Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Our Oz Obsession

It seems like for the past 5 or so years, our country can not get enough of the beloved Dr. Oz. He was an "Oprah child", as I like to call the likes of them (you know...like Dr. Phil and Iyanla whatever-her-name-is)...and you know when you are in Oprah's good graces you are pretty much set for life.

Here's my problem: he is a cardiothoracic surgeon. A SURGEON. He cuts people for a living. Now, I can not comment on his surgical skills or his expertise, because I haven't seen his results nor have I ever worked with him...(nor could I ever be a surgeon...bad idea...). But I will say, I always found it a little weird that a heart surgeon would speak on national television about "female issues", sinus problems, headaches, and every other type of medical condition you can think of. Why? Because he is a HEART SURGEON. He has the same training I do when it comes to medical problems that are out of his scope of practice....the same things we all learned in medical school. The same things you can google and wiki and read about...and you do prior to every doctors appointment (hence why every patient thinks they are dying of some sort of cancer).

Now, when it comes to the current problem at hand, the issue that he touts random, and non-scientifically proven, supplements and remedies for weight loss and other medical ailments...I agree with the senators who scolded him. Why? Because he is a well-recognized physician that the general public looks up to. They (we) rely on him for advice. They (we) trust what he says because he is a physician. They (we) look up to him as a role model. Should we look up to him? Should we hang on every word he says? Easy one....no. The problem is that he is in a place of power, on a platform you might say. When he uses this platform and power to send messages to the general public that may not be true or reliable, and even in some cases, detrimental, then we have a serious problem.

But let's face it people, the public is to blame too. On what planet do you think that there is a "magical green coffee bean" that will cause you to melt off fat, as if it some "miracle" drug. REALLY? Shame on you. We hang on the words of celebrities as if it is written in the bible. (Fashion too...have you guys seen what you are wearing lately...I'm sure some celebrity made some of these terrible fashion statements "cool"). If you have not learned by now that hard work and dedication are the keys to most everything in life (weight loss included), then let this be your lesson. Also, let's remember that all supplements and even medications are not created equally for everyone. What may be helpful to one patient might be VERY dangerous to the next. This is rarely addressed on his show. Are they safe to take with your current medications? Are they safe for someone with kidney or liver disease?

I'm sure that he and his producers have the same issues with his show that I have with my blog. Content. It's hard to come up with relevant ideas and topics to discuss. That's why I often ask for blog topics or questions. So, it's no surprise that the show has turned to "ooo...what's the cool and trendy supplement now?" on the show...just for content. And you know what? America eats. It. Up. They will not go to the doctor for an annual physical, or get their mammogram, or take their statin, but they will take raspberry ketones. Seriously. What the hell are raspberry ketones? Well I'll tell you one thing...whoever manufacturers them or grows them..or whatever you have to do to get them..is making a KILLING. Why? Because Dr. Oz said they will make you lose weight. And hell, if he says it, then it MUST be true. $$$

While I am at it, no shakes (this is very trendy now...it's actually a pyramid-scheme with parties and all...hilarious), herbs, supplements, or other trendy pyramid-scheme diet fads will ever stick. Ever. Do you really plan on drinking pre-made shakes for the rest of your life? Diet and exercise are a LIFESTYLE change. Nothing will take the place of that.

Let me make a two things very clear:
1. I am not bashing Dr. Oz. I am sure he is a phenomenal physician and surgeon. I am just saying that I think he is a little too enthusiastic about some things that have not been proven...and could potentially hurt people.
2. I am not against supplements. What I am against is taking random things from your nutritional supplement store because some random doctor told you they were good for you. Don't you think YOUR doctor who knows YOUR history and problems may know the best thing for you? If you don't then you should find another doctor.

Once again...eat right. Watch your portions. Exercise. Don't drink soda. Watch the carbs. DO NOT SMOKE. Know your numbers. De-stress. Pretty simple, really.

I wish you all a very happy and HEALTHY ((hot)) Summer!