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Ep. 57 – Mistrust in medical science

There seems to be a general lack of belief in science, especially as it related to medical treatments. Why did this happen? Dr. Chet will give you his thoughts on this edition of Straight Talk on Health

Welcome to Straight Talk on Health. I’m your host Dr. Chet Zelasko. Straight Talk on Health is a joint production with WGVU in Grand Rapids MI. I examine the world of health. Nutrition. Exercise. Diet. Supplementation. If there’s something new, I look at the science behind them, and let you know whether it’s real or not. You can check out other things that I do on my website drchet.com and sign up for my free emails.

We have reached a time when people no longer want to believe in science. The more problematic issue is a lack of belief in science related to health. The question is why? There have always been conspiracy stories about cancer and heart disease but nothing like this.

If I could pick one moment in time that was the beginning of step backward, it would be the research by Andrew Wakefield on childhood vaccinations. His discredited research, which has been subsequently removed from the journal, gave enough ammunition for people to believe the autism and childhood vaccinations were related. People fail to acknowledge any of the research after that which has clearly demonstrated that the two events are not related. However, we have entered a period of time where people choose to believe in what they “feel” about something, rather than to learn enough about it to understand it.

The depth of the lack of belief in health-related science could be, at least, in part, maybe mostly, explained by the COVID pandemic. Not having faced that type of virulent virus in several generations, people were not ready for the medical and subsequent governmental response. Go back and look at the pandemic surrounding the misnamed Spanish Flu. There is nothing we did today that wasn’t done then. Limiting contact with other people, including family members, as well as being forced to wear masks when they did go into public spaces. That gave people more time to peruse social media platforms. That gave pseudo-health experts, actual health experts, and people just seeking attention time to promote of variety of opinions on mask wearing, treatments that they claimed worked for addressing COVID infections, and then finally questioning the vaccination itself.

I can remember reading more research on mask wearing than I ever would have. Some of it was legit but most were misusing published data on the spread of infections in medical settings with a variety of types of masks, specifically the N 95. The focus seemed to be on paper masks that had been typically used in medical facilities including surgical suites for decades. I saw more demonstrations of people inhaling smoke of some sort and videoing how it just flowed through every type of mask, from cloth to the most common paper surgical masks. “Masks don't work!” Became the mantra for just about everyone. But smoke is not a virus.

What surprised me was that no one seemed to acknowledge that when one exhales, moisture is also exhaled. And while it's true that the gaps between cloth or paper fibers were large enough to let the virus go through, nobody acknowledged for the attraction of water molecules for the virus while exhaling. Maybe that would have been enough for a majority of the virus to stick to it while some could still escape the sides but it would still provide at least some barrier. To my knowledge, no one examined that in any research study that I could find.

The other part of that mask issue is that people felt that it was damaging to individuals because they couldn't see the entire face of the person they were interacting with. I can report anecdotally that I had no problem wearing masks, it didn't screw up my psyche because I couldn't see the entire face of the person I was talking to, and, in some cases maybe that's actually a blessing. My grandson went to a school where they were required to wear masks about as well as kindergarten and 1st graders can. They didn't seem to come away disturbed in any way that I could tell. There were no great celebrations when the mask requirement was lifted in schools. I also would add there were no closures due to COVID outbreaks in the entire elementary school he attended, Pre-K through 6th grade, for the entire time they were required to wear masks.

Let's turn to the pseudo experts and believe you me, most were more pseudo then experts. People claimed that they had derived the right combinations of nutrients and in some cases medications that stopped COVID in its tracks. Because every study about COVID was published in some journal somewhere, a lot of, should I say, less than rigorous studies were published. I remember a physician who claimed they were treating patients, in fact over 300 patients in a row, with the combination of nutrients saw all of them recover from COVID with no hospitalizations at all. The only problem was that this was prior to accurate testing for COVID. There is no way of knowing whether any of the patients that showed up in their office actually had COVID.

Another physician claimed to use a combination of vitamin D, vitamin C and budenoside inhaler, a drug typically used for asthma. When searching through the data, what I did find was that the French had been using that approach for several months with some success before the epidemic really blossomed there. To claim that it was an approach that you had discovered was less than honest to say the least. Today, for those who do catch the COVID virus and get a substantial infection, budenoside is part of a typical treatment approach.

Nothing got more attention from attention grabbing physicians and social media then ivermectin. As you are probably well aware, Ivermectin is a drug that treats parasites. I could go on and on through the stories of people getting the type that are used to treat horses and all of that but let me just summarize it this way. In every randomized clinical trial, comparing a treatment pattern that uses ivermectin with one that does not, ivermectin has not shown to be beneficial in any way to lessen the length or the symptoms associated with COVID.

And finally we come to the COVID vaccination issue. Before the vaccine was ever introduced, there was already a groundswell of pseudo-experts saying that no one should ever get that vaccination. I watched video after video, some with physician/lawyers who were speaking in any microphone they could get in front of, explaining why no one should ever get “the jab” as many called it.

Bull. That a vaccine was available in 8 months or so is nothing but amazing. Yes, they used different techniques than before. But there is nothing harmful about it for a variety of reasons—all of which are ignored. Is it perfect? No vaccine is. In that you have a consistently mutating virus is why there are continuous updates. What we have seen with this virus is something we’ve rarely seen: symptoms that last years with the appropriate name “long haulers.” In that it happens in people who were not vaccinated as well in some that were, people question “What’s the point of the vaccine? Before the vaccine was introduced, the US was averaging over 20k deaths per week. With over 70% of the population vaccinated at least once since November 2020, the deaths per week has dropped to 1300 souls per week from all causes—and still, about 2% are attributed to COVID infections.

I get why it’s easy to be suspicious of science. It’s hard to believe in what we don’t understand. Let me leave you with this thought. In the 25 years I’ve been working with people, everyone who decided to do things the “Natural way” by ignoring treatment has died sooner rather than later. Do your homework and if something sounds too good to be true, it usually is. I’ll keep doing what I do to separate fact from fiction for you. Thanks for listening but we’re out of time. This is Dr. Chet Zelasko saying health is a choice. Choose wisely today and every day.

Dr. Chet Zelasko is a scientist, speaker, and author. Dr. Chet has a Ph.D. and MA in Exercise Physiology and Health Education from Michigan State University and a BS in Physical Education from Canisius College. He’s certified by the American College of Sports Medicine as a Health and Fitness Specialist, belongs to the American Society of Nutrition, and has conducted research and been published in peer-reviewed journals. You can find him online at drchet.com.
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