Meet Mark

Let me introduce myself. My name is Mark Sisson. I’m 63 years young. I live and work in Malibu, California. In a past life I was a professional marathoner and triathlete. Now my life goal is to help 100 million people get healthy. I started this blog in 2006 to empower people to take full responsibility for their own health and enjoyment of life by investigating, discussing, and critically rethinking everything we’ve assumed to be true about health and wellness...

Tell Me More
Stay Connected
January 18, 2011

Doctors as Middlemen?: Direct-to-Consumer Online Testing Services and Other Consumer Health Trends

By Mark Sisson
156 Comments

An alarming new health trend has medical professionals scurrying around issuing dire warnings of impending doom and death. As a recent piece in the Wall Street Journal relays, consumers are taking their health into their own hands by foregoing expensive, redundant doctor’s visits in favor of mail order lab tests. Blood lipids, A1C, vitamin D, C-reactive protein – you can get just about any lab value tested online, no insurance required. Lipids run between $30 and $50, A1c between $25 and $40. Even people with (overpriced) insurance and high deductibles are skipping the doctor. This is part of an overall larger worldwide trend toward going it alone. The home blood glucose monitoring industry, for example, grew from $3.8 billion worldwide in 2000 to $8.8 billion in 2008.

What should we make of it?

Now, I like the sentiment – after all, this blog’s readership is comprised of hundreds of thousands of readers who set out to take control of their own health, and I’m quite fond of you guys – but I’m wary of the execution. People taking their health into their hands, realizing that the system isn’t set up with their best interest in mind? Good. I like it. We need it. People are realizing that you can’t look to physicians as deities with all the answers or to insurance companies as pure-hearted benefactors. If you do, you’ll end up disappointed and penniless.

But what happens from there, once the test results come in?

The average person that gets online lab results showing “elevated” cholesterol might do a couple things. They’ll try to modify their lifestyle and get more “heart healthy,” which usually entails eating whole grains, switching to low-fat dairy, jogging every day, and eating rabbit food. This isn’t very sustainable, it’s boring, and unless they follow the entire Ornish-esque plan (which includes exercise, stress relief therapy, meditation, cessation of smoking, and other proven interventions that I wholeheartedly support), it probably won’t do much to improve the health of their hearts. Or they might take the easy way out and wrangle for a Lipitor prescription, either by paying the co-pay to visit the doctor, who will, of course, have to order another lipid test before prescribing anything, or by ordering some statins from a sketchy online site and hoping that they actually receive what they ordered.

They might also venture into the world of complementary and alternative medicine, or CAM, in lieu of, or in addition to, conventional medicine. In fact, that’s another growing health trend that fills me with mixed feelings. On one hand, people’s hearts are in the right place: wresting control of their own health. But CAM is a tricky subject. Much of it is hogwash and pure malarky, like homeopathy and colon cleansing, which are rightfully dismissed by anyone with a sound head on his or her shoulders. If people try to take control of their health by submitting to ridiculous, unproven, illogical practices like those, is that a good thing? No; they mean well, and their intent reflects a positive mindset and a growing trend, but the resultant treatment might be useless at best and dangerous at worst.

Then there’s stuff like vitamin supplementation, massage, bodywork, joint mobility work, nutrition, and meditation – all proven to be beneficial to both mind and body (as if the two were different) and all firmly in the “alternative” camp. If folks opt for that type of “CAM,” they’re doing it right. And the latest trends seem to indicate that they are doing it right. The increase in people using complementary and alternative medicine (38.3% of adults in 2007, up from 36% in 2002) may not seem like much, but the types of CAM treatments they’re favoring have changed. In 2007, the most popular CAM treatment was use of “natural products,” which includes vitamins, herbs, and other supplements, followed by deep breathing, meditation, chiropractic, massage, yoga, diet, progressive relaxation, guided imagery, and, finally, at a measly 1.8% of CAM users, homeopathy. I can get behind most of those. In 2002, the most popular natural product among adults was echinacea, followed by ginseng and gingko biloba; in 2007, fish oil had jumped to the top of list with over 38% of adults, followed by glucosamine, echinacea, and flaxseed. CoQ10 also made its way into the top 10 in 2007, nudging out “soy supplements.” Nice. So it’s not just enchanted snake oil being used by greasy, non-vaccinating hippies. Much of this stuff is proven. I also like the diseases/afflictions that people target with CAM. Back in 2002, a lot of people used it for “head and chest colds.” Pretty dubious, right? As of 2007, the top five diseases/conditions for which CAM was used were, in order, back pain, neck pain, joint pain, arthritis, and anxiety – all conditions for which things like diet, supplements, massage, yoga, and meditation are viable therapies. It seems that even as CAM use increases, the use of frivolous, misguided CAM therapies like homeopathy are decreasing in favor of beneficial therapies that jibe with conventional medicine (that is, they work!). This is, then, a bittersweet trend, with the idiocy tainting the legit therapies.

What About the Tests?

I’m kind of biased against numbers on a piece of paper that supposedly represent your current state of health. I don’t doubt that they reflect something going on internally, but I wonder how important it is to keep careful, steady track of the numbers and react wildly to their fluctuation. An obsession with lab values is kinda like when people weigh themselves once, twice, even thrice a day. They start focusing on numbers and numbers alone only to ignore subjective, real values, like “How am I feeling?” or “How do I look in the mirror?” And don’t even get me started on those increasingly popular but expensive DNA tests. As of now there’s almost nothing valuable to be gleaned from them. Numbers are ultimately an abstraction, and if you pay too much attention to the numbers game, you’ll start forgetting why you’re here. What’s important? Weight lost or inches lost? Numbers on the scale, or strength gained, joint health improved, and energy levels regained?

These are just numbers, albeit numbers that represent something tangible. And some of them are definitely useful. Testing your vitamin D levels is a good move, especially if you’re starting out and plan to supplement. You get tested, figure out where you’re at, start a supplement regimen, and retest in a few months to get your bearings. Diabetics should probably monitor their A1Cs, and a pre-Primal blood lipid test followed up three months later is a good way to keep skeptical loved ones off your back, but monthly tests? What’s the point? Are you gonna start eating whole grains if your LDL goes up a bit? What if it’s just your body curing itself of fatty liver? What if the number was just an aberration, a fluke?

In the end, you have to ask yourself if the numbers are going to change your behavior. I’m entirely unconvinced that I need to test my cholesterol, because whatever values come back are not going to change the way I eat, work out, sleep, or live. I’m still going to eat lots of animal fat, lift heavy things, sprint once in awhile, get plenty of sleep, and try not to take life too seriously. As long as those things are going well, as long as I feel good, wake up without an alarm clock full of energy, hold my own on the Ultimate field and in the bedroom, I’m good. Those are my health markers. If they’re in order, I’m doing things right.

