- DEAR FRIEND:
Historically the relationship
between nutrition and disease began when humans experimented with various herbs and foods
to treat ailments. For example, Egyptians
used liver to treat night blindness (vitamin A deficiency), and Central American Indians
used specially treated corn to prevent pellagra (vitamin B3 deficiency).
Then at about the beginning
of the twentieth century, it was discovered that the lack of certain foods could cause
disease. For example, the removal of the bran
layers of rice could cause beri beri. The
absence of fruits and vegetables could cause scurvy.
An exclusive feeding of singular foods could cause disease, such as pellagra
from a diet primarily of corn. Also during
this period it was discovered that by altering foods from their natural state, disease
During the first half of this
century, with the advancing tools of technology, scientists were able to isolate and
synthesize vitamins. Some deficiencies caused
by modern processing could be solved by fortification with
Then we entered the most
recent era, in which nutrients are not seen just as preventive tools, but as therapeutic
tools as well. For example, large doses of
nicotinic acid (vitamin B3) can decrease cholesterol in hypercholesterolemia. Vitamin E in large doses can help prevent
atherosclerosis, and vitamin C in megadoses can prevent a wide range of pathologies
including asthma, autoimmunities, viral disease, atherosclerosis, and cancer to name a
few. Folic acid in doses beyond that
available in the modern diet prevents neural tube defects in babies.
We have thus moved from
discovery of the relationship between nutrition and health, to use of nutrition as a
preventative, to use of nutrition as therapy. Although
the practice of this newer knowledge lags far behind the revelations in the scientific
literature, progress is certainly being made.
We should not, however, get
caught up too much in the advancing, reductionistic view of health: That is, if we can break disease down into its
smallest pieces and fix these pieces with synthetic patch work, we have accomplished our ultimate aim of optimal
health. In actual fact, most all nutritional
disease (which most all disease is) could in fact be prevented by optimizing the diet
through the use of whole, natural, raw foods. These
are the foods we are genetically adapted to and if we wish to reach the health our genetic
potential offers, this is the best way to achieve it.
This is not to say we should
not remain alert to advancing nutritional knowledge.
Our modern setting basically precludes our eating an ideal raw, whole food
diet. Thus, supplementation is prudent and
can afford us the best insurance, given modern limitations, to reach our best health.
Letter, June 1996: 56
- HOW MUCH WATER?
The advice to drink six to
eight glasses of water daily is repeated so often in the health community that it has
assumed fundamental truth status. As I have
mentioned previously, when something is almost universally accepted, it is highly likely
that the truth lies somewhere else.
I have written a letter that
we send to various publications when we see this advice given. To date I have not received a reply. I reproduce it below to enable you to give some
thought to my contrary view.
- But before reading that letter and considering the
reasons not to drink that much water daily, let me give you some reasons to drink a lot of
When faced with just about
any illness or ailment, drink as much water as you possibly can. At the first signs of illness, drinking three 8
ounce glasses in 15 minutes can sometimes stop the problem dead in its tracks. I have found this remedy helpful for stomach
distress that can hit me in the middle of the night after I have had a super good mega
munchie treat just before bedtime. It's also
helped with headaches, muscle pain, crappy mood, and when I feel like I am coming down
with something. It works and should be the
first thing you think of when youre not up to par.
You can continue to flush
your system until you feel better and then return to a more normal water consumption level
- which I believe to be drinking when you are
The fact that huge quantities
of water force-fed may reverse illness is not proof that the illness was caused by lack of
water any more than curing a headache with aspirin proves you should be taking aspirin all
the time. Exactly why large quantities of
water have this healing effect is not known. We
can speculate that it may help removal of toxins that may be accumulating, create an
unfavorable environment for pathogens, modify pH, or may somehow contribute to energy
When you do this water
flushing try to use only good, clean, purified water, not the municipal recycled stuff
laden with a variety of chemicals and contaminants including chlorine and fluorine.
