Pharmaceutical drugs: Scourge of America

There are good reasons for a blog like this, and the many other fine sources of natural health information.

In fact, your well-being and even the life of you and your loved ones may depend on the information you learn from them. By reading this, you are likely already a member of the choir. Nevertheless, read on….

If the U.S healthcare system was a country, it would have the 6th largest economy on the globe, amounting to $2.5 trillion in 2009. All those dollars should result in the most vibrantly healthy and lively people on earth. Right?

Wrong.

Rates of cancer, heart disease, obesity, fatigue, diabetes and a host of other chronic ills continue to increase. Puerto Ricans have a longer life expectancy than we do,Cubahas a far lower infant mortality rate than theU.S.According to the CIA World Factbook, theU.S.had a higher infant mortality rate than 45 other nations in 2009.

Japan, Sweden, Italy, France, Iceland, Switzerland, Finland, Greece, Austria, Germany, Denmark, Australia and many other countries have healthier and fitter citizens than we do, depending on who’s doing the rating and based on what factors.

We are rated as high as 11th and as low as 37th. We used to be number one, but we’re dropping every year. That’s bad news for a country that possibly spends more on healthcare than the rest of the world combined, while covering the smallest percentage of the population.

So, what’s going on here in the land of the formerly slim, free-spirited and activeU.S.? What are we doing for ourselves? And what are we getting for our healthcare dollars?

Relief? Comfort? Illness? Death?

The answer is all of the above.

Pharmaceutical drugs, once the miracle panacea for all our bodily ills, are now, in their increasing plentitude, recognized as a frightening, often dangerous, epidemic.

Every 14 minutes a person dies from prescription drugs, said Ethan Huff, writing in Natural News. “The tragic reality of the situation is that otherwise normal individuals, many of whom had no prior history of drug abuse or addiction, become hooked on prescription drugs.”

When the effects of one drug begins to lose its potency, many patients begin doubling up or combining drugs to attain the maximum level of euphoric comfort.

Americans are hooked, says EconomicCollapseBlog.com. “Nearly half of Americans use prescription drugs on a regular basis. One-third use two or more, and more than ten percent of all Americans use five or more drugs on a regular basis,” regardless of  the fact that prescription drugs cost about 50 percent more in the U.S. than they do in other Western nations.

According to a recent analysis conducted by the Los Angeles Times, “drug-induced deaths have now become so prevalent that their average yearly total exceeds the number of deaths caused by traffic accidents.”

Prescription drugs now kill 300 percent more people annually than all ‘illegal’ drugs such as heroin and cocaine combined, according to a 2008 report by the Florida Medical Examiners and quoted on the Pharmageddon.com website. The LA Times said, “Legal drug fatalities more than doubled among teens and young adults between 2000 and 2008 (in theU.S.). Death rates more than tripled among people aged 50 to 69. The death toll is highest among people in their 40s.”

According to the Wall Street Journal, 25 percent of all kids and teens in theU.S.take prescription drugs on a regular basis. In 2010 alone, 600,000 kids were hospitalized because of prescription drug adverse effects!

Emergency room visits from Pharma drugs have doubled in the last five years, dwarfing hospitalization as a result of illicit drugs.

Many of our elderly are being poisoned by cocktails of Pharma drugs in hospitals and rest homes, according to The Economic Collapse blog.

According to Huff, as few as one percent of drug induced injuries and deaths are even reported in the FDA adverse event tracking system. Based on 2008 data from the Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP), estimates suggest that as many as half a million Americans die every year from taking pharmaceutical drugs.

“The death toll is equivalent to a hundred 757s crashing and killing everyone on board every year, but this doesn’t make the news,” said Dan Bigg of the Chicago Recovery Alliance. “So many people have died and we just don’t care.”

“The problem is right here under our noses in our medicine cabinets,” Laz Salinas, a sheriff’s commander in Santa Barbara, California, is quoted as saying in the LA Times.

Clear back in October, 2007, in testimony before the House Oversight and Investigations Committee, CDC epidemiologist Leonard Paluzzi said that pharmaceutical drug deaths “are currently more than twice what illicit drugs were during the peak years of crack cocaine mortality in the early 1990s, and four to five times higher than the rates during the year of heroin mortality peak in 1975.”

