One common, off-the-cuff mainstream criticism of alternative medicine is that it is not evidence-based. It is not possible for anyone who works for or advocates conventional medicine to say that without dangling from one of the higher peaks of hypocrisy. Even if you don’t agree, the fact that large crowds are increasingly giving the alternatives a try indicates there is a problem with the mainstream. Many people’s personal experience with conventional medicine is unsatisfactory, so who cares if it is scientific? Perhaps we should not gullibly accept everything published on Medline just because it is published on Medline.
Dr. Feroz, a WAPF chapter leader in Pakistan, is obviously not suggesting that we immerse ourselves in conventional medicine in order to live as nature intended. She covers a wide range of alternative subjects. One topic briefly touched is the fascinating work of Dr. Fritz Albert Popp on the biophoton field. He has found that DNA generates very weak, coherent (laser-like) signals at frequencies of several billion hertz and uses those signals to communicate among cells. Unfortunately, cell phones also operate at those frequencies so getting too cozy with your cell phone is not going to be good for your health.
This book takes a holistic approach to health and a lot of subjects are covered over a lot of pages. The nutrition theme is pervasive and is consistent with WAPF principles.
The importance of liver health is another major theme. Problems with the liver eventually cascade into problems all over the body. There are at least thirty metabolic functions performed by the liver. While filtering and detoxification functions are well-known, other lesser-known functions include storing minerals and vitamins, including fat-soluble vitamins; constructing about fifty thousand enzyme systems used throughout the body; and helping maintain blood pressure, blood sugar regulation and electrolyte balance. That is merely the very short list.
UCLA research compiled another list of behaviors associated with a healthy lifestyle. If you want to try those suggestions, they would be: sleeping seven or eight hours a night, eating breakfast, not eating between meals, maintaining normal weight, regular physical activity, engaging in moderate drinking, and not smoking. A quote from the May 2007 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association says “Evidently, the ruse is over regarding the need for useless drugs. . . especially when simple lifestyle changes are just as effective. . . ” TheBritish Medical Journal stated that lifestyle changes are at least as effective as prescription drugs in reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes. The New England Journal of Medicine confirmed that statement.
Dr. Feroz quotes an observation to the effect that exercise is generally useless for weight loss. My personal experience is that while that opinion is controversial, it is nevertheless true. Exercise is a good thing but won’t help most people much with weight loss if diet is not addressed, but not in the way it is conventionally considered. Another controversial observation along the same lines is that calorie counting is a huge scam. I would have to agree with that too. In fact, if you are a patient of Dr. Feroz, you are not allowed to count calories. That should be a no-brainer. Many people have been desperately depriving themselves of calories (or trying to) for decades now. Look around. How’s that working out?
Timing is everything. That might be a slight exaggeration but timing is discussed extensively as it relates to a healthy lifestyle. It makes a difference when you sleep, how long you sleep, when you eat breakfast and other meals. The connection between lack of sleep and lack of health is pretty well known by now. It seems that eating breakfast is correlated with a smaller waist and better cognitive function.
Speaking of thinking clearly, chapter fourteen gives the reader some quotes from Dr. Russell Blaylock explaining that we have an epidemic of neurological disorders that used to be rare. While neurosciences literature has no explanation (perhaps because that group of scientists doesn’t eat breakfast) there is a long list of likely causes, from MSG to aluminum, lead, mercury and pesticide exposure, to mineral deficiencies, to trans fats, to lack of probiotics, to watching too much television.
The subject of women’s health comes up toward the end of the book. Dr. Joan Borysenko is quoted as stating that “Women tend to be excluded from medical studies because they are too complicated to understand. That’s something every man has known for the past several thousand years.” Perhaps some of the confusion is due to all the spin that occurs when the British Medical Journal reports that there are 29 percent more deaths from breast cancer among those who had mammography compared to those who didn’t. The spin gets dizzying as vested interests try to explain why that doesn’t mean you stop scheduling those regular mammograms. If you had breakfast this morning you may already know the thumb is UP for this book.
This article appeared in Wise Traditions in Food, Farming and the Healing Arts, the quarterly magazine of the Weston A. Price Foundation, Fall 2012.