The American health care system is failing. Americans spend 16.5% of our total economy on health care, estimated to be $2.4 Trillion in 2008 (that’s $2,400,000,000,000) which equates to twice as much per capita as other industrialized nations. Despite this obscene level of spending, we rank at the bottom of the list compared to our peers by measure of quality and outcomes. Americans pay more and get less value for their health care dollar than any other country in the world.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reports that about 119 million, or 64.5%, of US adults are either overweight or obese. According to projections, this number is expected to increase to 73% by 2008. Young Americans today now face a lower life expectancy rate than their parents, thanks largely to the effects of poor nutrition and sedentary lifestyles.
The AP reported on May 14, 2008 that for the first time, it appears that more than half of all insured Americans are taking prescription medicines regularly for chronic health problems. The most widely used drugs are those to lower high blood pressure and cholesterol — problems often linked to heart disease, obesity and diabetes, all of which are nearly 100% preventable with lifestyle modification.
The data shows that last year, 51 percent of American children and adults were taking one or more prescription drugs for a chronic condition, up from 50 percent the previous four years and 47 percent in 2001. Most of these drugs are taken daily.
Medication use for chronic problems (read taken daily for life) was seen in all demographic groups. Almost two-thirds of women 20 and older, one in four children and teenagers, 52 percent of adult men and three out of four people 65 or older take one or more prescription drugs regularly.
Most horrific is that among seniors, 28 percent of women and nearly 22 percent of men take five or more medicines regularly. All of which carry side effects too numerous to list, up to and including death. The estimated total number of iatrogenic deaths—that is, deaths induced inadvertently by a physician or surgeon or by medical treatment or diagnostic procedures— in the U.S. annually is estimated to be approaching 1,000,000.
The current state of affairs in the U.S. with respect to diet is too bleak to even discuss in detail in this article, but here are some highlights:
The U.S. Census bureau data indicate that Americans drink a significant number of their calories. Americans drink about a gallon of soda a week along with a half gallon each of milk, bottled water, coffee and beer.
The biggest single source of calories in America is not pizza or burgers, but soft drinks. Soft drinks containing High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) supply just over 7% of all the calories consumed in the U.S. every year. The consumption of HFCS increased by more than 1000% between 1970 and 1990, far exceeding the changes in intake of any other food or food group. A possibly toxic chemical sugar alternative made from genetically modified, government subsidized corn is the leading staple of the American diet.
Americans are exposed to thousands of different food chemicals including: food additives, preservatives, synthetic sweeteners, pesticide residues, environmental contaminants, mycotoxins, novel food ingredients, packaging-material migrants, flavoring substances and other added nutrients. Food chemicals make up only part of the 75,000 synthetic chemicals developed and released into the environment since World War II. Fewer than half have been tested for potential toxicity to human beings.
America is a nation of poorly nourished, overly sedentary, chemically exposed individuals. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle requires a diet of natural, healthy, nutrient rich food, reducing toxin exposure from foods and drugs, regular exercise, normal sleep, emotional, spiritual health, and a fully functioning nerve system.
These factors all contribute to sickness and disease because they interfere with the body’s ability to produce new healthy cells. The brain controls and regulates, through the nerve system, all cellular function in the body. Proper cellular function is the key factor which determines ones health. The human organism is a community of 70 trillion cells working together, in harmony. This symphony is conducted by the brain and orchestrated by and through the nerve system. Chiropractic adjustments remove any impediment to the communication between the conductor and the orchestra.
Any attempt to extricate one’s self from the current disease care system requires an individual to radically alter their lifestyle. To begin an exercise program, change one’s diet, reduce their exposure to toxins, or work on their emotional health all take a considerable amount of effort on the part of the health seeker.
To improve one’s health through chiropractic requires nothing more than scheduling an appointment. We have in our offices the best kept secret in healthcare. Isn’t it time you find out what regular chiropractic care has to offer you and your family? As the only passive method of altering one’s health and well-being, chiropractic offices around the country will be inundated with more clients than they can handle in the coming decade.
