vitamin d, osteoarthritis, diabetes medication, cancer, evidence-based medicine, and america’s drugs culture

DRUGS
AMERICA’S SOLUTION TO EVERYTHING

Evidence-Based Medicine

People don’t get fat because they don’t exercise enough.  They get fat because they eat too much sugar and other inflammatory foods. Working out is the easy part.   Passing on the apple pie a la Mode (not to mention the dinner rolls) is what’s hard.  
When it comes to drugs, America is out of control.  What do I mean?  Simple.  Beyond the video I posted earlier this week of a famous cardiologist talking about how dangerous drugs really are to your health (HERE), it should be plain to see that our national approach (the give-em-a-drug-for-everything approach) is not working.  Despite spending more money for drugs both per capita and grossly, when compared to every other nation on the planet (HERE) our national health ranks somewhere around 40th.  I don’t know many people who could actually sit down and list forty countries.  And now this.

Brand new statistics (today) say that consumers are spending approximately $1,000 per man, woman, and child here in America (4.4 billion prescriptions, which comes out to almost 14 per person) at a total cost of well over 300 billion dollars.  What are we getting for these dollars?  Most of the time a lot of hot air and hype (HERE).  Case in point, DIABETES DRUGS.  If you click the link, you’ll notice that they don’t perform as touted.  Now we learn that like sugar (HERE), they probably cause CANCER.  That’s right folks, Diabetes drugs have been associated with “The Big C” for several years now.

In Sharon Begley’s STAT article from yesterday (Diabetes Drugs Fuel Cancer Spread in Mouse Study), we see a phenomenon that I have been hollering about for a very long time — the difference between whole foods and their synthetic counterparts (HERE). 

“There is no question that antioxidants, such as those in fruits and vegetables and other foods, neutralize molecules called free radicals that can damage DNA. That has led to assertions that antioxidants can prevent cancer, since DNA damage can turn normal cells into malignant ones. But studies of whether antioxidant supplements (pills, not foods) can prevent cancer have largely disappointed.”

Why have they (synthetic antioxidants) ‘disappointed‘ researchers so severely?  Easy; because they’re synthetic.  For the same reason people actually gain more weight drinking zero calorie diet sodas as opposed to drinking drinks laced with High Fructose Corn Syrup (HERE).  I’ve shown you this over and over again.  When it comes to food, a rough rule of thumb is that natural is good; synthetic is bad.  Not surprisingly we are seeing the same thing with ANTIOXIDANTS.  Enter David Seaman.

Dr. Seaman is a FUNCTIONAL NEUROLOGIST who happens to be one of the world’s foremost experts on the relationship between diet and inflammation (HERE).  It was Dr. Seaman who told us (HERE) that “Monotherapies do not change health.”  In other words, taking a single nutrient from a nutrient complex and trying to “cure” various ailments with it has never been proven very effective (HERE).  This is the work that DR. ROYAL LEE based his entire life on.  Dr. Seaman is back for the attack with a fascinating article from the current issue of Dynamic Chiropractic (Vitamin D Fails to Help Knee Osteoarthritis).

Aside from the fact that knee arthritis (and for that matter, ‘Torn Meniscus’) is also not helped by surgery (HERE) or medications (HERE), I’m not at all surprised by this study.  Since I actually had this study in my Que, I will mix my thoughts with Dr. Seaman’s and show you several reasons why it was doomed from the beginning.

  • STRUCTURAL CHANGES -VS FUNCTIONAL CHANGES:  The first mistake that Dr. Ding, the study’s lead author from Tasmania makes is assuming that helping someone with arthritis requires structural changes to be made.  “Currently there are no disease-modifying therapies for osteoarthritis.   The researchers found that vitamin D supplementation, compared with placebo, did not result in significant differences in change in MRI-measured tibial cartilage volume or a measure of knee pain over 2 years. There were also no significant differences in change of tibiofemoral cartilage defects or change in tibiofemoral bone marrow lesions.”  Although they are probably out there, studies do not largely show drugs, supplements, procedures, injections, etc, etc, resulting in increased amounts of cartilage that can be measured via MRI.  However, if you follow the right steps (I’ll show you in a moment) functional changes are the norm.
  • UNHEALTHY TEST SUBJECTS: The average age of the subjects was 63, with an average BMI of 29.6.  If we round up to 30, we are out of the “overweight” area of the BMI chart and into OBESITY.  Because obesity itself is a function of inflammation (HERE), trying to solve an inflammatory problem such as arthritis without dealing with underlying causes of the “itis” (inflammation) is all but impossible.  Couple this with the added mechanical stress of the extra weight and you can see yet another reason the study did not pan out. 
  • SUB-CLINICAL, SUB-MAXIMAL, OR MEGA-DOSING:  What is the optimum amount of Vitamin D to take supplementally?  Although you will find tons of debate on this, I’m not aware of anyone who knows anything about nutrition who would say it’s best to do it like the authors of this study did.  The subjects, “were randomly assigned to receive monthly treatment with oral vitamin D3 (50 000 IU) or an identical placebo for 2 years.”  Does real nutrition ever work like this — taking a megadose once a month, and then not doing anything for thirty days?  According to SOME DOCTORS it does.  Unfortunately, even if this amount of D were broken up and given in equal doses over the course of thirty days, it would still not be enough to raise serum levels from where they were initially — or at least raise them to a level that is clinically relevant.  On top of this, many experts say that THOSE OF US NOT LIVING IN AND GETTING REGULAR SUNSHINE might need much more Vitamin D than 600 IU’s a day — at least for the short term (see Mayo Clinic’s Vitamin D Dosing).

Dr. Seaman goes on to say that, “In short, the inflammatory chemistry of the metabolic syndrome, diabetes, and heart disease is the same chemistry associated with the expression of arthritis….  This is not meant to to imply that joint trauma does not evolve into osteoarthritis.  This can and does happen…  The greater issue is that osteoarthritis develops in joints that have not been traumatized.”  He goes on to tell us what creates said inflammation.  “A pro-inflammatory diet that contains an excess of sugar, flour, and refined omega-6 oils (which I’ve labeled “Dietary Crack” in previous articles)“.  

I’ve talked about Seaman’s “DIETARY CRACK” and its relationship to LIVING THE HIGH CARB LIFESTYLE, showing you that it is related to virtually every adverse health issue you can name as well as most you can’t.  In fact, this is what made me change my mind about the very nature of degenerative arthritis (HERE, HERE, and HERE).  If you are really interested in solving your chronic inflammatory health issues, including arthritis, you might be interested in reading THESE POSTS.

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