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Barbara Hoffman

Barbara Hoffman


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Are you depressed? Are you rebelling against taking anti-depressants? Tune In! Also, we discuss hair loss in women as well as hair growing on our chins! Top Reasons To Get Off Synthetic Hormones! And MORE of your personal questions! LET'S TALK HORMONES!


0:04 Barbara Hoffman

Hello everybody. This is Barbara Hoffman. I'm here to talk to you today about hormones and hope for hormones, and specifically today, we are going to talk about depressing stage of life. Are you depressed? Are you tired of taking antidepressants? Do you wonder am I really depressed? Is this really the solution for me? We'll talk about some things and scenarios that might apply to you and I hope that I can help you. I really deeply relate to this topic. I talked to so many women all over the United States and actually over the world, and depression in women has become almost epidemic, and I don't understand why this has happened that you've all ended up on very heavy-duty antidepressant drugs. As a matter of fact, there is one called Effexor and it is a $2.66-billion industry in the United States alone and that is in 2008. So, I know now in 2010, it's worse. And you know, what I want to say is sometimes we're depressed because we have a legitimate reason to be depressed. Our child has been in an accident, we've lost our job, our house has been for closure, a divorce, finances. Sometimes women will get very depressed when their children have left for college. And if you have a reason that you are depressed and you specifically know this is why I'm depressed, then probably a short-term use of antidepressants would be good for you or possibly you can realize that this is going to pass and maybe I don't need to go on a drug that's going to cause me significant side effects. So, that's a decision for you to make.

2:05 Barbara Hoffman

A lot of depression in women over the age of 20 is hormonal and it's short term if we can treat the hormones. Okay. Mild depressive symptoms ebb and flow. Major depressive symptoms spiral downward. You keep going down, down, down. There is never any ebb. You are never having a glimmer of light and you can get suicidal thoughts, and for those people, yes, we definitely want to talk about -- you want to think about staying on the drugs that your doctor has given you. I do wanna tell you that I saw something very poignant about three months ago. I saw former politician of George Bush's administration, Karl Rove. He was on a major talk show and he was talking about his mother and his mother committed suicide when she was in her 40s. And the interviewer said, "Well, Karl what do you think happened?" And he looked at the interviewer and he said, "I don't know. I think she just didn't have any hope." And you know that's the name of my show, "Hope For Your Hormones," and I got very teared up over that because I'm thinking she was young, she was in her 40s, what if that was hormonal and could have been helped and we could have turned that around. So, that's just something in my mind today. I wanna help any of you that possibly are just in a depression because your hormones are low. Your serotonin levels are low. And you know, there are a lot of organic factors for depression. Prescription drug can cause you to be depressed, men and women. We can talk about the men too here today. Hormones can cause you to be depressed. Hormonal imbalance.

4:00 Barbara Hoffman

Environmental influences can cause depression. Now, you are not alone if you're suffering from depression, but that's one of the isolating factors if you think you are alone, but you're not. The World Health Organization estimates that 5% to 10% of the entire population is depressed at any given moment. So, the moment now that you're depressed, 10% of the rest of the people in the world are also going through that depression. Does that mean we all need to be on a potent antidepressant drug or does it mean that maybe the environmental toxins are affecting us in the way we eat and our stress that is affecting us? So, that's something to think about as we go forth today. I also did say that I was going to talk about hair loss, and if I don't get to that, then we will do that next week, but I'm going to seriously try to get to that, okay, because I wanna help you with that too. That's actually an issue that causes depression in a lot of people. So, I hope we have time. Okay. I'm talking slower now because my staff told me I talk a little bit too fast and so I'm trying to be measured, but I do have a lot of information. So, listen, there are some really, really popular drugs out for depression and I know how many of you are on them. And I told you about the Effexor and the billions and billions of dollars that are being spent on that, but listen to this. Here how it works with you, women in particular. You don't feel right, something is off, I don't have my joy for life, I feel that I get up in the morning, I don't feel like even facing the day, every little thing bothers me, I'm crying at the drop of the hat. I know that these are the symptoms you're going through and listen to this.

