It’s been right under our noses for years.
And now we find out that researchers have known for decades about a potential link between antidepressant use and increased risk of breast cancer and ovarian cancer.
It’s staggering to think of what this means.
Could it really be possible that one of the most popular class of drugs of all time might be driving a major health disaster that spans several generations of women?
The answer, in one hard word: yes.
Higher risk of cancer found in antidepressant users
When a Harvard team reviewed more than 60 trials, covering 35 years of research, going all the way back to 1965 they discovered something shocking.
Approximately one-third of the studies suggested a higher risk of ovarian and breast cancers for antidepressant drug users.
That news alone would be bad enough. But their study had multiple layers to peel back–one disturbing layer after another.
For instance, among the different types of antidepressants, researchers found that the cancer link appears to be slightly stronger with women who use the VERY popular selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). Among these drugs are popular antidepressants such as…
- and Celexa.
That reminded me of a drug called Sarafem that I have written about before. Sarafem is prescribed for relief of premenstrual irritability. But in truth it’s nothing more than repackaged Prozac!
It’s scary to imagine how many women out there are using this drug, completely unaware of what they’re actually taking and the potential risks involved.
Short term & low-dose antidepressant use raise cancer odds
The Harvard researchers also found a surprising association with length of antidepressant use.
In the study’s conclusions, the authors theorize that short-term use and/or low dose antidepressants may increase the risk of breast and ovarian cancers.
Also, women who have either of these cancers in early stages may worsen the severity of their disease.
Could it get any worse? Oh yes. And it does…
Prior evidence has shown us that when research has ties to the drug industry, results tend to skew toward positive outcomes, putting drug use in a favorable light.
So the Harvard team reevaluated the data to compare studies conducted without industry participation and 15 studies funded by industry.
Industry-funded studies failed to find cancer links
None of the industry studies found any cancer links.
But nearly HALF of the non-industry studies revealed links to these two devastating cancers.
If we were talking about some wonderfully effective life-saving drug, raising cancer risk might be acceptable–borderline, but acceptable. But just the opposite is true here. Antidepressants have been shown to work about as well as St. John’s wort in relieving mild to moderate depression.
In addition, several other supplements have been proven to help keep depression in check including…
- vitamin D,
- high levels of B vitamins (which include folate, a proven depression-fighter),
- omega-3 fatty acids
- holy basil
Regular exercise, a little direct sunlight exposure (for optimal D try spending 15 to 20 minutes uncovered in the sun daily) and deep breathing exercises are also very helpful for some.
This easy-to-follow video will walk you through a simple deep breathing exercise you can start using today.
Jenny Thompson is the Director of the Health Sciences Institute and editor of the HSI e-Alert. Through HSI, she and her team uncover important health information and expose ridiculous health misinformation, most notably through the HSI e-Alert.
Visit www.hsionline.com to sign up for the free HSI e-Alert.
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