Always consult a doctor before undergoing treatment of any kind. The author of this article is not a doctor so if you decide to undertake the treatment described in this article, do so at your own risk.
How to Stop Addiction
Of all the things my husband and I have ever lived through, the experience of loving someone who was addicted to drugs was probably the most painful. John and I have been foster parents. We’ve lost children to stillbirth and miscarriage, but when a young adult or teen you love is doing drugs, the pain is excruciating and it just seems to go on and on.
We have one daughter, and she never did drugs. She barely drank alcohol. We raised her in a very open environment in regard to these things and we gave her opportunities to try alcohol and marijuana under our watchful eye. And she grew up and did just fine under this regime.
We traveled internationally for several months of every year and when she was 18 years old, we went to Burma as a side-trip in Southeast Asia. We were scheduled to be there for only 4 days.
On our first night, after we arrived at our hotel, we went to a restaurant in Bagan. She fell in love with our waiter and he with her. He followed here. And they have now been married for nearly 2 years.
But when she first met him, she didn’t know that he was addicted to meth. In fact, he didn’t know he was addicted to meth. The restaurant owners had given meth to their workers to get them to work harder and to keep them from being able to think clearly enough to formulate their own plan to leave.
The reality of this situation came to light over the course of that first year that they were together. I had dreams about drugs, but refused to acknowledge the problem. I was terrified of it. But it was through my dreams that I found the answer to the problem too. And I learned to listen more carefully to my fear and to use it as a doorway…and that fear and hope are two sides of the same coin.
You see, years ago, my husband developed melanoma. And we cured his cancer using natural remedies (vitamin B17, DMSO, and baking soda). So, when my daughter and her husband split because of his addiction (they still loved each other deeply), and once the problem (the meth addiction) was identified as The Problem, I started contacting everyone I knew who’d been addicted to meth to ask them how they’d quit. I opened my mind to the idea that kids were prescribed meth as Adderall and that there was hope that my son-in-law could eventually quit.
I read books on talk therapy and rehab centers and felt like there was no way these things could help a Burmese man who was not a native speaker of the English language and who had been raised in a very different culture without ever seeing a single “Just Say No,” PSA on TV.
So I contacted a girl on my Facebook page who’d been a meth addict but who now worked as a healer. She told me that she drank a lot of coffee at first when she quit and that gave me an important lead into scientific literature on dopamine. Caffeine and meth create an almost identical physiological reaction in the brain. And that made me wonder what other plant-based medicines were out there to help my son-in-law “switch addictions” or better yet, heal his brain and physiology so that he could be completely free of addiction.
Drug Addiction in Teens and Adults: Part I – Supplements
If you don’t know what to do if your child is addicted to drugs, you’re not alone. There’s nothing more terrifying than having a loved one who’s addicted to a drug like heroin or meth. Below I talk about supplements that we used to help my son-in-law cure meth addiction, but I also talk about plant medicines that work to cure narcotics addiction, nicotine addiction, alcohol addiction, and even social media addiction, video game addiction, porn addiction, and smartphone addiction.
Here is an introductory list of anti-addiction supplements that work for methamphetamines, heroine, alcohol, and really anything addictive (because all addictions stem from issues with dopamine and norepinephrine levels in the brain):
- Mucuna pruriens – 6,000-15,000 mg per day
- Kudzu – (use this in addition to Mucuna for alcohol addiction) – 2000-3000 mg per day
- 5-HTP derived from the plant Griffonia simplicifolia
- NAC / N-Acetyl-Cysteine (detoxifies the brain and quells compulsive thoughts and behaviors)
- Resveratrol (in small doses, it potentiate the Mucuna pruriens)
- Coenzyme Q10 (in high doses it helps detoxify the brain)
- Vitamin B6 and the other B Complex vitamins (these are necessary for the body to properly metabolize the other supplements listed above)
- Super Balanced Neurotransmitter Complex
- Melatonin – (for sleep)
- Magnolia Bark – (for sleep–this supplement is especially important for heroin addicts)
Ultimately, addiction is a behavior that happens when the brain is depleted of dopamine. Two things happen in addiction: 1) the substance or activity causes a burst of dopamine to be released in the brain and 2) the dopamine receptors, as a result, are reduced in number making it harder for the addicted person to get a dopamine rush (tolerance). The burst of dopamine and the resulting reduced number of dopamine receptors in the brain is what causes the cravings and compulsive behavior of seeking out of the object of addiction.
