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Integrative Psychiatry

Natural Remedies for Depression by Will Van Derveer, MD

By November 14, 2020December 3rd, 2020No Comments

Did you know that depression is already the leading cause of disability worldwide?

That’s a huge statement. And that’s from 2011. According to the World Health Organization, it’s predicted that by 2030, depression will be the leading cause of Global Burden of Disease.

Let’s watch this video together with Dr. Will Van Derveer as he talks about the Natural Remedies for Depression.


Got 300 million people worldwide with depression and one third of them are considered to be in tremor resistances was a headline. From TIME magazine in August of 2017, an article on the advent of ketamine treatment for depression, this is a big deal. Chronic depression is a significant problem. About 10% of women in the United States experienced depression and 30% of men have suffered from significant period of depression in their lifetime. Depression is already the leading cause of disability worldwide. That’s a huge statement. And that’s from 2011. And it’s predicted that by 2030, depression will be the leading cause of Global Burden of Disease. According to the World Health Organization.

More than 60% of people on SSRIs have sexual side effects. This is well known. If you’re a prescriber of psychiatric medications, you’re watching this, you know that this is troubling, as people get less depressed, they tend to feel better and want to be more sexually active and enjoy sexuality, which is an important part of health, of course. So this becomes a problem. And then there are other side effects as well.

Looking at root causes of depression is relatively new in psychiatry, it’s a really exciting development, it’s a new movement toward actually looking at what’s really going on in the brain, and what parts of physiology are actually a part of depression. And not only looking at the serotonin theory of depression, not only looking at the neurotransmitter theory, but looking at inflammation looking at other root causes.

In IPI, we teach that the degree of wellness is defined by optimization in these three different areas. So the mind, lifestyle and body. And, of course, it’s a dynamic balance. So, you know, a person could have quite a bit of health in their mind, and have a terrible diet, for example. Or they can have optimal exercise and optimal diet, but have a tremendous amount of negative thinking or unresolved trauma in their mind.

We’re going to get into a great number of other areas for the treatment of depression. I want to mention a few of them here. We’ve covered nutraceuticals, for the most part in this talk, the basics toolkit that is and then of course, mindfulness and compassion practices can be very effective for depression, exercise programs, obviously very important in relapse prevention, and got protocols. Again, a really fun area to explore in terms of gut brain connection, not a part of this talk but very important in terms of looking at people who do not respond to the tools I’ve already presented in this talk.

Frederick Barrett is a cognitive neuroscientist with training in behavioral pharmacology, and the Associate Director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Psychedelic and Consciousness Research. Dr. Barrett has been conducting psychedelic research at Johns Hopkins University since 2013, and his research in healthy participants and in patients with mood and substance use disorders focuses on the psychological and neurological mechanisms underlying the enduring therapeutic and other effects of psychedelic drugs. In 2017, he received an NIH “R03” grant as Principal Investigator to investigate biological mechanisms of psilocybin effects, the first federally funded research since the 1970s administering a classic psychedelic to people with psychedelic effects as the primary focus. He has developed measures of subjective effects of psychedelic drugs, and has also published first-in-human studies characterizing the acute and enduring effects of psilocybin on the brain. He is currently leading clinical trials to investigate the use of psilocybin to treat patients with major depressive disorder and co-occurring alcohol use disorder, and he is leading a number of ongoing studies aimed at better understanding the psychological, biological, and neural mechanisms underlying therapeutic efficacy of psychedelic drugs.

Will Van Derveer, MD is co-founder of Integrative Psychiatry Institute (IPI), along with friend and colleague Keith Kurlander, MA. He co-created IPI as an expression of what he stands for. First, that anyone can heal, and second that we medical providers must embrace our own healing journeys in order to fully command our potency as healers.

Dr. Van Derveer spent the last 20 years innovating and testing a comprehensive approach to addressing psychiatric challenges which transcends the conventional model he learned in medical school at Vanderbilt University and residency at University of Colorado, while deeply engaging his own healing path.

He founded the Integrative Psychiatric Healing Center in in 2001 in Boulder, CO, where he currently practices. Dr. Van Derveer regards unresolved emotional trauma as the most significant root cause of psychiatric symptoms in integrative psychiatry practice, along with gut issues, hormone imbalances, inflammation, mitochondrial dysfunction, and other functional medicine challenges. He is trained in Somatic Experiencing, EMDR, Internal Family Systems, and other psychotherapy techniques. His current clinical passion is psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy, which he mentors interested doctors in providing. An avid meditator, he has been a meditation instructor since 2004.

For the past several years Dr. Van Derveer has taught psychiatrists and other psychiatric providers integrative psychiatry in a number of settings, including course directing the CU psychiatry residents’ course as well as with Scott Shannon and Janet Settle at the Psychiatry MasterClass. In addition to his clinical work and teaching, he was co-investigator in 2016 a Phase II randomized clinical trial, sponsored by the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS). He continues to support this protocol, now in a Phase III clinical trial under break-through designation by FDA.

Dr. Van Derveer is a diplomate of the American Board of Integrative and Holistic Medicine (ABoIHM) since 2013, and he was board certified in the first wave of diplomates of the new American Board of Integrative Medicine (ABIM) in 2016.