5:53 Barbara Hoffman

My sister, who has turned 50, she called me and she had her story. She said, "Barb I just can't get going anymore. I just lost it. I think I'm just getting old and I'm tired." You know, she is 50 years old. She is a baby in God's eyes. Anyway, I said, "Cath, we need to get your hormones adjusted." She said, "Oh, how do I do that?" Well, she had been listening to me for the past 20 years so I had to explain to her again how we were going to get those hormones balanced. Well, off she went to a doctor. She made an appointment and she told them she was depressed and she thought it was her hormones. She called me up when she came home, and guess what, she was given a choice of Effexor or Lexapro. And I said, "Well, you're throwing those away, right?" She said, "Oh, no! I went to the drug store and I filled them." So, this is the power of the medical community when they get a woman in front of them who's depressed, not feeling right, crying. They wanna fix it. I don't want to say anything bad about the doctors. They wanna help you, but that's the first line of defense, to give them the antidepressant. So, off she went. She took them for a year. She was in New York, I'm in California, and I'm putting cold compresses on my head that my sister is on antidepressants for what I believe is hormones. Eventually, she got tired of them, said she felt like a zombie, making her tired all the time. We got her on bioidentical hormones and she got turned around. So that's something that possibly could be happening to you. So, we'll talk about that. I also want to tell you that we need to think in terms of do antidepressant drugs really work? Now, there are a lot of studies that have been done that show that antidepressant drugs are no better than a placebo, but here how it works. To get your drug approved by the FDA, you have to have two studies that show your drug was more effective than a placebo. You need two studies.

8:00 Barbara Hoffman

Okay, so when they were testing antidepressants, there were 10 clinical trials, for instance for one specific one, which I won't mention. There were 10 clinical trials. In eight of the trials, the drug did not show itself to be better than a placebo. It did not. The placebo was just as good as the drug. But in two of the trials, it showed the drug worked better. However, in those two trials, they only used severely clinically depressed people with suicidal thoughts and only tested 200 people. But those two trials showed that yes, in severely clinically depressed people, the drug worked. They brought those two trials into the FDA. The drug gets approved. So, going on from there, in a very detailed analysis published in a British medical journal, the efficacy of antidepressants in adults, the experts concluded that the drugs did not have a clinically meaningful advantage over the placebo. So, the reason I'm telling you this is there is hope for those of you who have tuned in today or listening now saying, "I don't wanna be on the drugs, but I guess they're the only things sort of work for me." That's why I'm telling you this, not to interfere with anything in the business world would be pharmaceutical companies, but there is hope that other things will work better. Now, here's what we discovered with people who are depressed. They have low levels of serotonin, and if you have low levels of serotonin, you can be depressed, impatient, impulsive, short attention span, craving sweets and high carb foods, and insomnia. Okay. So, now, we know you're low in serotonin. So, there is something called SSRI, which is a drug that helps to keep serotonin levels that you already have in your brain active.

10:01 Barbara Hoffman

It recycles them. So, you keep going round and round with the same serotonin that you already have. They don't do anything to raise the serotonin levels, but they do keep your serotonin at somewhat even keel. However, here are the side effects in diminishing order: nausea, headaches, anxiety and nervousness, insomnia, drowsiness, diarrhea, dry mouth, loss of appetite, sweating and tremor, and rash. Now, I didn't tell you the number one side effect because that's not usually told to you when they're given you. The doctors might say, "Well, you might some insomnia. You might have some headaches." But they don't tell you the number one side effect of the antidepressants, and if I could do a drum roll, I would do it because this is big and you'll realize why you're not told it. It's weight gain. Weight gain is the number one side effect and the reason we're not told that is because women would not take it. They would say, "I'd rather be depressed than gain 20 pounds." You all know that. You know, it's just a fact. We would rather be depressed than gain weight that we have no hope to lose. So, anyway, the other side effects I already told you and what I want to say now -- oh by the way the most popular drugs, if you don't know if your drug is an antidepressant, Prozac, Celexa, Paxil, Lexapro, Zoloft, Effexor, Cymbalta, and Wellbutrin. They're the culprits that -- I mean they are the ones. I won't say they're the culprits. They're the choices, okay? But you don't need to boost your serotonin levels with a drug if the reason you're depressed is low serotonin levels. You can boost that naturally and I'll tell you how.

