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Dr. Whitaker and Psychiatric Diagnosis

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May 11, 2006

Dear Art,

Celebrities are constantly making headlines. And we as a culture can’t get enough — the supermarket checkout stands full of tabloids prove it. While mistakes, taboos, and some bold-faced lies are typically splashed across front pages, every once in a while, a true, important message makes it through.

As many of you know, I am a strong opponent of the indiscriminate use of psychotropic drugs. The following interview will give you more insight on the topic, as well as let you in on how I believe one Hollywood star used his fame and popularity for a good cause.

Yours in health,

Julian Whitaker, MD

Pam Killeen from the CRUSADOR: Could you begin by telling us how you were first invited on CNN to give feedback to Tom Cruise’s statements against psychiatry?

Dr. Whitaker: I’m not sure exactly why they contacted me, but they knew that I’m a supporter of non-psychiatric drug treatment of mental disorders. I’m also very outspoken about the issues surrounding the fact that none of the psychiatric diagnoses have any scientific basis. I was a good proponent of what Tom Cruise had implied. Tom Cruise is a celebrity and celebrities can say anything they wish. Cruise knew what he was talking about when he said that the psychiatric evaluations aren’t based on science — period! They’re just made up, and the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual is growing with more and more fabricated “mental illnesses.” Pretty soon, we’re not going to find a normal person anywhere in the country…unless they’re drugged.

Pam: Now President Bush is pushing for Teen Screen to try and get children dependent upon psychiatric drugs from a very young age.

Dr. Whitaker: I think the “pharmaceutical industry is looking at our children the way the logging industry would look at a redwood forest” (quote from an article in the LA Times recently). In reality, this is likely the most evil thing that we’re facing as a civilized world. They want to force children to answer intimate and embarrassing questions on a questionnaire that is designed to get them on pharmaceutical drugs. For instance, I took the Prozac survey on the Internet. I didn’t answer the survey truthfully; I answered every question as “sometimes,” and I definitely fell into a category where I needed a drug. They recommended that I see a doctor, and that I could be helped by a drug simply because “sometimes” I may feel bad.

The questions are designed to create the illusion that the children are sick. They are then geared to drugging the children. This has two problems. 1) When a child is labeled as being defective, what is that going to do to the child? 2) These labels follow the child the rest of his or her life. That, in and of itself, is evil.

When you combine that with the fact that these children are given powerful, psychoactive drugs that prevent their normal development, you’re playing with fire. Giving kids these drugs is like putting kids in straight jackets. One of the fastest growing areas of drugs right now is for children who are six years old and under. There is only one word to describe that and that is “EVIL.”

Pam: Many children today are diagnosed with ADD and, subsequently, being prescribed drugs that have serious side effects.

Dr. Whitaker: ADD is a fabricated diagnosis. It’s just normal human behavior that people don’t like.

Pam: Margot Kidder has come forward describing how she was able to overcome her “mental illness” by using natural methods. With the Canadian Schizophrenia Foundation, she made a documentary called “Masks of Madness,” describing how she was able to recover from her “mental illness” by using the advice of Dr. Abram Hoffer. When you were on CNN, you acknowledged Dr. Hoffer for his outstanding work treating mental illness. I put Margot Kidder on a pedestal for coming forward disclosing her success story and giving hope to others who suffer from mental illness. If a patient suffering with a mental illness comes to see you, what type of improvements could they experience?

Dr. Whitaker: In my practice, we see a lot of people who see their energy levels increase, or their happiness ratio increase, when they get healthier. Just increasing and improving health will do wonders for the majority of people who have been labeled as being mentally ill. This goes for people who are experiencing fatigue, who may be depressed. Very often, we find that they have hormonal imbalances, nutritional deficiencies, or lack exercise. We help them solve these areas of depletion in their lives. We help them increase the quality of their lives and they feel better. We see it all the time. I have had nearly 40,000 people come through my clinic, and I have never started anyone on an antidepressant medication.

I have been successful at helping people enhance their mood and their quality of life. This is what you should be after. I’m not saying I’m successful with everyone. But if I can have this type of an experience with 40,000 people, even though I don’t prescribe what psychiatrists use every day, then something is wrong with what psychiatrists are doing.

Pam: Going back to your appearance on CNN, you mentioned that psychiatry is “not pseudoscience,” and that it’s simply “not science.”

Dr. Whitaker: Psychiatry is not science; it’s observations of human behavior, without any scientific backup. For example, diagnosing someone with a “chemical imbalance” is a fabricated diagnosis. They have no evidence whatsoever of any chemical imbalance. They can’t measure it; they can’t find it. So, there’s no chemical imbalance that’s measurable. That’s like saying there’s heart disease when you can’t measure anything other than symptoms. It’s contrary to all of medicine when you fabricate a behavior as a disease and then you say there’s a chemical imbalance.

