Are current treatments or medications not working for you or your patients? Are you sick of managing symptoms and not treating root causes?
It’s time we address the ineffective treatment model for mental health, not just skyrocketing rates of mental illness.
Modern psychiatry is often considered the only solution for our current mental health crisis. However, conventional psychiatry relies heavily on prescribing medications for symptoms, and outcomes for patient recovery are poor. Worse yet, medication side effects can be debilitating, and there are no approved medications for many mental health disorders. It’s clear that more prescriptions are not the answer.
We are facing an unprecedented crisis of mental illness. A new treatment approach is necessary.
There’s a better way to do mental health care.
Over the last decade, scientific research has clearly established a relationship between malnutrition and brain function across every major psychiatric illness, from depression, ADHD, and schizophrenia, to eating disorders, anxiety, and dementia. Evidence confirms clear associations between nutritional imbalances in the body, and the prevalence and severity of mental illness and symptoms.
Traditional psychiatry treatment for mental illness, however, fails to recognize and address nutritional imbalances as factors in mental illness.
A recent published review outlines the current situation on the growing use of psychotropic medications and their lack of curative effects: We know that these drugs influence certain brain chemicals and alter gene expression and protein synthesis. However, these biological effects do not translate into lasting positive psychological effects. Symptoms tend to return when medications are stopped, and recur even as patients continue to take complex regimens of antidepressants, antipsychotics, mood stabilizers, anxiolytics, and the like (Ivanov 2021).
The data on antidepressants is a damning case in point. While the authors of the largest meta-analysis on antidepressant efficacy state that they are more effective than placebo, they neglect to directly mention their effect size.
In an unpublished, online-only appendix of the analysis, buried on page 142, the efficacy of antidepressants works out to be so small as to be clinically meaningless (Cipriani 2018, Munkholm 2019).
Is it any wonder that huge percentages of patients do not seek standard mental health treatment?
The inadequacies of the conventional psychiatry ultimately inspired me to pursue a more comprehensive paradigm–one that not only acknowledges the role of biology in mental illness, but recognizes the importance of genetics, nutrition, trauma, lifestyle, and spirituality.
This search led me to functional psychiatry, an integrated approach to mental health that honors the delicate connections and balance between brain, body, and psyche. Medications can be part of functional psychiatry protocols, but rarely are the sole treatment modality.
Functional psychiatry has the potential to revolutionize mental health care, transform psychiatry into a truly personalized medicine, and finally deliver lasting wellness to our patients.
This model provides hope for recovery for patients like nothing else has before.
Through laboratory testing and analysis, we can now identify the underlying causes of mental illness, including inflammation, nutritional deficiencies, hormonal dysregulation, infections, toxicities, and genetic differences. These objective measurements provide valid, scientific treatment that has been neglected in past approaches.
By recognizing and treating each person’s unique internal imbalances and biochemistry, outcomes can be dramatically improved.
Join me for an important webinar on July 14 where I discuss functional solutions to our mental health crisis, and the necessity in addressing the interconnections between mind and body.
Please invite your colleagues, friends, family, and anyone who might help us affect change in our mental health care system.
World Health Organization. Mental Disorders. Published June 8, 2022. Accessed June 9, 2022. https://www.who.int/news-room/
Kessler RC, Aguilar-Gaxiola S, Alonso J, et al. The global burden of mental disorders: an update from the WHO World Mental Health (WMH) surveys. Epidemiol Psichiatr Soc. 2009;18(1):23-33. doi:10.1017/s1121189x00001421
GBD 2017 Causes of Death Collaborators. Global, regional, and national age-sex-specific mortality for 282 causes of death in 195 countries and territories, 1980-2017: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2017 [published correction appears in Lancet. 2019 Jun 22;393(10190):e44] [published correction appears in Lancet. 2018 Nov 17;392(10160):2170]. Lancet. 2018;392(10159):1736-1788. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(18)
The Lancet Global Health. Mental health matters. Lancet Glob Health. 2020;8(11):e1352. doi:10.1016/S2214-109X(20)
Kessler RC, Angermeyer M, Anthony JC, et al. Lifetime prevalence and age-of-onset distributions of mental disorders in the World Health Organization’s World Mental Health Survey Initiative. World Psychiatry. 2007;6(3):168-176.
Bose J, Hedden SL, Lipari RN,Park-Lee E, Porter JD, Pemberton MR. Key substance use and mental health indicators in the United States: Results from the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health. Rockville, MD: Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. 2016.
Vahratian A, Blumberg SJ, Terlizzi EP, Schiller JS. Symptoms of Anxiety or Depressive Disorder and Use of Mental Health Care Among Adults During the COVID-19 Pandemic – United States, August 2020-February 2021. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2021;70(13):490-494. Published 2021 Apr 2. doi:10.15585/mmwr.mm7013e2
Price JH, Khubchandani J. Childhood Suicide Trends in the United States, 2010-2019. J Community Health. 2022;47(2):232-236. doi:10.1007/s10900-021-01040-w
Garnett MF, Curtin SC, Stone DM. Suicide Mortality in the United States, 2000-2020. NCHS Data Brief. 2022;(433):1-8.
Kessler RC, Berglund P, Demler O, Jin R, Merikangas KR, Walters EE. Lifetime prevalence and age-of-onset distributions of DSM-IV disorders in the National Comorbidity Survey Replication [published correction appears in Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2005 Jul;62(7):768. Merikangas, Kathleen R ]. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2005;62(6):593-602. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.62.6.593
Wang PS, Berglund PA, Olfson M, Kessler RC. Delays in initial treatment contact after first onset of a mental disorder. Health Serv Res. 2004;39(2):393-415. doi:10.1111/j.1475-6773.2004.
Ivanov I, Schwartz JM. Why Psychotropic Drugs Don’t Cure Mental Illness-But Should They? Front Psychiatry. 2021;12:579566. Published 2021 Apr 6. doi:10.3389/fpsyt.2021.579566
Cipriani A, Furukawa TA, Salanti G, et al. Comparative Efficacy and Acceptability of 21 Antidepressant Drugs for the Acute Treatment of Adults With Major Depressive Disorder: A Systematic Review and Network Meta-Analysis. Focus (Am Psychiatr Publ). 2018;16(4):420-429. doi:10.1176/appi.focus.16407
Munkholm K, Paludan-Müller AS, Boesen K. Considering the methodological limitations in the evidence base of antidepressants for depression: a reanalysis of a network meta-analysis. BMJ Open. 2019;9(6):e024886. Published 2019 Jun 27. doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2018-