Wednesday, August 1, 2012

How do Vitamins affect Healthiness? What is Healthiness?

Dr. Mercola's excellent post on Vitamin D and Breast Cancers, and the poor quality of comments, prompted me to think about the differences between illness and healthiness, using Vitamin deficiencies as an example. The Mercola article says that many people suffer from a Vitamin D deficiency, and that deficiency causes many illnesses.

I take a different view.  I see a Vitamin Deficiency as one of many possible 'unhealthinesses'.  Unfortunately, healthiness is not in the dictionary - so neither is unhealthiness. My comments to the Mercola post are as follows:

Vitamin D is essential to many factors of healthiness. Our medical system has a focus on 'illness', not healthiness. Studies of Vitamin D - like studies of all vitamins, are generally weak and biased to the medical side.  Healthicine, the arts and sciences of health and healthiness, does not exist inside the medical system for a reason - healthicine is larger than medicine, and includes medicine as a subset.  If we want to study the true value of Vitamin D, and other healthiness factors - we need to learn to study health, not just illness.

Many chronic diseases, including cancers, may actually be 'unhealthinesses', not 'illnesses'.  What's the difference? The distinction between an unhealthiness and an illness is not well understood. A Vitamin deficiency that does not lead directly to an illness is an unhealthiness - it creates a possibility for illness.  The more severe it becomes, the more likely that some illnesses will occur or increase in severity. A Vitamin deficiency, or several, may be severe enough to create several illnesses at one time.  Are you suffering from a Vitamin D deficiency, or from cancer, caused by a deficiency?

Vitamin D may well be part of a constellation of deficiencies, or unhealthinesses, that lead to chronic illness. But we don't study healthiness (it's not in the dictionary - a healthiness is a specific incidence of health, like resting heartbeat,  Vitamin D consumption, level and types of exercise, etc.) therefore we don't understand unhealthinesses.

It is clear that increasing your Vitamin D has very healthy effects - that the healthiest levels of Vitamin D are much higher than most people have. This has been studied and demonstrated with many illnesses.  We need to study how it affects healthiness. We need a healthiness paradigm.

to your health, tracy

Tracy is the author of two book about healthicine: