Nutritional Supplements and Orthomolecular medicine: A Paradigm Shift in Medicine

Nutrition has taken a back seat to modern medicine for many years, and many health care providers continue to downplay its role in human health. Studies indicate that most physicians receive less than 25 hours of nutrition instruction and some medical schools provide no nutrition education at all. Most physicians readily admit they are ill prepared to offer nutrition counseling.

Today, the medical world is beginning to understand the importance of proper nutrition in healthcare, a paradigm shift that holds great promise for advancements. However, proponents continue to argue that the vitamin and mineral supplementation lacks scientific evidence, describing the practice as merely a fad.

The idea that vitamins, minerals, plant compounds, enzymes and amino-acids can be used to treat illness has been around since the days of Hippocrates, but the concept came to the forefront of modern medicine when American biochemist Dr. Linus Pauling coined the term “orthomolecular medicine” in the 1960s. Dr. Pauling promoted the use of "megavitamin therapy", which continues to gain acceptance by the modern scientific community. Pauling himself is a good example as he lived into his 93rd year and receiving a Nobel Price for his scientific achievements.

Dr. Abram Hoffer was a prominent Canadian biochemist who studied the effects of orthomolecular medicine and mental health. Dr. Hofer determined that megavitamin therapy, primarily certain forms of vitamin B, are effective treatments for drug and alcohol addiction and disorders such as depression, schizophrenia and some forms of dementia.

Hofer believed that alcoholics require proper nutrition and vitamin supplementation to restore proper metabolic functioning. Although proponents argue that vitamins can be toxic for some individuals, he noted that pharmaceutical drugs, even when used as prescribed by a medical provider, kill thousands of people, while there have been no documented deaths attributable to vitamin therapy.

Research indicates that many diseases and disorders are the result of imbalances in the body, often the result of a poor diet, excessive consumption of processed foods and exposure to environmental toxins. Nutritional supplementation involves adjusting deficiencies and imbalances based on each person’s individual biochemistry. Proper diagnosis and treatment, determined by an in-depth medical history and extensive specialized laboratory tests, ensure the body has the correct combination of vitamins, minerals, amino acids, trace elements, fatty acids and enzymes. The key to successful nutritional supplementation is to heal the body so it can heal itself.

Treatment also involves learning about proper nutrition, including ways to prepare healthy food so nutrient content is maintained. A carefully planned program may relieve a number of emotional and physical problems, including mood disorders, gastrointestinal problems, allergies, arthritis, eczema, asthma, high blood pressure, cholesterol imbalance, heart disease and much more.

We believe a healthy bio-chemistry is an important aspect of drug and alcohol treatment and rehab, and that improved physical vitality, emotional stability, clearer thinking and reduced stress help each client receive the greatest benefit from their recovery program.

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