Playing Doctor?

For those questions and discussions on the McDougall program that don’t seem to fit in any other forum.

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Playing Doctor?

Postby stoumi » Sun Jan 29, 2012 8:06 am

I won't say my wife has been skeptical since changing my diet and my lifestyle when it comes to what I put into my body. I am completely on board with this WOE, while my wife has her vices, but she has agreed to follow me when it comes to how we eat. She has experienced some of the benefits recently after participating in the 12-day program (The McDougall Program) with my aunt and myself. Thankfully both did well and my wife has now dropped about 7 pounds in just over 4 weeks. She is excited and thrilled that she now weighs less than when she gave birth to our son 6 years ago.

I saw my doctor last week to compare blood screenings from July, 2011 and December 2011. I wrote about it here, but I left feel less than thrilled with his opinions, comments and recommendation. My wife just had her blood screening and in some cases her numbers were better than mine. One number that stuck out was her level of Vitamin D, which was '15' compared to mine at '23'. While my doctor prescribed 50,000 IU a week (one pill a week) her "doctor" (Rn Ms Fnp) only told her to take 1000 IU a week.

I am beginning to think I am not in the "best hands" when it comes to my doctor, especially in light of recent events. My wife is concern and reminds me I am not a doctor and that he knows what's best for me, the Vitamin D issue is a hot one with me right now, since everything I have research says my level is "normal" and I should not be taking such a large dose. Unfortunately not being trained in all things medication and nutrition, the answers I get usually come as a result of something I read here or linked to on the Internet. Do I now gather up some support evidence as to WHY I shouldn't be taking this large of a dose of Vitamin D and go back and discuss it with my doctor? Deal with it for 3 months and see what my Vitamin D level does or stop it completely?

Anyone been in a similar situation?

Here is a "review" of my doctor and while I did not write it, it's exactly what I am currently experiencing." This could be a patterns of his....hmmm.

He seemed disappointed that I was healthy and that my cholesterol level had gone down. He got very argumentative about the risk of taking anti cholesterol drugs which I didn't need anyway. He was offended when I asked how well he knew another doctor he was recommending for a different procedure.

He set up a second unnecessary appointment at additional cost to both me and the insurance company. He prescribed expensive pills for my " vitamin D deficiency " when just some sunshine and over the counter pills did the trick as evidenced by my next exam a year later by another doctor.

Very unpleasant, hard to talk to, obnoxious. !!!
Last edited by stoumi on Sat Mar 10, 2012 10:29 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Playing Doctor?

Postby Kiki » Sun Jan 29, 2012 8:44 am

Stoumi, I empathize with your recent troubles with your doctor. Sometimes it seems that their main agenda is not your good health.

I think your relationship with your doctor might be a bit skewed. After all, it's your body, and you decide what to put in it. Your doctor just offers advice. He has the medical knowledge, but only you know how you feel. And, if something were to go wrong, you are the one who would suffer, not him. Ultimately, you are the only guardian of your good health.

Personally, I would find a doctor who understands his role in the patient/doctor relationship better, and also take a better look at how I use my doctor's services. Putting my health in someone else's hands is very uncomfortable for me.

Vitamin D3 is an over-the-counter supplement because it's not considered harmful even in relatively large doses, and the FDA thinks the average person can make this decision for him/herself without the need of a doctor. You strike me as above average. :) Plus, you've already done a bit of research on the subject, maybe more than your doctor. I wouldn't underestimate your own abilities.

Just my unqualified 2 cents.
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Re: Playing Doctor?

Postby sweetfruitlover » Sun Jan 29, 2012 9:17 am

I always like to keep in mind that I am the general contractor of my health. I use various health practitioners when it feels appropriate, but I'm in charge and make all the final decisions. If I see a doctor who doesn't get this, I don't usually stick with that person. Last year we changed insurance at work and I got a new primary health practitioner. I told her that my cholesterol had been high in the past and I was now eating in a way that I expected to bring it down, so I wanted to check my lipid profile. She agreed, and said something like "if it's still high, I can't allow you to not take medication for it." I replied, as nicely as I could, that it was my body and my decision. That of course I valued and wanted her advice, but the decision about whether or not to go on prescription meds would be mine to make. She heard me, nodded, and seemed okay with that. So I've stuck with her and so far so good.
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Re: Playing Doctor?

