Book Report

Book Report: Undoctored

Undoctored: Why Health Care Has Failed You and How You Can Become Smarter Than Your Doctor by William Davis

Dr. Davis’ first book, Wheat Belly, is what got me started in nutrition as a key part of health. Since reading that book, I have been continually on the path to learn more. In this book, he goes into strategies in navigating the current health system in a more powerful position; one that is focused on your desire to be optimal.

The first note I saved in this book was the following:

Information doubled every 50 years in 1950, every 7 years in 1980, and every 3.5 years in 2010. If current trends continue, it will double every 73 days by 2020.

This made me pause for a minute. That is slightly over a year away. Info doubling ever 73 days? What this reinforces is that having medical professionals document a few hours of continuing education (CE) periodically really won’t help them stay current on all the new information coming out. We come out of school and everything has evolved, and unless you commit to spending significant time immersed in these areas much will be missed. Further, with “standard of care”, they really take many of the options and art of practice out of the equation. If you have this take this, type of approach. We are taught these standards in school, for example cholesterol treatment:

The 2001 guidelines, ATP-III, reflected the opinions of nine expert medical panel members. The advice dispensed in ATP-III dramatically increased the number of people prescribed statin drugs by intensifying the cholesterol values set as goals for treatment, and it set the pace for prescription of these drugs for over a decade. But look into the background of the members of this expert panel and you see that of the nine, eight had deep and longstanding financial ties to Pfizer, Merck, Bristol-Myers Squibb, and AstraZeneca—the makers of statin cholesterol drugs. This bit of handwork was responsible for boosting revenues for this one class of drugs to over $20 billion per year.

Then you have organizations telling us what to recommend:

The AHA got into the business of certifying food in 1988, a program that became the Heart-Check program in 1995. Some of the products certified over the years include Berry Berry Kix, Count Chocula, Cocoa Frosted Flakes, Fruity Marshmallow Krispies, Honey Nut Cheerios, and low-fat Pop-Tarts, all declared “heart healthy” with tens of millions of dollars in certification fees paid for by companies including Cargill, Post, Kellogg’s, and Coca-Cola.

Dr. Davis introduces functional medicine as an option to bring in a different approach, one outside of the standard. This integrates more approaches and tends to look and what might be precipitating diseases, rather than just how to manage them.

Functional medicine. Practitioners of functional medicine use biochemistry, physiology, and nutrition to understand health issues, and they are more likely to use nutritional or natural solutions to health. They are also more likely to draw from “integrative” or “alternative” strategies and not jump immediately to prescription drugs or procedures. Practitioners can be found from a number of backgrounds and areas of expertise

He also goes through many supplement options as well as ways to obtain lab tests that your doc may not order or insurance may not cover. My approach is that true integrative approaches are beneficial and can be carried out in a smooth way with excellent communication. I enjoy working with various providers on behalf of patients to work toward optimizing their health. Please reach out if this is of interest to you!

This Book Report collection is meant to provide some of the best take-home points from the health and science genre I read. I will continue to go thru my notes of the 160+ and counting (as of January 2019) Kindle books I have on file. To view ALL the notes I saved on this one AND many others without a Book Report post yet, THAT IS ALSO SEARCHABLE, please click here.

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