These findings support the value of further trials of NAC as an adjunct for treating individuals with cocaine dependence Mardikian, LaRowe, Hedden, Kalivas, & Malcolm, 2007. Omega-3 Fatty Acids from Fish Oils In a DBRPC three-month study, 13 substance abusers given 3,000 mg/day of fish oils versus 11 patients given placebo, showed a progressive decrease in anxiety in those given the fish oils Buydens-Branchey & Branchey, 2006. This effect may be related to the fact that ethanol alcohol reduces n-3 PUFAs polyunsaturated fatty acids in nerve cell membrane. The use of omega-3 fatty acids in patients with alcohol abuse warrants further study. S-adenosylmethionine S-adenosylmethionine SAMe has significant potential as a valuable treatment for all stages of alcoholism. Many alcoholics suffer from depression and use alcohol as a selfmedication. While SAMe is an effective antidepressant with few side effects see Post 2 for a discussion of SAMe, unlike prescription antidepressants, it does not put a burden on liver metabolic systems and does not cause elevations of liver enzymes a common side effect of SSRI’s. In fact, SAMe has been shown to improve liver function Hote, Sahoo, Jani, Ghare, Chen et al.
Reduce alcohol-induced liver toxicity through several mechanisms. First, SAMe reduces serum alcohol levels, but does not increase serum acetaldehyde levels. Second, SAMe protects liver mitochondria from damage by alcohol Lieber, 2002. Third, SAMe maintains glutathione the main antioxidant supplies. In a 30-day DBRPC study of 64 alcoholics DSM III with at least a six-year history of alcohol abuse, SAMe 200 mg IM/day significantly improved anxiety, depression, fatigue, anorexia, insomnia, and nausea/vomiting while enhancing treatment compliance and abstinence compared to placebo. Patients given SAMe had lower gamma-GT levels indicator of liver function and lower serum alcohol levels compared to no change in those given placebo. In the SAMe group, 14/28 patients had documented abstinence, compared to 5/27 in the placebo group p0.01 Cibin, Gentile, & Ferri, 1988.
This study showed efficacy at a relatively low dose of SAMe, 200 mg IM, equivalent to 400 mg p. The evidence for SAMe antidepressant and hepatoprotective effects is compelling. Although further studies of oral SAMe in the treatment of alcoholism are needed, the authors believe that the evidence base is sufficient to justify the use of SAMe in the treatment of depression, anxiety, and hepatic dysfunction in alcoholics. Studies of hepatic stellate cells found that the antifibrinogenic properties of SAMe combined with dilinoleoylphosphatidylcholine DLPC may be explained by the inhibition of collagen producing mRNA and the prevention of the leptin-stimulated tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase TIMP-1 production. In addition, SAMe blocked the generation of H2O2 a tissue damaging free radical and restored the reduced glutathione GSH major tissue protecting antioxidant levels Cao, Mak, & Lieber, 2006. Ethanol alcohol decreases SAMe synthesis and reduces intracellular SAMe levels. Ethanol also reduces the enzymatic activity of methionine adenosyltransferase MAT II see Post 2, Figure 2.1.
MAT II catalyzes the synthesis of SAMe, which is vital for the activation and proliferation of T helper CD4+ lymphocytes. Ethanol impairs immune function by decreasing MAT II and SAMe Akhondzadeh, Kashani, Mobaseri, Hosseini, Nikzad, & Khani, 2001. The reduction in SAMe and MAT II may have additional adverse effects on mood and cognitive function. Supplementation with oral SAMe can reverse these deficits. Supplementation with SAMe may improve mood as well as cognitive, hepatic, and immune function in individuals who abuse alcohol. The decline in dopamine and SAMe levels induced by methamphetamine in rat studies may underlie the damage to brain functions Cooney, Wise, Poirier, & Ali, 1998. Although the use of SAMe in the treatment of methamphetamine addiction is not yet supported by clinical studies, based on this preclinical data and considering the low level of risks and the numerous known health benefits, Dr. Richard Brown has used SAMe in methamphetamine addicts who do not have bipolar disorder to accelerate recovery as part of a holistic approach.
Yoga to boost immunity for Rudy, eds. Drugs, Alcohol, and Social Problems. Lanham, MD Rowman & Littlefield, World Health Organization. Global Strategy to Reduce the Harmful Use of Alcohol. Geneva, World Health Organization, Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse. Yoga to boost immunity photos, Yoga to boost immunity 2016.
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