Some thoughts on our Health Future
Based on our choices made today
So can we DO something about our health or must we just go down the path of current expectation of debilitating disease, mounting disability and dependence? I got to thinking about this after reading an article in the morning Columbus Dispatch on ‘stroke patients’ and the comments of Dr Andrew Slivka, medical director of Ohio State University Medical Center’s stroke program: “There’s nothing anybody can do to make it so they’re never going to have a stroke.” I completely disagree!
At the conclusion of my thoughts. I will present the article so you can see what is so disturbing about it. The article reflects the standard of care not only for stroke sufferers, but people with cardiac problems, high blood pressure, diabetes and so many other afflictions. That care is almost totally involved with monitoring vital numbers (blood pressure and weight) and asking about habits (smoking, drinking and exercise) and determining that the patient IS taking his medications and of course, prescribing new meds. This seems more like disease-monitoring rather than giving health-care. But that’s just me.
Doctors can watch their patients for years as conditions worsen, gain weight, loose energy and abilities; become more infirm and dependent. A sad progress, indeed. Though we all hate it – - we accept this as the way things go knowing that there is not much one can do about it. Who would say otherwise?
What we want from a doctor is to ‘fix’ our problems, tell us what to do to get better. That’s why we go to them. Nothing is more irritating than to have your doctor state (with a smile of course) well, you know, you’re not as young as you used to be. In other words – suck it up, this is your life now! Everybody wants to be healthy, free of pain and to remain active and productive with independence and choice in tact. So who else are we supposed to turn to when something goes wrong? I don’t mean hand-holding or patronizing euphemisms – - I want to know what’s wrong? How and why did it get this way? What are we dealing with and how do we fix it? Not just treat the symptoms with one prescription and then another. I am entitled to resolve with an intelligent solution. Is my body missing something I’m not giving it (malnutrition)? Are my organs over- burdened with toxins from our polluted world? (resulting in sick organs e.g. pancreas, kidneys, liver etc.,.)? How can we solve this if we don’t know what is wrong. DO NOT Just tell me IT IS AGING! We weren’t designed to fall apart without cause – what is the CAUSE? If our doctors can’t do this for us, then can we still call this “Health-care”? Or is it Disease-care?
It is wonderful to be blessed with a healthy body, the way most of us were born. When we are young, we take it for granted and can feed it crappy food and it doesn’t break down.. . . seems very forgiving, until one day, it isn’t. Things start to go wrong. We pay a price for all our prior indiscretions – stuff catches up with us. If we are not happy with the pain, lost energy, stamina and developing problems that weren’t there before, then we can sit up and look around and wonder what happened and try to figure out where to start. Most people turn to their doctors and come home with a few prescriptions and that long downhill trip starts. Independent rebels such as your truly dig into books and ask a thousand questions. And go through a lot of doctors because I am not a doctors idea of a good patient – I demand too much time and explanation. They don’t have it to give, most generally, on any level.
One needs to learn enough about what the body requires by way of nourishment in order to have good health and to keep it. You really have no choice, we must give it respectable amounts of time to figure out what works best for us. We have a couple of very good resources to help get the job done. . . curiosity, observation, asking questions of friends and well-informed others and then – - very importantly – - the Internet. Doctors have seldom been my source of help. How often I heard “We just don’t know,” or “Science has no answers on that,” and “Tonsils were one of nature’s mistakes, we don’t really need them.” They just don’t know! If your physician knows anything about nutritional body requirements, he or she went to extra training beyond traditional medical school with all it specialties. Old fashioned, common-sense knowledge seems missing
You can buy diet books and try to read and digest them until you are cross-eyed and bombed out of your mind. No two of them agree on anything. Hundreds of doctors have written good and excellent books. Countless celebrities, ditto. Some quite XLNT. Its a good idea to scan down the table of contents and check out the index in the rear to be sure whatever you are considering buying covers the essences you seek knowledge and help with. Don’t just buy a name, no matter how new or hip it sounds. We are all different with varying needs and experiences (and problems) – so let your inner genie guide you. I have given away a great many books that I didn’t respond to once I got em home and tried to read and make headway. I don’t seek a ‘story’ in a text like this. I want facts, lots of them. I want details on what the organs do and need and what I must do to insure this. I need to know quickly what the rules of the program are so that I can determine if it is realistic for me or I think I can make it work.
