Seasonal Affective Disorder Traditional Medicine

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Seasonal Affective Disorder Traditional Medicine

No studies that were specific to SAD were found in the medical journals. However,Patient QI found numerous studies on the use of traditional medicine for general depression which substantiate their use for other forms of depression such as SAD. 


Patient QI found two recent studies that demonstrated Acupuncture can have a beneficial effect as a treatment for depression. The first study evaluated acupuncture as a supportive treatment to conventional serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) in the treatment of depression.  Participants were split into two groups and one group had SSRI treatment alone and the other group had the same SSRIs and 6 weeks of acupuncture treatment.  Results showed that acupuncture improved the antidepressant treatment by 33.4% compared to the control group and reduced conventional medicine side effects such as sleep disorder and anxiety.

The second study looked at the ability of auricular electroacupuncture  to aid conventional medication in patients with depression. Results showed that the treatment improved aspects of quality of life and showed clear stimulatory effects on measurements such as heart rate.


A study carried out in 2011 investigated whether homeopathy is as good as a conventional treatment (fluoxetine) in the treatment of acute depression. Patients received either 20mg per day of fluoxetine or an individualised Q potency homeopathic remedy.  Statistical analysis of results showed that homeopathic treatment was as good as fluoxetine treatment for acute depression in patients with moderate to severe depression. There was no difference in the number of patients reporting side effects but the fluoxetine group reported stronger side effects and more patients interrupted treatment compared to the  homeopathy group.


Royal jelly is a traditional supplement used in depression.  A recent study investigated the ability of  an unsaturated fatty acid that is uniquely present in Royal Jelly to reduce symptoms of depression in an animal model.  The fatty acid (10-hydroxy-trans-2-decenoic Acid) was given once a day for three weeks and proved to have a protective effect against depression.  

The Seasonal Affective Disorder Traditional Medicine page is updated as new information is published in the medical journals.

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