Sunday, February 9, 2014

Sunday Reflections........The Limitations of Western Medicine

A recap of my doctor's appointment this week - not word for word but you get the drift:

Me - I have had some really bad anxiety lately but it goes away if I stop eating grains and take my herbs.

Response: You know some people take anxiety medication for that. You do realize that those herbs are not federally regulated. They haven't been tested and you really don't know what they put in them.

Me - I was also feeling really exhausted, wasn't sleeping well and was starting to feel spaced out. But I went for a B12 shot from my Naturopath and I felt immediately better. My energy levels are incredible and I started sleeping again. I must be severely B12 deficient . Probably because of my absorption issues.

Response: No. Your B12 levels are 400. That's well within the normal range. Maybe it was a placebo effect. Or maybe they put some additives in their B12 shots. You don't know what's in there.

Me - Well, I think there is something wrong with my stomach, I have been have colitis episodes and I have to eat clean ALL the time. I can't seem to handle any grains, dairy or sugar. Its really hard to maintain this diet with 3 kids, a job and a busy modern lifestyle. I'm just wondering if I could get some more tests. We tested for Celiac but is there something else we could look for.

Response: You have Irritable Bowel Syndrome. You can take laxatives if you get constipated and Imodium if you get diarrhea.

Me - But it seems like my digestive system doesn't absorb nutrients properly. I still think my B12 levels are low at 400 (for me) and I've struggled with my iron and Vitamin D levels being low.

Response: No. Your iron, B12 and Vitamin D are all within the normal levels. I'm not sure why you think you have an absorption issue.

Me - They are only normal because I've been taking iron every day for 9 months, 5000 mg's of Vitamin D every morning and I've had a least a dozen B12 shots in the past year. And my levels are normal, but they are low normal. Should I need to be taking these to be keep my levels low normal indefinitely. Its expensive and inconvenient to have to be constantly taking all these supplements. I eat really clean so you would think that I should be getting enough nutrients from my food.

Response: Well, I don't know what's in those herbs your taking. I'm wondering if they could be suppressing your white blood count. I guess you could try going off all your supplements to see how you feel without them.

Me - I tried that. I went off my iron pills for 10 days and I could barely stand up I was so dizzy and anemic. And I can't take care of my three kids or maintain my job if I'm anemic, B12 deficient and have anxiety.

Response: Well, your blood work looks fine. Your in the normal range.

FRUSTRATING.

Its not their fault I guess. They are trained to read blood work and report things that are "outside of the normal range". Even if those generic ranges don't take into account gender, age, race, physical activity levels, genetics, environment.

And our western medical system is very good at writing prescriptions and ignoring out diets. And our digestive linings.

So they probably aren't going to be able to help me with this - my journey to heal my gut and my adrenals.

I guess its a good thing I have been helping myself. Because after eliminating grains (again), cutting back on the demon sugar and getting my B12 shot I am feeling leaps and bounds better than I was a month ago. Or at least I think I do. Maybe its all in my head..........could be a placebo effect! LOL.

I don't want to slam my doctor or any other doctor for that matter. I know I will need them, many times over my lifetime. Its just the way Western Medicine works......or doesn't work as the case may be.

But seriously, how can our doctors question what is in our herbal remedies (that work wonders I might add and have 4 - 5 easy to pronounce ingredients) but not question what is in the food we are eating. I think the cookie isle is a lot more dangerous than the health food store...................



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