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Orthomolecular Treatment for Schizophrenia Spiral-bound – April 11, 1999
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Fortunately there are physicians like Dr. Hoffer who still look to the patient, and not the test tube, for their answers. A patient's therapeutic response is the highest of all guiding principles in medicine. If it works, do it.
"Pellagra" is the classic niacin deficiency disease. It was once common in the rural South where the poor had little else to eat except tryptophan-poor foods like milled corn. The symptoms are the "Three D's": diarrhea, dermatitis, and dementia. More specific pellagra symptoms include weakness, anorexia, lassitude, indigestion, skin eruptions, skin scaling, neuritis, nervous system destruction, confusion, apathy, disorientation, and insanity.
Does this sound a bit like schizophrenia?
A few physicians thought so, too. In studying mental illness, tryptophan and niacin deficits, and pellagra, some doctors noticed that psychotics and other mentally ill persons frequently have assorted pellagra-like symptoms in addition to their nervous problems. From about 1900 to the mid 1930's, perhaps up to half of persons in psychiatric hospitals had pellagra. It makes one wonder: could many forms of mental illness actually be caused by a deficiency of niacin?
In the 1950's, an insightful young psychiatrist named Abram Hoffer began clinical trials to find out. He used very high doses of niacin, with very good results. But the success, convenience and relentless advertising of later (c. 1960) "wonder drugs" diminished niacin's popularity.Read more ›
The primary orthomolecular approach to schizophrenia is niacin or niacinamide (vitamin B3) in > 2 g/d doeses. In double-blind trials, 3 grams of niacin daily resulted in a doubling in recovery rate and a 50% reduction in hospitalization. Later double-blind trials did not reproduce the positive results, but Hoffer contends these trials were poorly designed. Subsequent research has been too meager to quote.
There are several complexities to niacin therapy. It must be at least 3,000 mg per day in divided doses. It must not be "time release" forms made by pharmaceutical companies that are dangerous and the root cause of the irrational fears of niacin. There are several forms of niacin. Make sure you follow Dr. Hoffer's guidelines. It's most effective if the patient's schizophrenia is a fairly recent development. Ignoring these issues is probably why some studies are negative.
Please keep in mind there are websites dedicated to trashing megavitamin therapy. They modify other's writings from 1998, change the wording a little, and pretend it's their own recent writing. They then copy and paste the same negative plagerism under several of Hoffer's books. On their web site they reference journal articles "disproving" megavitamin therapy but when you take a closer look at the journal articles, they are often not related to the issue at hand.Read more ›
Several recent research projects have also shown that the gene coding for the enzyme glutathione transferase, an enzyme that metabolizes adrenochrome, is defective in many acute schizophrneics.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a pamphlet, not a book. No studies listed for their proof of curing mental illness via vitamins.Published 5 months ago by LAURA POGLIANO
This is a readable and short book about a potential curative treatment for schizophrenia. The good doctor had to go to Canada to proceed with research. Read morePublished 6 months ago by GeorgiaWilliams
It's a good book, I have to read it more thoroughly to be able to tell if I can implement it at homePublished 6 months ago by Mercy C.
It is basically the same info in his other books put into this small bookletPublished 6 months ago by Leslie K. Gray
This is a very useful book. It gives general information about schizophrenia and specific nutritional deficiencies or excesses, and offers very detailed treatment plans. Read morePublished 7 months ago by ECS
Excellent book! Easy to read and understand. A. Hoffer makes a good case.Published 8 months ago by ginaprays
The information is ground breaking news for people who might suffer from paranoia. Well worth reading. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Anita Parkinson