Spread the word that chiropractic care is the fastest, the easiest and the most effective way to start off 2010 on the path toward health, happiness and abundant life.
The Georgia Council of Chiropractic, The Georgia Chiropractic Association and Life University, in order to develop a “Unity of Purpose” and a strong working relationship in the state of Georgia, embarked upon a project to develop a common, agreed upon definition of chiropractic. The resulting document was signed by the Presidents of the organizations, and those members of the committee who had worked together to finalize the language.
The document reads as follows:
THE FOUNDATIONAL TENETS OF CHIROPRACTIC
We embrace the concept that chiropractic philosophy, chiropractic science, chiropractic art, chiropractic technique, chiropractic diagnosis and spinal subluxation complex denote areas of ongoing research, continuing intra- and inter-professional dialogue and growing understanding.
We embrace the philosophy that life is intelligent. The human body possesses the inherent potential to maintain itself in a natural state of homeostasis through its innate, inborn intelligence.
We maintain that the science of chiropractic emphasizes the relationship between structure, primarily of the spinal column, and the nervous system, and how that relationship affects function and health. Implicit within this statement are the significance of the nervous system to health and the effect of the spinal subluxation complex upon the whole body.
We hold that all chiropractors should recognize the value of all phases of patient care, including condition-based care, health care and developmental care, as well as both therapeutic and non-therapeutic approaches to patient care. Individual chiropractors may choose to focus on one phase of patient care, one demographic segment of the patient population or one area of chiropractic expertise. They may also choose to become a certified specialist in one particular facet of chiropractic. Such specialization should require advanced, post-graduate education.
We recognize that:
· The primary clinical objective of chiropractic is the enhancement of human health through the adjustment of the subluxation, and that;
· Diagnostic expertise in chiropractic should focus on differential diagnosis of spinal subluxation complex, with other conditions assessed at a level of diagnosis appropriate for chiropractic management, or intra- and inter-professional referral, (referential diagnosis), and that;
· Spinal subluxation complex involves at the least biomechanical and related neurological dysfunction, and that;
· “Adjustment” in chiropractic refers to a specific spinal manipulation directed toward the objective of the reduction or correction of spinal subluxation or extra-spinal subluxation complex .
We recognize that core chiropractic competencies include:
Patient assessment, diagnosis, adjustment, patient education, management, referral, and co-management.
We maintain that chiropractic care incorporates the use of diagnostic and adjustive procedures when indicated, including some or all of the following:
- Patient history
- Physical examination
- Examination for spinal or extra-spinal subluxation complex
- Biomechanical functional assessment
- Laboratory and imaging studies
- Spinal and/or extremity adjustment
- Chiropractic case management
- Spinal Hygiene
- Patient education
- Participation in coordinated care
We maintain that chiropractic care focuses primarily on the chiropractic adjustment. Procedures ancillary to this and the other core chiropractic competencies are and should remain optional components of the practice of chiropractic.
These ancillary procedures may include some or all of the following:
- Spinal/extremity manipulation
- Nutritional supplementation
This list is not intended to be inclusive of all services ancillary to chiropractic that may fall within the scope of chiropractic licensure of a particular jurisdiction.
We hold that the conservative essence of the practice of chiropractic is not consistent with the performance of surgery or prescribing, administering, or dispensing of pharmaceuticals.
We further hold that the full spectrum of chiropractic practice from broad-scope to focused-scope will be defended equally, vigorously and pro-actively in order to protect the rights of all chiropractors to practice in the manner and method they deem appropriate within the law.
Your thoughts and comments are welcome and are very much appreciated.
A new National Geographic special exploring the latest research on how stress may be killing us features Stanford neuroscientist Robert Sapolsky, who has spent decades studying stress in humans and baboons. “Stress: Portrait of a Killer,” a co-production of National Geographic and Stanford University, premiered on Sept. 24 on PBS.
While the focus of the show is stress, the research confirms tenets that, unlike the allopathic medical community, chiropractors have emphasized since the early 1900s. The “educated brain” impacts the “innate” function of the body at the level of the end organ, the tissue cell.
