Supplements or drugs

June 24, 2009 | Supplements or drugs

“I don’t really want to be taking all these drugs but my Doctor said to go off all supplements.” This is a statement I hear every week when I talk to people on the phone about their health needs. In discussing tinnitus, hearing loss, stress and sleep, many other health issues come in to the conversation, and I like to take these opportunities to help people think in more depth about their health.

Many people feel they have been healthy all their lives, and tell me they have eaten a good diet and never had to take medication. Some of them may have been taking a few supplements to give them that added boost. Then something happens, they have virus or a stressful period, an operation, gain weight or are diagnosed with high cholesterol. The Doctor puts them on a couple of drugs and tells them to stop taking their supplements in case they interfere. Most people comply.

This is the point in the road where Western, pharmaceutically-based medicine takes over your life and you are no longer in the driver’s seat. Is there an alternative?

In my view there definitely is. I think we make a big mistake when we divorce Western medical health care from wholistic, natural health care. Unfortunately these two philosophical approaches to health took different paths a few hundred years ago and have been diverging ever since.

The Western medical approach, officially sanctioned by first the Church, then the government and the pharmaceutical establishment, now represents worldwide financial interests of trillions of dollars. It is ingrained with decades of conventional medical training and held up by the research establishment, with methodology and procedures held in high regard by mainstream society. The values and beliefs of this methodology a reinforced by the media and the legal profession. All of this makes it very difficult to question the views espoused by this orthodox establishment.

The wholistic, natural therapy approach has a much longer history, but has been marginalised in the last couple of hundred years. The traditional knowledge of herbalists, acupuncturists, yogis, homoeopaths and meditators goes back thousands of years and numerous modalities practiced today draw on this ancient knowledge. The societies that used these approaches existed for many thousands of years and by comparison and industrialized, drug-based society has a track record of only 100 years.

During this time we have overcome some of the health challenges that came with industrialization, such as contagious disease (via sanitation) and infection (via antibiotics.) We have made enormous advances in surgery and learned how to artificially prolong life. At the same time many chronic and incurable diseases, cancers, obesity, tinnitus, hearing loss and immune deficiencies are on the rise as our bodies struggle to cope with an onslaught of toxic chemicals, noise, stress and pollutants that have saturated our environment in the last few decades.

Because there is very little integration between Western and traditional medicine many patients are confused. The public, you, suddenly faced with a health condition you know little about, find yourself swinging between the Western trained medical doctor and a natural therapist who may be giving you opposing advice.

Many doctors are quite ready to say “stop taking your supplements,” and being nervous, trusting that the Doctor knows the most about your health needs, you do. The natural therapist is unlikely to say “stop taking the drugs” for fear of legal reprisals, because the medical establishment certainly has the law quite firmly on their side. Also, because drugs often have an immediate and fairly drastic effect on controlling symptoms, you may need to take other steps to improve your health and increase your supplementation before you can safely go off the drugs.

But the question hovers in your mind, “which is really best for me? Do I have to keep taking these drugs? What side effects will they have, and am I doing the best thing to support my natural health?”

The answer lies in informing yourself much more deeply about how to take a long-term approach to building radiant, vibrant health.

When you study the available literature on natural health you will learn that taking high doses of supplements strengthens your body and improves your chances of recovering from long-term disease, and also supports you to withstand many of the drug treatments given for serious disease. You will learn how diet and massive supplementation can be used to prevent most of the chronic diseases facing people today.

Those who follow this path of natural health education find they are no longer intimidated by the doctor’s advice and that having a broader perspective, they may choose which aspects of Western medicine they wish to use, and exclude others. For example, someone with cancer may opt for surgery but then strengthen their system with diet and supplements rather than having chemotherapy or radiation treatment. Someone with a pre-diabetic condition may regain normal insulin levels through the right supplements and following a diet like the Zone. Someone with cardiovascular disease may reverse it with oral chelation and avoid the need for bypass surgery.

One of the key differences between Western medicine and natural medicine is that natural medicine focuses on prevention, keeping the health tuned to optimum levels throughout life. The Western medical approach tolerates a slow degeneration of health, accepting this is normal, and then uses crisis management techniques and serious disease sets in. For this reason it is always difficult to change horses at the last minute, because prevention needs to be done well in advance.

A new field of medicine called Environmental Medicine as forming a link between Eastern and Western medical practice. Many doctors who are noticing the effects on health of the many cumulative toxins in today’s environment are now beginning to integrate natural therapy approaches into their practices. While the environmental health field has received only limited attention from mainstream media and medicine, there are some brilliant pioneering health educators such as Phillip Day, Peter Dingle and Eve Hillary who, through their writing and speaking, are making the public aware of this transition.

I have a special interest in helping people who want to feel more empowered and strengthen their natural radiant health over a lifetime to get the information they need.

To learn more about my regular environmental health updates and educational health resources subscribe now to my Healthy Homes E-Zine and start taking charge of your and your family’s long term health for the future.

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