Friday, November 21, 2003

# 60: You, your health, your time and the Internet • Exercise and Cholesterol • Useful Health Sites

You, your health, your time and the Internet

Okay a doctor had to say it sooner or later. The internet has irrevocably changed the doctor-patient relationship all over the world. Well maybe not for people who have no access to the internet, but everyone else.

These days, I'm not at all surprised when a patient knows more about his or her disease than I do! All they have to do is type the name of their illness once and Dr Google will provide an almost infinite amount of information for them. This is the way people become experts on their own illness in general. And there is the rub 'in general'. That means they can learn a lot about the illness itself but not about how exactly it should be treated in their case. Patients often misdiagnose themselves as they are not aware of what we call the 'differential diagnosis', the other illnesses whose symptoms are somewhat similar to what the patient thinks they have.

Personally, I am grateful when a patient brings in information about their illness from the internet. It's easier than researching it myself! Some patients bring in large books about their illness and this is less useful as many of these books are written by fanatics with axes to grind and are often incredibly badly written to boot. They always remind me of a huge doorstep of a blockbuster novel which received the following literary review: 'My first advice to you is not to read this book. My second is that if you do, don't drop it on your foot!'

Useful websites on the Internet ( a site associated with the American government, this is an excellent place to type in any illness and get it explained to you in simple non-jargon. (this is the site that I use to do research on the internet. This is a site for the professional - professional doctor, professional patient or professional researcher. Superb, nobody can criticise the internet after seeing this. (a superbly comprehensive, up-to-the-minute site on health and medicine)

Exercise and Cholesterol

And straight from the is an article on whether regular exercise can decrease your cholesterol level. All forms of exercise including gardening and cleaning can lower your cholesterol and help your heart in the following ways
1. Exercise increases the 'healthy cholesterol' (HDL) and lowers the dangerous cholesterol (LDL).
2. Exercise helps you lose weight which is good news for your coronary arteries.
3. Exercise tones and strengthens your heart.
4. Exercise improves and energises the circulation in general which helps sweep away any early clots that develop in the blood vessels.

Homeopathic Tip of the Week
Some excellent homeopathic sites on the internet. (The site of the Faculty of Homeopathy and the British Homeopathic Association) The main site for medical homeopathy in Britain. They can supply you with all sorts of leaflets and information on homeopathy and will give you a list of medical doctors trained in homeopathy in your part of the country. An excellent site (The site of the Homeopathic Physician's Teaching Group. One of the main organization that teaches doctors homeopathic medicine) (my personal website, with information about my book, The Homeopathic Conversation (Natural Medicine Press, 2001) (excellent site of the author of the best-selling The Family Guide to Homeopathy) (homeopathic educational service for pharmacies and suppliers of nutritional supplements) (excellent site for all sorts of information on homeopathy) (highly informative website of the Glasgow Homeopathic Hospital)

No comments: