What I Did Right: From Prescription Pitfalls to Natural Health Advocacy

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When I graduated from pharmacy school in 1989, I was eager to ease the world’s suffering. Do you know what I did right? 

At that time, my profession was rated the #1 “trusted” profession in the country. How could anything I dispense be bad?

Maybe I’m the sensitive sort, but I got really upset when my patients called the pharmacy to describe their new, uncomfortable side effect. For example, I would fill a prescription for a muscle relaxer like “cyclobenzaprine” and then get a frantic call from someone who became very dizzy or zoned out.

I learned a lot since then. Here’s my blog on that: The Top 10 Best Medications and Herbs for Muscle Relaxation

What I did right!

Once, I filled a prescription for sumatriptan and then 4 hours later, took a call from the patient who said she was feeling mild chest pain and was very weak. The most memorable one was when I dispensed an analgesic and heard from the wife that he had gone to sleep and not waken up in 6 hours!

Headache FREE Book

I learned a lot since that time too! So you know what I did right? I wrote a book about it! I know for a fact that I’ve saved a few people from killing themselves because they finally FINALLY got relief from the information I shared!

pharmacist suzy cohen

Pharmacists as a General Rule Care

I could tell you more stories but you get the point. Pharmacists, as a whole, care very much about our patients. It makes us sad to hear that the medication we dispense causes a detrimental side effect for you. Fortunately, side effects don’t occur all the time, or with every single person. There are a handful of lucky ones, and I think we all agree that some medicines are essential, and worth the mild side effects.

Do you know what I did right after figuring out the main reason for side effects? I wrote a book about it so that others would understand how to help themselves if they found themselves in the position of having to take medications.

Since I graduated all those years ago, I’ve done something right. I’ve asked the question, “Why?”  In doing so, I’ve learned that when you block a pathway, or derail an enzyme from doing its job, you launch the first domino which creates a cascade of events leading up to a side effect (which could be diagnosed as a new disease you know!)

People take WAY too many drugs and pills! It’s the answer to every question you ask your doctor. That’s what physicians are trained to do – to know the most effective medications for symptoms. But is that what you really want, a shmorgasboard of pills for breakfast, lunch, and dinner?

Start with a statin and 2 years later you will need medication for hypothyroidism, depression, restless legs and erectile dysfunction. If I did one thing right, it’s that I made people aware of the drug-nutrient depletion (aka drug mugging) effect.


It’s not rocket science, it’s basic biochemistry. Block the HMGCoA enzyme (statin cholesterol drugs) and you block production of natural CoQ10 (which your muscles love)! That answers the “why” question that people have when they take statins and wonder why they have Charley horses or feel weak. So do you know what I did right after that???

I wrote a bunch of blogs about it so people could learn how to restore the lost nutrients and this information helped reduce pain, cramps and misery for SO MANY! Read more here, Taking Statins? Beware of Cramps: 5 Ways to Stay Safe.

When you block the calcium-dependent membrane function in your gut with the drug metformin (used for diabetes), you lower vitamin B12 levels. A deficiency of B12 lis well-documented to cause painful neuropathies. This answers the “why” question in case you have more numbness, or pins and needles in your hands and feet. Probiotics, calcium and B12 could help if you take metformin.

Drug Muggers

As a pharmacist (code for ‘drug information specialist’) I know I did something right! I delved deeper and learned how medications steal the life out of you!  I now teach people how to restore health and balance by putting back key nutrients that mitigate drug-induced nutrient depletions (which spark the side effects).

My Journey

I actually gave up my job as a Pharmacist at the hospital and the chain store (CVS) that I worked at. I had two jobs at once. I gave up both practices to devote my life to researching and writing blogs and books for people. I didn’t want anyone to end up like Sam being poisoned by a drug (ciprofloxacin) and then having 10 others layered on top to try to cure every side effect of the first debacle.

My syndicated column and natural health books didn’t take off right away, I started in 1999. And the industry was, and is saturated with lots of people trying to help. It is 2024 right now. Natural remedies are more embraced. You even see occasional television commercials for things. But back in the 90’s I was climbing an uphill battle because my natural health message isn’t always met with open arms!

After I got symptoms of hypothyroidism, I decided to write a book called Thyroid Healthy – to prevent you from getting misdiagnosed! I also during my career as a natural health blogger got into a FIGHT WITH A DOCTOR! More than one.

People still refer to it as snake oil and assume that FDA approval means perfection and safety. And Pharma is a big industry and for the most part, they don’t love the message that natural health bloggers and practitioners have to share. But after the pandemic, when people realized they needed to take care of their immune health, natural Earth-grown herbals and the use of vitamins and minerals came to the forefront. Know what I did right? I wrote an ebook on ways to help yourself if you have lingering effects.

Widget ebook COVID V2

Resources and Referrals

This website is what I did right! Use the search box and find help for yourself. There’s a book tab, and a shop now (with my own custom formulas that work as well as most things, but without the side effects).

Know what else I did right? I created a dietary supplement line that is clean, effective and made in the USA in FDA-inspected laboratories. I am so proud of this, it was not an easy feat!

You can shop everywhere and anywhere you want – there’s no pressure to shop with me but when you do, be assured that you’re getting the very best ingredients. You can trust that everything I put my name on is top-notch. Plus, it supports my ability to continue researching, writing and working for you. Click on the shop tab above to ‘browse the shelves’ online. Be sure to read reviews, they are useful.

By the way, it’s not just drugs that cause side effects. Certain FRUITS interact, and certain foods do too. Coffee mugs minerals that you need to make thyroid hormone. Drinking a lot of COFFEE can lead to hypothyroidism if you don’t restore lost nutrients. I made a video about that which lives on youtube.

I also have written about coffee and matcha because I love them both. Here’s one: BENEFITS OF COFFEE. 

By the way, wine and alcohol also mugs thiamine which can cause calf muscle tenderness and memory loss. You may want to read this article I wrote on that exact topic, Are You Risking Your Mind for a Drink? Thiamine Matters.