NEW YEAR – New Hope for Improving Public Health with Nutrition and Natural Therapies

Natural health is growing increasingly popular as conventional medicine’s disease-for-profit model is exposed and abandoned (Shown here: Helke Ferrie and her grandson)

Fifteen years ago, finding “the good” in medical research was very much harder than it is now – but it existed. Today, the conscience of medicine appears to be rising from its ashes. In the 1950s and ’60s, the leading medical journals published superb research showing how even the worst diseases can be prevented and treated with methods that often rely on nutritional medicine, and do not involve synthetic drugs. Those published cures of polio, cancer, and infection (without antibiotics) were never disproven, they just mysteriously became unfashionable.

Starting in the 1970s, the spin and industry-funded propaganda announced more and more miracle drugs. By 1978, pharmaceuticals were traded on the stock market and now sickness (not health) became a commodity. Inhibitors, promoters, catalyzers, gene modulators, hormone mimickers, balancers of fantasized chemical imbalances, and poisoners of enzymatic pathways to control symptoms of unknown origins became the standard. Almost everybody got sucked into this high-tech disease-for-profit mythology.

Doctors unwilling to praise this development as being good, and who remained far from the madding crowd, were marched into disciplinary trials in the U.S. and Canada, usually losing their licences in spite of no patients being harmed and some even being cured. Some managed to survive, especially in universities, and carried on good research that helped people.

It is instructive to recall Hans Christian Andersen’s tale, “The Emperor’s New Clothes.” In it, a child exclaims that the emperor in the parade is buff naked and everybody else agrees, but “the emperor thinks to himself, ‘I must go through with this procession.’ And so he held himself a little higher, and the chamberlains held on tighter than ever, and carried his train which did not exist at all.”

The medical profession had been carrying on a similar exercise in self delusion for decades, that is until the delusion was blown apart by an explosive statistic in 1998.  The powerful aftershocks of this have continued ever since; and this seismic activity has been reported by me during many years spent writing for Vitality.

Explosive Statistic

In 1998, the University of Toronto’s Bruce Pomeranz and his team published evidence in the Journal of the American Medical Association that properly prescribed drugs, taken as directed, had become the fourth leading cause of death in America. This explosive statistic had been obtained directly from the U.S. FDA’s own enormous database. By 2007, when the next large-scale analysis of pharmaceutical outcomes was undertaken, deaths and adverse events had increased 2.7 fold and a public health disaster was recognized. In January 2013, the Institute of Medicine published a report showing that even wealthy Americans are sicker than people in the 16 most affluent countries. The U.S. also spends far more money on healthcare than any other country.

In his 2012 book Unaccountable, Dr. Marty Makary, a Johns Hopkins School of Medicine researcher, shows how mining sickness for profit makes everybody “unaccountable” – hence the book’s title. The book goes on to outline a description of how hospitals are a major cause of death, and how at least 30% of  conventional ‘healthcare’ is unnecessary and leads to deadly harm. Almost half of what doctors do is not in synch with the published research evidence, and the resulting mistakes are the fifth leading cause of death – prescription drugs stand at second, depending on which data bases are consulted. The cause? “The corporatization of health care. We need to change the culture of medicine,” says Dr. Makary.

On Toxic Testing and the Corporatization of Medicine

A major contributing cause of death is known to be overdiagnosis (actually: misdiagnosis) from tests that claim to serve “prevention”  – including the PSA test for prostate cancer, and mammography screening for breast cancer. Both of these tests  have resulted in many false positives and unnecessary surgeries. Furthermore, the risk of cancer has been proven to increase in women who get regular mammographs, due to repeated exposures to radiation. (The levels of radiation have now been reduced after U.S. radiologists themselves raised hell about it. The level are still too high, though – radiation on human tissue is bad, period.) In fact, one of the many seismic shifts in medicine occurred when the Canadian Medical Association Journal published an editorial by Cochrane Collaboration researcher, Peter C. Gotzsche, on October 22, 2011, in which he stated: “The best method we have to reduce the risk of breast cancer is to stop the screening program.”

