Depression is one of the most common mental disorders in the world. Symptoms include sadness, lethargy and a general loss of interest in life. Anxiety, also a common disorder, is characterised by constant worry and nervousness. According to a New Report by Global Industry Analysts, the global market for anxiety disorders have already reached $5.9 billion in 2017 and it keeps increasing. The US registers the highest number of anxiety disorder cases annually. The country incurs a cost of over $42 million ever year for anxiety disorders, which accounts for almost one-third of the overall cost for mental illnesses. About 27% of the European population suffers from brain disorders, with depression being the most prevalent health problem in several EU-Member States. However, Asia-Pacific is forecast to register the fastest growth during the analysis period.
Key factors driving market growth include rising stress levels that are further augmented by the recent financial crisis, increasing incidence and prevalence of anxiety disorders, growing aging population globally, existence of significant unmet needs, and the development of novel therapeutics.
Ingredients to Relieve Depression and Anxiety
1. Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Studies indicate that people who consume omega-3s regularly are less likely to be depressed. What's more, when people with depression or anxiety start taking omega-3 supplements, their symptoms improve. There are three types of omega-3 fatty acids: ALA, EPA and DHA. Of the three, EPA appears to be the best at fighting depression. One study even found EPA as effective against depression as a common antidepressant drug.
2. Ginseng Extract
Ginseng helps in depressive disorders in multiple ways: it regulates neurotransmitters, supports neuronal plasticity, reduces inflammation in the brain and relieves stress hormone levels. It can be a potential add-on therapy for preventing and treating depressive disorders but more research is required to ascertain its safety with conventional therapy.
L-Theanine comes from green and black tea, both of which are often deemed as the best natural teas for anxiety relief. It acts as a mild anxioltic (anti-anxiety), which is amazing for calming your nerves when heading into a situation that makes you anxious.
This anti-anxiety supplement comes from the ashwagandha plant, which is a small shrub native to Africa and India. It’s been used to treat various conditions since ancient times. It’s an Ayurvedic healing herb that’s highly recognised for its rejuvenating and restorative benefits. Specifically to anxiety, it’s often dubbed as one of the best natural supplements, as it helps the body adapt to physical and emotional stressors, while also lowering your cortisol levels (stress hormones) and mimicking GABA (your central nervous system’s most important neurotransmitters).
5. Vitamin B Complex
All of the B vitamins are essential for proper energy production and stress management because the eight forms are needed for proper brain functioning. Those with anxiety and depression have been found to have low levels of all B vitamins. Look for a supplement without any synthetic or artificial colours and fillers. It should have all eight forms (B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B7, B9, and B12).
GABA (Gamma Aminobutyric Acid) is a chemical that naturally occurs in the brain. It is known for relieving anxiety, and is known as a popular mood support ingredient. It can address the symptoms of PMS and ADHD.
7. St. John’s Wort Extract
St. John’s wort is one of key ingredients of most anti-anxiety and mood enhancing supplements. It is a traditional cure for light to moderate depression. It decreases the insomnia and anxiety related to it, and in conjunction with folic acid, can probably deal with some heavier forms of depression. St. John’s wort is also effective for dealing with menopausal symptoms, and can help in the minimisation of the symptoms of somatisation disorder, where the body will feel phantom pains due to mental or emotional states. This plant extract is also known as probably having an effect on Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) and some forms Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder.
Valerin is a perfect ingredient found in most mood enhancers as it lowers the levels of anxiety, and can be used to combat the effects of chronic fatigue syndrome. It also tones down restlessness, making it a mild holistic sedative.
9. Vitamin D
This vitamin plays a vital role in mental health and well-being. People with seasonal affective disorder (SAD), or depression during the winter months, have been found to have very low vitamin D levels during this time. Anxiety is often a symptom of SAD, and recent studies have found that vitamin D has receptors in the brain that play a part in overall mentality and mood. While research is still ongoing, it is thought that vitamin D as an anxiety supplement during the winter months can help relieve symptoms.
10. Liquorice Root
Liquorice root has a relaxing effect on the mind, especially if anxiety is caused by a medical illness. It is also a potent anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, antibiotic, and even anti-cancerous agent. Liquorice root can be found in capsule form at most local drug or whole food stores.
11. Vitamin C
Vitamin C is another potential ingredient that act as a natural antidepressant by increasing serotonin levels.
12. Ginkgo Biloba Extract
This ingredient is also effective for relieving anxiety and its symptoms and it also boosts the memory power and concentration levels. It can also treat serious disorders like dementia, vision problems, pains and aches, PMS (Premenstrual Syndrome), dizziness, vertigo and so on.
Relieving depression is the sub-function of mood support, which is one of the six functions that Kangcare Bioindustry focuses on. The above ingredients in Kangcare’s portfolio is highly versatile and can be integrated into a number of formulations, like beverage, candy, energy bar, pastry, pulvis, granules, capsule, soft gel, tablet, jelly, oral liquid. These formulations drew wide attention at Vitafoods and HIC.