Rebecca - a long, respected member of our forums - writes, "I just read the article about Truehope and EMPowerplus as soon as I picked up the newsletter. I felt that the article needed to be offset with real life experience, since that's what most of us come here for. I'm here to present 'the other side' of the story. This comes from a real family and I am a tough skeptic of food supplements.
"My son, offspring of a BP1 (me) and descended most likely from several undiagnosed bipolars, could NOT be treated with conventional Rx medication. He also got ADHD as a bonus from his dad's side of the family and his dad has depression problems. (The kid came out of one nasty gene pool in terms of mental health issues).
"All kinds of questions can be raised about the quality and consistency of the product because it hasn't been subjected to rigorous independent testing. Some broad claims were made about it that have since trimmed WAY back after the raid by Health Canada on the main office and some court action by both parties. Truehope.com is conservative about what they say now. EMP+ is manufactured in the United States and has the required labeling standard for food supplements. Health Canada has a higher standard for supplements and has interfered in attempts to do double blind studies on this product, but I understand that one was running in Calgary and may have been completed by now. I'm sure that truehope.com would have the details if you care to look. I live with the evidence that it works so the studies don't concern me so much.
"While some may claim that EMP+ is ineffective, I've yet to see a convincing argument that the actual substance is harmful. What's harmful is expecting a miracle and quitting your meds cold, which is STRONGLY discouraged by Truehope.
"This isn't a miracle OR a quack cure. It's based on nutritional research, documented at truehope.com. All of the nutrient levels are well within the dosages considered safe. The RN for the school district checked everything on the label against her reference materials - a lot of extra work for her, but a convenient independent review for me.
"The lack of data to support the efficacy of EMP+ for bipolar disorder is no more abysmal than that which exists for the majority of drugs in use in the United States for the disorder. Most of them have NOT been approved. They're being used 'off-label' and the medical communities in other countries are appalled at how reckless our doctors are compared to theirs in the choice of medications.
"Lots of people dropped out of the program. It costs $150 a month for at least the first 6 months of 'loading.' Either they can't afford it or they ran into difficulties and gave up instead of calling the Truehope support center for some dose adjustment or timing advice. I could have given up on it many times while getting my son up to loading dose and I almost did. It's not for sissies (You know, the ones who gave up as soon as it wasn't perfect), but it works if YOU work with Truehope. I had to learn that the hard way, but at least we didn't give up.
"My son was the first patient in our psychiatric practice to try EMPowerplus. The Dr. couldn't 'officially' recommend it, but 'as a parent,' he said, 'I certainly support your choice.' This psychiatrist now recommends EMPowerplus for the med resistant and for those like my son who simply got physically sick on all things Rx by the time they approached therapeutic level. He also feels it's particularly good for the bipolar / ADHD combo, which my son has and which is tricky to medicate. This doctor stays on the leading edge of research, working with doctors at Stanford University and admits, 'We don't know everything!' He's been fascinated and astonished by the stabilization and calming of my son on a program built around EMPowerplus.
"My son has been stable for over a year on the program of STRICTLY nutritional treatment for his bipolar disorder and ADHD. He's gone from constantly being physically miserable and mentally out of control to being extremely healthy and back in the regular classroom full-time."