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It's up to us to be informed about what we put in our bodies

Let’s look at the latest statistics about the opioid crisis in Canada. Government stats put it at 8,000 deaths since January 2016.

In June, the federal government finally announced plans to curb the marketing of opioids by pharmaceutical companies. But it remains to be seen how effective public policy will be at reversing this troubling trend. Politicians often take public stands on health issues, then struggle to achieve real and lasting change when going up against big multinational companies.

The consequences of killer fats and pain medications

Just look at the long journey toward banning trans fats in Canada. Earlier this month, trans fats were officially struck from Canada’s food supply – almost 15 years after federal MPs first voted in favour of a ban. That has left us playing catch up with the U.S. – policy makers south of the border already did this three years ago.

The most common forms of trans fat are the partially hydrogenated oils found in packaged foods like pastries, fries, doughnuts, and popcorn.

Trans fats are the artery-clogging killer fats. Canadian researchers have estimated some 12,000 heart attacks could be prevented over the next 20 years by banning these harmful fats from the foods we eat.

The evils of trans fats have been known for literally decades, and yet, only now, do we finally get a ban. And it’s not an immediate ban, either. There is a phase-out period of two years.

Around 8,000 opioid deaths in two-and-a-half years. Some 12,000 heart attacks over 20 years.

Compare that to Chiropractic

Now consider that in Canada and the U.S., hundreds of millions of Chiropractic visits occur each year.

Take a moment to consider that. We are talking tens of millions of patients, of all ages, who make regular trips to their Chiropractors for adjustments. Depending on their individual circumstances, it may be several times a week, or once every couple of weeks.

In all these visits, with all those people, how many patients suffer an injury as a result of that adjustment? A relative handful. And yet, misinformed critics of Chiropractic will latch on to reported incidents of injury and argue that what we do to improve our patients’ quality of life carries excessive risk.

Can you imagine the public and regulatory outcry if chiropractic care, naturopathic medicine, or dentistry had reported incidents of injury and harm with patients at anywhere near the scale attributed to opioids and trans fats?

And yet, doctors still prescribe opioids. Meanwhile, food companies and grocers can still market foods packed with trans fats for another two years in Canada. How many more heart attacks will that contribute to before the last toxic doughnut leaves the store shelf?

Sure, some action, even in the 11th hour, is better than none. It just amazes us that it has taken so long for our elected representatives to finally do something given the evidence.

The moral of the story

Government policy makers do what they can to help, but we can’t assume that they will act quickly, decisively, and effectively enough to protect your health and that of your family.

It’s up to us to be diligent, to do our own research, and decide for ourselves what’s best for our health and what isn’t, based on credible and available evidence. Ultimately, each of us is responsible for our own health with the choices we make, not the government. It’s up to us to be informed.

That’s why our team here at our Kanata Chiropractic clinic strive so hard to keep educating the public on health and wellness, so you can make the best choices for yourself, and your family.

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