The Mood Cure

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Product Description

We're in a bad mood epidemic, but Julia Ross's plan provides a natural cure. Drawing on thirty years of experience, she presents breakthrough solutions to overcoming depression, anxiety, irritability, stress, and other negative emotional states that are diminishing the quality of our lives. Her comprehensive program is based on the use of four mood-building amino acids and other surprisingly potent nutrient supplements, plus a diet rich in good-mood foods such as protein, healthy fat, and certain key vegetables. Including an individualized mood-type questionnaire, The Mood Cure has all the tools to help you get started today and feel better tomorrow.

Customer Reviews:

  • cure or curse?
    On the surface, The Mood Cure looks pretty impressive, but a closer examination reveals many problems.

    The mood questionaire at the beginning of the book is too broad and vague, and since a person's general mood can change from day to day depending on external circumstances, this can be difficult to assess. Testing for allergies is also very difficult, as symptoms can vary greatly in variety and degree. People can even have a positive reaction to a benign substance if they believe it is an allergen. In any case, self-testing is not recommended.

    Ross is also too critical of carbohydrates and vegetarian diets, and doesn't often make a distinction between whole grains and refined flour. Conversely, she downplays the dangers of a high-fat high-protein diet. Not only that, her comparison of diets today with diets 100 years ago is too broad and scientifically shaky.

    Cautions about supplements are mainly relegated to the back of the book, and she advocates taking SAM-e and melatonin, both of which are largely untested regarding long-term effects (melatonin can have many short-term side effects, and sales are banned in Canada, France, and Britain).

    Undocumented/unsubstantiated statements include:
    28- the study in which a serotonin deficiency is created.
    112- "Take a look at the following sample menu. The word that comes to mind is *satisfying!*"
    130- Hydrogenated fats are "one step away from a plastic."
    134- "Fat really is jolly."
    138- "Casein can be as addictive as gluten."
    154- "I defy you to find more beautiful and cheery people than the Thai."
    On page 45, she actually cites a study in which tryptophan cured depression in birds.

    As if that wasn't enough, she even advocates pseudoscientific remedies such as homeopathy and blood type diets. Lack of replication by others, and recent criticism of high-fat and high-protein diets in general does not bode well for this diet. Proceed with caution....more info

  • Some Practical Considerations
    While reading this book, examining my own program (I have 3 of the 4 most common mood imbalances), and shopping for the supplements, I've become aware of a few practical matters that I think people should be aware of.

    First, this method can take some time. For example, if 5-HTP doesn't work, you should try typtophan. If that doesn't work, you should move on to St John's Wort. If THAT doesn't work, try SAM-e - at least one bottle's worth. Dealing with 3 of the 4 imbalances, I won't know what works and what doesn't if I start taking all of the recomended supplements at the same time. That means going through one by one, which I realize will take a while. Don't get discouraged if you aren't cured on the first day.

    Second, this method can be costly. A month's supply of 5-HTP runs $36 here. A month's supply of SAM-e is $158. Compare that to my $3 co-pay for a month's supply of my antidepressant.

