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Author Topic: Meth Treatment: L-Tyrosine, diet etc.  (Read 3825 times)

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Meth Treatment: L-Tyrosine, diet etc.
« on: September 12, 2019, 04:59:16 PM »

With all the media attention on opioid addiction it is easy to forget that the stimulant drug methamphetamine was responsible for more drug-related treatment admissions in the state of Hawaii than any other drug. It was also number one in San Diego, second in San Francisco, and third in Denver and Phoenix. In Sacramento County, California, as of 2015, nearly twice as many addicts admitted to treatment programs used methamphetamine (41%) as alcohol (23%) or opioids (20%). Across the USA, methamphetamine is one of the four drugs most mentioned in emergency room visits.

A meth high releases three powerful stimulant neurotransmitters into the space between nerve cells in the brain. Dopamine creates feelings of arousal and reward. Norepinephrine focuses the mind and primes the memory. Epinephrine (adrenaline) stops hunger and pumps the body with agitated energy, and raises blood pressure, putting us in the fight or flight state which allows us to cope with sudden stress.

In a Frontline special “How Meth Destroys the Body” produced by PBS, a lab experiment on animals revealed that the level of dopamine rises by 100 to 200 units when the animal enjoyed food or sex. Dopamine rose by 350 units when the animal was given cocaine, and it shot up by 1,250 units when given methamphetamine.

What can be done to quench the powerful urge to keep using meth and to stop the hideous crash that begins as the drug wears off, the profound fatigue, and the other long-term consequences to brain and body of prolonged malnourishment and lack of sleep? What can keep people in recovery even though the most recent research suggests it takes at least a year for the brain to recovery function after stopping meth use?

You may be surprised to learn that some addiction treatment professionals find methamphetamine the easiest drug of all to treat successfully. According to Julia Ross, MA, author and nationally recognized pioneer in the use of nutrients and diet for addiction recovery, the over-the-counter amino acid L-tyrosine works literal magic on cravings for methamphetamine within an hour. It works by quickly restoring all three of the naturally stimulating neurotransmitters depleted by meth use.

Ross, a 40 year veteran in the addiction treatment field, and one of the cofounders of the Alliance for Addiction Solutions, finds that clients feel noticeably less inclined to use methamphetamine within ten minutes of starting treatment with L-tyrosine.

For full recovery from methamphetamine use, the addicted brain typically needs L-tyrosine three to four times a day for a year or more, depending on the individual’s history of use and inherited biochemistry.  Initially an individual will often need 2,000 mg per dose (4 capsules of 500mg each). Later, the dose may be dropped as brain repair proceeds.

Additionally, a full spectrum of other nutrients is needed to support the amino acid brain repair, derived from both wholesome food and specific nutritional supplements.  In this way the malnourished brain and body are both restored. These helper nutrients include vitamin C, a multivitamin/mineral combination with a strong B complex in it, and omega 3 fatty acids from cold water fish oil.

Finally, the individual recovering from methamphetamine addiction needs lots of rest and sleep to recover from the extensive string of sleepless nights while on the drug.

There are those in and outside of government who claim damage to a brain by meth is permanent, and yet, it’s clear to those who watch the transformation through neuronutrient therapy that the meth brain can be repaired.

For 18 years Carolyn Reuben, L.Ac. directed the non-traditional therapies used at Sacramento County’s Adult Drug Court run by the Probation Department.  During that time 51% of the clients used methamphetamine.  They and all other clients in the first six weeks of a 10-month treatment program received:
  • daily smoothie containing quality protein powder and fruit
  • weekly lessons in how food choices influenced their recovery
  • a weekly meal of wholesome food the clients learned to cook for themselves, including whole grain spaghetti and turkey meatballs, and brown rice with chicken and vegetable stir fry.
  • daily doses of the amino acids and other nutrients that questionnaires and personal interviews suggested they needed.
  • ear acupuncture several times a week
They also learned yoga and Chinese exercises like tai chi and qigong. 

One ten-year methamphetamine addict enthusiastically reported, “I’m not eating a lot of sugary foods so I’m not having the cravings for the drugs any more. I feel better about myself. “

Others report having more energy and gaining back the weight they needed to gain. One surprise for clients was how tasty nutritious food can be. “It’s not just plain and nasty food that I thought it would be,” said one, “It’s a lot better!”

“You’ve given us a whole extra week!” one delighted counselor told Reuben, noting that before the focus on brain repair the counselors were used to having people sit in group half asleep with foggy brains for their first two weeks in Drug Court. After the nutrition and acupuncture program began fogginess lasted only the first week so the counselors got more done with clients and felt more satisfied at work.

According to Reuben, “From 2004 to 2005 a study by the state of California’s Administrative Office of the Courts found 83% of Drug Court graduates were not re-arrested in the two years following graduation. Then we added a new nutritional component of a bag of healthy food to take home each week, and individualized nutritional supplements that the questionnaire designed by Alliance cofounder Julia Ross and personal interviews suggested were needed.  In 2005 the Institute for Social Policy at California State University Sacramento followed graduates for one year and found this time the re-arrest rate had dropped from 17% to 13%. Fully 87% of graduates had stayed out of the criminal justice system!”

Nutrition is a potent treatment tool for methamphetamine addiction and needs to be the foundation of every methamphetamine treatment program.

EDIT: Exercise is also highly recommended !
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