Herbs are a foundational root in medicine and health treatments, dating back thousands of years throughout every culture around the world. Modern Western herbalism comes from ancient Egypt. The Greeks developed a comprehensive philosophy of herbal medicine by 100 BCE and the Romans built upon it to create a variety of medical practices, some of which are still used today.



Psychological hardiness is an individual’s resistance to stress, anxiety and depression. It includes the ability to withstand grief and accept the loss of loved ones. Alternative medicine is a more popular term for health and wellness therapies that have typically not been part of conventional Western medical approaches but are often used along with conventional medicinal protocols.  Coping and dealing with stress in a positive manner play a major role in maintaining the balance needed for health and well-being.



Interest in complimentary and alternative medicine (CAM) is increasing as consumers and health care professionals search for additional ways to treat anxiety, depression and other mental health disorders. Some of these remedies include:

St. John’s Wort.  More than 30 studies show it to be effective for treatment of mild forms of depression,…


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detoxification. During detoxification, the body tries to purge all traces of alcohol. You may feel as though you’re having a very bad hangover. You may have sweats, nausea and vomiting, diarrhea and headache. You could even have hallucinations or delirium tremens (the DTs). DTS can lead to dangerous cardiovascular problems. These symptoms can last anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks. Go to the emergency room immediately if you have a high fever, seizures, vomiting that won’t stop, chest pain, trouble breathing or an irregular heartbeat.

Almost as bad as physical withdrawal symptoms are mental withdrawal symptoms. You may feel anxious and depressed. Your craving to drink may become overwhelming, and despite your good intentions, you may succumb to the temptation, nullifying the work you’ve done. Drinking again seems to make all the symptoms, physical and mental, go away. You may later decide to give going cold turkey a try again, setting yourself up for a vicious cycle of quitting, relapsing, quitting, relapsing, until you finally decide it’s impossible for you to quit on your own.

With proper treatment, you can manage withdrawal and eventually recover from your addiction. Detoxification under medical supervision gives you access to doctors and licensed professionals such as therapists who will monitor your detox and treat you accordingly. You may also receive medication to alleviate the discomfort that often accompanies withdrawal.

Consider carefully if quitting cold turkey is the best choice for you. Remember, when you stop taking a substance, your tolerance to it lowers, so if you do start to take it again, you’ll be more likely to overdose. Having a supportive network of physicians, therapists and people who gone through the same experiences as you could be a great asset rather than trying to go it alone. If you decide you need to be in rehab, there are numerous resources available online to find a treatment program. The website of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) (www.samhsa.gov/find-treatment) has a locator with information about and links to more than 11,000 addiction treatment programs, including residential treatment centers, outpatient treatment programs and inpatient hospital programs. You may also want to attend meetings with Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous or sign up for a smoking cessation program.



and may change from day to day. As uncomfortable as it can be, nicotine withdrawal typically isn’t dangerous to your health. However, the success rate for quitting smoking cold turkey is not promising: Older studies found only up to 5 percent of those who quit smoking cold turkey stay off cigarettes for at least six to 12 months.

If you do decide to go cold turkey anyway, here are some tips to make it a little easier to handle:

Researchers say alcohol-dependent individuals are not good candidates for quitting cold turkey. People who try to quit on their own face a very real possibility for encountering severe and potentially life-threatening symptoms from

It’s a question almost everyone who has an addiction – whether it’s to smoking, alcohol or drugs – has asked himself or herself: Should I try to quit cold turkey?

“Cold turkey” means stopping the use of alcohol, nicotine and drugs altogether at once, instead of gradually reducing use. The phrase refers to a common withdrawal symptom most people go through – goosebumps from chills, which look like the body of a refrigerated turkey.

The safety of quitting cold turkey depends on the substance you’re trying to quit. Getting off cigarettes or alcohol may be safe to do on your own. Quitting highly addictive drugs or a severe alcohol dependence can cause serious side effects and, in some cases, death.

Realizing your drinking, smoking or drug use has gotten out of hand and you need and want to quit is a big first step in recovery, but doing it cold turkey is probably not the best choice. “Just say no” sounds easy – but quitting is easier said than done. Going the cold turkey route does not work for everyone, especially for people who are dependent on a particular substance.

If you’re trying to quit smoking, the good news is your body will start reaping the health benefits of quitting within 20 minutes after your last cigarette. Common nicotine withdrawal symptoms include irritability, restlessness, difficulty sleeping and concentrating and nausea. These symptoms and their severity can be different from person to person