Suzy Cohen,  RPh

Suzy Cohen, RPh

I have been a health writer for over 15 years and have dedicated my life to researching an immense variety of health topics. My syndicated column, “Dear Pharmacist,” reaches millions of readers each week and you may have also seen my blogs on the Huffington Post as you do each week here in Total Health magazine. I host a medical minute on the television series “Know the Cause” and have spoken on programs such as Good Morning America Health, The Dr. Oz Show, The 700 Club, The View and The Doctors. My books have been featured in hundreds of magazines and interviews, and have helped millions of individuals around the world understand complicated health issues.

I am also very happy to bring The Thyroid Summit to you. If you have ever considered taking the TSH test or are considering taking the TSH test to determine your thyroid health keep this in mind; some endocrinologists insist the conventional TSH test is a sufficient biomarker to detect thyroid disease! Trust me, it misses up to 80% of you! Your Life Depends On This So Don’t Settle

Dear Readers,

Low dose naltrexone or LDN is the prescription medication that every doctor has heard of, but never prescribes. Regular naltrexone (not low dose) is used for heroin addicts, alcoholics and opiate withdrawal. The low dose version of the same drug has undeniable applications for autoimmune conditions, chronic infections and pain syndromes. Consider it an affordable adjunct especially because Remicade, Imuran, prednisone and other immune drugs come with hefty side effects and outrageous price tags.

Saturday, 15 November 2014 00:00

Mood Food for Suicidal Depression

Dear Readers,

You've been programmed to believe that serotonin deficiency causes depression. If SSRI antidepressants actually cured people, we would not see escalating rates of suicide, agitation, anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder and PTSD.

The secret sadness that people carry is not always apparent to the rest of the world. For example, I went to lunch with a new friend who has a picture perfect life by most standards. She confided to me that she has tried to kill herself three times and suffers with chronic depression. More than 2 decades has passed and not one psychiatrist or physician has ever suggested magnesium to this lovely lady. Not one! Unbelievable considering the studies that suggest magnesium plays some role in depression, even with suicidal tendencies. The type of magnesium matters though.

Saturday, 08 November 2014 00:00

How Spices Work Like Medicine

Dear Readers,

I'm one of those cooks that combines whatever I find in the fridge or pantry without a plan. I'll throw spices and foods together like a mad scientist, kind of how I did in Organic Chemistry in 1987 (hoping I wouldn't blow up the lab). Recently, I went to my first cooking class, "Secrets of Indian Cuisine" at Sur La Table.

Focusing was difficult since I was distracted by the incredible aroma of the garlic, onion and seasonings which were simmering in the pot. Our chef taught us how to create the most amazing Chicken Tikka Masala I've ever tasted! In between bites and moans, I asked why his tasted so much better than the restaurant version. He said, "The secret is the spice you use." He did not use the powdered spices you get from a regular grocery store. His were fresh and he turned both the cumin and coriander seeds into powder using a little electric coffee grinder.

Our eyes widened as he passed around his freshly ground spice with the same store-bought version. The color was completely different. One whiff and his point was made! I decided it's worth the extra 5 minutes to use spices his way. Indian spices are some of the healthiest on the planet and can act as an aphrodisiac, antibacterial, immune booster, respiratory aid and digestive tonic. I recommend these:

Saturday, 01 November 2014 01:01

Freak Out and Go Bed Dancing

Dear Readers,

Early this morning, Sam clicked on Pandora on his iPhone and Le Freak started playing. If you don't know that song, look on YouTube and watch the 'Freak Out' video by Chic which was popular in 1978 when I was 13 years old. We must have healthy amygdalas because we remembered the lyrics which go like this: Aww freak out! Le Freak! Say Chic! Freak out!"

At some point, the beat overcame our sleepiness and we both started to do a little bed dance, complete with hip gyrations, but not in the way you are thinking. (Stop thinking that, this is a family-friendly column!)

Saturday, 25 October 2014 00:00

I Got Into a Fight With a Doctor

Dear Readers,

Doctors are my friends, so I was dismayed to lose my cool with a physician recently. My husband Sam (who has Lyme disease from a tick bite years ago) developed symptoms that might get diagnosed as "restless legs syndrome." The vibrations, creepy crawly sensations and shocks were not just in his legs, they were head to toe! His limbs felt like they contained concrete. This went on for weeks. On a good night, he could sleep two hours. His misery began after starting some new antibiotics.

Saturday, 18 October 2014 00:00

Schizandra Is My New Favorite Supplement

Dear Readers,

I cannot tell you how frequently people write to me and say they are tired, and frustrated with ineffective medicine. I believe adrenal exhaustion is at the root of pretty much everyone's misery and there isn't a drug that nurtures your precious adrenal glands which are above your kidneys. These help you cope with stress. If you have cry easily, have a short fuse, or people call you "cranky" then you might have insufficient adrenal function. We live in such a fast paced world with too much stress, too many emails and too many perceived obligations, it's easy to burn your adrenals out.

