Core Psych Blog Review

The featured blog is the ‘CorePsych Blog‘ by psychiatrist Dr Charles Parker. Parker focuses on the relationship between mental illnesses and biology, whether this is through environmental pathogens, nutritional deficiencies or metabolic changes in the brain. Parker uses SPECT scanning in his routine clinical practice and has thus accumulated lots of experience in this area. However with regards to his mentor in this area, Parker describes the remarkable Dr Amen thus:-

‘In everyday clinical practice, he has now matched over 30,000 scan results with clinical observations in his offices’

He also links to Dr Amen’s website here. The use of SPECT imaging gives in clinical practice gives Dr Parker insights into common psychiatric disorders. He also writes about other investigations used in the physical work-up of a patient. From his experience, Dr Parker writes that Attention Deficit Disorder is underdiagnosed and notes that the SSRI’s can dysregulate dopamine levels with potential clinical implications. He discusses his views on the words codependency and recovery in this amusing article. The effect of environmental pathogens is discussed here. The relationship between Iodine deficiency and mental health is examined here (also here, here and here). A discussion of Vitamin D is given here. Parker’s blog is  interesting, distinctive and I think representative of  ‘biological psychiatry’ although psychiatry is inseparable from biology. Parker’s blog provides unique insights into the potential role of detailed and varied (sometimes esoteric) investigations.


If you have any comments, you can leave them below or alternatively e-mail


The comments made here represent the opinions of the author and do not represent the profession or any body/organisation. The comments made here are not meant as a source of medical advice and those seeking medical advice are advised to consult with their own doctor. The author is not responsible for the contents of any external sites that are linked to in this blog.


  1. […] Core Psych Blog Review ? The Amazing World of Psychiatry: A … By Dr Justin Marley From his experience, Dr Parker writes that Attention Deficit Disorder is underdiagnosed and notes that the SSRI?s can dysregulate dopamine levels with potential clinical implications. He discusses his views on the words codependency and … The Amazing World of Psychiatry:… – & […]


  2. Justin,
    Many thanks for your kind review and articulate condensation of so many various posts!

    The world of psychiatry is dramatically changing, and yes, while the mind-focus is so biologically oriented now, so few go past the neurotransmitters to look at the body that carries that brain – and the real metabolic antecedents that ebb and flow with the passage of time. And, BTW, yes, we do still experience many that envision primal screaming as the end point to a good session. Woof, woof… Freud passed on that cathartic intervention before 1900… so it’s time to move on to precision.

    So many of our current psych labels are reductionistic, and appear to provide an end to themselves, but are only the tips of ominous icebergs, floating in an ever increasing sea of chemical exposure. The exciting part of all this: the laboratory and the scan evidence does increasingly guide informed practice – from ADD to Asperger’s, to simple memory problems of middle age.

    The science is all about swimming further upstream.

    Your readers will be interested in CorePsych Radio, as I am sending out thru the Internet these first 10 hours on ADHD alone – from the limited descriptive labels to the casually mixed medications to the multiple comorbid diagnostic considerations – it’s all quite responsive to treatment if we simply think and react more scientifically and more precisely.

    Thanks again for your thoughtful remarks,


    • Dear Charles,

      Many thanks for taking the time to comment and for your many interesting points.

      The role of other systems in the body is incontestable but at the same time, such relationships are immensely complex. I have been interested and reassured to read of your experiences in navigating through this complexity with your approach and technology. I also often wonder at how practice could be augmented with artificial intelligence solutions since computers are extremely good at managing large volumes of information and processing this very quickly and accurately. Biological psychiatry deals with the type of information that lends itself to further analysis of this type. There are also interesting collaborative internet projects such as the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative and so we are living in exciting times!

      Meanwhile I look forward to continuing to read your blog and listening to your podcasts!




  3. Chuck,

    Thanks ever so much – I’ve also added you to my blogroll in addition to the review!



    • Dear Feenteshaitte,

      Many thanks for your comments which will no doubt add to this article. Would you be able to clarify who OP is and what it is that ‘can be true’. Many thanks and I look forward to your responses




  4. Dr. Parker,

    As we know, there are many overlapping similarities when dealing with cognitive health issues such as Alzheimer’s, autism, ADHD, and depression. On-going research is demonstrating that specific lifestyle factors, such as a nutritious diet, exercise, social engagement, mentally stimulating pursuits, and natural supplements represent holistic treatment strategies that can significantly alter the incidence of these cognitive impairments. Research has found that the same things that kill the body, also destroy the brain. Lifestyle factors that are needed to maintain a healthy body, are also needed to maintain a healthy brain – regardless of the brain disorder. Researchers have recently uncovered what is now known to be Miracle Grow for the brain, and the most impressive thing about it, is that it is totally within the realm of our personal lifestyle as to how much we will benefit from this brain Miracle Grow. Recent research has also uncovered that the foods we elect to eat will either increase or decrease the amount of inflammation found within our cardiovascular system to include whether or not amyloid plaque will build up within our brain, which is also directly related to our dietary and lifestyle habits. The research is there, but few of us realize the POWER lifestyle habits have in preventing cognitive impairments, while optimizing overall health. Surely we would make tremendous progress in our crusade against all chronic disease, if we only adapted those habits now known to optimize mental and whole body health. Even though the ability to control our lives is directly related to the health of our brain, in our society, the health of our brain is at significant risk because of those very habits we continually practice as Americans. Proper lifestyle factors, on the other hand, will cause the brain to GROW and LEARN optimally because they are the way man is designed to live.

