PART 2 – Alternative Medicine Versus Conventional Medicine

Well one would think that the last post on alternative medicine vs conventional medicine said enough, given its painful length…but were we wrong! Yes…I have warned our readers that once you get me talking about holistic medicine, you better get comfy and sit back – let your dog out first – because it goes on and on. Cannot help it. When you have a dozen years of studying, learning, living and breathing this (plus trying it out on your own body), it is very difficult to squeeze it into one post!

Anyway, we received a comment on our last post from Dave (see his Flip Flop Vector Blog! ). He was asking if we could offer guidance as to where to find an alternative medicine doctor, given many rvers aren’t in one place too long. We will definitely share some info in this post, to help out, but you need to understand the “system” a little bit first…because we are so used to the way conventional medicine works.

So here are the first things to understand:

  1. Unlike conventional medicine, where you can have a primary doctor at home, yet still pop into a clinic anywhere along your route, when traveling in your rv, alternative medicine works differently. You are going to want to choose one, keep your rv there for a bit while testing and getting to know your provider intimately…and that’s about it. So if you have a holistic doctor, then you go traveling about and start to feel ill, you aren’t going to start the process over with a new holistic practitioner in Kentucky. You can still keep in touch with your main doc when on the road, but it is important to work with ONE.
  2. So what happens if you get sick when 2000 miles away from your doctor? Obviously for a broken leg or medical emergency, you need to go to a local clinic wherever you are rving. But in our experience, we don’t run to a holistic doctor for a case of the sniffles. Those days are over. You can call your doc (many allow phone consults) to update your condition, if there are changes concerning you while on the road.
  3. You will have to stop looking for a quick fix. We are trained to have a symptom, then run to a conventional clinic in hopes they relieve the symptom…usually in the form of a pill. A holistic doctor is going to look at your whole body, how one thing may be impacting the next. All of your symptoms will be studied with the goal being to rid yourself of them all. This will take time, tweaking, etc…but the end result is worth the patience required to heal your whole body.
  4. The key to maintaining health involved the immune system. Your immunity will fight germs, bacteria, disease and even cancer. At the end of this post we are putting links to some of the products we researched for years, which have seemed to keep us from catching any colds for years.


We were amazingly lucky to have one of the top holistic MDs in our little NW Montana county…so we didn’t have to search at all. But we can steer you in the right direction and give you some great resources, too.

Our doctor, William Ferril MD, toured the country with the “father” of alternative medicine…Dr. Jonathan Wright. You will see his name referred to everywhere, and with good reason. He has been the most influential force in natural treatments since becoming an MD in 1969. We’re not going to tell you everything here, but will provide links so you can read about him yourself.

This Is The Link To His Clinic And His Bio

Also, his newsletter is fantastic…full of the most helpful information out there.
This Is The Link To His Health Newsletter

If Seattle is just an impossibility for you and your rv itinerary, then here is a good resource:
The American Holistic Medical Association (AHMA)

Some words of warning:

  1. Just like foods in the grocery aisle that say “healthy” when they are nothing of the sort, people throw around titles like holistic, alternative and natural as well. One of the reasons alternative medicine has a negative stigma is because of those using it to make a profit. You have to do your research and find someone, like Dr. Wright, who has been advocating natural approaches for years.
  2. The biased media and panicking pharmaceutical companies love to bury the stories about Big Pharma products that are hurting people while raising fear in alternative medicine therapies. Businesses have a lot to lose, because they cannot patent “natural” products. Bio-identical hormones is the biggie. Synthetic estrogen has been shown to cause cancer, yet Big Pharma tries to get compounding pharmacies shut down. Develop your own opinion and be wary of the messenger 100% of the time.
  3. Not all alternative practitioners are alike. My doctor is also an MD. There are integrative medicine doctors who practice conventional and alternative therapies. Some aren’t MDs at all (and I am not saying they aren’t just as good…they don’t have the bias of mainstream medicine education!). Just know they aren’t all alike…research, research, research.
  4. Nope…your current health insurance (if you have it) will not pay for your consult. The beauty is that you won’t walk out of these offices with $8000 in tests and expensive prescriptions. Consider it an investment in the present, for saving money big time in the future.

