February 13, 2012
By Mike Adams
“It’s sad Houston died so young – she sang other people’s songs well. But why isn’t the front page news that she died (like Michael Jackson) from pharmaceutical drugs?” –KTRN
The regretful passing of an American entertainment icon — Whitney Houston — marks yet another sad milestone in the devastating body count of the prescription drug industry. TMZ is now reporting that Whitney Houston was found not with illegal drugs, but prescription drugs that may have killed her or caused her to drown in the bathtub. (http://www.tmz.com/2012/02/11/whitney-houston-prescription-drugs-drow…)
Houston had “a plethora of sedatives including Lorazepam, Valium, Xanax, and a sleeping medication that was found in her hotel room,” reports Radar Online (http://www.radaronline.com/exclusives/2012/02/drugs-whitney-houston-h…).
“The prescription drugs were officially taken into custody by the Beverly Hills Police Department,” the website reported. An autopsy has yet to be performed, and it will reportedly provide more conclusive information about the actual cause of death.
Whitney Houston was also taking Xanax, a psychiatric anti-anxiety drug
According to Fox News, Houston’s family members said she was taking Xanax, a powerful psychtropic drug (http://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/2012/02/12/whitney-houston-dead-…). As NaturalNews has reported many times, mind-altering drugs are known to cause erratic behavior and suicidal thoughts. (http://www.naturalnews.com/032097_antidepressants_suicidal_tendencies…) and (http://www.naturalnews.com/022743.html).
Although Xanax is not an SSRI drug, its side effects include:
• Rage and hostility
• Twitches and tremors
• Mania, agitation
An overdose of Xanax may cause:
Xanax is widely promoted throughout that DSM-IV, the “bible” of modern psychiatry which promotes the use of prescription amphetamines to children (among other bizarre chemical recommendations).
January 23, 2012
By Mike Adams
Falls are the leading cause of accidental death in the elderly population of adults over 65 years of age. A recent study found that elderly people who suffer from dementia are more likely to suffer falls if they are given anti-depressants.
Selective serotonin uptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are frequently prescribed to dementia patients, who often also experience depression. The British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology reported that the risk of elderly injuring themselves from falls was TRIPLED after they were given SSRIs. This class of drugs includes the popular depression drugs Prozac and Paxil, which have long been considered first-line therapy for treatment of depression in older adults.
The high risk of falls following treatment with older anti-depressant medications is well established, as these drugs have long been shown to cause unpleasant and dangerous side effects in elderly such as dizziness and unsteadiness.
October 20, 2011
By Mike Adams
The admitted goal of the pharmaceutical industry is to have every man, woman and child in America taking at least two prescription medications every day of their lives (whether they’re sick or not). Through Big Pharma’s corruption of the FDA, medical journals, med schools and the mainstream media, it creeps ever closer to accomplishing that goal, and today it has been revealed that one in ten Americans are now on SSRI antidepressant drugs.
This is the conclusion of a survey conducted by the CDC. It also revealed that antidepressant use jumped 400% from 2005 – 2008, while women are 2.5 times more likely to use antidepressants than men.
I could write thousands of words about the dangerous side effects of prolonged antidepressant use (diabetes, psychosis, detachment from reality, etc.), but for this article, I’d rather approach things from a solutions angle and share what I know about getting OFF antidepressant drugs using nutrition and holistic health principles.
How to get off the SSRI meds and save your brain
First, realize that the fictions being sold you by the false advertising of the pharmaceutical industry must be abandoned. Depression is not caused by a “chemical imbalance in the brain” that can be resolved by paying monopoly prices for a patented synthetic chemical sold by a local pharmacy. That’s just a fabrication which was engineered to sell you more overpriced pills.
In reality, “depression” is the red flag warning that multiple areas of your life are out of balance and need to be brought back into balance before you’ll really feel better. After talking with probably hundreds of people about their experiences with so-called “mental disorders” over the past eight years, I’ve come to the conclusion that there are at least four powerful strategies for permanently reversing depression without using any drugs whatsoever. They are:
#1) Spend more time in nature.
Spending time in nature reverses depression at so many levels it’s almost difficult to overstate the benefits. Sunlight exposure beats back depression at the hormonal level. Breathing fresh air that’s filled with negative ions from trees and plants prevents depression at a bioelectric level. Touching the earth with your bare hands, hearing the sounds of nature, feeling the bark of a tree or even just seeing lush green foliage is all vibrational, sensory medicine that also helps reverse diabetes.
