Anti-Inflammatory Diet

All health care starts with diet. My recommendations for a healthy diet are here:
Anti-Inflammatory Diet and Lifestyle.
There are over 190 articles on diet, inflammation and disease on this blog
(find topics using search [upper left] or index [lower right]), and
more articles by Prof. Ayers on Suite101 .

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

What If Medicine Was Scientific?

A view of the future of medicine, if the health of each patient was the highest priority.

2020 Somebody read the biomedical literature and decided to save a few bucks on the national healthcare system.

It has been a couple of years since everyone began favoring their right butt cheek. The “BioMed” subcutaneous, WiFi, microchip implants were controversial, but the economic argument was compelling. In the first year after the BioMed became mandatory and implantation accompanied every office visit, the expenditure on medical treatment in the US dropped by 10%. There was a lot of complaining about what a literal “pain in the butt” the prevention program was, but the prodding of the BioMed got results.

Once subQed, the BioMed enforced a simple dietary and exercise regimen. Violation of the regimen produced progressively more severe itching of the cheek, until the real “pain in the ass” set in. Surcease from this sorrow was Poetic in its justice. Sufferers could pay for temporary relief in conveniently marked toll stalls, called “Craigs.” There was a certain amount of public opprobrium associated with use of these facilities, but they brought relief. Those compelled to use the stalls complained of being “Idahoed.”

The prescribed diet was high in omega-3 oils and complex carbohydrates, but proscribed large amounts of starch, sugar and other hyperglycemic carbohydrates. Ten minutes of daily solar exposure (vitamin D) on the cheeks was monitored by the BioMed and “mooning” was replaced in the vernacular by “BMing.” Twenty minutes of daily exercise was enforced based on the BioMed’s analysis of physiological (pulse, blood pressure, blood sugar) and physical (GPS, accelerometer) measurements. Sustained, sedentary activity was not possible.

The BioMed provided identity verification for each patient and every datum on the patient was accessible by any medical official. Absolute privacy was provided by a variant of Apple’s DRM. Prescriptions for each patient were verified at purchase and were confirmed by access to a wireless expert system. Correct timing of medication was enforced by BioMed reminders. Compliance soared.

In the second year, 2 BM, office visits began to plummet. Doctors in private practice saw their incomes drop by 20% and there was already talk of a surplus of medical staff. Prices of the stocks of the major food processors began to drop as people shifted away from fast food, common vegetable oils, corn and soy products, and began to purchase more local meat and produce. Breastfeeding gained new popularity spurred by the introduction of the BioMedNip, a nipple implant to enhance the health of newborns.

The third year, 3 BM, brought appreciation for the BioMed and “kiss my cheek” was first used as an invocation of good luck. The decline in chronic inflammation decimated cases of depression, obesity, arthritis and allergies. Detection rates for cancer and degenerative diseases of the elderly plateaued. Cancer and geriatric specialists took credit for the efficacy of their latest therapies. Infant mortality in America began to approach that observed in developed countries. Pharmaceutical stocks tanked. Lactation fashions reach the catwalks. Hospital closures begin. Advertising for cold medications, drugs and baby formula is banned. American worker productivity soars.

It is amazing that at any given time, the US is just a couple of years away from medical utopia. The cure for chronic inflammation, diet and exercise, is available to all.