So that should cover how to find a holistic doctor. Now we’re going to lay out all of our resources/recommendations out there – and that should cover the alternative medicine on our rv blog once and for all….


So let me ask…do you take over the counter antacids? Have you been “convinced” by your doctor and television ads that our entire country has acquired a rare condition of producing too much stomach acid? It isn’t true…our stomachs provide all the acid we need to get the job done. Your discomfort comes from the type of foods you eat, the quantity and, very likely, food allergies. When you suppress stomach acid, you reduce the acid needed to BREAK DOWN the food properly. What comes along with poor absorption of nutrition? A weak immune system. Dr. Jonathan Wright has been healing these conditions with actually adding acid to aid in effective digestion.

Get these two things, pronto, if you are self medicating with antacids – they are affordable and will change your life. The DGL is taken when we get heartburn, etc.:

This book by Dr. Wright is from when it all began (1979) but the case studies and his approaches are timeless. A great introduction to Dr. Wright (yes, I’ve read it) and to see his work in action, treating patients with various debilitating diseases effectively. A must read. (It is only a penny!) Dr. Wright has obviously written many books…but I like this oldie but a goodie, even if outdated (much has been learned since 1979, of course).

Immune boosters that have worked for us all these years below. We are not wealthy, so keep in mind you can space them out, use 2 one day and 2 the next, etc.

You can buy larger bottles of Grifron maitake mushroom to save money – and I use 1/2 dropper every other day to save on the cost.

You only use a few drops of Oreganol – it lasts forever

Garlic is nature’s antibiotic. If we feel run down, we take megadoses. Otherwise, just one a day.

I drink this every other day, with rice milk, in lieu of breakfast (Jim doesn’t) – absorbing vitamins in liquid form or under the tongue is much better than tablets, etc…especially if your digestion is in flux (a multivitamin could pass right by and not give the nutritional benefits).

Of course, this isn’t all that is in our “medicine cabinet.” We also use milk thistle for our liver, dandelion root (more to follow below regarding cancer research) is another great immune booster. I drink the shake above so I don’t have to buy one supplement of everything (magnesium, b vitamins, C, E, etc…). Our dog, Hannah, even takes THIS PRODUCT and no longer gets UTI’s.

Now some final words……….

Why is it such a stretch to believe nature might not provide all that we need? Jim and I have known about dandelion root and its positive impact on beating cancer for years – actual stories of lung cancer victims beating their cancer. FINALLY a very recent news story sheds positive light on what we learned years ago – a grant was approved to study dandelion root and cancer (in Canada, of course…not the USA). Read The Story Here! Also, just Google “dandelion root cancer” and start reading…you will be amazed. Don’t run out and by some dead dandelion root tablet – the best method is to make dandelion root powder yourself (or buy it from a reputable supplier). We also stumbled on Grifron Maitake years ago – same promising cancer studies. We don’t believe there is a magic bullet – the idea is that these products are such powerful immune boosters, they go to battle on cancer, etc.

I try to live peacefully…and I stopped sharing my information with others because it is a personal journey and I had said more than enough. I was exhausted from trying to spread the news for a decade (Suzanne Somers has worked with Dr Wright…and look at the press she is being given). However, even just last year, someone remembered my emails and referred a friend to share my info…so the message did stick, with some. But, and no offense to the great MDs out there, people defend conventional medicine sometimes like a cult following..that there is something wrong with anyone who would question our modern practices. I just got tired of the battle – I look at all of the over the counter products in everyone’s shopping carts, the cry for affordable health care and prescriptions in a system I stay far away from when possible, the biased media/stigma that keeps everyone from thinking outside of the box…yep, exhausted.

