Welcome to Suburban Farmacy.
Our goal is to share our discoveries on the road to finding and growing food and medicinal plants on our suburban homestead.
Why, you might ask, would we want to grow medicine instead of getting it from the pharmacy? Don’t we believe in medicine? What’s wrong with us?
I think the best way to answer that line of questioning is to share a few stories. First, when modern medicines make sense we absolutely believe in them. But we also feel medicine is highly over prescribed. It’s a panacea. A quick fix.
Years ago I had indigestion. It was getting pretty bad and would probably qualify as acid reflux “disease”. I hate that nearly everything is now a disease or a syndrome. Did you know, if you can define something a disease, syndrome or condition then you get funding. Drug companies can offer something for it. Insurance companies can get in the mix. Basically a “disease” means more money for all the big corporations and less money for you when paying for all the drugs to “treat” it.
Now, I went to my doctor and he asked a few questions, did a couple of tests and prescribed me medication to combat this disease. It was pretty much prescription strength Prilosec. In fact I could have just bought Prilosec OTC and taken 2 pills at a time to have the same dosage. At no time did he mention any downside to taking this medication and, like I’m guessing most people, I didn’t read the microscopic fine print that came with the prescription.
After taking this for almost two years I decided to see if I could wean myself off of it. So, I cut my portion size down when eating. I eliminated many of the fried foods I enjoyed. Next thing you know I dropped a few pounds (I’m not overweight to begin with but could have stood to lose a few) and found I didn’t need to take the pills any longer.
So, instead of some common sense advice he could have suggested first, he went right for the drugs. After being off the pills for awhile I found the following: “Long-term treatment with Protonix may make it harder for your body to absorb vitamin B-12, resulting in a deficiency of this vitamin. In long-term rodent studies, pantoprazole was carcinogenic and caused rare types of gastrointestinal tumors.” (taken from: http://www.rxlist.com/protonix-side-effects-drug-center.htm) Pantoprazole is what I had been prescribed.
Yeah. Carcinogenic. Deficiency of B12. (low B-12 results in dementia type symptoms). Thanks doc.
This same doc also told me I was going to have to go on cholesterol meds soon. Instead, at that time, I changed mostly just one thing in my diet. I only eat meat (beef, pork, chicken, etc.) when it is raised without growth hormones and antibiotic free AND when it eats a historically natural diet. Using beef as an example, cows are ruminants. They eat grass. Not grains. Not corn. Not any of the other stuff that factory feed lots give them.
I purchased only direct from farmers who I knew how they were raising their animals. When eating out, if the restaurant didn’t feature this type of meat, I would simply select a vegetarian dish instead. Next check up and my cholesterol numbers had dropped substantially. I could go into the good/bad cholesterol values in grain fed vs. grass fed beef but if you’re really interested in more on this topic many other sites do a great job of covering this material. You can start with http://www.eatwild.com/basics.html
Now some might ask why I don’t just go see a different doctor. You see, the funny thing is that my doctor does heavily promote these very values I believe in yet when it comes to the medical “industry” he isn’t given the time to spend with the patients due to the sheer numbers he has to see according to the HMO rules. He also, like most doctors, has been indoctrinated into “write a prescription”. In talking with others I heard most doctors just go right for the drugs too. I’d be trading one “pusher” for another.
I’ve been reading and finding out that many of our drugs are derived from fairly common plants. Many other traditional treatments also come from plants you can grow in your yard or find on a simply walk in a prairie or in the woods. After trying a few and finding they actually work I’ve been moving towards growing our food and medicine as much as possible on our own land. Knowing how and where our food comes from and treating minor medical issues on our own gives you a very good sense of self sufficiency. I have no delusion that a serious injury or illness requires professional attention, but I believe that a proactive approach helps lessen the chance of contracting something serious.
The postings on this site will reflect our experiences in food, eating and medicating all derived (at least partially) from our own yard. We encourage anyone interested in a cleaner and healthier lifestyle to do your own research and discover what our ancestors already knew but most of us have yet to learn. Nature provides.