Anna Evans

Prescription for Drug Alternatives by James Balch

Embark on a journey into a realm beyond conventional medicine, where the power of natural alternatives takes center stage.

Prescription for Drug Alternatives

The book has gotten 4.03 ⭐️ on GoodReads.

 "This book is essential reading for anyone who wants to take charge of his or her health. Read it to live long and well."
– Hyla Cass, M.D., author of ‘Supplement Your Prescription: What Your Doctor Doesn't Know about Nutrition’

As people seek ways to enhance their well-being and combat illnesses, it becomes crucial to explore various approaches and their implications on individual health and society as a whole.

Embracing natural remedies and integrating preventive measures into daily life can complement conventional treatments and promote a more holistic approach to health. That’s why James Balch, Mark Stengler, and Robin Young Balch shared their knowledge on natural remedies in ‘Prescription for Drug Alternatives’.

Author’s background

A physician of 30 years, James Balch, MD, is the author of ’The Super Antioxidants’ and co-author of the best-selling ’Prescription for Nutritional Healing’ and ’Prescription for Dietary Wellness’.

James Balch (r)

Balch is a member of the American Medical Association and a fellow of the American College of Surgeons. He is an honors graduate of the Indiana University School of Medicine. Balch is also licensed as a certified nutritional consultant through the American Association of Nutritional Consultants.


Dr. Mark Stengler, a licensed naturopathic medical doctor and author, is known for blending alternative and conventional medicine at his clinic in Encinitas, California.

Dr. Mark Stengler (r)

He is board certified in Integrative Medicine and Intravenous Nutrient Therapy. Dr. Stengler has authored thirty books, including best sellers like ‘The Natural Physician’s Healing Therapies,’ ‘Prescription for Natural Cures,’ and ‘Prescription for Drug Alternatives.’ He coauthored ‘Outside the Box Cancer Therapies: Alternative Therapies That Treat and Prevent Cancer’ with Dr. Paul Anderson. Additionally, he shares health insights through the widely read subscription newsletter, Health Revelations.

Robin Young Balch, N.D., is a naturopathic physician and coauthor of Prescription for Drug Alternatives. She is credentialed as a master Chinese herbalist and has expertise in aromatherapy, reflexology, and acupressure.

What is the book about?

This comprehensive and up-to-date resource offers valuable insights into natural alternatives to prescription medications. Covering a wide range of common ailments, including ADHD, allergies, diabetes, depression, erectile dysfunction, eczema, heart disease, headaches, and PMS, the book presents natural, safe, and effective treatment approaches.

The authors compare the pros and cons of prescription and over-the-counter drugs with various natural treatment alternatives, such as dietary and lifestyle changes, as well as the use of supplements and herbal medicines. The back of the book contains cross-references, enabling readers to look up specific herbal remedies or prescription drugs for further details.

This book serves as an invaluable guide for those seeking alternative solutions to improve their health and well-being.

Key takeaways from ‘Prescription for Drug Alternatives’

1Modern people rely on drugs too much

Pharmaceuticals are important in healthcare and save lives for various conditions. However, the reliance on drugs has led to health issues and deaths. In the US, close to $200 billion is spent on prescription drugs each year. Over-the-counter medications also pose risks, with around 16,000 deaths yearly due to nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).

2Natural remedies bring fewer risks to patients than pharmaceuticals

Nutritional supplements have significantly lower risks than pharmaceuticals. Children and seniors are particularly vulnerable to adverse reactions. The FDA’s drug approval system has flaws, with some dangerous drugs entering the market. Several drugs have been withdrawn or received warnings due to severe side effects.

3Don’t take drugs thoughtlessly and always stay alert

The authors provide several rules on how to use modern medicine safely:

  • Educate yourself about any drug before taking it. Learn about potential dangers and benefits, consult your doctor and pharmacist, and know how to deal with adverse reactions.

  • Keep a ‘medication card’ with details of all drugs and supplements you take. Include product names, dosages, start dates, and contact information for your healthcare providers.

  • Be cautious with new drugs and stick to established ones when possible.

  • Learn about drug interactions and discuss all medications with your doctor and pharmacist.

  • Consider replenishing depleted nutrients caused by medications.

4Opt for natural remedies when safe and supported by a holistic doctor

Despite spending more on healthcare than other countries, Americans have a shorter life expectancy. The suppression of natural and holistic therapies in mainstream healthcare may contribute to this issue, not only in the U.S. but also in other countries.

