“At the turn of the twentieth century, acute, infectious diseases were the top three causes of death, and our medical paradigm evolved in that context. Today, seven of the top ten causes of death are chronic disease. Our system of medicine needs to adapt to better match the challenge of chronic, rather than acute, disease.”
“It’s wonderful that our lifespans have increased, but if we spend our final years – or even decades – of that longer life suffering from not just one, but multiple chronic diseases, is that something to be proud of? In fact, this is exactly what studies suggest is happening.”
“One in two Americans now has a chronic disease, and one in four has multiple chronic diseases. Chronic disease accounts for 86 per cent of healthcare expenditures… 91 per cent of prescriptions.”
By far the most common strategy is to wait to make changes in what you eat only after symptoms of some disease state appear. Consider, though, that these degenerative diseases take many years, even decades, to develop, and so not always healed in a week or two. This isn’t widely recognised, as medication that suppresses symptoms can seem to work quickly, even though often temporarily.
For example, an autoimmune disease isn’t like ebola, where one day you don’t have it and then you are exposed to the virus and then you do have it. The concept of dietary intervention is relatively new and not widely accepted yet for so many reasons.
To be fair, there is evidence that people don’t change their eating habits even when strongly advised to do so. Dieting itself is well known to have a 95 per cent failure rate. And that is precisely where my passion lies for the work I do.
Kresser advocates teams of health coaches to work with doctors and can spend more time with patients. You will be hearing more about all of this as time goes on. Maybe not from me, but changes are on their way, and I’m hoping they will mostly be beneficial for us all.