    Let me state that I'm not advising against this program. I generally believe that being drug-free is better than taking drugs, if you can get the same or better results another way. Just realize going in that this program will require time, energy, money, and commitment....more info
  • This method works, but have patience when reading the book.
    I just tried out the cures in this book and they seem to be working. I want to thank the author for researching this method.
    I found myself using the supplements that she suggested but passing on her food cure method. The selection of food was just too limited for me. I read over the " bad foods" and was trying to figure out what exactly I could eat. I think if you're looking to lose weight in addition to improving your mood, than you should follow her food suggestions. It seems like there's nothing left to eat after she goes through food options. But I guess its worked for her patients on the mood cure since they haven't starved to death.
    I'm only giving the book 4 stars out of 5 because the writing isn't clear at times, it's poorly organized, and the author is annoyingly repetitive. For instance, the author mentions that if you fall into more than one of the categories than the methods can address all of them at once. So then I went on a search through the book for some explanation on this and I couldn't find one. I wish the author had found an organized editor to help her format the book, and clarify her writing before it was published. This would have made the book much more enjoyable and accessible to the reader. In addition the author is extremely repetative in her points. In many sections, the author rambled on and on about the same point for pages on end. I don't know what the purpose of this was unless she thinks the readers are all idiots who can't grasp a point and move on. Or maybe she just can't move on! But overall I appreciate her research. This is a valuable book. Just have some patience when reading it....more info
  • Help with depression and other "stuff"
    This book, and the other book this author had written, The Diet Cure, have helped me considerably. The information in these two books has helped me to find something that works for me, to help with the roller coaster that is peri menopause and all of it's lovely mercurical mood swings and insane feelings that accompanied it for me.
    I have used perscription anti depressants in the past, but the side effects were more than I wanted to deal with. This book offered me an alternative to those that actually worked well for me. I'm not a medical professional, and would never ever tell anyone else that they should do what I did. But the information in this book really helped me to find a workable alternative to RX meds that did NOT work for me....more info
  • addresses biological/physical issues over psychological/spiritual ones
    I love that it is not emotional or sappy because most depressed people don't want to hear that crud. Intellectual sufferers need to know their problem may be chemical or hormonal or nutritional and they need straightforward solutions such as the detailed supplement plans in this book. I shared this book with a friend battling drug addiction. There is only one chapter dedicated to addiction but the entire book seems to sum up brain-chemical reasons addiction (and depression, stress, and other moodiness) happens. Thankfully it offers easy solutions (taking natural supplements) to help physically repair your body from addiction and mood problems. Reading about the different mood problems I could see myself perfectly described in one category, and in the other categories I could see perfect descriptions of other people I know. It makes me want to get several copies to get all my friends balanced. ...more info
  • Prozac, alcohol, coffee,cigarettes ?
    Ever wonder why we're drawn to these things? This book is packed with current information about mind nutrition. Included: amino acids, vitamins/minerals, herbs, diet. Most of the emphasis is on amino acids and how they affect our predominant brain nuerotransmitters. If you are taking or considering taking an antidepressant, hooked on coffee, cigarettes, alcohol, drugs, chocolate, this book is a must. It tries to explain the biological "why" we are drawn to these things. This is not one of those fuzzy, "Talk to a therapist, or take vitamin C" books. There are 17 pages of notes referencing studies,articles and scientific journals. This book is a good starting point.
    One of the previous reviewers brought up a good point: the book could have used some better editing. The author repeats herself. But dont stop reading it - there's fascinating information throughout.
    From the inside cover: "the author holds a master's degree in clinical psycology and has been directing counseling programs since 1980."...more info
  • Mood Cure
    Easy reading. Packed with up-to-date information, and loads of reference material to guide you. ...more info
  • Kick That Moodiness To The Curb By Applying A Nutritherapy Approach
    Do you know anyone who always seems to be in a bad mood (if you don't, then have you ever thought that maybe it is YOU who has perpetual moodiness)? For whatever reason, so many people struggle with controlling their emotions and channeling them into a positive force for good. That's what psychotherapist Julia Ross offers those who deal with mood problems in this book. It may surprise you to learn that your attitude may just be a direct result of the food you are putting in your body. Yep, what may seem innocuous to you actually could be leading to an avalanche of stress building up inside of you that is set to bring about destruction to all those around you. You learn what is getting your mood out of whack, what you can do to get your mood better naturally through a "nutritherapy" approach, and using specific tools to permanently and safely rid yourself of mood problems for life. Sound like a plan, man?...more info
  • I loved this book
    Not only did I love this book, but it really has changed my life. I ended up going to a doctor because I was on anti-depressants and I didn't feel comfortable treating myself. I have been on amino acids and am changing the way I eat and I have not felt this great in years. I am very grateful for this book. I finally have an optimistic outlook on life. I am happy to get up in the mornings and I look forward to each day. I have not felt this way since before I had kids 10 years ago....more info
  • Helpful book
    Overall this book is a good compilation of some of the nutrition/mood research available. Most of what I read, I've read elsewhere, but it was nice to have it summarized in one source. I don't agree with some of her opinions (she's an advocate of the Atkins diet and is adverse to vegetarian diets), but most of her advice is good.

