by Jane Gaffin
While zero-tolerance policies clog court dockets and jam jails with non-violent weekend recreational drug users, it’s the dangerous drug-pushing criminals who should be behind bars, namely doctors who take patients off healthy nutrients and hook them on harmful prescription drugs.
The practice is detrimental to patients and financially beneficial to the quacks. Doctors receive 50 to 80 per cent kickbacks from the giant pharmaceutical companies for prescribing specific pills, especially experimental ones.
New drugs are not tested thoroughly before the government approves their release into the marketplace. Then doctors receive extra residuals for monitoring the reactions of the human guinea pigs and sending results to the drug companies in the spirit of research. Twenty years later, the patient is diagnosed with cancer or some other chronic disease.
Often the prescriptions are government-paid. Just as often the useless financial burden falls to the patient who doesn’t qualify for prescriptions under health care programs.
No problem. Plead poverty and the doctor’s office will submit a form to health care personnel. Then the doctor can load up the patient at government expense. The patient doesn’t have to worry about payment and the doctors get rewarded with kickbacks.
It’s a neat, tidy, slick fraud.
One of the latest “flavours of the month” is diagnosing every patient with hypertension for the purpose of prescribing blood pressure pills. Many quacks will go so far as to promise the medication will “prevent” strokes and heart attacks. It’s a bare-faced lie.
But patients want to avoid illness. They are so brainwashed that doctors know best they will attempt a salt-free diet on blind faith. Trusting their gurus of wellness, they gulp pills without considering every pharmaceutical comes with a big price. No pill can prevent anything; a pill should only be ingested to treat a condition that is worse than the side effects caused by the drugs.
Unless the blood pressure is nearing boiling stage and the patient is ready to explode, there is usually no reason to be on blood pressure pills.
Yet many people voluntarily take the pills while admitting dismay. Their blood pressure is not high, and they wonder if doctors could be dispensing misinformation and over-prescribing drugs in a pharmaceutical-driven medical profession. Nevertheless, they are afraid to quit the drugs.
It has created a great deal of confusion for the consumers. But they can be unconfused easily. Anybody whose blood pressure is not high, much less not abnormally high, go for a walk and stop supporting the pharmaceutical racket.
The side effects of blood pressure pills definitely outweigh the disease the patient doesn’t have yet. The pills are diuretics and inhibitors.
Most likely, the pill-pushers will hastily and unthinkingly prescribe a drug that inhibits the body from properly metabolizing sugar. Doctors don’t tell patients to make regular appointments for blood tests to track the blood sugar level. It can sneakily reach the point where the patient has contracted sugar diabetes–another “flavour of the month”.
It is suspect why there seems to be a diabetes epidemic and the medical profession is promoting the disease–pre-diabetes, Diabetes I, Diabetes II and working on popularizing Diabetes III.
A cure for diabetes was discovered by the Mayo Clinic researchers in 1970. I was at the Minnesota research facility for the celebration. Did anybody every bother asking why over 40 years later the pharmaceutical companies aren’t manufacturing drugs to cure diabetes rather than just making insulin to control the blood sugar level? Clue: Once the problem is conquered, the patient could stop taking the cure; insulin is forever.
If the pill-pusher ignores a patient’s allergies, say sulfa, and prescribes a sulfa-based pill, the respiratory system may seize to the extent that the oxygen supply to the brain is inhibited. The patient will gasp for air, become disoriented and maybe incoherent. He may suffer insomnia, nervous tension or be so incredibly lethargic he can only sleep.
A complaint lodged with a disinterested doctor will garner denial. The patient will be told his symptoms are not the pills’ fault but a figment of the patient’s imagination or maybe the result of another problem.
What other problem? The doctor’s malpractice? Ignorance? Greed? Unethical behaviour? Most doctors are not fastidious about writing prescriptions.
For sure, he doesn’t want the patient to learn he collects a goodly bird-dog cheque from the drugs he has prescribed, disregarding the fact they are making the patient sick. The doctor may simply prescribe another brand. Don’t fall for the farce a second time.
Sometimes the pharmacist is guilty of taking the doctor’s word carte blanche and does not ask the patient or check the records for drug allergies before dispensing the prescription. This is a double whammy for the consumer. It can be lethal if the patient suddenly ingests an ingredient which his body cannot tolerate.
Blood pressure pills are diuretics. Of the hundreds of varieties available on the market, most tend to drain the body of potassium through urination. If the body does not retain adequate potassium and salt content, it is highly likely the kidneys will shut down. Anybody who has the misfortune to be on these potassium-draining pills, should be loading up on bananas, potatoes and oranges. Actually, most fresh fruits and vegetables contain some potassium.
So far, the patient has contracted oxygen deprivation, diabetes and kidney disease from taking blood pressure pills to prevent the stroke and heart attack that wasn’t a problem in the first place.
These nebulous “flavours of the month” policies and recommendations filter down to the government every six months from a Toronto-based Canadian Medical Health Advisory Board. No practicing doctor worth his salt knows what to believe any more.
A salt-free diet is equivalent to blood-letting. It ranks up there with the medical community’s lunatic fringe promotion for unhealthy meat-free and dairy-product-free diets. This swill makes zero sense.
