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EP187 How To Avoid The Most Commonly Prescribed Drugs

Transcript Of Today's Episode

Dr. Martin Jr.: You're listening to the Doctor's In podcast from martinclinic.com. Although we share a lot of practical, and in our opinion, awesome information, what you hear on this podcast is not intended to diagnose, cure, treat or prevent any disease. It's strictly for informational purposes, so enjoy.

Dr. Martin Jr.: Hello, I'm Dr. Martin Jr.

Dr. Martin Sr.: I'm Dr. Martin senior.

Dr. Martin Jr.: And this is a Doctor's In podcast [00:00:30] and this is episode 187. Today I want to talk about something that you and I wrote about in a newsletter a few weeks ago and it has to do with the prescription drug use in the United States between the years 2015 and 2016. Now this report just came out in May of 2019 so this is the latest data that they had. They just put this report out and it's very fascinating some of the stuff that they found in there and we'll talk about it because we'll see some definitely common [00:01:00] patterns as we look at it. But here are a few highlights that I found interesting, so we'll share that first. Then we'll also talk about the most common drugs that are used based on the ages of people. And again, this is coming straight from the US Department of Health and Human Services. So this is the data. This is by the CDC. So this is the latest data on drug use, prescription drug use in 2015, 2016.

Dr. Martin Jr.: So first of all, they found that 45.8% [00:01:30] of the population used prescription drugs at some point in the past 30 days in 2015, 2016. So almost half the US population was on some kind of prescription drug at that point, so just crazy. As obviously makes the most sense, prescription drug use increased with age, so kids under the age of 12 accounted for about 18% of the prescription drug use. Roughly 84, [00:02:00] 85% was over 60 so it's on both ends of the spectrum.

Dr. Martin Sr.: Yeah, young. Young and old.

Dr. Martin Jr.: You and old are using drugs. I mean 85, so there are so many things I found fascinating with this. The amount of prescription drug use by people over the age of 60, it's like everybody's on them. It's rare for someone not to be on a medication. Then it's crazy. When somebody comes in, and you see this in the clinic too, and they're not on any medication and they're older, it's a rarity.

Dr. Martin Sr.: Yeah, very [00:02:30] rare. Very rare. I've seen people, I think the highest count I've ever had was a lady probably three or four years ago that I think was on, I counted 27 medications. Anyway, that was that's the world record. If anybody that's listening to this and can send in, if you ever heard of anybody taking more than that, like 27 different prescripts-

Dr. Martin Jr.: There's no way that person felt good. Obviously they were in to see you. There's no way that they had energy.

Dr. Martin Sr.: [00:03:00] I was shocked that the person was alive.

Dr. Martin Jr.: Their brain must've been mush. They could have been sleeping. Regardless, or sleep-

Dr. Martin Sr.: Exhausted.

Dr. Martin Jr.: I can imagine. Who looks at that and says-

Dr. Martin Sr.: Almost three quarters of them were for side effects of the medication. So you get one side effect, they had to give you a drug to counteract that side effect. That was-

Dr. Martin Jr.: Then it doesn't stop. Then it's literally a never ending story after because the drugs start to, cause... You saw [00:03:30] that with statin drugs, cholesterol lowering drugs. People would get on that. Then they're sore all over. Then they get on an anti-inflammatory, then their digestive system is not that good. So next thing you know they're on Proton pump inhibitors. Then a little while later, because we know they're not getting any calcium into their bones, they start getting on calcium drugs and different osteoporosis drugs and then it just never ending at that point. Never ending at that point.

Dr. Martin Jr.: The sad thing is rarely [00:04:00] do they say, "Hey, what are you eating?" We say this all the time. The two most important questions your doctor should be asking you is A, how do you feel? And B, what are you eating? Because those two things should determine everything afterwards. They should determine everything. They'll say, "I don't care how you're feeling, let's check the blood tests and the blood tests are normal, so therefore I don't care how you feel." And two, they never ask about food. They never...

Dr. Martin Sr.: Well they don't see the correlation.

