Altostrata

Important topics about tests, supplements, treatments, diet

27 posts in this topic

Here are some topics discussing tests, supplements, herbs, and treatments that may answer your questions.

No matter what you read about "natural" supplements or herbs, or even if an alternative practitioner, naturopath, or integrative doctor recommends them, you cannot treat withdrawal syndrome as though it is "natural" depression.

In "natural" depression, your nervous system is normal and it is operating your body properly. In withdrawal syndrome, your nervous system is struggling to get back to normal operation. Don't try to speed this along with anything that may be stimulating, or you may further unbalance it.

SAM-E and other supplements that act on serotonin, including St. John's Wort, are not recommended for people with withdrawal syndrome. They tend to be stimulating in a way that most of us really do not need.

Many herbs also have unusual side effects in people with withdrawal syndrome.

Whatever you try, understand you may be hypersensitive to that particular substance or treatment. If you are trying an herb or supplement, take a tiny fraction of a normal dose and see how you react. Don't think you're going to smack a symptom down with a big dose of anything. More is not better when your system is sensitized by withdrawal.

Try herbs or supplements one by one. Don't take a bunch of supplements at once. If you have a bad reaction, you won't know which substance caused it. For this reason, we don't recommend "mixed" supplements, such as B vitamin supplements or sleep supplements with multiple ingredients.

We also don't recommend programs that promise you a fast recovery. Generally, they are overpriced and contain common supplements you can find yourself at lower prices. You will want to try those supplements one by one anyway, as taking them all together may cause unpleasant reactions.
 
See Don't waste your money on these supplements

Click on the links and add to these topics if you wish:

_______________________________________
CHECK FOR DRUG AND SUPPLEMENT INTERACTIONS !!!!!!!

Drug Interactions Checker -- use it to reduce your drug burden
 
_______________________________________
BASIC SUPPLEMENT TOOLKIT

King of supplements: Omega-3 fatty acids (fish oil)

Magnesium, nature's calcium channel blocker

 

_______________________________________
REDUCING CORTISOL, THE ANXIETY HORMONE
 
Reducing cortisol and waking with panic or anxiety *

_______________________________________
AMINO ACIDS

5-HTP (5-hydroxytryptophan) and l-tryptophan

L-arginine An amino acid good for sleep?

L-glycine for sleep?

Update on milk peptides for sleep: Our friend Lactium again *

SAM-e (S-adenosyl-L-methionine)

Taurine (L-taurine amino acid)
 
L-Theanine for anxiety, insomnia

Be careful with l-tyrosine

whey protein isolate *

_______________________________________
SUPPLEMENTS AND HERBS
 
Can you take too many supplements?
 
Supplements - how long should I give them?
 
CoQ10

Curcumin -- helps neurons to recover? Supplement derived from Indian spice turmeric

Magnesium, nature's calcium channel blocker *

Melatonin for sleep: Many people find it helpful *

Omega-3 fatty acids (fish oil) *

Valerian Root

_______________________________________
TESTS

Pharmacogenetics Testing

Thyroid symptoms

What lab testing is reasonable prior to starting or tapering?

The trouble with brain scans -- fMRI, QEEG, or SPECT -- for psychiatric problems
 
Invalid: Urine testing for neurotransmitters in the brain
 
_______________________________________
TREATMENTS

Liver detox: A good idea?

Ask Shanti about homeopathy

_______________________________________
VITAMINS

Vitamin A and beta-carotene

Vitamin B3 (niacin, niacinamide)
 
Vitamin B8 (inositol)

Vitamin B12

Vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol or calcitriol)

Got too much vitamin D - Now what?

Deplin -- the L-methylfolate swindle

_______________________________________
DIET AND DIGESTION
 
That acid reflux pill may be causing your health problems
 
Digestive problems: Nausea, Diarrhea, Bloating, GERD
 
Food sensitivities
 
Gluten Sensitivity Vs. Celiac Disease Vs. Gluten Intolerance...
 
Histamine food intolerance
 
Diets for Supporting Recovery: Restriction, Ketosis, Raw, Low Carb

SCD/GAPS/Paleo Diets
 
Probiotics and gut health
* Many people find this helpful for withdrawal symptoms. Always try a small amount first to see how your system reacts.

Edited by Altostrata
updated

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Not to sound like a broken record but don't assume that so called benign supplements are harmless.

 

I only took two Trader Joes probiotics yesterday in the morning and ended up with blood in my urine. Did a google search and there were other people who had experienced this.

