Relief from Depression: The Hypothesis and Initial Practice

I feel as if I have lost my fire for life, which is ironic since I am a Pitta-Kapha person and fire is what gives Pittas their zest. I realized that a lot of my symptoms were showing up as symptoms of too much Kapha. I hypothesized that my depression could be, in part, due to an excess of Kapha and that following Ayurvedic guidelines to pacify Kapha could alleviate some of my symptoms.

I decided that I would keep to a fairly Pitta diet to keep my Pitta pacified as I went after my Kapha with lifestyle changes. I decided to force myself to be active both in my mind and my body. I listened to upbeat music and surrounded myself with invigorating people. I have had a strong dislike of being social lately and being around people was hard, but ultimately rewarding. Making kicharee with Beth, surrounded by laughing and shared stories, made me feel loved. The next day however, that sinking feeling of depression was back, strong as ever.

Getting up before 6:00 am was not very fun and made me really irritable but working out and doing more vigorous asana made me feel amazing. As a Molecular Biologist I know that a good physical stimulation can release an amazing amount of serotonin, which is what all of my old medication was doing artificially. I tried to give my mind a good workout by not reading and studying in my house and instead reading out in public, surrounded by people. I reread the Bhagavad Gita and read the Tao Te Ching, the Upanishads, and the Hatha Yoga Pradipika among other things. I forced myself to explore all the things being thrown at me. It worked but almost too well. I feel like I can’t get enough information now.