A doctor recently told me that in medical school, they only had a few days dedicated to nutrition, and less than that dedicated to the positive effects of exercise. With some reports saying that 80% of medical conditions can be linked to lifestyle, why do doctors spend more time learning about medications than they do nutrition and exercise?
This lack of training for doctors, certainly steers them into the direction of prescription drugs, simply because they know about this topic. Unfortunately, drugs do not change lifestyles, so when a person gets a pill, the underlying issue affecting their health is still present. It is simply masked by a drug. I have said in the past that prescription from a doctor is a “permission slip” to keep living an unhealthy lifestyle.
A big part of the problem is that some patients do not want to change their lifestyle, so a drug is required to improve their quality of life and reduce risk of death. So the doctors can find themselves in no-win situation in this case.
The editor-in-chief for a major medical journal recently said that the same level of quality and scrutiny should be applied to research into preventative medicine (nutrition, exercise, etc.) as has been with prescription drugs. This, in conjunction with added education on this topic in medical school would be a great start to a healthier population.