If you look at most people who are depressed, they almost all have one thing in common: The LIVE and WORK indoors! They never get out. They never run barefoot in the grass. They are depressed because they are disconnected from the real world. And that’s not what the human body and mind was designed to experience.
#2) Get some regular physical exercise
Did you know that when you exercise, your brain manufactures antidepressant drugs for free? No prescription needed, either. One walk on a treadmill might save you $20 worth of drugs!
Actually, your body’s own brain drugs are better than any synthetic drugs, too. That’s because your biochemistry has no negative side effects. You simply feel good after exercising, and the good feeling may continue for as long as 24 hours.
Your exercise doesn’t have to be crazy to make a world of difference. Just walking 45 minutes a day can have a HUGE impact on your life. Don’t have 45 minutes a day? I bet you do. I bet you watch 45 minutes of TV a day that you could ditch, or you spend 45 minutes a day engaging in pointless activities that don’t contribute to your happiness in any sort of meaningful way. Why not spend those 45 minutes taking a walk instead? You’ll not only feel happier, but your body will get healthier too!
#3) Eat more omega-3 oils and organic plants.
Depression also has a powerful nutritional component. Most “depressed” people are living on processed dead foods. They’re eating way too much sugar, white flour, breads, pasteurized dairy and other depressing foods. No wonder they feel so blue!
To reverse all this, eat more omega-3 oils from dietary supplements, wild-caught salmon, flax seeds, chia seeds and other sources. Boost your mineral intake by consuming (or juicing) lots of fresh organic produce. Make sure it’s organic, because that means it has a higher mineral content. Trace minerals drastically improve cognitive function and moods.
Finally, eat more living foods and less “dead” food. Living foods make you feel alive because they are alive! Dead foods make you feel dead. So get yourself a juicer (the Breville juicers are the best all-around, high-quality juicers), buy some organic carrots, apples, celery and parsley, and start juicing your way to a happier life! (Yes, it really does make you happier.)
#4) Find meaning in your work and in your life.
Many people who are “depressed” also work at a thankless job, or exist in a torturous personal relationship, and they typically live a life with no real purpose or meaning. Having a purpose in life is very inspiring. Pursuing it with daily action can completely reverse any signs of depression and help turn despair into positive, constructive action.
That’s why I say if you feel depressed start searching for your real purpose in life!
I know my purpose. It is to protect the diversity of life on our planet and in our universe. Each day, I diligently work as the editor of NaturalNews toward that fulfilling purpose. This is what allows me to keep moving forward regardless of what happens in the world around me. I know that the universe has granted me the opportunity and the tools to live a life with purpose, in service of what I believe is the most noble cause in the entire universe: The protection of life and truth (against destructive forces, against darkness, against deception, etc.).
I challenge you: What can you find in your own life that is an important purpose serving a higher good? If your work is unfulfilling, can you find a way to transition to a more meaningful line of work that would make you happier? (Yes, it might mean earning less money, but you can’t buy happiness, so it’s priceless!)
Can you find a way to work in the service of others so that the people around you experience an improvement in their own lives? Can you teach others? Can you lead by example? Can you write inspiring books?
This may take some soul searching, but you may find solutions through meditation or yoga or even just taking long hikes in nature and thinking about your life for a change. I’ve never seen a purpose-driven person feeling depressed for very long. Once you find a driving purpose in your life, you’ll be so busy pursuing that mission that you won’t even have time to feel depressed!
Or you could just take SSRI drugs and fake like you’re happy
Now, if you really can’t stand going outside in the sunshine, and you absolutely love to eat donuts for breakfast and pizza for dinner, and you have no purpose in your life other than to inhale more snack chips in front of the TV set, then SSRI drugs may be the perfect thing. With one little pill, you can temporarily alter your brain chemistry to add illusion to insult, making you “feel” like your life is okay even though you know in your heart that it isn’t.
Getting off SSRI drugs requires courage. Taking responsibility for your life may be the hardest thing you’ve ever done, but it might also be the most rewarding. Subsisting on mind-altering drugs while living a life of despair is no life at all. And the longer you take these SSRI drugs, the more detached you will feel, making you even more isolated and depressed.
