"Good Medicine: A Return to Common Sense" -- Interesting Book
Nov 19, 2012
Published in 2009 by way of Outskirts Press, "Good Medicine: A Return to Common Sense" reflects the author's working blending together traditional and holistic care to deal with patient illness. The several page introduction is best summed up with the bold face quote on page XI: "This book is all about you, your body, its needs, your well-being, and how to achieve it and your ultimate joy in living, which, surprisingly, does not depend on the body or its stale of health."
The book opens with a look at options in "Chapter 1: Conventional Medicine and Holistic Medicine-Know Your Choices." After briefly recounting her experience in medical school, her medical practice of ear, nose, and throat surgery, and why she believes there is a place for holistic medicine based on her personal experiences; Dr. Carol Roberts explains options in simple to understand jargon free language. After comparing and contrasting the purpose and uses of traditional and holistic medicine it is on to the various aspects of the body as seen holistically.
Everything starts with the digestive system so that comes next in "Chapter 2: The Foundation of Good Health- The Digestive System. Starting on page 11, there is an explanation of how the digestive tract is supposed to work, how probiotics work, how ulcers can be treated with licorice root and mastic gum, dealing with food allergies, among other topics. Along with the information presented here, the chapter closes with some action points and a list of recommended reading. That same closing of the chapter format is followed throughout the book.
Now that you know how the digestive tract and everything related to it is supposed to work it is time to talk about the food that goes into your body with "Chapter 3: What Should I Eat, Doctor." Starts on page 25 with the ideas that one should eat whole foods, eat fresh foods, drink plenty of water, avoid the sugary sodas, eat the right amount of protein and fats, and other detailed information. Unlike your doctor who may not take the time to tell you why, Doctor Carol Roberts goes into some detail on each recommendation here while explaining why each one is important.
The question of whether vitamin supplements work is one that is frequently covered in media news stories with inconclusive results. The topic is addressed here starting on page 33 of "Chapter 4: What Vitamins Should I Take, Doctor?" After pointing out that supplements are not realistic way to avoid taking drugs, the author goes into detail about various vitamins, how they are supposed to work, and the natural source for them. Also included here is some information about minerals as well as basic recommendations for everyone.
One of the recommendations is to take two 1,000mg capsules of fish oil daily as, among other things, it helps with chronic pain. My cardiologist recently put me on one 1,000mg capsule of fish oil daily because of my cholesterol numbers. I have noticed no change in my severe pain levels based on taking one for a month plus now. Whether two a day would make a difference I don't know, but it is something to seriously consider. Something I may try even though taking one seems to make me burp a bit about an hour to two hours after taking it with dinner.
"Chapter 5: The Anatomy of the Energy Body" follows with a discussion about how important patient feelings are and how they are ignored by traditional medicine. There is a mind/body connection and the energy of the body flows through various vortexes called "chakras." This chapter covers how the chakras are supposed to work in your life from birth to death.
Next up in details is the heart in "Chapter 6: The Healthy Heart" that begins on page 55. After explaining the heart and various aspects of how it is supposed to work, the focus shifts to treating heart disease conventionally and holistically. Along with dietary suggestions, the obvious recommendation to avoid toxins such as smoking, references to food allergies, there is an explanation of chelation therapy and how it improves circulation body wide.
The focus moves upwards to the head in "Chapter 7: Brain Health- Now and Forever." What your brain needs supplement wise, sleep wise, and other useful information is here. The ten page chapter goes into more detail than the often repeated recommendation to do games and puzzles.
"Chapter 8: Sex Hormones in Women-The Good and the Not-so-good" begins on page 70 with an explanation of hormone therapy and menopause. Some suggestions are made along with a discussion of how emotions and hormones work together and the need for regular breast exams.
A theme throughout the book is that the patient is a product of his or her environment. In "Chapter 9: Effects of Environmental Toxins on the Body" Dr. Carol Roberts explores what toxins can do to your body. Heavy metals, food additives, and more toxins are covered here as is detailed explanations of the damage caused is covered here.
"Chapter 10: Ridding the Body of Toxins" explains how you do exactly that. "Clean up what's coming in, support the body's detoxifications systems, eliminate the junk." (page 101). Along with probiotics, sweating through exercise, colonics, other suggestions are made to accomplish the quoted goal. Part of that cleanup is to practice positive thinking in the form of meditation and having the courage to changing your life.
Starting on page 115, "Chapter 11: Sex-Keeping It Up Longer" goes far beyond the latest erectile dysfunction ad. Beyond the biological need for sex, the act is one of the body needs for good health. The benefits of "Tantric Sex" are discussed here along with other information on the topic.
Acupuncture, chiropractic treatment, flower essences, and more alternatives are covered in "Chapter 12: Other Forms of Treatment." Starting on page 121, various forms, their uses and abilities, and what they are believed to do are covered here. The ones here are ones that the author has some experience with and feels comfortable recommending.
The person and their relationship to society and society's relationship to the planet is the focus of the brief final "Chapter 13: The Big, Bigger, Biggest Picture." Everything is interconnected and society has to fundamentally change to protect Gaia (Mother Earth). It has to be recognized that the planet is alive, women must be respected as must the plants and animals, and that, among other items, violence is unacceptable and archaic. The new watch words must be "Respect for life, care for one another, and create the new world together." (page 136)
An afterward with a short list of online resources to find a holistic doctor closes this 164 page book.
"Good Medicine: A Return to Common Sense" is an interesting book that makes the point that patients need to be fully informed about their medical situations in order to make informed decisions. While medications many be needed, often the drug is just treating a symptom and not getting to the root cause of the issues. For real improvement, one has to get beyond treating the symptoms and actually treating the real cause of the problem.
Material supplied back in March 2010 for my very long overdue objective review.