I began my search for a cure for addiction by looking at the scientific literature and by reaching out to people who had once been addicted to meth to try to understand how meth addiction feels and what they did to quit. One of the first plant medicines I found to help with overcoming addiction was Kratom, a plant that can also be addictive.
A lot of people would use Kratom to cure a heroin addiction or addiction to narcotics because it behaves physiologically in the body like an opiate. And people would try to keep themselves from becoming addicted to Kratom by cycling day-to-day from red vein to green vein to white vein and then taking a day off and then cycling back through these different plant strains again. This was intriguing to me. I was able to find instances where people used Kratom for meth addiction too. And often, they were successful.
But Kratom isn’t legal in all countries of the world. And at the time when I was doing the research, my daughter was in Mexico, estranged from my son-in-law by COVID. He was trapped in Myanmar. And in Southeast Asia, some people will combine Kratom with cough syrup to make a drug that’s probably worse than meth for the brain. In fact, Kratom is illegal in Southeast Asia even though most of the Kratom in the U.S. comes from this region of the world.
So, for my son-in-law, Kratom was not an option.
So, I kept reading and eventually found a plant medicine called Akuamma. This is a seed that grows in Africa. It has effects that are similar to Kratom, but it’s still legal. Akuamma users say that it’s good for pain-relief, but it doesn’t work as well as Kratom for opiate addiction. Nonetheless, I ordered some and put it in a “kit” that we intended to take with us overseas when the time was right for my daughter and her husband to reunite. I’ve tried Akuamma and I agree with what I’ve read online: it helps with pain-relief, but it doesn’t make a big change in mood.
I began writing down my dreams at this time. Whatever came to me in the night that I could remember, I wrote it down. And one night, after spending the day reading through a pile of books and research, I wrote down the word KUDZU in big block letters. I had no memory in the morning of having written this word, but I Googled it first thing in the morning to find that Kudzu is plant-medicine used to help alcoholics stop drinking alcohol.
Apparently, when an alcoholic is given high enough doses of Kudzu, they drink 20% less than they normally would even if they have no desire or intention to quit drinking.
Though this lead was about alcohol, it was important because it demonstrated that an addicted person could take a specific plant medicine that would help them quit their addiction whether they wanted to quit or not. And the thing is, Kudzu is relatively harmless. It’s not addictive itself and it doesn’t hurt the people who take it to quit drinking. In fact, this medicine can be used to help alcoholics who are struggling with liver issues to ease up on their drinking even if they don’t consciously want to.
That day, I looked up Kudzu in a botany book that I have in my library and found a plant named Mucuna pruriens.
Mucuna was the plant that has changed our lives.
As I mentioned above, Mucuna is related to Kudzu. It’s known as Velvet Bean or “Nescafe” (as a joke) in Central America where people eat the bean as part of their daily diet. After having studied cancer cures for many years, I knew the politics that keep valuable natural cures like this hidden and it immediately became clear that many people were confused about Mucuna pruriens and the natural form of L-Dopa that it contains because pharmaceutical companies had created a smokescreen wasn’t easy for a lot of people to decipher.
Basically, by nick-naming Levodopa, a pharmaceutical used for Parkinson’s Disease, “LDopa”, Big Pharma has been able to keep people from finding information about natural L-Dopa, the dopamine precursor that exists in Mucuna.
It isn’t hard to see the difference between these two substances. And you don’t have to be a neurosurgeon to know that a small difference in the chemical makeup of a substance would make a big difference in terms of how that substance would function in the brain.
So, if you’re worried and wondering what to do if your child is addicted to drugs, consider getting Mucuna pruriens supplements or Kudzu supplements (depending on your child’s addiction).
Treating Addiction at Home: Part II – Diet
Again, it doesn’t matter whether your child is addicted to drugs or social media. Addiction is a problem that has to do with dopamine levels in the brain combined with downregulated dopamine receptors (the receptors die-off as a result of over-exposure to dopamine). With that in mind, as a parent, you can help a child who’s addicted to drugs, alcohol, nicotine, or even videogames or their smartphone to overcome the problem by changing their diet.