Our government isn’t much help either. They have their pyramid thing which does nobody any good – - in fact, it is hurtful. The recommended daily requirements on vitamins and minerals are all but useless as well. These guidelines are about as useless to us as is the FDA in supposedly protecting us from inferior or harmful foods and medications, etc. So we are in the end, ‘ on our own.’ That’s a problem because modern life has less time to spend in leisure activity than prior generations and so we need easy availability to information that we need. There is no shortage of information, sadly, we are over-dosed on it.
My Personal Solution
Recognizing my nature and my need (due to relationship with the medical community), in order to help myself out of (then) current trauma, I solicited help from a health-oriented person who recommended Dr Hulda Regehr Clark’s book, “The Cure for all Diseases” Apparently, this has been a popular book at health food stores and with the naturalists crowd, etc. Though the title was off-putting, my gut approved and I bought it and never looked back. This is one of the best purchases I ever made. Dr Clark rose quickly to the top of the list of people I most admired. An iconoclastic rebel, trained scientist and humanitarian, she dedicated her life to helping people help themselves. She shares her machinery she invented with total displays of specs in how to build the Zapper, a Synchrometer and frequency generator. With all this, one can diagnose, detect and solve many problems. Can’t you just see the glee in Washington? Who did she think she was? They ran her out of the states (like any other original thinker who dares to paint outside the lines) while calling them “quacks.”Thereafter, she worked in Mexico – just outside Tijuana. I have written to her and spoken with her and benefited greatly from her books. And I lamented her recent passing. Her foundation continues her work and I sometimes post an article here and there from them. That was 1995.
The year before, I had discovered Dr. John McDougall and he made being a vegetarian sound appealing. I had leaned toward this for decades, but was always dissuaded by friends and family insisting that it was unsafe. So I bought his tapes and some of his books and tinkered around the edges for years. When my arthritis began troubling me, I decided – go for it! And did. Overnite the pain of arthritis dissipated. I was overjoyed and encouraged to really go for it. It was very easy to do. Lost a little weight, had a good time in the kitchen. And so easy on the budget.
New to blogging (2008), I began including those I had come to respect and Donna Gates of Body Ecology is a remarkable teacher and I admire what B.E.D espouses. Big Fan. Have learned a good deal from her (fermented foods) and used some of her products. Recommend her Video (11-19-09)
During 2009 I began to seriously look at Professor Loren Cordain’s message in the Paleo Diet. Bought the book because my son (Jeff Turner of Fit2Play.com) who is as smart as anyone out there about physicality, strength and conditioning, athletic training and so on spoke so highly of the Paleo Diet and Cordain. Was really impressed. Then in conflict. This Dr Cordain is a scientist like my beloved Dr Clark. He too, is gifted with an easy writing style and giving as many facts as one can absorb or need. And the Paleo Diet functions from bases that I have long found vital to health (no matter what plan or program one follows – there are certain physiological things that should be honored if one is to enjoy radiant health:
- Acid/base balance (Paleo and B.E.D. both emphasize this)
- Glycemic Index (Paleo -great job explaining all this)
- Food Combining (both Paleo and B.E.D. discuss and teach this)
After living the McDougaller life (not 100%, but mostly), it was a psychological hurdle for me to accept this much animal protein into my diet again. But the three issues (above) that are so important to me are well-suited to Paleo. Also, there is the recognition that certain fats are not only acceptable but extremely beneficial to health and well-being. The biggies I have to sacrifice are personal passions - bread, potatoes and rice, as these are high glycemic load foods and not working well for the body. (Had given up Dairy long ago) But an offsetting perk is allowance for a little wine or occasional cocktail.
