Sunday Thoughts (myth-busting)
I’m not a doctor. And I have tremendous respect for those who go into the profession.
But I wonder if some doctors have forgotten the whole point.
Shouldn’t the goal be to keep someone healthy, instead of trying to repair things after they break down?
Shouldn’t they understand the reality of our hectic lives, the truth about what the American diet really looks like – and open their eyes to see a nation that’s more sick than well?
Like I said, I’m not an MD.
But I’ve been in and around the health world for over 20 years. I’ve read reams of studies, talked to enlightened physicians, and worked with scientists and researchers from around the world.
So I know a thing or two about the healing benefits of food, and their natural partner in a healing diet, nutritional supplements.
That’s why when a journal as prestigious as JAMA publishes a one-page “patient resource” that brushes off supplements as unnecessary, it leaves me speechless.
Check that. I have plenty to say about it.
Let’s dive in, shall we?
“Do I need to take a vitamin or supplement? For most people, the answer is no. For years, doctors have recommended certain supplements such as fish oil or multivitamins. However, these claims have not been supported by evidence from medical research.”
This is complete bull pucks.
There are literally tens of thousands of studies that show specific benefits from nutritional supplements, for a wide range of health concerns, and just to simply keep you healthy. To say none are supported by evidence is not only wrong, it’s dangerous.
For goodness sake, some great studies about supplements have been PUBLISHED IN THE VERY SAME JOURNAL.
Ok, deep breath.
“Is a balanced diet better than a supplement? A balanced diet of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, some cheeses, fish, poultry, or lean meats provides all needed vitamins and nutrients. Evidence suggests that our body is better at absorbing nutrients from food than from supplements. Whole foods also provide the amounts and ratios of nutrients that our body can most efficiently use. Evidence shows that people who eat a balanced diet have positive health benefits, and these benefits are not found in supplements. Vitamins and supplements cannot make up for a less-than-healthy diet.”
This is a mixed bag of true, half-true and nonsense.
Should we be eating a balanced diet? Most definitely.
Is it possible to get everything you need from diet alone? In theory, maybe. But this leaves out a world of nutrients we are unlikely to get in our regular diets.
And are we actually eating healthful diets that include a wide enough range of nutrients, and taking advantage of what’s been shown to be beneficial to human health from diet alone?
Ha, not even close.
I mean, when you say there’s no need to use supplements because fortified milk and breakfast cereals are available, I have to wonder where you got your medical degree.
Can our body absorb nutrients from food better than supplements? Sometimes yes, sometimes no. It depends entirely on the quality of the supplement, and how it is formulated.
And once again, do supplements show “no benefits?” Seriously wrong, total garbage.
I could go on picking this “advice” apart all day, but to imply supplements offer no benefits when literally 9 out of 10 Americans are dangerously deficient in vital nutrients, and a vast majority don’t come close to the necessary levels of fruits and vegetables, is malpractice if you ask me.
And to suggest supplements should be looked at with caution when thousands of people are dying each year due to prescription drugs “used as directed” is laughable.
My advice to you is to stay informed. Do your own research. Read.
And don’t believe only drugs and surgery can make you “well.”
JAMA should be ashamed of themselves for publishing this poor excuse for advice.