11:54 Barbara Hoffman

There is a direct precursor to serotonin that crosses the blood brain barrier and raises your serotonin levels. In other words, it was the equivalent of you could go out into a store, hand over your money and say, "I want serotonin." This is what they would give you, it's called 5-HTP, which is 5-hydroxytryptophan and supplementing with 5-HTP has been shown to produce significant benefits in depression. It is also good, by the way, for weight loss, headaches, and fibromyalgia, and the recommended starting dose is 50 mg one 3 times per day. So, that is possibly your recourse and if you're already on an antidepressant, you can't just add 5-HTP because you can get what we called serotonin poisoning. You get your serotonin too high. That's not good. So, you would have to wean somehow off your antidepressant, but you could definitely ask your doctor about this or call me for more information. If you're not already taking an antidepressant and you're feeling depressed, you can take 5-HTP. Essential fatty acids are proven to help depression. L-theanine is proven to help depression and that's found in green tea. So, you could just sip green tea all day long, and also zinc. Another thing I'd like you to do is try to eliminate sugar in caffeine because those are culprits that make people depressed. And another thing that's very, very good and you probably heard of it because in the 1990s, it was the brightest star on the horizon, it was actually in major magazines as the best thing for depression, it was called St. John's Wort. And in Germany, in 1996, doctors were giving the St. John's Wort out for depression more than Prozac, like eight times more frequently than Prozac, and it was working.

13:58 Barbara Hoffman

And so, in the United States, the big news television program did a show called "St. John's Wort For Depression" and it brought considerable attention to St. John's Wort, but it didn't escape the notice of the drug companies. A lot of ads came out about that time saying that antidepressants work better and little St. John's Wort got pushed to the back of the room. But study comparing St. John's Wort with Zoloft for depression, several double-blinds have shown it's more effective and even for moderate cases of depression. For severe, it might not be strong enough. So, that's a really good one for you. Okay. You've got to be careful discontinuing if you're on an SSRI or one of the drugs I mentioned because discontinuing quickly, you get dizzy, fatigue, tingling, burning, blurred vision, insomnia, and vivid dreams. Now, I always say if the withdrawal from a drug is that powerful, then the drug probably isn't that great for our system, but I'm not here to say that you need to get off your drug, just to give you information and to give you hope. If you're depressed and you're out there listening and saying, "Why, oh, why am I depressed?" You know, depression, as I said, can be hormonal. If you're progesterone levels go low, you can go into depression. Progesterone is the feel-good hormone. Did you ever see a depressed pregnant woman? They walk around glowing like as if they're ___15:32___. I mean, here they are gaining pounds and pounds and pounds. They can't move fast. They've got to go out and buy all new clothes that they really are never gonna be able to wear again. And they're tired sometimes, but they're just being really good because of prolific amounts of progesterone that they're producing. Okay, what else can you do for depression and you could write to me for this information because I want to give it to you.

16:00 Barbara Hoffman

Don't ever underestimate the importance of sleep because sleep helps the body increase melatonin and serotonin. So, if your hormone levels are low and you get good night's sleep, you can naturally raise your levels. Now, I did tell you I was gonna talk about PMS and depression, and I wanna get to that too. Latest studies on PMS said that women's serotonin levels are lower in the two weeks prior to her period. So, now, she is depressed. Now, she is 25 years old and she is depressed and she is going to go in and tell her doctor, "There is something wrong with me." Well, the doctor is going to often prescribe an antidepressant, and as we discussed, those have side effects. Now, you've got a 25-year-old girl who can't sleep, who is gaining weight, who has got dry mouth, and by the way, this is the sad thing, antidepressants that are supposed to make you feel better, bring back your joy, make you live a normal life, one of the huge side effects, which I forgot to mention, is loss of libido. So, now, you're on an antidepressant, you're walking around, not quite feeling yourself, but you're not feeling like you're gonna lie down and die, but you don't have anything to do with your spouse. So, now, where is that gonna take you? Now, that gets you onto another whole sidetrack of reasons to have an unhappy life. So, anyway, let me tell you as we discussed, we need raise serotonin levels in women with PMS and PMS symptoms include unexplained sadness, tearfulness, and loss of interest in their hobbies and enjoyable activities. They can't sleep and they're feeling awful for two weeks, then they get their periods, and bingo, they feel better.