Sapolsky, who holds the John A. and Cynthia Fry Gunn Professorship, is particularly interested in how social standing makes one more or less susceptible to stress. His research in baboons is consistent with findings done by other researchers studying humans and monkeys.
One research study followed a cohort of British civil servants, who have a discrete hierarchical structure as follows:
* Administrative Assistant – Lowest of the low, although the numbers in this grade are slowly going down and most permanent staff are being upgraded to Administrative Officer.
*Administrative Officer – The legions of AOs are what keeps the civil service running.
* Executive Officer – This is considered to be the first management grade. An EO may be responsible for a number of AOs, but in some departments an EO would be the standard grade for staff.
*Higher Executive Officer
*Senior Executive Officer
The findings in this research revealed results strikingly similar to the studies in baboon troops (which have a strict hierarchical social structure) and in studies of colonies of macaque monkeys (who also live in large groups where constant and stressful competition establishes the social hierarchy).
In all three studies, the results were the same. Emotional stress causes those lower on the social ladder to exhibit higher blood pressure, higher levels of atherosclerosis, higher levels of stress hormones, weakened immune system function, additional fat storage and even reduces life span.
In other words, nearly identically matched humans and primates exhibited vastly different physiology, based on their THOUGHTS and FEELINGS. The “educated brain” produced vastly different cellular function, vastly different physiology, vastly different immune response, and different physical tissue cells, despite the fact that all other environmental factors were virtually identical.
As is so often the case, the latest scientific research bears out that the chiropractic view of health is correct: That health is controlled by the brain, all bodily function is regulated by the brain, physical, chemical and emotional stressors are the primary cause of disease in the human body and the educated brain impacts the innate function of the human organism. This is truly “must see TV” for every chiropractor.
Sapolsky is part of a group of researchers appearing in the program, whose collective work is illuminating just how big an impact stress has on our health. The documentary is based partly on Sapolsky’s best-selling book Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers. The broadcast represents the first time National Geographic has joined forces with a major research university to create original programming in the areas of science and technology for television audiences. Randy Bean of Stanford served as an executive producer.
When BJ Palmer developed his father’s discovery into a health care discipline that was separate and distinct from the allopathic model, he did so with the knowledge that treating symptoms rather than cause was misguided. He taught that the logic of diagnosing and labeling symptoms as diseases and treating with chemicals and surgery was flawed. He maintained that finding the true cause of infirmity and reversing the cause was the only true path to health.
He fought to develop a separate and distinct health care system based on addressing the cause of disease rather than treating the symptoms. Considering the period in American history when this was achieved, he accomplished the impossible. He took on organized medicine and the fledgling pharmaceutical industry and offered an alternative. He fought to maintain the integrity of chiropractic from both inside and outside the profession. As a result, chiropractic still exists today as a separate and distinct health care profession..
Chiropractic is not complimentary. It is diametrically opposed to the allopathic model. It is the only true alternative to the drugs, radiation and surgery model of modern industrialized medicine. And an overwhelming body of evidence has proven that BJ Palmer and the chiropractors that followed were correct in their condemnation of this allopathic model and justified in the extreme measures taken to keep the profession separate and distinct.
The Wisdom behind the Model
The basic tenet of chiropractic was that nerve interference disrupts the normal function of the innate intelligence within the body and unless this interference was corrected, normal healthy function could not take place.
This radical view was the cornerstone of chiropractic and it had the profound impact of encouraging chiropractors to reject the prevailing allopathic medical view that man could control the innate intelligence of the body through chemical/surgical intervention. Chiropractic held that the body has this innate ability to adapt, self regulate and heal, which when given the proper environment would produce healthy tissue cells and in turn, a healthy person. BJ Palmer understood that the human body, properly maintained would provide a lifetime of health. We now know that other factors impact the function of the end organ, the tissue cell, beyond the nerve system alone.
