By Walter Last

Schizophrenia – Mania – Depression – Paranoia – Neurosis

Serious mental diseases are much more common than generally suspected. Up to 3% of the population may develop schizophrenia and another 1% manic depressive psychosis. In addition, there is a widespread incidence of serious depression, anxiety neuroses, paranoia and dementias. It has been estimated that about 10% of Australians require institutionalised psychiatric treatment at some time during their lives.

In conventional medicine and psychiatry there is no real understanding about the causes of mental diseases, and the commonly used treatments with sedatives, stimulants, electro-shock and psychotherapy are purely symptomatic and of limited value.

In contrast, natural medicine offers important insights into these conditions, and is usually able to offer genuine help. As a general rule, the two main influences on the development of mental diseases are nutrition and stress, in particular emotional stress. In most cases there are combinations of different nutritional factors and varying amounts of stress.

However, in general the nutritional factor has the more decisive influence. On a high-quality diet and without any allergies or vitamin, mineral and enzyme deficiencies, we are able to regard even serious problems in our lives as challenges, which help us to grow mentally and emotionally. On a poor diet, on the other hand, even minor problems can become insurmountable obstacles and cause extraordinary stress. With correct nutrition it will be so much easier to overcome the remaining non-nutritional factors.


The two most basic requirements for the normal operation of our brain are a sufficient energy supply and an optimal presence of biochemicals involved in transmitting messages.

The most common brain fuel is glucose, but in addition also the amino acid glutamine can be used. Furthermore, the brain uses a massive 20% of the total oxygen supply of the body. This demonstrates the importance of having a good blood circulation to the brain as well as efficient free-radical protection, both of which which may be severely impaired in many cases of dementia and depression. Energy production inside the brain cells, as in other cells, can be disrupted in two fundamental ways: either the breakdown of glucose is too fast as in ‘fast oxidisers’ or hypoglycemics, or it is too slow as in ‘slow oxidisers’.

If hypoglycemics eat fast digesting food, such as sweet food and fruit, their blood glucose level rises too high initially, but then too much insulin is released and excessive amounts of glucose rush into cells. Cells cannot store glucose and must try to process it. Usually a deficiency of oxygen and oxygenating enzymes develops and much of the glucose is only partially metabolised in an anaerobic way (without the use of oxygen) to form lactic acid.

High lactic acid levels have been shown to trigger anxiety attacks and all kinds of phobias in susceptible individuals. In addition, an excessive amount of otherwise normal metabolic acids, such as citric acid may be formed and contributes to make the body overacid.

Nevertheless, during the period of elevated blood glucose a surplus of energy may be generated in the brain and this can lead to mental agitation and irritation. In children hyperactivity is likely to result, and in adolescents the outcome may be violence. In mentally unstable individuals it may trigger a manic episode that is a period of great, uncontrollable excitement. When the burst of energy has past, there is a lack of energy and this may lead to a lethargic, listless or depressed condition. This may be the case with fast-cycling manic-depressive or bipolar disease.

With slow oxidisers, glucose enters the cells too slowly; also energy production inside the cells may be obstructed. Brain cells do not need insulin as muscle cells do for glucose to enter. Therefore, an insufficient supply of glucose to the brain is mainly due to a heavy diet high in meat and fat and low in carbohydrates. With elderly individuals this may be in addition to an impaired blood circulation to the brain.

A variety of B vitamins and minerals are required to convert glucose and glutamine into brain energy. These are mainly the vitamins B1, B2, B6, nicotinamide, pantothenic acid and the minerals magnesium, manganese and zinc. If any of these are deficient, the brain cannot produce sufficient energy and periods of lethargy, stupor and depression may result.

The state of excitement following sweet food intake by fast oxidisers is usually short lived and within hours may swing to depression and back to excitement after another intake of sweet food. On the other hand the energy deprivation caused when slow oxidisers eat predominantly heavy food may last for months and years.

However, both conditions, in combination with hidden allergies and vitamin, mineral and enzyme deficiencies may produce a wide range of abnormal or exaggerated mental conditions, such as paranoia, delusions and phobias. In such cases it is not always apparent if the metabolism is fast, slow or normal. Therefore, an important step in healing mental disorders is to determine the state of the metabolism.