That’s why I say get off your meds NOW! Turn off the TV and take your life back! Get off the couch, out of the pharmacy and away from your toxic doctor with his deadly prescription pad that probably has a Pfizer logo on it. Get out into nature, eat real foods, get into regular exercise and find a meaningful purpose in your life. This will get you back on track to not just happiness, but spiritual fulfillment as well.
October 11th, 2011
By: Madeline Vann, MPH
You’ve started treating your depression with antidepressants, only to find that you’re still wrestling with a number of annoying side effects or tricky-to-treat symptoms.
One in every 10 people in the United States is on some form of antidepressant, with depressant drugs getting prescribed to middle-aged Americans more than any other medication, according to a recent National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. But each antidepressant-popping adult reacts individually to the drug — its side effects, strength, and efficacy may be drastically different in you than in someone else.
“Some people are exquisitely sensitive to antidepressant side effects,” says psychiatrist Heidi Combs, MD, assistant professor of psychiatry at the University of Washington in Seattle. Others can take just about any medication without running into any problems.
The good news: If you are encountering problems, most of them can be easily managed or reversed. Here are the most common nuisances of antidepressants — and how to solve them.
Problem 1: “I’m still sad.” Of all antidepressant problems, this may be the thorniest to untangle: You still feel blue. In fact, there are a number of possible reasons you’re continuing to experience depression symptoms despite taking an antidepressant:
- You got the wrong diagnosis. “When someone has depression that doesn’t respond to treatment, the first thing you do is step back and make sure you have the right diagnosis,” says Combs. Your psychiatrist might want to do more tests to make sure some important clues weren’t missed the first time around.
- Your medication hasn’t kicked in yet. Sometimes it takes time for antidepressants to become effective. Check with your doctor to find out if you need to wait a bit longer.
- You’re boozing or using drugs. These substances can interfere with your depression treatment — you’ll need to quit if you want complete success.
- You’re not in therapy. It would be nice if medication could solve all depression problems, but you might also need to talk to a therapist to help you figure out how to cope with some of the issues in your life that are legitimately causing you to feel sad or anxious.
- You’re taking the wrong medication. Many people can find relief by switching antidepressants or adding another medication, such as a thyroid drug or lithium.
Problem 2: “I’m not sad — but I’m not happy, either.” Some people who take selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) experience emotional blunting — a feeling of being depleted of all emotions (including the good ones). But you don’t have to lose your ability to feel joy just to get rid of the pain: Emotional blunting is best resolved by switching to a different class of antidepressants, adding a second medication, or talking to a therapist, says Combs.
Problem 3: “My antidepressant is making me fat.” As many as 25 percent of people taking an antidepressant will see its effect on the scale. While weight gain is a side effect of some depression medications, it’s not a side effect of all — and most people who gain weight because of their depression drugs will only gain five to 10 pounds.
If you have a history of being overweight, you’re more likely to gain while on an antidepressant — “so choose an antidepressant that is weight neutral,” advises Combs. If that’s not an option, she emphasizes getting counseled in diet and exercise. (An added bonus? Both fitness and good-for-you foods have been shown to help ease depression, too).
Problem 4: “Sex tonight? No way!” Many people struggling with depression lose interest in sexual activity — but some antidepressants actually make it difficult to respond sexually. In fact, about 70 percent of people taking certain antidepressants complain of negative sexual side effects. But doctors don’t always warn their patients about this effect, says Dr. Combs, and it can be very frustrating.
Some people are willing to accept it as a temporary trade-off for successful depression treatment — but most people want solutions. Consider switching antidepressants, trying a different dosing schedule, taking other medications to improve sexual response, or experimenting with new ways to increase arousal.
Problem 5: “I’m up all night.” Sleep problems often go hand in hand with depression. And when you can’t get a good night’s sleep, it can make it even harder to treat depression effectively. “Some antidepressants are identified as activating and some are sedating,” explains Combs. Finding the right match for you is key — a sedating antidepressant might be a good bet for someone who is having problems with sleep. It’s also important to look at other lifestyle choices that might be affecting your sleep, like your environment, physical activity (or the lack of it), drinking caffeine late in the day, and alcohol use.
Problem 6: “I want to stop taking my meds — but I’m afraid my depression will come back.” Once you start feeling better, you’ll probably want to quit taking antidepressants — but, naturally, you may worry that your depression symptoms will return or that you’ll experience withdrawal symptoms. Although antidepressants are only temporary for most people, you should never stop taking them (or any prescription medication) without the guidance of a doctor. Usually, the best approach is to reduce the dosage very gradually — stopping “cold turkey” could result in unwanted side effects.
