How did it sound when a man, who had stopped taking all his meds 18 months after suffering a heart attack, wanted to participate in an Ironman event? Pretty alarming, was Dr. Aseem Malhotra‘s first thought. But after hearing the full story, he relaxed, he shares in this recent article published in The Guardian.
I realised he had made an informed decision to stop the medication after suffering side effects, and instead had opted for a diet and lifestyle approach to manage his heart disease. His case is a great example of how evidence-based medicine should be practised.
Unfortunately, our health-care system is focused on using medications to improve health outcomes, even when lifestyle interventions can be far more powerful. Sometimes, medications only lead to tiny benefits, and side effects outweigh the benefits. This is a huge issue in an overmedicated population, and it needs to be addressed.
Giving patients the very best chance of improving their health will require a national public health campaign to reduce the amount of medications the population takes, improving lifestyle and adhering to the true principles of evidence-based medicine that make shared decision making the priority in clinical practice.
At Diet Doctor we agree with Dr. Aseem Malhotra. We want to empower more people to get well through lifestyle changes whenever possible, to truly reverse chronic disease, rather than taking drugs for the rest of their lives to mask the symptoms.
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