Last Sunday, I was driving back from a family event with my mom and sister’s family. As we were heading down mom’s home street, my brother-in-law pointed out a sign: “pizza and large soda-$4”. We all grew silent…sad.
You do get what you pay for. In this sign, “cheap food” is a mix of a processed meal whose nutrient content contains:
- Processed and bleached bread with:
- Non-nutritive beverage with
- Sugar and HFCS
Both categories are linked to disease; whereas, a whole food diet is linked to prevention of many. In fact, whole, organic foods actually contain potent phytonutrients which exert nutrigenomic effects to:
- Modulate how your DNA will express itself. ( What’s cancer? Does it affect DNA? Hence, my blog on lifestyle, diet, and breast cancer was born! )
- Protect your body from environmental harm
- Provide nutrition and information beyond calories!
According to the Center for Disease Control’s 2012 National Vital Statistic Report:
- We are living .4 years longer
- Less people are dying from cancer, cardiovascular disease, accidents, and homicides
- More people are dying from Alzheimer’s, kidney disease, liver disease, Parkinson’s, and lung infections. Great!
The number of deaths for leading causes of death
- Heart disease: 599,413
- Cancer: 567,628
- Chronic lower respiratory diseases: 137,353
- Stroke (cerebrovascular diseases): 128,842
- Accidents (unintentional injuries): 118,021
- Alzheimer’s disease: 79,003
- Diabetes: 68,705
- Influenza and Pneumonia: 53,692
- Nephritis, nephrotic syndrome, and nephrosis: 48,935
- Intentional self-harm (suicide): 36,909
In a nation in healthcare crisis, with rising costs and insurance dictating necessary procedures, is ObamaCare the solution to the problem or a bandaid?
Do we really want to make the kind of healthcare that is costing millions, producing minor results, and placing us 29th on the infant mortality ranking of industrialized countries MORE accessible?
…or do we need to shift how we are doing medicine?
Dr. Hyman explains:
- Diabetics cost health plans five times more than non-diabetics ($20,000 versus $4,000.) By 2014, when sixteen million more citizens are eligible for Medicaid, the burden of costs will be even greater.
- Seventy percent of the federal budget is for Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security. By 2042, 100% of the federal budget will be required to pay for Medicare and Medicaid…
Dr Hyman continues:
But what if we are coordinating the wrong kind of care? What if our best practices are the wrong practices?
….We don’t have “evidence-based” medicine. We have “reimbursement-based” medicine. Doctors do what they get paid to do, not what the science shows they should do.
The use of quick-fixes isn’t just hurting our bodies, but our minds. In the CDC’s Weekly Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report:
- In 2007, approximately 27,000 unintentional drug overdose deaths occurred in the United States, one death every 19 minutes.
- Prescription drug abuse is the fastest growing drug problem in the United States.
Medications are a good tool. However, only one means of treatment for every individual won’t hit the mark in every disease or get to the root of this problem. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures:
A report from the Institute of Medicine (IOM), Preventing Medication Errors, released July 20, 2006, finds that “medication errors are surprisingly common and costly to the nation.” They conclude that at least 1.5 million preventable “adverse drug events” (ADEs) occur in the United States each year.
So, let me ask you the following questions:
- Is that soda really cheaper?
- Is the trade-off for more accessible health in the wrong paradigm the solution?
- Is organic food really just about nutrition and personal health, or is it voting with our checkbooks for a brighter future for our kids?
- When you hear someone complain about the high cost of insurance who owns a vacation home, and children who need an organic apple the most are living on twinkies, do you think something might be amiss?
- Do you really NEED that medicine or is it covering a lifestyle choice?
Tune in for next week where I’ll discuss why investing in “cheaper supplements” may not be the way out of a poor diet or health conditions as well.
Hyman, M. Why ObamaCare is Not Enough: It’s the Health Care Costs, Stupid! drhyman.com. June 29th, 2012. http://drhyman.com/blog/2012/06/29/why-obamacare-is-not-enough-its-the-health-care-costs-stupid/
DeNoon, D. Infant Mortality: U.S. Ranks 29th: U.S. Ties Slovakia, Poland for 29th Place in Infant Deaths. In: WebMD Health News. Reviewed by Chang, M. October 2008. http://www.webmd.com/parenting/baby/news/20081015/infant-mortality-us-ranks-29th
Murphy, S, Xu, J, & Kochanek, K. Deaths: Preliminary Data for 2010. National Vital Statistics Reports. 60:4 [online]. Atlanta, GA :Center for Disease Control and Prevention: Division of Vital Statistics. January 2012. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvsr/nvsr60/nvsr60_04.pdf. Accessed July 2012.
National Center for Health Statistics. Fast Stats. Leading Causes of DeathHyattsville, MD: Center for Disease Control and Prevention. January 2012. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/lcod.htm/. Accessed July 2012.
Center for Disease Control and Prevention. CDC Grand Rounds: Prescription Drug Overdoses — a U.S. Epidemic. Weekly. January 13, 2012 / 61(01);10-13. Atlanta, GA: CDC Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR). Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6101a3.htm. Accessed July 2012.
National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL). State Initiatives to Avoid Prescription Drug Errors : Several laws enacted and bills considered anticipate problems and use state powers to provide some solutions, 2003-2008. Updated: January 2009. Denver, CO: NCSL: 2009. Available at: http://www.ncsl.org/issues-research/health/state-initiatives-to-reduce-medication-errors-ncsl.aspx. Accessed July 2012.
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- This week I discussed calcium supplementation and bones.
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- This week’s discuss is on brain health