Problem 7: “I want to die.” With depression, there’s always a risk of suicidal thoughts. In fact, having them is actually a rare antidepressant side effect — people taking antidepressants to ease depression may be surprised to find that they are continuing or even beginning to feel suicidal. Call your doctor immediately if you start to experience worsening depression symptoms that include suicidal thoughts.
If you’re running into a problem with your antidepressants, there’s a likely solution — so don’t ignore it. Get to the bottom of it.
October 25th, 2010
By: Gene Marical
Fighting depression, a highly prevalent and serious mood disorder that affects about 18.1 million adults in the U.S. is one of the largest markets in the pharmaceutical industry — and it’s still growing. More than 212 million antidepressant prescriptions were written last year, with 2009 antidepressant therapy sales totaling about $12 billion.
The major players in this market are the larger drugmakers, including Pfizer (PFE, through its recent purchase of Wyeth), Eli Lilly (LLY), Forest Laboratories (FRX), GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and Merck (MRK, through its acquisition of Schering-Plough).
To this impressive list of Big Pharma companies, add the name of a tiny and little-known biotech, Clinical Data (CLDA). Why? The young company has developed a potential blockbuster antidepressant called Vilazodone, which analysts expect will be approved by the Food and Drug Administration for marketing early next year.
Because of Vilazodone, the buzz is Clinical Data has become an attractive takeover target for any one of the major players in the field. Vilazodone, if approved by the FDA, will be the first new entry into the antidepressant market in more than 15 years. Its importance is enhanced by the fact that several of the existing therapies are due to lose their patent protection before long. The three drugmakers likely to be interested — and said to have had some talks with several Clinical Data executives — are Eli Lily, Forest Labs and Pfizer.
No Impact on Sexual Function
What’s so special about Vilazodone when compared with the rest of the crowd? One major difference: Unlike its rivals, Vilazodone doesn’t suppress or affect a patient’s sexual function. That is a very important difference, indeed, according to industry analysts.
“Patients with depression usually experience difficulties with sexual functioning, which tends to be worsened by antidepressant treatments,” notes Chrystyna Bedrij, biotech analyst at Griffin Securities. Vilazodone, she says, is “neutral” on that particular issue, because it doesn’t harm a patient’s sexual ability. It neither enhances nor suppresses sexual functions, she explains.
Dr. Carol Reed, chief medical officer of Clinical Data, confirms that Vilazodone has a dual mechanism of action, which combines “selective serotonin reuptake inhibition” and “partial 5-HT receptor agonist” to reduce the impact on sexual function as measured by validated scales. Study findings corroborate, she says, that “there was no impairment of sexual function.”
The serotonin inhibitors, which enhance the availability of synaptic serotonin — a key brain chemical — are approved as safe and effective treatment for depression, says Reed. And the 5-HT receptor agonists have also been shown to be effective for treating mood disorders, including depression and anxiety, she adds.
Significantly Upbeat Results
Given the potential worth of Vilazodone’s lack of effect on sexual functioning, “it is positively differentiated from other antidepressants in the market,” says Griffin’s Bedrij. So, she rates Clinical Data’s stock a buy based alone on the appeal and potential value of Viladozone. She puts the intrinsic worth of Clinical Data, currently trading at $18 a share, at $33 a share.
Although no one can predict what the FDA will do, the betting is that Vilazodone, in all likelihood, will win approval because it has completed all the required clinical trials with significantly upbeat results on efficacy and safety, argues Bedrij. And Clinical Data’s new-drug application for Viladozone is supported by data from nearly 3,000 patients who “received the drug safely with a low occurrence of side effects,” notes the analyst.
All the other seven Wall Street analysts who track Clinical Data also rate the stock a buy, including those from Piper Jaffray, Roth Capital Partners and BMO capital Markets.
January 27th, 2010
WebMD Health News
By Salynn Boyles
Early research suggests a link between antidepressant use and breastfeeding difficulties in new moms.
The risk of delayed lactation after giving birth was twice as great among women in the study taking selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressants as among new mothers who did not take the drugs.
Just eight, or about 2%, of the 431 study participants were taking the antidepressants, however, so the findings are far from conclusive.