Dr. Martin Jr.: No. They will recommend antacids [00:04:30] or Proton pump inhibitors every day, but they'll never say to the person, "Hey, what do you eating?"

Dr. Martin Sr.: It's about time to change your diet.

Dr. Martin Jr.: And I understand they don't have the time. The system is set up, especially here in Canada, they can't sit down. It's not like a family doctor in Canada can come into the room, start talking about the hockey playoffs for 15 minutes, sit down and then start talking and asking you a bunch of questions. That's not how it works. Usually there's a sign on the door that [00:05:00] says, ask one question and that's it. It's fast and it's not their fault. It's the system that we're in. They can't slow down to do those kinds of things. So then they send you to... They'll recommend if you do want to talk diet, they'll send you to a dietician and without going down a rabbit hole there, we know how that ends up. But at the end of the day that's what happens. So let's talk quickly about the most common drug used based on the age.

Dr. Martin Jr.: So we wrote about this in the newsletter [00:05:30] because this is fascinating. From the ages of zero to 11 the most common prescription drug used are Bronco dilators for asthma. Which is insane when you think about it. The amount of kids that are taking inhalers of some kind or Bronco dilators because they have asthma. Now you and I, when we wrote that newsletter we talked about this. By far the most common cause of asthma like symptoms [00:06:00] in kids has to do with a food sensitivity or food allergy. Because when you have a sensitivity to a food or an allergy to a food and your body undergoes a little bit of an immune response.

Dr. Martin Sr.: Over overstimulated.

Dr. Martin Jr.: Part of that immune response is to produce mucus because in mucus are antibodies that help fight off things. Therefore you start to produce mucus in your sinuses. You start to produce mucus in your esophagus and [00:06:30] your lungs and next thing you know you're wheezing. That's why it is. A lot of adults, when they have a food sensitivity, they end up with post nasal drip at nighttime. They don't even understand why. It's because they're eating something that's causing an increase in mucus production and it's clogging up their sinuses. Then they end up with Candida and all those other issues that go along with it and they end up with postnasal drip or they're clearing their throat all day.

Dr. Martin Jr.: Kids get asthma when they have, [00:07:00] for a lot of kids, they have a food sensitivity of some kind and most of the time it's dairy. Most of the time for kids, they just... And it's not even that they're lactose intolerant. They may not be getting digestive symptoms. They may. They may be getting digestive symptoms, but it's not even a digestive issue with dairy, it's an actual allergy to the dairy protein. They just can't handle it. It creates this autoimmune response in their body and that creates mucus production [00:07:30] and that causes the lungs to malfunction and they take a dilator. A dilator, as we've mentioned, is very important. When you can't breathe, you need a bronco dilator.

Dr. Martin Sr.: And then think about it too, and I may have mentioned this before on other podcasts, is I just tell you when I was a kid, okay, we're going back a long time now. In the 1950s when I was a kid, I just tell you. And it wasn't... Because somebody say, "Well, you know, there was no such thing as [00:08:00] steroid pumps or even any kind of pumps for asthma." There was no asthma. I mean, I'm telling you, I never saw it once in my... It wasn't because there wasn't medicine around, but there was people just didn't-

Dr. Martin Jr.: No, they smoked.

Dr. Martin Sr.: They smoked, right?

Dr. Martin Jr.: I mean that was generally the cause of like deteriorating lungs, was smoking.

Dr. Martin Sr.: But kids didn't have, like they had a blue pump in their jeans or whatever. [00:08:30] And every time they thought, oh, they're having breathing problems. It just didn't happen. It wasn't there. So you know that you're mentioning dairy because why has dairy become one of the greatest probably in terms of food, one of the most, well, if it's not the most common antigen... Like when I say an...

Dr. Martin Jr.: Like food sensitivity for sure.

Dr. Martin Sr.: A food sensitivity.

Dr. Martin Jr.: No question.

Dr. Martin Sr.: You always say it. I always love that. You say, "Look, here's three things you should look at [00:09:00] if you got any kind of symptoms to look and see what are you sensitive to?"

Dr. Martin Jr.: You don't have to go deep into the weeds most of the time.

