What I learned as a medical journalist

“Have you ever thought you’d like to be a journalist?”

Well, here’s the good and the bad. First, I was well trained at the Harvard Medical School, but as a journalist I’ve had an unprecedented learning experience searching for information I would never have sought before, on all sorts of topics.

The bad? The profession requires responsibility, discipline, thick skin and recurring deadlines. So I’ve written about the experience in a book titled, What I Learned as a Medical Journalist.

I quickly learned that hypocrisy and distortion of the truth can affect doctors and humanitarian organizations. Years ago I urged the government to legalize heroin to ease the agony of terminal cancer patients. I won the battle with great difficulty but lost the war. Bureaucrats put asinine, inhumane restrictions on its use. Their decision was a disastrous error, and those responsible should rot in hell for the untold suffering they have caused terminal cancer patients.

As a medical journalist I quickly became convinced that Pogo was right when he remarked, “We have identified the enemy and the enemy is us.” How disastrous it is that every 40 seconds a new case of diabetes is diagnosed in North America and every 37 seconds someone dies of coronary attack!

But the Korean War had already shown what was happening when autopsies revealed that 77% of U.S. soldiers, with an average age of 22, had significant coronary disease. One percent of the enemy had it! North Americans were obviously doing something terribly wrong.

Without the research for my column I’m sure I would have been convinced that cholesterol was the culprit in cardiac deaths, and that cholesterol-lowering drugs (CLDs) were the only answer. Now, I’m convinced that CLDs represent an unmitigated disaster of unparalleled proportions, the greatest medical hoax ever committed by pharmaceutical companies.

I’ve witnessed North Americans becoming the most over-drugged society in history. Now, a well patient is someone who hasn’t seen enough doctors or had a barrage of tests done. This over-treatment carries a heavy price tag.

For instance, it’s ironic that every year 100,000 North Americans die from prescription drugs, the ones that were supposed to cure them. Add on another 700,000 that are admitted to an emergency room due to unintended drug reactions. Yet to my knowledge no dead bodies result from natural remedies. Without being a journalist I might never have tried natural remedies before resorting to prescription medication.

My book covers a variety of these issues, for instance, the myths of cholesterol that lead so many people astray. It vividly illustrates that “It’s not the things you don’t know that get you into trouble, it’s the things you know for sure that ain’t so.”

Over the last 37 years, as a doctor and journalist, I’ve learned that practicing medicine can be a grim affair. This is why I believe it’s vital to keep a sense of humour in our stress-laden society. So the last chapter of my book covers a number of humorous topics, as I’ve never known anyone to die from laughter.

The book explains why I believe there should be a pub in every hospital. How I discovered the most embarrassing sexual injury. How many of us could pass the fighter pilot test. And why I might never have been a journalist if I hadn’t married a smart woman.

But my most important learning experience? It was interviewing Dr Linus Pauling who told me animals make Vitamin C and humans lost this ability eons ago. And why this was responsible for the epidemic of coronary attack. Later, Dr. Sydney Bush proved that high concentrations of Vitamin C and lysine, now available as Medi-C Plus, can prevent and reverse coronary artery and other arterial blockages.

It’s catastrophic that this revolutionary research is ignored by cardiologists when this natural remedy is for the asking in Health Food Stores and can save countless lives from the number one killer.

Adding it all up, journalism was an unexpected career and one hell of a ride. So my thanks to Lady Luck that I didn’t miss this experience. What I Learned as a medical Journalist is available in health food stores.

See the web site www.docgiff.com. For comments info@docgiff.com.

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