The drug, medical device, and testing industries – as well as the food and chemical industries – have succeeded in corrupting prescribing behaviour, medical guidelines, entire medical specialty groups, and the government and professional regulatory authorities. These industries also “support” patient support groups. For example, the American Association of Pediatrics openly invites corporate sponsorship, endorses corn syrup products and their manufacturers, and now is fighting at the international level to stop the removal of mercury from vaccines and other medicines. Similarly, Health Canada protects the proprietary rights of ADHD drug producers despite the growing number of children who have died from taking these drugs. (Note: Adults don’t die from ADHD drugs, but 600 kids in Canada have died in the past couple of years alone!)

Meantime, medical journals continue to run drug advertisements. But thankfully, journals such as PLOS Medicine that don’t accept drug ads have overtaken the others in prestige and readership. PLOS is now the biggest science journal in the world – and the most respected because its editors take on all sacred cows and (so far) cannot be bought.

In medicine, business as usual is no longer an option: there are too many dead bodies and the carnage is too expensive. So, for example, America’s largest insurance group, Kaiser Permanente, began conducting the Adverse Childhood Experience (ACE) study. ACE has produced more than 60 major research papers showing how much more financially efficient and effective psychiatric intervention can be when first considering one of the major sources of mental health problems – emotional trauma – before handing out ultimately ineffective, almost certainly toxic, and very costly drugs.

Separating Fact from Fiction

In September 2012, PLOS Medicine published an investigation into the misrepresentation of clinical trials in press releases. Comparing 498 press releases with the published facts in those described trials, they found that half the releases were total misrepresentations. Alarmingly, “the main factor associated with the ‘spin’ in press releases was the presence of ‘spin’ in the article abstract conclusions” themselves! The data in the article did not correspond to the “spun” conclusions – so the press release repeated those, and the profession was fed spin. The moral of the story is that doctors (and the media) should read the articles, not rely on abstracts, and that press releases are best ignored.

In the spin that we are all exposed to, we find myths and truths that are exploited most effectively.

FICTION: There is no research on natural therapies because they can’t be patented.

FACT: The published and ongoing research into non-drug therapies is immense and totally mainstream.

FICTION: Finding effective and safe alternatives to synthetic drugs is very difficult because only pharmaceutical drugs are subject to properly conducted and controlled trials; nutritional and complementary therapies supposedly do not meet that mandatory regulatory standard, therefore, their safety and efficacy is “unproven.”

FACT: The regulatory system does not ensure drug safety or efficacy. The whole drug approval process is anything but transparent; verifying the raw data of clinical trials is virtually impossible, because those data and the main ingredients of drugs are considered proprietary information.  And getting the FDA or Health Canada to put warning labels on drugs is near impossible. You will hear again and again about some famous drug (e.g. Lipitor, Premarin, Prozac, Avinda, Vioxx, etc.) that upon deeper investigation has been found to cause horrific side effects ranging from suicide, cancer, liver failure, brain shrinkage, and diabetes – to murder.
By contrast, nothing even remotely like this has ever happened with an essential nutrient. Ever heard of a researcher discovering deadly side effects of vitamins, no matter at what dose, resulting in black box warnings?

FICTION: What we have heard in the past few years is that vitamin E and selenium will cause cancer, that multivitamins will kill older women, and that taking omega-3 essential fatty acids will promote heart disease.

FACT: Every one of those studies can be proven to have been produced by industry stooges, and every one gave trial participants doses of those nutrients lower than even the antiquated RDA suggests. (See details in my annotated sources below.)

FACT: Among the industry-useful truths is the ignorance of doctors – who are kept that way through industry-controlled continuing education. Former two-decade-long editor-in-chief of the New England Journal of Medicine, Dr. Marcia Angell, makes it clear: “There should be no relationship between the drug industry and prescribers or patients. The fact that drug companies pay doctors to be educated underscores the true nature of the transaction. Students generally pay teachers, not the reverse.”

