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How to Use Herbs, Nutrients, and Yoga in Mental Health Care 1st Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 28 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0393705256
ISBN-10: 0393705250
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Editorial Reviews


“This book is for everyone…an invaluable resource for practitioners and consumers alike.” (Townsend Letter)

“[T]his book offers credible information about almost every widely available over-the-counter herb or nutrient….outstanding compilation of research and superb way in which the research is woven into a narrative….as exhaustive and reliable a source for these CAM therapies as one will find on the shelf today.” (Yoga Therapy Today)

“[A]n excellent reference...that will appeal to CAM consumers and practitioners as well as conventional physicians. All will find a thoughtful review of practical guidelines for the application of CAM treatments for neurology and psychiatry. I give it a thumbs up!” (HerbalGram Magazine)

“[I]nvaluable for practicing physicians and those in the mental health industry.” (Midwest Book Review)

“A go-to source for information on integrative mental health.” (Mehmet C. Oz, MD, FACS)

“Brown, Gerbarg, and Muskin have distilled an otherwise daunting field of treatment down to its basics: their overriding approach is to present the CAM methods that are most practical in a clinical setting, easy to administer, and low in side effects.” (Current Psychiatry Online)

“[A] powerful book...has the potential to blow a gaping hole in the current wall of psychiatric ignorance of natural therapies.” (Chris Kilham, Medicine Hunter)

“[R]eadable by healthcare consumers...highly useful to mental health professionals....be they MD psychiatrist, PhD psychologist, CSW or LMHC psychotherapist.” (Stephen Larsen, PhD, LMHC, BCIA-eeg)

“[T]he best book on this difficult topic that I have come across.” (Journal of Mental Health)

About the Author

Richard P. Brown, MD, is an associate clinical professor of psychiatry at Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons. He lives in Kingston, New York.

Patricia L. Gerbarg, MD, is an assistant clinical professor of psychiatry at New York Medical College. She lives in Kingston, New York.

Philip R. Muskin, MD, is a professor of clinical psychiatry at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, and chief of consultation-liaison psychiatry at New York–Presbyterian Hospital. He lives in New York City.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 464 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; 1 edition (January 5, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393705250
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393705256
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 1.3 x 9.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.7 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #872,079 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Stephen Larsen on January 4, 2009
Format: Hardcover
For those who hover between the worldviews of the Western medical establishment and the holistic model, this book offers a balanced and informative guide. Dr.'s Brown, Gerbarg, and Muskin have elite credentials, and offer excellent academic scholarship along with genuine empathy for people suffering with illnesses and traumas. This book is readable by healthcare consumers and is highly useful to mental health professionals as well.
This book is very even-handed in dealing with traditional (prescription) psychopharmacology, herbal remedies, and mind-body approaches--and their interactions. For this reason, it is the best guide on the market for people who have tried multiple approaches to life-endangering, or life-quality compromising problems. The authors intelligently and respectfully analyze self-help approaches such as yoga, Qi Gong, or breathing exercises. Though they agree with modern medicine that the peer-reviewed, placebo controlled study is important in assessing the efficacy of any treatment, traditional or holistic, they also note the limitations of this approach. Side effects, risks, and benefits of all treatments are discussed as well as how to tailor remedies for different constitutions. This includes how prescription medications may contraindicate certain herbal remedies, or even certain yoga practices. Another invaluable feature of this book is that it provides guidelines that help locate reliable quality products.
This book is a must for laymen and professionals who are open to a wide variety of approaches, use them, or share patients with other doctors or healers who use them. In a complex living nervous system, how might these interventions interact, amplifying (or detracting) from each others' effects?
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Format: Hardcover
This book is the reference I have been waiting for. Though many websites and health advocates promote nutritional supplements, I am aware that they are regulated by the FDA in a different manner than prescriptions and other over-the-counter medications. Like other consumers, I am forced to frequently buy without a sense of confidence. This is the first and only guide I have found that identifies manufacturers - and not in any way that benefits the authors. Though the book was filled with much valuable information, it is worth its purchase price just for the Appendix and Guide to Buying Quality Products.

Further, there is ample empirical evidence to support yoga's myriad health benefits. I frequently recommend the practice of yoga to my clients and they invariably find improvement of both their physical and mental status.

This book is a perfect reference point. Lay people and mental health practitioners alike, who respect the value of both Western and Eastern modalities and want to reap ALL of the benefits of the knowledge that is available to help themselves or their clients will find this an invaluable addition to their bookshelf.
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Format: Hardcover
This book is encyclopedic! It covers most areas concerning adults who take charge of their own health. The authors speak with authority, backing up their information with 60 pages of references and case studies experienced in their practices. I finally could understand what the herbs can do, where to purchase the best brands,and the safest way to use them.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
An excellent book on evidence-based CAM treatments that serves to provide an educational foundation for both the patient and the mental health provider. The book's target audience is mental health professionals seeking that foundation for CAM treatment. Its value to laymen like me is that it really helps in showing clinical trial and clinical practice support for CAM treatments so that I can make more informed decisions, partnering with a mental health professional when various agents are used for treatment (therefore, it isn't meant to serve as a completely self-driven self-help book). On the other hand, the information on mind-body practices is not only excellent but was enough to get me to get trained on those practices that have shown great effectiveness. The non-demonization of pharmaceuticals as well as the use of CAM for supplementing them (and, of course, replacing them) was very helpful; I had some misinformation about clinical trials that the authors greatly helped with. A very strong element of the book is its openness -- grounding in science and a desire to get it across that mental health professionals need to take the responsibility to educate themselves on the mechanisms of these agents and practices (that's why the book tries to avoid a cookbook recipe for prescribing specific protocols for symptoms and disorders).

If the authors are reading this, here is some feedback on improvements: 1. Dr. Brown has commented elsewhere on the use of Tianeptine, Reboxetine, Picamilion, and Piracetam for depression but these aren't discussed in the mood disorders chapter (Tianeptine is mentioned in the DHEA discussion; Picamilion, and Piracetam are discussed in a different chapter). 2. I think it's important to emphasize the value of CBT/ExRP therapy (esp.
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