Dr. Moshe Dekel, MD, who specializes in Holistic Medicine, was kind enough to appear at the Herban Marketplace in Beaufort this weekend for a lecture focusing on digestion. As a Botanical physician, Dr. Dekel makes use of nutrition, herbs and homeopathy to treat patients. This approach is contrary to Allopathic doctors who prescribe pharmaceuticals (prescription drugs).
Rise of Commercial Medicine
American preference for pharmaceuticals began in 1910. More drugs were becoming available, and the Carnegie Foundation pushed the Flexner Report to Congress, asserting that the only medical schools that should be supported by the government were allopathic schools. “That was the kiss of death for the botanical industry,” states Dr. Dekel. Now, the average 65-year-old American is using about 6-10 prescription drugs. “Western medicine has moved from the botanicals and the natural into this realm by design. Pharmaceuticals today are probably the number one business in the United States.” Commercials are fifty percent advertisements for prescription drugs. Only two countries in the world, the U.S. and New Zealand allow for these drug companies to advertise to the public. Unfortunately for the misguided consumer, conventional medicine only decreases symptoms; it does not fix the problem. Furthermore, multiple medications cause increased side effects, but many doctors prescribe more medication in an effort to alleviate these problems.
Return to Holistic Medicine: Raw food, Hydrochloric Acid, Probiotics
“This is one of my goals- to help my patients actually get rid of these drugs,” says Dr. Dekel in response. In holistic medicine, symptoms are seen as messengers from the body. By fixing the foundation or cause of the problem, we avoid addiction to dangerous pain medications. To get rid of many ailments, he looks for the individual source- problems start in the gut.
The gut can become inflamed and start trouble in other parts of the body. Instead of prescription medication, Dr. Dekel tells his patients to fix their gut by avoiding processed foods that are hard to digest: “In holistic medicine, we say we dig our grave with our teeth,” Dr. Dekel commented on our widely-accepted American diet. Blood samples were taken from people who eat raw food vs. people who eat cooked foods to compare the number of white blood cells in their bodies. White blood cell count is important because they function as our immune defense. The people who ate cooked food had an elevated count of white blood cells as their bodies went into defense trying to compensate. Our bodies are also being over-stressed trying to build enzymes for digestion because we don’t eat enough of the source- fresh fruit and vegetables. This leaves undigested foods in our systems.
We also do not have enough hydrochloric acid (HCL) in our digestive systems. HCL is necessary to sterilize the food we eat, protecting us from parasites, bacteria and fungus. It also denatures the proteins, unraveling them to get them ready for the enzymes to work on so they can cleave themselves to the amino acids (the building blocks of proteins). Our production of HCL decreases with age, and we make about zero acid by age seventy five. We should not absorb anything through our gut larger than three amino acids joined together (tripeptide). If anything larger crosses over, our bodies will launch an immune response and produce antibodies against the intruder to protect us (Leaky Gut Syndrome). If we don’t have enough HCL as food moves through the stomach, undigested protein will rot and cause inflammation with the following symptoms: heartburn, bloating, increased gas, constipation and diarrhea.
Seventy percent of our immune system capabilities is in our gut. If our gut is already inflamed, the body starts to reinforce it with that remaining thirty percent of our immune system, leaving the rest of our body exposed to serious ailments like cancer. The gut proceeds to create a lot of toxicity, stressing the liver and the kidneys. Constipation is related to cancer because the body is struggling to detoxify!
How to prevent inflammation:
The most natural prevention is to eat gluten-free and also fermented food, which is the only type of food that does not require HCL to digest because it is already loaded with probiotics (good bacteria). Eat the right foods, drink enough water, take enough fiber, and get the right enzymes (HCL & probiotics) to prevent constipation. Like babies, adults should ideally move their bowels after every meal, but once a day would be adequate for most people. “On a daily basis, we need to support our allies by digesting probiotics. I don’t leave home without my probiotics, HCL and enzymes. If I eat out, I always have it in my pocket,” says Dr. Dekel.
For more information, please visit the website of Dr. Moshe Dekel, MD: http://drdekel.com/