The amino acid that can lift you out of the dumps
When you're battling depression, don't head for the doctor -- head for the butcher instead, and order yourself the juiciest grass-fed steak he has.
It's nature's best source of mood-boosting B vitamins and brain-building fats. And if that one-two punch isn't enough to knock your depression out, meats also have one other ingredient... a secret ingredient that's even more powerful than antidepressant drugs.
Well, it's not a secret anymore: A new study shows that creatine -- the amino acid favored by body builders -- can outmuscle even the toughest cases of depression.
Five grams of creatine a day for eight weeks chased major depression away completely in half for the women who tried it. Compare that to just a quarter of the women who were given a placebo.
Can't wait eight weeks? You don't have to -- because many of the benefits kicked in almost immediately. At the two-week mark, women given creatine improved by 32 percent on a major scale used to rate depression symptoms.
Those on the placebo "improved" by a measly 3.7 percent.
And at four weeks, the women on creatine more than doubled their improvements to 68 percent, versus 29 percent for those on the placebo.
All of the women were also taking the SSRI drug Lexapro when the study began.
So if I have any problem with the study, it's the lack of a group that took creatine WITHOUT Lexapro -- because I'd bet a steak dinner that even by itself, creatine would lead to big-time improvements in depression symptoms.
The best natural sources of creatine are, of course, meats and fish. But you won't always get enough from food alone -- and if that's your story, try a supplement. You'll find them in any vitamin shop, but avoid the ones in the bodybuilding aisle aimed at neckless gym rats.
Stick to supplements aimed at sane people instead.