'The Weekend Warrior's Survival Guide' - Sarah West
Author: Sarah West
Monday, October 17, 2005
"Take me to a place where the drugs are free, the clubs have no gravity and every shag guarantees an orgasm!," declares Nina in cult British rave-culture film, Human Traffic. Yet you can't defy gravity forever and what goes up, must come down…and down, and down in some cases.
For many, the after-effects of a heavy weekend, particularly when MDMA is involved, aren't pretty with depression a common occurrence. MDMA is mainly taken in pill form and most 'ecstasy tablets,' as my mum would put it, contain some form of MDMA or it counterparts. Serotonin (no, not the DJ) is the main chemical effected in our brain when inducing MDMA and is one of the main chemicals that keeps us happy so it's possible that when you take drugs that contain MDMA you can alter your serotonin capabilities in normal life, thus putting you at risk of being depressed.
So now that we've determined that 'Drugs are bad mkay,' lets have a look at how we can give our brains a better chance of survival in the real world. Depression can be treated in many different ways and it's really important to maintain a healthy body to keep a healthy mind.
Our bodies are governed by chemicals, and to keep them in balance you need give your body the right chemicals by feeding it properly, especially if you're feeding it harmful chemicals on the weekend. In the case of depression, foods that are rich in the Vitamin B are helpful and can be found in eggs, bananas, nuts, and foods that are high in protein. Plus, it can be taken in capsule form (which you're probably more used to) ;) There's also a product called 5HTP on the market and can be ordered online. But this can be quite expensive, so if you're tight on money (which you probably are because you owe your dealer money from the weekend) just stick with fruits, vegies, meats, nuts and eggs. This product should also only be recommended by a medical expert, so if it's something that you think you may be interested in (taking the easy way out) then consult your doctor about its potential effects. And last, but certainly not least, the all important 'multi-vitamin' is one that I can't recommend highly enough. Just taking one multi vitamin a day can give you a lifetime of good health as it can provide you the nutrients that you may not get from food (especially since you probably don't eat all weekend)!
Now there's the hard part: exercise. Doing exercise when you're feeling low is about as hard as a man's cock when watching Dukes of Hazard. But if you get over this initial 'hump' (if you'll pardon the pun); whether it be getting to the gym or putting on your runners and the arm sweat bands that you just bought to wear at the last rave it gets easier. While the harder you exercise the more endorphins you release and the better you feel, even just a 30 minute low intensity walk each day, or even 5 times a week can do you the world of good.
The thing about diet and exercise, though, is that they only really help in the long term. You shouldn't expect to go for a run and eat a banana and feel better. It's a long process and must be followed for a reasonable amount of time to feel any real difference. General good health can prevent many diseases including depression, and if your lifestyle makes you susceptible to depression, then treating your body well in general can lessen the risk and will in turn increase your chances of a healthy life.
And if you've tried all of these things and you're still not feeling happy, well, you're fucked! But seriously, you should probably see a counselor or drug rehabilitation specialist. Just speaking to someone about your problem can really help, and they just may give you some more drugs to take! ;)
On depression in Australia:
The effects of drugs & harm minimisation:
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