In day to day life, we frequently use the term “Depression”, but mostly we refer it as sadness. Sadness is not depression. Sadness is natural and it occurs for various reasons but depression is more severe than sadness. Depression changes brain or it damages brain if left unchecked for long period of time. Depression is long term sadness.

It’s symptoms are …

Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, helplessness, or hopelessness

Loss of interest in usual activities, including sex

Difficulty concentrating and complaints of poor memory

Insomnia or oversleeping

Appetite changes, which may include weight gain or loss

Fatigue, lack of energy

Thoughts of suicide or death

Among the Kaluli tribe of New Guinea, depression is nearly non-existent: The anthropologist, Edward Schieffelin who lived with them found only one instance of depression among over two thousand tribes people in nine years. But in our modern society, depression is common, one out of every 10 experiences depression. What causes Kaluli tribe to become depression resistant?

We will find out the answers….

Has our brain changed at all?

A 99.9% of the total human evolution time has spent on hunter-gather activity. Our brain developed and shaped maximum by hunter-gathering way. Very recently our lifestyle changed to agricultural way and in last 200 years we changed to industrial way. But our brain hasn't changed at all (it changed a little but it’s core nature is still hunter-gather style). Most of the natural selection and evolution of human species has occurred in the hunter-gather period.

In other words, our brain is not yet ready for this present modern civilized world. It is still old tribal brain. So, to compensate it, our brain developed a new illness, Depression, which our ancestors didn't had at all.

Depression is dangerous illness but It can be defeated..

Causes of depression

Individual may have different reasons for their depression but inside the brain it is same for all of us. Someone might become depressed due to the death of loved one and another person might become depressed due of loss of job but inside the brain it will activate same pain circuitry for both of them. Depression causes pain (emotional and physical). It is connected with the pain circuitry of the brain.

To find out the solutions for depression, we need to see what our ancestors did different than us.

6 things that our ancestors did but we do not ..

1) Physical Activity (Exercise)

Our ancestors did intensive physical work. Physical exercise is medicine. It increases blood and oxygen flow in the brain. Physical exercise increases happiness hormones- dopamine and serotonin. Physical exercise enhances mental sharpness and it has anti-aging effect.

2) Sunlight

Our ancestors had enough exposure of sunlight but we work in closed room, we play indoor games, we use TV for entertainment. Sun light is necessary for vitamin -D

3) Omega-3 fatty acid

Our brain mostly made of fats. We need 2 types of fats, Omega-6 and Omega-3. A 1:1 or 2:1 ratio of Omega-6 to Omega-3 is healthy for the brain. Omega-3 has anti-depressing effect. But in today's fast food or processed food world, we are getting very less omega-3 fatty acid and which is another reason for depression.

4) Healthy Sleep

Our ancestors had minimum 7-8 hours proper sleep. They used to sleep early and rise early. But we are sleep deprived generation. A proper sleep is necessary for the effective functioning of the brain and body.

5) Social Connection

This is very important, social group was everything for our ancestors. They lived in group, they moved in group and it was impossible for them to live alone. We live on technology. We use phone, social media for social connection. Now days we lack true belonging, close friends.

6) Anti-Rumination

Our ancestors didn't care much about our past experiences and worries. But we are stuck with our past bad experiences and bad feelings. We need to shift our focus from bad experiences and bad feelings.

Author's Bio: 

Founder & Author of is a website made for helping people in solving their emotional problems and motivating them to live their dream life. You can ask me any questions.