Dr Abram Hoffer and Bill W Alcoholics Anonymous
Ever since I met Bill W, the cofounder of Alcoholics Anonymous and we became close friends, I have had a personal interest in the treatment of alcoholism. Bill taught that there were three components to the treatment of alcoholism: spiritual, mental and medical. AA provided a spiritual home for alcoholics that many could not find anywhere else and helped them sustain abstinence. But for many AA alone was not enough; not everyone in AA had achieved a comfortable sobriety.
Bill recognized that the other two components were important. When he heard of our use of niacin for treating alcoholics, he became very enthusiastic about it because niacin gave these unfortunate patients immense relief from their chronic depression and other physical and mental complaints. Andrew Saul’s article on alcoholism outlines the importance of the nutritional factors which have been shown to be very successful on treating this condition. When alcoholics are able to abstain on their own, this is the way to go. Some of them can even become social drinkers on a very small scale.
I have not found many who could. But I think that if started on the program very early, many more could achieve normalcy. I know of many alcoholics who did not want to stop drinking, but did agree to take niacin. Over the years, they gradually were able to reduce their intake until they brought it under control. I suspect that treatment centers using those ideas will be made available one day, and will be much more successful than the standard treatment today. This all too often still consists of dumping them into hospitals and letting them dry out, with severe pain and suffering. When they are discharged, most go right back to the alcohol, the most dangerous and widely used street drug available without a prescription. – A. Hoffer.)