No matter what plan or method one uses, always go for fresh and organic if possible. Use nothing processed and of course that takes in all cans of anything; nothing in boxes. No wheat, grain, sugar or dairy and if you know anyone with the bellyfat problem – this is the eating plan for them (and perhaps, the best one). This is not just adipose fat, it is fat girding the inner organs and ruining one’s health. This is one heck of a way to drop the numbers on the scale… . .thanks mainly to observing the glycemic factoring and the increase of healthy protein which fires up the metabolic engine.
Please take this as encouragement to seek your own answers. I have shared what seems to work for me and admittedly, the enormous popularity of the Paleo Diet and the McDougall program with the readers of my blog. There are so many other sources out there including Gary Null, Pritikin, Dean Ornish who all occupy prominent shelf space in my library. But then, I cut my teeth on Adele Davis back in the 60′s. So for me, this has been going on a long time. It’s a major interest of mine.
We are all different, have different needs. Our bodies are miraculous instruments and deserve the best care we can give them and I believe there is no need for heart disease, strokes, obesity and diabetes to be cutting our lives short and ruining the precious time we have in this life to enjoy it to the fullest. You and I don’t have to be doctors to do this, to learn how to care for our bodies. Whatever you do, whatever you choose, enjoy it and make it fun. It is quite an adventure with a big payoff. My heartfelt wish for your bountiful health and pleasure in living. Jan
Vigilant stroke patients cut risk
Follow-up, life changes essential to future health
By Misti Crane
THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH
Stroke patients and their doctors should be vigilant in taking steps to stave off a second stroke, according to the author of a new study that reaffirms the risk of recurrent problems. The study, published in today’s issue of the journal Neurology, looked at 10,399 South Carolina stroke patients in 2002. The risk of a second stroke within one year was 8 percent. The risk of a second stroke within four years was more than double that, 18 percent. The risk of a second stroke among blacks was 16 percent higher than among whites.
“The findings from the study suggest that South Carolina and possibly other parts of the United States may have a long way to go in terms of preventing and reducing the risk factors for recurrent strokes or death,” said the study’s lead author, Dr. Wuwei Feng of the Medical University of South Carolina. Overall, one in four stroke patients died within a year. About 795,000 people experience a new or recurrent stroke each year, according to the American Heart Association.
Recurrent strokes and other risks, including heart attacks, are well-established, and the study is a reminder of the importance of taking medication and making lifestyle changes that lower that risk, stroke experts said.
“There’s nothing anybody can do to make it so they’re never going to have a stroke,” said Dr. Andrew Slivka, medical director of Ohio State University Medical Center’s stroke program. But he said there’s room for improvement in managing those things that can reduce risk. Patients sometimes struggle to stay on medications that help with problems that can lead to stroke, including high blood pressure and diabetes, Slivka said.
Lifestyle changes are notoriously difficult, said Dr. David Lang, a neurologist with the Mount Carmel Health System.
“If they’re smoking, they need to stop. If they’re drinking heavily, they need to at least cut back,” Lang said.
Access to medical care after a stroke is important, he said. Without good follow-up, patients might fall out of the routine of taking medicines and changing bad habits, he said.
Ted Hoff of Delaware suffered a stroke in 2006 and credits his good health since then to a variety of factors, starting with the intensive inpatient rehabilitation he had at Riverside Methodist Hospital. Since then, Hoff’s primary-care doctor has been vigilant about monitoring his health, including his blood pressure, Hoff said. And although it took a while, he and his doctors found a combination of medicines that works.
Hoff, 67, watches his weight and tries to maintain a positive outlook, something he thinks is essential to life after a stroke.
“The other thing that was very important in my recovery was the support I had from my wife. Everybody I talk to who has a supportive loved one, that really helps,” he said. When stroke patients leave Riverside, they go with explicit recommendations about how to best avoid problems, said Dr. Geoffrey Eubank, co-director of the hospital’s stroke program.
The hope is that both the patient and the primarycare physician will work to achieve the goals set before the patient left the hospital. It becomes easier to give patients a blueprint for trying to avoid strokes as more research is conducted to draw links between stroke and other factors, Eubank said.
ERIC ALBRECHT DISPATCH
In addition to obeying doctors, Ted Hoff, who recovered from a stroke, said the help of wife Marilyn was essential.