Agatha M. Thrash, M.D.
All drugs are more or less poisonous, determined by the extent to which they interfere with the metabolic processes. It should be noted that interference in a metabolic process in one system allows the strength of that system to be used by the metabolic system of another part of the body. Ellen White expressed it that drugs never cure; they just change the form and location of disease. In order to be of benefit, a drug will borrow strength from one system in order to help another. Drugs interfere in the enzyme systems and metabolic pathways of cells. Ellen White said that poisonous drugs were coming more and more into use among God's commandment-keeping people. She could have said, and may have done so in some of her writings, that drugs are ever more and more toxic. Most physicians do not recognize this fact, although a little consideration of drug history will reveal that it is true. Physicians generally tend to believe that mercury, arsenic, strychnine, etc. are more toxic than the drugs that we have today. It is a fact, however, that the pathologist sees more organic damage from the very sophisticated drugs of our day than he sees from the drugs of yesteryear.
By definition, a drug is a foreign substance of a poisonous nature. Drugs have "powerful properties." Natural remedies, by contrast, do not exert dramatic and powerful properties, but are characterized by their gentle influences. Drugs always subvert the energy of one system to supply the need of another, yet neither system is benefited. The natural remedies actually treat the cause of disease.
It is common knowledge that drugs are poisonous. It is for this reason that drugs are put under prescription laws, to control the distribution of poisonous materials in our society. Many prescription drugs are declared to be unsafe during pregnancy, and many are known to cause abnormalities of the fetus in animals. Many authorities believe that any drug that will alter the fetal growth can also promote the formation of cancer. We believe this to be a fact with many drugs that are sold on the market today, even several of the antibiotics.
Apart from the toxic effects of drugs, they are generally irritating to the stomach. In any case of the repeated use of any drug, there is an inflammation of the lining of the stomach. In many instances there is an irritation also of the nerves. When the stomach is inflamed, the brain tends to sympathize. Since health of the body is largely dependent upon a healthy brain, we can say that directly and indirectly drugs exert an injurious effect on the body to decrease the level of good health.
Another property of drugs is that they are expensive, and they require special persons to administer them. Seventh-day Adventists have been given the instruction that they should use only the simple remedies that are free to all.
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