Monday, May 17, 2010

About me and Health Freedom

This is personal. About me. And about my search for health and health freedom. Many years ago, I started to look with my personal, critical eye at my few encounters with medical professions and the alternative medicine professions. I was, to be honest, very disappointed. I still am very disappointed. Not that they don't provide solutions. I have been very happy with many of the results provided by my doctors, dentists and alternative healers. In a few cases, not so happy, but in general, very happy.

But I am not happy with our medical system, how it works and how it doesn't work. I find it to be very unscientific and sometimes downright misleading and dishonest.

As the internet developed, I did boldly go to places like The Cancer Society the Arthritis Foundation and I read many books on health and medicine. It occurred to me, over time, that they were not telling 'the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth' - although I did not understand why, and I still do not understand. Maybe I never will, and maybe I don't need to. It was clear to me that much of the 'health and medicine' information on the internet was also a 'battleground' between medical professionals and alternative medicine practitioners.

I was very dismayed. Continual arguments about the validity of 'licensed medical practitioners' vs 'alternative medical practitioners' are muddying the waters and confusing evidence and facts about health and medicine. Science was out the window - although licensed medical practitioners claim it is 'on their side'.

I tried to create useful documents on health as part of my learning process - and still have many of these documents from the past 10 years. They provide a a foundation for my current understanding of our situation.

Then I saw some information on the internet about Health Freedom. WOW!

But when I looked closely, I found much of the 'same old, same old'. Many 'Health Freedom' sites are provided by alternative medicine practitioners, to validate their theories and their professions. I have no objection to their theories and their craft - it's just not Health Freedom. Today I google 'health freedom' and the first hit is the The Natural Solutions Foundation whose mission is "to discover, develop, demonstrate and disseminate natural solutions". The first item on their list of 'what we stand for' is We stand for the freedom to choose allopathic and naturopathic healthcare according to individual free will. I don't object to that - it's just that it's not about health nor about health freedom - it's about their choice of solutions.

I found the Institute for Health Freedom - actually a useful and interesting site, to be, unfortunately, very focussed on a political, United States view of health and health freedom. Their definition of 'health freedom' is The freedom to choose one's health care providers and treatments, and to maintain confidential relationships with one's providers, without interference from government or private third parties. It sounds good when you say it quickly, but..what does it really say? First of all, it is not about health - a common mistake. It is about sickness - and the ability to choose 'treatments'. And secondly, it is not about 'freedom', it is about 'confidential relationships, without interference'. The Institute for Health Freedom does not, wisely, choose to present thier definition of health. And lastly, it's about the establishment - not about health.

I am interested in a scientific, world view of health and health freedom. And a personal view.

In summary, I have found much information and many internet sites about medicine, and about alternative medicine, and many sites about politics - but very little actual information about health and health freedom.

What is health? What is health freedom? How should are medical systems work to ensure that our knowledge of health moves forward scientifically?

This blog, and this website are my attempts to learn about health and health freedom, and to document that learning, and to present the information I discover so that you can think for yourself, discuss, criticize and appreciate.

Tracy is the author of two book about healthicine: 

I encourage comments - all feedback is positive.