Then, they try and justify their results with a PET scan. Well, a PET scan can’t detect a chemical imbalance. Secondly, you can alter PET scans with natural substances such as arginine, vitamin E, etc….

Pam: They showed PET scan results on CNN, saying that these tests show differences in brain function of people who are depressed. It seems to me that if you happen to be having a bad day, your PET scan could show diminished flow in certain areas of your brain. In that case, you could be diagnosed with depression and be prescribed a drug.

Dr. Whitaker: PET scans do not show a chemical imbalance. They can measure blood flows in the brain, for example. And, that’s not chemical. Some of the PET scan results may be consistent with some behaviors. You can improve PET scans scores using natural substances better than pharmaceutical drugs.

Pam: People who are living with mental illness can be extremely debilitated. They can be tortured individuals. It’s tragic. According to Dr. Hoffer, schizophrenia is the most expensive treatment program available today. It costs a great deal of money to institutionalize these patients. And, worse, they’re given very little hope.

Dr. Whitaker: Schizophrenia is a psychotic behavior where there is a lack of affect and a disassociation without any feedback. That is a serious problem. The drugs that are helpful for schizophrenia simply dampen everything. I’ve heard that a lot of schizophrenic patients don’t want to take the drugs primarily because they don’t feel anything. They would rather feel their craziness than feel nothing. The drugs appear to be helpful because they virtually shut off their response. In many cases, this may be characterized as an improvement. I don’t know the answer to the delusions and psychoses that people experience. I do know that they can’t find why they have these symptoms yet. If you find out why, then you find the success using nutrition such as niacin and other supplements.

For several decades now, Dr. Hoffer has been recommending a lot of B-complex, particularly niacin, in treating schizophrenia. His protocol also includes a variety of other nutrients and dietary changes. I’ve been familiar with him for almost 50 years. In the early 1970’s, I met with Linus Pauling with about four or five other doctors. We founded the California Orthomolecular Society, which is today the Orthomolecular Medical Society. Abram Hoffer was the first to use the term Orthomolecular, meaning the use of substances that are common and essential to the body to maintain your health and/or prevent and heal disease.

The understanding of how to use these substances (vitamin C, folic acid, niacin, arginine, CoQ10, carnitine), all of these elements that we have discovered over the last 60 or 70 years — as therapies — that’s the most significant breakthrough in medicine in the last century. All of this drug business is nonsense. Of all of the drugs on the market today, not one of them will be on the market 150 years from now. Not one. Yet, virtually all orthomolecular substances that are here today will be around forever. So, when we find these orthomolecular substances that have healing properties, they will have healing properties indefinitely. The only reason that they are not being used in medicine is because you cannot patent them. If you could patent them like you could Vioxx or Prozac or Zoloft, they would be the “darlings” of the pharmaceutical industry. Since you can’t patent them — since God didn’t patent his work, he just gave it to us to use — nobody can make big money on it. Consequently, the effort to eliminate natural substances from the health market place is fierce.

Pam: Margot Kidder speaks about her experiences while she was ill. She explains that one day a given psychiatrist would tell her she was bipolar. Another day, another psychiatrist would tell her she was manic depressive. Another day, she would be told she was schizophrenic. It would all depend on what they were reading in their A–Z manual. Do psychiatrists really know what they are doing?

Dr. Whitaker: In reality, they don’t know what they are doing. Their road map, or the references that they use, are not based on science; rather, they are based on their opinion of what the behavior is. There is no measurement of anything. Consequently, it’s not a science. It’s observation of human behavior. Observation of human behavior could be considered a science if you’re correctly identifying behaviors. But, to attribute that to a chemical disorder when you cannot measure it or find it or demonstrate it, here in this day and age, is not reasonable.

Pam: Do you have anything else you’d like to add before we finish?

Dr. Whitaker: There are two things I’d like to finish with. Be very careful about choosing medical care, because it involves high drug and high technique. These are the obvious choices because there is so much money involved in using drugs and surgery as primary tools in treatment. The only defense people have in the inappropriate use in drugs and surgery is getting information about alternative sources. Conventional medical doctors dislike alternative sources, but if they were open-minded and investigated alternative sources, they would have more success at helping their patients.

Pam: And your second comment?

Dr. Whitaker: Understand that the major scientific discovery of the 20th century was man’s ability to isolate active natural ingredients. We’re finding active, natural ingredients almost at the same rate as the drug companies are making new, non-biological drugs. CoQ10 is only 30 or 40 years old. We now know how to generate nitric oxide using arginine. These are very new and promising discoveries. The areas where you will have the biggest bang for your buck are going to be in finding out how you can use these natural substances to create health.

Pam: Thank you for sharing your time with us, Dr. Whitaker. I hope that your words will give hope to those who are feeling trapped in the “solution-less” vicious cycle of psychiatric medicine and/or conventional medicine as a whole.


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