Addiction treatment is very personal to me. Nearly thirty-years ago it was me who was having trouble getting free of drugs. My behavior when I was using nearly ruined my life and took away all that was dear to me. If it wasn’t for my family and close friends pushing me into rehab I’d probably be dead right now. I could not be more serious. There is not a day that goes by that I don’t thank the lord for giving everyone close to me the tenacity to keep pushing me in the direction they did. It helped me realize that my life was important too. Their push helped open my eyes and see the bigger picture – a life of happiness and
fulfillment. At the time, this was a bit much for me to buy into considering I was a guy from the Bronx living in Miami who had dropped out of high school. But as I stand here before you I can say with complete confidence that life can be fantastic without drugs and/or alcohol. You can achieve anything you want if you choose to do so.
The operative here is choice. I’ve counseled thousands of people just like you who were at their crossroad. Do I go left and continue using? I’ve seen that road first hand and vicariously through my clients at the center. I can tell you that there is no good ending to that story. Eventually you will stop using – and if you’re lucky your heart will still be pounding. Your other and best option is to stop using right now. It can be a bit concerning not being able to see what’s around the corner, but it is a far better choice.
Rehab is not what some think. In fact many of my clients have told me that it is not nearly what they feared it to be. Rehab has come a long way since I was the patient. There have been more advances in treatment through science over the last thirty-years that it barely resembles what it looked like back in the day. When I was in rehab, it wasn’t working for me the way it was for others. Much of the emphasis at the time was placed on moral character. At the time I believed there were many contributing factors to addiction. I fell back on the eastern and holistic medicine I’d learned while training in karate. I found that I was responding much better when I folded these philosophies and therapies into the program I was involved with. It wasn’t long before I rationalized that if it worked so well for me why not others? So I began developing a program based on the single and succinct core principle of addiction being a mosaic with multiple facets contributing to the disease.
While in rehab, I’d committed myself to helping others fight this awful disease. I took the first job I could get at a treatment center and worked my way up the ladder. Every day I learned something new and used that knowledge to develop my own holistic addiction treatment program. It became a near obsession. Eventually I opened my own center and in time partnered with Jerry Goldfarb and Gerald Goldfarb to form G & G Holistic Addiction Treatment Center. My interest was always – and continues to be – treatment. I’d developed many holistic therapies over the years, but some seemed to work better than others.
In my opinion, two of the best kept secrets than have taken root recently in holistic/ alternative medicine are genetically directed therapies and Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy. I just can say enough good things about these two therapies, especially when used in combination.
Not long ago my good friend and colleague, Dr. Kenneth Blum did a study at my center. Dr. Blum is a world renowned geneticist whose seminal discovery of the reward gene – also known as the addiction gene and the alcohol gene – over twenty-years ago permanently changed the understanding and treatment of addiction. After decades of research he found that people who carry this gene (DRD2-A1) have a genetic predisposition to addiction. They cannot feel the reward and pleasure others experience in everyday life. As a consequence,
people with this genotype often turn to drugs and/or alcohol – not to get high – but to alter their brain chemistry so they can feel normal. The study that Dr. Blum and I conducted at my center confirmed all of my long held suspicions. Of the people tested, 74% carried the addiction gene.
The debate of nature vs. nurture as it relates to addiction has been hashed and rehashed for as long as the disease has been recognized. The extensive studies Dr. Blum has conducted, including the ones at my center, have once and for all put the debate to rest. The answer is both nature and nurture contribute to addiction. However, statically speaking, nature – or genetics in this case – appears to play a larger role in addiction than nature.
I have always believed brain chemistry played a role in addiction. But until now, I didn’t have the empirical data to support my convictions. The same is true in my belief that proper nutrition and vitamin therapy could not only help balance one’s brain chemistry but also improve it function. For over twenty-years I’ve studied vitamin therapy and formulated my own brand of nutraceuticals specifically designed for addicts in recovery. It was always a work in progress, adding new all natural ingredients and observing the results. Unbeknownst to me, Dr. Blum was developing his own formulation at the same time with the same objective.
Support normal brain function while improving genetically compromised functions. We decided to put our formulations through scientific testing that would provide us with meaningful and measurable results. For the study, Dr. Blum and I agreed qEEG (a digital imaging system that shows changes in brain activity in varying colors) imaging would produce the accurate visual results we were looking for. After administering one oral dose of Dr. Blum’s formulation, Synaptose™ to the volunteer, the results were nothing short
of amazing. The image showed the brain turn bright red where it was once as black as night. Similar tests showed my formulation, Mental Clarity’s ability to improve cognitive function and repair. Additional testing of addicts who have been administered Synaptose™ claim that the nearly insatiable drug cravings felt less severe; while the addicts who were administered Mental Clarity stated they felt less foggy, more energy and were more engaged in their daily routines. The results of these tests were published in Post Grad Medical Journal, a peer reviewed medical publication. But more importantly, my center is the only one in the world that makes both these genetically directed therapies available to
clients with genetic predispositions to addiction.
The second best kept secret in holistic/alternative medicine is Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy. HBOT, as it has become known, uses oxygen – one of nature’s best healers – as medicine. It’s been around for over one-hundred years and is an approved therapy for fourteen disorders by the FDA. In other countries, HBOT is used on a much broader scale for many more conditions. The Japanese boast that no one is more than twenty-minutes from a hyperbaric chamber. Professional athletes use HBOT all the time for physical recovery from strenuous workouts. My wife and I use the HBOT chamber at my center regularly. I can tell
you first hand that my experience has been such that this therapy is great for just about anything that ails you.
I’m sure you’ve all seen the chamber used to decompress divers with the bends. What we’ve come to learn is that oxygen at greater than atmospheric pressure has far reaching healing capabilities. The human body is an incredible machine in that it knows when and where a trauma has occurred and immediately sets out to heal the damaged areas. When copious amounts of oxygen under pressure are introduced, the body directs the oxygen to the traumatized areas in the traditional way – the blood stream – and through non-traditional venues. With HBOT, oxygen is dissolved into all of the body’s fluids, the plasma, the central nervous system fluids, the lymph nodes, and bone marrow where it is carried to
areas with diminished or blocked circulation.
HBOT has been proven effective in healing brain trauma similar to what addicts experience by abusing drugs. My clients tell me that after just one treatment they feel much more clear headed with sharpened acuities. Additionally there is growing evidence that HBOT is effective in the ‘off-label’ treatment of a myriad of diseases and injuries such as: brain trauma, stroke, cancer, sports injuries, migraines, depression, multiple sclerosis, autism, cerebral palsy and senility to name just a few.
When genetically directed nutraceuticals are combined with HBOT, the results improve significantly. HBOT aids in the efficient transport and distribution of the nutraceuticals.
Obviously in this short article, I cannot get into great detail on all the alternative and holistic treatment options available to you. What I’ve presented here is merely a small representation of what is out there. I hope that I have at least opened your eyes to the realistic and plausible options in front of you that you may not have considered until now. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call me directly at 305-945-8384. Also for the latest development in cutting-edge treatment check out my website: www.holisticaddictioninfo.com
John Giordano PhD. (hon.) MAC, President and Co-Founder of: G & G Holistic Addiction Treatment Center
John Giordano is a counselor, President and Co-Founder of G & G Holistic Addiction Treatment Center in North Miami Beach and Chaplain of the North Miami Police Department.