When last did you stop and look around you whilst in either a pharmacy or a supermarket and take note of all the bottles and boxes of products claiming to help you recover from a common cold? The money being made by pharmaceutical companies from we humans trying to stay healthy during winter months must run into the billions (whether rands, pounds, dollars, euros or any other currency). If a cure were to be found for the common cold then there would be no need for all these hundreds and possibly thousands of products cluttering up the shelves.
A cough, a runny nose, itchy ears , sneezing– these can all be signs of a cold and we are constantly being told that the best course of action is usually to try to prevent it from turning into something more serious such as bronchitis or, the worst case scenario, pneumonia. Are we not perhaps prone to being brain washed into believing that we have to take off-the-shelf medication or, worse than that, a prescription for an antibiotic, in order to get rid of the cold? If caught in its early stages an early night with a home-made toddy could be the best remedy of all, perhaps with no side effects either.
In the past it was the usual routine to drink a hot lemon drink which contained a spoonful of honey (and maybe a tot of brandy) in order to help us stop coughing and to feel better. Once tissues replaced those ghastly and bug infested cotton handkerchiefs it became easier to manage one’s cold. Blow, flush away and wash your hands afterwards became routine instead of having all those filthy germs sitting inside a soiled rag in your pocket. Yuck! So, with improved means of coping with that wretched cold what has actually changed for the better? From taking vitamin C tablets, cough mixtures, rubbing one’s chest and throat with a vaporub, there is still no cure- all for the common cold. Why? Is it possible that, like so many areas in life where the controlling force is money, that any invention which could prove that it really does cure a cold would be hi-jacked before it could become common knowledge? Too many people would lose too much money if none of us ever again needed to peruse the shelves in search of that elusive successful cold remedy.
At the risk of being attacked from all angles by anyone who is earning an extremely lucrative living from being part of a huge pharmaceutical company, I am extremely cynical when it comes to medicines and the ease with which doctors dispense a pill for every possible ailment. Sometimes a placebo might be the best option as we all have heard time and again of the power of our minds. The current extremely high incidence of cancer must be one of the very best calamities as far as the pharmaceutical companies are concerned. The moment anyone is diagnosed with the disease it seems that in most cases the first thing the doctors do is to recommend chemotherapy or radiation, or both. If a growth is removed, then these options also seem to be very much the route which is followed.
Sadly, over the years I have seen many friends as well as a family member suffer the most incredibly painful results of the above treatments and none of them is alive today. So, all the cost and extremely unpleasant side effects didn’t save their lives. In some cases maybe they had a few months longer than if they had opted to refuse the treatments? I know that there are many people here in South Africa who are trying Cannabis Oil and when it comes to pain alleviation, the results would appear to be very positive in many cases. Not for me to judge, but the billions spent annually on chemotherapy drugs and radiation treatments would surely be a factor which may be preventing that elusive cancer cure? Just a thought but there must be others out there reading this post who have seen or experienced first hand loved ones suffering the pain and indignity of these treatments and seen the patients losing their hair, feeling weak and debilitated for a great deal of the time and then dying anyway.
There do seem to be excellent results in many instances where children have been diagnosed, for example, with childhood leukaemia. Although they have had to endure all the pain and suffering of their chemotherapy treatments, the disease has gone into remission and often never ever raised its ugly head again. As parents it is obviously going to be a case of trying anything and everything to save your child’s life. When it comes to adults, perhaps we should be considering all our options before taking the route of radical treatments.
However, with all the advances being made in the medical field why do we still not have a cure for cancer? We also don’t have one for the common cold but we are looking at being able to have a body part replaced using 3D imaging. Too much income would be lost by the massive pharmaceutical businesses worldwide if cures were to be readily available perhaps in the form of an injection or drops taken orally as with smallpox or polio. A controversial issue and one that we could debate ad infinitum. Suffice to say that we have been blessed with a questioning mind (most of us, anyway) and we do have the right to make our own decisions without being bullied into taking a course of action which is against our better judgement.
On a more cheerful note, let’s all try to keep some kind of balance in our lives as far as our health is concerned and do our best to enjoy every day to the full. I trust that you found something of interest in this post as I enjoy putting my thoughts down on paper, despite possibly ruffling a few feathers in the process. Some subjects lend themselves to future posts and health and lifestyle are one of many. So, stay well, eat well, exercise when you can and most of all try to keep a positive outlook on life. Not always easy to do, but nothing ventured, nothing gained!
“Suggested remedy for the common cold: a good gulp of
whiskey at bedtime – it’s not very scientific,
but it helps.” – Alexander Fleming (1881-1955)