Do humans need drugs to be healthy?
It’s an interesting question and not one you may have ever been asked. Intuitively most people say ‘No’ though when we look at the society in which we live we see a problem.
A friend of mine is a primary school teacher and she estimates that about 1 in 2 of the children between the ages of 10-12 are on a prescription medication for learning and behaviour problems of some sort. Her estimates match that of a study from the US where over 50% of children surveyed had used at least one medication in the preceding 7 days. How can this be normal? Are we really this broken that half of our children need to be drugged?
More and more we live lives filled with pharmaceuticals that are supposed to make us healthy. During your lifetime you have an 80% chance of being diagnosed with a chronic disease that you will probably be prescribed a medication for and 40% of us will need two or more drugs.
Medications can save lives when administered appropriately and we have to question whether that is what is happening right now. The problem is that the drugs don’t make as much difference as you think.
• 1,5 million people a year are injured by medication in the US.
• Aggressive lowering of blood sugar with drugs in diabetics actually causes deaths.
• The contribution of chemotherapy to survival in cancer patients is under 3% and the most common side effect of chemotherapy is cancer.
Even the common anti-inflammatory, diclofenac, that you can buy over the counter has been found to be dangerous and many have called for it to be removed from the market entirely. “Don’t wait for your doctor to take you off it. Take yourself off it.” Says Prof David Henry, professor of medicine at the University of Toronto and CEO Toronto’s Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences.
Where does health come from?
Let me ask you a question: If you rated your health at 6/10, where you felt ok and didn’t have any symptoms, which drug would take you to move toward 10/10? None. No drug can create health because health does not come from the outside. Health is an inside job.
The medical system is like the fire department. The firemen have axes and hoses that they use to bash down doors and put out fires. Once the fire is out you have a ruin of a house but at least the fire is out.
If a house were not on fire but looking shabby, would you call the firemen to bash down the doors with their axes and drench the house with their hoses? Might it be smarter to call a builder, electrician and plumber to come in and rebuild the house?
The medical system has drugs and surgery as its tools just like firemen have axes and hoses: appropriate in critical situations but probably very harmful in non-critical situations.
Getting contractors to repair and maintain a house is the only way to get it and to keep it looking good. Vitalistic Chiropractors are like good contractors, rebuilding broken down mind/bodies and helping to maintain thriving ones.
You can’t out medicate a poor lifestyle.
Vernacchio, L, J P Kelly, D W Kaufman, and A A Mitchell, ‘Medication Use Among Children’, Pediatrics, 124 (2009)
Aspden, Phillip, ed., Preventing Medical Errors (Washinton DC: Institute of Medicine: Committee on Identifying and Preventing Medication Errors, 2007)
Action to Control Cardiovascular Risk in Diabetes Study Group, Hertzel C Gerstein, Hertzel C Gerstein, Michael E Miller, Michael E Miller, and others, ‘Effects of Intensive Glucose Lowering in Type 2 Diabetes.’, New England Journal of Medicine, 358 (2008), 2545–59
Morgan, Graeme, Robyn Ward, and Michael Barton, ‘The Contribution of Cytotoxic Chemotherapy to 5-Year Survival in Adult Malignancies.’, Clinical Oncology (Royal College of Radiologists (Great Britain)), 16 (2004), 549–60