Postby Pacificfords » Sun Jan 29, 2012 9:30 am

stoumi wrote: My wife is concern and reminds me I am not a doctor and that he knows what's best for me,


That is not necessarily true. Doctors are human. I have found in this past year that I no longer trust a majority of doctors to do what is best for me. It led me to research and find people I trust. In doing that, I have improved a health situation that wasn't supposed to improve. If I had listened to my doctors, it is likely I would be highly medicated and much sicker by now. You have to research, find people you trust and take things into your own hands to some degree. I don't pretend to know more than my doctors, but I certainly don't trust everything they say or do as being right. I know there is a TON of information on this board about Vit D... just having your level is enough to get you started. Search and read the information and then make a choice based on that. I don't leave anything in the hands of my doctors anymore because their motive has not always been in my best interest. ;) Good luck...
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Re: Playing Doctor?

Postby shell-belle » Sun Jan 29, 2012 9:56 am

I have a lot of respect for doctors but I don't totally trust them and I always do my own research. Back in 1993 I had an ENT doc whom I did not have a good feeling about. He was arrogant, dismissive and I just did not have confidence in him. I stuck with him - against my better judgement - and regret not leaving him sooner than I finally did. In Oct on 2010 my husband got railroaded into getting stents in his coronaries by his then cardiologist. 2 weeks after the procedure I went with my husband to a follow up appointment and realized this cardio doc was not giving good care & was difficult to talk to. For a number of reasons, I did not trust or like him. I did some research and we found the woman cardio doc my husband now sees and we both love her. I say if a doctor is unpleasant, hard to talk to and/or obnoxious it's time to find a new one. Trust your gut instinct - if you don't have a good feeling about a doctor, get another one. They are working for YOU - or they should be! Life is should - your relationship with your doctor needs to one where you feel good about your interactions.
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Re: Playing Doctor?

Postby didi » Sun Jan 29, 2012 10:28 am

kiki we don't know what the FDA is thinking. Lobbyists are responsible for having supplements classified as foods and not drugs so they do not require testing, regulation or standardization. When You buy a supplement you 'don't even know if you are getting the amount that is on the label. The only time they will step in if is people die from a supplement as in the case of contaminated tryptophan some years back. Exactly what the food part of the food and drug name is supposed to mean, I do not know. Special interests are in charge of the FDA as witnessed by the revolving door of lobbyists and execs of big business being appointed to top decision making positions in charge of the very companies they once worked for and usually end up working for again. Who is going to kill the goose that lays the golden egg?

Dr. McDougall is a skeptic. Be the same.

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Re: Playing Doctor?

Postby shell-belle » Sun Jan 29, 2012 10:29 am

mistake--sorry I meant to write:
Life is SHORT....
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Re: Playing Doctor?

Postby Kiki » Sun Jan 29, 2012 10:55 am

didi wrote:Dr. McDougall is a skeptic. Be the same.

didi


Thanks, Didi. From what I see, I'm already more skeptical than Dr. McD.
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Re: Playing Doctor?

Postby frozenveg » Sun Jan 29, 2012 11:07 am

I agree with most of your respondents here. I'm not sure why you & your wife are seeing different doctors--is yours a specialist of some kind? I only have ever seen a family practice doctor, so DH and I see see the same family practice doctor. She now nags him to try what I've been doing!

But back to the point. Doctors are a business. If you are not happy with, let's say, a car repair business, you will probably search around to find one that you are more comfortable with. You won't go to a florist, but you will find another mechanic. Find another mechanic for your machine, one that you feel you can trust--there should be some more out there.
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Re: Playing Doctor?