18:02 Barbara Hoffman

So, that tells us it's hormonal and let's fix it. Okay. We want to get you feeling better. We wanna give you the hope. Now, here are a couple of other things for those of you undergoing, "Oh, I just don't think another pill is gonna to help me. You know, I'll get that 5-HTP, but I'm just too far gone." Here are a couple of other things that you can do that we know work. Okay, first of all, I said sleep. Second, you've got to need to manage your stress, alright? So, let's start putting some things to the side that you're doing. Break your large task into small ones, set some priorities, do what you can do, and stop at 4 o'clock in the afternoon, at 3 o'clock in the afternoon, whatever time it is that you set for yourself, you are going to stop because that's now your done time. You're not gonna be working up to 9 o'clock at night, trying to get the laundry done and this mess. You're going to stop and you're going to do something enjoyable. I want you to do some mild exercise, even if you just walk. I mean, I'm a naturopath, I'm supposed to be out there probably with those medicine balls and those free weights and the treadmill, I just walk, and actually, I walk on the slow side. So, let's just get outside and walk. You can go to a movie. One of the most fun times I did, and I actually went through a depression and I don't wanna waste your time talking about mine, but I had something that put me into depression, I went to a ball game. I put on a T-shirt and jeans, a little ball cap, and I went and sat in the stands and cheered on the home team, and I tell you, that was like a tonic. I really felt fantastic after that. The funny thing was, I went on a Saturday, and I live in LA, so it was the Los Angeles Angels, and I went to an Angels' game on Saturday. I came home. I felt so good and excited and happy over that Angels' game that the next day, Sunday, I made my poor husband take me back for another three hours and a half to watch another Angels' game.

20:14 Barbara Hoffman

So, you know, that was spirit uplifting. Okay. How about church? How about a women's group? I joined a book club. I mean that was fun. My assignment was to read. Well, that was fun, to have that as your assignment, and then I went and sat and talked about the book with other ladies and it was inexpensive. I did it at the local center and it was perfect. Okay. Here's another thing. Give it time. Expect your mood to improve gradually. Not immediately. Feeling better takes time. Take the pressure off yourself. Yes! You have my permission. Take the pressure off yourself. Postpone important decisions until the depression has lifted. Don't change ___20:59___ to get married or divorced unless you feel yourself and discuss it with people you know well and who might have an objective view of your situation, okay? And also, that is a good point, support. Women tend to think nothing of taking care of others, but twice before getting support for themselves. But it really helps in dealing with menopausal, perimenopausal, and PMS depression. Because you're at the age where you might still be caring for children, your parents, holding down a job, and trying to do all of these yourself. Find a way to have your needs accommodated by people around you. You shouldn't feel that you have to do everything to everybody, and if you would want a pep talk, you call me. Here's my phone number and I welcome your calls. It's (877) 539-6200, (877) 539-6200, and that includes the men too because I have men call me and I'm telling you, we have some fun.

22:02 Barbara Hoffman

Because we're opposite genders, but there is nothing wrong with sometimes unloading your problems on somebody of the opposite gender and I'm a really good listener and I like to talk too, can you tell? So, just call me. It's my dime on that 877 number, so please call me. Also, we know about diet. Well balanced and sensible is what everybody says, but you know what I'm gonna say, eat what you want, get cut down on the sugar, and by the way, when you're out looking at products in the market, and I said this before, but this is really important, when you pick up the container - I was in the market the other day, I was looking for a new yogurt. I picked up a container, it said "Yellow Greek yogurt," I like Greek yogurt, so I said, "Okay, this is good." I turned it over. It has 16 grams of sugar. Well, some yogurts have 32. So, you might think with 16, "Oh, that's good," but here's the rule, take the grams of sugar, 14 or 16 grams divided by 4, that brings us to the number 4, that's divided by 4 number, that's the teaspoons of sugar that is in the product. So, I might as well put that down, go home, pour out four teaspoons of sugar and eat it. Now, how good does that sound? So, that can help you resist sugar. Give up the sugar. You're gonna feel much better. Okay. And then we talk about spending time with others and getting some support. You know, I used to do crossword puzzles -- not crossword puzzles, jigsaw puzzles. I would get the prettiest puzzle I could get and just sit and work on that. I will take breaks during the day. That's right. I'm supposed to be here working for all of you and doing my research. I will take a 15-minute break and go work on the puzzle, and at the end, I would have this beautiful puzzles, except I don't ever get one that just a snow flake, because I tell you, that was tough. It was all white and blue. Okay. So, here we go. I wanna give you my phone number again, (877) 539-6200.

