"To be happy in this world you have to ignore some things." -- Alan Drew, "Shadow Man"

Sunday, November 17, 2013

A Healthy Dose of Boomer Advice

     The Best of Boomer Blogs focuses this week on several health issues. For example, did you know that older adults suffer from anorexia, too? Hospitalizations for problems caused by eating disorders grew by 48 percent in adults ages 45 to 64 between 1999 and 2006. See Rita R. Robison's The Survive and Thrive Boomer Guide for more information.

     Karen Austin reminds us that just as we wanted patience from our parents when we were awkward teens, our parents would like our support as they adjust to age-related changes to their bodies. Karen discusses this in her post Don't be a Boy Scout.

     And Laura Lee Carter on the Midlife Crisis Queen wonders why we in this country pay those whose primary job is caring for others very little, especially compared to those who manage things or sell things.

     Meanwhile, Amy Blitchok tells us that on Nov. 5, 2013, Attorney General Eric Holder announced the Justice Department had reached a $2.2 billion settlement with Johnson & Johnson to cover criminal and civil fines for illegally marketing Risperdal, an antipsychotic drug, to older patients with dementia. The company was found guilty of targeting the most vulnerable portions of society. Learn more at Modern Senior and decide for yourself if J&J was guilty of unethical practices.

      As for me, I've been having a discussion about the Affordable Care Act with Douglas over at Boomer Musings. I admit there's a lot about health care I don't understand and probably never will. For example, I don't understand why, despite marketing efforts by a major pharmaceutical company, doctors would go ahead and prescribe a drug like Risperdal for patients who aren't intended to be helped by that drug.

     On a different but related subject, I don't understand why drug companies are allowed to advertise prescription drugs on TV. These drugs are available only through your doctor, who is supposed to be an expert. Why should drug companies be trying to sell these products to uninformed people who have no idea how to diagnose let alone cure whatever health problem they have? Obviously, the companies are trying to get people to pressure their doctors to give them a drug, which may or not be beneficial to them, just because they saw an ad on TV. That doesn't seem right, does it?

     Anyway, in the interest of good health for all of us, I ran across an item called How Much Water Should You Be Drinking? Someone recently told me that we should drink our weight in water every day, in ounces. I weigh 190 lbs. So I'm supposed to drink 190 ounces of water? I know we're all supposed to drink water. But still, that seems like a lot to me.

     I do know, however, know that you're not supposed to wait until you feel thirsty before you drink. By the time you're thirsty, you're already dehydrated.

     And then there's the eternal question. If you drink other liquids -- like orange juice or lemonade, or tea or coffee or soft drinks -- do they count as water substitutes? Go check out the section on other ways to hydrate in the water article and you'll find out. But I am pretty sure that beer and wine don't count.


Anonymous said...

Coffee counts as a liquid, and one of my 8 glasses per day according to Weight Watchers. As my sodium and potassium levels are 'below normal' I am advised by my doctor to drink less…thus you see, one size does not fit all.

As for drugs, I agree, physicians should be the best line of defense. However, David was very upset with his heart doctor recently over drugs. She wants him take a new 'untested' drug (David says).

He was taking Plavix for Afib, but stopped because he became so bruised (he blamed Plavix). Switched to aspirin, which seemed to work, except bruising continued. SHE (the doc) told him to stop taking the aspirin and switch to a new drug.

So he switched heart doctors. Sees the new guy on Monday. Dianne

John Agno said...

Just reading this week's Best of Boomers Blogs, I became thirsty for more. Keep up the good work!

stephen Hayes said...

You make many good points, but the one I feel strongest about is drug advertising on TV. You couldn't be more right about the inappropriateness of this. I think this is how drug companies get around the FDA--by getting people to clamor for drugs that haven't been properly tested. It seems there have been more drug recalls in the past five years than in the twenty previous years.

Laura Lee Carter aka the Midlife Crisis Queen said...

Please post my new one on here Tom! Thanks!

DJan said...

Wow, Tom, I think I've discovered a gold mine in your blog. Off to learn about all this stuff. And BTW, I'm sure thieves don't read my blog. Hahaha! :-)

Anonymous said...

I take 5 different drugs and so does hubby. Where would we be without them? Lol.

Arkansas Patti said...

I agree that TV drug advertising should not be yet am amazed that people actually still ask for the drugs after hearing the totally disgusting side effects.

Douglas said...

Please be advised that the prescription drugs advertised on TV are already approved by the FDA so they have been through the alleged "rigorous testing" (that all too often does not reveal the deadly or debilitating side effects before approval).

I, too, think this advertising is to drum up demand by patients. I could, at this point, offer an anecdote about my father questioning AT&T's advertising since it was a monopoly at the time. He did this in front of me (who worked there) and my uncle (who worked for one of its regional operating companies... New York Telephone)... made for a lively hour.

Friko said...

For Boomers as well as everybody else common sense is needed. Keep calm, think carefully and decide once you have all the facts.

Don’t follow any unsolicited advice (TV ads) slavishly. Hydration has been on the agenda here too again, recently. It’s possible to drink too much, just as it is possible not to drink enough.

Anonymous said...

It's not just on TV. Companies place full page spreads in newspapers and magazines touting their new drugs. Ask your doctor if xxx is right for you.