 

Perhaps I am an usual case but I just wanted to warn people to be careful.

 

CS

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We have often warned that the supplement industry is unregulated and you  can never be sure what you are getting when you buy them.  Four major retailers in the United States have been ordered to stop selling their house brands of a number of supplements because they contained nothing but fillers.  It would be a good idea for anyone thinking about taking supplements to read this article.

 

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/crime/new-your-attorney-general-targets-supplements-at-major-retailers/ar-AA8VmjN

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It's not as if the FDA is doing a good job regulating anything. After all, I certainly didn't see ANY warnings on ANY of my prescription paperwork about withdrawal, permanent side effects, or about side effects or withdrawal symptoms that last months or years. The FDA notoriously euphemizes side effects and is blatantly disregarding even admitting there is such a thing as withdrawal damage from psych meds.

 

So, while the supplement industry maybe unregulated, I seriously doubt that it can possibly be any more damaging than the medication industry and the FDA's shoddy, irresponsible, barely existent regulation of psychiatric medications.

 

I think the most reasonable approach is what Alto stated above: that we need to keep in mind that our medication damaged/withdrawal damaged bodies do not react to supplements the same way that healthy bodies do.

 

Healthy people should have more of a fear of prescription medications than of supplements. We med-damaged lot, though, are a different story and now must be cautious of EVERYTHING.

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It's not as if the FDA is doing a good job regulating anything. After all, I certainly didn't see ANY warnings on ANY of my prescription paperwork about withdrawal, permanent side effects, or about side effects or withdrawal symptoms that last months or years. The FDA notoriously euphemizes side effects and is blatantly disregarding even admitting there is such a thing as withdrawal damage from psych meds.

 

So, while the supplement industry maybe unregulated, I seriously doubt that it can possibly be any more damaging than the medication industry and the FDA's shoddy, irresponsible, barely existent regulation of psychiatric medications.

 

I think the most reasonable approach is what Alto stated above: that we need to keep in mind that our medication damaged/withdrawal damaged bodies do not react to supplements the same way that healthy bodies do.

 

Healthy people should have more of a fear of prescription medications than of supplements. We med-damaged lot, though, are a different story and now must be cautious of EVERYTHING.

 

I have to agree with you on most of what you say about the FDA.  On the other hand I don't want to take supplements that are questionable either... not really.  I want to know that what the labels says is in the bottle is actually in the bottle. Research your brands supposedly from my own research the Now brand is one of the better ones. I am sure there are others. 

 

One more point about this that has helped me decide what I am going to try.... keep in mind I have reacted badly early on to everything I put in my mouth food and supplements.... so I am extra cautious having learned everything the hard way.  Low dose to start is a must 1/6 th the recommended dose is what I learned at antidepressantfacts.com and it has served me well.  WAIT at the low dose after starting something too as it may take a few days or longer to tell. 

 

This I just found out a few wks ago... if your looking to take a supplement search it to see if it is used on kids under 12 in Europe.  If it is then it has been tested and you can be confident that what the label says is actually in the bottle.  There is a law in Europe that states all supplements meant for kids under 12 must be tested. 

 

This is one of the reason I decided to take the L.Reuteri  made by Bio Protectis it is tested patented and given to babies for colic. At least I know it was what I took was what the label says. 

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i havent read through everything yet, but i wanted to mention something i didnt see listed, in case anyone wants to add/discuss/research it: l-lysine complex as a supplement for some auto-immune related problems like canker sores.  (some people experience help from it, some dont, but i, personally, have.)

 

i have to dive in to all those PPI replacement threads because ive been trying to ditch mine for years and havent found a good coping taperer yet (but reading about how rebound acid overproduction works very much like serotonin oversensitivity in withdrawal syndrome reminded me of the importance of gradual changes instead of just dropping things).

 

great topics, and lively discussions in the threads ive read so far.  thanks a lot, everyone, for your work here.

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We have often warned that the supplement industry is unregulated and you  can never be sure what you are getting when you buy them.  Four major retailers in the United States have been ordered to stop selling their house brands of a number of supplements because they contained nothing but fillers.  It would be a good idea for anyone thinking about taking supplements to read this article.

 

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/crime/new-your-attorney-general-targets-supplements-at-major-retailers/ar-AA8VmjN

Is the Big Pharma industry regulated, with proper trials?  I think not.  

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Here are some topics discussing tests, supplements, herbs, and treatments that may answer your questions.

 

No matter what you read about "natural" supplements or herbs, or even if an alternative practitioner, naturopath, or integrative doctor recommends them, you cannot treat withdrawal syndrome as though it is "natural" depression.

 

In "natural" depression, your nervous system is normal and it is operating your body properly. In withdrawal syndrome, your nervous system is struggling to get back to normal operation. Don't try to speed this along with anything that may be stimulating, or you may further unbalance it.

 

SAM-E and other supplements that act on serotonin, including St. John's Wort, are not recommended for people with withdrawal syndrome. They tend to be stimulating in a way that most of us really do not need.

 

Many herbs also have unusual side effects in people with withdrawal syndrome.

 

Whatever you try, understand you may be hypersensitive to that particular substance or treatment. If you are trying an herb or supplement, take a tiny fraction of a normal dose and see how you react. Don't think you're going to smack a symptom down with a big dose of anything. More is not better when your system is sensitized by withdrawal.

 

Try herbs or supplements one by one. Don't take a bunch of supplements at once. If you have a bad reaction, you won't know which substance caused it. For this reason, we don't recommend "mixed" supplements, such as B vitamin supplements or sleep supplements with multiple ingredients.

 

We also don't recommend programs that promise you a fast recovery. Generally, they are overpriced and contain common supplements you can find yourself at lower prices. You will want to try those supplements one by one anyway, as taking them all together may cause unpleasant reactions.

 

See Don't waste your money on these supplements

 

Click on the links and add to these topics if you wish:

 

_______________________________________

CHECK FOR DRUG AND SUPPLEMENT INTERACTIONS !!!!!!!

 

Drug Interactions Checker -- use it to reduce your drug burden

 

_______________________________________

REDUCING CORTISOL, THE ANXIETY HORMONE

 

Reducing cortisol and waking with panic or anxiety *

 

_______________________________________

AMINO ACIDS

 

5-HTP (5-hydroxytryptophan) and tryptophan

 

L-arginine An amino acid good for sleep?

 

L-glycine for sleep?

 

Update on milk peptides for sleep: Our friend Lactium again *

 

SAM-e (S-adenosyl-L-methionine)

 

Taurine (L-taurine amino acid)

 

L-Theanine for anxiety, insomnia

 

whey protein isolate *

 

_______________________________________

SUPPLEMENTS AND HERBS

 

Can you take too many supplements?

 

Supplements - how long should I give them?

 

CoQ10

 

Curcumin -- helps neurons to recover? Supplement derived from Indian spice turmeric

 

Magnesium, nature's calcium channel blocker *

 

Melatonin for sleep: Many people find it helpful *

 

Omega-3 fatty acids (fish oil) *

 

Valerian Root

 

_______________________________________

TESTS

 

Pharmacogenetics Testing

 

Thyroid symptoms

 

What lab testing is reasonable prior to starting or tapering?

 

The trouble with brain scans -- fMRI, QEEG, or SPECT -- for psychiatric problems

 

_______________________________________

TREATMENTS

 

Liver detox: A good idea?

 

Ask Shanti about homeopathy

 

_______________________________________

VITAMINS

 

Vitamin A and beta-carotene

 

Vitamin B3 (niacin, niacinamide)

 

Vitamin B12

 

Vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol or calcitriol)

 

Got too much vitamin D - Now what?

 

Deplin -- the L-methylfolate swindle

 

_______________________________________

DIET AND DIGESTION

 

That acid reflux pill may be causing your health problems

 

Digestive problems: Nausea, Diarrhea, Bloating, GERD

 

Food sensitivities

 

Gluten Sensitivity Vs. Celiac Disease Vs. Gluten Intolerance...

 

Histamine food intolerance

 

SCD/GAPS/Paleo Diets

 

Probiotics and gut health

* Many people find this helpful for withdrawal symptoms. Always try a small amount first to see how your system reacts.

 

It should probably be noted here the many supplements are denatured by the low pH of the stomach, or simply deactivated by the low pH of the stomach.  Many vitamins and minerals have finite saturation points after which excess either builds up in the body in toxic ways (all fat soluable vitamins, iron, etc) or is excreted in the urine. 

