Dr. Gray's Straight Talk

Honest and blunt healthcare discussion and advice.

Posts Tagged ‘asthma’

Alternatives to “8 Drugs Your Doctor Wouldn’t Take”

Posted by Dr. Gray on Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Some time ago, I read this article in Men’s Health magazine. It’s a well written article, but with a very small amount of research, it could have been so much more. Perhaps I was wanting too much from a brief article, and it was meant as more of an attention grabber than an informative discussion of alternatives. With that in mind, here is some of the info I would have liked to see regarding the eight drugs (and the conditions they are meant to treat) referenced:

Advair – an asthma medication that can increase the severity of an asthma attack. The author’s suggestion was to just take corticosteroids instead. How about this… find out what’s leading to the asthma and fix that!? Mild asthma, for which Advair is intended to treat, is most often associated with a trigger that leads to an abnormal reaction in the respiratory tract. First, avoid the trigger… be it pet dander, food sensitivities, chemical irritants, cigarette smoke, etc. Then, determine why your body responds differently from the guy next to you when you’re both breathing the same air, or performing the same activities. Once the dysfunction is identified, correct that. Although it’s been given little emphasis in the research literature, most natural health providers can relate multiple instances of asthma resolution following homeostasis-based techniques. Asthma is basically an overactive immunologic response to an irritant… in other words, your body is over-reacting to something it perceives as a threat. Bring the body’s functions back into balance (homeostasis), and it won’t over-react.

Avandia – a diabetes medication that increases one’s risk of heart failure or heart attack. I was impressed with the author here. He actually did mention the use of niacin, a natural B vitamin. Although diabetes is a difficult condition to treat, the best treatment is not to get it in the first place! Follow a healthy lifestyle from the start, and you’ll likely never have to worry about this disease of malnutrition. Too many sugars, processed foods, additives, preservatives, and worthless calories and the pancreas eventually runs out of gas. Eat right, exercise, and feed the body the nutrients it needs and it will take care of you.

Celebrex – a pain reliever linked to increased risks of stomach bleeding, kidney trouble, and liver damage… and could double or triple your risk of dying from cardiovascular disease. “You may die, but at least your back will feel better.” There are volumes of research on alternatives for pain relief. Obviously, chiropractic works wonders in cases involving structural causes. Acupuncture has proven very effective with pain control. Natural enzymes have been known to aid in the control of the inflammatory process. Studies have shown Omega-3 Fatty Acids to be as effective, if not more, than traditional non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs(NSAIDs). Given that there are so many alternatives when it comes to pain relief, why would anyone continue to choose a medication so dangerous?

Ketek – if you have to have an antibiotic, don’t pick this one which has a much higher incidence of severe liver damage. Choose instead to boost your immune system and help your body fight the infection off naturally. Simple way to think of it is, Don’t feed the infection. Avoid foods or liquids that bacteria thrive on; sugars, carbohydrates, etc. Eat foods high in antioxidants and water content. Cruciferous veggies (asparagus, cabbage, brussel sprouts, etc.) are an excellent choice if you’ve been exposed to infectious organisms. Slam your system with whole food source Vitamin C (ascorbic acid is not “Vitamin C”) and get your rest. Garlic is the best and most powerful herb known to be antiviral, antibacterial, antihelminic, anticancerous, and overall just darned good for you.

Prilosec and Nexium – antacids that ruin your digestion, raise your risk of pneumonia, and have a suspected link to heart attacks. Easiest way to control heartburn? Lose weight! Excess belly fat, and overstretching related to overeating, lead to weakness of the sphincter that prevents acid from getting into the esophagus. Abnormal amounts of acid in the stomach can also contribute to reflux. Make sure there is uninterrupted nerve communication between the stomach and brain. This is often affected by chiropractic adjustment at the T6/7 level. Avoid digestive irritants such as NSAIDs, sugars, animal fats, alcohol, and smoking. Probably most important in this era… supplement your diet with natural digestive enzymes.