FACT: The most important industry-serving truth is: “Drugs are effective.” Yes, many are, just sufficiently over placebo to pass low regulatory hurdles, and tested for only a few weeks so serious problems are likely to be rare and can be hidden in those proprietary raw data. For example, cholesterol-lowering drugs do lower cholesterol. They also give lots of people heart attacks by lowering blood levels of Coenzyme Q10 – side effects which show up only in the long term studies.

The “whole truth” about pharmaceuticals takes time to emerge. By contrast, the whole truth about the curative properties of essential nutrients is already well known. This prevents research institutions from permitting trials in which the control group members are deprived of those nutrients because this would kill them. Therefore, only outcome studies of such therapies can be legally undertaken.

How Nutrients Stack Up Against Drugs

Science which is obedient to the whole truth helps people greatly – also in the long run. Here are some examples:

  • Colorado University oncologists compared chemotherapy with grape seed extract for stage IV colorectal cancer, and reported that grape seed stopped the cancer.
  • Vitamin D3 has now been shown effective in one of the most progressive types of breast cancer: “In research published in the Jan. 21 issue of The Journal of Cell Biology, a team led by Susana Gonzalo, Ph.D., assistant professor of biochemistry and molecular biology at Saint Louis University, has discovered a molecular pathway that contributes to triple-negative breast cancer, an often deadly and treatment resistant form of cancer that tends to strike younger women. In addition, Gonzalo and her team identified vitamin D and some protease inhibitors as possible new therapies and discovered a set of three biomarkers that can help to identify patients who could benefit from the treatment.”
  • Highly diluted peanut protein taken under the tongue desensitized 70% of peanut allergy patients. (I know three doctors who were taken into discipline for doing this.)
  • Plants are now starting to be used in successfully treating diabetes, and vitamin D has become the most studied substance with 16 major research papers out in 2012 alone. Meanwhile, diet sodas (aspartame) have been proven to be brain-toxic. In January, gynaecologists promoted the use of herbal treatments for menopause problems over the toxic drug HRT, in their flagship journal.

Link Between Vaccines and Autism Undisputed by Courts

In December 2012, U.S. courts awarded the 84th family, whose children became autistic after MMR shots, nearly a million dollars and recognized the causal connection. The journal of Human & Experimental Toxicology on April 24, 2012, published the actual numbers of “hospitalization and mortality among infants by the number of vaccine doses and age, based on the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System” for the period 1990-2010. Conclusion: the more vaccines, the more dead kids.

Another study has shown that the whooping cough vaccine is becoming ineffective. Meanwhile, in January 2013, the Journal of the American Medical Association seemed to be unaware of the vaccine death statistics cited above, and opined, without proof, that more kids will become sick because almost half of all U.S. children have (I say: intelligent) parents who don’t comply with vaccination hype.

Growing Public Unrest

On January 15, long-time anti-Big Pharma activist MP Terence Young joined Prozac-whistleblower Dr. David Healy, along with York University’s public policy professor Joel Lexchin, and patient advocate Dr. Sholom Glouberman at an event sponsored by the Patients’ Association of Canada at Toronto’s Art Gallery of Ontario. Drug toxicity and the near total lack of public accountability by Health Canada were the main topics. Dr. Healy observed that doctors used to relate to their patients therapeutically, but “the magic … has moved into the pill” – and both are deceived. MP Young, whose daughter died from a toxic drug now off the market in Canada, observed that “People just can’t handle the truth that their doctor would give them something that could kill them…. this is willful blindness.”

Below are reliable resources to consult before any diagnoses is accepted or prescription is filled. They will open your eyes and help you find what is good.


Below is an annotated source list listed in sequence of discussion in the article by Helke Ferrie for Vitality’s February 2013 issue.


Examples of excellent medical outcomes published in mainstream medical journals include Dr. F.R. Klenner who in the 1930s and ’40s cured polio in children with intravenous vitamin C long before the vaccine was created; he also cured various autoimmune diseases and untreatable viruses and published the results in the 1950s. To obtain a full list of his publications go to Townsend Letter for Doctors and Patients 2005 where a 2-part series was re-published on his work with a full bibliography.

