Alternative Medications More Effective For Bipolar Condition Than Commercially-Available Drugs?

Although it is common knowledge than bipolar disease can take a severe toll on its victims, the traditional medications prescribed to help ease the symptoms of the condition may not be as effective as alternative remedies.

Affecting as many as 5.7 million adults in the United States alone, bipolar disease can cause a number of debilitating symptoms, ranging from severe depression to alternating manic episodes. In more extreme cases, the person afflicted may even be driven to suicide.

The effects of the condition extend beyond the primary victim as well, placing a significant burden on finances and causing intense strain and pressure on entire families. Worse still, the condition is often misdiagnosed and even undetected, until the patient has already gone through prolonged periods of mental anguish.
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As with most other health conditions that severely affect people’s lives, the medical establishment (represented by the large drug companies) is actively pushing certain medications as being the only real hope for continued relief from bipolar disease. The reality however is that many of these medications involve side effects that can be just as debilitating and disruptive to the health and well-being of the patient. As it turns out, the answer may not lie in pharmaceutical drugs at all, but on natural remedies.

Proponents of alternative treatment for bipolar disease tend to shift focus away from pharmaceutical drugs, and instead espouse a treatment program based on lifestyle and nutritional changes. Diet had long been known to play an essential role in ensuring better physical, mental, and emotional health, which is why natural treatment methods often involve foods rich in certain nutrients.

There are varieties of cold water fish (salmon, mackerel and herring are only a few) that have long been identified as having significant benefits for human health. However, more recent studies suggest that the oils derived from these fish may be beneficial for brain related disorders–including bipolar disease–as well. Lending credence to this theory is data gathered from countries such as Korea, Japan, Iceland, and Puerto Rico, all of which have the lowest reported cases of bipolar disease, and the highest consumption of fish.

In addition to fish and fish oils, some people have reported favorable results by increasing their intake of vegetables, fruits, eggs, and nuts among other natural foods.

Even increased magnesium is thought to lower the risk of developing bipolar disease. Working in a similar manner as the commonly prescribed lithium, magnesium may play an increasing role in efforts to reduce the severity of symptoms associated with bipolar disease.

Does this mean that the use of pharmaceutical treatment solutions should be avoided entirely? Not necessarily. However, the promising results of alternative treatment methods may give the broader medical community the impetus to study its effects on bipolar disease in a more consistent and in-depth manner. It may take a while yet before pharmaceutical solutions for bipolar disease enter the mainstream, but when it does, there may finally be a lasting treatment for bipolar disease that doesn’t involve any severe side effects.