Saturday, July 23, 2016

Quotes from "Finding the Right Psychiatrist"

Here are some quotes from Finding the Right Psychiatrist, by Robert L. Taylor...

For mild to moderate depression -- the most common target of antidepressant medication -- they are no better than placebo (Fournier et al. 2010).

And even these meager results may be overstated.  When studies fail to show any advantage over placebo or when adverse effects prove too troublesome, no problem -- psychodrug makers simply throw out the results and start over.  There are no restrictions on how many studies can be done.  A pharmaceutical company can keep at it until approvable results turn up.  These outcomes -- no matter how difficult to come by -- can then be trumpeted as the only outcomes.  (The FDA does now require all drug studies to at least be publicly registered on a website: www.clinicaltrials.gov.)

You might reasonably ask, Why then do antidepressants remain so popular?  One major factor relates to the
tremendous influence psychodrug makers exert over psychiatric publications.  In some instances these companies arrange to have supportive articles ghostwritten!  Another factor stems from selective publication.  In a review of 74 antidepressant studies, researchers found 37 of 38 positive outcomes published in professional journals.  In contrast, only 3 of 36 negative outcomes made it into print (Turner et al. 2008).  In a few instances, failed results were buried in the report and replaced by a positive but unrelated finding.  This long-standing practice carries the nickname "data torturing" (Watters 2010). - page 48

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... magnesium, commonly deficient in the American diet and susceptible to depletion by stress, seems to
counteract depression.  One report documented depressed persons recovering after taking extra magnesium (125-300 mg) with each meal and at bedtime.  When put to the test, magnesium also exerts a mood-stabilizing effect, which may be related to chemical characteristics shared with lithium (Eby 2006).  - page 89

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Stanford psychiatry Professor Lorrin Koran and his research team studied the addition of a stimulant drug to
the treatment regimen of persons with severe obsessive-compulsive symptoms.  While continuing their previously prescribed SSRI, the patients took, in addition, one of two stimulants: dextroamphetamine or caffeine.  The researchers were surprised when caffeine (used as the control) produced improvement equal to that achieved with dextroamphetamine.  In addition, caffeine was associated with an unexpected reduction in anxiety (Koran et al. 2009).

Further evidence of caffeine's therapeutic value comes from the study of fifty thousand women.  Those who
drank two to three cups of coffee a day were 15% less likely to require treatment for depression over a ten-
year follow-up period (Lucas et al. 2011).  The results suggest that increasing one's consumption of caffeine
might help stave off depression in persons so predisposed. - pages 91-92

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Wednesday Weigh-In 20160720

I never weighed so much in my life! It may be that the GABA and/or Tryptophan also cause weight gain, perhaps indirectly. I plan to make an appointment with a Naturopathic Doctor soon. Here's a link to an interesting article on GABA. I found it interesting that GABA should not cross the Blood-Brain Barrier. But, GABA makes me tired, which may indicate that I have a "Leaky Brain".

Waist = 43.0"
Height = 5' 9"

References:
  1. Wikipedia BMI page
  2. Tanita Scale with Body Fat monitor
  3. Javascript must be enabled to view the data.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Dream: Interview With Nessbaum

I'm accompanying my wife, who has a job interview.  We're in the building.  I'm in a hallway at a make-shift wire gate.  My wife has gone on ahead of me.  There is another visitor there – a male.  A female employee of the company is at the gate letting people through.  The visitor speaks with the employee and gets her to slide the gate open part way.  While they're still talking, I slip through, saying, “I know the way.”

I walk down the hallway, looking into rooms, because I really don't know the way.  I figure I'd just find which room my wife is in and enter that room.  After looking in a few doorways, I find her.

I enter the room.  It's more like a sitting room than an office.  The walls are paneled with wood.  The company president is there.  I'll call him “Nessbaum” -- that's what he looks like, a “Nessbaum”.  He's an older white man, with wire-rimmed glasses, short, thick, curly, gun-barrel gray hair, and a professional yet kind and patient disposition.  He's sitting in an overstuffed chair sorting through paperwork that's in his lap.  I remain quiet, trying to not disrupt anything.

