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Tuesday, 31 July 2018

“Pills always cause harm”: BMJ editor-in-chief calls for lifestyle changes over medication

"“Pills always cause harm”: BMJ editor-in-chief calls for lifestyle changes over medication.

As chronic disease rates increase and the pharmaceutical industry grows in size, are we in danger of believing that popping a pill can solve problems caused by an unhealthy lifestyle?

BMJ editor-in-chief Fiona Godlee certainly thinks so. She cites new US guidelines that would label more than half of adults aged over 45 as hypertensive, exploding rates of type 2 diabetes, and a market for drugs for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease of an estimated $1.6bn by 2020, pointing out that all of these conditions could be addressed by adopting healthier lifestyles. She cites a recent review led by a Cambridge University professor finding that:

Whether by calorie or carbohydrate restriction, weight loss has been shown to improve glycaemic control, blood pressure, and lipid profile and is the key to treatment and prevention of type 2 diabetes.

Fiona Godlee has made a point, since she took up the position of editor-in-chief of The BMJ, of standing up for what she believes in. She has, in the past criticized the corruption of medicine and science by the pharmaceutical industry. She also stood behind a decision to publish a critique of the US dietary guidelines by Nina Teicholz, after a correction was published about one of the references. Godlee has spoken up in the past about the way diabetes is treated, describing the way insulin is “pushed” on to diabetic patients as “a scam”. Now, in the latest edition of the BMJ, an article by Godlee describes the growth of the pharmaceutical industry and the growing number of people to be put on medication as:

An appalling prospect. Pills can’t be the answer to diseases caused by unhealthy living. As well as unsustainable cost for often marginal benefit, they always cause harm. Rather than medicating almost the entire adult population, let’s invest our precious resources in societal and lifestyle change, public health, and prevention.

The BMJ: Pills are not the answer to unhealthy lifestyles

Increasingly, people around the world are dramatically improving their health and either reducing or eliminating their need for medications by following a low carbohydrate diet." 
The above article and image from Diet Doctor site here

All the best Jan


Dianna said...

Jan, thank you for sharing this post on a topic that I've just experienced the reality of myself. I recently had a change in my primary care physician because my original doctor left. I am now seeing a NP. At my first visit with her, after reviewing my records and asking me questions, she took me off two VERY expensive drugs and I am getting along really well with the lifestyle changes.

wisps of words said...

Once the genie is out of the bottle, it's very difficult to put it back in.

So no matter how wonderful it would be.... To expect that all will suddenly take up a best-for-them lifestyle.... It is like so many great ideas.... "Pie in the sky."

Some will read, and "see the light." Many can not be bothered. They take the road of least work. Keep eating the foods, offered. Run for a pill, when their body breaks down.

Another worthy opponent of this woman might be...... All forms of the Big Business of Food Inc. Makers of processed foods... Owners of Big Business Meat/Poultry Production... Scientists who provide the Big Business of Food Inc., with additives, which give processed foods, an addictive taste...

It's not only the "Business Of Pills" which needs an able opponent.

DUTA said...

I totally agree with the words of Fiona Godlee. Moreover, pills might eventually lead to dementia and alzheimer in old age.

Teresa said...

Muy interesante. Saludos.

Sandra Cox said...

I firmly believe that exercise and healthy eating are the first step and often the only necessary ones, but sometimes its just not enough. My brother is a case in point. But one does have to be cautious with medications, for sure. Thanks for sharing, Jan.

Christine said...

Good advice.

carol l mckenna said...

Another good informative post with gives pause for thought ~

Happy Day to you,
A ShutterBug Explores,
aka (A Creative Harbor)

Betsy Adams said...

Hi Jan and Eddie, I totally agree with you --and hubby and I (one year ago) bragged about not being on any prescription meds.... We were doing everything in our power to stay healthy .... NOW ----I have A-Fib ---and am dependent on the drugs I tried so hard not to be on.... Makes me cry!

I know that drugs cause many side effects --and I certainly have my share of them (starting with swelling in the feet/legs).... I guess I feel like I have no other choice at this time but to do what the cardiologist says IF I want to continue living. My quality of life is definitely not what it was before the A-Fib---but I've adjusted (tried to adjust) and am still alive....

BUT---I do totally agree that staying healthy without medication is the way to go.

Have a fantastic day, you two.

Valerie-Jael said...

This is so true! Thanks for sharing. Hugs, Valerie


Siempre todos los medicamentos tienen contraindicaciones. Recuerdo en una ocasión, que tenía un dolor de lumbago bastante agudo y a causa de los medicamentos que me resaetaron se me inflamaron las piernas, esos medicamentos producían retensión de líquidos, desde entonces no he vuelto a tomar ninguna medicina antiinflamatoria.


Elephant's Child said...

'Side effects' is another of my bug bears. They are all effects. Some wanted, others less so.
Big Business (and not just in the health arena, is manipulating our world. Very successfully. And for some, very profitably.

William Kendall said...

At this point in my life I am not on any medications. I'd prefer to keep it that way.

Lowcarb team member said...

Google Translation
'All medicines always have contraindications. I remember once, I had a very acute lumbago pain and because of the medications that I was resented my legs were swollen, those drugs produced restraints of fluids, since then I have not taken any anti-inflammatory medicine.'

Chris Lally said...

Don't get me started on pharmaceutical companies and those "doctors" (do no harm?) who peddle their drugs.

A Cuban In London said...

I'm very much anti-pill, but if I have to take them, then I do not hesitate. Health comes first.

Greetings from London.

happyone said...

I so agree!!!

Conniecrafter said...

Hubby and I were just talking about this, when you go to the doctor anymore it doesn't seem like they talk at all about lifestyle changes and exercise but talk about what pill they think will work the best in your situation, so sad.

Magic Love Crow said...

I agree!!!