Q: You don’t need drugs to treat a fever. I used to put my kids in a bathtub with tepid to cool water to bring their temperatures down.
Like me, my children (now all grown) have never taken Tylenol nor any other drugs, with the exception of the odd aspirin. We used honey and onion as the cure of the day for colds and sore throats. We all need to get back to nature now.
A: Long before there were fever-reducing drugs, doctors used hydrotherapy to bring down a fever. We found an article in the Boston Medical and Surgical Journal of 1904. (Later, this became the New England Journal of Medicine.) It pointed out that the Greek physicians Hippocrates and Galen used cool water to treat a fever. Sponge baths were later prescribed to treat fever.
Medical attention must be sought whenever a feverish patient is acting ill. Fever is usually a symptom of an underlying infection that may need to be addressed.
Q: CBD oil is the most effective remedy for my arthritis. I took meloxicam for years, but the side effects made me look for alternative relief.
CBD oil from hemp is fantastic for arthritis pain. It’s good for a number of other things, too.
A: It’s unfortunate that so little research has been done on the effects of cannabidiol for treating arthritis in humans. We found a few studies on rats and mice. There is also a recent double-blind placebo-controlled trial in dogs (Pain, April 24, 2020.)
The investigators found that low-dose cannabidiol was no better than placebo, but high-dose cannabidiol was helpful. The authors suggest that CBD might be helpful in treating pain and improving quality of life for humans as well as dogs with osteoarthritis.
Q: I don’t understand why more doctors are not familiar with vitamins and minerals. Whenever I mention supplements to any of my physicians, they always say they don’t know anything about them. Sometimes they don’t recommend supplements because they might interact or interfere with current medications I’m taking. Or they dismiss vitamins as a waste of money. Why is mainstream medicine so gung-ho for chemical medicines like statins, but averse to meds from nature?
A: Your doctors are right that vitamins and minerals might interact with some medications. For example, calcium, iron, zinc and magnesium can interfere with the absorption of the thyroid hormone levothyroxine. Potassium can make blood pressure pills like lisinopril or losartan more dangerous.
A more likely scenario involves nutrient depletion by commonly prescribed medications. Acid-suppressing drugs such as esomeprazole (Nexium) and omeprazole (Prilosec) can lead to lower levels of magnesium, iron, selenium and B vitamins.
Blood pressure pills like captopril, enalapril and lisinopril can deplete the body of zinc and coenzyme Q10. Thiazide diuretics and furosemide affect B vitamins as well as minerals like magnesium, potassium, sodium and zinc.
If you would like to learn more about how common medications affect your nutritional status, you may want to read Dr. Tieraona Low Dog’s comprehensive book, “Fortify Your Life: Your Guide to Vitamins, Minerals, and More.” It is available in your local library or bookstore and in the Books section of the store at www.PeoplesPharmacy.com.