTP)? I can recommend the former, and the latter is supposed to be even more effective. Worth a try, anyway. I find it doesn't make everything happy-happy, but takes the edge of the bottom. Enough to notice.

Take care.
Diary of an Ass Monkeyassmonkeydiary on February 10th, 2009 05:14 pm (UTC)
Thanks.

I haven't really tried any anti-depressants. I tend to stay away from doctors and prescription medication, but I've gotten somewhat good at managing them on my own.
traballenguastraballenguas on February 10th, 2009 05:19 pm (UTC)
Well, they aren't prescription medications, and they will only work in certain situations. Do some reading, and see what you think. Tryptophan is the raw material that your body makes serotonin (a neurotransmitter) out of, so all you are doing is making that available - if you body doesn't need it, it won't use it. If you body doesn't process it efficiently, having a little extra around might be helpful.

5HTP is the intermediate form of tryptophan as it is being processed to serotonin. It just cuts out one or two steps.

The tryptophan I take is extracted from beets (if I got the translation right).
Diary of an Ass Monkey: amd: guru of badonkadonkassmonkeydiary on February 10th, 2009 05:37 pm (UTC)
Oh, wow, cool. I shall indeed look into them. Thanks!
traballenguastraballenguas on February 11th, 2009 07:49 am (UTC)
I hope it helps!
Diary of an Ass Monkey: amd: angel and the ape giganticassmonkeydiary on February 11th, 2009 04:58 am (UTC)
So, after I realized that I sort of knew what tryptophan was, I went out and had a turkey hoagie. Sure enough, it helped.

Oddly enough, looking at a list of foods that contain it, I realize I've been craving quite a few of them lately.
traballenguastraballenguas on February 11th, 2009 07:52 am (UTC)
There you go! Actually, though, turkey has tiny amounts of tryptophan (I guess the key is the ratio of tryptopphan to another amino acid, which I can't remember). Try the capsules. Or the 5HTP, which is supposed to be more effective.

In general, I take the maximum recommended amount at the start, and when I notice an effect, I trim down to a low dose. But YMMV.
Tinelithtinelith on February 11th, 2009 12:40 pm (UTC)
It's really funny, this coming up, I've been having more milk (finally non-lactose milk appeared in stores around here!), nuts and bananas lately after I read that the tryptophan in these might soothe anxiety. Still have to see if it helps. I am also giving up caffeine and *sniff* alcohol.
Diary of an Ass Monkey: amd: red pow wowassmonkeydiary on February 11th, 2009 02:15 pm (UTC)
I've stopped drinking coffee recently so my caffeine intake has gone way down too. I could never give up the booze though.