Histamine Levels

The most prominent distinguishing feature is usually the level of histamine in the blood. Fast oxidisers are overacid. This liberates histamine, which may be bound to proteins, and histamine levels rise. The result is a very sensitive skin, which reacts strongly to insect bites and irritants such as wool, chemicals, nylon and some other synthetics. The blood pressure is usually low, less than 120/80, and hands and feet are cold in cool weather. Inflammations and sunburns from sunbathing are common, and pain generally is felt strongly.

Slow oxidisers, on the other hand, usually are too alkaline due to their deficiency in metabolic acids, and this causes histamine levels to be too low. Therefore, the blood pressure is elevated, usually above 120/80, and the skin is rather insensitive to cold, insect bites and irritants. Inflammations are uncommon and not much pain is felt.

If conditions, mainly sensitivity to cold, skin irritants and pain, are normal then the metabolism is probably balanced. With this, we have the first important step in healing mental illness: select a diet according to metabolic requirements. Fast oxidisers must use slow-digesting food; slow oxidisers use fast digesting food, and balanced oxidisers select normally digesting food. Slow-digesting foods are mainly protein and fat or oil rich foods while fruits are the main fast-digesting food.


Allergies, mostly in the form of food allergies, are most obvious in fast oxidisers, but may be present in all types. Hidden allergies may lead to prolonged periods of brain irritation and, with this, to periods of uncontrollable excitement, anger, thought dissociation and all kinds of mental abnormalities.

Manic periods may last for months at a time or even become chronic. Sometimes, after weeks or months the body adapts to this continuing allergic irritation through hormonal changes and the inflammation response, which caused the irritation, disappears, sometimes permanently, at other times only temporarily.

In one case of mental illness the skull had been opened and an inflammatory swelling of the brain tissue after ingesting wheat could be observed. Wheat products and gluten grains in general are most frequently linked to the development of schizophrenia. Allergies in mental diseases are also common to cows’ milk products as well as to unbiological chemicals in our foods, such as artificial colours, flavours, preservatives, pesticide residues etc.

Many of these food additives are classed as Excitotoxins. These are taste or flavor enhancers that release glutamic acid or glutamate. Also aspartic acid and cysteine are brain-active amino acids. The best-known example of an excitotoxin is MSG or mono-sodium glutamate, a salt of glutamic acid. High blood levels can cross the normally protective blood-brain barrier. Glutamate is a neurotransmitter that is present in the extra-cellular fluid only in very low concentration. If levels are inappropriately raised then neurons fire abnormally, and at higher levels brain cells begin to die. Oxygen deficiency and lack of fuel (hypoglycemia) both interfere with the energy production of brain cells to make them susceptible to damage by these excitotoxins. This may be an important factor in the  development of neurological diseases and especially in overactive or manic conditions.

Excitory amino acids cause problems mainly when they are used either in high concentrations or in free form while bound, as in most natural foods, they are slowly released and therefore harmless. Most processed foods contain excitotoxins, especially if any kind of commercial taste or flavor enhancers has been added, such as hydrolyzed vegetable protein, soy protein extract, yeast extract, beef stock and caseinate; commercial soups, sauces and gravies are usually most affected. On the label any of these products may just be called ‘natural flavoring’. Aged proteins, processed meat, cheeses and tomato puree have higher levels of free glutamate as well but fresh tomatoes are fine. All of these should be avoided by sensitive individuals who are prone to overactive mental conditions.

In addition, if the intestinal wall has been damaged by a high gluten intake, by local inflammations due to Candida, food allergy, and also by the frequent use of aspirin and similar drugs, then bacterial and fungal breakdown products from the normal intestinal flora may be absorbed. It has been shown that specific protein fragments (peptides) from wheat, cows’ milk and bacterial decomposition products have a special effect on the chemistry of the brain and cause a so-called cerebral allergy. This may then express itself in a wide range of mental and emotional disorders.