Now with this said, consider
the following letter questioning mega consumption of water on a daily basis as a routine:
What scientific evidence do you have for humans needing
to drink at least "48 ounces of water daily?"
What is the logic of:
Drinking when not thirsty?
Forcing yourself to urinate every 30 to 60 minutes?
Never getting a full night's sleep because of
Being tied to carrying a water source around all day
long every day?
Any substance can be toxic in sufficient quantity - at what level
is water toxic?
Why do we have the sense of thirst if it is never to
be used (which would be the case if 48 ounces of water were drunk daily)?
Why is always drinking when not thirsty not the same
as always eating when not hungry?
5. Why does water taste
wonderful when you are thirsty, but verges on repulsive when not (e.g. 48 ounces/day)?
Most importantly, what evidence is there that
archetypal humans before our age of "enlightenment" consumed such quanitites of
water, or were even in a position to do so? Further,
what mammal in the wild does so?
Forcing water for short periods of time during
illness may be a useful therapeutic tool, but is a questionable maintenance requirement.
Pure thirst for water is rare. It usually follows intense physical activity with
profuse sweating. A more common
"thirst" is for the high juice content of fruits.
If large quantities of fresh fruits and vegetables are eaten daily, there is
seldom even a desire for water - other than as I
said, if you are involved in intense physical activity.
The advantage of obtaining fluids from fruits and vegetables is that we are
receiving a bounty of important nutritional elements including fiber, vitamins, minerals,
enzymes, bioflavonoids, accessory nutrients and so forth.
If we force-saturate our body constantly with water, such as with six to
eight 8 ounce glasses per day, we will decrease the desire for, and therefore the
consumption of, these important foods.
I would appreciate your response."
- SUDDEN DEATH IN YOUNG ATHLETES
There occurred 158 sudden
deaths in trained athletes in the United States from 1985 to 1995. Sudden deaths in these young competitors, who are
usually in good physical shape and capable of exceptionally high levels of performance for
long periods of time, are unexpected and tragic.
If you think your child is
protected by the mandatory physical exam by a physician before participating in
basketball, football, track and the like, think again.
In a study of these 158
deaths, it was found that the median age was 17 years with a range from 12 to 40 years. Basketball and football accounted for the most
cases (68%) of sudden deaths. Ninety percent
collapsed during or immediately after a training session or formal athletic event.
The most common structural
cardiovascular disease identified was hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (an abnormal
proliferation of heart muscle tissue).
Of 115 athletes who were
exposed to standard medical screening, fewer than 5% were suspected of having
cardiovascular disease. The actual conditions
of fewer than 1% were diagnosed accurately. Medical
evaluations failed to identify 47 of the 48 cases of hypertrophic
Few athletes with
hypertrophic cardiomyopathy have any symptoms prior to collapse, nor do they have a
definitive family history of the disease.
Indeed this is usually a
surprise event, and false confidence created by a physical could lead to
pushing young aspiring athletes quickly to the grave.
Many of these athletes have
advanced atherosclerotic disease. This, as
well as hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, can be caused by nutrient deficiencies as a result of
feeding a modern processed diet.
Recently, I was at a sporting
event for young children between the ages of 7
and 10. A bonus with their entry fee was an
all-you-can-eat buffet. There were
nitrate-laden hot dogs, white flour hot dog buns, heavily sugared ketchup, hydrogenated
oil potato chips sitting in direct sun and white rice crispies caked with sugared syrup. Where were the major minerals? The trace minerals?
