Ask Your Doctor If…
How often do we see a TV ad when you are instructed to “Ask your doctor if this medication is right for you?”
The USA and New Zealand are apparently unique in allowing such pharmaceutical medication advertising on their TV screens.
And how clever are the advertising agencies when they weave a delightful visual story while the voice-over runs through the litany of possible (and often horrendous) side effects, hoping you won’t notice.
A friend of mine has pointed out that the current system in the USA – encouraging us to “ask your doctor” about pharmaceuticals to treat “your IBS” (or diabetes or COPD or fibromyalgia or seasonal allergies or arthritis or any other ailment on that long, long list) – is actually teaching us to own “ill health” while persuading us into believing the doctors know best and that taking a daily medication should be the rule rather than the exception.
Please don’t be taken in by these pleas to ask your doctor if X, Y or Z is right for you.
Instead, and if there really is a problem, do your own research to see the genuine risks and whether you could improve the situation through natural remedies and good lifestyle changes.
The best decision you can make is not to become a “patient” in the first place
Learn to trust your own body and to use herbs and supplements to treat it. Of course, it takes much more thought, effort and responsibility than just going to the doctor and taking whatever pill he/she prescribes.
It also means changing the food you eat and the cleaning products and other potential toxins you bring into your home.
Sadly, most people don’t want to take that responsibility or make those changes and many will suffer as a consequence. But if you do take charge, you will reap the benefits in the long term.
What if you do feel the necessity to visit your doctor regularly?
Dr. Kendra Becker who is a naturopathic doctor suggests 5 lab tests that can be very helpful for your continued good health. These 5 tests are:
1. Homocysteine which is an amino acid produced by the body, usually as a by product of eating meat. If you have high levels of homocysteine in your blood, you could be at greater risk of cardiovascular disease. At the same time high homocysteine are an indication of low levels of vitamin B6, B12 and folate.
2. Vitamin D and whether you are deficient (as the vast majority in the Western World today are). We have written many articles on this subject and how important vitamin D is to protect you from a whole host of health problems. You could have symptoms of bone pain and muscle weakness to indicate such a deficiency but for most, the symptoms are more subtle. Ideally, your vitamin D levels should read at the very least between 40 and 60 ng/ml.
3. Iodine deficiency. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates over 2 billion people may be iodine deficient, with up to 50 million of them suffering from serious symptoms of iodine deficiency. Iodine deficiency is on the rise in the USA. Our earlier post will tell you a lot more about iodine.
4. RBC Magnesium which should not to be confused with simply magnesium. The serum magnesium (called “magnesium” when you see your lab test) can be normal but at the same time your RBC magnesium is so low you could have a current or potentially serious illness. When your RBC magnesium levels are low, your heart functionality can be at risk. Little known is that in the US population, 80% of people are deficient in magnesium. “Normal” is not optimal” and levels should be around 6.0 mg/dL
5. MTHFR. This 5th lab test may well be new to you and Dr Becker tells us “The methylenetetrahydrofolate (MTHFR) gene produces the THRE enzyme. A standard lab test detects two of the most common mutations. When there are mutations or variation of the MTHFR gene, it can lead to serious generic disorders such as homocystinuria, birth defects, increased stroke, and HTN (hypertension).”
Unfortunately, many of us are in awe of our medical doctors. Don’t let that happen to you. Think, question and be aware…