Ironically, the government’s wires crossed. The only sensible newspaper ad campaign the Government of Yukon ever ran came from Health and Social Services. It was promoting the drinking of milk as a good source of vitamin D and calcium for children and adults.
Undoubtedly, people do eat more salt than necessary. Nobody has to acquire a taste for the white crystalline substance used for preserving and enhancing flavours of food.
However, when a doctor advises a salt-free diet, patients, in their desire to be healthy, hasten to sign up for government-sponsored Heart Smart workshops and cooking classes to re-learn how to eat and prepare meals.
It’s all well and good, except when people accept this New Think with an “all or nothing” attitude. They dispose of salt shakers and reject packaged and canned goods that list salt or sodium chloride as ingredients as though salt were a poison.
Heart Smart is a dangerous craze unless approached with caution and common sense. One devoted disciple went salt-free, then went hiking in the hills, fortunately with trail mates. It was warm and she was taking plenty of liquids. She blacked out, anyway.
For a long while, the doctors were perplexed. After a gazillion tests, a smart professional realized the patient wasn’t suffering dehydration but rather salt deficiency. Then it was another month regulating the patient’s circuitry and getting the parts meshing again.
An old wife’s tale states that people don’t crave salt. That story probably came about because most people overdose, leaving a sufficient amount of salt in the body. If the salt level is low, come hot weather, active people usually start craving potato chips, sardines, kelp or other salty products.
Like humans, livestock and wildlife–the entire animal kingdom–crave salt and need to supplement their forage and feed diets. Even a mad cow is smarter than a politically-correct quack. Cattle know to bee-line to the salt blocks farmers put out in the fields at strategic locations. Wildlife instinctively migrate to natural salt licks.
Animals are smarter than humans. Some hospitals, supposedly the epitome of wellness, have been designated salt-free zones. Gulag-style meals are not prepared with salt, nor are incidental packets of salt or Saltine crackers put on trays.
Unless outsiders are willing to act as salt smugglers or the patients want to chance swilling from a bottle of medicinal saline solution, patients have no access to salt, even if their life depends on it–which it can.
Why any hospital would go salt-free is a puzzle. Salt deficiency is difficult to diagnose and is usually misdiagnosed as dehydration. Pumping the patient full of additional saltless fluids is a useless exercise.
The body does not manufacture its own salt supply. Without adequate salt intake, the body will lose all its excess salt and water from sweating, which is the body’s coolant mechanism.
If the sodium, chloride and potassium are perspired away through the pores and evaporate on the skin and into thin air without replenishing the stock, dehydration does set in.
Can you imagine a doctor telling a farmer or geologist–or any other outdoors workers who slog under a broiling sun all day–to stay off salt! The wise ones would rightfully scoff over the asinine “medical” advice; the not-so-wise would be setting themselves up for kidney failure and a heat stroke.
However, doctors do continue to advise salt-free diets because they are mainly trained to observe politically-correct, quackery policies and parrot the system’s dictates. Most doctors can’t even discuss nutrition with patients. The young lot who came from the New Think education era probably missed home economics 101 that starts teaching proper nutrition from the elementary-grade level and hammers the subject until the students graduate.
Besides salt being a preservative to protect food from spoilage, it is an effective, cheap wound healer, a disinfectant, in the front line defense against bacteria.
Salt also plays a vital role in the chemistry of baked goods and makes the end product taste good, which is desirable. Salt is every chef’s best friend.
Another reason it is important to cook with or sprinkle free-running table salt on food is for the iodine. Though a person’s small daily iodine requirements are measured in micrograms, iodine intake is essential. Good sources of the element come from the ocean’s kelp and fish. But the cheap, no-fuss source is table salt.
It is beyond comprehension why health systems and politicians would promote the nutty ideas of salt-free diets and a total ban of salt. Even Gulag inmates were blessed with a few grains of salt and sugar for their tasteless porridge whenever the rare commodities came available in post-war Soviet Russia.
A small minority of Canadian doctors did speak out publicly when the Marxist concept was in full cry. Although salt prohibition is still on the books, under the fraudulent term “healthier lifestyle”, the harmful proposal has at least been tamed, but not abandoned before some hospitals declared themselves salt-free zones and left-leaning mayors of places like New York dictated salt bans in their cities, albeit having to ultimately temper or rescind their zealous stupidity.
About the time Canada was dumbing down with politically-correct quackery, the United Nations’ World Health Organization (WHO), of all places, was finally getting smarter.
The WHO recognized the necessity of iodizing poor nations to prevent mental deficiencies in children and prevent thyroid-gland goiters in adults.
A cheap, effective way to distribute iodine to third-world populations in India, Pakistan and African countries is to have manufacturers iodize the salt, announced WHO (about 2006).
Why did it take a WHO brainchild so long to figure this out? Morton’s has been iodizing its salt for North Americans since 1924.
While third-world people are given free iodized salt to make them healthy, Canada’s drug pushers are still advocating salt- and iodine-free diets to make people sick.
Moderation, maybe, but zero-tolerance no.
Salt is good for you; pills and quacks are not.