The balanced amino acids? The
active enzymes? The water soluble and fat
soluble vitamins? The fiber and
bioflavonoids, coenzyme Q-10 and all of the hundreds of other nutrients available in the
whole natural foods that these young bodies are genetically adapted to? Parents who try to build Olympians on diets such
as these are in effect trying to put the Empire State Building on a foundation of
If you love your children,
put first things first. Winning of an
athletic event is not first, building a healthy body with appropriate natural foods and
creating a foundation for a healthy life that will permit your child to be the best he/she
can be at anything, should be first and foremost.
of the American Medical Association, July 17, 1996: 199-201
- HOW TO BECOME A VIRGIN WHEN YOURE
Women from all over the Gulf
states are flocking to Egypt where a clever surgical procedure is being done to restore
the hymen in unmarried, unvirgin women. Not
only do men in these regions expect their brides to be virgins, but if they are not great
shame is brought to her family. If a
blood-stained white silk handkerchief is not displayed to close family members waiting
outside the bedroom, the bride can even be killed by brothers, uncles or even the father.
The solution for those who
have strayed among these women is to have a clever surgery performed. A gelatin capsule containing a blood-like
substance is sutured in place so that when it bursts during intercourse on the wedding
night, everyone will be convinced that she was indeed a virgin. In one case, by feigning insanity a new bride was
able to postpone intercourse with her new husband for four months, until she could save
sufficient money ($100 to $600) to have the procedure performed.
June 8, 1996: 1625
- MELATONIN - BEWARE
The use of melatonin for jet
lag, insomnia, as an antioxidant, and for other purposes is becoming extremely popular. Chronic use of this substance makes me nervous. I say this because melatonin is a biochemical
which is produced naturally within the body. If
you consume it, then you risk the chance of what is known as negative feedback inhibition.
Negative feedback inhibition
is the mechanism by which the body regulates levels of the various compounds it produces. If the level of the endogenously produced
biochemical reaches a certain threshold, there is negative feedback on the gland that
produces it so that production is shut down and excesses do not occur. If you take such compounds by mouth or by
injection, then the gland can be artificially inhibited from producing it naturally. Over time this inhibition can cause the gland to
lose its ability to produce the compound. Similarly,
if you inhibit your arm from any activity by putting it in a sling for a
month, it will lose its strength and flexibility.
Therefore, by regularly
taking melatonin, the pineal gland can become inhibited from its natural ability to
Additionally, consider that
melatonin is a nighttime and winter compound. It
is something that increases in the blood the less light that you have. What happens at night and in the winter? All functions decrease, including the immune
system. This is one reason that increased
deaths occur in the early morning hours and in winter time when melatonin is high.
Granted, melatonin may be
useful in certain instances of intractable insomnia or jet lag. But if it is taken, it should be for only brief
periods of time so that the bodys natural balances are not disturbed. If it is taken over a long period of time be sure
you gradually wean yourself off of it so that the pineal gland has a chance to slowly
restore its function.
- ARE VITAMINS TOO EXPENSIVE?
Repeatedly we hear from
nutritional supplement nay-sayers who claim that people are being fleeced by health food
companies and vitamin pushers. Forgetting for
a moment the fact that most of these nay-sayers belong to a medical industrial complex
that is raking in over a trillion dollars a year, consider the following.
In the USA alone, about
25,000 babies are born each year with the birth defect spina bifida. Each of these children will require some $40,000+
in medical care by the time they are 14 years of age.
Even though it has been known for decades that folic acid supplementation
would decrease the incidence of such birth defects by 75% or more, nothing was being done
and those who advocated the use of this pennies-a-day vitamin were labeled as quacks.
In the past 10 years, some
250,000 children have been born with spina bifida, costing the United States close to $10
billion in avoidable health care costs.
Now, finally, the public
health service is recommending fortification of foods with folic acid since the average
American diet is deficient in this nutrient. But
this comes only after years of debate, with the medical community wanting to keep status
quo and being bent on attempting to prove that nutrition cannot really affect health.
- ARSENIC USED TO SOLVE MARITAL PROBLEMS
A 35-year-old man was
diagnosed as having Guillain-Barré syndrome and was treated with steroids. Five months later he was admitted to the hospital
with fever and bronchitis. Chest pathology
was determined by x-rays. He was given
antibiotics, but eight months later he was readmitted with peripheral neuropathy (disease
in the nerves of the limbs), abdominal pain and diarrhea.
