VACCINATIONS: THE CONTROVERSY—Part 3Paul Henderson April 1, 2004
This is part 3 in a 3-part series on the short-term and long-term safety and efficacy of vaccines and ways to boost immunity naturally.
How do vaccination-addicted healthcare practitioners reconcile the fact that we now “need” something foreign to be injected in us to save us when we, as a species, thrived for millenia without them?
Well the first argument is that the world has changed. We live closer together and there are more of us. Decades of environmental degradation, scientific advancement, and globalization has led to strange new diseases, mutations of old ones, and a situation where some see the world as a ticking viral time bomb.
Vaccine promoters respond with anger and frustration at those who question vaccine safety and efficacy. “Prove it,” they say. “Prove that vaccines lead to all these other conditions such as asthma, autism, cancer, etc.” Those who have hesitations about vaccinating their children may question the economic, moral, and/or medical value of vaccines and are left wondering how they can do that. Many concerned people are wondering what happened to the “precautionary principle” whereby drug makers prove to us that their products are safe. Currently the onus is not on the pharmaceutical companies to prove their products are safe. The burden of proof has oddly fallen on parents of young children being strong-armed into potentially dangerous vaccinations.
None of the vaccines historically and currently injected into children have ever been tested for their carcinogenic, mutagenic (mutation causing), or teratogenic (developmental malformation causing) potential. Vaccine manufacturers such as Merck, Connaught, and SmithKline Beecham, freely admit they don’t test for carcinogenicity or mutagenicity. No regulatory bodies require them to so why would they?
It’s important when it comes to vaccinations to not be intimidated by expensive marketing campaigns or anyone putting absolute faith in them as a means to protect you and your family. Just as suppressing symptoms with pharmaceuticals does nothing to address the cause of disease so too does subjecting huge numbers of the population to vaccinations do nothing to deal with true disease prevention. Even if vaccinations didn’t have risks and even if they worked anywhere near 100%, they wouldn’t deal with the primary problem of an unhealthy immune system, whatever its cause.
THE BENEFITS OF ILLNESS
No one wants to see their child sick. Tucked in bed with a fever, maybe covered with itchy spots, the sniffling, crying, not being able to sleep, it can be very stressful as a parent. There is the fearing for your child’s well-being while having to deal with a suffering loved one.
Having said that, long before it was verified by mainstream medicine, folk wisdom taught that when children get certain acute infectious diseases they are not only protected for life against those diseases, they also develop stronger immune systems that protect them against chronic diseases including cancer, asthma and autoimmune disorders. Getting chicken pox as a child is a miserable experience but getting chicken pox as an adult can be dangerous.
It sounds almost farcical now but in another era it was common to have chicken pox “parties” where healthy neighbourhood kids would gather and spend the night with a child who was sick, thus immunizing the lot of them for life. A chicken pox vaccination, if it works at all, does not offer up immunity for life and is one more assault on a young immune system potentially contributing to the development of long-term autoimmune conditions.
Viera Scheibner, Ph.D. author of Immunizations: The Medical Assault on the Immune System has said that there is no need to protect children from these childhood diseases.
“These diseases are there to prime and mature their immune system,” she writes. “Having measles not only protects against measles later on, it has been demonstrated that suppressing measles fever and rash by vaccination leads to cancer and degenerative diseases of bone and cartilage as documented in Lancet (September 5, 1985)…In 1958 there were 800,000 cases of measles and from 1974-1975 there were only 30,000 cases. Today about 800,000 die of cancer each year. Is the upsurge of child leukemia and cancer coincidental with the mass use of vaccines (especially the polio vaccines)?”
A new study published in the February 2004 issue of the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology helps to show how childhood illness can lead to an overall stronger immune system. The authors of the study followed the medical records of 835 children from birth to age one documenting any fever-related episodes. At age six to seven, more than half the children were then evaluated for sensitivity to common allergens such as ragweed and cats. The results showed that among children who did not experience a fever during their first year, 50% showed allergic sensitivity. But only 31.3% of children who suffered two or more fevers in infancy had allergic sensitivity by ages six to seven.
