Wednesday, June 24, 2009


June 8th‘s cover story in Newsweek criticizes Oprah Winfrey for recommending alternative medical treatments. It goes still further lambasting Suzanne Somers and implying that she is a wacko. The article pokes fun at her and cynically describes her health routines as ridiculous.

I have a great deal of respect for Suzanne Somers and Oprah. Both are courageous pioneering type women who use their celebrity in positive ways to help others. If they didn’t disclose alternative styles of medical treatments and technology, who would? Newsweek?

Just opening the front cover of the June 8th issue quickly immediately provides a take on who runs THAT show. Four major advertisements by large pharmaceutical companies leap out at you in this issue alone. Not surprisingly, one of them happens to be Wyeth, the pharma-giant which has been spending millions of dollars lobbying Congress to shut down “Mom and Pop” compounding pharmacies. “And why”? you might ask.

Could it have anything to do with the plummeting sales of their notorious products Premarin and Prempro, the drugs shown in the Women’s Health Initiative study to increase the incidence of stroke, heart attack, and breast cancer in users? In fact, this is the only hormone product that has been proven to cause these diseases, yet this is the same company working diligently to have Estriol, the only hormone shown to PROTECT women from breast cancer, removed from the market.

How confusing! Why would a drug company want to remove a drug from the market that helps women, while still promoting and marketing their own product which has been shown in scientific studies to be harmful? Now this would be a really good question to ask the editors of Newsweek magazine. A magazine that accepts large amounts of advertising dollars from Wyeth while publishing articles criticizing women who want to take bioidentical hormones is certainly suspect. Could there be a connection here?

I cancelled my subscription to Newsweek years ago for similar reasons. This is not a news magazine. While news items may infiltrate the periodical, it is a mainstream media platform for advertisers with deep war chests of dollars to express their opinions and influence public sentiment. There is virtually nothing in their cover story about Oprah that I agree with. There is not enough room here on my blog for me to fully express my opinions.

But, I will say this—there has never been any data to prove that bioidentical hormones are harmful, like Prempro, for example. Bioidentical hormones are not “synthesized” as the article contends. I would even question the use of expert references such as Dr. Nanette Santoro, who are cited to support the article. A reproductive endocrinologist, Dr. Santoro specializes in helping women get pregnant. It would certainly be of interest to qualify how many women she sees in her practice specifically for menopause-related conditions. She is quoted as stating that menopause is a hormone deficiency disease is “discredited”. It might follow then, that she thinks menopause is an antidepressant, sleeping pill, and pain medication deficiency disease.

One major point that the writers, Weston Kosova and Pat Wingert, are insistent about is that hormones—especially as described by Suzanne Somers—are used to “restore youth”. This is absolutely not the intention of replacing missing hormones. It is actually to restore health.

It is well known that the incidence of major illnesses like heart disease, cancer, autoimmune disease, osteoporosis, high blood pressure, diabetes, arthritis, and once again—did I say “Cancer”—all increase dramatically after menopause. Young women with super high hormone levels are virtually immune to these diseases. Just the incidence of heart disease rises so dramatically after menopause that the risk to women equals that of men.

My orientation to replacing postmenopausal hormones in women is not to keep them young, but to keep them healthy. Aging does not have to be synonymous with disease. We cannot stop the aging process, but we have more options to preventing disease than ever before. Despite the efforts of Big Pharma and their media mouthpieces like Newsweek magazine, the truth will be told by courageous, intelligent women like Suzanne Somers, Oprah Winfrey, and Robin McGraw. A pioneering, innovative spirit informs the bedrock on which this country is founded and is still alive today. Big advertisers and publishers may have the loudest voice that money can buy right now, but I am confident that the facts will continue to become public knowledge and the search for truth will win out. History shows that it always works out that way.


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