So – take advantage of these tests, if you truly think they’re relevant to your situation. And if you want to engage in the Primal pastime of self-experimentation with a bit of statistical, objective rigor, go right ahead and monitor your numbers. Just don’t become wedded to the numbers and forget the bigger picture. I mean, let’s face it: when it comes to lifestyle interventions, dietary changes, activity habits, and all the rest, you know exactly what to do. It’s always pretty much the same. You know you should get more sleep, play more often, spend quality time with friends and loved ones, stimulate your mind on a regular basis, avoid industrial foods and grains, and the results of some test are not going to change those basic truths.

Overall, though? Things are getting better. The movement is growing. The trend toward taking charge of one’s own health is ultimately a good thing. All those people who are sick of wasting  money on tests and visits are that much more likely to happen upon the importance of laying a strong foundation for health through nutrition, exercise, and lifestyle. They may wind their way through veganism, raw foodism, Mediterranean diets, and whatever else, but even a single step away from the Standard American Industrial Diet – in any direction – is a positive move.

What do you think, readers? Stats are cool and worldwide trends are nice, but I also find value in anecdote; are the people around you beginning to take responsibility for their own health? If so, how are they going about it? Are they doing it wrong? Making things worse? Let me know in the comments!

TAGS:  Big Pharma

Subscribe to the Newsletter

If you'd like to add an avatar to all of your comments click here!

Leave a Reply

156 Comments on "Doctors as Middlemen?: Direct-to-Consumer Online Testing Services and Other Consumer Health Trends"

avatar

Sort by:   newest | oldest | most voted
Audry
Audry
5 years 8 months ago

What’s so greasy and hippie-like about not vaccinating?

Ely
Ely
5 years 8 months ago

can of worms, now open.

Heidi
5 years 8 months ago

As a mother with a child severely and permanently harmed by a vaccine, I thank you for your response, DaiaRavi!

Sarah
Sarah
5 years 8 months ago
Really, Heidi…? Do you have irrefutable proof that it was the VACCINE that did the damage – or a contaminant that might have accidentally found its way into the vaccine…? Provide me with undeniable evidence that it was the vaccine (i.e. the culture of deactivated virus which – hopefully* – provides the immunity) or something else. Yes, your child was injected with something in a vial, but the vial could have been contaminated; in fact, I’d bet my life savings on it being the case! *I say ‘hopefully’ because in the case of something like the ‘flu vaccine, scientists can… Read more »
DaiaRavi
5 years 8 months ago

yer welcome Heidi – and very sorry for your child. also – please ignore the horribly insensitive and just plain stupid, uninformed response below from S-

you have experienced sadly what many many parents have with regards to once-trusting vaccines – and even more sadly, many of those parent only have the memory of a child…

DaiaRavi
5 years 8 months ago

correction – insensitive uninformed response is above…

lisser
5 years 8 months ago

How are you (Kansas) a “sitting duck” if you have been vaccinated against “a truly horrifying disease”?

Did you know that *most* vaccine “preventable” outbreaks START in the *vaccinated* population?

The root word of “immunize” is immune. If a vaccination truly makes you IMMUNE to whatever it is that you have been vaccinated against…why are they now saying that people need all these various “boosters”? Hmmm?

Best vaccine book ever: The Sanctity of Human Blood: Vaccination is not immunization

DaiaRavi forgot to mention that some vaccines are grown off of aborted human fetal tissue.

lemble
lemble
5 years 8 months ago

A friend of mine almost died of a vaccine because apparently the nurses administrating it didn’t know what was in it. When asked if he had any allergies, he told them he has an allergy to eggs. Despite this, they administered the vaccine which contained egg protein. Nice work, nurse.

Kansas Grokette
Kansas Grokette
5 years 8 months ago
The “sitting ducks” are the people of the United States as a whole, not me personally. I received the smallpox vaccine as a child approximately 45 years ago. I might – MIGHT – still have some immunity to smallpox, but the vast majority of the current US population has not received a smallpox vaccine or anything like it. And in case you think smallpox is a “dead” disease, you’re wrong. There are literally tons of the stuff in freezers around the world, and all it would take to release it is a little cash in the right (or would that… Read more »
Kelda
5 years 8 months ago

We have hysteria in UK at the mo for having ‘insufficient’ flu vaccine and endless pictures of young children/pregnant/newly delivered mothers who’ve died from swine flu, unvaccinated.

I’ve been wondering to myself all these months thinking if all these people had eaten Primal they would have had immune systems able to cope. They seem to have completely missed the point.

DaiaRavi
5 years 8 months ago
This nesting is not deep enough – Please stop parroting the CW pap you have all been fed in schools and investigate for yourselves – if you do not know that EVERY major epidemic that the vaccines have claimed to have eradicated was virtually GONE (less than 20% on the mortality curves) before the “savior” vaccine was introduced – then open up your d*mn minds to something other than the standard dogma. NUTRITION AND SANITATION have eradicated or lessened ALL of our so called epidemic diseases that vaccines take credit for. Period. (BYW polio is still with us – re-named… Read more »
Sarah
Sarah
5 years 8 months ago

Really, DaiaRavi…?

That would mean that all diseases are caused by poor hygiene practices – this is, of course, BS.

It also shows you fail to grasp one of the fundamentals of the PB. Grok would have eaten dirt on a regular basis and, in doing so, exposing himself to many different viruses and bacteria – some helpful, some not.

Oh wait – I’ve just read the end of your post. You’re here to troll – right, no need for me to waste any more of my time on you…

DaiaRavi
5 years 8 months ago

breaking my promise – Dear Sarah – i’m here in full support of Mark’s Daily Apple – have become a regular – you are clearly not quick enough to pick up on irony.

bye bye fer t’day

mcallit
mcallit
5 years 8 months ago

In regards to Grok and vaccinating, it seems that some of you need to read Guns, Germs, and Steel. The entire reason for the increase rise in viral agents that can harm/kill us is due to our now living in large, concentrated groups. Of course Grok wouldn’t have had this problem. Prehistoric peoples were nomadic (for the most part), and isolated from other large groups.

Heidi
5 years 8 months ago

Thank you DaiaRavi. I have learned not to argue over it and not to let remarks like that hurt my feelings. I also used to believe that the few people harmed by mass vaccinations was acceptable because the majority of people were helped. Once your loved one becomes a part of the collateral damage, though, it tends to change your thinking.

Aram Hovsepian
5 years 8 months ago

I just posted an episode about vaccination yesterday. Might answer your question 🙂

http://www.workoutmaster.com/?p=1165

Victoria
Victoria
5 years 8 months ago

“But CAM is a tricky subject. Much of it is hogwash and pure malarky,”

Thank you for that!