Sadly, the results of this study will lead the allopathic controllers of healthcare policy not to conclude that childhood illnesses can be beneficial to immune response but rather, as study co-author Christine C. Johnson, Ph.D, M.P.H., said of the results, “If we can uncover which environmental factors affect allergic development and why, it may be possible to immunize children against these conditions.” Some will never see the forest for the trees.
SO YOU’RE GETTING OFF THE VACCINATION BANDWAGON — NOW WHAT?
Vaccination does not equal immunization so what does? Well there is no quick and easy answer, just as a vaccine is not a safe or reliable quick fix as disease prevention. The most important reason that diseases were on the decline before vaccines were widely used was a general increase in nutritional eating and clean water. So it is safe to say that a healthy diet is the best fight against disease. As Dr. Joseph Mercola says, those stuck on the junk food diet are leaving themselves open for diseases, whether they get vaccinated or not. “Start focusing now on eating properly,” he says. “That means stop with the junk foods and fast foods, stop with the sugary foods, the processed grains, and the trans-fats.”
In addition, Mercola recommends increasing your intake of essential fatty acids like the Omega-3s found in hempseed, flaxseed and cod-liver oil. And of course lots of fruits and vegetables and if you are eating meat, only free-range chicken and clean naturally raised meats.
OTHER MODES OF IMMUNE PROTECTION
Vitamin C supplements, fruits, vegetables, and herbs like echinacea do wonders to increase immune status but Dr. Gus Tsiapalis, who is concerned about vaccination safety and efficacy at Vaughan Chiropractic, focuses on spinal health. He says that if you have back pain, your immune system might also be weak. The role of chiropractic is to relieve the stress and tension on the nervous system, which in turn boosts the immune system. In addition to the physical health of the nervous system, Dr. Tsiapalis says that stress, busyness in life, and how well we cope with these things are fundamental to overall health. “Most people know that stress levels lead to early aging and death.”
A lot of those who are opposed to vaccinations support a simple methodology to protect against disease. Dr. Andrew Saul, in his book Doctor Yourself says he didn’t get his children vaccinated after he saw what the first two rounds of shots did to his boy.
“Real wellness is the result of healthful living: natural diet, whole raw foods, plentiful vitamins, internal cleansing through periodic juice fasting, ample rest, peace of mind, and appropriate confidence in Nature’s preference to keep us alive and well. If we follow these parameters, the essence of naturopathy, we find inoculations to be irrelevant.”
Dr. Saul goes on to say that living on junk food means you will need to get inoculated, but that won’t solve your problems. “A weakened, polluted body is fertile ground for assorted microbes to multiply…but poison on top of poison fails to get at a root cause of all illness, which is ‘polluted body’ or systemic toxemia.”
Dr. Saul gives an example of the Hunza people in Pakistan who are so healthy they don’t even have names for our diseases but then when they started eating “civilized man’s” foods, they began to contract all our diseases.
When confronted with those who tell him he is being irresponsible about his children’s health, Dr. Saul responds, “We want our kids to be down deep, totally healthy. A well-nourished, near-vegetarian, no-drug, vitamin-supplemented child is a truly healthy child.” But maybe most importantly for parents, Dr. Saul says, “It is not enough to just say ‘no’ to shots. You have to take active, alternative measures to protect your children’s health in their stead.”
In Viral Immunity: A 10-Step Plan to Enhance Your Immunity Against Viral Disease Using Natural Medicines, doctor of Oriental medicine, James Williams lays out a detailed plan to reverse the effects of a viral infection if you have one, and how to prevent one in the first place. His 10-step plan includes some widely promoted suggestions such as stress management, diet and lifestyle, along with other natural ways of combatting the widespread immunological breakdown that he feels has been caused by the stress of modern living, environmental destruction and toxic chemical pollution. Some other elements of his plan include; detoxification, enzymes, oxygen therapy, immune modulators and more.
