Four in 100 deaths worldwide are caused by alcohol, says WHOBMJ 2011; 342 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.d1032 (Published 14 February 2011) Cite this as: BMJ 2011;342:d1032
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Four in one hundred deaths are now caused by alcohol says the author.
And the recommendation follows, governments (!) must do far more to
curtail excess drinking.
While I wholeheartedly agree that society ought to get a better grip
on excess drinking, an even more pressing problem exists that appears to
have a bigger (negative)impact on the health of society:
No one can say for sure how many deaths are caused by "doctoring"
people. Surely, the number is huge.
So, the widespread ingestion of xenobiotics under the guise of curing the
diseases that man somehow "contracts" ought to be addresed as well?
Far be it from me to compare alcohol to medicinal drugs but it must
be said that ethanol is a rather "natural" substance which can, if used
prudently, improve the health of both mind and spirits.
Orthomolecular medicine, co-founded by Linus Pauling and Abram Hoffer,
maintained that substances normally present in the body are the key to
curing and ameliorating disease.The excesses of ethanol and alchemy rarely
produce good outcomes.
Man-made drugs more often than not are concoctions that are given in
the hope that they will influence (positively) a given illness while
little if any attention is paid to the true cause of those illnesses.
Yes, there are drugs that have merit and there are even those that
save lives. However, the vast majority are useless chemical compounds that
quite often do more harm than good.
Folks have been conditioned to expect help from the doctor's
prescription when they do get sick which, in itself shifts responsibility
away from the patient to an "expert" who will most likely succeed and save
the patient and the day. Should (s)he fail then it must surely be God's
will and no one can be blamed.
That, and other occasions where there is good reason to become
depressed, may be the time when excess drinking commences in many.
Should the doctor be quick in acting and on top of things (s)he may
prescribe antidepressants, in the (often vain) hope of preventing self-
and substance abuse.
Prevention is an empty word only.
A relative of mine who lived to the ripe old age of 102 and was very
fond of dabbling in philosophy, she would point her finger at the
significant drop in death rates during doctors' strikes and she not only
espoused but actively participated in what can only properly be called
frequent "spiritual sessions" with friends and relatives. This, there is
no doubt in my mind, was more conducive to her long and healthy life than
any medicines she might have been coerced to partake of.
Competing interests: No competing interests