I’m encouraged to see at home Vitamin D tests for a reasonable ($60) price tag. Pretty sure my dad just paid around $300 after I suggested he get it tested at his last check up! The scientist in me wants to run blood through a bunch of the mail-in services and local lab facilities and see how the values compare. This would, of course, defeat any economic advantage of skipping the doc!

Ely
Ely
5 years 8 months ago
There is a new business going in near me promising to provide Any Lab Test. I had no idea there was such demand, but as you say it makes sense; skepticism & mistrust of doctors and insurers are on the rise. People don’t want to make appointments, sit in waiting rooms, pay premiums and co-pays, just to get the brush-off and advice they could find online. There are also a number of small walk-in clinics popping up, offering just about everything you might need from a doctor on way less notice. My BIL went to one to see about a… Read more »
Jenny
Jenny
5 years 8 months ago

Many doctors are affiliated with hospitals, so their secondary function is to send business to the hospital whenever possible. Find out if your doctor is hospital-affiliated.

David K
David K
5 years 7 months ago

I like the convenience and effectiveness of the Doc-in-a-Box shops (we visit one regularly,) but I have questions. Did your BIL and your friend have the same kind of infection, and did they seek help at the same time during the incubation period of the infection? The difference in outcome is undeniable, but reality may be a bit more complicated than appearances.

damaged justice
damaged justice
5 years 8 months ago

Exactly — as Dr. Kurt Harris says, if you’re already doing everything right, what are you going to do when the numbers come back bad? Start doing things wrong just to do something different?

Kristina
5 years 8 months ago
I found MDA after a long journey of misc. ‘diets’ -Body For Life, South Beach, The Schwarzbein Principle, even a brief foray into vegetarianism – all of which I knew any typical Dr. would not recommend. Funny thing is, even as an 80/20 primal right now, just about a month into it (cut out grains completely, still too high on carbs from fruit but if I go too low my body doesn’t like it, probably because I’m breastfeeding still) and this is the best I’ve felt in a long time. (even with my interrupted sleep, I don’t know what I’ll… Read more »
Suvetar
Suvetar
5 years 8 months ago

Totally agree with you.
Years after following the CW diet plan, starving myself to stay thin, getting screwed over left and right by other business (car dealers for example), even being scammed by my dentist for 6 years, I finally,too, took matters into my own hands and research EVERYTHING now.

Finding out about primal eating/living was THE best thing that has ever happened to me. I did ‘wake up’ as you stated, problem now is I think I’m surrounded by zombies….

Bonnie
5 years 8 months ago
I have concerns about the accuracy of mail order tests. If you are at your doctor and they run tests they can at least consider the fact that given your overall health, complaints and other blood values that something might be skewed and weather it is something to worry about. I’m an acupuncturist and I was also trained in Chinese herbal medicine. I am horrified by people who think they know as much as their trained professional. Yes, sometimes an herb is good for a condition, but often the dosage on the bottle isn’t enough for the person’s body weight… Read more »
Michael
Michael
5 years 8 months ago
Mark, Excellent post. It is tough, weighing all this information in light of living in a way that ultimately is anti-intervention. I think you bring up a great point about keeping the bigger picture in mind. I am 13 months primal and feel AMAZING. my lipid numbers reflect the changes with trigs at 73, HDL at 63, and total cholesterol at 240. LDL doesn’t even matter as the ratios look terrific. I had to do a lot of research before I was comfortable telling my doctor where he could put the statins he was trying to push as docs hold… Read more »
Kelda
5 years 8 months ago

Amen to that!

Tim Huntley
5 years 8 months ago

Mark,

You said “diabetics should probably monitor their A1Cs”. I would suggest that A1Cs are a great way to find out that you are on your way to diabetes and still have plenty of headroom to do something about it (much better than fasting glucose).

…Tim

Katie
5 years 8 months ago
Great post! As a nutritional counselor, I am seeing the shift toward natural therapies a lot. As you said, it is great that people are starting to take a more active role in their health, but there are dangers as well. The availability of tests like Vitamin D has been a tremendous help to me, as it is one supplement I don’t like to recommend without knowing their current levels since both overdose and deficiency can be dangerous. In most other cases, I work with the patient to correct underlying issues with nutrition and supplements (very similar to the primal… Read more »
Alison Golden
5 years 8 months ago

Personally the test I like the most is the-how-do-I-feel test.

Generally, I feel positive about people taking their health into their own hands. However, only very smart, motivated people can do that (like people who are reading this blog) and that worries me.

My family, who still see doctors as Gods, don’t/won’t/can’t do that and it is sad to see how vulnerable they are.

Erin
Erin
5 years 8 months ago
I can definitely see for those that are uninsured or under insured would find benefit in mail order labs. The non discounted prices for some big labs today are just INSANE. The one most docs in my area use (shall we say rhymes with west), has non discounted (so before insurance) prices on labs that are blown completely out of proportion. My annual bloodwork this year (which is pretty comprehensive including vit D and thyroid), had a billed charge of over $700!!! Discounted through my insurance of course it only cost me $90 something from my HRA savings. Annual bloodwork… Read more »
Ann
Ann
5 years 8 months ago
I agree that it can be extremely dodgy trying to interpret your own results and decide where to go from there, especially when you don’t know just how qualified the company doing the testing really is. But given my many doctor visits to various doctors and how absolutely useless – not to mention demeaning – most of them have been (and I’ve heard many similar horror stories from my friends), I don’t think all that training is doing them (or us) a whole lot of good, either. I’ve had GPs miss mental health diagnoses and just tell me to take… Read more »
Laurie
Laurie
5 years 8 months ago
I totally agree with you, Ann. I’ve had the same exact experience myself with numerous M.D.s who arrogantly told me there was nothing wrong with me, tried to put me on statins and made me feel like a hypochondriac. I’ve finally been diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, gluten and other food intolerances, and anemia, but it took going to a nutritional chiropractor and paying out of pocket to get some real help. Fortunately, he’s in a co-op with one of the major labs so the lab test prices are very reasonable. I finally understand what’s going on with my body, have… Read more »
Katherine
Katherine
5 years 8 months ago
I have had a similar experience. After copious testing I was told there was nothing wrong with me and offered anti-depressants, for symptoms including doubling my bodyweight in 3 years, needing ventolin 4 times a day for asthma, joint pains and so on. If it hadn’t been for “crossing over” into the CAM world I might never have been advised to try cutting out wheat, and I might still be back there, starving hungry, gaining weight, not sleeping, heart constantly racing and so on. And that’s before considering the longer term consequences of continuing to eat gluten when I was… Read more »
tess
tess
5 years 8 months ago
Ann and Laurie, well stated, and complete agreement from where i stand! when i was doing the convention-wisdom thing, which included relying on the medical profession, i was unhealthy and felt like hell. now that i thumb my nose at them, despite my age, i feel and look very well indeed. sad but true, women ARE given short shrift when it comes to effective treatment! another point that i haven’t seen anyone make yet is, it’s always a good idea to run a second test if there’s any suspicion of the first test’s reliability — being a lab tech, i… Read more »
Ann
Ann
5 years 8 months ago