Some environmental allergists claim that over 90% of schizophrenics treated by them have allergies on average to about ten different foods each. However, the most frequent type of schizophrenics with low histamine levels is rather insensitive to conventional allergy testing, and only a strict elimination diet will bring results. Actually, there are reports from varying sources claiming that most schizophrenics became symptom-free during a water fast of about one week. Therefore, rule number two: test for sensitivities and allergies to foods and chemicals, see Allergy TestingTo read Walter’s entire article please go to: For even more information on Allergy and Biocompatible Food & Product Testing to to Nutritionist, Barbara Bourke’s website

Anxiety and Depression

By Judie Barbour Clinical Hypnotherapist

As a clinical hypnotherapist, EFT (Tapping) Practitioner and Bach Flower Practitioner, I encounter clients with anxiety and/or depression on a daily basis.

Today, anxiety and depression are two of the most common mental health concerns.

Anxiety and depression are not the same, but they often occur together. It is not uncommon for people with depression to experience anxiety and people with anxiety to become depressed.

Anxiety and depression can be triggered by a variety of factors. Some of these may include nutrition, psychological, physical, environmental, emotional, social, and spiritual factors, as well as genetic predispositions or brain disease.

Depression is a common disorder, affecting over 350 million people worldwide.

Depression is typically characterized by low energy and moods, low self-esteem, and loss of interest or pleasure in normally enjoyable activities. Some symptoms may include:

  • Sleep disorders (too much or too little)
  • Changes in appetite and weight (too much or too little)
  • Irritability or anxiety
  • Chronic physical symptoms, including pain, upset stomach and headaches
  • Loss of energy and fatigue
  • Feelings of persistent sadness, guilt, hopelessness, or loss of self-worth
  • Thinking difficulties, such as memory loss, challenges concentrating or making decisions
  • Thoughts of death or suicide

Anxiety may be a normal reaction to stress.  Sometimes it can be a sign that we need to address certain issues in our lives.

Anxiety may be characterized by emotional, physical, and behavioral symptoms.  The worry may be accompanied by physical symptoms, especially fatigue, headaches/migraines, muscle tension, muscle aches, difficulty swallowing, trembling, twitching, irritability, sweating, and hot flashes. Emotional symptoms include fear, racing thoughts, and a feeling of impending doom. People suffering from anxiety often withdraw and seek to avoid people or certain places. Remember: Our thoughts and our words create our reality … so be minful of what you say and think. Positive thoughts generate positive feelings and attract positive life experiences.

Panic attacks are more common than you think

By Guest Writer Jenetta Haim

Emotional health is very important to your wellbeing. Panic attacks are quite common in today’s society, in fact, one in three people have experienced a panic attack at some stage in their life. There is much confusion though regarding them and perhaps a little hesitation with people admitting to experiencing a panic attack as we tend to push emotional issues aside. However panic attacks are treatable and curable with natural therapies and proper counseling. It may take a little while but once you learn techniques to handle them and undo the underlying pattern and overwhelm that caused them in the first place they may never occur again.

Have you ever had a meeting to go to, walked into a crowded room and all of a sudden your heart starts pounding, you begin to sweat and shake a little, your breath seems a little shallower and short, you feel a bit queasy and feel like you could faint? That could be a panic attack. Other symptoms may include feeling out of control and even sometimes terror.

What is a panic attack really though?  Anyone that has ever even remotely come close to one will be able to tell you. They usually occur unexpectedly and can be set off by minor incidents. Millions are affected and there are many natural things you can do to avert them.

One in three people have a panic attack at some time. Remember fear is a normal response that is programmed into us and is the way we react when we do not feel safe. There can be many reasons for this – anxieties regarding money, exams, career, relationships, time pressures etc. Stress is often a major cause however panic attacks can also occur due to phobias such as fear of open spaces, obsessive compulsive disorder etc.

So what do you do when you get a panic attack? The shallow breathing when you panic disrupts the balance of gas so too much carbon dioxide is exhaled which means you don’t get enough oxygen. This makes you breathe even faster. One remedy is to hold a paper bag (not plastic – ever) over your nose and mouth and re breathe the air from inside the bag.