Saturday, 11 October 2014 00:00

Vitamin D Testing Should Be More Thorough

Dear Readers,

Vitamin D is good for more than preventing Rickets. It helps at this time of year for depression and immune function. When physicians talk about vitamin D deficiency, they are invariably talking about low levels of an inactive compound called hydroxyvitamin D 25 or "25 (OH) Vitamin D3" as doctors write it. But there's another 1,25 form which is biologically active.

Saturday, 04 October 2014 00:00

How Do Pills and Plastic Impact Your Health

Dear Readers,

Drinking from plastic water bottles, or taking "The Pill" can cause hypothyroidism by raising levels of estrogen hormone in your body. The same can be said about menopause drugs which contain the same synthetic estrogen ingredients or commercial cattle injected with estrogen hormones to make animals heavier at the point of sale. In humans, these hormones raise estrogen, and estrogen holds fat. This sounds counter-intuitive, but men frequently have high levels of estrogen, especially if they have prostate problems but that's another article. My point is excess estrogen causes too many transporters, or taxis which bind up your active thyroid hormone. When bound like that, thyroid hormone is completely unavailable to your cells which is where you need it.

Saturday, 27 September 2014 00:00

What’s in Your Morning Bowl of Cereal?

Dear Readers,

Everyone is worried about heavy metals in their dental amalgams and vaccines. But what if I told you that you could be getting some in your morning bowl of cereal? It's possible according to Mike Adams, Founder of the Forensic Food Lab (

Saturday, 20 September 2014 02:00

How To Deal With…

Dear Readers,

As a pharmacist for 25 years, I've been asked some basic questions so today's column is devoted to giving you answers and ways to deal with various pharmacy concerns. In no particular order:

Saturday, 13 September 2014 00:00

Natural Cures for What Ails You

Dear Readers,

Mother Nature has provided us with a beautiful medicine cabinet. In it, we find foods, herbal extracts and vitamins or minerals that reduce pain and promote health. Consider any of the following items in my list for what ails you. Of course, make sure your approves of you eating or taking something new. So what ails you?

Saturday, 06 September 2014 00:00

7 Facts You Should Know About Copper

Dear Readers,

The other day I was eating lunch with a friend and colleague and he mentioned that copper can increase the risk of cancer. This was not the first time I had heard something scary about copper. Last year, another friend (a medical doctor) also mentioned copper's association with cancer, especially hormonal types. How could something so integral to our body be so bad I wondered?

Saturday, 30 August 2014 02:00

Were You Lied to About Vaccines and Autism?

Many of you have wondered about the connection of vaccines and autism. The rising cases of autism worldwide have to be attributed to something right? But many wonder if it's related to vaccines, mercury, GMO foods or something else?

The biggest story in years broke when a leading researcher at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) helped uncover how they manipulated data and obscured a ridiculously higher incidence of autism. I mean ridiculous, upwards of 340% higher incidence in autism, in the African-American boys who received the MMR vaccine. Dr. William Thompson came forward after a FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) was enacted. The CDC knew in 2003 (more than a decade ago!) that the risk for autism went up but key people kept it hush hush. Like many studies that naive consumers believe, the data was statistically skewed to hide the risks from parents, pediatricians and the general public. My heart aches for all the parents who unknowingly trusted…

Saturday, 23 August 2014 04:00

Help for Hashimoto’s and Hypothyroidism

Dear Pharmacist,

I listened to your Thyroid Summit last June and heard the different doctors talk about medicine but I'm still unsure what I should be taking. I have Hashimoto's and don't do well on Armour. Can you tell me what is best for me?

—J.C., Chicago, Illinois
Saturday, 16 August 2014 08:00

Uncover the Root Cause of Your Depression

Dear Pharmacist,

I am saddened by the suicide of Robin Williams. I've dealt with depression on and off for years, and I was wondering if you have any natural suggestions for me to ask my doctor about?

—L.C., Gainesville, Florida

Unpleasant, uncomfortable, and unexplained side effects? Drug Muggers is your side effect solution.

Prescription and over-the-counter drugs help millions of people with devastating diseases and chronic conditions. But in the process, these medications can also deplete the body’s natural stores of vitamins, minerals, and hormones—the very nutrients you need to keep energy levels high, fend off infections, and be healthy.

Saturday, 09 August 2014 00:00

What I Did Right

Dear Readers,

When I graduated from pharmacy school in 1989, I was eager to ease the world's suffering. At that time, my profession was rated the #1 "trusted" profession in the country. How could anything I dispense be bad?

Saturday, 02 August 2014 04:00

Are You Peeing Out Your Vitamins?

Dear Pharmacist,

I have high blood pressure and my doctor recommended a diuretic and another medicine to relax my blood vessels. Do you think I should take it?

—J. S., Sacramento, California
Saturday, 26 July 2014 00:00

Don’t Be A Mosquito Magnet

Dear Pharmacist,

What spray do you recommend for hiking or picnicking outdoors?

—T.K., Denver, Colorado
Saturday, 19 July 2014 00:00

Energy and Focus in a Tea Bag

Dear Readers,

I didn't like tea growing up but now it is a passion. I often want a caffeinated drink that isn't coffee. I used to drink a lot of yerba mate tea, because it lights me and increases my mental focus and energy. I've discovered Guayusa now.

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