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What vitamins, minerals and supplements Abram Hoffer, MD, PhD took
Wednesday, December 24, 2014 8:43 am Email this article
Here is video clip of Abram Hoffer, MD, PhD describing what he took in the way of vitamins, minerals and nutritional supplements.
Dr. Hoffer lived to be 91-years-old (November 11, 1917 – May 27, 2009).
Dr. Hoffer discovered that niacin raises HDL levels. He also discovered that large doses of niacin can often cure schizophrenia.
Nobel Prize-winning chemist, Linus Pauling, PhD, coined the term orthomolecular medicine after meeting and working with Dr. Hoffer.
Here is what Dr. Hoffer said he was taking in 2008:
- B-100 Complex
one capsule per day—contains all the B-vitamins
600 mcg per day
4500 mg per day, taken as 1500 mg, 3 times per day (with meals, I assume)
- Vitamin C
2000 mg per day, taken as 1000 mg, 2 times per day (with meals, I assume)
- Vitamin A
30,000 IU’s per day
- N-Acetyl-Cysteine (NAC)
3000 mg per day, taken as 1,000 mg, 3 times per day (with meals, I assume), it increases a naturally-occurring antioxidant in the body called glutathione
- Coenzyme Q10, (CoQ10)
300 mg per day, taken as 100 mg, 3 times per day
Note: Peter Langsjoen, MD, who has studies CoQ10 for many years, says that Ubiquinol, which is reduced CoQ10, is better than the more commonly-available for, Ubiqunone.
Langsjoen noted on Julian Whitaker’s radio program that they found that 300 mg of Ubiquinol increased blood levels of CoQ10 3-4 times more than when they gave the same dose of the more common form Ubiqunone.
Here is where I bought the product I am current taking NOW Foods Ubiquinol 100 mg.
You can do a Google search to compare prices on this product.
You canb do a Google search for “Ubiquinol 100 mg”for other brands and to compare prices.
- Vitamin D (vitamin D3, I assume) 6,000 IU’s per day
- Salmon oil (fish oil, omega-3 fatty acids), 2,000 mg per day, contains omega-3 fatty acids, DHA and EPA
The cheapest source of Fish Oil capsules that I have found, by far, is Costco.
- Zinc 50-100 mg per day
Note: As little as 50 mg of zinc can cause a copper deficiency. This happened to me back in 2000. I was getting 30 mg in a multiple vitamin I was taking, and then added an additional 50 mg at bedtime.
About 5 days after I added the extra 50 mg, I went to bed feeling fine, and woke up the next day with terrible joint pain in my knees, ankles, hips, and back. It took me a couple of months to figure out what it was. During this time, my feet started feeling very tired, my achilles tendon felt tight like it could tear; my calf muscles felt tight like I might pull them; I developed tennis elbow for the first time in my life; I developed a twinge in my neck; and I felt much more susceptible to supplements making me fell anxious.
When I finally figure out what it was, and reduced my dose of zinc, and started taking extra copper gluconate, I had a miraculous recovery, however, it took about 3 months to feel many of the effects, and about 6 months to fully recover. So it was a slow process. So, if you take zinc, be sure to balance it with copper.
Jonathan Wright, MD tells his patients who are taking zinc to take 2 mg of copper, 2 or 3 times per day. I take slightly more than this.
- Folic Acid
5,000 mcg per day (which is the same as 5 mg)
- Vitamin E
800 mg per day
- Alpha Lipoic Acid (Lipoic Acid)
600 mg per day, taken as 200 mg, 3 times per day
Note: R-Lipoic Acid is the more potent form of lipoic acid.
Dr. Hoffer was the author of many books including:
Here is synopsis of this book, Adventures in Psychiatry: The Scientific Memoirs of Dr. Abram Hoffer.
“This book is a feast for the mind and the spirit: the autobiography of one of the great doctors of the 20th century, Dr. Abram Hoffer. For those of us who have learned, through painful personal experience that drugs, surgery, and most of high-tech medicine offer only very temporary benefits, but rarely if ever a cure, this book tells the wonderful story of the rebirth of nutritional medicine. Based on the science of biochemistry, now known as orthomolecular medicine.