 

It should also be noted that no supplements require any testiing whatsoever for quality control (or at least MINIMAL testing compared to things such as food, drinks, or over the counter, or prescription drugs).  These supplements are MINIMALLY regulated, and often come from DUBIOUS sources - regardless of what your alternative practitioner tells you.  Unless they go out into their garden and pick the herbs themselves and show them to you - scepticism is warranted.  If you think drugs like SSRIS which undergo FDA testing can cause serious injury, how do you think drugs which have NO guidelines are going to affect you?   There's absolutely NO safeguard against rat feces or other contaminates being entered into your medications.  Some of the larger companies such as johnson and johnson have more rigorous product quality control than the obscure no named sources.  If you're going to take a supplement, choose a WELL KNOWN brand, such as centrium versus that brand that your local eastern medicine practitioner recommends.  I wouldn't trust a sensitive nervous system with a chemical that has very little quality control - there could be irritants that are not listed because the herb was sitting on a factory floor in Mexico for 3 years prior to being bottled and shipped to your local Rite Aid. 

 

The only supplements that are really worthwhile are multivitamins, and some isolated vitamins and minerals, if you happen to have some sort of deficiency.

 

RARELY have I seen anyone who is taking supplements correctly - they are mostly all just a complete waste of money and a placebo pill that costs you $15 bucks for a little bottle.  It might feel nice to believe that you're getting a significant benefit from these supplements, but there's a very good chance that all you're getting is more expensive urine as the drug is excreted into the toilet bowl.

 

It should also be noted here that many alternative medicine practitioners prescribe supplements like doctors prescribe pharmaceutical medications.  The brands that they prescribe are often times tailored for that specific doctor - but this is nothing more than an elaborate scam.  the drugs these doctors recommend are often manufactured by the same companies that supply to other labels - but they offer a special service for making your own specific brand so it seems tailored specifically for a purpose like homeopathy or naturopathy. 

 

If you eat a well balanced diet with your daily dose of fruits, vegetables, red meat, fish, etc etc etc, you will get 100% of all of your dietary needs of all vitamins and minerals and supplements.  All your omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids will be supplied, and you will not need a single supplement.  If you get out into the sun for 30 minutes a day, you don't need vitamin D.  During the winter months, you may benefit from a vitamin D supplement - but orally ingested Vitamin D is VERY poorly absorbed and utilized into D3 in your blood - so you need MEGA doses of it to just get the same thing you will get if you lay out in the sun for 30 minutes.

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It's interesting to note that just a couple of months ago three of the largest retailers in the United States were forced to stop selling several name brand supplements because when they were tested they contained none of the active ingredient they claimed to supply.  They were made entirely of "harmless" fillers. 

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I just read on a pharmacist's blog that she recommends Pure Encapsulations.

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Anyone use Standard Process Supplements?

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Name the test to help avoid drug reactions please.

 

I don't think there is any such tests, some genetic testing looks at liver enzymes which can tell if you are more likely to develop a higher or lower blood level from some drugs than expected. I had Genomind, required by doctor. It is pretty expensive if not with a dr. Who works with them.

 

In other supplement issues, I am finding lemon balm to be helpful, but at a lower dose than dr. recommended (although he recommended starting small as well). He said usual dose is 1000mg twice daily, which made me irritable but did help sleep, doing better on 400 mg twice daily.

 

Found. Examine.com to be interesting as to what mechanism of action for some botanicals might be.

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It's interesting to note that just a couple of months ago three of the largest retailers in the United States were forced to stop selling several name brand supplements because when they were tested they contained none of the active ingredient they claimed to supply.  They were made entirely of "harmless" fillers. 

Wow Gotzsche is right "We cannot assume that vitamin pills must be healthy'. pg 5' Deadly medicines....'

or i guess we cannot assume we are swallowing what we are told we are swallowing.

 

Check out this occurrence at a school just north of Cape Foulwind...

Basically GSK asserted their drink contained vitamin c but 2 school girls proved for science homework it contained ...wait for it...'zero' vitamin c.

Read what happened next!

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2007/mar/27/schoolsworldwide.foodanddrink

 

Here is  Gotzsche's full paragraph.

 

We also need essential minerals, e.g. zinc and copper, to make our enzymes work. But if we ingest too much, we get intoxicated. Thus, given what we know about the human body, we cannot assume that vitamin pills must be healthy. It is the earliest memory I have of a medical prophylactic intervention, and it took about 50 years before it became known whether vitamins are beneficial or harmful. A 2008 review of the placebo-controlled trials of antioxidants (beta-carotene, vitamin A and vitamin E) showed that they increase overall mortality.

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I tried magnesium citrate just 25 mgs and it made me very anxious. I tried it twice. I have always been able to take vitamin c. Not any more. My husband suggested I start taking it again. I took one this morning and just about went through the roof for several hours. From now on i am staying away from all vitamins and supplements.

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Epsom salts in the bath is the gentlest form of magnesium - it may be worth a try.