Dr. Martin Sr.: Like eliminate dairy and find out. Do it yourself. You don't have to get a big test done.

Dr. Martin Jr.: No, you could do it yourself.

Dr. Martin Sr.: Like I always tell my patients, do the test yourself.

Dr. Martin Jr.: And there's dairy in a lot of stuff.

Dr. Martin Sr.: I say, "Mommy, you do the test." Be Dr. Mom at home. So find out what your kid... Like I had a kid come in this morning, asthma, breathing trouble, concentration [00:09:30] trouble, dark, dark circles under their eyes. I said, "Look, that kid has a 100% of an intolerance." I mean look, they've got leaky gut. I didn't want to go into that too much, but I said, "Mom figure it out. It won't take you long." I said, "It's dairy, eggs." I see a lot of people like even though eggs are so good for you, and cream is good for you too, and so is that, but you know what?

Dr. Martin Jr.: Until it's not.

Dr. Martin Sr.: Until it's [00:10:00] not.

Dr. Martin Jr.: I always tell people the same thing. Dairy could be very good for you until it's not. Eggs, same thing. Eggs aren't good for me.

Dr. Martin Sr.: Generally cheese is good for you, but maybe you have trouble with-

Dr. Martin Jr.: Until it's not.

Dr. Martin Sr.: Until it's not. The other one is gluten. You talk about that all the time. I'm a big guy on that because I think it's not the same anymore. The wheat's not the same. We live in a different world. Dairy's not the same as it was like when the milkman used to come to our house, like [00:10:30] that's how old I am. The milkman came to our house.

Dr. Martin Jr.: And you had to shake your milk

Dr. Martin Sr.: You had to shake it. Milk was different because it was whole milk. It had 50% of the-

Dr. Martin Jr.: It's not treated like it is today. It's not the same.

Dr. Martin Sr.: It's not same. It's white Pepsi, that's where I call the milk today.

Dr. Martin Jr.: Yeah, it's not the same. It's funny because we say statements like we have a hard time sometimes understanding that something can be both ends of the spectrum are equally true. Dairy could be very good for you and dairy could be [00:11:00] very bad for you. Both of those are true. Context matters. Context definitely matters. The reason why I talk about dairy a lot is because I went through this with my son, Ethan. I remember him, we were young when we had him, him needing oxygen at the hospital on a few occasions while we lived in Chicago because he couldn't breathe.

Dr. Martin Jr.: Then this is years. This a long time ago. Then [00:11:30] figured out it was dairy. We lived in the Midwest. I mean they know the price of gas and the price of gallon per milk. It's funny, I go visit my wife's family and the old farmers, they ask me what's the price of gas and what's the price of milk like it's a currency. I'm like, I haven't bought milk in, I don't even know the last time. Plus we're in litres. They asked me the price of gas. I'm like, well, it's a buck 55 a litre, so I think that's... Or whatever.

Dr. Martin Sr.: It's about $10 a gallon.

Dr. Martin Jr.: It's a lot more. It's hard. It's hard to compare, but the old farmers [00:12:00] will ask me that.

Dr. Martin Sr.: That's true, right?

Dr. Martin Jr.: They asked me all the time, "What's the price of milk?"

Dr. Martin Sr.: But if you could go and drink the milk that was coming out of the cow right there, I would bet you dollars to donuts that kids wouldn't have trouble.

Dr. Martin Jr.: No, and it's just the way it is today. We're not going back.

Dr. Martin Sr.: It's not going to go back to that, so you're not going to get a cow in the backyard.

Dr. Martin Jr.: So if your kid is allergic to dairy, and again there's allergies where... Peanuts you consume some, you're going to have some serious [00:12:30] anaphylactic issues. Then there's others. There's what they call delayed hypersensitivities, so you can consume a food and then your body just doesn't like it. It gets irritated. I always tell people, delayed hypersensitivities is like a cranky old man. The body's just... It just doesn't like it. It's just like, well, whatever, I don't like it. And the body just overreacts, makes mucus and you start to wheeze and yet your skin breaks out.

