James Ott joins the program to discuss the Word of Wisdom. James uses his expertise in addiction recovery to help us understand the issue from a clinical perspective. He also walks through a brief history of the Word of Wisdom.
Here is James’ bio in his own words as found on the Red Willow Counseling website
“I started my professional career in 1993 working with chronically mentally ill persons in a community mental health center in Portland, Oregon. I received my Master’s of Social Work degree in 1997 from New Mexico State University, whereupon I worked in a number of mental health agencies providing help to individuals and their families in crisis, providing services to the homeless, and connecting people with HIV/AIDS to health resources. After moving back to Utah, I was employed with the University of Utah Neuropsychiatric Institute (UNI) as a clinical social worker. I worked at UNI for 10 years providing assessments, utilization review, individual and family counseling, group therapy, and case management. I worked for the last 4 years on the medical detox unit; specifically helping people through the detox process, providing education to family members about addiction and treatment, and setting up appropriate services for when they discharge. I was the daily psychotherapy group facilitator and also the point therapist for the Interpersonal Reconstructive Therapy (IRT) clinic. At UNI I was able to gain understanding and skills in working with people with a wide variety of mental illness, which increased my competency and compassion for all those whose lives are impacted by mental illness and addiction.
Since 2010 I have contracted my services with a medical drug and alcohol detox center and an addiction treatment facility. I was also recruited as the Clinical Director for a startup substance abuse residential treatment center (drug and alcohol rehab), where I created the clinical programming, authorization procedures to secure payment from insurance companies; and the policy and procedure for the day to day operations–including managing the patient medications. I also supervised all clinical and frontline staff. My most recent endeavor was to write and review all policy and procedure for several local residential treatment centers and take them through the steps necessary to receive Joint Commission accreditation.
I started my private practice in 2000 which is my main passion. In this, I am able to support people directly in getting well. I enjoy working with people individually and with their families in identifying unhealthy patterns and changing them. As part of this, I provide education about addiction and mental illness to individuals and families as well as church clergy, to strengthen the family and stop enabling and co-dependent actions, however well intentioned.
I also provide services as an interventionist, working with families to assist a loved one to receive treatment for substance abuse or process addictions, whether in residential care or outpatient groups. I am trained in the ARISE invitational intervention model; which has been clinically proven to be the most effective method for having an addicted person admit and complete treatment. I am also well connected to local substance abuse treatment programs, and network with a number of national referral sources to help people identify the most appropriate treatment program for the addicted person.”
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There’s a lot of problematic Word of Wisdom items that we don’t currently follow but perhaps we should but where do you draw the line? Your guest mentioned processed flour, refined sugars, prescription drugs with their litany of adverse side effects, opioids, etc. but what about vaccinations with aborted fetal tissue? Hormone-injected meats? GMO grains and produce? What about plastic packaging that contaminates our food with chemicals and toxins? While we’re on the subject, what about ergonomic correctness, i.e. squatting vs. sitting on the porcelain throne? (see “Nature Knows Best” by Jonathan Isbit) There are all kinds of Western maladies that are unknown to cultures where they squat to do their business as the human body was designed instead of walking around with partially-evacuated bowels like we do in the West which leads to all kinds of expensive medical issues later. What about substances we should perhaps be taking that are glaringly absent from the Western diet like Vitamin B17 that occurs naturally in apricot seeds and which purportedly attacks pre-cancerous cells preventing cancer altogether? (See “World without cancer” by G. Edward Griffin) What about carcinogenic underarm antiperspirant with asbestiform fibers that women put right next to breast tissue every morning? Do our LDS general authorities who are mainstream medical professionals even acknowledge these things as substantive health issues in the first place?