As I was first beginning makingallthingsnew, I spent a lot of time checking out the blogs which focused on diabetes. There’s one blog that had been around a long time, and I went through all his old posts looking to see how we addressed the various aspects of this disease.
I liked most of what I read, but I was surprised at all the pharmaceutical ads on the site. Then, in one of his posts, I learned that there had been a big diabetes blogger convention (who would have thought the pool was large enough to have a convention?) down in Florida. The blogger mentioned how wonderful it had been to participate in this all expense paid gathering. If you’re wondering who paid the expenses, it was a major pharmaceutical company. Big surprise.
This morning, I was reading that one of the largest health related websites, WebMD got in trouble for their on-line depression test. As it turns out, no matter how you answered the questions, the results always indicate that you were at risk for major depression, and should get in contact with your doctor. The test was sponsored by Eli Lilly, the makers of one the most prescribed anti-depressant, Cymbalta.
To be fair, WebMD does note that the test is sponsored by Lilly, but they still rigged the test. WebMD also touts themselves as being an independent health website, but I wonder just how independent they really are.
Why am I writing about this? Your health is precious, and you need to be your own best advocate. In order to do that, you must have good, objective information. I know from personal experience that this is not an easy task. I’ve had major differences of opinion between my doctor and my dietician. Whose advice do you go with?
Many of us are turning to the internet for answers, and I think that’s a great thing. But you need to be cautious when making health decisions based upon info you get from websites. My suggestion is that you always bring your own healthcare provider into the loop before making any changes. If you don’t like their response, get a second opinion.
Be cautious about any blogger or health website whose only advertisers are big pharmaceutical companies. If they don’t touch upon all the options and alternatives available to you, then jump on another site.
I promise that if my blog ever gets so popular that companies want to advertise here, I will never put financial gain over objectivity. It’s just not worth it. As Jesus said in Luke 9:25, what good would it be for someone to gain the whole world yet lose their very self?
To conclude, I want to say that there are many, many benefits from taking medicine when we truly need it. We live in a wonderful time of medical advances, and there are lots of folks alive today because of the drugs and other treatments which are available today. One of my closest friends is one of them.