This is a another look at a topic I first wrote about 3 years ago - but it's even more relevant in today's health care climate. Between government scrutiny of solid holistic health care methods and the inevitable black hat marketing of make-a-quick-buck schemers world wide, I sometimes wonder how the average consumer is supposed to have a clue on how to approach the all-important topic of their own health.
We need 'WHOListic' medicine, we need guidelines and safety standards, we need solid information but we also need to retain the freedom to research, explore and choose.
I had first written about this subject right after I'd read an article on the dangers of many antidepressants actually CAUSING suicidal tenancies in teenagers. What scares me most about the potential government regulation of holistic medicine is the simple fact that they can't seem to regulate allopathic medicines very well and they've been (sorta) doing that for YEARS!
These drugs are approved by the FDA, put on the market, passed out to doctors, given away to moms, dads, teens, grandma, grandma and sometimes toddlers - only later to find out they had SERIOUS repercussions that were never revealed or studied - at least not until it was too late and people just like you, me, our kids and our parents lost their lives.
Is there an answer? There would be if there weren't such big dollar signs attached to anything even remotely connected to 'youth', 'anti-aging', 'health', etc...dontcha think?
I mean, c'mon. isn't the whole reason we take anti-depressant drugs centered around NOT wanting to give up, check out, commit suicide, stop living, etc.? So, we take a drug that makes us more bummed? To te point of suicide?
When are we going to stop running to a doctor every time we (or our children) have sniffle or pang to get that 'magic pill' that somehow ALWAYS manages to have a side effect worse than the original symptom?? A popular comedian, Jeff Foxworthy, jokes in one of his routines about a drug commercial where one of the side effects mentioned is 'anal leakage'. It's a hilarious routine, but, when you think about it, isn't it also kind of sad and scary? Especially since that was one of the MINOR side effects!
Don't tell me about the marvels of modern medicine, I know about an awful lot of them. And, in case you're getting the wrong idea, I have immense respect for scientists and researchers who have devoted lifetimes to try and find ways to overcome modern man's illnesses.
I also have immense respect for most medical doctors and practitioners who have devoted their lives to trying to help and heal their fellow man.
However, the insurance companies, the pharmaceutical companies, the 'big business' of medicine - they can go away any day now. When the almighty dollar supercedes the importance of life, it's time to do something.
Also, why in the heck can't we learn to stop throwing the baby out with the bathwater? With the advent of 'science', all of a sudden everything our ancestors did and believed in the realm of healing was all of a sudden labeled 'superstition' and ineffective 'folk medicine.'
Isn't it funny that now we're realizing how right on target much of that folk medicine was. Mistletoe is being researched for its effect on Cancer - with astounding results. Light - that's right, light - is being used to treat ulcers, infections, carpal tunnel syndrome, and a host of other ailments - successfully. Sound is being used successfully to help depression (without making you want to kill yourself).
Therapeutic touch is being used in hospitals for surgery and heart patients, successfully. The power of prayer - dubbed ineffective by the so-called scientific experts for decades upon decades - has now been proven to have a measurable positive effect on the ill. And these aren't even the tip of the natural health science research iceberg.
So, is the pendulum finally swinging back to center? I sure as heck hope so. But, more than that, I hope it doesn't completely swing in the opposite direction.
If I feel my children need medical attention, I do NOT HESITATE to get it for them. But, if I can keep my children healthy in the first place with natural therapies, herbs, vitamins, good nutrition and treat them at home naturally and successfully, I do that.
We need that ever-elusive balance. Science, allopathic and 'alternative' medicine working TOGETHER for the good of the people. In my humble opinion, THAT is what 'holistic' should mean. Everything working together as a whole to help the whole of the person. The new buzz term for this is 'Integrative Medicine'.
But, no matter what you call it, it makes sense. Use everything at your disposal to heal - and first, do no harm. (I wish the pharmaceutical companies and many doctors would follow that!)