Let Food Be Your Medicine and Medicine Be Your Food
by Siegfried Gursche, MH
Isn’t it absurd that we call the modalities of natural healing "alternative medicine"? Obviously, "alternative" refers to something other than the accepted or the standard. The opposite to "alternative medicine" is what we now call orthodox or allopathic medicine, which then makes it the standard.
This really irks me. For 2,200 years until 1805, medicine was practiced exclusively according to the ancient Greek physician Hippocrates (460-377 BC), the founding father of natural medicine. He taught that the first and foremost principle of medicine must be to respect nature’s healing forces, which inhabit each living organism. Hippocrates considered illness a natural phenomenon that forced people to discover the imbalances in their health. He strongly believed in good food and related the course of any ailment to poor nutrition and bad eating habits. He stressed, "Let food be your medicine and medicine be your food"–advice that, to this day, has not lost its validity.
I mention the year 1805 because in that year in the small town of Einbeck, where I went to school and enrolled in my apprenticeship, German pharmacist Friedrich Wilhelm Serturner (1783-1841) discovered morphine, named after Morpheus, the god of dreams. Morphine is the bitter, white crystalline found in opium, the milky sap of the unripe poppy. This was the first time, and a significant moment in pharmaceutical history, that a single potent ingredient, an alkaloid, was isolated.
Sertruner was celebrated "freeman of the city," and to this day his pharmacy and discovery are subjects of school projects for students of Einbeck. Hence, the awakening of my desire to become a pharmacist, which, however, never materialized due to unfavorable circumstances during the war and thereafter. Instead, I chose natural health as my profession and my passion.
Ever since morphine was isolated, pharmacists and scientists all over the world turned their backs on the natural healing effects of the synergistic complex of herbs, instead concentrating on finding that magical single ingredient hidden within the plant.
Out of this initial success of isolating single active agents grew today’s mighty phytochemical and chemo-therapeutical industry. Scientists found it easier to work with chemicals, and inherent side-effects of administering single substances were ignored or downplayed. With its financial power, the pharmaceutical industry soon gained control over modern medicine. The use of drugs in treating ailments is taught at universities, and doctors must adhere to this doctrine once in practice. It is actually a crime for them to prescribe natural substances such as herbs or vitamins.
If they do, the College of Physicians and Surgeons will accuse them of unprofessional conduct and cancel their licenses.
Meanwhile, we are observing a renaissance, a revival of herbal medicine. Scientists are discovering that not only herbs, but also foods contain synergistic groups of ingredients that provide medicinal benefit. These groups are referred to as "secondary ingredients" because previously we believed they were of lesser value. Their action couldn’t be explained, though considered to be important. These ingredients include, among many others, carotenoids, flavonoids, phenols, estrogens and enzyme inhibitors. The Europeans have coined a fancy name for them, phytochemicals, which means "plant-based."
Almost daily we hear of new miraculous benefits of one of those phytochemicals discovered in herbs and food. Pigments or colouring agents are now known to be of benefit in the treatment of cancer, especially lycopene from tomatoes and beets. Now we truly can relate to what Hippocrates proclaimed: Let food be your medicine and medicine be your food.
About the Author
Siegfried Gursche is the founder of Alive Publishing Group Inc. Respected as a pioneer of the Canadian health food industry since 1954, he continues to educate and inspire people through book and magazine publishing.
This no-holds-barred book, The Confessions of a Medical Heretic lays out the lie of "modern" medicine. Immediately the struggles faced by many are laid out clear and summarized by the author, Dr. Robert Mendelsohn. Dr. Mendelshon an experienced and senior medical doctor – known to millions of Americans through his nationally syndicated column The People’s Doctor. He was an associate professor at the University of Illinois Medical School and a director of Chicago’s Michael Reese Hospital. He was also chairman of the Medical Licensure Committee of the state of Illinois. Read what he wrote below.
Big Pharma Greed
Politics and corruption of our systems has developed over the last century. With the realization of health benefits of a proper diet, profiteers have taken over the medical profession, promoting the products of Big Pharma and also changing the food industry to promote illness thereby increasing profits for Big Pharma.
Death rates and the discovery of new diseases has increased in a direct proportion to the decease in nutritional value of our food stuffs.
Farming practices have changed dramatically since the 50's. Here in the US we have gone from 4th in the world for life expectancy down to 49th, directly because of Big Pharma's political conniving. The evidence of the corrupt take over of healthcare is so overwhelming it is hard to find a place to start.
(More posts and links coming in the near future.)
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Dr. Mendelsohn confessed that:
· I once believed in modern medicine … But, I no longer believe in modern medicine.
· I believe that …the greatest danger to your health is the doctor who practices modern medicine…I believe that more than ninety percent of Modern Medicine could disappear from the face of the earth – doctors, hospitals, drugs and equipment – and the effect on our health would be … beneficial.
· I believe that modern medicine’s treatment for disease are seldom effective and that they’re often more dangerous than the diseases they’re designed to treat.
The following are Dr. Mendelsohn’s advices to you and me:
· I don’t advise anyone who has no symptoms to go to the doctor for a physical examination. For those with symptoms, it is not such a good idea, either. Unless of course it is an emergency like accidents, etc.