Thank you all for the supportive words – I was a bit worried about making such a long and rambling post, but it’s heartening to know there are others who understand exactly where I’m coming from, though I certainly do regret that anyone else has had to go through similarly disheartening struggles on their way to wellness.

stardust
stardust
5 years 8 months ago
I see the problem as two-fold. One: Influenced in large part by Big Pharma, medical schools place a heavy emphasis on prescription drugs as the first line of treatment. I had a cardiologist try to prescribe statins to me without even checking my cholesterol numbers. When I asked for her advice on making healthy lifestyle changes instead, she as much as told me she didn’t want me for a patient. (She got her wish.). Two: In the age of specialization, no one treats the whole patient anymore, and there is little regard for how any individual treatment recommendation impacts any… Read more »
Minxxa
Minxxa
5 years 8 months ago
Well, as you can see, lots of the same ‘ol story. I, too, went undiagnosed for 5 years with hypothyroidism… even though I told them I my mother had it, and I had all the symptoms, because my doctor didn’t know the first thing about reading thyroid results or even what tests to run. I blame myself for listening to “your tests came back normal” for way too long as well, which is why now I do not take anybody’s opinion as fact. I do my research and due diligence. My current doc is awesome but I consider him a… Read more »
Dave, RN
Dave, RN
5 years 8 months ago
I distrust them more than ever. I hit my elbow and got very swollen and red a few hours later. I knew it was infected (happens rarely) and went to get the antibiotics. I recognized it a a pretty serious infection. I got IM antibiotics for 5 days in a row, and the doc was about to admit me to the hospital for IV antibiotics since I wan’t responding. I told him since I’m an RN I know how to mix the drugs and could give the shot to myself at home (this was the day before Christmas and I… Read more »
Ann
Ann
5 years 8 months ago

What a blessing to finally have a doctor who works *with* you on your care, rather than expecting you to defer to him on everything even when he’s done absolutely nothing to help. I hope someday to find such a doctor, if I can ever bring myself to see another (and assuming there are ever any new ones I haven’t gotten crappy care from already at my local medical centre, since I’m in the UK and can’t exactly afford to go private at the moment).

Ali
Ali
5 years 8 months ago

I think it’s great to take a personal interest in one’s own health. I think the key is self-educating as much as possible and realizing that, in some cases, a professional is needed.

They must’ve learned *something* in all those years at school. 8)

Daniel
Daniel
5 years 8 months ago

In these troubled times, Ann, might I suggest that this is “magical thinking” in many cases – Big Pharma being a major fund source for med schools and the AMA, what if most of what “they” learned in med school …was to trust Big Pharma, take the kickbacks,& prescribe the latest miracle pill as-seen-on-TV…

Some doctors are healers, but all of them are businessmen/women.

Ashley North
Ashley North
5 years 8 months ago

I’m with you, Mark! When I was following the CW plan, I would on my doctor appointments feeling like crap but I was always declared ‘healthy’. How was that?? I never had any energy and I felt half-starved all the time eating my stupid oatmeal and nonfat lattes. Now, I feel good and I’m just enjoying life following the Primal Blueprint. I’ll never let some numbers on a doctors clipboard take that away!

barbara
barbara
5 years 8 months ago
I went for a first time visit to a cardiologist. He first asked me if i was on any medication. When i said “no”, he was shocked! (i’m 65). He immediately wanted to get me on some meds! My cholesterol is high (but has dropped 30 points since doing 80% primal this year) so he left the room and came back with 4 boxes of Lipitor! (free samples for a month). I told him i was scared of statins, and he had no idea why. He said just take them for a month and then get a blood check. Well,… Read more »
DaiaRavi
5 years 8 months ago
in more specific regards to Mark’s post, i am very encouraged that people are taking their own health care into their hands – of course the reasons are probably more economic than about self-responsibility, but it is taking back some of your power nonetheless. As far as the dicey-ness of interpreting your own results, well, driving a car on a public road is pretty damn dicey according to stats – one learns by trail and error all things in life – and staying on the right side of the road is no less important in developing one’s own judgment than… Read more »
Susan Campbell
Susan Campbell
5 years 8 months ago

Hey, that’s pretty harsh Davi, saying that most people take control over their own health for economic rather than for personal responsibility! What on earth makes you say something like that? Those of us in Canada have to pay to have our lab work done privately…done through our doctor our social medicare covers it! Regardless of medical system, I think most people are taking matters into their own hands because our primal lifestyle finds a very negative audience with most doctors, nutritionists, etc.

Susan Campbell
Susan Campbell
5 years 8 months ago

Oh whoops, my gosh I’m sorry, I wrote your name incorrectly. I apologize for that DaiaRavi!

Aaron Curl
5 years 8 months ago

I didn’t take that as harsh. Maybe he is referring to the economy? I take care of my own health for both reasons. Even if I could afford professional service, like lab work from a doctor I wouldn’t. I suppose if I need an arm reattached or something I would go. 🙂

DaiaRavi
5 years 8 months ago
what i meant was – like myself – i have no health insurance – and statistically i’m far from alone – also – as JoAnn notes in a post below – the same tests via doctor office were $300 that were $59 independently – and she would have to pay for it either way – THAT’S what i meant by the financial reasons – why would you pay the doc office a 500% dividend to have the tests done there? I’m pretty healthy but with the switch towards a paleo diet, i want to see what my blood iron is… Read more »
Tracy
Tracy
5 years 8 months ago
I too have years of misdiagnosis and harmful treatment for undiagnosed Celiac Spruce. I know longer have a thyroid due to cancer directly related to this. Taking charge of my own health has really made the difference and finding this site and info have definitely added to my knowledge base. Mark, have to disagree with you on homeopathy as I have used it on my animals, family and friends and watched it work. Have also used several types of “energy” medicine to help my daughter recover from Steven Johnson syndrome(which is often deadly, dodged a bullet there). Though we didn’t… Read more »
Robin
5 years 8 months ago

Thank goodness someone responded to that! I find most of your posts very enlightened Mark, but the fact that you kept trashing homeopathy with no reasons given annoyed me. My family has used homeopathic remedies for years for all sorts of ailments with great results.

