This blog is mainly interested in the connection between mood disorder, such depression, anxiety, OCD and PTSD and nutrition. Articles are for educational purposes only. Self-help therapy should only be in partnership with qualified health care practitioners

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

MY CAREER AS A NUTRITIONAL PSYCHOTHERAPIST

by
Jurriaan Plesman, BA(Psych), Post Grad Dip Clin Nutr
I will try to be as brief as possible in giving some of my background. Now in the eighties, in my younger days I used to suffer from depression and varied forms of mood disorders from depression, OCD, PTSD, anxiety attacks and as a result of psychiatric treatment, drug addiction as well. I underwent drug and psychotherapy under the supervision of psychiatrists and psychologists. In my opinion this made things worse. I became an iatrogenic drug addict, with suicidal tendencies. Whilst in this state of mind I decided to go to university to study psychology in the hope of helping myself. After graduating in psychology I started volunteering at a Drug Rehabilitation Centre, where I developed the Positive Ego Training Program . This Program is described in my book "Getting off the Hook" freely available at Google Book Search Program. However I became aware that this program did not completely help me or my clients. It was during this time - in the 60's - that I became interested in the physiological aspects of drug addiction which later on extended to all forms of "mental illness'. BTW I consider "mental illness" to be a misnomer, as it really does not exist, because most forms of mood disorders are biologically based.
My career started off as a teacher of psychotherapy. Initially I was asked to train volunteer counsellors at the Drug Rehabilitation Centre in Sydney, Australia. Soon clients, instead of volunteers attended my lectures. Since my classes included practical sessions of empathy and interviewing, and putting into practice nutritional- and psychotherapy, it developed into a method of helping people overcome their addiction. Thus a basic principle of the kind of psychotherapy I teach is that the client learns the tools of psycho-nutritional therapy, leaving it up to the client to be his own therapist. One of the tenets is that a client is not only his own therapist, but also is required to teach the tools of psychotherapy to other clients. Thus treatment of drug addiction hopefully could become some sort of snowballing movement in the addiction sub-culture.
As many of my clients at the time were on Probation by Court Order, my methods became known among the Directors of Probation and Parole in NSW. Because about 75% of all prisoners and offenders have addiction as a co-morbid condition, I was then asked by one of the more progressive directors of Probation and Parole Service of NSW (Australia) to join the Probation and Parole Service. It was understood that I was to continue teaching drug addicted clients my program as well as perform the other duties of a Probation and Paroles Officer. Later on, the Director who employed me was replaced by an other director and it is roughly from this time onward that I started to experience problems applying my program, as being "beyond the duties of a Probation and Parole Officer". My problems with the NSW Department of Corrective Services were really political and not scientific, driven along by a powerful medical lobby groups. It is set out here by Dr Jay Harley-McDonald. I am of the firm belief that the heydays of "psychological" counselling are over, and that biological psychology is going to play a primary role in the near future.
From now on I will continue to describe my career and experiences by references to articles I have already written, and I suggest you read the following articles: Read my book "Getting off the Hook " available at Google Book Search. Search my book "How groups were run". Assumptions in Psychotherapy, Why Alcoholics Drink?, Addiction (Alcoholism) is Treatable Disease Drug Addiction is Nutritional Disorder Depression is a Nutritional DisorderSilent Diseases and Mood Disorders The Forgotten Factor in the Crime Debate. For an overall view of my approach see: Self Help Personal Growth Program The psychological aspects of mood disorders are covered in: Summary of the self-help psychotherapy course
It has always been my hope that drug counsellors or for that matter any "mental health counsellor" ( I see drug addiction being only one example of a mood disorder) be trained in Nutritional Psychology as an ESSENTIAL part of their training!
Also read:  My Personal History as a Nutritional Psychotherapist and 



24 comments:

  1. I have been visiting various blogs for my term papers writing research. I have found your blog to be quite useful. Keep updating your blog with in valuable information... Regards

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You will find more information at:
      www.hypoglycemia.asn.au

      Jurriaan Plesman

      Delete
  2. I have a friend that her daughter has an illness so the doctors gave her some medicines but that made her to be addicted.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is not uncommon. Doctors do not generally know how to treat mood disorders.

      Delete
  3. Yes, I do not believe that AD medications is the ultimate answer. They mask symptoms without addressing the underlying causes of mood disorders.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I am glad I came across your blog.. I am currently in school for nutrition and psychology and plan on becoming a nutritional psychologist... keep posting the great information

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You find most of my other articles at: www.hypoglycemia.asn.au

      Delete
    2. You find most of my articles at:
      https://docs.google.com/document/pub?id=1M3x0ciu21Q8-KJO3tcIuxE-Mn97OIxCKzuhHDY8umrU#id.m9k24s-yjf9sc

      Delete
  5. I stumbled across this article concerning hypoglycemia (amongst other things), and was thankful to read it as my husband has had many of the symptoms described, i.e. anger, etc. He has been diagnosed as having hypoglycemia, but with little treatment from the doc. He is taking glycerin now and it helps, but if he forgets it's been difficult to say the least. I am forwarding this to him and he is positive about reading it. I'm glad that he is really trying to find a way to treat the hypoglycemia. It has been very difficult......

