Today, CNN ran a very interesting article by a Dr. Elizabeth Klodas, which you can find HERE.
In a nutshell, she makes the point that in our society, if you have a medical problem, it'll get treated with a drug.
For example, if you have high cholesterol, you'll be put on a statin.
She makes the argument that many of today's ills, diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol, could actually be taken care of via a diet, as opposed to drugs.
And, she is technically correct.
You see, here's the problem that she doesn't seem to get.
In order for people to change their health via diet, one has to make an enormous life style change, and the change is forever.
So, you could control your diabetes by losing weight by not eating all that crap you like, but that means you can't eat all that crap you like for the rest of your life.
Now, there are definitely those individuals who can pull this off.
However, as a rule, they are no fun and have no friends, so will die alone.
Hope those extra 5 years were worth it.
The issue is far more complex than she makes it seem.
First, in order to truly have the type of pristine diet necessary, one needs to be educated on precisely what that is.
Which, to be honest, in an area most individuals (including doctors, which she correctly points out) care very little about.
Second, it takes a fair amount of time and effort to do the necessary shopping and cooking for these meals.
Yes, you can order them via Pea Pod, etc., but that's already going to make it more expensive.
Which brings me to my third and final point.
Eating well, is much more expensive than eating crap.
For example, a bunch of broccoli may run you $3.
And, it's unlikely to fill you up or satisfy you.
Versus 3 $1 McDonald's value deals.
Also, we are surrounded by food. I am constantly amazed that anyone in this country should go hungry.
But, most of the food we are surrounded by is crap.
So, for this doctor to be successful, she needs to put fast food out of business first.
Good luck with that.
In my years of practice, I found that people wanted what they wanted.
We have grown up in a society that wants a pill to solve all their problems.
Their attitude is, "If I have to take personal responsibility, what's the point of your existence, Doctor?"
Let's get away from food for a moment. (Which is a struggle for me, believe me!)
Look at pain pills.
How many people could get off their pain medication with a little bit of diet and physical exercise?
Yet, it' soooooooo much easier to pop a Vicodan.
Ultimately, we are all responsible for our health.
There are no laws against living an unhealthy lifestyle.
So while this doctor's lofty goals are ideal, the chance of achieving them approaches zero.
So, the next time someone tells you all your problems can be solved by what you eat- STAY SKEPTICAL!
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Filed under: Health Care