Before You Medicate

Do you really “have” what your diagnosis says you have?

Conventional medicine has taught us to chase a diagnosis. Before I can get well, don’t I really need someone to tell me “what do I have?”

The corollary to that is, “Now that I know what I have, what do I take?” I mean…isn’t that the way to get better? Surely if I am sick, the sickness has a name. And if it can be named, then there must be an antidote, a cure, a thing that makes it go away.

Right?

The scene has played out innumerable times: in our own lives, in the movies, in the lives of everyone we know: go to the doctor, find that all-important diagnosis, get a prescription or surgery to fix it and be on our way – follow up in a few weeks, or months.

But does naming it cure it? Is this the right starting place?

If it was, it would work.

But for chronic disease, our current system is a big FAIL.

Almost six in ten Americans now live with at least one chronic disease. Nearly 40 million people are diagnosed with five or more chronic diseases!

Even more tragic…our kids are sick: more than 40% of American children suffer from at least one chronic disease now; many suffer from multiple. They are being medicated, too.

Five chronic diseases cause 60 – 70% of yearly deaths and cost 75% of the healthcare dollars being spent in this country. That doesn’t even count lost work productivity or sheer misery.

We name it, we spend trillions of dollars on it, we highly educate and train our medical doctors to become experts in disease, yet all these statistics increase every year.

We are sicker than ever. Our disease experts are not getting us well.

Maybe because what we really need aren’t more experts in disease; it’s experts in health.

I think asking WHAT won’t get us the complete answer. I think asking WHY and HOW is even more necessary.

As a Certified Functional Medicine Practitioner (CFMP), that is what I am trained to ask. I’m not a medical doctor. I don’t treat disease and I don’t make diagnoses. I am not an expert in disease.

I am an expert in health.

I ask HOW did this person deviate from health? WHY are this person’s bodily systems out of balance, allowing disease to grow? What is beneath the symptoms: how and why did he or she get there?

I recognize the wisdom of asking those questions, and I don’t guess: I test for all of these.

That is the correct starting point, in my opinion.

What is the #1 Root Cause?

Each of us is biochemically unique. We are a unique combination of genetics, life experiences, history, and habits. My questions around a person’s suffering takes all of that into account. I need to shine light onto all of the Six Root Causes of Chronic Disease:

  • Nutritional deficiencies
  • Microbial imbalances (bacterial, viral, parasitic, yeast, mold)
  • Toxicity (environmental, heavy metals)
  • Unresolved trauma
  • Genetic variability
  • Allergies and sensitivities

#1 – nutritional deficiencies – can play a huge role in chronic illness, because…

Nutritional deficiencies are The Great Impostors

Shall we take off their masks?

Way too often, I see so-called chronic diseases that can actually be the outward signs of simple deficiencies of common nutrients.

Why not just take a drug?

  1. For chronic disease, they don’t work.
  2. They can cause serious potential side effects. They can even cause nutritional deficiencies of their own. Mixed with each other, they can have grave and unpredictable consequences.

Drugs do NOT address the underlying cause of chronic diseases. They just manage the symptoms.

Sometimes pharmaceutical drugs are necessary, and as much as anyone else, I am very grateful for them so that they can be used in those rare instances. But for chronic diseases, they fail. There is a better way.

First, identify any nutritional deficiencies – things that should be present but aren’t – and replenish those natural nutrients with wholesome, high-quality, non-GMO, non-grain supplements?

Honor the body’s innate wisdom to create health: it wants to function. Start by recognizing that a body that has what it needs, and is rid of what it does not want will be well.

No illness is caused by a deficiency of Fosamax, Crestor, Metformin, Xanax, Methotrexate, Lipitor, or Almotriptan…

But illness can be caused by a deficiency of vital micronutrients. Give your body what it needs! Before taking a pharmaceutical, or even an over-the-counter (OTC) drug, find out if you’re lacking something you need.

Potential underlying nutritional deficiencies of these common chronic disease diagnoses

These diagnoses are commonly treated with pharmaceutical medications, but could simply be, entirely or in part, the result of these nutritional deficiencies.

**Please keep in mind that you are not a simple checklist – not even this one.

Please do not use this list as a shopping guide for self-treatment.**

Osteoporosis/Osteopenia

  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin K
  • Calcium
  • Magnesium
  • Copper
  • Boron
  • Zinc
  • Manganese
  • Potassium

Arthritis

  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin K
  • EPA/DHA
  • Folic Acid
  • Glucosamine
  • Chondroitin Sulfur
  • Vitamin C
  • Zinc
  • Calcium
  • Magnesium
  • Potassium

Type 2 Diabetes

  • Chromium
  • Molybdenum
  • Lipoic Acid
  • All the B vitamins
  • Vitamin D
  • Protein (a macro-, not micro-, nutrient)

Heart Disease

  1. EPA/DHA (essential fats)
  2. CoQ10
  3. Glutathione
  4. Carnitine
  5. Magnesium
  6. Niacin
  7. All the antioxidants: Vitamins C, A, D, and zinc

