Pharmacists are sometimes bothered by the emphasis placed on natural remedies for conditions like depression and anxiety. They point out that gold standard pharmaceuticals are FDA approved where many supplements, minerals, and alternative treatments are not.

Suzy Cohen, a seasoned pharmacist and syndictated columnist, cautions one disgruntled collegue to become better educated across the board. She reminds her that one of the primary causes of depression, reduced levels of folic acid, is not improved with pharmaceutical gold standards. She points out that depression is often caused by vitamin deficiencies, like low vitamin C or reduced B12.  Having a low thyroid hormone is also a depression-causing culprit. Gold standards are no help there either.

Suzy adamantly stands behind natural solutions, suggesting several remedies below, “outside the pill:”

Are you suffering from depression, and need a boost of feel-good hormones? Suzy recommends that, instead of drugs, you start with supplements like magnesium, vitamin C, B6, folic acid and 5-HTP. All of these substances work together to increase production of mood-lifting hormones like GABA, serotonin, norepinephrine and dopamine. There is no page-long list of side effects here, when taken in natural doses. The only ill effects might be a bit of minor digestive upset.

Side effects are often the misery of gold standard antidepressants. Users can find themselves suffering a whole host of new maladies when they take the supposed antidote to their depression. Antidepressant users often endure anxiety, vision trouble, spotted skin, swollen breasts, cramping, nausea, disorientation, sexual dysfunction, abnormal bleeding, headaches, confusion, coma, and much more. All of this, because you want to relieve your depression, and the FDA says drugs are the way to go!

If feeling better is the actual goal, drugs seem to have missed the mark considerably. Physicians and pharmacists must educate themselves, and their clientele. It seems that natural solutions are the better starting place, and course of action for our bodies and minds.