You might have a hard time accepting the idea that we don’t have to live in a medicated world, but that we choose to. The heart of the matter is that instead of proactively thinking about prevention, we choose to treat the symptoms of underlying health problems, as we have been told, with medication…We, as a culture, want the quick fix so we can continue our poor lifestyle and dietary habits. We want to be able to eat that chili-cheese dog and when we get heartburn or indigestion, we want (and expect) a pill to fix it. We turn to pills for everything, from headaches and acid reflux to cholesterol and arthritis symptoms. These medications only serve as band-aids for larger systemic problems, which are usually a result of a poor diet and lifestyle. It doesn’t have to be this way, but it is. We can blame doctors, the medical institutions and health-care systems all we want, but self-responsibility is our only recourse if we are ever to recover from this mess. The time has come to see your body as one whole organism, not just a collection of ailing parts. Once you begin treating your body as a whole, you can begin to address the larger issue that is, for instance, causing the headache, or acid reflux, even high cholesterol and arthritis. If you are taking any of the drugs listed below, consult with a Natural Health Practitioner about phasing out your medication and phasing in these powerful natural foods and remedies. I know it can be scary, especially if they are helping to suppress pain. But the truth is, they aren’t actually preventing the pain from happening, they are just temporarily masking the problem, sadly, they aren’t fixing anything. In fact, they are causing even more systemic damage every time you take one.
“Of the over 4 billion prescriptions written every year, the United States and Canada make up more than 80% of the world’s prescription opiates (psychoactive medications). Between 1997 and 2012 prescription opiates increased in dosage by almost 500%. Pharmaceuticals and medical errors are now a leading cause of death. Painkillers are the leading cause of accidental death.”
“Prescriptions for pain, cholesterol reduction, high blood pressure, hypothyroidism, antacids, diabetes and antibiotics make up 100% of the most prescribed drugs.”
So, Please make a commitment to yourself right now and start incorporating some of these amazing foods into your diet. The best part is they don’t have a long list of adverse consequence of side effects! When you fully understand the risk/reward aspect, you will get off prescription medications for good. I did, and I have never regretted it for one moment. The reality is, getting off those medications saved my life AND I am now pain-free, have increased energy, and sleep like a baby.
1. HYDROCODONE (Acetaminophen/Vicodin/Oxycontin)
Use: For Pain
Currently the single most prescribed drug in the world. More and more doctors are getting huge payouts from pharmaceutical companies to promote these hydrocodone, especially generic drugs. They make up more than 20% of the top prescribed medications.
Risks Involved: Respiratory depression; bradycardia; coma; seizures; cardiac arrest; liver damage; and death.
Natural Food Alternatives: Ginger, turmeric, berries, cayenne pepper, celery/celery seeds, cherries, dark green veggies, walnuts. See the complete list of foods that fight Inflammation
2. STATINS (Generic versions of Lipitor/Zocor/Crestor)
Use: Reduction of LDL Cholesterol
Approximately 15% of the top prescribed medications are generic statins. A study published in January 2012 in the Archives of Internal Medicine linked statins to a 48 percent increased risk for type-2 diabetes.
The are NO scientific studies ever documented which have proved through causation that lowering LDL cholesterol prevents disease. In fact, some believe, the obsessed culture of lowering cholesterol may actually be causing cancer.
Risks Involved: Inflammation and pathological breakdown of muscle, acute kidney failure, diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular disease, interference with sex hormones and death.
Natural Food Alternatives: Nuts, spinach, apples, turmeric, cranberries, tomatoes, green tea, fatty fish, beans, alfalfa herb, capsicum fruit, garlic, psyllium, fenugreek seeds, butcher’s broom, licorice root, hawthorn berry.
Use: Reduction of High Blood Pressure
In combination, Lisinopril and Norvasc make up a whopping 23% of the top prescribed medications. This makes them the most prescribed generic medications (if combined) for cardiovascular disease and blood pressure.
Risks Involved: Cancer, blood disorders, development of breasts in men, impotence, depression, tachycardia, enlargement of gums, inflammation of the liver, elevated blood glucose, hepatitis, life threatening skin conditions.