A government Accountability Office report discovered that about one-third of all foster children in theU.S.are on at least one psychiatric drug. InTexas, foster children were 53 times more likely to be prescribed five or more psychiatric medicines than non-foster children. In Massachussetts they were 19 times more likely. InMichigan15 times, 13 times more inOregon.

According to Jane Carlisle Maxwell, Ph.D, pharmaceutical drugs are so easy to get in New York City that street dealers are making big bucks selling Oxycodone (Oxycontin, Percocet, Percodan, Tylox), Hydrocodone (Vicodin, Lortab, Lorcet), and Methadone. Quoting several government sources, Maxwell said 90 percent of the pharmaceutical narcotic street sales are purchased for getting high, not for pain relief. And NYC is only the tip of the iceberg, said Maxwell. Cities and small towns across the nation are reporting increases of pharmaceutical abuse as high as 50 and 60 percent since 2005.

A recent editorial in the Tenneseean newspaper reported that in 2010 there were more deaths from legal drug overdoses than from vehicle accidents, homicide or suicide. “The facts are so cold, so brutal, that they make the mind reel…Our state is Painkiller Central.”

The tragedy is, the vast majority had no intention of killing themselves, the article said. “They were busy moms, outpatients on painkillers and teens partying on the contents of their parents’ medicine cabinet…but consider the powerful drugs they took: hydrocodone or oxycodone—often in combination with antidepressants”.

According to the website Oxywatchdog.com, oxycodone and hydrocodone are the two most abused pharmaceutical drugs. InNew York City, prescriptions written for oxycodone increased by 82 percent between 2007 and 2010. And now looming on the Big Pharma horizon is zohydro, which is ten times more powerful than vicodin.

Sadly, Americans, once respected as a nation of thinking, self-sufficient people, are now the most drugged and vaccinated people on the face of the earth. With only four percent of the world’s population, we consume half the world’s Big Pharma prescription drugs.

Our children have three times more vaccinations than they did in the 1980s and are three times more likely to be prescribed antidepressants than children in Europe.

The alarming facts just described may seem unbelievable to Americans long accustomed to believing in a country number one in all good things, but consider this “number one”: Three times more vaccinations and antidepressant prescriptions mean three times more profit.

Obscene profits.

Two dozen pharmaceutical companies made over a billion dollars each and some several billion in drug profits for 2010.

We no longer have a free press, because in these depressed times the primary support for television comes from pharmaceutical commercials advocating pills for every problem. Without the pharmaceutical ads TV stations would likely go out of business. In an ironic twist, drug commercials are bolstered somewhat by legal firms offering to help you sue companies whose products have made you ill or killed a loved one.

Dr. Mercola, one of the world’s most well-known natural health advocates and physicians says, “Big Pharma is putting health and liberty on the line.”

Big Pharma has a lucrative monopoly on healthcare and has in its stable most scientists, doctors, school officials and virtually all government agencies. Together they have formed a powerful alliance against health freedom—and individual and community efforts to avoid drugs as much as possible and choose the more natural way of life that has sustained mankind for thousands of years.

The Economic Collapse blog states it more succinctly: “The U.S. health care system has become one gigantic money making scam.”

What to do?

Educate yourself online by studying natural health websites. Read the many fine health books available online or at your local health food store.

Learn about traditional pain relief herbs such as proteolytic enzymes, ginger, wheat germ, yucca powder, oregano and licorice root.

Seek anxiety relief by turning off the TV and exercising, as well as with herbs such as valerian, chamomile and lavender.

Get outdoors. Do some deep breathing.

Consult natural health experts and physicians dedicated to the hard work of preventive, lifestyle medicine rather than a Pharma pill for every ill.

Be very cautious when a prescription is recommended and learn all about it and its possible side effects. The FDA reported 1,742 prescription drug recalls in 2009, up from 426 recalls in 2008!

Talk to neighbors or relatives who have changed their looks, lives and health by changing their lifestyles. Keep in mind that most modern chronic ailments are described as “lifestyle diseases” by the World Health Organization.

Above all, cultivate the willpower and strength to make good choices on food, medicine and activity. There are many sources to lend you positive and healthful guidance and support to help our bodies function as they are intended to.

We don’t need to be helpless sheep being led to the slaughter by the many powerful negative forces around us.

It’s up to each of us to reduce or avoid the risk of death by pill or being a victim of a “lifestyle disease.”

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