Pearls From the Practice

Lantana and butterfly at Brookside Gardens, Silver Spring, Maryland

Lantana and butterfly at Brookside Gardens, Silver Spring, Maryland

Hello Everyone!

My holistic psychiatry practice is constantly progressing and changing because I am always learning new and helpful ways to improve mental health.  Today I would like to share a story about K. M. and what I learned over the past few weeks about the connection between anxiety and mitochondrial health.

May your week be filled with joy, success, and abundance!


As I opened the door to the waiting room, I saw K. M. sitting alone on the couch--a good sign--on time--another good sign-- with a ready smile on her face.  Three good signs before I even said, "Hi!"  

Just last week, she was sitting there with her mom, who had to drive her to the appointment.  She had been over two hours late, and she greeted me with a look that made me go, "Uh oh!"

Since 2015, K. M. has struggled with panic attacks in spite of taking Prozac and Zoloft under a traditional psychiatrist's care (...and self-medicating with smoking pot daily).  With a holistic psychiatric approach, she has been healing smoothly from her anxiety disorder, getting off her two antidepressants and marijuana since January 2018.  In addition, her hair was growing, her strength was returning, and even her PMS was gone.

By the end of May, she had been able to taper off her Prozac, Zoloft, and marijuana with hardly a blip.  I was pleasantly surprised by the ease of her recovery!  

Just like in Dr. Seuss's book, "I Had Trouble in Getting to Solla Sollew," I was strolling through her healing process enjoying the daisies when troubles suddenly started.  On June 3rd, just before leaving for vacation, K. M. began feeling anxious and started having recurring panic attacks again.  The situation was made even more difficult because she had forgotten to bring her CBD oil, which had been helping her with her marijuana withdrawal.  Insomnia and loss of appetite soon followed.  In addition, K. M. began feeling weak again. 

As Dr. Seuss would say:

"Then NEW troubles came!
From above!
And below!
A Skritz at my neck! 
And a Skrink at my toe!
And now I was really in trouble, you know."

Her symptoms suggested a problem with withdrawal.  But from what?  Although the most obvious cause was SSRI withdrawal, I felt confident that she had been properly supported with serotonin-building supplements.

After some checking, it became clear that K. M.'s anxiety was due to a switch in a supplement, three weeks before, from Liposomal Catalyst to another mitochondrial support supplement (Mito Cell) that didn't have the powerful liposomal delivery system.  DesBio, the company that made Liposomal Catalyst, couldn't find an ingredient it needed, stopped its production, and ran out of it for an entire month!

Within three weeks of stopping Liposomal Catalyst and starting Mito Cell, K. M.'s anxiety symptoms came back despite her taking a lot of other nutritional supports: glandulars, vitamins, minerals--you name it, she had it.  Stopping her CBD oil only aggravated her problem, but her panic symptoms began before she forgot to bring her CBD oil with her on vacation. 

While she was still on vacation, I asked her to work with what she brought with her: liposomal GABA and her other calming supplements.  Unfortunately, they made her feel apathetic, depressed, constipated, and nauseated.  Even smoking pot again didn't decrease her anxiety.  Once K. M. was able to get the Liposomal Catalyst, however, her anxiety resolved and her strength returned.

My experience with K. M. taught me a number of lessons:

  1. Mitochondrial support is central to the healing of anxiety for some patients.  Perhaps especially in those who experience fatigue and weakness along with anxiety and panic attacks.
  2. The liposomal delivery system was a critical factor in delivering the necessary nutritional support to the patient.
  3. The importance of not giving up on the holistic approach when patients suddenly relapse or worsen.  Rather, it is important to find the underlying cause and remedy it.  In this situation, the diagnostic techniques I learned in energy medicine were extremely helpful in supporting K. M.'s healing process and quickly finding the root cause.

K. M.'s rapid recovery without the need to go back to the use of SSRIs made all of us happy.  During the three weeks when she was restabilizing, K. M. felt some pressure from some individuals to "get back on her meds!" 

To press forward with the holistic tools, have faith in her ability to heal, and see her health return felt like a real victory for holistic medicine!