Dr. Martin Sr.: [crosstalk 00:12:53] antigens and all that.

Dr. Martin Jr.: It just doesn't like it.

Dr. Martin Sr.: Your body's trying to tell you something.

Dr. Martin Jr.: A lot of people when they fix their gut and they fixed their leaky gut [00:13:00] issues, they can tolerate things. It's like me, I could tolerate things way better than I ever have before, but I also know that because I can tolerate it does not give me the liberty to go. You know, I don't have a license to kill. I can tolerate it here and there, but I can't go crazy for sure. We found that with Ethan, we went from thinking this kid's never going to be able to run around to instantly never having another wheezing ever. He's in his mid-twenties, he's married, and he's never had an issue since ever. It's just because his body [00:13:30] was just saying no to dairy.

Dr. Martin Sr.: Dairy was talking to him and a lot of people don't listen.

Dr. Martin Jr.: He has same thing as me, same little sensitive. I don't eat eggs. I get egg envy because I don't digest eggs. I can't handle them, so why even try?

Dr. Martin Sr.: And I love eggs and I do well with them, but your mother doesn't do well with eggs.

Dr. Martin Jr.: No, no, that's right. And I obviously-

Dr. Martin Sr.: She looks at me and she's mad at me all the time.

Dr. Martin Jr.: Yeah, same here. I get mad at people that eat eggs because I want them. I would be willing to spread the cholesterol egg lie just so that nobody [00:14:00] can eat them because I want them as well. If I can't have them, nobody can. But anyways, it's funny. But that's for kids, right? You know another hidden thing as well? And this is something, a lot of those food dyes, those candies that kid eats, those fruit snacks and Fruit Roll-Ups and all these things. If you listen to their lungs after, they're wheezing. It causes a reaction in the lungs. So there's a lot-

Dr. Martin Sr.: That's a big issue too.

Dr. Martin Jr.: So if your kid has asthma, I mean not everyone, but a big percentage [00:14:30] of them have an issue with food somewhere down the line.

Dr. Martin Sr.: And leaky gut.

Dr. Martin Jr.: Yes, leaky gut.

Dr. Martin Sr.: They always have leaky gut. They always have candida yeast.

Dr. Martin Jr.: Now I found for my son probiotics and pine bark extract, which is in our Navitol, worked wonders for him. All right, so that's the age zero to 11. Well because of time, let's just go to the other end of the spectrum, which is 60s.

Dr. Martin Sr.: Statins.

Dr. Martin Jr.: Yeah. Lipid lowering drugs, which you've talked a lot about. We have a great video in our Martin Clinic Facebook group [00:15:00] where you talk about cholesterol drugs again, but here they are. These are the top three drugs for [inaudible 00:15:07].

Dr. Martin Jr.: 22% of the seniors who take drugs are taken anti-diabetic drugs. 24% are taking beta blockers for high blood pressure and heart disease. And 46.3% of the people are taking lipid lowering drugs, high cholesterol. So the majority of seniors are taking [00:15:30] drugs, are taking drugs because they have a high circulating insulin problem.

Dr. Martin Sr.: Because that's the root of all three things that you just talked about.

Dr. Martin Jr.: That's the root. Those three things there are the... High circulating insulin is the root for a majority of the people that have those three things. There's no question.

Dr. Martin Sr.: Just on the drug thing too, one of the issues of when you're a diabetic, guess what came down? [00:16:00] An edict came down about 10 years ago, came out of the Diabetic Association and the American Heart Association got together and said, "You know what? If you're a diabetic, just as a preventative thing, let's just throw you on Staten drugs too." So if you're a diabetic, it actually became almost like a law to the physicians that they were to put you-

Dr. Martin Jr.: Instantaneous.

Dr. Martin Sr.: Instantaneous, without any research. Without any-

Dr. Martin Jr.: It was like a flow chart. Diabetic, statins.

Dr. Martin Sr.: [00:16:30] And it was, well wait a minute, now they're finding out statins even caused diabetes. It elevates your insulin. So imagine. But anyway, that's just to show you that though, how-

Dr. Martin Jr.: Well I remember, and you were telling me about this, and I remember reading this, they were actually considering adding it to drinking water.

