“If we had a health epidemic, the stock market would tremble. There is no money in health.”
(DR ANDREW SAUL, author of “DOCTOR YOURSELF”, in “FOOD MATTERS”)
It’s been a few years coming, but at the end of April 2014, a lot of the natural remedies you may have come to depend on will be missing from the shelves of health stores. And if you want to know who you have to thank for this bureaucratic travesty, look in the direction of Brussels.
It’s often said that the UK continually concedes to the EU’s political whims, no matter how ludicrous. In this case, it’s the UK’s medicine regulator, the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), doing the bowing and scraping.
It’s a complex, lengthy topic, but in short, you might soon pop to your chemist to buy some milk thistle to pep up your liver, or some astralagus to wage war against your cold sores, only to be told that their usual supplier didn’t apply for a licence. Or, the prices will have sky-rocketed (the fewer out there selling something, the more they can charge, obv).
Put simply, this is because the EU now has the authority to classify just about anything it feels like as a medicine. So, many products currently described as “herbal supplements” will be re-labelled accordingly. And the reason this matters is because anything re-classified as a medicine then requires a pricey licence which, you’ve guessed it, blows the budgets of a lot of the companies who sell the natural stuff. This is of particular concern in relation to Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine, from which very few medicines have been re-licensed thus far.
Without a licence, not only can no claims be made as to the recommended dosages which actually work, but the producers aren’t even allowed to tell you what the product in question is for, even if there have been no reported side effects! Hence, they cannot sell them, unless they find a loophole.
Political bodies such as the EU and our own Government frequently hide behind the excuse of “saving us from ourselves”, but as with most big stuff, the motivation is money first, fear second. If natural products become more mainstream and people continue to see proof that they work just as well – if not better – than over-the-counter chemicals, the big pharmaceuticals could find themselves in financial meltdown, not to mention the Government, which makes a phenomenal amount in taxes from these chemical giants.
FACT: natural remedies are considerably cheaper than most prescription meds, so tax revenue takes a nose-dive.
At best, we’re told these products don’t work. At worst, they’re simply described as dangerous.
Which one is it, please? The answer, I believe, is neither.
Where does this information come from, you ask? The same place where the Government gets most of its information on medicine from which it then uses to make policies and laws: the drugs companies. Interesting.
I know that the following stats aren’t bang up to date, but they paint a realistic picture of where western Governments’ priorities lie when it comes to health.
One of the DVDs which I often mention in my ramblings is “Food Matters”, released in 2008. http://www.metacafe.com/watch/6440635/food_matters/
In it, they talk about how we are continually told by newscasters not to take too many vitamins (I refer you to my recent blog on Niacin, (B3)/depression, and the suicidally-depressed lady). In the USA, there have been only 10 deaths ALLEGEDLY caused by the mis-use/overdose of vitamins in the last 23 years.
In contrast, more than 106,000 die in the USA from prescribed drug reactions per year. And these figures apply only to APPROVED medicines which were properly prescribed and properly taken.
We’re conditioned from an early age only to trust the word of doctors and to doubt our own common sense. Many of the laws about to be over-turned date back to Tudor times, a time when everyone who was anyone had their own herbalist (how do you think Henry VIII coped with his gout?) They didn’t nip to the chemist to stock up on Lemsips at the first sign of a sniffle (ok, they couldn’t, but they more than got by without it!).
I’m in no way disrespecting the position of those in our medical profession. When we need emergency, life-saving treatment, they’re spot on. But in medical school, medics are not taught about natural and herbal medicine. Instead, they leave qualified only to treat illness using one of three methods: to poison, to burn or to cut out, thus looking to the pharmaceutical companies or our operating theatres to solve every ill.
More to the point, conventional medicines only treat the symptoms you have. There is abundant evidence to suggest that many natural and herbal remedies tackle the actual root cause of a health problem, meaning you will only need that remedy for a limited time, rather than a life sentence of prescriptions, with side effects often included into the bargain.
In the last 75 years of medical research in the USA, there are thousands of studies which show that high doses of nutrients cure disease, and equally, that natural remedies actually work. However, these cannot be accessed because the US’s National Library of Medicine refuses to index them.
For example, the Journal of Ortho-Molecular Medicine has not been indexed for 40 years, even though this is meant to be the largest medical library on earth. So no one gets to find out what they have to say.
I don’t purport to know much at all about conventional medicine – I don’t. But I do feel that we have a right to choose. And that right to choose shouldn’t be taken away and dressed up as false concern for people’s safety, when all it is really about is big, fat profits for a few.
A lot of the information in this post is courtesy of an article, written by Rob Verkerk, executive and scientific director of the Alliance for Natural Health International.
I found this in January’s edition of the magazine, “What Doctors Don’t Tell You” (www.wddty.com), a recent discovery of mine. It’s ace, and does exactly as the name suggests.
But guess what – the powers that be are also trying to ban this magazine from sale in the shops! If they succeed, this informative publication will only be available on subscription. (I reiterate my earlier comments about profit and fear!)
For more information on the herbs campaign, take a look at the following and show your support:
http://www.anh-europe.org/node/3113 – the first phase of the campaign is done, but updates will follow