There are few good authors on women's health issues. Carolyn DeMarco is perhaps the best known, writing prolifically for medical journals like Wellness Medicine and for the general public via The Toronto Star, Today's Health, Health Naturally and many other publications. Given that the system conspires against any deviation from the dogmas of medical orthodoxy, Carolyn's achievements in the grossly neglected area of women's medicine are truly remarkable. When going through medical school, Carolyn DeMarco and I were soundly indoctrinated with the following "facts" about women's health:
- Hysterectomies are the preferred treatments for endometriosis and fibroids, offering sound preventive medicine. After all, beyond childbearing age, the uterus is an unnecessary organ. Removing the uterus may well be a good way to help prevent uterine cancer.
- Episiotomy at childbirth is a routine procedure to ensure the safety of normal deliveries.
- All women entering the menopause must be put on synthetic female hormones to prevent osteoporosis and other effects of aging.
- Nutrition has nothing to do with most gynecological problems.
- The birth control pill is the safest and most effective form of birth control. Natural methods are next to worthless.
- Once a Cesarean section, always a Cesarean section.
- PMS is not a real clinical condition. Most women can be told, "It's all in your head." It should be treated symptomatically with psychotherapy, salt restriction, diuretics, tranquilizers and antidepressants.
- Due to the availability of the most modern equipment and highly skilled obstetricians, the use of midwives and home births is both dangerous and irresponsible. The pursuit of natural childbirth is a myth promoted by quacks. Midwifery is outdated and potentially as harmful as the use of chiropractic treatments for back pain.
- All women should ge ultrasounds when pregnant and mammograms once they reach the age of 40.
In the sixth edition of Take Charge Of Your Body, Dr. Carolyn DeMarco tackles all these issues and many more. With direct reference to medical and scientific literature, she dispels all these cherishly held lies by a male-dominated profession. The underlying theme of taking more responsibility and action for one's health is in itself a step towards greater wellness. Two unique aspects of this book include "A Woman's Health Bill of Rights and Responsibilities" and "Guidelines for Combining Scientific and Natural Treatments." The book is easy reading foreven the most uninitiated in wellness medicine. In researching any health problem, women should consult this book first.
This new edition is almost completely revised with over 100 pages of new information, a complete index and a new foreword by Jane Heimlich, author of What Your Doctor Won't Tell You. Some of the many topics covered include chronic fatigue, the yeast syndrome, endometriosis, natural birth control, natural approach to the menopause, new treatments for endometriosis and fibrocystic breast disease (benign breast lumps), how to deal with PMS naturally, and much more. Dr. DeMarco provides a list of names and addresses of organizations and resources for women for further support.
The jacket cover claims, "This book empowers every woman." I think this is far too modest. Take Charge Of Your Body should be read by every male and especially by every male doctor. Dr. DeMarco's book is a rare opportunity to learn the truth about women's health--no myths, dogmas or superstitions--just the facts and how to act on them to achieve higher levels of wellness. This book is a necessity in every person's home health library.
Zoltan Rona is a well known holistic physician, nutritional consultant, writer, lecturer and author of The Joy of Health (Hounslow Press, 1991) and The Return To The Joy of Health (Alive Books, 1995).