04 Mar Are You Worried About Staying on Medications?
Are You Worried About Staying on Medications?
LOTS of people are on medications.
Medications generally suppress symptoms. But they do little to address the root cause of your health problem.
Come off the medication and the symptom is likely to come back.
Some medications provide the relief required (e.g. for pain, reflux or sinus problems) to enable you to get on with your day productively. They really can be a ‘life saver’ when you get to the point you can no longer function properly.
But Should You Stay on Medications for Ever?
A lot is known about the short-term side effects of medications. Large studies are carried out to determine the short-term side effects to get the drug released for sale.
Although, this said, how a person will react to a medication comes down to the individual involved.
But what is not known so well (or in many cases at all) is the long-term side effects of medication. If a medication has been on the market for 5 years, they have no idea of what the 10 year side effect of that medication is because it simply hasn’t been around for long enough.
For example, ACE inhibitors (typically used for high blood pressure) has now been associated with higher risk of developing lung cancer. https://www.bmj.com/content/363/bmj.k4471
More Than One Medication
The other issue is when you take more than one medication.
For each additional medication you take it changes the chemical make up in your blood stream. If you take drug #1, then the short-term side effects are known. But what happens when you also take drug #2? And drug #3…?
Some people take 10-15 medications. It is not possible to know what the true short and long-term effects of that complex cocktail of chemicals will be.
Why Do Medications Lead to Side Effects?
Medications are often based on plants. The compound that has a certain beneficial effect is identified, isolated and produced synthetically.
You were never meant to consume the synthetically produced, isolated compound – you were meant to have the rest of the natural plant around it to balance it out (this is why Chinese herbs rarely lead to side effects, as we use the whole herb).
Also, high concentrations of the isolated compound can lead to side effects too.
What Can You Do?
I am in no-way advising you to come off your medications. This is something you must discuss with your health professional.
But what I am saying is that there is often another way. Rather than trying to suppress the symptoms with drugs, address the root cause of the problem so you may no longer need to take the drug.
And this requires a totally different way of looking at the problem and your health. Chinese medicine does just that.
You may be able to stop (or at least reduce) many medications if you successfully address the root cause of the problem. There are some medications, however, that you may not be able to stop because of your condition, the medication’s function and whether you have become dependent on it. But these medications will generally be the ‘more serious’ ones.
You are responsible for your own health.
You owe it to yourself to look at how you can address the root cause of your health problems while you are managing the symptoms through medication.