Whose Fault?

Americans are far more unhealthy than people in 16 other developed countries, and it’s probably our own fault, experts reported on Wednesday. We die younger from diseases such as obesity and heart disease, and we are far more likely to be murdered and die in car accidents, the researchers at the National Academy of Sciences found.  U.S. culture has a lot to do with it and policymakers need to take action right away to reverse the trend, the experts who wrote the report advised.

This came from an NBC.com story.   Immediately it goes on to quote the experts who conclude that we should make new laws to protect ourselves…..from ourselves.   When are they going to learn that you can’t legislate personal responsibility?    The article points out that we spend so much on healthcare yet we are not any healthier so it must be something we can fix by creating new laws.   But that is crap.    Healthcare costs so much because there are too many third parties, middlemen and administrators taking most of the money.  Also, we are not any healthier because we eat the Standard American Diet (SAD) which kills us.   Lastly, and maybe most importantly, the majority of patients DO NOT want to change this lifestyle.   So this is what happens when you sew the seeds of poor health habits.  Why is anyone surprised?

Douglas Farrago MD

Douglas Farrago MD is a full-time practicing family doc in Forest, Va. He started Forest Direct Primary Care where he takes no insurance and bills patients a monthly fee. He is board certified in the specialty of Family Practice. He is the inventor of a product called the Knee Saver which is currently in the Baseball Hall of Fame. The Knee Saver and its knock-offs are worn by many major league baseball catchers. He is also the inventor of the CryoHelmet used by athletes for head injuries as well as migraine sufferers. Dr. Farrago is the author of four books, two of which are the top two most popular DPC books. From 2001 – 2011, Dr. Farrago was the editor and creator of the Placebo Journal which ran for 10 full years. Described as the Mad Magazine for doctors, he and the Placebo Journal were featured in the Washington Post, US News and World Report, the AP, and the NY Times. Dr. Farrago is also the editor of the blog Authentic Medicine which was born out of concern about where the direction of healthcare is heading and the belief that the wrong people are in charge. This blog has been going daily for more than 15 years Article about Dr. Farrago in Doximity Email Dr. Farrago – [email protected]

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8 Responses

  1. T Newberry says:

    It is definitely not individual freedoms that are causing our problems. The New York restaurant industry tried to frame Michael Bloomberg’s efforts to ban the sale of large sodas as impinging on personal freedoms. What he was trying to do was limit the freedom of businesses to take advantage of known human weaknesses. Unless we stop protecting corporate freedom over individual freedom, we are stuck on this path.

  2. Dr. Josh says:

    “In 1946, Dr. C. Hunter Shelden had opened a neurological practice at Huntington Memorial Hospital in Pasadena, California. In the early 1950s, Dr. Shelden had made a major contribution to the automotive industry with his idea of retractable seat belts. This came about greatly in part from the high number of head injuries coming through the emergency rooms. He investigated the early seat belts whose primitive designs were implicated in these injuries and deaths. His findings were published in the November 5, 1955 Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) in which he proposed not only the retractable seat belt, but also recessed steering wheels, reinforced roofs, roll bars, door locks and passive restraints such as the air bag. Subsequently in 1959, Congress passed legislation requiring all automobiles to comply with certain safety standards.” (Wikipedia)

    Now who among those reading this website would argue with mandatory safety features in cars, or laws requiring seatbelt use? Maybe a few die-hard libertarians. The point is- physicians can influence government entities to create sensible, constitutional laws that prevent injury and death. The Food Industry should not be exempt.

  3. big picture doc says:

    I so agree with the comments regarding all the money going to the intermediates at the insurance companies, and I am so pissed that my tax dollars go to promoting big corporate factory farming crap. The lovely Republicans recently pushed through a deal to continue this unfair practice, and they took away funds for the organic family farmers. But stupid Republcan physicians will continue to elect them. I just want to scream, but I do agree that we should not force folks to eat certain things. If they want to be just as stupid and misinformed as their Republican physicians, then so be it!

  4. Kurt says:

    “When are they going to learn that you can’t legislate personal responsibility?”

    I’d like to add you can’t legislate away stupidity.
    Not a damn thing is going to change in this country until people are hit hard in their pocketbooks for their bad habits. All’s they have to do is look at Height and Weight. “Oh, we’re sorry. You don’t meet the critera for our policy discounts.”

  5. Andy says:

    While I don’t think the government should necessarily take such draconian steps as banning fast food, I think that there are many steps we could take to change our eating habits. Corn subsidies distort the food market, making everything from red meat to soda much cheaper and easily available than it would be. If we are going to send money to farmers, we should change the payments so that they drive down the price of vegetables. We may have a taste for crappy food now, but if we were to go to the grocery store and see that the cost to make a basic cheeseburger is $15 and a salad costs 50 cents, economic pressures will force many to eat better.

  6. Pat says:

    A few years back the great libertarian humorist P.J. O’Rourke observed that we shoudl have a new constitutional ammendment guaranteeing the right of every American “to #&$% himself up.” If people want to live entirely on Cheetos-flavored ice cream and fried sugar water, it is no one else’s damn business!! It is when the collective will – abetted by craven physicians – makes it everyone’s business that we get into trouble.

    And really, our Medicare and social security costs are problematic enough without any troublesome increase in longevity.

  7. Ken says:

    I believe the Americans love of medical procedures and medications likely contributes to this increased mortality, i.e., how much CT scan radiation do we get compared to others?

  8. flawler86 says:

    Because we are smarter than you and we are going to spend your children’s money to pass laws to make you do what you refuse to do for yourself.

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