Erin
5 years 8 months ago
Ditto on the homeopathy. France and the UK use it extensively. Over there, homeopathy is part of regular medicine and they have tested many major remedies clinically. I could dig up all kinds of studies, like these ones: http://www.nutrition-matters.co.uk/misc/homeopathy.htm I haven’t had a flu in 9 years and it’s not due to lack of exposure (7 of those years I worked supplement retail- you might as well be working in a doctor’s office when colds and flues are going around!) and it’s also not because my immune system is so super. I still get colds (I had to fight quite… Read more »
Dan Perez
Dan Perez
5 years 8 months ago
Thanks for an informative post, Mark. I was wondering what readers think of chiropractic for health maintenance. I’ve been getting chiropractic once a month for over a year now at the advice of my chiropractor. I’m already in pretty good shape, so I’m not sure if it is doing anything but I feel pretty good after the treatments, like I’ve been realigned. Regarding people ordering their own lab tests online, it is a good thing as some people are too lazy or even scared to go to a doctor’s office to have this done. Privacy is the key here. If… Read more »
Maddie427
Maddie427
5 years 8 months ago
Personally, I think it is a fantastic way to help your health (I’ll admit, I am a bit biased). Think of it this way, your brain communicates to every single part of your body (from your stomach to your baby toe)via your nervous system. If you body isn’t moving properly, those communications start sending inappropriate messages to your muscles, organs and tissues. Those incorrect messages can create excessive inflammation, inefficient gait, weak muscles, etc.; all things that we spend a lot of time hoping to improve with our Primal lifestyles. Pain is usually the last signal that your body sends… Read more »
Dana
5 years 8 months ago

I had excellent results seeing a chiropractor. I had a hard time committing to 3 days a week for 6 months straight though. I find more flexibility in my neck than ever before, the pain in my sciatica on the right side is completely gone. I will likely pick it up again on a once a month basis to keep in check as I thoroughly agree with the practice of it in humans and animals. The office I went to also had thier patients exercise on physical therapy machines after the adjustment to help strengthen the muscles.

Aaron Curl
5 years 8 months ago
Yah, I’m sure all of our ancestors had grokopractors. 🙂 I kid. I’m 37 and have thrashed on my body and have never been to one personally. I also have been into fitness and/or active my entire life. I don’t know if the high activity levels kept my bones in good alignment or what. The biggest problem I have with it is…..what caused the misalignment in the first place? This is what needs to be fixed. It’s like all western medicine…they put bandaids on everything. We eat primal to prevent illness right? What can we do to prevent going to… Read more »
Mel
Mel
5 years 8 months ago
But a chiropractor helping you correct the cause is just a matter of having a good chiropractor. The chiropractor I’ve been seeing for almost a year (for a variety of things) always asks how you got into the situation you’re seeing him for and he always gives suggestions on how to correct the problem so you don’t re-injure yourself. There’s even a running joke around the office that as much as he loves all his patients, he’d like to see less of us so he could spend more time golfing. We’ve spent the last 3 months trying to figure out… Read more »
Minxxa
Minxxa
5 years 8 months ago
That’s nice! Exactly… a good doctor, or chiropractor or therapist should have an end result of getting rid of you! And like any profession there are good and bad ones. Maybe the biggest thing I’ve learned from my Dr. experience and the thing I’m taking away from this blog post is that you ALWAYS need to be aware of what qualities you are looking for in a health care (well, or any type of) provider. We should spend more time researching, and interviewing and talking to them. Frankly that’s the best way to find out if you should even try… Read more »
Dana
5 years 8 months ago
The chiropractor I went to goes through in depth information about what can cause mis-alignments. They say being born can wrench the spine out of alignment. As we go through our lives anything we do can have an effect on our spine; sitting in front of the computer, major or even minor accidents, stress, muscle injury, etc. Every nerve leading to each of our organs exits through the spine. When the vertebra are out of alignment they can put pressure on those nerves which inhibits normal functionality and can negatively effect whatever organ(s) it leads to. If it’s not corrected,… Read more »
Katherine
Katherine
5 years 8 months ago
“So it’s not just enchanted snake oil being used by greasy, non-vaccinating hippies. ” Some of this post is downright offensive. Though I am not a non-vaxer, I am a selective vaxer and user on complementary therapies. I am a Pagan and dress in Doc Martens and tie dye and listen to folk music. Formed a stereotyped view of me yet? I also have a biochemistry degree from a top UK university (where in fact I was taught on the shortcomings and concerns about vaccination), and have put a great deal of thought and research into the health choices I… Read more »
lisser
5 years 8 months ago

Katharine,

Relax a little. I’m pretty sure it was tongue in cheek.

Aaron Curl
5 years 8 months ago

Katherine,
Congratulations on that super expensive college degree. Why did anyone need to know this? Always remember, never let education interfere with knowledge, there is a difference between the two. I have no degrees but have an enlightened perception of reality. Which is better? Don’t take this offensive because it’s not mean to be. However, your mental mindset is what determines what is offensive in YOUR own mind, not mine. Smile 🙂

Katherine
Katherine
5 years 8 months ago
It wasn’t expensive, I’m British LOL. I thought it was reasonable evidence that I’m not some kind of stereotyped “idiot hippy” if there is such a thing. It was not in any way implying those without degrees are proven less intelligent though I suppose it could be read that way if someone chose to see it like that. I certainly have no interest in debating which of us has the better mind! Personally I am not averse to being offended. Nothing wrong with being passionate about things that matter to me. Healthier for me than going through life pretending I… Read more »
Cara
5 years 8 months ago

I agree with Katherine. The primal movement is getting a little too ‘meathead’ for my liking!

Katherine
Katherine
5 years 8 months ago

“It seems that even as CAM use increases, the use of frivolous, misguided CAM therapies like homeopathy are decreasing in favor of beneficial therapies that jibe with conventional medicine (that is, they work!). This is, then, a bittersweet trend, with the idiocy tainting the legit therapies.”

Frivolous? Idiocy? Seriously? It is very hard for me to understand why someone so committed to speaking out against CW in some areas should speak in this way about those who challenge it in other.

Yuck. Just yuck.

Alison
Alison
5 years 8 months ago

Homeopathy is WATER. It does NOT work any better than a placebo. This has been scientifically proven on many, many occasions.

Tracy
Tracy
5 years 8 months ago

Plastic surgeons now often prescribe or suggest the use of Arnica specifically. My daughters maxillofacial surgeon asked her to start taking it 2 weeks before surgery. There is always a study that will show the answer you want and then there are the studies that show the answer you don’t. It all depends on who does it and how they do it.