A second excellent source for the successful treatment of anaphylaxis, allergy, infections like double-sided pneumonia, etc., without the use of antibiotics but the use of autogenously produced vaccine (made from the patient’s white blood cells) go to the magisterial work by Dr. Theron Randolph (taught at Chicago University): Environmental Medicine – Beginnings & Bibliographies of Clinical Ecology, 1987.

Dr. Max Gerson’s books from the 1930s on curing cancer and his bibliography published in mainstream journals in Germany and the USA are available through the Gerson Institute. See A Cancer Therapy: Results of Fifty Cases and the Cure of Advanced Cancer, 1958. These cases were presented before the US Congress.

For successful treatments of even the most severe types of schizophrenia see Dr. Abram Hoffer, Adventures in Psychiatry, Kos 2005. Dr. Hoffer was professor of psychiatry at the University of Saskatchewan and reformed the mental hospitals there at the request of then Premier Tommy Douglas. Hoffer did the first known double blind placebo controlled studies on treatment of schizophrenia with nutrition and high-dose B vitamins. They were published in the Lancet.


The article that caused such an earthquake because it showed that prescription drugs are a leading cause of death, was published in JAMA by J. Lazarou, N. H. Pomeranz, P. N. Corey, Incidence of Adverse Drug Reactions in Hospitalized Patients: A Meta-analysis of Prospective Studies vol. 279 (15), 1998.

The follow-up in 2007 is by T. J. Moore at al. Serious Adverse Drug Events Reported for the Food and Drug Administration: 1998-2005Archives of Internal Medicine, vol. 167 (16), 2007

The US Institute of Medicine (IOM) published a report in January 2013 with the statistics that show that the health of US citizens, even in the high income groups, is worse than the health of people living in 16 other developed countries.

M. Makary MD, Unaccountable: What Hospitals Won’t Tell You and How Transparency Can Revolutionize Health Care, Bloomsbury Press 2012. While the information is tailored to a US population, the basic facts apply to Canada as well.

D. W. Light, The Risks of Prescription Drugs, Columbia University Press, 2010

R. Fitzgerald, The Hundred-Year Lie: How to Protect Yourself from the Chemicals that Are Destroying Your Health, updated edition, Plume 2007

The source for the call to stop mammography screening is P. C. Gotzsche MD, editorial in CMAJ, November 22, 2011: “Time to stop mammography screening?

The details on screening tests in general and why they are neither reliable nor useful, see Dr. H. G. Welch et al., Overdiagnosed: Making People Sick in the Pursuit of Health, Beacon, 2011. A must-read before agreeing to any test!

On the corruption of prescribing habits, pharmaceutical control of medical groups and patient support organizations, and especially continuing medical education conferences see the books by Dr. Carl Elliott, White Coat Black Hat, 2010, Dr. Jerome Kassirer (Yale University Medical School, past editor of the New England Journal of Medicine), Dr. David Healey’s 2012 book Pharmageddon, Dr. Marcia Angell’s (editor of New England Journal of Medicine for 19 years, now professor of public policy at Harvard University) The Truth About the Drug Companies, 2003. For the evidence on how medical journals are controlled through pharmaceutical advertising see Richard Smith, The Trouble With Medical Journals, 2006. Dr. Smith was the editor-in-chief of the British Medical Journal for 20 years. The comments about medicine’s relationship with the pharmaceutical industry by Dr. Marcia Angell were published in the British Medical Journal, February 7, 2009, p. 328f

The source for the industry-friendly attitude of the American Academy of Pediatrics is on their website: accessed January 24, 2013. An analysis of the financial conflicts of interest within the AAP was published by FOX December 13, 2010: “Conflicts of Children’s Interest inside the American Academy of Pediatrics” by D. Imus. The AAP published their unsupported and insupportable opinions on organic foods for children in their October 22, 2012 issue. Their fight to keep mercury in vaccines and medicines is detailed in a report by the Alliance for Natural Health-USA, January 15, 2013.

