Global Prescription For Recovery From Disease: Chopra and Gerson on Detoxing Our Food Supply

To show us how to take back the planet and our health, this year’s Whole Life Expo brings two of the most exciting and creative people working in food politics and cancer therapy today Health Canada’s Dr. Shiv Chopra, who first saved the Canadian food supply from bovine growth hormone, and Charlotte Gerson who is well known to Toronto audiences for her effective non-toxic cancer therapy (she has also published a fabulous new book).

Dr. Chopra will present his Five Pillars of Food Safety, a campaign to ban, throughout the world, synthetic hormones, antibiotics, and all Genetically engineered seeds and pesticides in agriculture. He has already presented this to various countries and is now taking it across Canada. Both Chopra and Gerson are backed by international scientific research in their assertion that these contaminants are the causes of cancer, most chronic diseases, birth and brain-developmental defects, antibiotic resistance, the so-called hospital bugs, and prion-mediated Mad Cow Disease.

What Dr. Chopra and his fellow scientists, especially in the European Union, want to achieve politically is to detoxify the world and truly nourish humanity – the same prescription which has made the Gerson therapy so successful for cancer patients. At a public forum on November 23rd, Charlotte Gerson will talk about her new book (see review pg. 75) and the ways in which this therapy continues to adapt to counter the increasing toxicity of our environment. Health is dependent upon “eating only foods from which nothing has been removed, to which nothing has been added, and which would go bad if you didn’t eat it immediately,” she says. Dr. Chopra would add that those subtractions of nutrients and additions of drugs, pesticides, and foreign genes are indeed the causes of the diseases which the Gerson therapy treats successfully.


The lifes’ work of these two people has proven that the causes and the Cure of all chronic disease, as well as their prevention, are solely a function of how we treat Nature around us and in our bodies. Consider the 2007 Worldwatch Institute report, which stated that: the raising, maintaining, transporting, processing and marketing of the livestock that produced the 276 million tonnnes of meat consumed in 2006 are responsible for more global greenhouse gas emissions than cars and airplanes combined. Also, almost all the annual global grain production is used for animal feed and uses up the largest portion of water and land. This type of agribusiness, “like a cancer, is consuming the very systems that we need to survive,” observes Erik Assadourian, the report’s director.

In fact, cancer is now no longer a metaphor. Because meat and milk products come contaminated with cancer-causing antibiotics, hormones, and pesticide residues, this disease-promoting diet also turns us into exploitable resources for the medical industry ¬ those drugs, namely, which do not cure but “make the sick get sicker, quicker” (Dr. Sherry Rogers¹ famous phrase) and go on to cause additional environmental contamination in the world’s rivers and groundwater, once they leave human and animal bodies after having done their damage there.

The determined effort of agribusiness toward control of our food supply, sacrificing quality to quantity, is especially pernicious in the food processing industry (the primary cause of chronic diseases which markets nutrient-depleted and additive-poisoned foods and spoils the soil and the water we all depend on). And all this primarily for the benefit of five companies (Bayer, Syngenta, BASF, Monsanto, Dow and DuPont). They control 80% of the world¹s seeds, agrochemicals and agro-drugs whose patents they hold.

When Nature is forced to produce in quantity, it withdraws life supports to become aggressively disease-promoting. Eggs from the mass production egg industry, when compared to free-range birds, have about half the Vitamin E, less than one fourth the Beta carotene, one tenth the Omega-3 content, and a whopping double the cholesterol. Further-more, the quest for profits and market control in agriculture has reduced the cancer-protective trace minerals in fruits and vegetables by 76% since 1940, when the use of synthetic pesticides began (Soil Association report, 2001).

As Gerson’s new book explains, this recent mineral loss further accelerated the degradation of food plants, a process that began 150 years ago with chemical fertilizers. Plants require at least 50 essential nutrients to be healthy and to pass on their health-promoting properties in food. However, fertilizers provide them only with nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus; so we slowly starve on starved plants.