Jake
Jake
5 years 8 months ago
Where I live good primary care physicians will not take new Medicare patients. So my wife and I are forced to self test. I use Direct Labs where you can order any test a doctor can. Since I was scared of what might happen when I switched from high carb, low fat to Paleo, I took a number of tests before I changed my diet. Two years have gone by and I recently took a large number of tests (some more sophisticated than most doctors would order). My results were amazing, all of my blood values are off the chart… Read more »
CavePainter
CavePainter
5 years 8 months ago
Another possible reason that people are ordering their own labwork is so they do not get labeled with having a “pre-existing” condition by their doctor. Having a pre-existing condition could result in denial of benefits (soon to change with upcoming healthcare reform?), increased life insurance rates, etc, etc. Also wanted to mention that I’ve had excellent results with using homeopathy for treating certain specific conditions. I was skeptical of homeopathy for many years, but once I finally tried it I was amazed at the results. I know there’s no scientific explanation of it’s method of action (other than as a… Read more »
Primal K@
5 years 8 months ago
This portion is brilliant, Mark! “I’m entirely unconvinced that I need to test my cholesterol, because whatever values come back are not going to change the way I eat, work out, sleep, or live. I’m still going to eat lots of animal fat, lift heavy things, sprint once in awhile, get plenty of sleep, and try not to take life too seriously. As long as those things are going well, as long as I feel good, wake up without an alarm clock full of energy, hold my own on the Ultimate field and in the bedroom, I’m good. Those are… Read more »
Dana
5 years 8 months ago
The vaccination comment certainly hit a chord with me. I couldn’t get into College without my second booster which apparently my parents never did. I will definitely set out on my own one of these days and truly study the science behind the major vaccines. I can’t say one way or the other if they are good or bad, or both. I am however, against the flu shot. I haven’t had one in over 10 years. Yes, I have contracted the flu virus before, who hasn’t? but I don’t believe it was because I didn’t get a flu shot. The… Read more »
Jenny
Jenny
5 years 8 months ago

I can understand being confident in your ability to fight off the flu. But how about the ability of all the more vulnerable people to fight off the flu — you’re OK with an increased risk of you transmitting it to others who aren’t so healthy (and can’t all take the shot?)

Personally I see vaccines as a healthy training workout for my immune system. I’d rather it get practice using relatively innocuous strains.

anon to protect myself
anon to protect myself
5 years 8 months ago
I’ve been fortunate to not get the flu, or even a cold for the last 15 years. I own most of that to eating primal and supplementing with D3 so my level is 50-60. And I wash my hands a lot and keep them off my face. Yeah, I know, the flu is mostly droplet spread, but still… At any rate, yes they do miss the strain a lot. A couple of years ago we got our flu vaccine where I work at fire sale prices because they totally missed. And yet still the masses got their vaccinations. And I’ve… Read more »
localad
localad
5 years 8 months ago
I beleive the following is probably the best piece of advice that Mark has given the Primal community: “I’m entirely unconvinced that I need to test my cholesterol, because whatever values come back are not going to change the way I eat, work out, sleep, or live. I’m still going to eat lots of animal fat, lift heavy things, sprint once in awhile, get plenty of sleep, and try not to take life too seriously. As long as those things are going well, as long as I feel good, wake up without an alarm clock full of energy, hold my… Read more »
Jo Anne
Jo Anne
5 years 8 months ago

At my last doctor’s visit I inquired about checking my vitamin D level. My doctor informed me that my insurance wouldn’t cover it since my bone scan was normal. She said that the cost ran around $300 without insurance coverage. I checked online at DirectLabs and they only charge $59. No brainer.

CavePainter
CavePainter
5 years 8 months ago
Vaccines are a hot topic, I’d love to see a full blog post on it. I had all the usual vaccines when I was a kid 30+ years ago without any ill effects (that I know of), but I’ve never had a flu shot. 3 out of 4 people that I work with who got flu shots this year ended up getting the flu anyway. Two of them got it really bad too and missed several days work. I got sick too, but my only symptom was a minor sore throat that lasted a couple days. I’m not convinced that… Read more »
lisser
5 years 8 months ago

Check out the National Vaccine Information Center. The “swine flu” vaccine is now thought to have caused many women to miscarry.

Also, many of the flu vaccines are LIVE VIRUS vaccines. You can literally catch the flu from someone who was vaccinated. Nice eh?

Scott
Scott
5 years 8 months ago

Having my cholesterol and testosterone levels drawn next week. First time since going primal in August. I hope the numbers are good but I’m like you, I ain’t gonna change.

Cara
5 years 8 months ago
While I appreciate your message- that we must continue to consult doctors- I’m certainly not on board with homeopathy being ‘hogwash’! If fruits and vegetables are healing and what we were ‘designed’ to eat, how can the essences or tinctures of medicinal plants, be witchcraft? I recently recovered from an awful chest cold/infection that was going on 3+ weeks. The only thing THAT worked was homeopathy. I didn’t reach for it initially but was so desperate (I coughed so much at night my ribs were sore the next day), I consulted a naturopath and was given two very specific remedies… Read more »
Jenny
Jenny
5 years 8 months ago

But did what you get include something with an actual dosage level? Or was it one of the “homeopathic remedies” that are so diluted they have literally just a couple of molecules of the original compound included — or none — yet people claim there’s some kind of echoed resonance in the water that will cure you?

That kind of thing is what gives certain segments a bad rep.

Cara
5 years 8 months ago

Yes, I had dosage level, and instructions for how to take them. I followed it strictly, too.

Cara
5 years 8 months ago

and it cost $10!

meg
meg
5 years 8 months ago
You do realize the there is a very large difference between naturopathy, the use of natural herbs and compounds and homeopathy – which is based on the belief that the potency of certain remedies is increased by increased dilution? I think a lot of people conflate the two. One is completely reasonable, the other is quite frankly bullshit. When people say that homeopathic medicines are no better than placebos it’s because most of them are effectively water. The effects people get from them are basically placebo effects. That said, if homeopathy is a way to leverage the mind into healing… Read more »
fritzy
fritzy
5 years 8 months ago

True Homeopathic remedies are water and nothing else. There has never been one double-blind study of any kind that has shown them to be effective beyond a placebo effect. None.

Mark Sisson
5 years 8 months ago

Homeopathy is hogwash at best. The only reason it would ever work for anyone is as a placebo. (and placebos work 30-40% of the time). Do NOT confuse homeopathy with herbal medicine. They are entirely different. The only reason the FDA allows homeopathy to exist is because there is zero danger of harm to anyone using it. If you have any belief that homeopathy is real, take 15 minutes to view this video of James Randi. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BWE1tH93G9U

fritzy
fritzy
5 years 8 months ago
Thank you, Mark! I love James Randi! The idea behind homeopathy is that “like cures like.” A claim that has no backing in and of itself. But wait; there’s more–now we’re going to water this “cure” down to the point that it contain not even ONE molecule of the original material–just it’s “essence.” Ahh, the elusive “essence;” known in some circles as “nothing.” So really, you’re taking a cure that contains no cure. By this logic, you’ll heal even quicker if you just visit the homeopathy section of your local vitamin shop, find the “medicine” you’re supposed to take for… Read more »
Kristen
Kristen
5 years 8 months ago

Don’t knock it til you try it. You have dropped several levels in my book. Sad.

