Many people use medication (incl. over the counter otc) . Even though they are useful in case of illness and health complaints, they can cause side effects.  One of them is that medication deprives the body of essential nutrients. Pharmacist Suzy Cohen RPh has written a book about this phenomenon and offers a scientific solution to this problem. Below you will find an abstract from her book – Drug Muggers, which medications are robbing your body of essential nutrients – and natural ways to restore them- (ISBN 9781605294162)

About the book ‘Drug Muggers’, written by Suzy Cohen RPh

Suzy Cohen worked for 20 years as a certified Pharmacist and has written many columns and books. Furthermore, she is a member of the American Pharmacists Association. In her book she offers a scientific solution to side effects caused by medicine and unhealthy choices in lifestyles.  This solution is mainly aligned to the use of the right nutrients and nutritional supplements, which protect health and vitality. As a pharmacist, she knows that medication is useful to treat certain illnesses and (chronical) diseases. However, it has been proven that this medication also deprives the body of its natural  supply of vitamins, minerals and hormones. That’s why she refers to this effect as ‘Drug Muggers’. Suzy Cohen explains the side effects that medication can cause. This because these vital nutrients are essential to the body in order  to function properly. In case of shortages in vital nutrients, serious health complaints can manifest. In her book, she explains the effect that choices in one’s lifestyle could have in depriving the body of its essential nutrients. Examples of these lifestyle choices are; stress, smoking, alcohol, coffee, diets, use of sugar, processed foods and animal products such as dairy. The book has been outlined such that the reader can build up a detailed view of its own personal situation. When using medication, it also provides immediate solutions to prevent and reduce potential side effects. These solutions are built on the most essential nutrients such as, vitamin A/B/C/D and minerals such as calcium/magnesium and zinc. Suzy also discusses important hormones such as melatonin and other essential ingredients necessary to (re)build a healthy condition with the use of Q10, intestinal flora, etc. For each of these vital nutrients she provides insight as to which medication and lifestyle choices mug the body. As a result of shortages in these essential nutrients side-effects such as fatigue, depression, weight gain, digestive problems, irregular heartbeat, (chronical) pain, dizziness can occur. These are known side-effects of the use of painkillers, antibiotics, hormone therapy, anti-depressives, medication against high blood pressure and irregular heart beat. Finally, she offers a solution in terms of adjusted diet and specific supplements to replenish shortages. She also promotes the use of biological nutrition and (combined) supplements that are easily accepted by the body.

Example: essential mineral Magnesium

According to Suzy Cohen, magnesium is one of the most important minerals to our bodies (together with calcium) because it is used in virtually any process that’s happening within our cells. Magnesium plays an important part in relaxation, blood pressure stabilization, proper heart rhythm and a well-functioning pancreas.  Shortages of magnesium, can lead to depression and heart/diabetes. These diseases are becoming more and more apparent. This is also a result of the exhaustion of our soil which leads to less magnesium in our nutrition. It has been proven that many antibiotics, anticonception, antacids as well as medication prescribed for high blood pressure, ADHD and asthma/COPD also deprive the body of its already low levels in magnesium. The complete list with medication that influence magnesium levels in the body can be downloaded here. The results of shortages in magnesium can lead to further medication  being prescribed (vicious circle). The solution is therefore to replenish the shortages in magnesium levels. First of all this can be done by the right diet rich in magnesium, like spinach broccoli, tomato, beets, seeds, rice, quinoa and oats. In addition, one could take magnesium supplements (amino acid, chelate or glycinaat forms). As a pharmacist she has experienced that magnesium can also interact with certain antibiotics causing these to be less effective. Suzy Cohen advocates doctors to conduct specific diagnostics in order to identify certain shortages.
These diagnostics do not offer in all circumstances a reliable measurement of magnesium shortages in the cells, more information can be downloaded here. For this reason Brainlabs Foundation aims to improve these diagnostics. They have identified biomarkers that help improve these diagnostics. Further research is necessary to validate and further develop solutions for health care.