    As other reviewers mentioned, she definitely needs a good editor. Her self-promotional, dogmatic, repetitive writing style detracts from the book's content.

    This book can be very helpful, but I'd encourage people to read other research to derive a more balanced perspective....more info

  • Nutrition advice that seems to really work!
    I read this book and started using the 5HTP supplements that the author recommended for those who are depressed and anxious. I also changed my diet as suggested in the book, eating more proteins, cutting down on carbs and eating more greens. I've been using the supplements for two weeks and haven't noticed anything drastic changing regarding my mood. However, I definitely noticed I crave carbs much less than I used to before taking the supplements. According to the book, the reason is now that my serotonin is raised with 5HTP, my body isn't craving carbs to give my serotonin a quick lift. I didn't start this program to lose weight at all. My focus was on changing my mood. However, the difference in my appetite is definitely noticeable to me -- more than the changes in my mood thus far. One word of warning: she recommended 50-150 mg of 5htp per day. I took 150 for two days and it triggered a panic attack. I also had major constipation. After that I lessed the dosage to 50 mg per day. Some other articles I read on 5htp recommend 25 mg per day. *Sigh* It's so hard to know who to really trust on these with such varying advice. Anyway, start low and work your way up, not the other way around. Overall, it was very readable and had tons of good advice....more info
  • It really works!
    I have the greatest respect for Julia Ross. Her book helped me formulate an incredibly effective treatment plan which eradicated (!!!) my severe PMDD completely. I have been completely symptom free for over 2 years. Her research and facts all check out as I did a lot of independent investigation and corroboration.

    The people who gave her less than complimentary reviews probably did not do one 100th as much research as she has when it comes to pin-pointing absolute causes for the ills we face in this hard-paced world we live in. I doubt these skeptics even finished reading her book or followed her advice, and if they did, probably not for long enough to see any real results.

    There is no quick-fix when it comes to ones health. Kudos to Julia Ross on an excellent piece of work. :)...more info
  • A -MUST- read
    My dietician recommended this book to me. Interestingly enough the "American diet" is making many people very unhealthy. In the "Mood Cure," Julia Ross goes in to explain what is causing so many ailments and how to "cure" them.

    I personally do not think that this book is properly titled. In fact, I was tempted to think that this was some fad book. I also did not like the personal quiz at the beginning. I almost missed out on the vital information in this book because of these two things. The information in this book truely is essential for living a happy and healthy life. ...more info
  • Mental wellness self help gem
    Who knew amino acids were so helpful? Who knew white flour and sugar could be so destructive? Considering the subject matter - nutrition, mental health and addiction recovery, this book is a solid reference to have. Hard to find mental self help information is available in an easy to access form, empowering consumers to identify supplements they need affordably and simply. Consumer advocate Ross reveals the addictive quality of most cereal-based foods sold today. Interested readers can also visit the website for Ross' clinic in Mill Valley, CA or check out her lectures. Great job, Dr. Ross! My only complaint is that the title of the book makes it seem hokey and might put off readers....more info
  • After 20 years on meds, I finally got cured... naturally
    The Mood Cure book worked for me. It has more successfully treated my symptoms of depression, anxiety, and apathy than 20+ years of prescription drugs and therapy.

    Will the amino acid & vitamin supplements in this book work for you? I'm sure that "your results may vary"... but I can only hope that if you have been searching for an end to your inner pain... I hope that The Mood Cure will help you as much as it has helped me.

    All I can say is that I had been on medications for depression for a couple of decades (lithium & Wellbutrin for at least the last decade or so), and while I was basically "stable"... I was generally not a happy person. From the outside, my life has always "looked" good... on the inside it has nearly always been a life of quiet pain.

    Last year (2006), I decided to quit my meds and slowly took myself off them. I found that I was no worse without them... but still the baisc feeling upon waking up every day was that I was disappointed- disappointed to wake up again for yet another day. This was not good... especially since I have a wonderful wife, a great son, and in general had many, many reasons to feel grateful for my life rather than disappointed to be living it.

    In December 2006 my wife came upon the Mood Cure in "alternative" pharmacy and she suggested that it couldn't hurt to try amino acid supplements. I'm not really into "alternative" healing (understatement), but I thought "What the heck... wouldn't it be nice to actually NOT be depressed as a general rule? What do I have to lose?".

    I took the 4-part mood questionnaire in the very beginning of the book, drew up a list of supplements recommended in the book based on my "mood type(s)", and immediately started on a program. I felt better already within the first day and significantly better within the first few days.

    It has now been two months of taking these recommended supplements on a daily basis and - as my wife can definitely attest to - my "dark cloud" has lifter, my "blahs" have receded, I no longer feel overwhelmed by stress, and I no longer feel that constant underlying pain in my life.

    Am I grinning like a Chesire cat every day? Of course not, life has ups and downs... but The Mood Cure has been the best thing that I have found yet to help me feel better naturally, every day!...more info
  • Saved me from bad moods
    I have read many books regarding health and nutrition, and only took bits and pieces from those books. This is the first one I heeded the information on. I was sad and depressed occasionally (more often than not), and ate according to my moods. I discovered that my moods were primarily caused by the food I choose to eat. I changed my diet and most of my lifestyle was starting to change before reading it. I can say that when my moods were bad, I would be angry, shy or quite. I can be a better person to others and myself and no longer feel like being killed on the freeway from accidents caused by others. LOL. But really, I'm sure some people understand that, I have had many other people relate to that idea and am not afraid to admit how I felt. I have learned so much from reading this book, which I have helped others understand and try things suggested from the book. I went out and bought a friend a bottle of 5HTP and the book as a gift, because I wanted to share this good feeling. The book is easy to understand, as Julia Ross explains it all. The Mood Cure: The 4-Step Program to Rebalance Your Emotional Chemistry and Rediscover Your Natural Sense of Well-Being ...more info
  • This saved my life
    I've suffered from chronic, low-level depression with periodic major depressive episodes all my life. I was in the throes of another major episode when someone suggested this book to me. I followed her recommendations for immediate relief (the use of amino acid supplements) and in less than 24 hours I was out of my deep, dark well. I still don't believe it. It is a miracle for me.

    I went through 15 years on Effexor - talk about a nasty drug! If I missed a day of that drug I became very ill. I decided to get off of it totally when I began daily exercise and it became clear that the exercise was reducing the need for the drug. Exercise is an important part of my solution, but it isn't the whole solution. I had been using 5-HTP and St. John's Wort but it wasn't working well. Based on this book, my solution set ended up being L-tryptophan, L-tyrosine, and DLPA.

    The diet is challenging in today's environment. Basically, get rid of the sugar and flour. Eat protein every meal and 4-5 cups of vegetables a day. No coffee, no aspartame. It's really just good, sensible eating with a couple of surprises - soy products and vegetable oils (excluding olive oil) are bad. It's still hard to follow with society constantly shoving tasty, addictive garbage at you. For my health and longevity, I've decided that it is a challenge worth taking on....more info
  • Skeptic Becomes Scientist Becomes Convert
    I am a total skeptic. I've been a successful psychotherapist for 25 years. I've had mood difficulties my entire life and have consumed the usual therapies, medications and hormone replacement therapies and remedies without a "cure". What was most helpful about this book was the distinction Ross invites you to make between emotions caused by real events and thoughts versus "false moods" that are physiological states. Psychotherapy doesn't help correct physiological imbalances as efficiently as seeking a physiological remedy. Next, with a simple quiz, she divides these mood states into four basic catagories and invites you to locate yourself into a catagory or two based upon the prevalance of certain symptoms. So far, this is like a detective story with you and your symptoms as the main focus. The plot thickens: She educates you about the nature of the physical imbalance implied by your answers and explains the action of the recommended nutritional supplements aimed at your specific hypothetical problem. She tells you how to know by your response whether it is working and how to recognize when you've gone too far and should stop the intervention. Well, I was desperate. I decided to follow her regimen to the letter. Surprise! Her predictions were absolutely true to my own responses. If she says you can feel a supplement start to work in 10 minutes, then that is what it does. If she saya it takes months, then it does. BUT IT WORKED for me. It is 18 months since I first followed her advice and after a year or more of no supplements, some symptoms began to return. I'm not kidding when I tell you that the results are just as dramatic this time. I'm sold on her advice. One important result of reading this book is that I've learned to differentiate between when I am having a physical problem and when it is an emotional problem. Once you know this, you are more adept at choosing whether to seek psychotherapy, nutritional therapy, or hormonal therapy to address your psychological symptoms. No kidding, this book has set the ground work for me to have a similar quality of life in my post menopausal years as I had as a healthy young person. It restores hope because it applies logic and science. Another helpful thing she said that seems obvious in retrospect is that the "minimal daily requirements" are just that: Minimal to Prevent Symptoms of Disease. Think about it. These guidelines do not spell out "Optimal Daily Requirements" for good health. One note of caution: If you follow her advise too haphazardly or don't stick to the regimen, you will have less than a dramatic response and you will quickly relapse. Really do it. Take the so called "megadoses" for a month or two, while observing the safety precautions she spells-out and you will be amazed. I was. My body told me that I was on the right track almost right away so my initial misgivings about taking supplements were quickly allayed by the obvious better energy and health I was achieving. When I began, I had been so exhausted that for many years, even mild exercise left me feeling wiped out. Now, I am very active again, my depression and anxiety is minimal and I am now rebuilding my physical fitness. I did check out the assertions she makes with other articles in her subject areas, and although I am a lay person, her advise does appear to check out with mainstream research. Good luck! I've reread this book 5-6 times and am still consulting it....more info
  • It Worked for Me Too
    I have taken almost every antidepressant on the market over the past 15 years. I have often felt I was "born depressed". While I could make a case that these meds have saved my life, the side effects of these drugs were very unpleasant and I have sought (unsuccessfully) to stop taking them numerous times. It is only with the wisdom of this book and the addition of the recommended supplements that I can say that I am doing AS WELL OR BETTER than I ever did on medication.

    I highly recomnmend this book. Try it yourself and see if it works for you....more info
  • Useful Book, But Very Weak on Side Effects & Cautions
    Amino acids offer great potential as natural treatments for depression. The Mood Cure offers a simple plan for assessing mood and determining which amino acids may be helpful. The book will be useful for basic depression, but probably not bi-polar or more serious conditions.

    This book may be of special interest to addicts and alcoholics, as the author founded a holistic recovery clinic and works primarily with addicts. It should also interest those who are trying to lose weight. The amino acids tryptophan and 5-HTP can help reduce carbohydrate cravings. The book also offers dietary advice, favoring a high-protein low-carb approach.

    The author is not a scientist or a doctor. She is a psychotherapist. This is a practical, how-to guide, with little discussion of amino acid science.

    The book's biggest flaw is that is offers little info on side effects or contraindications for the amino acids. Most what she does offer is presented in later chapters, long after the amino acid regimens have already been defined.

    The amino acid GABA, in particular, can cause shortness of breath, skin tingling and worsen hypoglycemia.

    When taking amino acids, you are modifying your brain chemistry. This should not be done carelessly. I recommend that you do independent research on the safety of these supplements before getting started. If you take prescription drugs, you will need to be especially cautious.

    Amino acid therapy can be simple for those who need only one amino acid, but can be challenging for those with multiple problem areas. I recommend you fix what you consider to be your worst area first, starting each amino acid one at a time. Some readers will need assistance from traditional or alternative health care practitioners....more info
  • Online alternative
    Those wary of purchasing this book, but generally interested in the nutritional treatment of depression and anxiety, may want to check out The Way Up from Down, a book by Priscilla Slagle, is similar in theme and general info to The Mood Cure, but it isn't plagued by as many of the problems other reviewers cite in Julia Ross's work. Slagle posted her book online for free, so at the very least it's worth a look. The website seems partly designed to sell supplements, but the book itself is relatively free of specific promotions....more info
  • I didn't think it would work either, but it really did...
    I was, of course, skeptical of this process and how quickly the author said the amino acids can improve moods, but it really really works. This is personal, but I was right on the decision line of suicide and after using the amino acids for two days, I no longer feel like giving in. I know, two days seems like a short time to go from the edge of death to being mostly fine, but it's really true. Amazingly true. I'm not making an effort to stop thinking about death, rather I'm noticing the differences in my mood by lack of hateful and dark thoughts. I'm not over-emotional, nor am I void of emotion. This is the best thing I can think of for people who either don't care to see a psychiatrist (can't afford it) or who don't want to take prescription medicine (I have no health insurance) for help w/ depression. I was amazed that it worked. Many things in her book related to how I feel about myself and about my history, such as starving and dieting. The book is simple, easy to use, and starts w/ a helpful quiz. I agree w/ the others who have said that the author's book is harsh on vegetarian proteins and on soy, which isn't helpful to people who are vegetarians, such as myself. She also recommends trying diets that are unproven in effectivess (blood-type diet) and she makes over-generalized comments, but I took what I could from the book and it has had a huge effect on my life. I've not followed everything she suggests (I'm still eating wheat and soy as these aren't problems for me and I'm taking my aminos when I feel is best for me, not necessarily on a schedule). I don't know that I would be able to make progress in healing from my depression and my eating disorder if it weren't for the suggestions in her book....more info
  • science made simple
    This is one of the best book on the mechanics of the body. It is totally different from everthing we have been taught, but it is all backed up by science. I am recommending it to all my family members and friends....more info
  • Manna From Heaven!!!
    This book is a God send!! As someone who has struggled with mood disorders for my entire life, I can say that no therapy or medication has been nearly so successful as the supplement therapy recommended in this book. I have never felt more energetic, been more happy and productive, or had such a positive outlook on things. My chronic fatigue and mood swings have gone almost completely away, and my husband can't believe the change. If you have mood problems, get this book!! It's easy to read and very eye opening. Eating disorder??? The Diet Cure (also by Julia Ross) is also highly recommended!!...more info
  • Enlightening
    This book gave me an insight into my bouts of depression and the pms problems of my daughter. We were able to come up with helpful solutions to these problems....more info
  • Buy Something Else. ANYTHING Else!
    I'm a self-help junkie and at age fifty-eight, have read just about everything out there. So I'm going to keep this short and sweet. This book is useless. I read through it, shook my head and handed it to my husband. He skimmed it and gave it to our daughter, a PhD candidate in Psychology. She said it was . . . I can't print what she said.

    Please don't bother. The book is just plain bad. It's now in our recycling bin. It's not even worth trying to re-sell, and I don't want to waste anyone else's energy by giving my copy to them....more info
  • Treat depression and anxiety.
    Treat the symptoms of depression and anxiety with scientifically proven vitamins and dietary supplements....more info


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