While the thought of surgery can be scary, it certainly has saved countless lives.
However, in many cases it has been either totally unnecessary, or dangerous complications arose before and after the actual operation.
If you are considering surgery, here are 3 important facts that you MUST know so you can make the best decision for you.
Fact #1: It’s wise to get a second opinion
If surgery has been recommended by your doctor, always, ALWAYS get a second opinion and possibly a third.
That’s not to say that you lack confidence in your doctor. It’s simply a matter of covering all bases—as the old saying goes, two heads are better than one.
Plus there are some physicians who perform surgery simply out of a lack of knowledge or training in a less-invasive alternative…and talking to other doctors might bring that to light.
Fact #2: Surgeries are not always medically necessary
Although practically any surgery can be unnecessary at times, here are 7 which carry a high risk of being done without medical necessity.
1. Angioplasty and placement of stents
This involves inflating a balloon in a narrowed artery to clear plaque, then a wire tube (called a stent) is inserted to help keep the artery open.
When performed during a heart attack, this can be a life-saving procedure, but many times heart disease patients are treated with angioplasty even though they haven’t had a heart attack and/or less invasive treatment could have been an option.
2. Spinal fusion
Disc herniations are common, and one of the popular treatments is spinal fusion.
However, current estimates show that the success rate for spinal fusion is only about 25 percent!
Many people with herniated discs have gotten tremendous relief from non-surgical options like physical therapy, chiropractic treatment, yoga, acupuncture and exercise.
Some studies show that performing a hysterectomy may be unnecessary up to 70 percent of the time.
Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy can be a safer alternative to women with underlying hormonal issues.
Tonsillectomy is typically performed because of a history of repeated tonsil infections (tonsillitis).
Your tonsils are part of a team of immune defenders called Waldeyer’s Ring—along with the adenoids and other lymphoid tissue—that acts as a circle of defense in your throat against bacteria or viruses.
So taking out your tonsils actually INCREASES your chances of getting sick.
A wiser approach may be to explore why you’re getting throat infections to begin with, and beef up your immune system.
5. Knee and hip replacements
Research has shown that in many cases of knee and hip problems, physical therapy alone and/or combined with exercise was found to be just as effective in relieving discomfort as surgery…and at a significantly reduced cost and risk.
6. Caesarean section (C-section)
Caesarean delivery is the most commonly performed surgical procedure in the US and its rates of performance continue to increase.
But C-sections have increased even among lower-risk pregnancies, suggesting that convenience may be a driving force in many cases.
7. Cholecystectomy (Gallbladder removal)
Life without a gallbladder means that you will have trouble digesting fats, which can have several implications including deficiencies in fat-soluble vitamins (like Vitamin D).
Many times gallstones can be dissolved through dietary changes and medications.
Fact #3: Your gut is key to your success
If surgery is deemed the best option, you can help enhance the success of your procedure and recovery by supporting the health of your gut.
Here are 3 reasons why your gut is key:
ANY kind of surgery poses risks, especially infections. According to the CDC, healthcare acquired infections affected 687,000 people in the US in 2015 (the most recent year for which data are shown).
One of the most serious healthcare-related infections you can contract is Clostridium difficile ("C. diff").
C. diff in its mildest form causes diarrhea and cramping, but at its worst it can lead to life-threatening colon inflammation, dehydration, kidney failure and death.
Since your gut houses 80 percent of your immune system, and your immune system protects you against infections, strong gut health is vital if you’re having surgery!
It's common to receive antibiotics after surgery, plus they are the go-to treatment for C-diff.
While they can be helpful, antibiotics also wreak havoc with your microbiome--destroying your helpful bacteria and giving harmful bacteria (like C-diff) the "upper hand."
This can weaken your immune system function and leave you even MORE susceptible to infections and complications!
In order to heal properly, it's vital to not only eat nutritious foods that support your body’s healing efforts, but to make sure that nutrients are being absorbed from your foods and dangerous wastes and medication residues are being properly eliminated.
And your friendly gut flora helps these processes along.
Your gut microbiome is where it’s at!
Clearly your gut microbiome is something you want to pamper, especially if you’re facing surgery!
Here are 4 ways you can help support yours:
1- Stay away from gut-harming foods
Avoid fast food, processed food, sugars, refined carbs and especially soda. All of these feed harmful bacteria and yeasts in your gut.
2- Chill out
Stress causes your gut’s protective mucosal barrier to become less effective at defending against unfriendly bacteria and dangerous pathogens.
There are many ways to help de-stress: Meditation, exercise, taking up a hobby, counseling, deep breathing, prayer and adopting a pet, to name a few.
3- Eat real foods
It's crucial for the health of your immune system as well as your overall health to eat a healthy diet of real foods that your body can efficiently break down and from which crucial nutrients can be assimilated and absorbed.
Focus on consuming good carbohydrates (especially vegetables and legumes), get enough fiber, and have healthy sources of fats and proteins (including real butter, olive oil, coconut oil, nuts, meats, poultry, fish and eggs).
4- Supplement for a healthy gut
When it comes to gut health, nothing beats a helpful daily dose of the crucial beneficial bacteria that are basically your little life-savers!
And Super Shield multi-strain probiotic formula is as good as it gets!
Super Shield’s full-spectrum blend of 13 strains of potent bacteria act to repopulate your body’s own supply of helpful intestinal flora, supporting immune health as well as better nutrient absorption and more regular BMs!
Additional immune support
Vitamins B12 and D are also crucial for a strong functioning immune system.
Vitamin B12 is essential for the formation of the white blood cells that make up your immune system. It’s also a very common deficiency, so supplementation with a top-notch B12 formula like Hydroxaden 2.5 helps ensure you have enough of this crucial nutrient.
And Vitamin D helps to prevent excessive, inflammatory immune responses, such as those that are seen in autoimmune conditions and allergic reactions.
It too is a common deficiency, especially this time of year when sunlight is scarce. But Optimum DK Formula can help ensure your body maintains a therapeutic level of Vitamin D3, as well as its partners Vitamins K1 and K2, and the mineral boron.
Whether you’re facing surgery or not, you can either help your body recover, or help avoid getting sick to begin with by enhancing your natural disease-fighting army—your precious immune system.
To your health,
PS: At long last, my newest book, Want to Lose Weight? Stop Dieting! has been shipped from the printer and will be available this Thursday!