Dr. Martin Sr.: It actually was-

Dr. Martin Jr.: Now you as a drug company, like I'm going to tip my hat. That's great marketing. If you can get a city to put-

Dr. Martin Sr.: The British parliament [00:17:00] considered. This is going back 10 years ago maybe.

Dr. Martin Jr.: How many people are on the take when that happens?

Dr. Martin Sr.: They considered putting it in the drinking water, Staten drugs, to put them into lower cholesterol they said. Like they think it's like a vitamin for heaven's sake.

Dr. Martin Jr.: I mean you might as well go make that announcement with a pharmaceutical name tag. That's crazy.

Dr. Martin Sr.: That's literally happened. It got defeated.

Dr. Martin Jr.: People used to joke that they would say [00:17:30] essentially you had a statin deficiency like it was a vitamin, that you just needed to take a statin drug. Of course, I just read a study again the other day, seniors with low cholesterol levels die faster, their brains don't work. I read somebody else say this and I found this interesting. If they can ever figure out a way to turn off cholesterol production forever, that'd be the biggest mass weapon they can ever make because you just need it to survive. Your body doesn't trust you to get enough in your food [00:18:00] and eating food does not have a major impact on cholesterol levels. Eating cholesterol does nothing for your cholesterol levels. So your body doesn't trust you enough to get it. It makes it because your cells need it.

Dr. Martin Sr.: 85% of it comes out of your liver.

Dr. Martin Jr.: You need it. Your body makes it. So now we're going to take a drug to lower it thinking that that's going to solve the problem. And they found, again, you did a Facebook live on this and you talked about this on your solo episode a few weeks ago, that heart disease deaths have gone up again for [00:18:30] the first time in a long time.

Dr. Martin Sr.: Surprise, surprise. That was the headline.

Dr. Martin Jr.: Yet people are taking... If you're over the age of 60, you're taking a heart disease drug and it's not working. To me, if that was a sports team and the drugs were the coach, you'd fire the coach. It's not working. The plan isn't working. But again, we talked this, they don't look at diet. They don't ask what you're eating. They're not getting to the root cause of the problem, which again is inflammation [00:19:00] by high circulating insulin, free radical, all those things that we talk about a lot leads to inflammation, leads to heart disease because the heart, the cardiovascular system is fragile to a certain extent and it's the most effected and it's going to be the fastest way to kill you. It doesn't mean it's not going to have an effect everywhere else in your body, but you can affect other things for longer period of time. Your heart, your blood vessels and all that. They are resilient but I mean there's [00:19:30] a lot of them in your body.

Dr. Martin Jr.: All it takes is a little weakness, one place and you've got a stroke. I mean you think about how crazy that is are and how people don't have strokes all the time, but that's how awesome we are made is that fact. Just incredible to think about all the stuff that we do to our body and our blood vessels are holding up. But they hold up until they don't. And when they don't, that's a scary thing for people. Strokes are a terrifying thing for people. Which is why you go to your doctor, you're a certain age and they tell you a few things and [00:20:00] they're like, "Man, you got to get on... You got high blood pressure, your blood vessels are going to pop. You got to get on this beta blocker." Then we know for a fact, once you get on a beta blocker, you're not getting B-12 or B-6 anymore. You don't feel good. Your energy's not quite the same. You're lethargic.

Dr. Martin Jr.: Then they're saying, "Well listen, we're worried about diabetes. Let's get you on Metformin. Let's get you on these things." Then they're like, "Oh, your cholesterol's high. Let's get you on statin drugs." You're sore. I mean, we see this all the time. All the time. And rather [00:20:30] than just saying, "Hey, let's talk about diet. Let's talk about exercise." And I guess on that note, I just want to bring up a study quickly that came out a few years ago and we always come back to this because this is a worry that people have and this study looked at the effect. We like talking about midlife, those 40s and 50s and early 60s. That's the years that matter the most really when it comes to your brain health when you age. That midlife inflammation [00:21:00] is the worst, midlife blood pressure, midlife, all those things damage your brain for later.