    Here’s a letter, I recently sent to a couple of local school systems concerning nutrition and exercise, Nick Tompanis

    Dear Sir:

    If we were handed an opportunity that would (not could) radically alter the way children learn by significantly improving their learning curve, not through pharmaceuticals drugs, but through dietary and lifestyle routines now known to optimize brain performance, what would we do with that knowledge? Is it really possible to improve math, reading, and writing scores, to increase student concentration and alertness, to have fewer behavioral problems, while reducing levels of anxiety and stress, simply by changing the way we live? A fit body IS a fit brain, and by changing the way we live, we would change much more than we think possible . . .

    While school systems continue to struggle to raise their student SOL scores, how many folks around you have offered you advice on how to DRAMATICALLY raise student SOL scores simply by altering their lifestyle habits? Earlier this month, I made a presentation to a group of 50 teachers/educators in Virginia Beach, one of whom is the principal of Salem Elementary School. The first thing she asked me after completing my presentation, was how much am I asking to make the same presentation to her entire school staff? Why? Because she immediately realized the impact these principles would have on children’s health and learning curves. Yes, students are very capable of dramatically improving their SOL and school test scores when they are living their lives through habits that promote optimal health. The material I present is far from being unattainable or miraculous, but they are strategies schools systems have not yet put into practice as lifetime goals that truly need to be implemented in order to redirect student’s lives for the better, while dramatically improving their rates of learning. If interested, I can make this presentation, A Fit Body IS a Fit Mind, to any small group or large group given a period of about 60 minutes (or longer), a multi-media projector, and a large dry-erase board. I am eager to assist any school system, if given the opportunity. I have taught special education for thirty years, and have also taught many classes on nutrition through Virginia Beach’s Adult Learning Center for the past seven years. Here is a listing of the current courses I offer at the ALC facility, :

    • 3100 Stay Sharp Naturally!
    • 3101 Holistic School Success!
    • 3102 Personal Nutrition Coach!
    • 3103 Holistic Health Makeover!
    • 3104 Prevent Illness Naturally!

    Thank you for your attention.

    I hope I can be of assistance,

    Nicholas Tompanis, Nutrition Consultant

    “To eat is a necessity, but to eat intelligently is an art.” – La Rochefoucauld

    “He that takes medicine and neglects diet, wastes the skill of the physician.” – Chinese Proverb


  5. I was just chatting with my coworker about this last week at the resturant. Don’t remember how in the world we got on the subject really, they brought it up. I do remember having a amazing chicken salad with ranch on it. I digress…


  6. Reading a number of your blogposts I truly found this one to be great. I’ve a weblog as well and want to repost a few snips of your respective content on my own blog site. Would it be okay if I do that as long I reference your blog or build a back link towards the write-up I took the snip from? If not I realize and would never do it without your agreement . I have book marked this particular post to twitter and flickr account intended for reference. Regardless appreciate it either way!


  7. I thought I’d share a quote with you from U.G. Krishnamurti that pertains to your blog, please don’t take offense. “You assume that there is such a thing as truth, you assume that there is such a thing as reality (ultimate or otherwise) – it is that assumption that is creating the problem, the suffering for you.”


  8. Many thanks Derek, the feeling is mutual – excellent site over here… today working on second ed of ADHD Med Rules… I’m on a mission to get tighter on the details!


  9. You’re blogging has really come on when I look back over previous posts. Actually I arrived here from a forum on an unrelated topic. Worth surfing sometimes. Thanks.


  10. An individual on the far more amazing sites Ive looked at. Thanks a great deal for trying to keep the web on topic. You have guts. I mean it. Please keep writing mainly because with out it the online world is unquestionably lacking in knowledge. 😉


  11. Hello

    I am allergic to dairy as well as gluten and I am off both since a year and I am gremlin very good.I always used to be a little hyper. As a vegan i always have methylcobalamin tablet daily and it helps me a lot.Recently I tried vitamin d3 and now i am into withdrawal symptoms kind of. I felt this same way when I left dairy. Does vitamin d give withdrawal symptoms?I am so anxious all the time. It’s been 24 days. how long will the withdrawal symptoms last?


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