Fibromyalgia

  • Vitamin D
  • Magnesium (Mg)
  • CoQ10
  • Glutathione
  • Selenium
  • Zinc

Insomnia

  • Magnesium
  • B5
  • B6
  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin K
  • Tryptophan
  • Selenium
  • Vitamin C
  • Potassium
  • Calcium
  • EPA/DHA
  • Zinc
  • Taurine
  • N-acetyl Cysteine (NAC)

Anxiety

  • B12
  • B6
  • Magnesium
  • Vitamin C

Depression

  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin C
  • B12
  • B6
  • Iron

Hypertension

  • Magnesium
  • EPA/DHA

Migraines

  • Magnesium
  • B6
  • B2
  • B12
  • Folic acid
  • EPA/DHA

Brain Fog/Dementia

  • Magnesium
  • B12
  • Niacin
  • B2
  • B1

Acid Reflux/Heartburn

  • B12
  • CoQ10
  • Magnesium

Anemia

  • B12
  • B6
  • Folic acid
  • Copper
  • Iron

Peripheral Neuropathy

  • B12
  • B6
  • EPA/DHA

Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS)

  • Iron
  • Magnesium
  • All the B vitamins

Hypothyroidism

  • Iron
  • Vitamin D
  • Selenium
  • Iodine

Acne

  • Zinc
  • Vitamin C

ADD/ADHD

  • Magnesium
  • All the B vitamins
  • EPA/DHA

Chronic Fatigue

  • Biotin
  • B12
  • Choline
  • Inositol

Night Blindness

  • Vitamin A
  • Beta-carotene

Dandruff & Seborrheic Dermatitis

  • Zinc
  • Niacin (B3)
  • Riboflavin (B2)
  • Pyridoxine (B6)
  • EPA/DHA

Keratosis Folicularis (white or red skin bumps)

  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin B6
  • EPA/DHA

Constipation

  • Magnesium

Pre-Medication Checklist

Be an active consumer before taking any medication (even OTC). Find out what is going into your body, why, and what you can expect as far as efficacy, potential side effects, and probability of benefits.  The following checklist comes to us courtesy of Jack Wolfson, DO. I highly recommend his book, The Paleo Cardiologist, especially Chapter 6: “The Failed Promise of Big Pharma.”

Learn and be proactive. Filter the expertise and advice of any medical professional (including mine) through your own logic. Do not park your brain or your confidence at the door on the way into your appointment.

First Ask:

  • What are we doing to address the cause of my condition?
  • Are there any natural alternatives to the drug you are recommending?
  • What are the studies showing the drug is effective?
  • What is the number needed to treat (NNT)?
  • What are the side effects?
  • How will you monitor the side effects?

But why supplement – can’t we get all the nutrients we need from our food?

Nope.

You cannot. I cannot. That is the simple truth.

If our water and air were pure; if our lifestyles were devoid of chronic stress, electromagnetic overload and plastics; if we never drank alcohol; if we used only pure products on our skin, in our homes and where we work; if we ate at least 50 diverse forms of pesticide-free organic plant life grown in microbially-rich soil every month and ate ten servings of such vegetables and fruits every day, and if we only ate meat from animals raised on such a diet…we might have a chance.

But we do not live like this…although we should.

Nor do we eat like this…although we should. Even the most attentive of us need to ask if we are deficient in micronutrients.

And if we have chronic disease, it is even more important to determine any deficiencies and replenish them.

Finding out if you are deficient in any micronutrient is beginning at the right starting point to heal.

One last note

We become sick for a variety of reasons, but there are always underlying causes. Illness doesn’t appear out of nowhere, and our body doesn’t create it “just because.”

Find someone who knows how to employ to ask why and how you got sick, and who you trust to help you rebalance your body for health.

Whether that is me, or another Functionally trained professional, please make sure that they “start at the very beginning, the very best place to start.”

That is right and logical. You deserve that.

Comment below – do you think you’re deficient in any micronutrients? Share this with someone who needs to read it.

 

Articles cited:

https://www.cdc.gov/chronicdisease/index.htm#:~:text=Six%20in%20ten%20Americans%20live,driver%20of%20health%20care%20costs.

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21570014/

https://www.cdc.gov/healthyschools/chronicconditions.htm

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4112689/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2 thoughts on “Before You Medicate”

  1. Patricia G Hartman

    Thank you for this post, Dr. Binley! I just went through all my supplements to see generally what I was missing and found only one – iron. That will be added ASAP. Your list was very helpful in understanding the diagnosis/deficiency basics.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Related Posts

My Adventure Doing #75Hard

My #75Hard Ever hit a season of life when you go looking for something big? When you find yourself ready to do something that requires

3 Hacks for Longevity

3 Hacks for Longevity

3 Hacks for Longevity You might be surprised to hear of three top factors correlated with longevity – especially #3! Focus on these and your

Whats Wrong with mouthwash

What’s Wrong With Mouthwash???

Cholorhexidine: it’s a KILLER Cholorhexidine is a common ingredient in most over the counter and prescription mouthwashes – as well as fluoride mouthwashes for cavity

Scroll to Top