J. Neuman et al. Prevalence of financial conflicts of interest among panel members producing clinical practice guidelines in Canada and the United States: cross sectional study British Medical Journal, 2011.  This is an open access article and can be downloaded fro free.

F. E. Vera-Badillo et al. Bias in reporting of endpoints of efficacy and toxicity in randomized clinical trials for women with breast cancerAnnals of Oncology, January 2013

A. Lundh et al., “Industry sponsorship and research outcome” Cochrane Library, December 2012 (NOTE: Canada’s Joel Lexchin is one of the authors)

R. Moynihan et al. Preventing over-diagnosis: how to stop harming the healthyBritish Medical Journal, May 29, 2012

An editorial in PLOS Medicine entitled Does Conflict of Interest Disclosure Worsen Bias? April 2012, vol. 9, issue 4.

Nature vol. 491, Nov. 2012: the US National Institutes of Health is stepping up enforcement of its public access policy. Any research publicly funded must be publicly accessible within 12 months of publication. The NIH will stop funding researchers who don’t comply.

L. Cosgrove & S. Krimsky, A Comparison of the DSM-IV and the DSM-5 Panel Members’ Financial Associations with Industry: A Pernicious Problem PersistsPLOS Medicine, March 2012, vol. 6, issue 3. Open access.

Kaiser Permanente’s ACE (Adverse Childhood Experience) project has generated some 60 specific studies so far. Google ACE study and read the ones of relevance to you.

The Medical Post, December 18, 2012, p. 39-40, ran an editorial entitled “Psychiatrists paint a bigger picture of health” which reported on the results so far of the ACE project.

Praising Spin Unspun

This is the source for the analysis of press releases spun to make results of trials look more industry-friendly. A. Yavchitz et al. Misrepresentation of Randomized Controlled Trials in Press releases and News Coverage: A Cohort StudyPLOS Medicine (open access), Sept. 2012, vol. 9, issue 9.

The details on how trials are rigged, trial participants are often seriously maltreated, how those with side effects are removed from the final data etc. are found especially in Carl Elliott MD, White Coat Black Hat, 2010 and David Healy MD, Pharmageddon, 2012. For associated tricks to avoid transparency and public accountability read MP Terence Young’s 2009 book Death by Prescription.

The fight for the raw data as being public property, not corporate property, is found in the reports of the Cochrane Collaboration All for free downloadable.

To understand “essential nutrients”, when they were discovered as such, their legal status, etc., the easiest source is Wikipedia where you will also find a very useful entry on the “Dietary Reference Intake”. It is useful because it shows the history of this concept, why it is outdated, and that the critic of the RDA is based on the fact that those maximums and minimums are all based on “opinion”, not on scientific sources one can access and read. For really good sources, that are properly referenced, and based on clinical data go to the Textbook of Nutritional Medicine by Dr. A. Gaby. It is expensive and a huge book. Ask your local library to buy it so you and others can consult it. Also recommended is the book by the Director of the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine, Jonathan Prousky, Integrative Clinical Nutrition, CCNM Press, 2012.

The data on the safety of nutritional supplements, the fact that no deaths have been reported in three decades, their efficacy and so on, go to Alliance for Natural Health UK and download their reports on these topics.

See also the excellent report in the National Post by Joseph Brean: “Poison in healthy doses

The three totally phony studies, supposedly showing the dangers to health from nutritional supplements, were:

1. The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) on Sept. 12, 2012, published an article alleging that supplementation with omega-3 fatty acids “was not associated with a lower risk of all-cause mortality…” An excellent analysis of this study, which Dr. Alan R. Gaby calls “fishy” is in The Townsend Letter for Doctors and Patients December 2012, p. 122-123. Essentially, what the researchers did was to use so low a dose that it was totally meaningless; they also avoided making any reference to existing studies showing the opposite. Had they done so, the dosage problem would have been immediately clear.

