May 6, 2009

I don’t know about the rest of you that are unfortunate to be EDUCATED like myself but I think I’ve had just about enough of the hoopla around the FEAR MARKETING backing ailments that sound very scary but really are not.

But what REALLY busts my hump is that they don’t even care if they are DAMMING the cure just for the sake of FEAR MARKETING.

First we have the fun headline that was the #1 punching bag until the “swine flu” came along:

“The key to avoiding 
skin cancer: ‘Sun is the main cause’

Avoid the sun and avoid skin cancer eh? Well what about Vitamin D? Your body produces this when you are exposed to the sun which (in any-other case) would make it a “pro-hormone” not a vitamin but whatever. I’m not a Doctor so maybe I don’t understand.

Then we get this headline:

Critically Ill Patients Lack Vitamin D

Critically Ill…that sounds pretty bad. REAL BAD.

So what is a person to do with 2 conflicting headlines. Either you get skin cancer and Vitamin D or you don’t get skin cancer and Vitamin D BUT you are at risk of becoming “critically ill”.

This brings me to what I like to call DAILY ROUTINE MORTALITY RATE.

This is simply how many people die per year based on doing things that are required to get through a typical day.

Doing a search on my pal Wikipedia there is something called the crude death rate which is the total # of deaths per year per 1000 people REGARDLESS of how they died.


In the United States (which happens to be about the same as the world average) it’s 8 people per 1000 per year meaning about 2,400,000 people die a year in the USA REGARDLESS (300M total pop/1000 x 8).

According to the World Health Organization on their list of reasons people died and the mortality rate there are about 80 ailments SKIN CANCER/Melanoma is #75.

Only Hepatitis C, Leishmaniasis, Trypanosomiasis, and Benign prostatic hyperplasia are less of a risk (so to say) and they are ailments that only the good Dr House would be interested in.

Mortality rate for all skin diseases is 1.1people for every 100,000 in the world which if the population is 6B (6billion / 100,000) * 1.1 is 66,000 people die of some sort of skin disease IN THE WORLD every year.

But that’s still a lot of people right? I guess that depends if it falls above or below DAILY ROUTINE or not. Let’s pick something that would fall under this heading.

Driving a car I would think qualifies.

Well the mortality rate for ROAD TRAFFIC ACCIDENTS is 19.1 for every 100K.

Meaning that (6B/ 100,000 = 60,000 * 19.1) = 1,146,000 VEHICLE RELATED DEATHS EVERY YEAR not because people are working too hard but JUST GETTING TO WORK is killing them before they get there.

Should we have a WAR ON GOING TO WORK????

Ok, car accidents might be too easy. There’s a lot involved there and we are probably doing the best we can with the TV screens they are installing in these things…

So what else? How about something that falls under “CRITICALLY ILL”?
That would be something I think people would be behind a cure for. But what qualifies as Critically ill?? From what I know (and that may not be much) it means you are suffering from something that will kill you unless drastic measures are taken, transplant, transfusion, miracle, whatever.

Now if we look at the Causes of Death Rate again you’d notice that the top 5 on the list would qualify someone as CRITICALLY ILL and they are:

1. Cardiovascular diseases
2. Infectious and parasitic diseases
3. Ischemic heart disease
4. Malignant neoplasms
5. Cerebrovascular disease

So if the main causes of death in the WORLD happen to people with low Vitamin D levels, don’t you think that it would be “worth the risk” of getting skin cancer that NO ONE dies from (#75 out of 80 on the list) to avoid the TOP 5 CAUSES OF DEATH?

Funny, I don’t see SWINE FLU on that list anywhere yet the best way to avoid it is with HIGH LEVELS OF VITAMIN D.

Bottom line, if the AILMENT IN QUESTION does not fall ABOVE other causes of death that qualify as DAILY ROUTINE (driving, falling down, drowning) then it CANNOT and SHOULD NOT have ANY MONEY WASTED ON IT until we figure out a way to cure the CRITICALLY ILL which is clearly more of a problem than skin cancer…ok ok that would be too difficult….let’s cure DEATH BY FALLING first as it’s responsible for 6.1deaths out of every 100,000 in the world.

The end.



  1. […] seems that there are a LOT of things that we are involved with during our DAILY ROUTINE that also fall under this Group 1 Classification as a Known Carcinogens. Coke production? Is this […]

  2. I like the idea of putting risks in perspective. One note though on swine flu: while I agree this seems overblown today, if you consider the flu pandemic from 1918, the flu risk is not as low as you suggest. The mortality from that one year, spread over 100 years, is a staggering 25 per 100,000 or so (the crude death rate was 50 million divided by 2 billion or less global population, or 2.5%, or 2,500 per 100,000. Just one such pandemic per 100 years would be 25 per 100,000.

    The black plague, spread over a millenia, still amounts to a death rate of about 30 per 100,000 (assuming 30% of Europe’s population killed.) These outlier events are not trivial.

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