One of the things I noticed about my son-in-law when we first met him was that he was always starving for chicken! He worked at a vegetarian restaurant in Myanmar, and normally, he only got to eat chicken twice a month. But after he met my daughter, he had access to chicken more often and took every opportunity to consume meat. His obsession with chicken was an important clue though that helped me figure out that amino acids were really important in rebuilding dopamine stores and receptors. It didn’t take long for me to find drug rehab facilities that offered amino acid therapies.
Of course, it was easy to see that the effects of L-Dopa in Mucuna pruriens and the role of amino acids in addiction were related. L-Dopa is made from amino acids like phenylalanine and tyrosine. To summarize, what I’ve found after a year of heavy research, without the right amino acids in the diet, people become susceptible to addiction. The object of the addiction varies from person-to-person. While one person may get addicted to meth, another person may become hopelessly addicted to porn. But the susceptibility to addiction starts with a diet that’s too low in certain amino acids.
For an addict, the most dangerous type of “healthy” diet is one that’s vegan or vegetarian. Addicts need a LOT of amino acids and they also need B vitamins, especially vitamin B6. Meats like chicken contain not only the amino acids they need, but also the B vitamins. But for someone who has already become addicted to something, it’s important to take supplements in addition to eating a diet that includes meat.
If your child was raised as a vegan or as a vegetarian, you might consider putting chicken and other animal products on the menu again. Check out the Budwig Quark recipe as another important add-on that contains bioavailable omegas and fatty acids that help the brain rebuild itself.
Even if your child isn’t technically vegan or vegetarian, if they only eat highly processed foods and a lot of refined sugars, they’re going to be prone to addiction. Refined sugars are more addictive than cocaine and they can perpetuate low dopamine levels in the brain even if you provide your child with a lot of healthy amino acids in their diet.
And don’t think that serving chicken will fix an addiction in progress. If your child begins eating animal products, give them a proteolytic enzyme to keep their pancreas healthy and give them Mucuna supplements in addition to their high-amino diet. But remember that when a person consumes animal products or amino acid supplements, the bigger amino acids may sometimes inhibit the smaller ones like the L-Dopa in Mucuna from making it past the blood-brain barrier. So the supplements are still essential and they should be taken at different times of the day from meals that include animal products.
What to Do If Your Child Is Addicted to Drugs: Part III – No One Wants to Be Addicted
Finally, I work off the assumption that no one likes to be controlled by a substance or an object of addiction and that addiction is a manifestation of deeper physiological problems. There are theories out there that addiction is caused by trauma or that it’s a manifestation of a lack of willpower, but while some of that may be true in some cases, it’s been my experience that having adequate dopamine in the brain is the starting block for overcoming addiction. And that addiction is a person’s attempt to heal the problem of having a lack of dopamine in the brain.
It can take a year or longer for the brain to rebuild the dopamine receptors that should populate the synapse in a normal, healthy brain if the addict does NOT take Mucuna. But scientific research has shown that it takes about 5 months for these receptors to rebuild when the addict takes about 6000 mg of Mucuna per day (taken 4 times per day, about every 3 hours in 1500 mg doses).
After my son-in-law started taking 6000 mg of Mucuna per day, his whole view of the world changed. Day-by-day, he became more and more easy-going. Every day he got a little better, but the results were visible literally 4 hours after he’d taken that first big dose of Mucuna. And suddenly, after 5 months of Mucuna, he started to make jokes, and laugh. He became more open-minded about everything. It was a miraculous recovery.
It was one of the most painful journeys I’ve ever taken. There were so many low points and moments when we thought there was no hope. And I swore that if we got through it that I’d write tirelessly about it.
My son-in-law has, at the time of this writing, been meth-free for 7 months. He has built a source of income and learned to drive a car over the past two months and he’s learning a new language in a new country. His health has improved exponentially. And though I can’t say what the future will bring, I know that now that he’s overcome his addiction once that he could do it again if he were to relapse.
But I also believe that the likelihood of relapse is significantly reduced by the fact that he eats a diet that contains no refined sugars and that’s high in amino acids and healthy omega fatty acids. Parents who are worried that their teen is addicted to drugs need to know about Mucuna and how diet affects addiction. You can treat addiction at home. We treated addiction from half a globe away with the addict living in a third-world country where Mucuna was thankfully available.
And remember, Mucuna is a bean, so you can eat it like a food. Add it to chili or nacho cheese. Cook the Mucuna powder the way that you would cook dried beans.