Eventually, he's finished with my wife and now it's my turn.  But he has yet more paperwork to shuffle through.  So I get up and ask him if he'd like anything from the cafeteria, a cup of tea perhaps.  He says that he'd like tea, and tells me a particular brand and flavor.

In the cafeteria, I open the cabinet containing the teas.  I don't see the one he mentioned.  I wonder if this is a test.  Perhaps he wants to know how I'll react in an impossible situation.  I ask the other folks who are there, “Do we have blank tea?”  They chuckle and one says, “Oh that's for Nessbaum, right?  He really means blah blah tea.”

Relieved, I select the blah blah tea.  Yet I take one final glance for the tea that Nessbaum asked for.  As I walk back I think about what I'd say if he complains about the incorrect tea selection.  The response comes to me quickly.  I'll say that I decided to trust the advice of the other employees.  If they're honest, you'll get the right tea and all will be well.  But if they're sneaky and try to trick me, then you won't hire me which is just as well since I wouldn't want to work among sneaky dishonest people.  It's the perfect answer, and I'm very pleased with myself.

I return to the room, but Nessbaum isn't there.  Instead a few other people are using the room.  I'm concerned that I took too long and lost my opportunity to interview with him.  I walk further down the hallway hoping to find him, and I find my wife sitting in another room.  “Where's Nessbaum?” I ask.  “He's dead,” is the reply.  I'm shocked and upset.  I explain how I thought of a great reply to why I didn't bring the tea that he asked for.  Then I start to cry.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Wednesday Weigh-In 20160630

I'm making another effort to get the new CPAP machine. The machine I have now is fixed at a pressure of "9". But I weigh more than I did when I had the sleep study, and the machine is old and might not be working correctly. The new machine would be capable of auto-titration, an APAP.

Waist = 42.75"
Height = 5' 9"

References:
  1. Wikipedia BMI page
  2. Tanita Scale with Body Fat monitor
  3. Javascript must be enabled to view the data.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Wednesday Weigh-In 20160622

I've started taking two new supplements: GABA Calm and L-Tryptophan. I have absolutely no anxiety, and I'm not anymore depressed than before. The dull apathy I was experiencing is all gone. The range of motion in my shoulder is so much better, but I still have some pain.

Waist = 42.75"
Height = 5' 9"

References:
  1. Wikipedia BMI page
  2. Tanita Scale with Body Fat monitor
  3. Javascript must be enabled to view the data.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Wednesday Weigh-In 20160615

I decided to stop taking Lexapro. Instead, I'll follow the guidelines in Trudy Scott's "The anti-anxiety food solution : how the foods you eat can help you calm your anxious mind, improve your mood, & end cravings." Ever since I started Lexapro I had pains in my right shoulder and elbow, very low motivation, tiredness and apathy, and weight gain. The pains remind me of what I experienced when I ate corn, so it might be due to the fillers in the pill. Anyway I expect the tiredness and pains to be gone within seven days, which is about how long it took for me to improve under the Blood Type Diet.

Waist = 42.5"
Height = 5' 9"

References:
  1. Wikipedia BMI page
  2. Tanita Scale with Body Fat monitor
  3. Javascript must be enabled to view the data.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Wednesday Weigh-In 20160608

The numbers are the same as last week's. Our dishwasher has been broken for a couple of weeks. My routine used to be that I'd load the dishwasher and turn it on before going to bed. And to motivate myself to do that, I'd eat a snack while loading it. But it's harder to eat a snack while washing dishes, so I may be eliminating some extra calories.

Waist = 42.25"
Height = 5' 9"

References:
  1. Wikipedia BMI page
  2. Tanita Scale with Body Fat monitor
  3. Javascript must be enabled to view the data.