All of us operate on our beliefs.
Yes, every rational person claims that he/she uses facts and lives in a Left-Brain world. We want to think we study, analyze, evaluate, and make our decisions on what we know to be true.
The sad fact of the matter is that what we believe is true often isn’t. It should be a simple matter, though, to gather solid data and change our mind about something because the evidence is overwhelming. While that’s what we believe, the truth of the matter is that our beliefs trump facts and it is all but impossible to alter anyone’s belief system.
To compound the problem, much of what we believe to be true was given to us without evidence. People we love and trust tell us something and it becomes part of our life. One counselor tells us that we operate from the “writing on our walls”, the beliefs that are written with almost-indelible ink in our minds and on our souls. Anyone who disputes our beliefs – the things we know to be true – is automatically wrong and not to be tolerated.
It takes a major personal effort to first discover that everything we believe might not be true. Merely doing that opens us up for massive positive change.
This is when the real work begins.
We ought to regularly examine our beliefs – especially the ones we are certain are true – and begin with the position that they aren’t. Then, work from there to evaluate other data. Many truths we believe might be true and are left alone. Others demand more study and action.
Here’s a modest list of beliefs held by vast numbers of people. They seem true but the evidence doesn’t support all of them. Many people will even resist the statement that many of our beliefs aren’t true – preferring instead to believe what they believe is true and anyone who disagrees is wrong.
What do you think of these TRUTHS?
- Women will remain “Feminine Forever” if they start taking estrogen (aka HRT or BHRT) when they reach the age of menopause.
- Lab tests can accurately identify imbalances in hormones, which can be used to prescribe hormones and adjust amounts using repeat tests.
- Type 2 Diabetes cannot be cured. Neither can high blood pressure, multiple sclerosis, cancer, osteoporosis, Irritable Bowel Disease, and Allergies.
- Cholesterol is directly related to, and a cause of, coronary disease.
- Fat and foods that contain cholesterol (eggs in particular) are unhealthy.
- Salt is unhealthy and can cause high blood pressure.
- Cholesterol levels must be lowered using drugs – statins – which are safe and there are just a few side effects.
- Diet is irrelevant when it comes to health.
- Nobody needs to take vitamin or mineral supplements and herbs are a complete waste of time – and maybe harmful.
- Diseases can only be cured with drugs, surgery, or radiation.
- The FDA is protecting the safety of our food and drug supplies.
- Adding fluoride to drinking water is useful and completely safe.
- Dumping unwanted drugs in the toilet or placing them in kitty litter before disposing of them in the regular trash is the best way to get rid of them.
- Synthetic hormones are safe and women should be comfortable taking birth control pills for decades.
- Testosterone can improve libido, stamina, and strength.
- Testosterone causes cancer.
- Excess stomach acid is the root cause of gastric reflux and the best way to eliminate the symptoms is to use a PPI drug to reduce acid production.
- It is safe to use PPIs for years.
- The TSH test (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone) is a valid measure of thyroid function.
- Levothyroxine is the treatment of choice for hypothyroid problems.
- The Affordable Care Act improves health and lowers the cost of health care.
- The PSA (Prostate-Specific Antigen) test is accurate and can establish when treatment should begin – surgery and radiation being popular approaches (because they’re safe).
- Mammograms are harmless and accurate.
- FDA approved drugs are safe and effective.
- Drugs used in the United States are made in the United States.
- The FDA determines if a drug will be available with or without a prescription.
- Exposure to sunlight causes skin cancer.
- Applying toxic chemicals to block UV rays prevents skin cancer.
- Rubbing alcohol gel on the hands will sanitize them.
- Sodium Lauryl Sulfate is a safe detergent.
- Roundup is a harmless herbicide – except for the special plants we want to kill.
- It is important to use toothpaste with fluoride.
- Mercury amalgams (fillings) are completely safe.
- Vaccines safely prevent disease.
- Modern medical science is constantly searching for cures to disease and the cure for cancer is right around the corner.
- Genetic makeup determines whether a person gets cancer – and there’s little anyone can do about it.
- Measles is a deadly disease and it is approaching epidemic proportions this year.
- If you’ve had chickenpox you should also get the shingles vaccine.
- Bisphosphonates prevent hip fractures.
- Bread is the “staff of life”.
- Margarine is a safe alternative to dangerous butter.
- Soy is a safe source of vegetable protein.
- HCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin) causes a person to lose weight.
- Flour bleached with chlorine has no negative impact on blood glucose.
- Daily use of NSAIDs is the only way to relieve chronic joint pain.
- It is advisable to take an aspirin every day.
- Tap water is clean enough to drink.
- Antibiotics are prescribed when a person has a virus in order to protect the person from acquiring any bacterial infection while their immune system is fighting the virus.
- Probiotics are useless.
- Postpartum depression is a psychiatric disorder that is treatable with SSRI drugs.
- The gallbladder, tonsils, adenoids, and appendix are useless vestigial organs and can be safely removed. After a point, the same applies to ovaries and uteruses – but not testicles.
- Red-light cameras save lives.
- Removing your shoes at the airport enhances safety and your nail clippers are a lethal weapon when they are in my possession on an airplane.
- Nobody knows why butterfly and honeybee populations are in decline.
- Flavored commercial yogurt is healthy food – and the Greek versions are the best.
- Artificial sweeteners can safely help a person lose weight.