Postby kittyadventures » Sun Jan 29, 2012 11:10 am

Also there are good doctors out there. You just have to do a bit of looking around.

And a good clue is... Does your doctor look healthy. Ask him about his diet and exercise program for himself.

If he is not willing to try diet as a first step to getting healthier..nthen you need to look elsewhere.
Who knew an Apple a day, really would keep the Doctor away!
"Be the change you want to see in the world"--Gandhi.

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Re: Playing Doctor?

Postby Melinda » Sun Jan 29, 2012 11:17 am

I don't get this whole Vitamin D thing - for centuries people have been muddling along without Vit. D testing and now all of a sudden everyone is deficient and needs huge amounts. I'm glad my Doc doesn't advocate anything trendy like that - he doesn't trust supplements at all. (but he says he doesn't know how I can live without ice cream - I guess that is one of his favourites!) I feel very fortunate that he is conservative with his care.
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Re: Playing Doctor?

Postby stoumi » Sun Jan 29, 2012 12:26 pm

First, regardless of a doctor's bedside manner I have the utmost respect for the training and years of work they put in to get where they are, regardless of their field of expertise. As for my doctor, "Does he look healthy?" Well, if I were his doctor, I would probably tell him to lose weight, he is heavy set for his age (I would guess lat 60s). That was the first thing that struck a chord with me, the fact he is telling me to lose weight, when looking at him, you can tell he is not a spitting image himself.

I can actually look past that fact, since he is responsible for his health, not me. My wife had this doctor as her personal doctor as well, but she didn't like him for various reasons and now visits the family nurse practitioner in the same office. She loves the woman and her bedside manner when it comes to diagnosing her problems and prescribing her medication. The prescribing medication is MY issue since I think she would ween herself off the crap she is taking. Again, only my wife can chose to do that, not me. I do comment on it all the time and hopefully this change in diet will see her taking less and less of the medication as she gets further along with this WOE.

Pacificfords, you are correct, I mistyped. I am in charge of my health, my doctor gives me recommendations. But that goes back to the original question. I am quite skeptical about what he tells me, which leads me to research, but we all know how much bad information is available on the Internet. I do respect the writings and information from many of the doctors, who's names continue to pop on these forums. Unfortunately explaining to my wife I got this information from Dr. So-and-So off the Internet becomes challenging. Thus it can become information overload and I end up with too much information to sift through to make a good decision. This isn't just the Vitamin D, but that is what got me thinking differently recently about my doctor and the last visit I had.
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Re: Playing Doctor?

Postby GeoffreyLevens » Sun Jan 29, 2012 12:53 pm

...for centuries people have been muddling along without Vit. D testing and now all of a sudden everyone is deficient and needs huge amounts.

Two things:

The so long as people live long enough to reproduce and their children live long enough to reproduce, "Nature" is happy. Muddling along is probably about right. Based on all available research at this time, if Vitamin D had been widely supplemented to maintain normal levels, the 1918 influenza pandemic would likely not have occurred or at least been much much less severe. There is much more but you get the idea

The other is everyone is not deficient, just a great many. And not all need huge amounts, some need a lot, some need a moderate amount, some need tiny amounts. And obviously some fairly large segment of the population needs none beyond what they are already getting. And that is where the current "mania" for testing comes from, so sort out who is who.
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Re: Playing Doctor?

Postby shell-belle » Sun Jan 29, 2012 5:10 pm

Melinda - the average life span 100 years ago was not quite 50 years. Now people are living longer and have more time to deplete their vitamin D levels. In fact many women did not even go through menopause in the past generations because they were dead before age 50.
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Re: Playing Doctor?

Postby Melinda » Sun Jan 29, 2012 8:31 pm

My aunt is 95, and while she eats meat, has never drank milk or eaten much cheese - which are suppplemented with Vit. D. Also she has never taken Vit. D. I am with Dr. Mcdougall on this - I don't trust the levels set for Vitamin D - I really think it is just another trend.
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