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The UK is taking an unprecedented step to fight depression


Britain is offering free talk therapy to all Pin It
Photo: Stocksy/Bisual Studio

Even with the World Health Organization naming depression as the world’s biggest health threat and numerous celebrities opening up about their struggles, many people still aren’t getting the help they need. The sad truth is, it’s tough to afford therapy—even if you have insurance. Across the pond, the UK has its own solution: offering it to everyone, free.

All across the country, clinics have started offering no-cost talk therapy for anyone who wants it, whether it’s to address depression, anxiety, or another mental health issue. The New York Times reports that it’s a step toward a bigger initiative making all mental health care free. Considering over a million people are taking advantage of the services, according to the Times, it’s clear there’s a need.

Over a million people are taking advantage of the services, so it’s clear there’s a need.

And it’s not the only action England is taking when it comes to addressing mental health. ICYMI, Kate Middleton, Prince William, and Prince Harry are spearheading a huge campaign focusing on why it’s important to not keep your depressive or anxious thoughts bottled up. Truly walking the walk, the royal brothers have been especially open about how hard losing their mom was, something they’ve famously kept quiet about before.

And if you’re a Brit scrolling Instagram, you’ve likely come across ads in your feed for mental health services, which is pretty savvy considering a recent study deemed the app the worst social media platform for young people, brain-wise.

More people are being open about their mental health issues here in the States, too, so the British initiative is one to watch closely. We’re not holding our breath for free therapy for all at this moment (when even life-saving care for kids is currently up for debate in Congress). But when public health is a hotly debated topic, it’s never a bad thing to have other success stories to point to—especially to fight what the WHO is calling the “leading cause of ill health.”

If you think you might be suffering from depression, here’s how to know if you have the high-functioning kind. If you do, consider filling up on these mood-boosting foods.