Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Exciting news!

In the news this week, CBC’s medical reporter Dr. Peter Linn hosted a segment on Doctors in the media.  Many of us are familiar with the popular t.v. programs such as Dr Oz and The Doctors. People apparently not only have an interest in medical news, but our appetite is ferocious!    We want new and exciting health news that is often entertaining.  The medical community is expressing concern as this need to provide sensational reporting sometimes skews medical reality.   Dr. Linn feels that we believe what we see on t.v., and what we see on t.v. might not be good for us.   For instance, while dark chocolate may be good for our heart, exercise may be more important and effective in lowering cholesterol than indulging in a pot of gold.
My concern is this:  very little of the health information being broadcast is about what’s happening above our neck and in our heads.  Are we paying equal attention to our brains?  Are we really concerned about our body and mind as a whole and how the two interact?  Or are we just looking for easy water cooler, coffee break and Facebook discussion material?
In the past week, a major medical breakthrough was announced regarding mental health.  The drug Ketamine, being studied at the Royal Ottawa hospital by Dr. Pierre Blier, may be an almost instant cure for people plagued with otherwise incurable deep depression.  This barely hit the news, although we hear about Ketamine more commonly as the “date rape” drug.
What do you think?  Do we speak openly about our mental health?  Is it equally important? Is it easy to talk about?
By the way, not only may dark chocolate be good for our heart, it has chemical components which may also elevate our endorphins making us feel mentally good.  I think I’ll go have a bit, maybe just not the whole box?

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