Intended for healthcare professionals

Editor's Choice

The BMJ Awards: celebrating excellence

BMJ 2016; 355 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.i5643 (Published 20 October 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;355:i5643

Health & Homeostasis

Health is homeostasis. Homeostasis is an internal feedback system that stabilizes and balances our body's chemistry, so that our organs work smoothly and efficiently with each other. Sickness is the disruption of homeostasis, which doctors treat with medicine. But medicine adjusts one homeostatic mechanism by disrupting another, which leads to more sickness and more medicine. This is why medicines are so profitable, but have so many side effects and adverse reactions. So healthcare should minimize medicine and maximize holistic factors, such as lifestyle, diet, exercise, education, recreation, and relationships.

Competing interests: No competing interests

20 October 2016
Hugh Mann
Physician
Retired
New York, NY, USA