It is important that you learn to relax more and not let the overwhelm of your lifestyle get to you. The constant rushing and lack of holidays, exacerbates the causes so learn to take frequent breaks, proper holidays of at least 7-10 days and make your home environment one of calm. Meditation is a worthwhile skill as it will teach you how to control your breathing and visualise in order to calm down. If you tend to do a lot of head talk then use that to your advantage as positive self talk to boost your confidence and visualise good outcomes and success regarding the issues in your life.

Exercise is a great pursuit to get the endorphins moving and yoga is great to balance your energy. Watching what you eat can also assist as certain foods have different effects on the body such as lettuce can be soothing and drinks such as tea, coffee and some soft drinks have too much caffeine which will only increase your tension. Remember alcohol is also a depressant.

Good foods are whole foods with plenty of raw fruit and vegetables and some protein (lean meat, fish, beans and pulses) and to eat less saturated fat and refined carbohydrate (white sugar and flour). Take Vitamin B complex (for stress), C, E and zinc, magnesium and calcium and try not to skip meals because it can cause low blood sugar which will only add to your anxiety.

St John’s Wort (Hypericum) is a good natural remedy for anxiety, However, it cannot be taken with some medications so check with your doctor. Also Valerian root, Chamomile, Oats, Hops, Skullcap, Lime flowers, Passiflora and Lemon Balm are good herbal teas as nerve tonics and to promote calm sleep. Another natural remedy is a few drops of Bach Rescue Remedy or aromatherapy oil specially prepared for you. Put a few drops of the aromatherapy oil on a tissueor sniff straight from the bottle. The rest can be put into a burner, in your office if the layout permits or in your home.

Gelsemium or Argentum Nitricum are good homeopathic remedies for specific fearful events, Aconite or Arsenicum Album for long term anxiety leading to unpredictable attacks however it is best to see a qualified natural therapist to assist you into which remedies suit you best.

Top of the list is to tackle the physical sensations such as the fast heartbeat and over breathing, the bad feelings of a catastrophe about to happen and the need to avoid situations that may trigger these attacks. It may be helpful to keep a diary of when symptoms occur to try to pinpoint what prompts the attack (e.g. could be low blood sugar). Write how you feel at the time and for how long.

Here are some quick tips on how to avoid panic attacks.

- Reduce stress

- Think positively – don’t expect attacks to come

- Eat well

- Get enough sleep

- Practice relaxation daily

- Exercise regularly

- Ask for help

- Avoid alcohol, cigarettes and caffeine

- Only use tranquillisers on a short term basis

- Don’t avoid situations that have caused past attacks in the past. Be brave – you can do it!

Remember to attend to panic attacks as soon as possible and to see a qualified natural therapist to assist and  support you. Surfing the internet and buying products ad hoc from the health food store may not be in your best interests as everyone is different and you need someone dedicated to help you overcome this issue.


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By Walter Last

Pyroluria is a common metabolic condition in which pyrrole, a key component of haemoglobin, is overproduced in the liver. The surplus binds to vitamin B6 and zinc and is excreted in the urine. This creates severe deficiencies in B6 and zinc and to a lesser degree in some other nutrients, such as niacinamide, gamma linolenic acid (GLA), biotin, and sometimes manganese, also other B-vitamins may be low.

Depending on conditions, this may be a leading cause not only of Type 1 diabetes but also of most mental-emotional problems. The main cause of pyroluria appears to be intestinal dysbiosis with overgrowth of Candida, pleomorphic (shape-changing) microbes in the blood, and possibly Lyme disease, which may invade the liver and affect its functions. Due to the overuse of antibiotics and other drugs presently the original cause tends to be the fungal form of Candida, often in combination with related microbes. These are able to change the genetic material in liver cells so that this condition can then be inherited and often runs in families.

The more serious conditions commonly arise from an uncontrolled Candida problem coming on top of inherited pyroluria. Candida toxins absorbed mainly from the intestines (e.g. acetaldehyde, tartaric acid, and arabinose, an abnormal 5-carbon sugar, disable mainly the energy production in brain and muscles, thereby re-enforcing similar problems caused by the vitamin B6 and zinc deficiency caused by pyroluria. This partnership between inherited pyroluria and acquired Candida problems in combination with Leaky Gut Syndrome underlies most of our modern diseases.