Kristen
Kristen
5 years 8 months ago

Obviously you have no personal experience with homeopathy. You can’t believe everything that you read Mark. You of all people should know that.

GirlinOz
GirlinOz
5 years 8 months ago

I second that. Homeopathy is not malarky and I have seen the evidence with my own eyes. Explain how it is only a placebo when it works on animals. It has a huge following the world over (its a highly regarded area of medicine in India and the English Royal Family use it, to name a couple).

Kristen
Kristen
5 years 8 months ago

Dear Mark,

As almost no doctor would advise you to go PB it takes a lot of trust to step into your 30 day PB challenge. I am asking you to forget all the medicinal CW you think you know, take a 30 day homeopathy challenge. Find a real homeopath, take your remedies, and stick with it for 30 days. Then we can talk.

Warmly,

Kristen

Jason
Jason
5 years 8 months ago

Kristen,
There are hundreds of thousands of years and numerous scientific studies to backup PB….there is not a single scientific study that I know of that speaks to the efficacy of homeopathy. If you can find one, let me know.

Kristen
Kristen
5 years 8 months ago

Jason,
If you look, you will find them. You will also find that homeopathy has been actively suppressed by the medical community for hundreds of years. Now who (big pharma)would want to do that? I will sign you up for the challenge as well.

lisser
5 years 8 months ago

Kristen: You are awesome!

I’m with Kristen on this one.

And for the record: Did you know that the homeopathic association existed before the AMA? They were essentially chased out of business. Did you also know that those little white pills for heart patients (nitroglycerin) is an age old homeopathic remedy?

Homeopathy and “western medicine” have a very interesting history.

Mark Sisson
5 years 8 months ago

Nitroglycerin in therapeutic doses is not homeopathic.

Robin
5 years 8 months ago
Mark, You say in your “about” section that you like to read research papers. Well start with this http://www.medscimonit.com/fulltxt.php?ICID=470153 click “for personal use” then “I agree” and then “free download” No registration needed. This is just a start. and it took me 5 seconds on google to find it. To go deeper try researching some of the terms used in the article like “hormesis” or “Epitaxy” Also this article gives some reasons why placebo tests would turn out badly for homeopathic medicines. Namely the very holistic approach which is used in homeopathic medicine. http://abchomeopathy.com/scientific.htm Then try some your self and… Read more »
Cara
5 years 8 months ago

Kristen, I completely agree! How about it Mark?

Cara

Alexandra
Alexandra
5 years 8 months ago

I enjoy reading Mark’s blogs on eating primal and his take on issues on health and vitality, however stating that homeopathy is ‘hogwash, certainly does not ring true for me.
I agree with you Cara and have used energy medicine under the guidance of a trained homeopath and naturopath (homeopathy, bach flowers, aromatherapy, medicinal herbs) as my form of medicine for over 15 years and it works! Allopathic medicine has its place, (in emergency particularly) however these intergrative modalities such as homeopathy have worked wonders for me, my family and friends.

rob
rob
5 years 8 months ago

Wow on one thread we get the anti-vaccine people, the homeopathy people and aromatherapy too.

I have a magic newt that I rub against your forehead to keep you free from fevers …

Heidi
5 years 8 months ago

WOW!

Kristina
Kristina
5 years 8 months ago

She turned me into a newt! BURN HER! lololol

Mark Sisson
5 years 8 months ago

Who are you who are so wise in the ways of science?

Kristina
Kristina
5 years 8 months ago

If she weighed the same as a duck… she’s made of wood.

Cara
5 years 8 months ago

What about herbalism?

Mark Sisson
5 years 8 months ago

Herbalism is entirely different. I have no problem with some aspects of herbal medicine.

Cara
5 years 8 months ago

NOW everyone cares about the scientific studies? Don’t we Paleo/Primal peeps spend most of our time disputing such studies? Just saying!

Jason
Jason
5 years 8 months ago
Ummm…no. I think most Paleo people are very scientifically motivated. We’ve studied the science of our ancestors to determine the diet they’ve eaten and we’ve looked at the science in the low carb diets. Current nutritional guidelines are NOT based on science. Vaccines are based on science. Homeopathy is NOT based on science. Again, there is not a single scientific study that has shown any efficacy of homeopathy. Any benefit you or anyone else has received is purely as a placebo..it works because you WANT it to work! There is nothing wrong with this, other than you’re paying hundreds of… Read more »
Cara
5 years 8 months ago
Look, I know what works for me and I know it was not a placebo effect. I think its dogmatic, judgmental, and incredibly ignorant for someone to tell me its hogwash (especially in an online forum)! Scientific studies do not hold all the answers. Scientists are the first to tell you there’s alot they/we do not know. Paleo/primal folks are used to preaching (I’m guilty as well) but let’s not be so quick to judge all alternative therapies. The tone of Mark’s post above is full of Grok rhetoric. I really mean no offense here, just my opinion, but with… Read more »
Cara
5 years 8 months ago

I meant to say that we PB followers spend alot of time discrediting the most widely read studies. I just read one… went something like ‘why meat is bad for’. Based on a scientific study. We primal ppl have our own food pyramid, for crying out loud! Let’s not pretend we have all of science behind us…It’s our interpretation of these studies, which is certainly not widely accepted in the medical or scientific community.

Denise
Denise
5 years 8 months ago

Sorry but I won’t ignore the entire medical profession just based on how I “feel” and through the advice of popular diet books – people have been known to die of heart attacks without any warning signs. Also I’ll continue to get my cancer screenings on a regular basis. I think doctors still have an important role to play in my life.

Zoebird
5 years 8 months ago
so, i take it you really don’t like homeopathy? lol for me, scientific studies are interesting, but often incomplete. because they are usually dealing with such a narrow band of material, and focusing on such a minute detail of it, well, it often reminds me of “the blind man and the elephant” allegory. much of CAM or holistic medicine or whatever you want to call it has a different way. TCM is not “proven” by western studies (some aspects of them are, btw, but not all). yet, TCM has been practiced (and thereby studied) for thousands of years. Ayurveda has… Read more »
Cara
5 years 8 months ago

excellent points, Zoebird.