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We have often warned that the supplement industry is unregulated and you  can never be sure what you are getting when you buy them.  Four major retailers in the United States have been ordered to stop selling their house brands of a number of supplements because they contained nothing but fillers.  It would be a good idea for anyone thinking about taking supplements to read this article.

 

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/crime/new-your-attorney-general-targets-supplements-at-major-retailers/ar-AA8VmjN

Yes, that's why it's important to be in-tune with your body and reactions to supplements, not being ignorant but not being so overaware that you become utterly stilted into a walking dramatization of placebo-effect, either. Also, I only buy from companies willing to present a certificate of analysis.

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At antidepressantfacts.com I read a good bit of advice about supplements and vitamins 

start at 1/6 th the recommended dose and work your way up from there if your going to have a reaction it is best to keep to a min.  I have had reactions from vitamins that take 6wks to 2 months to pass and fallout from drugs that take longer. 

 

Start low and stay low for at least a wk then go up very slowly. 

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At antidepressantfacts.com I read a good bit of advice about supplements and vitamins 

start at 1/6 th the recommended dose and work your way up from there if your going to have a reaction it is best to keep to a min.  I have had reactions from vitamins that take 6wks to 2 months to pass and fallout from drugs that take longer. 

 

Start low and stay low for at least a wk then go up very slowly. 

Yeah, everything in moderation. I've gotten some very pronounced side-effects even from simple stuff. I guess some of it can be fillers, or preservatives in particular brands of supplements. One of the core things to remember, is that some supplement companies are run by the same people that run pharmaceutical companies. Centrum, possibly Vitafusion (gummies etc). Then other mainline brands that are advertised excessively, and then you have some scam operations like Prevagin, a pill which has no evidence to it and is routinely marketed on TV about 12 times a day on every channel.

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Just wanted to share a smoothie with about 1000 calories for those of you like me with food sensitivities I tolerate very well

2 cups coconut milk

1 tablespoon olive oil

4 tablespoons organic smooth peanut butter

1whole avocado

1 banana

1/2 cup dry oats

 

Very nutritious as well! Hugs and kisses!

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I almost got sucked into all this testing. I am glad I came here before wasting my money on lots of tests ordered from a NeuroScience naturopath. I honestly think I uncovered a huge scam going on at HillParkMedical in Sebastopol. I am going to try and get my money back from the initial visit.

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I am an advocate of checking with Consumer Labs

 

They have extensive reviews of tests - what works, what doesn't, and they test individual products.

 

Subscription costs about $30 a year, but if you spend some money on supplements (I do) it's worth it.

 

Or, if you have a specific question, PM me, and I'll look it up.  Keep in mind, they only test American brands, and probably only test about 10-25% of what is available on the market - but it's a good start.  I try to post warnings and information when I find something pertinent there.

 

Alto mentioned a recommendation for Pure Encapsulations - I've only bought their products once or twice (they are expensive).  But I did a quick random check of Consumer Labs reviews, and even though they are often twice as expensive as other brands, they always get approval, and there were no warnings against that brand.

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Posted (edited)

 

MOD NOTE:  Please see following posts advising caution.

 

The supplements I have been using which I have found are helping me a lot are turmeric + piperine capsules, I have managed to get off all my medication and think these have helped achieve that,

 

I have also been using a herb called mucuna pruriens which i find gives me a almost instant boost in my mood, it is known to boost dopamine levels, there is a good explanantion of how it works on here which is where I have been getting mine:

 

https://www.healthessentialsdirect.co.uk/products/buy-mucuna-pruriens-powder-l-dopa

 

I have been mostly fine since quitting my meds except from some insomnia which I have wrote about here:

 

Studies show turmeric reduces inflammation in the brain and even helps it heal a lot faster, I would advise anyone struggling to try it,

 

 

Edited by ChessieCat
Added mod note

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dj2010 - please be very careful with any substance, even a natural herbal one, that is or claims to be psychoactive.

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14 minutes ago, scallywag said:

dj2010 - please be very careful with any substance, even a natural herbal one, that is or claims to be psychoactive.

yes you righ its can be dangerous

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yes it might be best if I stop taking this one, I have tried countless supplements over the last few years and nearly all of them have had bad effects, the most recent being vitamin D capsules which are supposed to help sleep but they had opposite effect and I couldn't sleep at all, the other being 5 HTP which is also supposed to help sleep but I woke up 2 hours after falling a sleep with racing thoughts and lots of energy, I could not get back to sleep and felt terrible all day,

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