Postpartum Depression, Acupuncture & Nutrition


In a bold new move, the state of New Jersey passed a law (Nov. 2006, Volume 23, Issue 11) requiring all doctors to educate and screen expectant mothers and their families for postpartum depression (PPD.) This action is hot on the heels of the Andrea Yates case and many other similar tragic cases. Other states may soon follow suit.

The medical community has nothing to offer women suffering from PPD but counseling and drugs, which means millions more potential women patients for the drug makers. By the very nature of these drugs, many women will likely become patients and drug-takers in one form or another for life. What a wonderful way to start a family - even if the intention is good- by mandating screening laws that will most likely lead to prescribing drugs. In yet another shrewd move to "education" the public about the need to treat postpartum depression, the standard medical fare of drugs and counseling will become the norm.

Main Cause of Postpartum Depression

Postpartum depression is a serious condition. We have treated hundreds of women with this problem. Drugs should always be relegated to the treatment option of last resort. Andrea Yates was on many types of drugs prior to murdering her children. As usual, drug treatment completely overlooks the main cause of postpartum depression- severe nutritional deficiencies and imbalances, especially of the B vitamins.

Today, it is rare indeed for young women to be nutritionally optimal prior to getting pregant. Even fewer women take the time to prepare for a pregnancy by becoming nutritionally healthy. In addition, despite proof that mother and baby are healthier with three years between pregnancies, too many women become pregnant too soon after a previous delivery.

Effective, Safe and Inexpensive

Effective, safe and inexpensive - these are not the standard words that describe most medical care. And the new "educational" program is not any different. From August 2005 to May 2006, New Jersey has trained more than 4,500 doctors, nurses, psychologists, and social workers to screen and treat patients with postpartum depression. The screening alone is unscientific at best.

Using questionnaires and interviews to determine whether a woman should be placed on powerful, dangerous, expensive drugs, is fraught with problems. Should a woman take medication because she may be depressed? Who makes these decisions? Is it a Health Department official who's taken a short training course? Who takes the woman off the drugs? And when? What happens to her when she is taken off drugs? Getting off these drugs is no picnic- especially if one is caring for an infant and most likely one or more siblings.

The alternative is that every woman who even suspects postpartum depression should immediately be put on a phytonutrient regimen that will actually treat the cause of her problem. Most women respond well and rapidly to this type of treatment. Although it is not standard medical fare, it is effective, safe, and inexpensive. Women who do not respond to proper nutritional therapy, exercise, and a good, healthy diet, might then be referred for counseling. The small minority of those who still do not respond might be considered for short-term drug therapy.

We recommend for many of our pregnant patients who have difficulty taking standard prenatal vitamins to take whole food vitamins that we can special order at affordable prices.

Supplementing these nutrients alone will begin to pull most women out of postpartum depression in a metter of days or weeks.

A woman's overall nutrition must be rebuilt after pregnancy and during lactation and that requires a diet rich in whole foods. 

Of course, individual women have individual needs and a competent alternative doctor or nutritionist can address these. If you are having trouble finding an answer to your specific problem, you can always drop me a line with a description of it and I will try to provide the information you need at

Lactation, "Colic," and PPD

All mothers should breastfeed for at least six months to a year. However, this entire procedure can be profoundly complicated for women suffering from PPD. And emotional problems aside, not all women are nutritionally up to the task. When breast milk is not nutritionally adequate for the baby, problems multiply.

In addition to feeling depressed, these mothers are now faced with a starving baby that will inevitably be diagnosed with "colic" - aother on-disease. This can turn depression into psychosis. Remarkably, in most cases, colic is not a medical malady at all. Almost all babies who constantly cry and canot be comforted or quieted are starving for nutrition. A small percentage have been injured in delivery and are in pain.

Supplementing breast milk with a traditional formula that is loaded with fat and nutrition solves most of these cases quickly. For the remainder, a checkup with a pediatric chiropractor is in order. The recipe for the traditional formula is available at the Weston A. Price Foundation website: . Take the time to make this remarkable formula. I simply canot express how worthwhile it is. In most cases, it will cure "colic" (hunger) in 24 hours! Without this additional problem, mothers have a chance to recover.

Sound Treatment for PPD

If you, your children, friends, or family suffer from postpartum depression, please take this condition seriously, and treat it naturally ad with common sense. The medical and pharmaceutical industries are gearing up to use the state's Health Departments to drum up millions of women for drug therapy. Taking antidepressants is a very serious dilemma due to the numerous side effects, one being suicidal ideation. Trying to get them to get their doctors to wean them off them is not an easy task. Toxic prescription drugs for life are endemic. The whole situation is depressing - no pun intended.

Luckily women have viable and effective choices. Acupuncture, herbal and nutritional therapies can simply replenish the brain nutrients that have been depleted during pregnancy and feeding babies the breast milk and fatty nutrition they need, resulting in helping mothers enjoy the peace and serenity that can come from good physical and mental health.

West, B. Postpartum Depression: Medical Windfall, Health Alert. Nov. 2006/Vol.23,11.


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