Dr. Mendelsohn reminded us that, If you are foolish enough to make yearly visit for a routine check-up, to be aware of the following:
1) Beware that you may be used for purposes other than your own. You may be subjected or asked to undergo certain procedures for the doctor’s own good.
2) Be reminded that doctors are unable to recognize wellness. They are trained to treat diseases and most likely he will always find something wrong with you.
3) As long as the doctor is in control, he can define and manipulate the limits of health and diseases anyway he chooses. Of course, not all are that dishonest. But the worse scenario is when he has vested interest in something or procedure. Dr. Mendelsohn said: beware of the doctor’s self-interest.
4) Doctors almost always get more reward and recognition for intervening than not intervening. A good analogy to this advice is., ask a barber what to do with your hair. Invariable you will get your hair snipped off for one reason or another. If there is not much chance to snip anything off, then you may end with a different coloured hair.
5) If you are given drugs to take, ask questions and study the side effects of the drugs. For example, if you are given pills for high blood pressure. Take note that there are numerous documented side effects related to the drug – from rashes, muscle cramps to loss of sex drive in both men and women. Dr. Mendelsohn wrote: I wonder just how much of the middle aged population suffers from impotence, not from any psychological cause but simply from their blood pressure medication.
Again, Dr. Mendelsohn asked: what kind of person will take that drug after reading the information? Unfortunately, many of us feel helpless. We are frightened to death. We fear after being told that something has gone extremely wrong with us. In haste, we just don’t think long or far enough. We swallow anything that is given to us. For this reason drug companies sell thousands of tons of pills each month just to pacify those instilled fears – real or perceived. We do not have the slightest inkling of what these chemicals are going to do to us.
6) Dr. Mendelsohn gave an amazing advice, If you are sick … your first defense is to have more information about your problem … You’ve got to learn about your disease and that’s not very hard. You can get the same books the doctor studied from. Read them. It is most likely that after reading you will be more informed than the doctor himself.
In this respect, I urge you to read more than one book. Go into the net and you will be amazed as to how much information you can get – all for free. Let me also ask you to consider this. How long do you get to talk to your doctor when you see him/her? Is it one minute, five minutes or half an hour? I got only a minute for my skin problem and I was shown the door after that. He did not answer any of my questions. Do you think, within that time span the doctor knows what is going on with you? Indeed, the best defense is not to abdicate the responsibility of your health to someone else. Your well being is your responsibility. The bottom line is, if you read and when you get to see your doctor, you can ask sensible questions.
7) Dr. Mendelsohn said, Ask the doctor questions. In some cases, he’ll answer the questions. That’s the rare exception. It seems that doctors are extremely busy people and if you ask too many questions, he may just throw you out of his office. Patients told me these were what they got if they asked too much: Why do you want to know so much? I am doctor are you a doctor? But read what this good doctor wrote, Ask the questions anyway. From his attitude and his response you can judge him as a human being and get an idea of his expertise.
8) This is indeed a hard advice to swallow when Dr. Mendelsohn wrote, Doctors in general should be treated with about the same degree of trust as used car salesman. Whatever your doctor says or recommends, you have to first consider how it will benefit him. Make no mistake these words come from an experienced and senior doctor – chairman of the Medical Licensure Committee of the state of Illinois. The privilege was his to say. In his book he even said that if you don’t like the drug prescribed but you still need to be goody-goody with your doctor, then dump the drugs in the waste chute on the way home!
9) If you have a decision to make, this is one advice that Dr. Mendelsohn gave which again amazed and shocked me to the core. He said, You should seek out and talk to people you regard as having wisdom. Doctors tell you – don’t listen to the untrained, the quacks or pseudo-scientists. But Dr. Mendelsohn wrote, They are wrong – they are protecting their sacred authority. You may find that you can do without the doctor!
There are a few more shocking advices that he gave. Being a director of a Chicago hospital, Dr. Mendelsohn wrote,
A hospital is like a war. You should try your best to stay out of it, and if you get into it you should … get out as soon as you can…. For the hospital is … one of the most dangerous places on earth.
Overall, your chances of getting an infection in the hospital are about one in twenty … Half of the infections in hospitals are caused by contaminated medical devices … sheets, pillow cases, linens … Just because it’s white doesn’t mean it’s clean … the linens may be washed but the mattresses and pillows are not.
Everything gets mixed up in hospitals – including patients. Mix-ups occur … all the times. Surgeons operate on the wrong leg. Medicines are given to the wrong patients…wrong food is served to people … even babies are mixed up.
I believe that my generation of doctors will be remembered for two things – the miracles that turned to mayhem, (that is the abuse of penicillin and cortisone); and for the millions of mutilations which are ceremoniously carried out every year in the operating rooms.
Don’t just read one or two books and pronounce yourself saved. Read 100 books! Read every book you can find on the subject of health, especially those that expose the dangerous inadequacies of Modern Medicine. Get use to the idea right away that NO SINGLE system can or should claim to have an exclusive fix on the dynamics of health.