Medicinal drugs: helpful or harmful?


Madison Michaud, Journalism 1 Staff Reporter

Medicine has been a part of our society for centuries. From herbal remedies in Indian tribes to the life-saving drugs we use in hospitals today. The question is, are these drugs really life-saving? According to recent studies, there may be something else that could save your life.

At Woodcreek there is a mandatory health class that must be taken in order to graduate high school. This class includes information about medicine, eating habits, stress management, drug abuse, and how to deal with it all. During the course of the class, students watch “Food Matters”, a video about medicine and eating habits in Americans today.

From 1999 to now medicine has changed tremendously. Mr. Mason, health teacher at Woodcreek says that information about eating right has always been taught, but the natural medicine is new. Mason stated,

“The megadoses of vitamins, that’s what they [the doctors in the video] are introducing. New information about vitamins and superfood”.

In 1998 new drugs to manage a cancer patients pain were being tested and approved. Now doctors like the ones in “Food Matters” describe ways that drugs like these can be much more harmful than vitamins and healthy eating habits.

Doctors have proven that when high doses of vitamin C were given to patients, their health slowly improved, until they were rid of cancer. Dr. Jillian Whittaker states,

“When [vitamin C] is administered in high doses by IV it does kill cancer cells”.

The video also provided information about recovering heart disease patients who got rid of their disease by staying on a strict vegetarian diet.

Each year 100,000 Americans die from prescription drugs. This number does not include mistaken prescriptions from doctors, wrong fillings by pharmacists, or drug-overdose; the number is simply deaths from prescription medication side effects. In 2005, 250 billion dollars was spent on this medication that seems to be hurting people more than helping.

Although drugs are needed for certain aspects of our health, in some areas prescription drugs should be avoided. “Food Matters”, reveals how a healthy diet and frequent exercise can prevent certain diseases in the first place, rather than prescribing drugs to fix them after the fact.

So why are we fixing the hole after it begins to leak? And why do we continue to patch that hole instead of putting up a new wall? The health care system provide preventative care, teaching people how to keep healthy and stay healthy instead of fixing health issues that could have been avoided. According to 1 in every 4 American eats fast food everyday.  We should have a health care system that teaches people how to keep their bodies healthy so that they can prevent these life-threatening diseases before they happen.

So are the medicinal drugs we use for almost every disease we have, really that helpful?  You decide.