Sunday, July 1, 2012

Unhealthiness vs Disease

There are many so called diseases, that are actually not 'diseases', they are actually serious 'unhealthiness'.  We need to distinguish between unhealthiness and disease.

What's the difference?  In the posts Concepts of Illness and Disease, and Healthiness and Healthicines, we saw that a disease occurs at the red line of diagnosis. Diagnosis occurs when the unhealthiness has become so severe that it can be diagnosed as a disease.

Once a disease is diagnosed, we often look for a single solution.  An antibiotic for a bacterial infection.  An antifungal for a fungus infection.  A drug for a disease. We treat disease with a surgical approach - a very specific solution that tackles a key point in a serious problem.

Treatment is judged as a success if it moves the unhealthiness across the line of diagnosis.  Duh. You can be just a shade over the diagnosis threshold, but according to the medical community you might be judged as 'healthy', because you cannot be diagnosed with a disease.  This problem exists, in part, because medical doctors have a monopoly on diagnosis.

Unhealthiness is broader than disease. It includes disease - but also the gradient between perfect health and disease. It is harder to recognize, harder to identify, and much harder to treat. It must be treated with healthicines, not medicines. We all know situations where someone seemed 'perfectly healthy' and then they were 'struck' by a disease like cancer.  But we also know that cancer normally takes years to develop.  Years of unhealthiness that is not recognized.  Arthritis is also a disease of unhealthiness, not a disease with with a single cause.  There are many similar disease: Alzheimer's, macular degeneration, obesity. A disease sometimes affect just a single part of the body - an unhealthiness tends to affect the entire hierarchy of healthicine.

How can we recognize the difference between a serious unhealthiness and a disease? A primary disease has a simple cause. The cause can be identified and the disease can be treated. It can often be prevented or the progress stopped.  

An serious unhealthiness is typically a condition with many causes or contributing factors. Is obesity a disease?  Or is it an unhealthiness?  Labeling it as a disease leads to attempts to find simple 'disease' causes and solutions to a problem.  The magic bullet. There is no magic bullet to healthiness.  

A combination of many different unhealthinesses might not be severe enough to be diagnosed as a disease - but may cause severe health problems.  Many so called diseases might actually be a combination of different types of unhealthiness, each of which is below the threshold of a disease.

You can't fix a serious unhealthiness with a single solution - it's the wrong solution to the wrong problem. It's more complicated.  If you try to treat an unhealthiness with a single solution - you will likely create more, different and possibly worse unhealthiness. It doesn't matter if your 'solution' is a drug, from conventional medicine, or a natural product, from alternative medicine, it's still the wrong answer - to the wrong question.

The first step to resolve an unhealthiness is to recognize it, and to recognize that is not a 'disease'. Once we learn to recognize unhealthiness and to distinguish between 'disease' and 'unhealthiness', we will learn to eliminate many so called 'diseases' by the application of health.  

In many cases, we don't recognize an unhealthiness until it becomes a serious problem - at which point it is diagnosed as a 'disease'. Like the frog in a pot of water on the stove.  It doesn't realize the water is slowly getting hot - and is eventually cooked.  If we have symptoms of arthritis, we might ignore minor pains and get more and more used to them.  As the pain grows we become less sensitive.  The pain becomes part of us.  The arthritis grows in severity.  By the time we recognize it as a serious problem - it may have caused irreparable damage. I believe the same happens with many degenerative diseases, obesity and even cancer. People often try to treat obesity with unhealthy, short term dietary changes, when what is needed is a permanent health change.  Of course permanent health changes are much more difficult to identify, and much more difficult to implement.  Many healthy changes initially have strange 'symptoms of healthiness', that cause rejection.

With arthritis, as with many unhealthy conditions - using drugs can actually make the problem worse, treating the symptoms, or some minor aspect of the condition - while letting the cause persist and grow under the level of awareness.

There are many unhealthinesses that are susceptible to simple changes. These are the result of simple deficiencies or excesses.  If you are deficient in Vitamin C, you can resolve the unhealthiness by consuming Vitamin C.  If you are suffering from an excess of many single nutrients or toxins - you can eliminate the unhealthiness by changing your habits.  However, these unhealthiness conditions can be very difficult to identify if they are not so serious that they can be diagnosed as diseases.  And by that time - they might have caused serious, possibly irreparable damage.

Everyone has a right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of healthiness. Everyone needs to have unhealthiness recognized, measured and tracked, and healthy actions recommended - before disease appears.

to your health, tracy
Tracy is the author of two book about healthicine: 

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This post was also published on Health Freedom Alliance 
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