Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Disease Mongering

"Disease Mongering - is a pejorative term for the practice of widening the diagnostic boundaries of illnesses and aggressively promoting their public awareness in order to expand the markets for treatment." - Wikipedia

In other words, pharmaceutical companies widening the boundaries of illness in order to increase potential customers or simply, turning healthy people into patients. 

Recently, in order to receive my company's discount on insurance, I had to get a routine blood test to get my biometric numbers - cholesterol, blood pressure, BMI, etc.  Having been on the whole-food, plant-based, oil-free diet for over six years, my numbers were phenomenal.

Since I was having blood drawn anyway, I decided to get my Vitamin D levels checked as well.   I wasn't at all concerned about the level, just after a full spring & summer of getting anywhere from 15 minutes to 60 minutes of unfiltered (no sunscreen) sun exposure, six days a week (I play tennis), I was really curious as to what that yielded.

When my doctor came back and said I was Vitamin D deficient and immediately put in a prescription for 3k Vitamin D per day for three months, I was devastated...for a minute.

The most important question that I asked what was were my levels - something that wasn't freely given, which I found odd.  My level was 24 ng/ml - industry standard says Vitamin D should be between 30 & 100 ng/ml.  Then I hit Dr. McDougall's website to see what he had so stay about the appropriate levels.  Sure enough, Disease Mongering was in play here - a good Vitamin D score should be between 20-30 ng/ml.

I canceled the prescription, which I had no intention of ever taking.  If my levels were indeed lower than acceptable, I simply would have increased my sun exposure, given the high correlation between MS & Vitamin D.

I'm sure my doctor meant well, but obviously, she didn't know that supplements cause more harm than good

The moral of this story, doctors are consultants, don't take anything they say at face value, do you research and decided what's best for you.

Beating MS!

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