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Moistur-Eyes, Herbs vs. Pharmaceuticals

December 1998 - Print | Index

One of my favorite new products is Moistur-Eyes by Carlson Labs. This formula is fairly basic and mainly contains EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid), DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), and GLA (gamma linolenic acid). It also has vitamin A, E, D, B-6, C, biotin, and zinc. It is a very clean product and the combination seems to lend itself well to digestion and assimilation.

I often wear contact lenses and have experienced dryness in my eyes. The first thing I did was blink more often; I then increased my water intake. These all helped to improve the condition; however, the icing on the cake occurred when I added Moistur-Eyes. My eyes stopped feeling dry and itchy, but I gained an even better side benefit. I immediately noticed a difference in my brain function. My memory felt improved, but most importantly, I felt a sense that I was thinking more clearly.

Finally, a note about a well-known but sometimes forgotten nutrient: zinc. This is a miraculous trace mineral. It also appears to be easily depleted from the body. It is found most highly concentrated in the eyes, liver, bone, semen, prostate, and hair. Zinc enhances normal taste acuity and many customers have found it to be life saving for anorexic problems. Zinc is especially important for normal development and function of the reproductive organs. It is also extremely important for wound healing and of course cold symptoms. Actually, I find it dramatically increased my tolerance towards cold temperatures. Zinc also helps to chelate out heavy metals from the system. It is important to take zinc in conjunction with other trace minerals, especially copper and even manganese.

Herbs vs. Pharmaceuticals

Herbs are in the news. There is "good" news and there is "bad" news. The "bad" news seems to be couched in attacks on the natural foods industry and the safety and efficacy of their herbal products. So lets look at history to understand what place herbs hold. Why are herbal remedies posing a threat to the profits of modern industrial allopathic medicine? Why are they under attack?

There are thousands of herbs. We have thousands of years of use. The finest minds of each age in the medical and health fields have used herbs. These physicians and healers have provided us with knowledge and clinical information.

Throughout history, until the beginning of the 20th century, doctors used herbs as their medicine. In the U.S. these doctors, at the turn of the century, formed a group called the Eclectics. The Eclectics practiced traditional medicine, the medicine of herbs. In 1898 doctors published in two volumes and 2,172 pages the King's American Dispensatory, providing the most complete information and formulation of herbal medicine available at that time.

However, times change and a battle occurred at the turn of the century. The battle for health controlled by business began. It was the era of high profits, the concentration of wealth, and cartels. Cartels meant the elimination of competition and gaining control of the market place for high profits.

It was with the Industrial Age that industrial allopathic medicine emerged. With the rise of industrial medicine, the American Medical Association became its mentor and advocate. It was an age of reductionist thought, and the age of assembly lines and mass production. Work was reduced to limited repetitive actions. Herbs were reduced to the most active ingredient; extracted and manipulated to form a patentable medicine capable of quick action. Profits were protected from competition.

Herbs became the basis of aspirin, morphine, and digitalis. Allopathic medicine was the needed panacea to get the assembly line worker off the sick roles and back onto the production line as quickly as possible. It was the mode of action endorsed by wealthy advocates such as Carnegie and Rockefeller, and it was a protected economic investment.

As the chemical industry and industrial allopathic medicine took control of providing health care, this country entered into an era of optimistic control of disease, only to be followed by an epidemic of heart disease, cancer, diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure, arthritis, and malnutrition. Environmental poisoning, chemical farming practices, and allopathic medicine were, and are, the major factors causing this development.

The 21st Century is faced with an enormous challenge. This challenge requires the pendulum to swing back towards our earlier holistic integrative roots. The Industrial Age gave us an age of reductionism, control and singular standards. Now the industrial age is old and being challenged. It is being changed by the Information Age, an age that broadens our vision through mass communication, education and computers. It is the age of integration and holistic thinking. It creates an appreciation of the holistic approach to health and medicine. The 21st Century is here. We need to appreciate the many perspectives necessary to solve problems, if we are to have a healthy nation.