24:02 Barbara Hoffman

And I'm gonna jump off right of the depression topic, but if you are depressed and you need help, I want you to call me. And I'm going to get on to the hair loss. Now, this is for men and women and it can be stopped. Now, one of the things that is very, very interesting for the men. If you have a man with male pattern baldness and the men's baldness pattern goes in an M, starting from the side of their ear to the top of the head, if you drew an M on their head, that's their pattern. For men, it can be progesterone deficiency, and if we could get some of the young guys that are losing their hair, we could give them progesterone and see how they do. A lot of people would say, "Well, my dad had lost his hair when he was 30 so that means, you know, it's hereditary." Well, maybe your dad had low progesterone too. So, let's look at that, okay? What does progesterone deficiency do? It elevates DHT, dihydroxytestosterone. It's a nasty form of testosterone. It's not good. It causes your prostate to grow and it causes hair loss. The hair will fall out and not come back if you don't do something about it. Okay. Now, I have that people that have rubbed progesterone cream right on their head and had good luck with it. I have a colleague who is working on a formula with progesterone and azelaic acid that he said has been proven to grow hair back in men. Now, there are some products on the market that do work, in fact the Brow Gain, and there is also one called Dr. Proctor's Regrowth product that you rub on your head and that's gonna work as well. DHT, by the way, causes your immune system to react to your own hair follicles as a foreign object.

25:58 Barbara Hoffman

So, now, your immune system is killing your hair follicles. So, the minute you notice that you've got a young man in your life or even your man who's just starting to lose his hair, let's talk about this with the progesterone, okay? With women, they don't get the M shape. They get the hair thinning all over the head. With women, well with men too, these also are interacted, if you're on any kind of prescription drugs or low thyroid or stress, it can cause the hair to fall out. Also with women and with men, cholesterol-lowering drugs can cause your hair to fall out. Chemotherapy, we know. Antidepressants can cause your hair to fall out. Blood pressure meds and blood thinners. When you're going to be given a prescription by a doctor, I urge you all to say, "Doctor does this drug cause hair loss?" Okay? Because I want you to get the honest answer. You won't believe how many people I talk to in a week say, "My hair is falling out," and you know they have been on a certain drug for three years. So, ask your doctor, "Does this drug cause hair loss, and if it does, is there a substitute?" Okay? Now, here are other things to take for your hair. You wanna take essential fatty acids. Those are wonderful. Folic acid can completely reverse hair loss in men. According to my friend, Jim Jamison, whose grandfather invented the Tylenol Gelcap. They are a family of researchers. He said folic acid, folic acid, folic acid. Also, B complex. I love B12 sublingual, for anybody whose hair is falling out, and l-tyrosine strengthens hair. So, if anybody out there has brittle, weak hair, let's do the l-tyrosine. Now, here's the good news, your hair can start to come back in three weeks to four months on this protocol. The other thing I wanna tell you about is get a good herbal stimulating shampoo. If you can't find one, call me. I've got a wonderful one called Chinese Stimulating Shampoo.

28:04 Barbara Hoffman

First of all, the shampoo has a lot of herbs in it. Then, you want to stimulate your scalp. Rub your scalp. Take your fingers and rub, rub, rub, rub, rub on your scalp. I've even had people that get on a board and lower their heads so the blood rushes to their scalp because that stimulates the scalp. Another great thing is dub a white sage tea. I mean, get white sage, make a tea, double strength, rinse your hair with it. Some people use cider vinegar, but I think the white sage works best. Okay, we've come to the end. Of course, I didn't get enough in, but I just wanna tell you I so appreciate your confidence in me, I appreciate your tuning in and listening, and if you have something you want me to talk about in the future, please call me, and if you wanna talk personally, it's (877) 539-6200 or email me, drbarbara@askdrbarbara.com, and also go on my website, bhnformulas.com, if you wanna get some hormone creams to counteract the progesterone deficiency, and you don't have to buy anything from me, just come to me, get the information, go to your health food store. I'm here to inform you and educate you, not to sell you something. If you need something that you can't find, I'll help you out. I do special orders for people all the time. It's my pleasure to be your friend, it's my pleasure to be your radio host, and I look forward to seeing you next week. With our next show, we're gonna talk about anxiety and I think basically probably I'll have time to talk about. You're gonna get back your life back. We're gonna increase your happiness factor and we're going to get you off the counterfeits. God bless you and thank you for listening in.