Alternative treatments for depression such as the herbal remedy St John's wort and the amino acid derivative SAM-e have gained popularity in recent years.

  1. St. John's wort is usually as effective against depressions as other modern medication, again with fewer side effects, and it is widely prescribed for depression in Europe.
  2. Tryptophan dietary supplements, although banned in many countries due to impurities that caused a blood disease, have also been used as natural antidepressants.
  3. Dietary supplements of 5-HTP, a chemical the body forms from tryptophan and uses to make serotonin, have shown some promising research results but need further study.