This book recommends dietary and supplement approaches backed by scientific studies and the authors’ extensive clinical experience. Natural medicine has substantial scientific support worldwide. It follows six principles, including doing no harm, using the body’s healing power, finding the root cause of illnesses, treating the whole person, practicing preventive medicine, and educating patients as teachers.

Table of contents

  • Preface
  • Acknowledgments
  • Introduction: How to Use this Book
  • PART ONE: What You Need to Know about Pharmaceutical Drugs
  • 1. Drugs: The Good and the Bad
  • 2. Natural Medicine: A Necessity for Good Health
  • PART TWO: Pharmaceuticals and Their Natural Alternatives, Condition by Condition
  • 3. Acne Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 4. Allergy Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 5. Antacid and Reflux Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 6. Anxiety Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 7. Atherosclerosis and Coronary Artery Disease Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 8. Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 9. Blood Pressure Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 10. Cholesterol Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 11. Common Cold Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 12. Depression Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 13. Diabetes Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 14. Eczema Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 15. Erectile Dysfunction (Impotence) Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 16. Glaucoma Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 17. Headache Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 18. Herpes Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 19. Hypothyroid Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 20. Menopause Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 21. Obesity Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 22. Osteoarthritis Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 23. Osteoporosis Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 24. Premenstrual Syndrome Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • 25. Prostate Drugs and Their Natural Alternatives
  • PART THREE: Resources
  • A–Z List of Nutritional Supplements
  • At-a-Glance List of Pharmaceuticals
  • Commercial and Generic Names of Common Pharmaceuticals
  • Glossary
  • Holistic Doctor Associations
  • Recommended Reading
  • Index

Strengths and weaknesses, according to readers’ reviews


  • Well organised structure. The book is organised by diseases, and each chapter focuses on a specific condition. In each chapter, you’ll find information about common medications and alternative treatments. They discuss the benefits, side effects, and more for each medication and alternative option.

  • Offers valuable suggestions and tips.

  • Simple and easy to read.


  • Some readers were not happy with the size of the book. The physical version is excessively large, and the information inside is unnecessarily spread out, making it less convenient to handle or read.

Best quotes from ‘Prescription for Drug Alternatives’

“Astoundingly, Americans spend close to $200 billion each year on prescription drugs. This number does not include over-the-counter medications. The United States is the world leader when it comes to popping pharmaceuticals.”
“...106,000 patients die each year from adverse reactions caused by drugs administered by medical professionals. In addition, 5 percent of hospital admissions are due to adverse drug reactions.”
“Get educated. Read as much information as you can on any drug before taking it. Learn the possible dangers and weigh them against the potential benefits. Ask your doctor and pharmacist about their experiences with patients who have used this medication. Find out whether to take the drug with meals or on an empty stomach, side effects to watch for, and what to do in case of an adverse reaction.”

Final takeaway

Prescription for Drug Alternatives’ is an essential and comprehensive resource written by acclaimed specialists. This book caters to people seeking safer and more natural alternatives to prescription medications. It addresses the growing demand for complementary and alternative medicine in the healthcare sector, providing insights into various health conditions and the potential benefits of alternative treatments. With extensive clinical experience and scientific references, the authors emphasise the importance of educating readers about the effectiveness and safety of natural medicine. The book serves as a valuable guide for readers who aim to strike a balance between pharmaceuticals and natural remedies to achieve better health outcomes.

Where to buy

You can buy ‘Prescription for Drug Alternatives: All-Natural Options for Better Health without the Side Effects’ on Amazon, where it’s available in paperback, hardcover and Kindle formats.

Healthypedia FAQ

Natural remedies use plant-based products, herbal preparations, and lifestyle adjustments to promote healing and well-being. They are often considered gentler on the body and may have fewer side effects compared to pharmaceutical drugs.

Use drugs responsibly by educating yourself about their effects and potential risks before taking them. Always follow the prescribed dosage and instructions from your healthcare provider. Avoid mixing drugs without professional advice, and never use drugs for non-medical purposes. Keep track of the medications you take, and be aware of any potential interactions or side effects. If you have any concerns or questions, consult your doctor or pharmacist for guidance.

This book explores natural alternatives to prescription medications for various common ailments, including ADHD, allergies, diabetes, depression, erectile dysfunction, eczema, heart disease, headaches, and PMS. It compares the benefits and drawbacks of conventional drugs with natural treatments like dietary changes, lifestyle adjustments, supplements, and herbal remedies. An invaluable guide for those seeking alternative health solutions.

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