Case Files: Teenage Depression Completely Turned Around!
Posted by Dr. Bruce Semon
I had a patient who presented as a very depressed teenager, 16 years old, whom I will call Chrystal (not her real name). She was so depressed that she was unable to attend school, or even speak. Imagine how devastating this was to Chrystal, 16 years old with her entire life ahead of her!
When she came in, Chrystal had symptoms of depression and fatigue. These problems had been intermittent for three years. Periodically she stops sleeping, has nightmares, has trouble with her thoughts. The previous year, her Freshman year, she missed a lot of school. Sometimes Chrystal is unable to talk and unable to take care of herself. When she’s fine, Chrystal is a 4.0 student and an athlete. Usually the episodes are less than 2 weeks. Chrystal blames home stress. She does not sleep well during these episodes. She says she would like to go back in time. She was taking vitamins and minerals for neurotransmitters and rhodiola.
I prescribed Nystatin Oral Suspension, which is an easy to take form of Nystatin, but not ideal. Two months later, she still was depressed, fatigue, had food sensitivities and “leaky gut.” The first appointment was during the summer, before the start of school, and Chrystal had not complied with treatment, which is not too unusual. She came back about a month after school started. Chrystal reported that she was not attending school, and said she “was not thinking.” She had all of the problems she reported earlier.
To me, as her treating doctor, she looked terrible. She could not express herself. She was crying but if her mother tried to say what was going on, she would argue with her mother and not let her mother talk because she could not listen to what her mother had to say about her. I feared that she was so bad, she might be developing major mental illness.
I convinced her to try a different form of Nystatin plus the Feast Without Yeast diet. I prescribed Nystatin oral powder instead of the oral suspension. I also started her on a homeopathic remedy called lycopodium, which is for anxiety and insomnia in children.
She came back two weeks later. She had attended school since starting the Nystatin. She was smiling and happy and told me she felt fine. The contrast could not have been more striking.
I am hoping that she will continue to follow the treatment plan so she can live a happy, productive life.
Depression and Yeast
This information is by Dr. Bruce Semon, a Board Certified Psychiatrist (Adult, Child and Adolescent). It is excerpted from Dr. Semon’s book, An Extraordinary Power to Heal (2003).
Depression improves when a person is treated for intestinal Candida yeast.
First, what is depression? Psychiatrists define depression as a group of symptoms including down or sad mood, loss of pleasure in usual activities, loss of energy, decreased appetite, poor sleep, and diminished self esteem. Depression can disrupt and ruin people¹s lives by taking away their energy and ability to function. Antidepressant drugs help about 75% of people, but cause significant side effects.
No one knows what causes depression.
As a psychiatrist, I have treated hundreds of patients for depression using conventional medications. I have seen what works and what does not, and what the side effects are. I have treated many depressed patients who have been receptive to nontraditional treatment. I can say with certainty that depressed people who are treated with the 4 Stages diet and nystatin improve significantly with none of the side effects of the conventional medications. This diet is fully explained in An Extraordinary Power to Heal, and recipes and menus to implement it can be found in Extraordinary Foods for the Everyday Kitchen and Feast Without Yeast: 4 Stages to Better Health. Prescription information for nystatin, and what nystatin is and can do, is fully explained in An Extraordinary Power to Heal.
I explain this by saying that yeast chemicals slow down the brain and make the brain function less well than it should. Many Americans eat foods which contain chemicals which slow down the brain. The intestinal yeast Candida albicans also makes chemicals which slow down the brain. I discuss these chemicals in detail in Chapter 2 of An Extraordinary Power to Heal. Taking in these chemicals will diminish with anti-yeast treatment. From a clinical perspective, I see the relationship between reducing intake of such chemicals and improvement of depressive symptoms.
I offer the following thoughts on why this may occur. The brain may slow itself down as a reaction and as a protective mechanism against such chemicals. As an analogy, if one is outside breathing toxic chemicals, if one is less active and is breathing less, then one will inhale fewer toxic chemicals. If one is exercising vigorously, one will be breathing harder and will take in more of these airborne toxic chemicals. A similar mechanism may occur in the brain. If the brain is more active, then if toxic chemicals are present, more will enter the brain and affect the brain. If the brain is less active, such toxic chemicals may have less impact.
Although I cannot say for sure why the anti-yeast treatment works, we can see from the cases that it does.
Mary, 37, reported she was tired and fatigued. She also told me she had weakness in her arms when writing and feelings of being clumsy. She was depressed. She had been treated for depression before. She complained of memory problems and of becoming depressed before her period. She slept all the time. She had cut back her work schedule. Mary was having vaginal yeast infections often, the most recent a few weeks before. She also complained of rectal itch, irritability and morning tiredness. Mary had nausea, gas and watery nose, worse in fall. She said that she ate no sugar, but still craved it. She had taken many antibiotics in the past including tetracycline for acne.
I started Mary on Stage I of the 4 Stages diet, and prescribed nystatin. Nystatin helped her improve significantly with none of the side effects of the conventional medications. This diet is fully explained in An Extraordinary Power to Heal, and recipes and menus to implement it can be found in Extraordinary Foods for the Everyday Kitchen and Feast Without Yeast: 4 Stages to Better Health. Prescription information for nystatin, and what nystatin is and can do, is fully explained in An Extraordinary Power to Heal.
Mary returned six weeks later. Mary’s depression had cleared up completely, as did her nausea. Mary reported that she had only minimal feelings of tiredness in the morning and no clumsy feelings. Her writing was easier with no weakness. The rectal itch was gone except when she was off the diet. Mary no longer needed as much sleep. Her watery nose had improved. She was taking one quarter teaspoon of nystatin three times a day.