The WHO estimates that atherosclerosis (heart attacks and strokes) and diabetes (95% of the Type 2 variety) kill about 20 million people every year, more than are killed by war, famine, AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria combined, and more than might conceivably be killed in a single pandemic of bird flu. Bill Gates gives billions to trying to eliminate infectious disease but never mentions the really big killer, cardiovascular diseease (CVD) in the form of atherosclerosis and hypertension (high blood pressure).
Half of cardiovascular disease deaths occur in people under 70 years old and at least 90% are preventable with simple lifestyle changes. So, if they are preventable, why aren’t they being prevented, like small pox, the plague and polio?
Diseases of lifestyle (coronary heart disease, strokes, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, obesity) are fundamentally different from communicable diseases. They are determined by each individual’s choice in nutrition, exercise and tobacco use. When people are deluded into the belief that they can avoid changing cherished habits by partaking of expensive drugs and procedures, these diseases become rampant.
The ancient Greeks were very perceptive. They gave their god of medicine, Asclepius, two daughters, Panaceia, the goddess of the expensive quick fix, the treatment of symptoms, not the disease and Hygeia, the goddess of cost-free prevention and treatment of disease by healthy lifestyle. We have developed this site to prove to you that lifestyle change, Hygeia, is the only way to prevent and treat these diseases.
Drugs and procedures, Panaceia, only treat symptoms and will not decrease total mortality. Panaceia is founded upon a number of medical myths promoted by those selling a particular panaceia. Generally these myths play upon fear of death and have some variant of “unless you do this, you will die.” There is increasing evidence that Panaceia will actually kill more people than it could possibly save. In particular, the current obsession with “cholesterol”, beginning in the early 1980s with the monstrous mistake in the planning of the Lipid Research Clinics Coronary Primary Prevention Trial, has led doctors to largely ignore the larger environmental determinants of morbidity and mortality and inadvertently encourage the pandemic of obesity and diabetes. The recent ASTEROID trial is a classic example.
See our photo essay on Food Addiction.
If you have any comments on the ideas presented here please EMAIL us.
Sandra Cohen-Rose, P.Dt., Dietitian-Nutritionist
Colin Rose MD PhD, Cardiologist, Associate Professor of Medicine, McGill University
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