But the study is the first to explore the impact of antidepressant use on lactation in humans.
“Delayed lactation is very common in the United States, but we don’t really understand the reasons for it,” researcher Nelson D. Horseman, PhD, of the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine tells WebMD. “This may end up being one of the few concrete explanations for at least some of the delayed lactation we see.
“Earlier research in Nelson’s lab found that the hormone serotonin plays a role in breast function, including the ability to secrete milk when needed.
The finding led the researchers to wonder if drugs that affect serotonin levels, such as SSRI antidepressants, would also affect the ability of the breasts to secrete milk when needed.
SSRIs are the most widely prescribed antidepressants. They include the drugs Zoloft, Celexa, Prozac, Paxil, and Lexapro.
In an effort to answer the question, Nelson and colleagues followed 431 first-time mothers from childbirth through the first days of motherhood.
For the purposes of the study, the researchers considered breastfeeding delayed when a woman did not have copious milk production within three days, or 72 hours, of giving birth.
All the women in the study were eventually able to breastfeed, whether they were taking antidepressants or not.
But the average time to lactation for the eight women taking SSRIs was almost 86 hours after childbirth, which was almost a day later than the average time it took women who did not take the antidepressants to establish a milk supply.
Lactation specialist Laurie Nommsen-Rivers, PhD, tells WebMD that this extra day can be the difference between success or failure for women anxious to provide their babies nutrition.
A co-author of the study, Nommsen-Rivers is also an epidemiologist with Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. “That delay can be the point where many women throwing in the towel and decide they can’t breastfeed,” she says. “It is important to point out that all the women in our study eventually lactated. SSRI use doesn’t prevent women from breastfeeding, but it might take SSRI users a little longer.
“Nommsen-Rivers says that while all new moms should have access to breastfeeding support, such support may be especially important for new moms who take antidepressants.
The study appears in the February issue of the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism.
“These women need to know that delay doesn’t mean it isn’t going to happen,” she says.
Texas Tech University Medical School health psychologist and lactation consultant Kathleen Kendall-Tackett, PhD, points to numerous studies that have explored the impact of SSRIs on babies born to women who use them.
“To my knowledge this lactation delay has not been documented before,” she tells WebMD. “I would guess that if this is happening, it is rare.”
She points out that pregnant women are at the highest risk for depression in their last trimester and in the early weeks after giving birth.
While she feels too many women may be taking antidepressants when other treatments might work for them, Kendall-Tackett also warns that moms-to-be and new moms should never stop taking SSRIs or any other prescribed antidepressant without their doctor’s approval.
“Generally speaking, if a woman is on an antidepressant during the last trimester of pregnancy she probably needs to stay on it, and she should never go off it on her own,” she says.
August 26, 2009
By David Gutierrez
The antidepressant Celexa, commonly prescribed to alleviate some symptoms of autism in children, has no medical benefit in such patients, while exposing them to a significant risk of side effects.
Researchers treated 149 autistic children between the ages of five and 17 with either Celexa (generic name citalopram) or a placebo for 12 weeks. While one third of the patients who took Celexa showed improvement in symptoms over the study period, just as many patients showed improvement on the placebo. Children who took Celexa were twice as likely to suffer from side effects, including insomnia and impulsiveness, as children who took a placebo.
Lead researcher Bryan King noted that doctors prescribing drugs for “off-label” uses not approved by the FDA — often uses for which few studies of effectiveness or safety have been done — may think the treatment is actually working because of strong placebo effects like that seen in this study.
Celexa is an antidepressant in the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) class. Because many SSRIs have shown some effectiveness in treating the symptoms of obsessive compulsive disorder in adults, growing numbers of pediatricians are turning to the drugs to treat obsessive, repetitive behaviors in autistic children. Many autistic children are prone to carry out repetitive behaviors like counting or arm flapping almost uncontrollably, often flying into a tantrum if interrupted.
The only drug approved by the FDA to treat irritability and aggression in autistic children is the atypical antipsychotic risperidone. Federal law allows doctors to prescribe drugs for any use they wish, however.
Treatment of obsessive symptoms in autistic children with Celexa or other SSRIs has been premised on the untested assumption that such symptoms stem from similar neurological pathways as those of adult obsessive compulsive disorder. The new study has cast serious doubt onto that hypothesis.