I’ve been following Dr. Kelly Brogan for several years now and I really love her approach. She is a rebel medical doctor with a science based approach to psychiatric illness – without the use of drugs. It’s no wonder her new book was blacklisted by the media (who are sponsored by Big Pharma)!
Reminiscent of A Room of Her Own by Virginia Woolf (long considered a rebellious, feminist text), Dr. Brogan’s new book, A Mind of Your Own is focused on the perspective of – mainly women – who have been misdiagnosed and mistreated under the vast umbrella term called depression.
According to Dr. Brogan,
The fact that one in four American women in the prime of their life is dispensed medication for a mental health condition represents a national crisis. (p.11)
How many of you have gone to your medical doctor with various complaints that do not fall into a specific box or diagnosis and been given a prescription for anxiety or depression? It’s common for medical doctors to use the umbrella term depression when the reality is, they don’t have a clue.
Dr. Brogan has a degree in cognitive neuro-science from MIT, an MD degree from Weill Cornell Medical College and clinical training from the NYU School of Medicine.
I’d say she has credentials!
Dr. Brogan practices psychiatry in New York City without the use of those medications that cause so many other problems. In her own words,
… symptoms of mental illness are not entirely a psychological problem, nor are they purely a neurochemical issue (and, as we’ll see shortly, not a single study has proven that depression is caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain). Depression is merely a symptom, a sign that something is off balance or ill in the body that needs to be remedied. (p.2)
Dr. Brogan has further credentials in what is called perinatal or reproductive psychiatry, a sub-specialty that focuses on the risk-benefit analysis of treating women during their reproductive years, with attention to pregnancy and breast feeding.
This group of women is the most vulnerable to the effects of the traditional medications, (for any health problem and more so for psychiatric medication) yet are commonly the recipients of these drugs.
According to Dr. Brogan, you can achieve radical wellness when you take a look at the root cause of illness. That approach is the functional medicine approach that chiropractors, naturopaths and nutritionists have been taking for years. We’ve been disparaged and diminished for this approach by mainstream medicine and accused of not being science based.
Yet, according to Dr. Brogan, the entire field of psychiatry is based on little to no science. It’s been a history of abuse – psychiatric patients have been and still are shut away, lobotomized, electrified and comatized with drugs.
But all that treatment does nothing to address the underlying cause of the symptoms.
According to Dr. Brogan,
We owe most of our mental illnesses – including their kissing cousins such as chronic worry, fogginess and crankiness – to lifestyle factors and undiagnosed physiological conditions that develop in places far from the brain such as the gut and thyroid. (p.3)
So when people ask me about why we’re suffering from what appears to be an epidemic of depression despite the number of people taking antidepressants, I don’t think about brain chemistry. I turn to the impact of our sedentary lifestyles, processed food diets, and unrelenting stress. (p.23)
She explores the connections between gut health, brain health and hormonal health and explains how the body is all connected. She proves, based on the very science that most medical doctors are NOT reading, that depression is mainly a result of chronic inflammation – the same cause as most modern chronic diseases.
Dr. Brogan’s Treatment Plan for Whole Body Wellness
Dr. Brogan goes over her treatment plan – which, of course, would be individualized for each and every person. And of course, food is the first aspect to be addressed.
Some of the basic concepts involve nourishing and nurturing your microbiome, since we have outsourced so many important functions to the bacteria in our gut. This involves removing offending foods and substances, such as all the processed foods, sugar, grains and bad fats that our food industry and government loves to push on the American people.
In fact, Dr. Brogan was a vegetarian until she recognized that she could not get all her nutrition from food if there were no animal products included in the diet. Here, she talks about Dr. Weston Price and summarizes the four main points he gleaned from his travel around the world studying the diets of indigenous populations untouched by modern foods (in the early 1900’s that was only 5 items; processed vegetable oils, refined flour, refined sugar, refined salt, and condensed milk).
In this section of the book, Dr. Brogan goes over other critical aspects of improving health and reducing exposure to toxins by emphasizing the importance of good sleep, the use of meditation and exercise to improve health and mood as well as cleaning house to remove toxic products. There is also a section on testing and supplements that you could do on your own (without needing a physician).
I particularly loved the instructions for left-nostril breathing – a practice from kundalini yoga.
Left-nostril breathing activates the ida nerve ending in the nostril, which relates to calmness and relaxation. This kind of breathing is associated with the moon energy, which is changeable, feminine, yin, giving and cooling…
Sit comfortably crossed-legged with a straight spine… Close your right nostril with your right thumb while your other fingers are stretched straight up as antennas. You left hand can rest on your left knee. Close your eyes and concentrate at the space between your eyebrows, which is referred to as the third eye. Begin to breathe long and deep only through your left nostril. Continue for three minutes.
I felt more focused and relaxed just from a few minutes of this! Try it!
Finally, in the book there is a 30 day Action Plan that shows you exactly how to implement all this information.
Own Your Body and Free Your Mind
Own Your Body and Free Your Mind are Dr. Brogan’s parting words and words that hit home for me and can surely hit home for you.
Here again, I’m compelled to use her words as they are so powerful.
In today’s health climate, a failure to challenge industry, government and media claims can lead you and your family down a lonely road of remorse, heartache and financial ruin… Begin to tap into all that is beyond the grasp of allopathic medicine. Take it back and rise up with a new kind of feminism – one with women banding together, talking to one another, trusting in their guts, and building a model of health that is so compelling that the current model will soon be revealed for its transparent agenda, missteps, and offenses. This is where your power lies. Once you taste it, the world will know, and there will be no stopping you. (p.277)