“A very real threat from emerging viruses does exist and must be taken with the utmost seriousness,” Williams writes. “The possibility that the world could be thrown into a crisis of unprecedented proportions is real. The main question is not if we will have a viral epidemic, but what direction is the current epidemic of microbial illnesses taking?”
While possibly a valid statement it is comments such as this, taken out of context and distorted, that lead to widespread fear and panic. When not fearful enough we can be sure the public health departments will do what they can to whip us into a frenzy. This fear is to some as much a cause of disease as anything else. It is hard to tell people to “just relax” but in essence that is what people need to do.
According to herbalist Michael Vertolli, fear and paranoia of disease can paralyze the immuse system leaving it open to that which is feared. “It’s like rolling out a red carpet for a microbe,” he says. On the topic of dealing with stress, Vertolli and others recommend exercise and sleep. Because of very high stress levels this is often not enough so stress management programs such as tai chi, yoga, and/or meditation are highly recommended. Vertolli also recommends B vitamins for stress taken with a good mineral supplement including calcium, magnesium and zinc. (For a detailed account on more of Vertolli’s recommendations of “Herbs for Immunity” see Vitality November 2003. Also archived at http://www.vitalitymagazine.com.)
But as is always the case, supplements help if you are on the right track already but will do little if you don’t exercise, eat right, and have a positive outlook.
If you are worried about immune response and/or vaccinations the best advice would be to make an appointment with a holistic practitioner. Naturopathic medicine, homepathy, Traditional Chinese Medicine, nutritional medicine, all can help you work on strengthening your immune system without vaccinations.
The growing, and no longer underground, move towards local organic food, a vegetable-heavy diet, and chemical-free meats will have not only the benefits to the individuals eating those foods but will also have a secondary benefit of reducing greenhouse gases, toxic pollution from herbicides and pesticides, and more, thereby creating a generally healthier world leading to less and less disease. This positive cycle is not revolutionary but is rather a global necessity if we want to stave off the serious illnesses from the past, the present, and those as of yet unimagined.
The world is relying on experts and scientific evidence to prove the “statistical coincidences” and hypotheses connecting various vaccines to various diseases. With the massive conflicts of interest at all levels of research and the bullying tactics to those outside the inner allopathic circle it is unlikely this will happen any time soon. The “experts” that government and pharmaceutical defenders rely on wake up each morning in a bed full of well-heeled vaccine manufacturers.
As Dr. Tedd Koren points out, experts told us over the years that, among other things, DDT was harmless, asbestos was safe, thalidomide was safe, and that cigarette smoking is good for you. The vaccination experts may not be lying, but they may not be right either.
Harris Coulter, Ph.D. is a medical historian who reports that bloodletting was phased out slowly in the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century, but medical professionals never stated it was an error. If the mounting evidence against the vaccinations we see today ever amasses to a point where the practice is stopped or at least totally overhauled, we will not likely hear an admittance of wrongdoing. You’ve probably never heard a doctor say “I don’t know” and you’re unlikely to hear them ever admit to the damage vaccinations have caused.
• Viral Immunity: A 10-Step Plan to Enhance Your Immunity Against Viral Disease Using Natural Medicines by J.E. Williams, OMD. Hampton Roads Publishing, 2002. www.viralimmunity.net
• Nature’s Virus Killers by Mark Stengler, ND. M. Evans and Company, Inc., New York, N.Y. 2000.
• “Herbs for Immunity: How to Defend in the Post-SARS World Against the Coming Epidemics” by Michael Vertolli, Vitality Magazine, November 2003.
• “SARS — The View From Here: Holistic Health Professionals Weigh in on Immune Defences” by Paul Henderson, Vitality Magazine, May 2003.
• Dr. Gus Tsiapalis at Vaughan Chiropractic. Phone (905) 850-0909. Visit their website at www.optimalspinalhealth.com
• To find a naturopathic doctor near you visit the Canadian Naturopathic Association website at www.naturopathicassoc.ca (this website also contains the CNA’s position paper on vaccinations and the alternatives)