But here I am again…doing a “once and for all” post on this topic – and I feel it again. What really gets me fired up is when alternative medicine is compared to witchcraft, torn apart by biased media and unfairly attacked by Big Pharma (whose meds are often, ironically, the true dangers). Certainly the high tech, conventional medical field has only existed for a second when compared to the length of time humans have been here on the planet. Were the only humans fortunate enough to get “real” medical help having to live only in this past century? That is illogical to me, if you take time to think about it. I want to know why everyone needs so much damned health care, to be honest. Why isn’t anyone asking that question? Wouldn’t the cheapest route being not needing to see your doctor 6 times a year?

So you know, I have had family members with cancer, and lost family members to cancer – and my family has lost their beloved PETS to cancer…but I am always amazed when people get angry and say “modern medicine saved my life!” Of course that is the case and it is wonderful to hear stories like this. Medicine can give you a mastectomy and chemo to save your life from breast cancer (or tests to catch it early). Medicine can relieve pain for those suffering as well. I completely get this.

But here is my point – what I want to know is why children, teens, humans, pets are getting so sick! I’m not talking about infectious diseases that spread around the globe…I am talking about the terrifying incidence of cancer, diabetes, autoimmune diseases in people and pets of all ages that didn’t exist before and, if they did, they were rare cases. I would much rather learn how to PREVENT illness instead of having a mastectomy. I would love more media on synthetic estrogen, its true dangers (given to women, young and old in birth control pills and hormones later in life) and it’s correlation to breast cancers (this is just one example of one illness).

To me, conventional medicine seems to be inventing ways to suppress symptoms or “cure” us from illnesses our current lifestyles are CAUSING US TO HAVE IN THE FIRST PLACE! That isn’t acceptable. I want conventional doctors to stop giving me pills to mask my symptoms and removing body parts and, instead, find out what I am doing that is causing the symptoms.

The human body is pretty miraculous. It survived to this day living in climates without central heating and Columbia down coats. It survived without having to eat every item on the food pyramid (no convenient store to run to or grocery store full of everything under the sun). Yep, even some mainly just ate meat/protein (no offense to vegetarians) and didn’t worry about cholesterol (by the way, a lot of interesting research in why we have food allergies now is, before transportation, we ate what was native to our area – after transportation, we started appearing all over the globe…we are “mutts” now 🙂 ). So that is the only challenge I present here…just stop for a minute and remember, even just 100 years ago, things were very different…how did we get to this point?

I truly understand how modern medicine is saving lives. How young women aren’t dying from cancer because of mastectomies and mammograms. Treatments are saving lives of young children. Life is precious and who wouldn’t celebrate surviving cancer? But it is possible, at the same time, to question what is really going on here. It is possible to believe that we might be causing ourselves to be a very sick society. I’m glad my grandmother beat cancer for ten years (it returned later)…though the chemo tore her immune system apart and she lost both breasts – I sure wish she never had to endure cancer in the first place.

So people feel they need health insurance, and we empathize, because we cannot afford a brief $800 consult for basic care and a quick dose of silver nitrate either (like my previous post referred to). People are giving up their lives so they can afford health insurance, copays, prescriptions. We, too, believe life is precious – much too precious, in fact, which is why we opened our eyes and looked outside of the conventional medicine box. To keep getting sick, spend fortunes in receiving the almighty diagnosis, run to the doctor and receive life long prescriptions or expensive procedures to “manage” symptoms instead of reverse them…that, my friends, isn’t medicine to me.

***Dave, aren’t you glad you commented on my other post? 🙂

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16 Responses to PART 2 – Alternative Medicine Versus Conventional Medicine

  1. boxorain says:

    Interesting topic. I’ve been resonating recently with information in a combination of two books – (the audiobook version of) The Power Of Now by Eckhart Tolle in conjunction with Sanctuary co-authored by Stephen Lewis and Evan Slawson. Was just wondering if these are on your radar?

  2. I have always believed in the alternative medicine approach, although I have never found a physician who practices it. I go to a conventional doctor, but pretty much follow my own instincts. So far I’ve managed to avoid taking any drugs, and have stayed quite healthy. When I was 30, a gynecologist told me I had a fibroid tumor, and that he would have to perform a hysterectomy. I researched it, and decided that the tumor was most likely from eating too much meat because of the hormones in the meat. I went on a vegetarian diet and returned in a year. When he checked me over he said I was good to go. I asked him about the fibroid tumor, and he said “what tumor?”.