What We Know Now
We know that nutrition is a key factor in proper cell function. We now that environmental toxins introduced into the body from drugs, pollution, chemical food additives and other sources negatively affect cell function. We know that one’s emotional state affects cell function. And we know that all disease is a result of improper cell function. Since the brain regulates and controls most cellular function in the body through the nerve system, we can form a more modern tenet of chiropractic which is congruent with the current body of knowledge. That is: Nerve interference is a possible causal factor in all disease.
It turns out that health is no more mysterious than maintaining your car. Regular maintenance (exercise and chiropractic care) combined with proper fuel (a healthy diet of natural foods and clean pure water) along with additives when needed like coolant and brake fluid (whole food nutritional supplements) and avoiding environmental contaminants such as dirt clogging your air filter or foreign matter in your gas tank (avoiding drugs, chemical food additives, toxins in air, water, etc.) results in a lifetime of useful service. It really is that simple.
One chiropractic leader recently put it this way: Regular low cost, low risk interventions such as regular exercise, proper nutrition, chiropractic care to keep your nerve system functioning properly and stress reduction (applied consistently throughout life) allows you to avoid high risk interventions such as drugs, radiation and surgery, except in emergencies.
The Toxic Lie
Yet somehow the majority of Americans have been convinced by “scientific experts” that health is a great mystery and we need highly trained scientists to dictate to us, using ever more elaborate tests and evaluations, what the body needs. And what we need are chemicals. And we need them in ever larger quantities for an ever growing list of labeled diseases like: ADD, ADHD, Restless Leg Syndrome, Osteopenia, Erectile Dysfunction, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Peripheral Artery Disease, Alzheimer’s Disease, Fybromyalgia, Bi-Polar Disorder, Depression, etc.
And these are just the advanced cases. We need cold remedies, cough medicines, pain relievers, antacids, cholesterol lowering drugs, blood pressure medications and the like to survive between doctor visits for these other, more serious “conditions”.
The public has become convinced that they need doctors and chemists to develop and refine these chemicals and adjust the dosage. And they now need ever more expensive health insurance to pay for these chemicals and the experts that dispense and monitor them.
This is a lie, a very toxic lie. BJ Palmer left a great legacy. His legacy is an organized, licensed body of health care providers that do not rely on chemical intervention. Those that sought his wisdom, adopted his teachings and held his skepticism of organized medicine are now in a unique position to change the world, more specifically to save the world. To save us from the madness of the pharmaceutical fantasy, to save us from bankrupting our people at the hands of the robber barons of modern medicine and health insurance who are medicating the human species into oblivion through disease mongering and fear tactics.
But we need the help and support OF and to offer reciprocal help and support TO those that are championing the other requisite components of the aforementioned recipe for avoiding high risk interventions. We cannot do it alone. Chiropractic care alone is not a health care solution. It only becomes a health care solution when it is combined with education on how the body functions and honest, accurate, non-prescriptive information on the other components necessary to regain and maintain health.
Chiropractic needs to combine and align to grow and prosper, to combine adjustments with information regarding the other facets of the chiropractic lifestyle that promote health. We must align our messaging with others that share our view. And there are many who now share our view. We must combine our power with others in the profession who share our passion. Align our power with the power of others outside the profession who share our vision and stand in opposition to the allopathic model.
The list of groups that have a philosophy that is congruent with chiropractic is long and prosperous:
The natural/organic food industry
The whole food supplement industry
The exercise industry
The personal development industry
The ergonomic products industry
The environmentally friendly products industry
All organized religious and spiritual practitioners
All meditation practices including TM, Yoga, Qi Gong, etc.
Along with a growing number of organizations which exist to expose the harm being inflicted by the food and pharmaceutical industries and the corruption of the FDA that is charged with protecting consumers.
There exists an opportunity to serve as a very valuable ally to those with health promoting products or messages. The position of trusted health care provider carries considerable appeal, particularly in today’s fast paced, and media saturated economy.
The average consumer is bombarded with nearly 3000 commercial messages a day. The appeal of having a message conveyed or supported by a trusted, licensed health professional (or their staff) is invaluable, in order to have it stand out in the crowd. If that message is one that is of value to you and your practice members, by assisting in its dissemination, you are helping your practice members achieve health, elevating the importance you play in their lives and increasing the likelihood they will fully experience the benefits of your service and be more likely to stay and refer. Help others spread their message of health and they in turn can help spread the chiropractic message.