And no, this quantity-focused food production does not feed the world more efficiently, as the corporate propaganda repeats ad nauseam; in fact, as food researcher Ivette Perfecto’s team recently showed in the Journal of Renewable Agriculture and Food Systems, organic farming can yield up to three times as much food as pesticide-dependent patented crops.


Dr. Chopra¹s fight for food safety as a Health Canada drug regulator spans almost four decades. In his forthcoming book, Corrupt to the Core: Memoirs of a Health Canada Whistleblower, he describes his determined efforts to stop carcinogens from entering the food chain, which in turn caused him  to run afoul of the government-supported corporate agenda. Some key dates are significant here:

– On January 6, 1996, Canada’s federal Minister of Health passed an Order in Council (that is: in secret, to avoid parliamentary debate) which transferred the power of drug safety and efficacy to the companies producing them and in essence removed independent regulatory oversight.

– Health Canada scientists fought against this sell-out to the corporations, and Dr. Chopra went public on June 11, 1998, telling Canadians on CTV’s Canada AM that now the food supply in Canada is no longer safe.

– The federal government placed a gag order on Dr. Chopra which he defied, and the government took its own health scientists to court ¬ and lost on September 5, 2000. The court ruled that Health Canada’s civil servants and scientists are responsible to the Canadian people, and politicians cannot shut them up when it suits them and their corporate friends.

– Our government¹s support of the corporate drive to make food and drugs into golden-egg laying geese continued unabated; in 2003 Health Canada presented a report entitled Plans and Priorities which outlined the proposed changes to the Foods and Drugs Act. According to this report the Act had “too narrow a focus on safety” and proposed that what was needed was to “unleash business energies” and “reduce the regulatory burden on industry and business.” The foundation of the Act, known as the government’s “duty to care” for the safety of the public, gave way to corporate-style “risk management.” These two notions are incompatible, as risk management allows for dead bodies and adverse events as being simply part of doing business and does not obey the “precautionary principle.”

– When Health Canada scientists kicked up even more fuss, then Prime Minister Paul Martin fired their “ring-leader,” Dr. Chopra, in July 2004.

That was a happy mistake. Dr. Chopra, a self-motivated man whose lifelong spiritual mentor is Mahatma Gandhi, is incorruptible (“There just isn’t enough money in the Bank of Canada to bribe me with”) and dedicated to science-based public health, and is proving dangerous to business-as-usual.

The decade-long battle Dr. Chopra fought against carcinogenic bovine growth hormone eventually became an issue in the European Union, whose scientists agreed with Dr. Chopra and his colleagues and advised their government against its use. Denmark went further and proved that removing hormones and antibiotics, and not using slaughterhouse waste as food for herbivore food-producing animals, did not result in lower food production. That resulted in the EU banning all of these poisons which we continue to use in North America. Dr. Chopra observes, “Here in Canada it is science versus management. Our governments do not listen to their scientists.”

The result is a crisis in food quality as well as in healthcare. Dr. Mark A. Hyman, editor of the journal Alternative Therapies (July 2007) observed: “The government subsidizes farmers to grow corn and soy crops with $30 billion a year, which fuels the junk food industries with high-fructose corn syrup and trans-fatty acids, which are used to produce energy-dense, poor quality, disease-creating foods such as soda and french fries, the food industry increases demand by marketing these products with $30 billion a year, a tax-deductible expense to corporations, which are in effect further subsidies from our governments. Children then become obese and diabetic in their 20s and require care for heart disease and amputations before they are 30, for which the government must also pay.”

California and Quebec have taken note and banned junk foods in schools, and it may turn out that Quebec will lead the way in stopping all the other garbage too, just as they did when they outlawed cosmetic pesticide use. The Quebec farmers’ union fully supports Chopra’s plan.

The consensus among food scientists is that the hormones and antibiotics used in food-producing animals are complete carcinogens (they cause and promote cancer) because they do not degrade when the animal is killed nor do they degrade in our digestive tract, and they pass into the water and soil to be recycled as poisons. “The rivers of Saskatchewan have dangerously high levels of tetracycline,” says Chopra. Furthermore, because such drugs upset the balance of an animal’s gut flora, we get the curse of so-called “hospital bugs” against which no drugs exist. Today, antibiotic resistance has become such a problem that the most liver-toxic drugs, such as Cipro, and drugs-of-last-resort, like Vancomycin, have become standard treatment. Also Guillaine Barre Syndrome and the ever-increasing antibiotic resistance in harmful bacteria are known to be caused by the unnecessary prophylactic use of antibiotics in food animals.

Campylobacter is a bacteria of the E.coli family which causes diarrhea, vomiting, and even death in young animals and children. In small numbers it is part of a healthy gut flora, but constant exposure to antibiotics has allowed it to proliferate because it rapidly evolved protective mechanisms against these drugs. And Gerson explains in her new book how it has become necessary to stop the use of calf livers (for their cancer-fighting and immune-boosting enzymes) in the Gerson therapy, because even organically raised calves have high counts of this harmful bacterium which they seem to get as embryos through the contaminated water supply.

Mad Cow Disease is caused by prions that increase in number when slaughterhouse waste is fed to herbivores whose immune systems are already depleted by pesticides, thereby increasing chances for this disease to appear. Finally, the immune-disrupting and cancer-promoting properties of GMOs are well-researched and documented, and the use of pesticides is condemned by the medical profession throughout the world.

As for cancer, Dr. Chopra informs us that a woman’s exposure to standard agricultural pesticides during the first 6 days (!) of pregnancy is the most critical time because then the zygote, on its way to becoming a fetus, is “programmed” to be vulnerable to cancer when becoming a fully-formed human.

Dr. Chopra’s plan is to ban all these practices and substances and assert “our God-given right to eat food as Nature makes it.” In fact, he wants Canadian people to sue the Canadian government under the Charter, ¬a legally sound plan. He will discuss the details of how to return to truly safe and nutritious food at the Whole Life Expo, where you can learn how to participate in this campaign.

What Chopra and his fellow scientists in Canada and the EU want to stop in the production of food is exactly what the Gerson protocol removes from the patients they treat, teaching them how to avoid these poisons for the rest of their lives. The food that the Gerson protocol advises patients to eat is the food Dr. Chopra and his colleagues want us all to eat. Come and hear them tell us how we can make this possible. Author Arundhati Roy puts it best: “Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing.”

For more information on the Whole Life Expo, go to


L. Armstrong, G. Dauncey & A. Wordsworth, Cancer: 101 Solutions to a Preventable Epidemic, New Society, 2007

H. Ferrie, Dispatches from the War Zone of Environmental Health, Kos, 2004

C. Gerson & B. Bishop, Healing the Gerson Way, Totality, 2007

M. Shapiro, Exposed: The Toxic Chemistry of Everyday Products and What’s at Stake for American Power, Chelsea Green

Helke Ferrie is a medical science writer with a master's degree in physical anthropology. Her specialty lies in investigative research into ethical issues in medicine and the politics of health. She started her investigative journalism career in the mid-1990s, looking at issues of medicine and environment. She has been a regular contributor to Vitality Magazine ever since. Helke has also authored several books on various subjects including: "Ending Denial: The Lyme Disease Epidemic", "What Part of No! Don't They Understand: Rescuing Food and Medicine from Government Abuse", and "The Earth's Gift to Medicine". Here are links to some of her works: Book Review Find her book -Ending Denial Read her article: When governments abandon the public interest — look out for your own health Find her book -What Part of No! Don't They Understand Helke has also been a regular contributor for the Vitality Magazine. Links to few of her articles: The Tyranny of Government Protection Success Story - How I Recovered from Lyme Disease IN THE NEWS: Fluoride Dangers; Roundup Lawsuits; Lyme Disease Epidemic Helke Ferrie now lives a retired life and can be reached at

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