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Side-Effects of Prescription & Over-the-counter Drugs

All drugs come with side effects. Even the over the counter type drugs (something as simple as aspirin) can have many side effects, some are minor but others can be life threatening!

These side effects can be inconvenient like an upset stomach and nausea or irritation to the skin. But there are many side effects that can cause serious health problems especially if one drug is combined with another drug that will increase the threat to someone’s life.

Here are some scary Canadian statistics about prescription and over the counter drugs:

Prescription drugs taken as prescribed in hospitals are the fourth leading cause of death in the US and Canada, after cancer, heart disease and strokes. They cause about 10,000 deaths a year in Canada and about 106,000 deaths a year and over two million serious injuries in the US. As many as another 10,000 deaths a year in Canada are thought to occur outside hospitals due to the wrong drug, dosage errors and adverse reactions. One out of four admissions to internal medicine in Canadian hospitals is related to prescription drugs, of which 70% are preventable. Canadians now spend more on prescription drugs ($24 billion) than we do on doctors ($18 billion).

The Canadian Pharmacists Association reported to the Romanow Commission that between $2-$9 billion per year is wasted on the overuse and misuse of prescription drugs.

Since the 1960s, 41 drugs have been taken off the Canadian market, many or most for injuring or killing patients.

Posted by Common Ground in Health, January 2012 – From article in To Your Health newsletter October 2011 by Citizens for Choice in Health Care Association

side effects of prescription drugs

Drug Side Effects:

Side effects can fall into several categories. Allergic reactions can happen with any drug and can range from itching and rash all the way up to a life-threatening anaphylactic reaction. Some drugs can’t help but trigger side effects because of their chemical structure.

Some drugs have barely noticeable side effects when dosed properly but serious problems may occur if your doctor or the hospital does not know what you are using. Side effects may only pop up when certain drugs are mixed with other things, as we know some drugs become life-threatening when mixed with drinking alcohol.

Before a drug is made available to the general public it has to go through many tests but not always do the side effects show up during the testing periods and many times it is not until many years later that the problem show up! Once the basic questions of safety and efficacy are settled, the FDA will approve the drug if it deems that the benefits outweigh the risks.

Here is a list of some of the side effects that come with many prescription drugs currently on the market today:

  1. Drainage, crusting, or oozing of your eyes or eyelids
  2. Swollen, black, or “hairy” tongue
  3. Changes in the shape or location of body fat
  4. Blue lips or fingernails
  5. White patches or sores inside your mouth or on your lips
  6. Irregular back-and- forth movements of your eyes
  7. Enlarged breasts in males.
  8. Hallucinations, fainting, coma
  9. Fussiness, irritability, crying for an hour or longer
  10. Paralysis
  11. A blood clot in your lung
  12. Liver or kidney damage
  13. A lump in your breast
  14. Decreased bone marrow function
  15. Congestive heart failure
  16. Nerve pain lasting for several weeks or months
  17. Bleeding that will not stop
  18. Coughing up blood or vomit

How can we be sure to eliminate some or maybe all of these side effects?

Remember you are the one in charge of what you put into your body! If your doctor suggests you take a drug do some research before you take it, because once you do, it could be too late. If you are using drugs of any kind make sure you read the label, check the list of the side effects (this should be provided), and it is wise to also talk with the pharmacist.

Many drugs do not need to be prescribed at all.

We should first try a lifestyle change to see if we can overcome the health problems naturally by:

  • eating the right food
  • exercising
  • managing stress levels

Taking medication should be a last resort not the first thing you do. It has been proven by thousands of people who have tried the Hallelujah Diet that almost every sickness or disease can be managed or prevented by a Healthy Lifestyle change.

The side effects of living a Vegan Lifestyle will be Better Health!


Veggie Spiral Salad

Easter Spiral Veggie Salad

The Salad

serves 4-6 people

For this salad I used the Spirooli Spiral Veggie Slicer. You can use either or both of the spaghetti slicers – I used the thin one for the carrots and sweet potatoes and the thicker one for the beets.

Cut the following ingredients into spirals:

  • 2 pieces of thick carrots (cut them about 3-4 inches long and 1 ½” in diameter)
  • 1 medium beet
  • 1 small sweet potato

If you find it hard to eat the spirals when they are long cut into shorter pieces as we have done here using your kitchen scissors.

Put the veggies in a large salad bowl and add the following:

  • ¼ cup pine nuts
  • ½ cup diced apple
  • ½ cup raisins

The Dressing

makes 1 cup

Blend the following ingredients in you blender until creamy

  • ⅓ cup of each: apple cider vinegar & extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp stone ground organic mustard
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 clove of garlic (minced)

Pour about ¼ cup of this dressing over the salad and toss before serving. Both the salad and dressing will keep well for 2 days in the fridge.