The supplements that you’ll find most helpful in overcoming any addiction are:
- Mucuna pruriens – 6000 mg per day (taken every 4 hours)
Mucuna must be taken with B-complex vitamins and zinc in order for the body to convert this plant medicine into neurotransmitters to diminish withdrawals. Taking this supplement gives your body all the necessary materials it needs to manufacture the most important anti-addiction neurotransmitters: dopamine, norepinephrine, and epinephrine.
- 5-HTP – 100 mg up to 4 times per day, as needed (taken every 4 hours)
5-HTP can be extremely helpful during the withdrawal process, but some people respond better to this amino acid than others. Try it at a low dose at first and note whether you feel better or worse in terms of mood, ability to sleep, irritability levels, etc. This supplement gives your body the necessary materials to manufacture serotonin, a neurotransmitter that plays a role in depression.
- St. John’s Wort – 300 -1500 mg taken in divided doses every 4 hours
If 5-HTP benefits you during the withdrawal process from addiction, St. John’s Wort may add another layer of support to your protocol. This plant medicine will help your brain make more efficient use of 5-HTP. But you may or may not need St. John’s Wort depending on the biochemical reasons underlying your addiction. Take a low dose of St. John’s Wort with 5-HTP to see how it affects you. You may or may not need it to overcome your social media and smartphone addiction.
- N-Acetyl-Cysteine / NAC– 100-600 mg every 4 hours
NAC is an over-the-counter antioxidant that helps the body regulate glutamate levels in the brain. As such, it regulates the levels of glutamate and GABA in the brain. These two neurotransmitters balance neural excitement with neural relaxation. Taking this supplement at 100 to 600 mg several times throughout the day will help control obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors.
- L-Theanine – Take on an as-needed basis
L-Theanine has a calming effect on the body. It can influence the production of serotonin and dopamine and can help you enhance your mood, reduce cortisol levels and stress levels (as a result), making it easier to rest and relax.
- Multi-vitamin (take 1 dose per day in the morning)
Take a multivitamin that contains zinc, and vitamin C.
- Magnesium (take 400 mg in the morning and 400 mg right before bed)
Magnesium will relax your muscles and facilitate all the chemical reactions that are necessary for you to overcome addiction.
- Vitamin B Complex (take 1 dose per day in the morning)
Choose a vitamin B complex product that contains at least 25 mg of vitamin B6 per dose. Without the proper amount of B vitamins, your body won’t be able to make use of any of the other supplements you’re taking for withdrawals, so B vitamins are a vital part of successfully overcoming any addiction!
- Super Balanced Neurotransmitter Complex (take 1 dose daily; take it separately from Mucuna pruriens )
This supplement provides you with a high dose of vitamin B6, a vital nutrient in overcoming smartphone and social media addiction, along with an array of neurotransmitters that have been scientifically proven to positively affect mood and brain health.
- Amygdalin (Take 500 mg of this supplement at night, right before bed).
Amygdalin will help your body and brain rebuild neurological structures that may have been depleted as a result of addictive behaviors.
- Lugol’s Iodine (Purchase a 2% solution and start with 1 drop on the wrist in the morning every day adding 1 daily drop every 7 days until you get to 20 drops total per day.)
Lugol’s iodine contains the nutrients your body needs to be able to produce thyroid hormones and reproductive hormones in appropriate quantities. It helps to increase your norepinephrine levels (a neurotransmitter that plays a strong role in preventing relapse). If you consume bromine-containing items like breads or soft-drinks (check the ingredients on your bread and soft drink products for BVO’s – bromated vegetable oils) or if you swim regularly in a pool that’s sanitized using bromine, your iodine levels may be dangerously low and you may break out in a rash when you use this supplement as the bromine leaves the body during the initial stages of supplementation.
- Honokiol/Magnolia Bark – (take 400 mg 1 hour before bed)
Magnolia Bark is a plant medicine that will help you sleep. It has the ability to change its shape in the brain to provide your brain with whatever it needs to rest.
- L-Tryptophan – (take 1500 mg 1 hour before bed)
This is the amino acid in turkey that makes people feel sleepy after a big Thanksgiving dinner. L-Tryptophan is another serotonin precursor. You can take up to 15 grams of L-Tryptophan to relieve insomnia, but most people take between 1000 and 5000 mg before bed to help them sleep.
- Melatonin – (take 3 mg 1 hour before bed)
Melatonin will help you sleep and it will also help you maintain adequate serotonin levels in the brain.
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