A 30 year old female who has been a vegetarian for over a decade complains of chronic fatigue and is put on a prescription sleep aid and antidepressants.
A 50 year old woman who is on the standard American diet is overweight and complains of joint pain, allergies, and skin irritation. She is put on steroids, allergy and asthma medication and pain relievers.
A 20 year old woman on a low fat, high cab diet complains of abdominal pain and chronic constipation and is given IBS medication and a laxative to take daily.
A 25 year old woman with a young child complains of extreme fatigue, weight gain, thinning hair, and anxiety and is put on antidepressants.
Do any of these examples remind you of someone you know?
Do any of these examples remind you of yourself? I mean they all sound pretty standard right? Normal health complaints, followed by a visit to the doctor, followed by a diagnosis, followed by a prescription… Copy, Paste, Repeat.
I am not against contemporary medicine. I take prescription medications for my own autoimmune diagnosis. Some medical complaints require a prescription. Things do happen and when they do we are thankful to live in a day and age where they can be resolved. The thing is though, that these “things”, these insurmountable health crises that require medication, do not happen as often as we would like to think. A cold is not a staph infection, seasonal allergies are not pneumonia, and fatigue is not a mood disorder. We know this and the doctors know this, yet many of us find ourselves and our loved ones having ailments that could easily be treated through lifestyle changes, being treated with medications meant for entirely different problems.
Now, this is the part where you think I am going to call out the doctors and say that is their fault for over prescribing medications when they should be helping their patients make more meaningful lifestyle changes… well keep reading, because that’s not where I am going with this.
Yes, the doctors do a play a role in this current pill-popping climate, but really it is the roll of an exacerbated parent at 4pm who gives their child a cookie just to avoid another meltdown. They are responding to our demands after years of being worn down. The real issue lies in our human nature, our desire for a quick fix, or an easy way out. We would do just about anything to avoid looking in the mirror and making changes. We will spend thousands of dollars on unnecessary testing, we will accept diagnoses we will never be able to shake, we will sacrifice our quality of life for the side effects of medications without asking any questions.
We are lazy, we don’t want to give up any of the elements of the lifestyle that is making us sick, and contemporary medicine is our enabler.
Look, I get it, sacrificing your TV time to prioritize sleep is not fun, ordering a bun-less burger with a side of veggies when you could eat the stuffed crust pizza is annoying, and replacing your twice daily diet coke with some kombucha or herbal tea may take some getting used to.
Think about it though, having a heart attack is also not fun, watching your marriage deteriorate because the medication that was prescribed for your fatigue takes away your libido is more than annoying, and figuring out how to pay your mounting medical bills also takes some getting used to. The difference is, that making the lifestyle changes is an empowering choice that will enable you to live a full life on your own terms.
Accepting potentially unnecessary interventions from contemporary medicine enables you to be victimized, gives you an out from any personal liability, and creates a society of people who would fight the idea of making lifestyle changes, quite literally, to the death.
So I guess it just comes down to this, if you suffer from health concerns that stem from chronic inflammation, poor digestion, obesity, or other lifestyle factors, you need to ask yourself these questions: do you want to be empowered? Do you want to live life on your own terms? Do you want to be a healthy fully functional person? Or do you want to continue being lazy?
Click HERE for more information about my journey towards healing my chronic health problems or HERE for tips on getting started on a healthier path.
Great post–I totally agree–and hope others will feel empowered to change.
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