Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Medicine, Methods, & Supplements

Looks so nice
I would buy it.

Continuing with suggestions from others, here's one from my friend whose name means elephant (Hathi).

She said,

"Try to do the next one on how people resort to alternative medicines and treatments in order to control their diet or lose weight, such as yoga or even herbal remedies like green tea."

Great idea! I don't think I've talked about supplements or medicine on the blog before so this is perfect.

First and foremost, no doubt Western medicine is the dominant force here in America. It's great, it's saved countless people.

in a sense, it's not wholly "complete."* Typically, a patient describes their symptoms which the doctor clusters together and matches it as best as possible to what it may be. Thus, a diagnosis is given.

However, keep in mind the doctor refers to a description of what the ailment could be. Usually it's correct, but where do these ailments come from?

They're humans' way of classifying and categorizing symptoms then giving it a name. Now humans don't know every possible problem or sickness that potentially could exist.

I'm not knocking it by any means. I'm simply giving another perspective on medicine. This is where alternative medicines and practices come in, such as Chinese medicine, Ayurveda, Yoga, Taiji, acupuncture, herbal remedies, and old methodology among other things.

Are they the answer to all problems? No.
Do they have some merit? Yes.

While they aren't the main driving force in good ol' USA, they have been around for a while. People have lived very healthy lives using these practices and systems, that's why they're still around.

Then we have the second tier list of supplements. Greens, fish oil, creatine, protein, vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin B, calcium, iron, folate, folic acid, blah blah blah.

Supplements aren't mandatory. If you have a solid diet full of protein and a variety of foods where you have the body you want, you probably don't need them.

On the other hand, if you have a diet that's good but struggle in some aspects like eating enough fatty omega-3 rich fish then supplementing with fish oil might not be a bad idea.

In the end, it's all relative. You need to look at if a person is trying optimize their specific goal(s) or health, the situation, and in general just the context of it all.

The main problem is individuals look for a quick and easy solution to their problems, such as weight loss. They want results now and immediately, but it's not that easy and unfortunately they don't realize that. What ends up happening is they hear of something - by the oh so wonderful media - and view it as a panacea.

Green tea has been hugely made more popular in the last few years. However, most people aren't aware that to see the benefits of green tea you need to drink about 4 cups a day of either loose or the teabag kind. What do most people buy? The sugary bottled stuff in stores.

One method or item is never the cure to a wide range of problems.

On the contrary, it's only one part of a system.

The different parts put into it contribute to a bigger better picture of health.

*A thousand pre-med students will descend upon my ass for this comment when the semester starts.

Nemo oil anyone?
(Yes, I know it's wrong.)

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