Sunday, December 12, 2010

Niacin + Organics = No Depression?

Niacin from Amazon.com
Back in the 1950's three of my mother's younger sisters worked in a psychiatric hospital. The older of the three, my Aunt Pat, was a registered psychiatric nurse (R.P.N)and worked with Dr. Abram Hoffer. At the epoch of mental health "management" with pharmaceutical drugs, this famous (or infamous?)maverick psychiatrist believed, along with others like Dr. Linus Pauling ("the Vitamin C doctor")that mental illness was basically "an inborn error of metabolism."

Dr. Hoffer promoted the massive use of Vitamin B3 (Niacin) as relief for some forms of mental illness such as depression. Tryptophan (an amino acid found in dark turkey meat and nuts) was also one of Dr. Hoffer's favourite "medications".

Andrew Saul, Ph.D., worked with Dr. Hoffer in his later years (he died in 2009). Go here to listen an interview by Dr. Mercola of Dr. Saul talking about how organic food and vitamins, like Niacin, can be startlingly effective in dealing with depression today. It is certainly clear to me that I feel better when I eat good quality, nutritious fruits and veggies. I haven't tried Niacin for a long time (I DO remember that "niacin flush" though) but if we have a dark and dingy winter I just might give it another go.


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