Using the Amish to Promote Your Cause


I caught this article called Why the Amish Don’t Get Sick: Things You Can Learn From Them via FB.  I started laughing as soon as I opened it up.  It was from a site called LA Healthy Living and it makes some ridiculous claims.  For one, do the Amish not get sick?  I am not so sure of that but let’s let that go so can you read their five points:

  1. The Amish Don’t Get Vaccinated
  2. The Amish Eat Organic, Locally Grown Food
  3. The Amish Eat Plenty of Healthy Fats
  4. The Amish Are Physically Active
  5. The Amish Live Stress Free Lives

Right off the bat they lost me with the vaccine thing.  Obviously, this is a anti-vaccine group with no appreciation of the exhaustive science disproving their autism theory.   The local food, healthy fat, and physical activity theories are fine.  I am all for it.  Are the Amish stress free?  I really doubt it but I have enough evidence to back that up as this author has to back up his or her claim.

If you read some of the comments, you will see the pushback given to this article’s claims.   Maybe the food the Amish eat isn’t so perfect?   Maybe they grow genetically modified crops?  Maybe they are getting vaccinated?  Here is one comment that sums it up:

This article might seem nice but it’s not remotely true. I’m from rural Pennsylvnaia with huge Amish community nearby. My mom worked with the USDA for a while and she said the Amish have some of the worst code violations because they use tons and tons of chemicals in their food production. Nothing they do is “natural” or “organic” in terms of what goes into their food (they’re inspected for the food they produce, package and sell). Also there is no record keeping of autism in the Amish community. They don’t go to modern doctors so their children don’t get diagnosed. That said, though they avoid doctors for most ailments, many of their children DO get vaccinated. Also, as was mentioned above in the comments, they shop at Walmart and modern grocery stores. They often live without electricity in their homes (not true in their factory style farms), so preserved junk food is really common.  They DO lead simplier lives, and seem very much at peace and happy. However, they don’t live any longer, and sometimes shorter lives, because of the hard labor and lack of medical care.

Myths are hard to fight and unfortunately this new Amish “myth” may be a new one and it is flying around the web and FB.  People need to NOT believe everything they see or advice they hear.  Let me quote a line from one of my favorite movies, Kingpin, that has no connection to this article but is funny as hell:

Neighbor: Hey Roy, can you get sick from drinking piss?

Roy: I think you can.

Neighbor: Even if it’s your own?

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] 

  2 comments for “Using the Amish to Promote Your Cause

  1. Stella Fitzgibbons MD
    January 1, 2014 at 4:52 pm

    Sounds like those blogs you read every so often about how kids used to grow up just fine without bike helmets and seat belts and lifeguards. Yeah, the ones who survived it did fine–because there wasn’t much doctors could do for massive head injuries or near-drownings, so nobody ever saw the brain-injured ones ‘cuz they were all dead.

  2. Jody
    December 31, 2013 at 6:20 pm

    What ignorance. I challenge them to visit the home in Holmes, County Ohio for their disabled people. I’ve been there for charity auctions, there is mental retardation, blindness, cerebral palsy, dwarfism, gee, just like us English, maybe even worse because of the inbreeding that happens to a degree. Those people are well cared for and loved and roll at speed in their electric wheelchairs and the home was immaculate.
    The Amish are human beings with the same ills as the rest of us. After spending two days at a carriage and horse auction, I paid a heavy price of whooping cough, guessing from the many, many Amish at the sale, someone shared the wealth.

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