Dr. Martin Jr.: But this study looked at the effect of midlife exercise, midlife heart rate and fitness related to brain volume two decades later. So in their 40s and 50s, what were their brains like two decades later? If they had high blood pressure or they had low fitness, what was the effect? [00:21:30] Guess what the effect was? Not good.

Dr. Martin Sr.: Not good.

Dr. Martin Jr.: Not good, right? So again, at the end of the day-

Dr. Martin Sr.: It's never too late to make a change.

Dr. Martin Jr.: And they've shown that.

Dr. Martin Sr.: But it's better to make a change now than to wait. I mean, I think every study we look at, it's always good. I don't care if you're 80 years old, never done anything for your health before. It's never too late. But it's always better to start young 30s, 40s, it's so [00:22:00] important because you're making an investment. You know a lot of people make investments?

Dr. Martin Jr.: You go to the gym because you're depositing into your brain health when you're [crosstalk 00:22:07].

Dr. Martin Sr.: I like what you say. Do you know? Like you're doing leg day. When I do leg day, I'm saying, you know what, I'm helping my brain. It's brain day. I'm doing brain day. You go for a walk, you're doing brain day, right?

Dr. Martin Jr.: Yes, absolutely.

Dr. Martin Sr.: You know, any kind of motion's good. If you can do more, even better because the stronger your legs are...

Dr. Martin Jr.: That's [00:22:30] right. There's a direct connection between the strength of legs and brain health when you're older.

Dr. Martin Sr.: So I go, hey, I'm trying to keep flexible. I want to be able to move. I want to be able to be healthy. I want to be a good example to people. Well, you know what? I go to the gym and I say hey, I want my brain to work. I need my brain to work.

Dr. Martin Jr.: Yes. And again, that's a legitimate fear that people have because as we've talked about in the past, Alzheimers and dementia, it has [00:23:00] grown to the point where overseas it's overtaken heart diseases as the number one killer. That's a big deal.

Dr. Martin Sr.: It's almost unbelievable. If you go back as long as I, you know, like two weeks ago I celebrated my 45th anniversary in practice. That's a lot of years, right? But if you would've told me in the 1970s that atrophy of the brain or Alzheimer's or dementia, we didn't even know what that [00:23:30] was to be honest. It wasn't like there was no words around, but we just...

Dr. Martin Jr.: No, again you would see it in heavy, heavy smokers.

Dr. Martin Sr.: That it would be the number one killer in England?. You'd say, "You're kidding me. Are you kidding me?"

Dr. Martin Jr.: And drugs don't work. Drug trials don't work.

Dr. Martin Sr.: They're looking for love in all the wrong places.

Dr. Martin Jr.: They just haven't gotten to that point. So prevention is by far the key and controlling inflammation. Again, we have a great free video [00:24:00] on our website called Age Proof Your Brain.

Dr. Martin Sr.: It's worth watching that.

Dr. Martin Jr.: We talk about the three big causes of brain inflammation and how to eat for that, which is so important. So I would again, if you haven't gone and watched that video, it's about 45 minutes long, because it's fantastic information. It's just information that people should have if they want to protect their brain as they age. So again, we talked about a lot of stuff today. We kind of went all over the place but it's one of those things when we saw [00:24:30] the information from the-

Dr. Martin Sr.: Well we get passionate. We can't help ourselves.

Dr. Martin Jr.: ... CDC. A lot of the times, especially when it's in seniors, they're taking drugs because they got high circulating insulin and it's amazing what happens when you bring your insulin levels down. So again, we want to thank you for listening and have a great day.

Dr. Martin Jr.: Thanks for listening to the Doctor's In podcast from martinclinic.com. If you have any questions, you can reach us at info@martinclinic.com. If [00:25:00] you're not a newsletter subscriber, you can head to our website and sign up for free. We also have a private Facebook group that you can join. It's a community of awesome people. Finally, I do a Facebook live every Thursday morning at 8:30. Join us again next week for a new episode.