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Our guest for the week is Hyla Cass, an integrative psychiatrist practiced in the field even before the term was coined. Her 25-year long practice is marked by the non-drug, natural system boosting approach, which landed her the nation-wide acclaim along with numerous awards. She is here to talk to us about the subversive effects of medications, the systems approach to medicine, as well as about enhancing our cognitive performance.

Side-effect Are Still Effects

Stuffing oneself with medication rarely comes without the so-called side-effects. What is important to realize, however, is that the ‘side-effects’ are actually the ‘effects’ of a medication; they are a part of the whole bodily response to, or indeed against, that medication.

The purple pill for instance, one of the proton-pump inhibitors, is a fairly available drug that may, in a long run, because the system adjusts and later craves for its usage, cause many hitherto unforeseen and avoidable microbiome problems. Therefore, Instead of forcing the system and suppressing it into an unnatural submission, much more profound effects can be achieved by letting the brain and body work out the problem by themselves.

“the medications upset homeostasis of the brain and can cause more problems than they solve” 

Take a Pill VS. The Systems Approach

Medications are not necessarily bad, but overprescribing them certainly is. Write off a patient with a simple prescription has become the expected doctoral practice nowadays. Much better than the simple pill approach is to, when treating a person, take the whole system into account and boost is. Taking both internal and external factors into consideration, the systems approach goal is to give the body the best possible chance to overcome an issue by itself, mobilizing its own natural resources.

Take trauma for instance; any trauma related disorder can be likened to a program that runs in the back of one’s mind, essentially affecting everything. Taking a pill would solve nothing; we need to clear up the underlying program first before treating an issue. 


“We need to respect what the individual biochemistry is doing @hylacassmd”

Endless Charts and Diagrams

Today’s medicine falls into a trap of overcharting the treatment process, neglecting the individuality of each case. Everything is subdued to sort of a medicinal syllogism; a symptom is always followed by a prescribed treatment route which in effect negates the fact that every case is, just as people are, different.

The situation is not all that new, it became effective with the branching specialization of medicine, and can be solved by, while of course keeping the specialist medicine, returning to a more holistic approach to treatment.

Empowering Your Brain

Another field of practice for Dr. Cass that perfectly fits into the systems approach is the cognitive function enhancement. Being the best possible version of ourselves is best achieved through slight, or not so slight lifestyle modifications. Sleep is one factor, diet or exercise another. The exposure to toxins, and the genetic predisposition thereof, may also play a crucial role concerning the quality of life.

Resource Links

Dr. Hyla Cass’ Website

Supplement Your Prescription: What Your Doctor Doesn’t Know About Nutrition Reclaim Your Brain Free Ebook Dr. Cass’s Articles

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