We don’t have to become mattress salesmen or vitamin distributors. But we do need to cooperate with these other industries for the common good of those we serve.
Let’s Change the World, One Spine at a Time
So here we are, with more momentum than has ever existed to support the principle and philosophy that is chiropractic. It is time to combine and align. The chiropractic lifestyle is health. It is life fully expressed. Tell the story effectively and you will never want for more practice members again. Help those that support health to tell their story and you will never want for more practice members again. Give your practice members the gift of health and the gift of life and you will never want for more practice members again. You have been empowered with a great legacy and a destiny as yet unfulfilled. You have the power to change the world and impact the future of mankind. Use it wisely for you and humanity
Dr. Elaine Armantrout, PT, DSc, ECS, was joined by 625 physical therapists and physical therapist assistants, members of the Washington State Physical Therapy Association, to lobby legislators in Olympia for removal of the spinal manipulation prohibition in the state.
Senate Bill SB5230 would allow PTs to perform spinal manipulation. It would also remove the requirement that PTs must show evidence of adequate education and training in spinal manipulation and submit to the secretary an affidavit that includes evidence of adequate education and training in spinal manipulation for all PTs graduating in 2009 and later. The bill would also allow Washington State PTs to advertise spinal manipulation and mobilization. Dr. Armantout states: “It’s been proven, in studies, that spinal manipulation is the most effective treatment for patients to get better faster for neck pain and low back pain”.
Here is the video that appears on the Seattle Times website:
Fortunately for chiropractors that detect and correct subluxations, this poses no concern. PTs performing “chiropractic adjustments” is specifically excluded in the language of the bill. Thankfully we have several national groups that have worked long and hard to maintain the specific language of chiropractic in the scope of practice laws in the individual states, including but not limited to: the ICA, FSCO, and WCA . Many state associations have been equally as diligent.
With more than 187 doctorate physical therapy degree programs in the US beginning to graduate doctors of physical therapy, chiropractors who have been content to document and manage soft tissue injuries for PI attorneys and managed care organizations are going to quickly see their practices seriously impacted, not just in Washington, but across the nation.
Let’s face facts. These new doctors, DPTs, are much better aligned to co-manage back and neck pain with their MD/DO brethren than chiropractors. The recent inroads many PI / pain based practices have been making establishing referral arrangements with MD/DOs will be much less attractive when they can now refer to a Doctor of PT for both rehab and manipulation.
As we reported last year, the folks behind the Necks911 campaign (who also take credit for derailing the FSU chiropractic college effort) are actively preaching their anti-chiropractic rhetoric to doctorate PT program students and to practicing PTs as continuing education classes.
The PT associations have already begun to cite “concerns raised of injury resulting from manipulation of the upper cervical spine. By contrast, within the physical therapy profession studies have been published on effective methods for addressing neck pain by manipulating the thoracic spine, where less risk exists”.
Get it: Safe, effective spinal manipulation by a member of your traditional, allopathic medical team good. Chiropractic bad.
Thankfully there are those that have remained true to chiropractic by maintaining this sacred trust as a separate and distinct profession with separate and distinct language. It is time for like minded chiropractors that provide chiropractic adjustments for the purpose of correcting vertebral subluxations to rally together and let the public know what we do, why we do it and what we don’t do. Chiropractic as episodic treatment for low back / neck pain is no longer a viable long term business model.
Vertebral subluxation correction for the purpose of allowing the maximum expression of life and health in the human body remains the exclusive domain of the chiropractor. Our vitalistic roots, our 113 year history of opposing: the overuse of prescription drugs, mass vaccination and toxins in the water and food supply along with our patient satisfaction ratings that are unmatched in the healing arts are exactly what the public is searching for. There has never been a better time to tell our story to the masses and get them under chiropractic care. Efforts like this should serve as a wake up call to chiropractors nationwide that the time is now to better define what we do and take our message to the public. I’m all in. Care to join me?