BS Medicine a.k.a. Best Science Medicine podcast is presented by James McCormack, a Canadian pharmaceutical scientist. With a large doses of humor, he tells us:
we are over-medicated;
drug side effects can be worse than the disease;
we don’t have to treat diseases of age so aggressively;
we don’t have to worry so hard, if only we live moderately, exercise, de-stress.
Let’s say your blood pressure is above the textbook limit of 140/90, and we medicate it down to avoid a stroke. Statistics say medication will prevent a stroke for 1 or 2 people in 100. But 10 of them will have such harmful side effects that they have to quit the drug.
Exercise, diet, and stress-relief is more effective than a drug.
Cholesterol-lowering statins are preventing heart attacks for only 1% of those who take them. Statins harm up to 12% of the people who take them.
Pills for type 2 diabetics and Alzheimer’s are also called into question.
McCormack shows us surprising scientific studies, which have demonstrated:
Medicating mild high blood pressure, (systolic higher than 160) shows no benefit.
Aggressive blood pressure lowering (below 140) for most type 2 diabetics has no benefit.
Aggressive glucose lowering, to get below 7.5 A1C for type 2 diabetics, has little benefit and may worsen the outcome.
No studies have been able to prove that salt or fat restriction reduces the chance of cardiovascular disease.
Salt restriction in heart failure actually increases cardiovascular events and mortality.
“Whoa! How can this be?” my coworkers yell. My dear neighbor nurses and doctors, don’t shoot the messenger, I just had to start the conversation . . .
BS Medicine encourages fewer pharmaceuticals or much lower doses of pharmaceuticals. They demonstrate, by the evidence, that we could lighten up on prescribing:
Blood pressure pills
For older adults who take lots of medications, discontinuing their meds usually revealed that four or five meds could be stopped. After stopping them, 80% of the people reported overall improvement in health. 2% of the drugs needed to be restarted.
Remember, you hire your doctor for his/her services, and it is fine to bring up your opinions, your concerns, and any changes you would like to try. Lightening up our cumbersome medical system rests in our own hands.
The BS medicine website presents humorous short films about all this. Check them out.
Their their main prescription for good health:
Eat good food, exercise, de-stress, love your friends and family. Go for it.
see also Clear the Sludge without Statins