A last, there is an alternative to the pill-pushing bozos who infest the medical profession. There are doctors who specialize in "functional medicine"--or as I like to refer to them, "systemologists".
At last, the error of the pill pusher is coming to an end. Carried away by the "invading pathogen" theory of disease that was so successful in combating malaria, diptheria, typhus, and other diseases of the 19th century, it has only taken the medical industry something like 100 years to figure that not all diseases are caused by invading pathogens.
Of course, it's hard to blame doctors. They're mostly the progeny of medieval bloodletters--people who blindly accepted the "wisdom of day" and followed it's dictates, however idiotic it might be. Lacking any real understanding of what caused the problem, they simply accepted annecotal evidence (nowadays supported by "studies") that such-and-such a drug or procedure was thought to have cured someone, somewhere, once upon a time.
And of course, in today's profit-centered culture, it is the ultra-profitable drug companies that have virtually dictated medical school curriculums. So again is no wonder that doctors, by and large, have been rather more deterimental than helpful to the general health and well-being of the populace. (For more on that subject, see What's Wrong with Medicine?)
But thankfully, that era of insanity is slowly coming to a close. Because the fact of the matter is that the diseases of the late 20th and early 21st century--in industrial countries--at least, represent systemtic breakdowns resulting from nutrient-deficient diets, environmental toxins, sleep deprivation, stress, and lack of exercise. The environmental impingement on the human body is such that the digestive tract malfunctions, energy metabolism limps along, and the body's hormones get out of whack.
The simple truth is that you don't solve systemic problems with a drug. A drug is intended to kill a pathogen. But there is no pathogen to kill. Instead, there is a system that is out of balance. And the way to restore health is restore balance to that system, and the bodily subsystems that comprise it.
That's what makes it sad to see people "Walking for a Cure" for cancer or some other insidous disease. Their hearts are so totally in the right place. But their mission is to accumulate money that a drug company can spend on "research". As if there is the slightest hope. It's like investing in a coal mine in hopes of landing a whale.
So when you go looking for a doctor, look for one who understands the body's systems and how they interact. Look for one who specializes in nutrional remedies that build long-term health, rather than one who prescribes drugs for short term (and short-sighted) symptom-relief. Look for one who specializes in what is now called Functional Medicine (previously known as Integrative Medicine).
It turns out that, these days, such doctors do exist. And their numbers are increasing. At the moment, the Functional Medicine approach is probably best represented by Dr. Hyman's highly readable book: The UltraMind Solution. But there are other representatives, as well. (See the Resources.)
Personally, I like to think that such doctors are specialists in Systems Medicine, and that they can therefore be reasonably referred to as systemologists. But whatever you call them, your odds of improving your health in the long term improve dramatically when you visit one of them. When you visit one of their predecessors... Well, you're taking your chances. And personally, I wouldn't bet on a positive outcome.
Copyright © 2009
by Eric Armstrong. All rights reserved.
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