2. JAMA published in 2011 (vol. 306, issue 4) a study entitled “Elevated risk of prostate cancer with vitamin E supplementation” The researchers gave less than even the current RDA for healthy people to men at risk for prostate cancer. They added selenium which is known to be specifically important for healthy prostates, but again in dosages that are meaningless to sick people. It was also unclear what criteria were used to identify “at risk” for prostate cancer, and the quality of the vitamin E (natural? Synthetic? All 8 forms of tecopherol?) was not identified. A brilliant example of research trash.

3. The Archives of Internal Medicine published on October 10, 2011, an article on the results of the Iowa Women’s Study supposedly showing that taking multivitamins increase mortality in women. The principal investigator was David R. Jacobs Jr. PhD – the same as for the equally absurd study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 2004 (vol. 80, issue 1) entitled “Does supplemental vitamin C increase cardiovascular disease risk in women with diabetes?”  See my article in Vitality, October 2012, for an in-depth discussion of both.


Among the highly welcome surprises on good medical science:

The Medical Post published an article December 18, 2012, on how to evaluate medical guidelines. The chief source is Dr. Gordon Guyatt of MacMaster Medical School in Hamilton and co-author of the textbook on evidence-based medicine. Excellent! Every doctor should be required to pass an exam on this topic.

In December 2012 a US court awarded a the family of a child who became autistic after receiving his MMR shots in 2003, $969,474.91 in compensation, after affirming that the cause of his autism was the vaccine. For the whole story and the 83 other cases of this kind go to

JAMA Pediatrics expressed its concern in a study it published on January 21, 2013, showing that almost half of all US children either are not vaccinated or receive less vaccines or on a different schedule determined by their parents (i.e. later in life when the immune system is more developed and better able to cope with vaccines). JAMA is concerned because this would allegedly mean that such children would “be less likely to visit their doctor’s offices and more likely to be admitted to hospitals” – without citing a shred of evidence to prove that such children are more likely to be sick! The existing evidence is exactly the opposite. Nevertheless, this is welcome information: parents are getting smarter!

N.P. Klein et al. Waning protection after Fifth Dose of Acellular Pertussis Vaccine in Children New England Journal of Medicine, vol. 367, Sept. 13, 2012. Th article describes in excellent detail why the whooping cough vaccine ceases to work. See also my Vitality articles of October and December 2012 on this and related issues. The online version on Vitality’s website provide the sources.

The journal Pediatrics published an article showing that almost 80% of children receive alternative medical care sought out by their parents. The study’s author feels doctors “have an obligation to ensure” they are educated on these therapies. S. Vohra et al. Complementary and Alternative Medicine Use by Pediatric Specialty Outpatients Pediatrics Jan 14, 2013

I.L. Tong. Non-pharmacological treatment of postmenopausal symptoms The Obstetrician and Gynaecologist, Vol. 15 (1), 2013. Reported here is the fact that close to 80% of post-menopausal women use herbal treatments for menopausal symptoms, and the author suggests this is a good idea and should be promoted and studied further, because standard hormone replacement therapy with drugs is well-known to be toxic.

PTSD seems to be helpful in making good decisions when faced with standard medicine: D. Edmondson et al report in the British Medical Journal on January 18, 2013, in an article entitled “Concerns about medications mediate the association of post-traumatic stress disorder with adherence to medication in stroke survivors” that stroke survivors with PTSD distrust their medications and don’t take them, compared to those who do not have a history of PTSD. It was not reported whether the PTSD patients died in larger numbers – I doubt it!

The details on the many mainstream studies in vitamin D3 are in the Orthomolecular Medicine Service (online) January 17, 2013.

The use of vitamin D3 to treat successfully generally untreatable “triple-negative” breast cancer was in The Journal of Cell Biology, vol. 200(2), 2013 by D.A. Grotzky et al.

The use of grape seed extract for advanced stage IV breast cancer was published in Cancer Letters on January 21, 2013. The research was conducted by the University of Colorado Cancer Centre.

The use of sublingual immunotherapy to desensitize severe peanut allergy was reported in Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, vol. 131 (1), 2013 by D. M. Fleischer et al.

Using plant extracts instead of drugs to treat diabetes was a press release by the University of Greenwich, UK, January 16, 2013

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". 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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