    ReplyDelete
  6. It is one of the saddest things to see when someone you know is going through an addiction. Most addicts can not help themselves and need the support of family and friends to get them healthy. Having the moral support of loved ones and a good drug rehabilitation center to be placed in can lead to the road to recovery. Please do not ignore anyone struggling with this disease.

    ReplyDelete
  7. as a Certified Nutritional Consultant (GCNM 2006) and a co-founder of the nutritional non-profit A Perfect Healing, Inc., i am sadly too aware of the medical/pharmaceutical attempts at hiding and discrediting nutritional remedies for disease. you should be so proud of yourself that you not only brought these truths to people who suffered so much from a lack of proper nutrition to the point of violence and incarceration, but you continue into your 80's to spread this crucial word. i am waiting for the day that the commercialized food and pharmaceutical industries will simply be a memory, replaced when whole communities will grow their own whole organic foods from local soils nourished by recycled and composting plant debris. world hunger and mental/emotional disease can be cured at once, with global practices of locally growing our own organic foods. the day will come ...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You and I and many others may just bring this about. It is matter of educating people. The professionals in this area are past this point.

      Delete
  8. Thank you very much for your comments, Rhona Corinne Friedland. I know I will not see in my time, normal acceptance of Nutritional Medicine by mainstream medicine. But know the time will come eventually.

    “A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it.”
    Max Planck (1858-1947) German physicist and Nobel laureate

    ReplyDelete
  9. it makes a lot of sense ... i think the mental health organizations focus alot on how people think alot which i think has been partially beneficial for me, but is only a small piece of the pie..we are physiological beings and in that our own personal maintenane in regards to our health and overal "mental" function is extremely important.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Hello,

    I am so I interested in the work that you do. I was wondering, to become a Nutritonal Psychotherapist, what credentials are necessary? I have a biochemistry background, a masters in business and am studying holistic nutrition. Do a need to pursue a masters in psychology or a psychotherapy degree? I am from Canada if that helps with your recommendation. Thanks so very much!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If you have background in biochemistry (especially nutritional biochemistry) and a Masters of psychology including psychotherapy, i believe you have all the qualifications to practise Nutritional Psychotherapy.

      Delete
  11. Hello! Thank you for sharing your thoughts about psychotherapy in your area. I am glad to stop by your site and know more about psychotherapy. Keep it up! This is a good read. I will be looking forward to visit your page again and for your other posts as well.
    While some psychotherapeutic interventions are designed to treat the patient using the medical model, many psychotherapeutic approaches do not adhere to the symptom-based model of "illness/cure". Some practitioners, such as humanistic therapists, see themselves more in a facilitative/helper role. As sensitive and deeply personal topics are often discussed during psychotherapy, therapists are expected, and usually legally bound, to respect client or patient confidentiality. The critical importance of confidentiality is enshrined in the regulatory psychotherapeutic organizations' codes of ethical practice.
    The psychotherapy practiced by therapists from these disciplines can come from any of the “schools” of therapy described above. While the dispensation of medication is reserved to psychiatrists and to some specially certified nurses, the quality of psychotherapy does not vary from one discipline to the next. It varies more as a result of the knowledge, experience and “style” of the individual therapist. Call us for help in locating a suitable therapist for your needs.

    psychotherapy Massachusetts

    ReplyDelete
  12. Well, it is my experience that psychotherapy is useless, when a person is suffering from a biological disorder that is responsible for abnormal psychological experiences. You need to first treat the biological disorder BEFORE attempting to use psychotherapy. For instance, you cannot treat diabetes - often associated with depression - with talk therapy. First stabilize blood sugar levels and then use psychotherapy (only if still necessary). Most of the time psychotherapy is unnecessary.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I'm a licensed clinical social worker practicing psychotherapy in New York City. I've recently been diagnosed with late-stage Lyme disease which is known as the 'great imitator' of diseases-mood disorders, included. I've started a blog to document my healing journey. Since taking time off to heal, I've been immersing myself in research regarding the Standard American Diet and its relation to chronic disease and psychological disorders. This potentially fatal diagnosis has given me new purpose and faith to turn my life around by looking at the whole picture versus treating the symptoms. I've decided to dedicate my future practice to a holistic approach or biological approach, as you describe. Healing must take place on all levels, and sedating our emotions with pharmaceuticals is not the cure, it's a mask. I'm very grateful for the internet, especially now because it's my main connection to the outside world from bed, but mainly for the wealth of information I stumble upon that continues to alter the course of my life in a positive direction which I know will enable me to help others. In a city full of traditional psychoanalysts, it's refreshing to find a place where these ideas aren't dismissed, so thank you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You mentioned that Lyme disease can be a factor in depression. If you go to Silent Diseases And Mood Disorders (http://www.hypoglycemia.asn.au/2011/silent-diseases-and-mood-disorders/), you'll find some references to Lyme Disease and studies showing that it can cause depression. Yes, it is much more satisfying to combine your psychological knowledge with clinical nutrition. Thanks for the compliment.

      Delete
  14. I am also available at
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/183150461841144/

    ReplyDelete
  15. If you are looking for more information on Signs of Skin Cancer, About Skin Cancer, What is Skin Cancer, and then visit our website chicagoskincancersurgery.com today to consult with our physicians online

    href="http://www.chicagoskincancersurgery.com">skin cancer therapy

    ReplyDelete