Dana
Dana
5 years 8 months ago
I don’t dismiss homeopathy and it has nothing to do with not having a sound head on my shoulders. The whole premise of the lipid hypothesis of heart disease was based on some so-called scientists deciding it “made sense.” That’s not a sound scientific argument. At most it’s a hypothesis. Likewise, saying something “doesn’t make sense” is yet another hypothesis. Insults aren’t science either. Don’t just call someone a quack. Have some double-blind, placebo-controlled studies to back yourself up and just point to those. I don’t care how many times you gotta do it, just do it–that is how you… Read more »
DaiaRavi
5 years 8 months ago
great comments Dana. in 1994 (with more research data subsequently) it was discovered that being deficient in selenium has a significant impact on the ability to both resist and eliminate the polio virus (as well as other viruses). Selenium has a special place in regards to our DNA – as there is a receptor for selenium within the DNA structure (indicative of its relative importance). Good, balanced omnivorous diets in most cases, provide adequate levels of selenium – if not, it can be supplemented easily and cheaply. if anyone is interested, the link to the article is in my blog… Read more »
DaiaRavi
5 years 8 months ago

Dana – have always liked your sensibilities and posts – will you contact us at our website, we’d like to proposition you (ooohhhh! 😉 )

Aurelia
Aurelia
5 years 8 months ago

Hey Mark…this topic seems almost as touchy as that post about circumcision…woohoo!

John
John
5 years 8 months ago

There’s a hilarious skit on homeopathy at:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HMGIbOGu8q0

Matthew Myers
5 years 8 months ago

Personally, I’ve never had any blood work, lipids, A1c’s, etc. done. I switched over to a Primal/paleo lifestyle over 1 year ago, and have never felt better. Anytime I feel compelled to get blood-work done, it’s usually to PROVE to others that this lifestyle really works. I know going purely off of anecdotal evidence is a potentially slippery slope, but it really would be nice to be able to get some of my friends/family to try it without putting me through an inquisition. Guess you just gotta keep pluggin’ away.

slacker
slacker
5 years 8 months ago

Great post, as usual. But I’m not ready to I assume that all homeopathy is bunk on its face. Its remedies should stand up to the same kind of testing that other interventions do, however. As a retired environmental wonk, I can testify that some toxic substances have serious effects at concentrations of a few parts per billion. It is not beyond reason then that some substances have therapeutic doses in similar concentrations.

Alison
Alison
5 years 8 months ago
That’s the thing, though. No homeopathic remedy has EVER passed properly controlled scientific trials as being any more effective than a placebo, and in any case, you aren’t getting “a few parts per billion” with homeopathic remedies. Most of them are marked “30C” which means you get one part active ingredient to 100^30 parts water (or, one drop of active substance in 100 drops of water, thirty times). So, in other words, to get one molecule of the active ingredient, you’d need to consume all the molecules in the solar system. Even homeopaths agree that there’s nothing but water in… Read more »
DaiaRavi
5 years 8 months ago

Before all you folks get too invested in depending on the wonderful published scientific studies that validate CW medicine/drugs, maybe you check out this PEER REVIEW MEDICAL JOURNAL article about “Why Most Published Research Findings Are False”…

http://www.plosmedicine.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pmed.0020124

Cj
Cj
5 years 8 months ago

Wow! Imagine assuming that we have a reasoned, intelligent populace that knows how to read, research and put two and two together. I have done the above, and my doc, who is a doc of functional medicine, looked the test results over, WE came up with a plan of action, and the world is now all peachy! My ORIGINAL doc, who thought his name was God, and who is now history, was indignant that I would dare think for myself. Go for it!

honeybee
honeybee
5 years 8 months ago

I am firmly in the pro-homeopathy camp.

A lot of people think my belief in the claims of Christianity is “malarky” as well.

I can’t prove either of them scientifically, but then again, I don’t see the need to.

Jen
Jen
5 years 8 months ago
Regardless of the subject – food, health, raising children, vaccines . . . I firmly believe more information and options are better than less. It is each person’s responsibility to do their own research, seek out the right professionals and ultimately make their own decisions about their health (and take responsibility for the consequences). I have conquered several health conditions (cancer, dermographism, hypotyroid, pulmonary fibrosis, fatigue, IBS and more things that some told me were incurable) and have used several resources who have guided my journey like my doctor, herbalist, chiropractor, and Mark (of course!) along with tons and tons… Read more »
Bonnie
5 years 8 months ago
I have had one instance when a naturopath gave me a homeopathic remedy that I think really helped. However, mostly I find that my body doesn’t seem to respond. Maybe I don’t have really good homeopathic doctors? My cats, though. Well they respond. I had a cat diagnosed by a traditional veterinarian and all the testing money could buy with mid-range cardiomyapathy. In cats this means living about five years. I took him to an alternative vet thinking about Chinese herbal medicine which I would then use. However, she used a homeopathic remedy. He seemed fine. The next year I… Read more »
honeybee
honeybee
5 years 8 months ago

Bonnie,

I think it is always a mistake to take homeopathic medications that are prescribed from someone who is not a rigorously trained homeopath — and one who *only* practices homeopathy.

This is where a lot of people have disappointing results from homeopathy. They take remedies prescribed by other alternative medicine practitioners who do not have a clear idea of the theory and art and science of homeopathy — they think it’s just another tool and they don’t understand it well.

Find yourself a true homeopath and see if you don’t have better results.

Bonnie
5 years 8 months ago
My naturopaths who work with homeopathy are trained in homeopathy. They are not classical homeopaths but the remedy that worked so well was not a classical remedy either. My vet is classically trained they use only one remedy. As my issues are merely colds, some allergies and perhaps the flu, I generally work with the medicine I practice, which is acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine along with some supplements for which I work with a naturopath. However I think that the fact that homeopathy does work with pets shows that there is something more than a placebo effect going on.… Read more »
jem
jem
5 years 8 months ago

In my family we have both a vac reaction and polio. So this is a sensitive subject.

What we’ve chosen, for the most part, is to vaccinate but separately rather than the stacked variety.

My dad had polio when he was 8. He died of post polio syndrome. So, yes, we all vaccinate for it. No discussion. We all saw how his entire life was effected.

We have chosen not to vaccinate for chicken pox, etc and never seasonal stuff, (although I vaccinate peop).

Phocion Timone
Phocion Timone
5 years 8 months ago
When I got married almost 30 years ago I had a very tough time convincing my wife she doesn’t have to go to the Witch Doctor for every little ailment. (She still looks to the doctors for problems I think are insignificant but there you go.) I did not, and still do not, go to the doctor unless I am truly I am truly in trouble. Now, having said that, I will tell you my medical bills in the past averaged about $2000 per year due to high blood pressure, a “pre-” diabetic diagnosis, a twenty year battle with gout,… Read more »
fitmom
fitmom
5 years 8 months ago

Mark, just keep in mind that most people find greasy, unvaccinated homeopathic hippies MUCH, MUCH more normal than us primal lard-loving, wheat-averse, whole-grain hating health nuts! Some of us might even be all of the above….

wpDiscuz