    Love your blog – I put it on my blogroll, and I’m now following you. Look forward to your future posts.

    • Cheap RV Living says:

      Margaret –

      Thank you for sharing and for following us, too!

      If I only knew then what I know now – I absolutely believe both surgeries I had, which I struggle with daily because I believe we actually DO NEED our body parts, could have been avoided if I saw the right doctor.

      Look forward to getting to know you!


  3. Nina says:

    Yup…totally with you on holistic and whole care. We went gluten-free 2 years ago (what a life-changer that was…and I never even knew it! 35 years of PMS…gone….30 years of knee pain…gone…just to mention a few) and seek to eat whole, natural, unmodified foods. I do the same for my pets and even run a cat forum dedicated to healing urinary issues in cats naturally. I also keep a small “medicine cabinet” of natural cures including various homepathic solutions which we’ve found very handy on the road.


  4. Christine says:

    interesting topic, one that I love talking about! I do believe that our nation’s habit of genetically (and otherwise) modifying our foods have given rise to cancer and heart disease. Pasteurized and homogenized milk? Toxic. Wheat bred for more gluten to make softer and tastier bread? Toxic. Grass eating animals fed high calorie grain? Not good. We know this but the FDA keeps cramming this crap down our throats and those of our children in the name of “good nutrition”. And they won’t stop, not as long as they are still in bed with the big pharmas, who make money on the pills to treat the side effects of the toxic food…..
    I didn’t know about the dandelion root for cancer, I will have to pass this along 🙂

    • Cheap RV Living says:

      Christene…Thank you for your post.

      Absolutely agree with everything you shared here…100%. People have to really dig to find this information (in NW Montana there was a radio station that held all of the excellent shows about topics just like this…but got shut down for “other reasons”) – and if people don’t want to believe it, they aren’t going to look…so the dangers continue every day. Food is a huge category to discuss…but we have our eyes open wide on the topic, just like medicine.

      What upsets me the most is the harm to the young children today. I’m almost 44, so the convenience food craze really didn’t “stick” with my parents…yes, processed foods existed, but we didn’t have a microwave growing up. We ate “real” meals…a roast, mashed potatoes, fresh vegetable for the majority of my childhood, because that is what my mom was used to preparing/eating in her childhood. But now…the grocery store and people’s shopping carts are so disheartening.

      My daughter was diagnosed with celiac disease when she was two (she’ll be 18 this year) – and though hard for her, she sees the “benefit” was having home prepared lunches (instead of the processed foods in the cafeteria), avoiding gluten, etc…eating more natural than her peers.

      As with medicine, all of this info is buried so deep – and in people’s fast paced lives, the effort involved in finding what is going on out there is unattractive. But it is out there. Even if there isn’t time for fact finding, just stopping for a minute and THINKING about it (is what we are eating real food? does it have nutritional value? what did humans survive on/what did the body need? am I giving my body any true nutrition?) should be enough to recognize something isn’t right here.

      Great post…thanks again

  5. dave says:

    Thanks Robin for the lengthy, detailed response, I will bookmark. Now, go let the dog in!

  6. You know, I’ve been pretty pro-Affordable Healthcare Act, but you make a good point about it leading to more doctor visits. I’m still in the transitional phase of my thinking, it seems. I want people to be able to get healthcare, but I don’t see going to the doctor as a real step in the right direction.

    From what I read, the good mammograms are touted as doing is a numbers game. Then there’s the bad, when they turn women with harmless cancers (I know, it feels weird to write that, too) into cancer patients, with chemo and missing breasts.

    I know. It’s a tricky thing to talk about, isn’t it? I have a good friend who is a survivor, and she feels strongly that the chemicals and radiation and surgeries and lifetime of drugs saved her life, and who am I to argue with her? She walks for the ACS every year. She is terrified about us not having medical insurance. If the tables were turned, I’d be terrified for her, too.

