Cocaine Dependence (Addiction) and N-Acetylcysteine (NAC)

Cocaine Dependence (Addiction) and N-Acetylcysteine (NAC)
N-acetylcysteine (NAC) 1200-2400 mg per day with or without food helped those who had quit cocaine stay away from trying it again and reduced the craving. Side effects were mainly gastrointestinal, GERD like (heart burn…) symptoms, especially at higher doses and on an empty stomach.

Addictive substances in general lead to increased dopamine and glutamate levels in the brain. NAC restores balance to glutamate transmission.  NAC increases cystine which displaces glutamate in brain cells, bringing back glutamate balance, and reducing cravings and impulsivity.

A double-blind placebo-controlled trial of N-acetylcysteine in the treatment of cocaine dependence.” Am J Addict. 2013 Sep-Oct;22(5):443-52. 50973 (10/2015)

Steven D. LaRowe, PhD
Medical University of South Carolina
Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
Center for Drug and Alcohol Programs
Charleston, SC 29425
843-324-4264  / 843-572-1931(FAX)

Other important areas to address in reducing addiction and
cravings is to have:
– Slow time-released blood sugar by avoiding processed foods,
especially processed carbohydrates with added fats and sugar.
– Eat your grains in a bowl – not in baked or packaged foods.
– Eat low glycemic carbohydrates in their whole state such as
beans, lentils, peas, whole grains, squash, yams, sweat potatoes,
and yes whole potatoes can be used.
– B complex 50-100 mg/d
– Vitamins C 1000-5000 mg/d
– Adrenal support (B5 500-1000 mg, Vit C 1000-500 mg, magnesium 200-500 mg, Zinc 20-40 mg)

Be and Stay Well,


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