“Here we follow the journey of its founder: from his Saskatchewan farm childhood, subsequent training in bio-chemistry and agricultural science, his early insights into the central importance to human and animal health of soil and plant food quality, to his specialization in psychiatry, professorship at the University of Saskatchewan, and his daily work with patients. We learn of his disillusionment with traditional methods of treating the mentally ill and we share his excitement of discovery as we follow his dramatic case histories, which unfold like detective-stories, as he uncovers the connection between deficiencies in specific vitamins, minerals and essential fatty acids and mental illness. “
Dr. Hoffer is also featured in the Documentary on the Orthomolecular Treatment of Schizophrenia called “Masks of Madness: Science of Healing” which is a documentary on the Orthomolecular Treatment of Schizophrenia, hosted by actress Margot Kidder, which includes interviews with schizophrenics who have been treated with vitamin therapy.
You can view a 15-minute preview of the DVD here.
The DVD can be purchased from the International Schizophrenia Foundation.
International Schizophrenia Foundation
16 Florence Avenue
Toronto, Ontario, Canada M2N lE9
(416) 733-2117 phone
(416) 733-2352 fax
Articles on the same subject can be found here:
On Jun 01, 2010 at 1:09 pm Scott wrote:
. . . . .
Just a heads up on the Niacin. A major side effect, and it isn't bad (It goes away after about 20-30 minutes) of Niacin is flushing. When I take it, I get very, very warm and parts of my body will turn red (mainly from about the upper chest up to my face). It goes away in about a half hour, and while it is discomforting, I would recommend taking your pills when you have a good half hour to not have to worry about going outside. I wouldn't recommend taking it before going out in the car, as your clothing may cause you to itch.
On Jan 22, 2011 at 10:32 pm Elizabeth wrote:
. . . . .
Scott, realize your comment was awhile ago but... try the niacinamide version, it doesn't cause lots of flushing and crosses the blood brain barrier quickly. I'm up to 1,500 a day and feel great.
Larry, thank you so much for all the work you've done here and all the wonderful info.
On Jan 23, 2011 at 11:42 am Larry Hobbs wrote:
. . . . .
The niacin flush is due to a histamine release.
I think this may be one of its benefits -- the histamine release -- although no one seems to talk about it.
As Elizabeth noted, niacinamide does NOT cause flushing, however, niacin improves cholesterol levels -- lowers LDL and raise HDL -- whereas niacinamide does NOT.
In this respect, niacin appears to be better.
However, for anti-anxiety effects, niacinamide appears to be better.
I think there is also evidence to suggest that niacin lowers the risk of cancer. I am not sure this is true of niacinamide.
A study in the 1970's found that niacin given to men with elevated cholesterol levels reduced the risk of dying by 11% over 15 years.
I am not aware that niacinamide would do the same.
For this reason, I take both.
I take niacin with each meal 3 times a day along with a multiple vitamin and B-100 capsule which contains niacinamide, and then I take niacinamide at bedtime along with other things (tryptophan, inositol, calcium, magnesium).
Joan Mathews Larson, PhD, who has been treating people with addiction problems as well as depression and anxiety for 30 years says she uses niacinamide.
Here is what she wrote on her website.
(Look in the Anxiety section.)
"We use the niacinamide form. It is superior to niacin for relief of anxiety since niacin does not penetrate the brain as easily as does niacinamide."
She goes on to say:
"Certain B vitamins are crucial to reducing anxiety. In fact the textbook description of anxiety neurosis exactly matches the symptoms of B3 (niacin) deficiency: Hyperactivity, nervousness, fatigue, depression, apprehension and insomnia. Niacinamide is the preferred form of B3 as it penetrates the brain far more easily than does niacin. In 1979, shortly after the original Valium patent expired, Hoffmann La Roche, the drug company who made Valium, published an article entitled: "Nicotinamide is a brain-constituent with benzodiazepine like actions." What that means is niacinamide (nicotinamide is the British name for niacinamide) acts like Valium and that entire group of benzodiazepines, in the brain. Of course niacinamide will not addict you. The reason niacinamide is not widely used as a tranquilizer is simple- it isn't patentable! Dr. Abram Hoffer and Humphry Osmond found that a possible genetic deficiency exists in some people who need larger daily quantities of niacinamide to produce a normal state of calm. Since it is water soluble, niacinamide does not store up in the body causing an overdose. Many have used one to three grams in divided daily doses successfully.
"Warning: If you persistently experience nausea from taking niacinamide, it means your liver is unable to handle that amount of B3. Immediately stop taking it for awhile and if you resume again, cut the dose in half."
Regarding niacinamide, Dr. Larson also says:
"Several other nutrients also have calming properties. Inositol has a soothing effect on spinal-cord nerves, the brain, and cerebrospinal fluid and produces anti-anxiety effects similar to the drugs Librium and Meprobamate. The amino-acid derivative GABA (Gamma-Amino-butyric Acid) is also a calming substance. The combination of inositol, GABA, and niacinamide enhances sleep."
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