    I just watched an interesting TED talk about eating to starve cancer, if you like that sort of thing.

    OH NOES! I just had a terrible thought! What happens the day we disagree?? 😀

    • Cheap RV Living says:

      Thanks for the post and the link…so much to say to you both (gotta meet up someday).

      I’ll start with your end quote “what happens the day we disagree?” (said in fun, I know). Hopefully we will both LISTEN to each other, LEARN something from each other and GROW as human beings! I have my own opinions and path to take…but I respect the gray areas, other people’s experiences, etc. and their need to go their own way. There is such good that could happen if we all listened and opened our minds. I do not hold all of the answers to the universe (but don’t tell Jim that…or my cat, for that matter).

      It’s just that big business gets in the way of people developing their own opinions so much these days and it is hurting people, I truly believe that. Plus human nature today is to look for the fastest route (take convenience foods as an example). We look for quick nutrition, while watching tv being told there is a pill to make our restless legs disappear…as if it is the most normal condition one could have (um, it isn’t). We’ve convinced parents that getting sugary purple juice in a grocery store that is “enriched with Vitamin C” is some sort of health move…while flooding these kids with sugar. Pharmaceutical companies now advertise drugs ON TV?! Ask Jim what it is like to be in a grocery store with me…looking at carts filled with peanut butter and jelly frozen “lunches” for kids, carts overflowing with soda, sugary cereal “with 10 essential vitamins” – I’ve said before, i feel like I’m living in Stepford. I am not against a Reeses peanut butter cup or a potato chip…but when we start believing “enriched” tactics in marketing mean all of the junk in your cart is “healthy” – that bothers me.

      Let’s talk about your friend now. I don’t blame her and am so happy she survived! The reason I get exhausted talking about this, and sorry to be a bummer, is because the problem seems too big…it really does. Food, air, water, pollution, consumerism, wifi waves everywhere, cell phones…it is mind boggling. Every day there is more, “too little, too late” news like a few weeks ago when the news reported the carcinogens inside microwave popcorn bags. Honest…I think we need to start over on another planet to have a fighting chance! Back to your friend, I have had people I love dearly survive and live longer with chemo, radiation, etc. I cannot blame them, when faced with mortality, for choosing to fight with modern medicine/procedures. I 100% get it and I know these aggressive treatments can and do save lives.

      But my point has always been (or at least I try to push this point in a sea of rambling) that this isn’t enough, it isn’t acceptable, it isn’t medicine. Meaning, we should be looking into WHY we need so much health care as a society – and doing what we can to REVERSE and PREVENT these illnesses to prevent the younger generations from having breasts removed 30 years from now…and playing roulette by destroying immune systems with chemo, radiation, etc. Yes, people survive with chemo and radiation, and many others cannot withstand the treatments and succumb to them. If someone is diagnosed with serious cancer today, by all means they need to go whatever route they need…it is their life and they should fight however they need to.

      But if they started learning about alternatives, medical dangers, prevention and other things instead of once they are diagnosed (honestly, how could anyone have the energy to look into any of this once diagnosed????), maybe things would turn out different? Picture standing in the hot sun for three days, not knowing it could burn your skin. One doctor gives you pain meds and ointments, sending you on your way. The other doctor (my doc) tells you “to prevent this discomfort next time, don’t stand in the sun because it will burn you.” See….I don’t want to just know I got burned (or cancer, or diabetes)…I want to know WHY so I can try to prevent it. I truly believe birth control pills are behind so much breast cancer – hitting women of all ages. If I got breast cancer and beat it, would a conventional doctor ever mention this could have been the cause?

      Why are these STILL our only options as cancer keeps skyrocketing? Why is cancer skyrocketing? If I received mainstream cancer treatment today, I’d be happy to be alive…but I’d be damn concerned that I had no idea why I got it in the first place…and worried it would return. Medicine is big, big business…I only ask people to keep that in mind when they won’t consider even looking into alternatives. Still their choice, but as my doc says “everything happens for a reason.” I would want to know why I got it, to sleep better at night, if I survived cancer.

