Pharmaceutical drugs are supposed to help you... not hurt you. Yet every time I turn around, there's ANOTHER report about ANOTHER way these meds can kill you. Here's the latest.

A certain combination of drugs can increase your risk of death. The drugs in this case cut across all classes and categories and include everything from painkillers to antidepressants to antihistamines. But they do have one thing in common: They block acetylcholine, a major neurotransmitter.

British researchers rated 80 meds based on this neurotransmitter-blocking effect, giving one point to drugs with the mildest effects, two for moderate, and three for the most severe. After examining data on more than 13,000 seniors, they found that higher total point combinations led to a dramatically higher risk of death.

Seniors with a combined four points – a severe drug and a mild one, for example -- had a 20 percent chance of death in two years, even after adjusting for disease and other risk factors.

Seniors who took no meds, on the other hand, faced only a 7 percent risk of death in that time.

Bad enough if it ended there -- but it didn't.

Each point beyond the first four boosted the death risk by another 25 percent.

Of course, even if the drugs don't kill YOU, they could still be killing your brain.

Patients with a combined score of five or more also suffered a four-percent drop in brain function. No surprise there. After all, low acetylcholine levels have been linked to cognitive decline and dementia before. I can't help but wonder how many seniors who suffer from the condition would be cured if they just got off these meds...

Don't be another nameless victim in Big Pharma's drug war. Starting today, figure out the anticholinergic load of your own meds and work with your doctor to get off as many of them as possible -- or at least switch to drugs that don't all have the same effect on your brain.

Better yet, work with a naturopathic physician who can get you off your meds completely, and you won't just lower your death risk -- you'll raise your quality of life.