When a health issue comes up, many of us head to the doctor first. We want to find out what’s going on. Aside from diagnostics, we’re often handed a script for some form of medication. Whether or not to take this medication, how to wean off of a medication that you’ve been on for some time, and how to avoid taking them in the first place is the topic of this week’s article.
As I’m sure you know, I am not a physician and instead offer my opinion from the perspective of an expert in natural medicine and detoxification.
Here is what we know: medications are toxic and extremely harmful to the equilibrium of the body and the planet. Minor and major side-effects or allergic reactions to medications are not uncommon, and pharmaceutically-induced death is sharply on the rise. Indeed, one of the best things you can do for your health as you age is stay off of medication as much as possible.
We also know that a clean, healthy body will be able to beautifully regulate all systems and functions of the body, and that whatever the reason you have been prescribed a medication, there is often a natural treatment strategy that can correct it. Typically these come down to the basics of changing the diet, engaging in gentle daily cleansing routines, and helping the body self-correct through the use of non-toxic treatments such as acupuncture and/or herbal medicine. The more serious your symptoms or disease, the greater the commitment must be on your part to change the internal conditions that set the stage for your disease to develop.
There are circumstances and illnesses where medication may play a necessary role. My approach to pharmaceuticals is that they be considered with the highest intelligence and discretion. What follows is some important advice around how to be an empowered and informed patient in relation to taking medication.
1. Do not leave you doctor’s office without getting all of your questions answered. Take careful notes, and do not allow yourself to be bulldozed or ignored. Make sure you fully understand what he or she is recommending and why.
2. Do your research. You should know the generic name of the prescription, all possible side effects and complications, what it has been prescribed for in the past (many medications are used to treat multiple issues) and your exact dosage. You should know exactly what you are getting into and take responsibility for being fully informed.
3. Consider where you are in the transition towards becoming independently healthy. How long have you been juicing, eating a clean diet, and engaged in gentle practices of detoxification? This will tell you your body’s ability to regulate itself. A highly alkaline system can fight infection better than an acidic system, and a long-time vegetable-rich and juice-filled lifestyle allows you to handle deeply emotional situations with more strength and intuition.
4. Gauge you level of discomfort. If you can easily bear your symptoms while you give your system a chance to do its work, you may not decide to interfere. If you are in constant pain that makes life unbearable you may decide to try medication.
5. Exhaust all other options. Have you tried acupuncture, emotional therapy, physical therapy, rolfing, and guided meditation? Medication should be a last resort.
6. Make sure you understand the length of time you are dealing with. Is this a long-term chronic pain, or something quick and commonly treated? The longer the medication is taken, the more it accumulates in the system.
7. Do not make any snap decisions. I often have clients meet with me for the first time and decide to go right off their anti-depressants. It is important to wean slowly and gradually off of any medication, and some (for mood and sleep disorders for example) may require months of careful reduction. It is often wise to seek the guidance of a wise alternative practitioner for help with side-effect, detoxification, and regulation of the body’s functions during this process.
8. Boosting your alkalinity with additional green juice and taking high-quality probiotics will help your body to stay strong during a cycle of medication. Avoiding all starches and sweeteners other than stevia or honey until all medication has left the system is also essential, so that additional yeast and fungal growth does not take place during the process.
Please remember, there are no gold stars for pain and suffering, and no guilt for any choices that are well researched, and made with the highest good in mind!