The industrial age produced pharmaceutical drugs. Pharmaceutical drugs have become a worldwide business in excess of a trillion dollars annually. Every disease becomes its focus with a singular goal in mind-- to find the magic bullet, market it and make huge profits from it. It is reductionist thought and appears no longer beneficial. The Journal of the American Medical Association published that more than 2,200,000 hospital patients in the US last year experienced serious adverse drug reactions and more than 108,000 deaths occurred due to prescribed drugs. These were drugs given to save lives and create health.

Some quick definitions:

  • Traditional-- the handing down of statements, beliefs, information from generation to generation, especially by word of mouth or by practice.
  • Medicine-- any substance used in treating a disease or illness; medicament; remedy.

It is unfortunate that industrial medicine has taken the term "traditional medicine" as its own.

Obviously, that is an error of definition and should be immediately remedied. I propose the term "industrial medicine" as a more accurate description. The more it is used and thought about, I'm sure the clearer it will be that that is the appropriate name.

Instead the drugs created illness and death. This is a tragedy and a horrible indictment of the pharmaceutical industry. It is an enormous burden to the emotions of the individuals and their families. It is an extreme waste of wealth without benefits. It is also only the tip of the iceberg. There are estimates that over eight million patients who have used drugs stopped because they knew they weren't helping or gave them a bad reaction.

Many of our customers come into our store to read and to gain information. They have had bad experiences with industrial allopathic medicine and are treating themselves. They are also saving money in the process, both for themselves, because competition keeps the prices reasonable, and for society at large. It is estimated that they are saving medical costs in the hundreds of millions of dollars.

The prescribing of many industrial drugs, in lieu of gentler and more holistic remedies when possible, is the equivalent of malpractice. Financial pressure should be exerted on the industrial medical industry by those 2,200,000 hospital patients who experience serious adverse drug reactions and those suffering families that are victims from the 108,000 deaths. The Herb Research Foundation tracks reports of poison centers and have done so for more than fifteen years and the overall record of safety for herbs is exemplary (15 years equals zero deaths and a few dozen validated severe reactions).

The government should not exclusively fund industrial allopathic medicine to the exclusion of traditional holistic medicine. The allopathic medical community in concert with the pharmaceutical industry owns a monopoly on health care in this country. Monopolies are not created by industry cartels; government creates them. The government creates monopolies through preferential funding and restrictive regulations. They are being highly influenced by the moneyed lobbyists of the pharmaceutical cartels and the regulatory arm of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The FDA in turn is staffed by the pharmaceutical industry, and their admitted goal is to restrict the market place in favor of pharmaceutical drugs when competition arises from nutrients and herbs.

It is very illuminating that the Physician's Desk Reference (PDR) has just issued their first edition of herbal medicines. The PDR for herbal medicine demonstrates how the medical attitudes in this country are shifting.

For the 21st Century, the paradigm of preventative holistic medicine needs to regain its prominent place as the preferred medical treatment. Medical education should be broadened and enriched with the many holistic approaches towards health. Classes in nutrition and herbs should be a major requirement in medical schools. The government should support these activities.

Herbs and nutrients have proven themselves time and time again as medicine that is affordable and effective. Herbs and nutrients are being bought and used by many people for all possible forms of health problems. This responsible self-care is saving hundreds of millions of dollars in health care costs.

Industrial allopathic medicine has its application, but it must not be the preferred choice for health care in the 21st century. Allopathic practitioners, that is, the majority of MD's, have little or no training or experience with herbs and nutrition. They are not the ones to be sought out for information about them. The Naturopaths, Master Herbalists, Homeopaths, Certified Nutritionists, and the many other health practitioners should be the source of information and expertise regarding their fields of study.  The time has come for freedom of choice for health care. It is necessary to end the government's preferential treatment of industrial allopathic medicine.

The BEST of health to you!
Michael LeVesque, President

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The products listed in this newsletter are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Consult with your physician before taking any of these products.