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One of the reasons I wrote my latest book, Banish the Blues Now, is that scientific research shows that most individuals with major depressive disorder report only a 50 percent decrease in symptoms with the use of the standard allopathic treatments.

Banish the Blues Now just hit No. 1 on Amazon in new releases in Popular Psychology and Medicine.

The reason that you can confidently turn to holistic alternative medicine is that it actually works.

Let’s take yoga for one very good example:

  1. Practicing yoga has been scientifically proven to raise the levels of GABA, a calming neurotransmitter in your brain.
  2. In addition, slow breathing patterns that stimulate the vagus nerve, similar to those used in yoga, have been shown to increase your levels of prolactin, dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin – chemicals all essential for you to feel happy.

Do I honestly think that practicing yoga can solve all your problems?

No, but it can make you feel a whole lot better.

Side effects of even just one yoga practice include increased energy, better sleep, decreased pain and healthier body.

Due to the success of my recent blog, Five Poses You Can Do Right Now to Heal Your Back Pain, I decided to write another article with my five favorite yoga poses for healing depression naturally without drugs.

Big picture, a few thoughts:

  1. Scientific research shows that short term, exercise alone is equally effective for healing depression as antidepressants. Long term, the recent Duke University study showed that exercise alone is more effective for alleviating depression than antidepressants OR antidepressants and exercise.
  2. I feel the truth of the matter is that any yoga poses you are able to do will make you feel better. However, if I had to narrow it down, this would be my prescription.

My top 5 yoga techniques for healing depression naturally:

  1. The Container Exercise.
  2. Eight Minutes to Inner Peace Breathing Exercises.
  3. Sun salutes. Watch A series sun salutes at this link. Follow B series sun salutes here. Learn C series salutes at this link.
  4. Tibetan Rites. Read the article here.  Follow the videos here by looking for yoga exercises 69 through 73.
  5. Shoulder stand. Watch the video here. Or follow instructions for a restorative shoulder stand version at this link.

When you are depressed, you are stuck in your emotions. The container exercise creates a safe space so that you can feel and release whatever has been bothering you so that you can begin to shift out of that state.

Yogic breathing exercises allow you to release your emotions without necessarily having to talk them through.

In addition, when you suffer the blues, your nervous system is stuck in the parasympathetic side. Sun salutes and Tibetan rites balance your nervous system.

Finally, shoulder stand resets your endocrine system. B.K.S. Iyengar referred to shoulder stand as the most powerfully healing of all the yoga poses, so if you only have time to do one thing, for God’s sake do shoulder stand, even if you can only manage the restorative version I demonstrate here using two yoga bolsters and a strap.

As a yoga teacher of 19 years experience, I can personally attest that many days when I felt my worst, if I simply got on my mat and practiced, I felt dramatically better afterwards.

My yoga practice has never resolved all my problems, but it has given me the inner peace to accept life as it comes.

If you are feeling depressed, do me a favor and try this routine.

Then email me at catherine@unlimitedenergynow.com  and let me know if you don’t feel much better!


If you would like to learn more about natural healing for depression, please contact Catherine Carrigan at 678-612-8816 or email catherine@unlimitedenergynow.com.


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