Natural Therapies for Overcoming Opioid Dependency: Control Pain and Recover from Addictionby Dr. Catherine Browne, 240 pages, 6x9, softcover. Thanks in no small part to predatory marketing by Purdue Pharma, the manufacturer of Oxycontin, the Sackler family has amassed billions of dollars in private wealth while millions of Americans sit trapped by opioid addiction and at least 130 die of opioid overdose daily. Conventional treatments for opioid addiction rely on other addictive substances and have high recidivism rates. Browne recommends Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) as an alternative and complementary approach. The book includes an overview of TCM; profiles of 32 herbs, 20 essential oils, and 5 flower essences useful in the treatment of opioid addiction; whole foods therapy and nutritional supplementation; treatment protocols and complex herbal formulas for both acute withdrawal symptoms and long-term health problems resulting from addiction; and alternate approaches to treating trauma and pain management. She takes a holistic attitude, acknowledging the strengths and weaknesses of both TCM and western medicine, and while there is plenty of non-clinical talk about “energy work” and the “vibrational levels” of plant medicines, she shores up her case with an admirable bibliography of contemporary research supporting the treatments she recommends. Empathetic, practical, and detailed, she takes a wide view of addiction, acknowledging the myriad physical, social, emotional, and spiritual factors and the array of complications that arise in battling and conquering opioid addiction. The book would likely be useful to people battling other substance dependencies or psychological challenges as well.-Alice Coyle NEW!
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