Natural Food Alternatives: Any foods high in vitamin C (chili peppers, guavas, bell peppers, thyme, parsley, dark leafy greens, broccoli), any foods high in magnesium (chocolate, green leafy vegetables, Brazil nuts, almonds, cashews, blackstrap molasses, pumpkin and squash seeds, pine nuts, and black walnuts) and any foods high in potassium (mushrooms, bananas, dark green leafy vegetables, sweet potatoes, oranges and dates). Coconut oil/water and CoQ10 are also very effective for lowering blood pressure.
4. SYNTHROID (levothyroxine sodium)
A synthetic form of the thyroid hormone thyroxine, generic Synthroid makes up more than 11% of the top prescribed medications. It’s used to treat hypothyroidism.
Risks Involved: Long-term suppression of thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) causes cardiac side-effects and contributes to decreases in bone mineral density (high TSH levels are also well known to contributes to osteoporosis.) May also cause elevated blood glucose levels, heart failure, coma and adrenal insufficiency. TSH directly influences the whole process of iodine trapping and thyroid hormone production so use of synthroid directly affects how the body metabolizes iodine.
Natural Food Alternatives: Any foods containing iodine such as seaweed, kelp, radish, parsley, fish, seafood, eggs, bananas, cranberries, strawberries, himalayan crystal salt. Also, copper, iron, selenium and zinc are essential in the production of thyroid hormones.
5. PRILOSEC (omeprazole/generic versions of nexium)
A proton pump inhibitor which constitutes just over 8% of the top prescribed medications. Omeprazole is one of the most widely prescribed drugs for reflux disease (GORD/GERD/LPR) and ulcers internationally and is available over the counter in some countries.
Risks Involved: Angina, ulcers, tachycardia, bradycardia, palpitations, elevated blood pressure, development of male breasts, inflammation of the pancreas, irritable colon, mucosal atrophy of the tongue, liver disease/failure, elevated blood sugar, muscle weakness, skin conditions, tinnitus, inflammation of the eyes, urinary frequency, testicular pain, anemia and blood cell disorders.
Natural Food Alternatives: Grapefruits, probiotics, broccoli sprouts, manuka honey, mastic gum, marshmallow tea, glutamine, slippery elm, aloe vera juice, baking soda.
In combination, azithromycin and amoxicillin contribute towards a mind-blowing 17% of the top prescribed medications. Then we wonder why we have antibiotic resistance. On their own, each contributes about 8.5%. Azithromycin is one of the world’s best-selling antibiotics and derived from erythromycin. Amoxicillin is usually the drug of choice for children.
Risks Involved: Inflammation of the liver, inflammation and destruction of the stomach lining, destruction of healthy bacterial populations, inflammation of the colon, allergic reactions, obesity, human antibiotic resistance.
Natural Food Alternatives: Sunlight (vit D), garlic, coconut oil, turmeric, foods high in nicotinamide (vit B3) such as salmon, sardines and nuts. Also manuka honey, olive leaf extract, green tea, pau D’Arco, rose water, myrrh, grapeseed extract, golden seal, oregon grapes, oregano oil, andrographis paniculata, and probiotics.
7. GLUCOPHAGE (metformin)
Use: Oral anti-diabetic drug
Glucophage drugs round up the top 7 but the prescription rate of this drug is rapidly increasing. It makes up about 7% of the top prescribed medications. It is the first-line drug of choice for the treatment of type 2 diabetes, in particular, in overweight and obese people. It also acts to indirectly lower LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
Risks Involved: Lactic acidosis, impaired liver/kidney function, decreasing thyroid stimulating hormone and testosterone, increased homocysteine levels, malabsorption of vitamin B12, B12 deficiency, bladder cancer, heart failure. The biggest consequence of diabetes drugs is that it causes pancreatic function to substantially decrease inhibiting several hormones and causing other imbalances which are never correctable without abstaining from the drug.
Natural Food Alternatives: Black tea, Sunlight (vit D), turmeric, nuts, chia seeds, green leafy vegetables, apple cider vinegar, cinnamon, red grapes, steel cut oatmeal, broccoli, spinach, green beans and strawberries. 90% of all cases of diabetes can be resolved by eating foods with a low glycemic load, and pursuing both weight training and aerobic exercise.