Do You Trust the Latest Medical News? This Might Surprise You!

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Lyle: Dr. Klatz, recently in the New York Times, there was an article that implied that we really don't need to supplement with vitamin D and also that we have enough calcium.  We don't need to take calcium.  How much responsibility is there for someone to run an article like that?  You never hear the other side of it and how does that happen?

Dr. Ronald Klatz: Well, unfortunately Lyle, we live in a time where the media is mostly bought and paid for.  You know it's an illusion to think that there is free press any longer in the United States.  The vast majority of articles are driven or written or paid for by the industry it affects.  You know, not that I'm against the pharmaceutical industry, I think that pharmaceuticals have their place and they're very important and they've saved millions of lives.  But let's face it, the media receives income of 4 to I've heard as high as 5 billion dollars a year of income from the pharmaceutical industry.  That makes them the largest purchaser of media in America.  And so if a significant amount of income is coming from a particular client, you're going to want to make them happy.

Also there's an issue of articles, scientific articles being penned by ghost writers.  And this is in the media as well where certain companies have articles and positions that they want to have placed and they have them penned and they just put one of their physicians names on top of the article.  So the articles comes out, and that way they're able to skew public opinion.

Now with regard specifically to vitamin D and to calcium, I think you have to always measure, you have to weigh the evidence.  There are hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of papers, ok, from good, respected researchers that say that a large percentage of people have a vitamin D deficiency.  Especially blacks and especially people living in the northern climates, ok, where they don't get enough sun.  And people who even live in the southern climates who don't go out in the sun, or wear clothes all over their bodies where they can't get direct sun exposure.  These people tend to have lower levels of vitamin D.  And there's also hundreds of papers on calcium, the benefits of calcium supplementation.   So when I see a paper, a single paper coming out and saying, nah, nah, nah, nah, don't pay attention to those hundreds of papers before, pay attention to us, and it gets headlines in the New York Times, well, I kind of scratch my head, and I wonder, and I say, does it meet my balance test?  And no it does not meet my balance test.  And when you read the paper, at least the paper on vitamin D, it's really talking about a range.  And it's saying that most people are within the range.  But what they don't tell you is, when they say they're within the range, they're in the lower range.  They're not in the upper range.  And it's like RDA, recommended daily allowance.  RDA's, many people do not have a deficiency of RDAs, but they're sick just the same.  Or they're not optimally healthy just the same.  The difference between having just enough to be within the range of RDA or having the optimal amount, is quite the difference.  Often times 2, three hundred, five hundred percent difference.  So in this paper, they're talking about the range of vitamin D.  And I suggest the range that they're talking about is too low for optimal health.  But they're calling it... they're saying it's ok, because the majority of people are within the range.  But the range is measured at very low levels.

Lyle:  Do have these same kinds of programs aimed at the medical community?

Dr. Klatz: There's an awful lot of disinformation out there, unfortunately.  And it's, the problem is is that the media is not doing their job.  The media... freedom of the press was created by our forefathers and the constitution for the purpose of the press protecting the public and providing the public the truth and being able to be watchdogs of industry that's gotten too big or too powerful or government that's gotten too big or too powerful.  Well we know that these situations in some cases occur.  And so... because of that, because the media is not doing their traditional job of providing accurate, honest, fair reporting, balanced reporting, reporting that goes beyond the headline that actually does the analysis.  I mean how many times do you turn on the TV and you hear an in depth analysis of the news?  It's gone?  It hasn't happened since the Vietnam War.  There's no more people like Cronkite or Eric Sevareid or any of these other news commentators who did a deep analysis of the news.  It's not there.  Because all we get is headline news.  All we get is soundbite news.  And it's very easy to deceive the public if you only read the soundbite. 

Lyle: Where would you suggest the average consumer could go to learn or get the information behind what the real story is.  

Dr. Klatz: If the consumer wants to know the truth, if the consumer wants to be protected, he has to do his homework.  And by doing his homework, you have to go to multiple sources.  You have to read past the headline.  Don't read one article, read multiple articles.  And read multiple articles not from the same paper, but from different papers and even from alternative health, or alternative news services.  I get 80% of my information off the internet from alternative news services.  Because I cannot, and I'm sorry, I'm sorry to say this, but I cannot trust mainstream media to tell me the full and honest truth.  I often have to at times go to news services from outside the country, from over seas.  If it's you know, pharmaceutical information I have to go to professional societies to read their analysis.  I have to go to even competing organizations to read their analysis.  You have to get it from at least three different sources.  And not three sources in the same publication or in the same field.  One has to be from here, one has to be from there and one has to be from here, in order to really get an in depth, honest view of what's going on.  Or you have to listen to someone you trust.  And that's someone who does do their homework and someone who's a commentator such as yourself, who looks deeply into these issues.  Or someone such as... my favorite source is of course is the  w-w-w-dot-worldhealth-dot-net, which is the official website of the American Academy of Anti-aging Medicine.  We publish Longevity newsletter, which is an electronic magazine that in fact reports on the latest news and does analysis as well.

Lyle:  Your current A4M meeting, yearly meeting here in Las Vegas.  We're in Las Vegas today.  There are 5 thousand people attending it.  Those are 5 thousand people who want the information.  They use that website.  So basically, hopefully as things go along, those are things we can ask our doctors.  

Klatz:  Absolutely.  And it's not just 5 thousand people, it's 5 thousand health professionals.  A vast majority of them, 90 percent of them are practicing physicians.  So, in reality, the American Academy of Anti-aging Medicine is responsible, ah, right now we have 22 thousand... 24 thousand members worldwide in 110 countries.  And we have, at this conference, 5 thousand attendees.  And we've trained over 100 thousand physicians all around the world in the new science of anti-aging medicine.  And as part of their training is their ability to critically analyze the news that's coming out in health care and the papers being published.  And our doctors get a much broader view.  They're, these are not guys that just read the headlines.  These are guys who read the whole article.  And also go to other places to read the analysis and to read the rebuttal of those articles.  Again, it's a question of balance. You have to be able to balance the information and say, you know, where is truth?  Truth is usually somewhere in between.


Dr. Ronald Klatz explains some of the issues with getting health news from mainstream media. Find out why there is often so much misinformation and where the source of the information might actually be coming from.

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