The resulting vitamin and mineral deficiencies may initially require a high intake of these vitamins, although biotin can be obtained from egg yolk, while gamma linolenic acid is highest in spirulina. With pyroluria the liver often cannot convert normal vitamin B6 or pyridoxine into the activated form Pyridoxal-5-Phosphate or P5P which should then be supplemented.

The following includes the most common symptoms associated with Pyroluria. Not all of these are present in everyone with pyroluria. If there is poor dream recall which does not greatly improve by taking 50mg or more of vitamin B6 as pyridoxine, then I would strongly suspect pyroluria, and supplement with P5P and high doses of zinc, especially if also several other of the listed symptoms are present. Start with 50mg of P5P and 30 – 40mg of zinc  – half a crushed or chewed up tablet of each at the start of breakfast and lunch.

Gradually over several weeks increase both P5P and zinc to an optimal dose at which most symptoms start improving or disappear. In mild conditions this my be almost immediately even with the initial dose, in severe cases much higher doses may be needed for several month before good progress is made. Initially too much P5P may cause overstimulation or bouts of overactivity in children, and difficulty falling asleep, especially if taken in the evening. Also cleansing reactions may occur, temporarily causing skin problems.

In addition to providing missing nutrients also focus on intestinal sanitation, anti-Candida therapy, and cleansing and activating the liver. All problems are much worse if there is in addition mercury toxicity. Even without pyroluria body builders prefer P5P because of its superior qualities in building muscles. The FDA has been petitioned by a drug company to ban the sale of P5P as it did previously with another form of vitamin B6, pyridoxamine.  Health agencies in other countries may follow. Therefore it may be prudent to stock up on it. Individuals with serious pyroluria may need it for the rest of their lives.


1. Poor dream recall (vitamin B6 deficiency)

2. White spots on finger nails (zinc deficiency)

3. Morning nausea, poor morning appetite, tendency to skip breakfast

4. Type 1 diabetes, epilepsy (B6 and zinc deficiency)

5. Pale skin, poor tanning, burns easily in the sun

6. Sensitivity to bright light (vitamin B2 deficiency)

7. Hypersensitive to loud noises (magnesium deficiency)

8. Reading difficulties (e.g. dyslexia)

9. Poor ability to cope with stress (vitamin B5 helps)

10. Mood swings or temper outbursts

11. Histrionic (dramatic) tendency

12. Argumentative, enjoys argumenting

13. New situations or changes in routine are stressful (i.e. travelling)

14. Much higher capability and alertness in the evening than in the morning

15. Poor short term memory, dementia

16. Abnormal body fat distribution

17. Rheumatoid arthritis (also needs boron/borax)

18. Dry or aging skin

19. Anxiousness or shyness

20. Reaching puberty later than normal

21. Difficulty digesting, especially proteins

22. Tendency toward being a loner or avoiding larger groups of people

23. Stretch marks on skin (zinc deficiency)

24. Poor sense of smell or taste (zinc deficiency)

25. Feel uncomfortable with strangers

26. Frequently experience fatigue, low energy

27. Tendency to overreact to tranquilizers, barbiturates, alcohol or other drugs

28. A tendency toward anaemia and allergies

29. History of mental illness, addictions or alcoholism in family

30. Easily upset by criticism

31. Sweet or fruity smell of breath or sweat when ill or stressed

32. Prone to acne, eczema or psoriasis

33. Tendency toward feeling anxious, fearful, lifelong inner tension

34. Difficulty recalling past events or people

35. Bouts of depression or nervous exhaustion

36. Prone to frequent colds or infections

37. Sun sensitivity and burns easily

38. Paresthesia (tingly sensations mainly in the extremities)

39. Poor muscle development and poor connective tissue

40. Eye, pancreas and liver problems

41. Thyroid, parathyroid and adrenal problems

42. Mental diseases and emotional problems

43. Hormonal imbalances, low enzyme activity

44. Cold hands and feet, Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

45. Problems with fingers and hands (B6 deficiency)

46. Symptoms of Candida

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