The truth about doctors and vitamins.


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Understanding the relationship of doctors and vitamins. Why is there a doctor's bias against nutritional supplements?

"It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it”

Upton Sinclair 1878-1968

The history of modern medicine

To understand the interesting world of doctors and vitamins it is useful to have a look back at the roots of modern medicine.

Hippocrates (460-377 B.C) a Greek Physician has been described as the founder of modern medicine. Doctors today are guided in their conduct by the Hippocratic Oath.

Hippocrates considered the body as a whole rather than the sum of a collection of parts. Hippocrates believed that good health was a natural state and that disease an abnormality. His focus was to assist nature in helping the body reach its natural healthy state.

His teachings stressed the importance of prevention of disease, not just the treatment of symptoms. He taught the use of food and exercise to prevent sickness and the improvement of general health.

The development of modern medicine

In the 17th and 18th century with the development of the microscope scientists and physicians were able to view the cells function. This led to the improved understanding of bacteria and the development of modern medicines.

Major diseases such as polio, typhoid and tuberculosis were eradicated. Thus the focus for modern medicine became the focus on dealing with sickness rather than health.

Doctors and vitamins; a much needed a shift in thinking

The ongoing development of antibiotics has resulted in the decline in deaths from infectious diseases.

Most deaths today are not caused by infectious disease but from chronic degenerative diseases such as cancer, diabetes and heart disease. The crux of the problem today and the root cause of degenerative disease is oxidative stress. There needs to be a paradigm shift in medical thinking from treating disease to disease prevention. The problem is current paradigms are like traditions and they take time to change. A revolution is required.

By far most of healthcare dollars today are spent on medication and treatment of symptoms once someone is sick. A very small percentage is spent on prevention. A new relationship between doctors and vitamins; nutritional supplements; prevention over cure needs to occur.

Have you noticed that information made available on chronic diseases in books, magazines and on the web by medical institutions and government bodies usually only encourage reactive procedures and the treatment of symptoms?

Reactive procedures include the monitoring of patient’s health through tests, scans and the regular evaluation of symptoms.

You may have questioned the millions of dollars spent on research and development by the large pharmaceutical companies. Why do they continue to invest 95% of their efforts into the treatment of symptoms rather than the trying to prevent the underlying cause of degenerative diseases?

Doctors and vitamins; Doctors bias against nutritional supplements

The history and current state of modern medicine described above gives some background as to why doctors are disease focused rather than focused on wellness and the maintenance of good health.

Most doctors still maintain that you can obtain all the vitamins, minerals and nutrients you need from a normal healthy diet. It would be good if this was the case but because of degradation of the food supply it has become almost impossible to achieve a diet for optimal health and the prevention of degenerative disease.

One of the greatest reasons for confusion amongst doctors and physicians and therefore the general population is the reliance on recommended daily allowances, RDA’s (or recommended daily Intake, RDI’s.)

RDA’s were developed as a guide to prevent acute nutritional deficiency. Deficiency diseases are those such as Pellagra, rickets and scurvy. The RDA’s have been successful in reducing the frequencies of these diseases to an absolute minimum.

The problem is that somehow RDA’s have become a guide for optimal nutrition which is not what they were designed to do.

Optimal nutrition is the level of nutrition required to prevent chronic degenerative diseases such as Arthritis, Cancer, Alzheimer’s, osteoporosis, Diabetes and heart disease.

New nutritional guidelines being suggested by the few scientists and doctors that specialize in nutrition are describing levels of nutrients far higher than RDA’s for the maintenance of long term health and the prevention of chronic degenerative disease.

Doctors don’t spend a great deal of time studying nutrition. They have spent a large percentage of their training studying pharmacology and which drugs are appropriate to treat each disease.

The pharmaceutical companies spend millions of dollars on research and development and advertising and marketing direct to the doctors the findings of their research.

Doctors and vitamins: Beware snake oil and expensive urine!

Doctors’ bias against nutritional supplements is further compounded by an unregulated nutritional supplements industry and the power of effective marketing.

Although millions of people use nutritional supplements and have had noticeable positive benefits from their use many people have not.

Often doctors will refer to supplements causing expensive urine based on the fact that some of the excess nutrients just pass through the system with no positive effect.

Snake Oil refers to the effective marketing of products that rely on half truths and people’s fears and deceptive and misleading practices of a handful of marketers who's only interest is financial gain.

Up to one third of nutritional supplements including vitamins, minerals and herbs sold in the US alone have one of two major issues:

Firstly, the products contain dangerous levels of substances that do not necessarily appear on the products label and secondly the products do not contain the good nutrients in the quantities a described on the label. It is no wonder that the relationship between doctors and vitamins is strained!

When you buy nutritional products you need to ensure they are of high quality. This includes measures of purity, potency, bioavailability and consistency.

Additionally you need to satisfy yourself of the safety of your chosen nutritional supplements.

You need to educate yourself before you buy. Hopefully the relationship between doctors and vitamins will contune to improve as there is a shift in thinking and an increase in education of the general population in nutritional supplements.

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