Healthy alternatives to prescription drugs

Published on: June 28, 2019

Learn about healthy alternatives to prescription drugs


Lots of people worry that every time they see the doctor, they’re prescribed a different drug, and some folks take so many prescriptions, they have a hard time keeping track of them. There are, however, healthy alternatives.

Debbie Caneen, president of the South Shore Coalition for Mental Health and Aging, invites you to learn about alternatives to prescription drugs at the coalition’s annual banquet July 16 at the Sun City Center Atrium. Tickets are available at the Sun City Center Area Chamber of Commerce and must be purchased by July 12.

Hillsborough County Commissioner Stacy White, a doctor of pharmacy and practicing pharmacist for more than 20 years, and five other experts will discuss some healthier alternatives to drugs July 16 at the SouthShore Coalition for Mental Health and Aging’s annual fundraising banquet. The event will

take place from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. in the Florida Room of the Sun City Center Atrium building, 1009 N. Pebble Beach Blvd.

The event will feature White as keynote speaker and a five-member panel of experts, including Dawn Addison, an advanced registered nurse practitioner; nutritionist Shirley M. Sullivan of SouthShore Wellness; Tina Patch, president of the nonprofit C.A.T.E. Foundation; Community Resource Deputy Jeff Merry of the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office; and Dr. Nomen Azeem, who is double board certified as a specialist in interventional pain and sports medicine.

White will talk about the current status of opioid addiction in Hillsborough County, and Addison will cover how DNA screening can help you free yourself from “being a guinea pig” by determining which drugs are most effective in treating specific conditions. Sullivan, who is “passionate about anything natural, holistic or alternative,” will discuss a gentler approach to pain management through food-based, holistic alternatives to opioids.

Hillsborough County Commissioner Stacy White, District 4, will be the keynote speaker at the South Shore Coalition for Mental Health and Aging’s July 16 fundraiser. Five other experts will also be on hand.

Patch also will be discussing opioids. She has seen first-hand how opioid use can destroy lives.“I will basically be covering natural alternatives to pharmaceuticals, specifically hemp-derived CBD products and how they can naturally relieve pain and many ailments typically treated with drugs that aren’t always necessary,” Patch said.

Merry will cover opioid use in Sun City Center through the eyes of law enforcement. And Azeem will discuss how he uses cutting-edge technology like neuromodulation, minimally invasive surgery, trigger point injections and virtual reality for pain management without the use of opioids.

Each guest will have the opportunity to submit a question or two to the panel.

A catered buffet is included. The menu will feature a freshly tossed fruit salad; chopped salad with assorted toppings, like bleu cheese crumble; glazed walnut and cranberry raisins; herbed grilled chicken breast with grilled asparagus, zucchini and squash; eggplant rollatini

stuffed with spinach Florentine; fresh garlic, basil and olive oil pasta; assorted rolls and butter; Tiramisu parfaits; and a beverage.

Tickets for the event and meal are $20 and must be purchased by Friday, July 12. They are available at the Sun City Center Area Chamber of Commerce, 1561 Sun City Center Plaza, or at

All proceeds will go to the SouthShore Coalition for Mental Health and Aging, which uses the funds to cover the cost of its free memory screenings at Sun Towers, Valencia Lakes and the United Methodist Church of Sun City Center, and related educational materials it provides. More than 300 screenings have been completed over the past few years.