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Lunch » Tags » Books » Reviews » What Your Doctor Hasn't Told You and the Health Store Clerk Doesn't Know: The Truth About Alternative Treatments and What Works » User review

"Mind-body therapies... are a smart supplement to conventional treatment."

  • Jun 1, 2006
  • by
Many people are afflicted with chronic health problems, neck and back pain, sleeplessness, depression, arthritis, etc., and when conventional medicine cannot help, they are left to sort through a variety of alternative treatments, from acupuncture to chiropractic care, holistic and health store remedies. In this helpful guide, Edward L Schneider, MD, explains the basics of alternative treatments and what works for different conditions, covering a spectrum of specific issues: joint pain, chronic back pain, sleep disorders, PMS, improving prostate health and a proactive approach to preventing heart disease and cancer prevention.

Patients are often caught between physicians who flatly reject alternatives and health food clerks who aren't sufficiently trained to recommend treatments, especially when the patent is already on a prescription drug regimen. Hence a booming market of little understood applications for frustrated patients who have gotten scant relief from conventional medicine are desperate for help. The book is written from a scientific, unbiased viewpoint, the author neither dismissive of alternative therapies nor pandering to pharmaceutical companies' interests; Dr. Schneider simple hopes inform the public. Alternative medicine is here to stay and Dr. Schneider requests that all his patients bring in all their alternative medications so that here can apprise them of the efficacy of such products and treatments, particularly for long term use.

Beginning with basic principles for understanding "complementary or integrative medicine", there are tips for purchasing supplements, a guide to understanding scientific studies and treatment options, the benefits and challenges of each. After that, the chapters address specific health problems, conventional treatments, recommendations for lifestyle changes and means of prevention. The "Discriminating Consumer's Guide" breaks down treatments into four categories: Highly Recommended, Recommended, Acceptable and Do Not Use. In addition, each chapter features "The Complete Prescription", a recommendation of the best combination of conventional and alternative treatments for each specific problem, always keeping the physician informed.

In a user-friendly format, with information specific to each health issue, the prose is uncluttered and straightforward. There are no easy answers, but armed with information, the public can address their problems with a clearer perspective in what has become a cluttered market. Dr. Schneider also notes the patent's attitude and how a positive approach can affect the response to a particular therapy. This is an invaluable guide for anyone with chronic health problems or a desire to prevent illness, filled with helpful material, details on current therapies and a reasonable approach to combining conventional and alternative medicine. Luan Gaines/ 2006.

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review by . June 26, 2006
The gold standard for Alternative Medicine citations is the  Journal of the Lancet. Although this work lists some important  complementary medicinal protocols I recognize, it's not clear  whether or not conclusions reached on other treatments are valid.  The author mentions the benefits of calcium citrate absorption in  the intestines. Magnesium is cited as a good tonic generally known to benefit musculoskeletal conditions. Ginger and tumeric are …
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Luan Gaines ()
Ranked #108
An artist/writer, I have traveled the world, walked on the moon and learned the complicated language of humanity, the enormity of the universe... all through the written word. My first passport was a … more
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Aging boomers eager for answers to health-care questions couldn't ask for a better guide to the best treatments than Schneider, a practicing clinician and dean emeritus of USC's Andrus Gerontology Center. Evaluating the latest medical research on topics ranging from arthritis, depression, menopause and male libido to heart disease, brain function and cancer, Schneider (The Longevity Quotient) outlines his recommendations for a combination of conventional and alternative treatments. Though recent studies have shown that some of the supplements that he and others advocate (saw palmetto for prostate problems and glucosamine and chondroitin for joint pain) can be ineffective, the use of these are, in general, just a small part of Schneider's comprehensive wellness program. All chapters are easy to navigate and well organized, and feature not only useful "to dos" but a number of "how tos" (relaxation response for sleeplessness, for example). When dealing with insomnia, he suggests an exercise program and good "sleep hygiene" (firm mattress, no caffeine) and discusses various nonaddictive prescription drugs (including dosage and side effects). Overall, Schneider's balanced view of integrative therapies and his great fund of practical and medical advice are both reassuring and invigorating.(June)
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ISBN-10: 1583332529
ISBN-13: 978-1583332528
Author: Edward Schneider
Publisher: Avery Trade

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