Visine – “gets the red out.” Unfortunately, continued use can actually lead to even more redness due to the perpetuation of the dilation-contraction cycle. Artificial tears are a safer option for wetting the eyes without chemically affecting the vasculature.

Pseudoephedrine – constricts blood vessels, then raises the blood pressure and heart rate… can you say “stroke” boys and girls? It’s a decongestant for God’s sake. Are you really willing to risk a stroke to get rid of a stuffy nose? Use a neti pot… acupuncture… cayenne pepper… gargle salt water… eat garlic and/or horseradish… use menthol/camphor… there are so many natural ways to loosen up a stuffy nose, it’s ridiculous to settle for these dangerous medications simply because the TV ad made it look good.

These are just the eight meds this author chose to report on. The list of medications most doctors won’t consider taking is long and distinguished. The main problem I see is the constant reliance on this pill or that pill to “fix” whatever condition one has, when instead, the emphasis should be on, “What aspect of my lifestyle is allowing this condition to get started?” I would venture to guess that a very high percentage of the diseases that are prevalent in society, are completely avoidable if only we would alter our lifestyle choices. Go back to the quote on the “About This Blog” page:

“The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will interest his patients in the care of the human frame, in diet, and in the cause and prevention of disease.” – Thomas Edison

Now ask yourself, are we moving closer to or further away from this mentality?

Dr. Gray

Gray Chiropractic is a full-service natural health care office in Independence, east of Kansas City. For further information check our website www.graychiropractic.com.


Posted in General Health, Nutrition, Prescription Medicines | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Personal news and answers about chiropractic for infants.

Posted by Dr. Gray on Thursday, August 7, 2008

He’s finally here! That’s right folks… we are the proud new grandparents of our first grandchild! Born last night, Preston Scott came into the world at 8 lbs. 10 oz. and was 20.5 inches long. He’s got a full head of hair and some powerful lungs. We want to thank you for all of your prayers and blessings you’ve bestowed upon our family.

He’ll get his first chiropractic examination later this afternoon. Due to a long and difficult labor, and in relation to the violent nature of the birthing process, there is a good possibility that he’ll have some biomechanical insult that we can correct before it develops into something worse.

I often get questions about children and infants, and whether chiropractic care is safe and/or effective for them. The answer is a resounding YES! In fact, it is probably more safe for them than it is for adults. As youngsters, they don’t have the years of scar tissue and damage from injury and neglect. They’ve not developed abnormal eating habits or unhealthy diets that leave their bodies malnourished and toxic. They still have a great deal of flexibility due to the health and tensile strength of their ligaments. They haven’t developed degenerative spurs or arthritis like so many of my older patients.

In short, there are relatively few complications that can make a chiropractic case difficult. Chiropractors undergo specialized pediatric education and are actually legally licensed to deliver babies in most states. In addition to our education about the health and idiosyncracies of a pediatric case, we also undergo extensive training in specialized adjusting techniques designed specifically for babies, infants, toddlers, and children. I can assure you that it is just as safe… and just as important… to have your baby examined by and treated, if necessary, by your chiropractic doctor.

Although the primary reason for treating babies is to optimize biomechanical function of the neuromusculoskeletal system (nerves, muscles, bones, and joints), a wide variety of conditions have been documented to respond to chiropractic care. One of the most common is otitis media… otherwise known as a middle ear infection. The underlying reason this condition responds so well to chiropractic care is unknown, but I think it has to do with an optimally functioning nervous system which allows the immune system to work more effectively. Other conditions that have shown positve response to chiropractic care include: asthma, allergies, colic, indigestion, diarrhea, constipation, insomnia, and failure to thrive.

If you, or a member of your family, have a new baby in the family, I encourage you to take them to your local chiropractor for an examination. If you’re in the Kansas City area, we’d be happy to take a look at your new bundle of joy and verify that he or she is starting life on the right foot.

Thanks again,


Posted in General Chiropractic, General Health | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

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