Last year at the National Holistic Nutrition Conference I had the opportunity to chill with the silver fox himself, Elson Hass. Now if Elson Haas is a silver fox, than Dr. Michael Murray is just a fox. Seriously. He is one handsome and healthy man. My guess was that he rang in at around 42. I was a full decade off. Now I don’t tell you this to undermine his credibility. If anyone deserves the utmost credibility in the field of natural medicine it is Dr. Michael Murray. It is simply a whole lot easier to follow the health advice of healthy looking people and he embodies this supremely. Having scientific data to back up his claims is simply low-glycemic icing on that protein-rich cake.
This year at the National Holistic Nutrition Conference, I had the opportunity to chat with Dr. Murray. If you have ever studied nutrition or naturopathic medicine, you most certainly know who this man is. He quite literally, wrote the book on Natural Medicine. He actually wrote many of them including the Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine, the 900 page bible better known as the Encyclopedia of Healing Foods and his most recent aptly titled “What The Drug Companies Won’t Tell You, And What Your Doctor Doesn’t Know”.
I got myself a copy from the man himself and it is amazing. A must read for anyone and everyone- doctors, patients, you and I. Dr. Murray’s brand of nutrition education is so solidly awesome because he backs it up with studies. When he was in naturopathic college, he decided that if this whole natural healing thing was for real, it should stand up to proper scientific study. Low and behold, it does. Every time. And Dr. Murray has and shares the data to support the claims made in his books.
Dr. Murray got into natural medicine for the same reason most of us do, because of personal experience- both his own and his father’s.
Though he no longer sees patients, he did practice for 15 years and realized that to get success with his patients, five main issues needed to be addressed:
- Lifestyle (including sleep and exercise)
- Medication (He explained, and I agree, that many people need medication so that they can support themselves until they can being to heal)
Now, what I found interesting is that all too often in the way we address ill health in our society is that we turn this list upside down. We start with the meds, than pop a few more pills in the form of supplements and the last thing we address is attitude, and perhaps related to that is our own personal responsibility. The key then is to remove the obstacles to heal and that greatest obstacle, in many cases is simply our attitude.
With this perspective, as Dr. Murray went on to explain, the patient population seems to have been mislead into thinking the pill will solve it all. As he states in his new book, if Prozac, as a side effect, increases suicide risk by anywhere from 6-20%, is that helping from the root cause?
What Dr. Murray, thoroughly illustrates through cases studies, scientific studies, and statistics is how irrational these drugs are as a solution to our health. They may be an suitable immediate coping mechanism but I would hope medical doctors would agree, that they are certainly not a long-term solution for building health. Though many of them are needed and people do benefit, all too often we are replacing pills and procedures for what should ultimately be our own change in attitude and action.
Check out details on Dr. Murray’s new book here