      That is what I try to do with my life. I’m actually not into working out or jogging, only eating organic and things like that (nothing wrong with it…just never “took”). I’m just doing what I can to keep my immune system strong. Try to think of how people survived prior to these past 100 years and try to just be “normal.” I don’t look at my body as something that cannot work on its own without medical intervention (again, humans survived this long). But it can be too little, too late – I’m exposed to a lot of “unnatural things” – even sitting in front of this laptop. So, again…I don’t hold any key to eternal life…just doing the best I can and always examining the messenger in these times of greed. I just know I won’t give up my life to pay for a health insurance premium – I just won’t.

      Oh and you just HAD to bring up the Affordable Health Care Act :). Again…here we go…all I’m given are two choices in our country? That’s it? That frustrates me right out of the gate…because I don’t like either. Medical costs are ridiculous, you already know my feelings on the quality of our health care…and one appendectomy can make you bankrupt without it! So yes…I don’t wish financial ruin on anyone. But I am absolutely not in favor of big government – and government controlled / mandated health care, a system I do all I can to avoid, absolutely frightens me beyond belief. There are some “modern” vaccinations I absolutely will not get – will I have to, in order to get that appendectomy, to “check” it off the government list?

      I can’t give the solutions – I believe the problems in our society now are just too big. But just because I don’t favor government controlled health care doesn’t mean I support people losing their homes because they were in a car accident without insurance. Neither of those are acceptable choices. Conventional medicine, I feel, is the same…there are no acceptable choices. That is why we got tired of the game and walked away from it…black or white, black or white…and I don’t like either. So just living out our lives, doing the best we can…and wanting to have peace and freedom to make our own choices. That’s all…:)

      • Word.

        Something you said made me think of my colonoscopy doc (what the heck are they…gastroenterologists, that’s it). I have lived a life full of _____ and _____ (foods I tend to think are less than healthful now), like most people, and I had a huge polyp. I asked about risk factors and he said “there are none.” Really? None? Not the Carl’s Jr. burger and milkshake I’m going to get on the way home? Not the pepperoni pizza I’m going to eat tonight? Okay, cool! Not my obesity, either? Even better.

        I didn’t say that to preach about food, but to say that doctors don’t even say what they want or ought to say to their patients, maybe because they think the patient won’t listen anyway. My adorable family doc never once told me I should lose weight. Maybe it was just understood, maybe she thought I might not come back for my physicals if I dreaded a lecture. I don’t question her motives. But, if she thought it once a year, she never said it out loud.

        It’s all too big. I guess I focus on what I put in my mouth because it’s small enough for me to control. Not that it’s the answer, it’s just the only answer I can make for myself.

  7. Another interesting post!

    Have you followed the recent (and growing) repudiation of mammograms by doctors (and women)? Not to mention the bad name Komen is giving itself by overstating mammograms’ importance, and lining its own pockets rather than actually, you know, curing breast cancer.

    • Cheap RV Living says:

      I pride myself on just being myself and not holding back…but I did hold back on the mammogram issue…and thank you for bringing it up! I touched on how I won’t get unnecessarily zapped with radiation at the dentist and that carries over to mammograms, too.

      So I’m in this deep…I’ll just put it all out there…I am so worried about everyone jumping on the universal health care wagon…because they’ll be getting zapped a whole lot more when they are mandated to do x and y to receive care – and those doctors who are open to some alternative therapies won’t be allowed to utilize them. If I want dental care, I will have to have an xray…and this will be the case for children, too…it truly scares me.

      Guaranteed, people will start going to their doctors MORE because THEY CAN AFFORD TO. There was even an article a month ago about children getting more cancer and a connection to childhood CT scans….and don’t get me started about the money the American Cancer Society has been given all these years…oh boy, I’m gonna hear about my reply here…going to get the suit of armor on!

      …and I can’t say breast cancer is cured until the day comes when treatment doesn’t involve removing women’s breasts. I understand, for now, it is the only life saving option offered in many cases – but it certainly isn’t an acceptable one.