He was unable to walk without help and had neurological weakness in HIS arms
and legs. There was hyperkeratosis
(thickening of the skin) of his palms and soles, and white transverse lines on his nails
After extensive laboratory
testing it was finally determined, almost a year after the initial presentation, that he
was suffering from arsenic poisoning. It
seems his wife wanted a divorce and custody of their son and had been seeding his food
with ant killer containing arsenic.
Arsenic has been used for
centuries both to commit suicide and homicide. Accidental
exposure from industrial or environmental sources is rare, although occasionally there
have been cases reported of arsenic poisoning coming from natural therapies such as
certain Indian remedies and some sources of kelp.
Yet another reason to become
more directly involved in preparing your own foods... and always check over receipts when
your spouse shops at farm and garden stores.
June 8, 1996: 1596
1992; 339: 1540
1993; 306: 506
- LIGHT -
THE ULTIMATE HEALTH FOOD
The combination of modern
indoor lifestyles, clothing, and skin cancer scares have decreased the amount of light we
receive. Additionally, when we go
outside we wear sunglasses and slather on sunscreens.
Do you think the sun, the
ultimate source of energy for all life, is our enemy?
Of course not. If it were truly
the cancer/death promoter currently propagandized, the human race would not exist, since
we have sprung from a time when we spent all of our time outdoors unclothed. Light is not the enemy of life, it is its cause.
Why do you think you feel
better in the summer, have more energy and less illness than in the winter months? Why do you think you feel better when you take a
trip south where daylight is intensified and increased?
Why do you think death rates increase in the winter and depression and
Welcome light into your life. Try to get a good dose on as much of your skin as
you can legally expose every day. Dont
overdo it if your skin is bleached white from being cocooned in clothing indoors. Slowly acclimate to the sun since, of course,
anything in excess can be harmful.
Enjoy the suns warmth
and its rays and let your body receive its healthful benefits. Even new promising therapeutic methods for
removing infections now expose the blood directly to UV light. When sun hits our skin, its rays penetrate deep
within tissue helping to purify and energize us.
The sun is not carcinogenic,
it is our weakness as a result of modern lifestyles and environmental pollutants that is
the real culprit.
- DECREASING MORTALITY WITH VITAMINS E AND C
In a study of over 11,000
people ages 67 to 105, it was found that those individuals who took supplements of vitamin
E and vitamin C had a decreased risk of coronary heart disease mortality, cancer mortality
and a lower overall risk of total mortality.
This is yet another in a
seemingly never ending line of controlled scientific studies demonstrating the benefits of
supplementation with these vitamins.
Journal of Clinical Nutrition, August 1996, 190
- THE ANTIOXIDANT EFFECTS OF EXERCISE
In a study of 39 participants
in the 1994 Hawaii Iron Man World Championship Triathalon, it was found that the
susceptibility of lipids to oxidation is reduced by exercise. These effects appear to be independent of whether
antioxidant supplements were used. Evidently
there is an internal mechanism by which the body increases its own endogenous antioxidants
(e.g. glutathione) to protect the body against free radical damage. This protective effect of exercise can carry over
into helping to prevent many diseases which are free radical based.
A corollary of this is that
for those who live a sedentary life, their internal antioxidant mechanisms are sluggish
and ineffective, thus leading to the development of a variety of chronic degenerative
challenging exercise, combining aerobic workouts and weightbearing exercise, is therefore
a potent antioxidant in itself and a key to maximizing health and longevity.
of the American Medical Association, July 17, 1996: 221
- DON'T EAT THE SKIN
Potential toxicities from
eating plant-based foods include not only the pesticides and herbicides which maybe
present, but also the wide array of natural toxins the plant produces in its skin to ward
Unlike animals, which can
either flee or fight their predators, plants have to just sit there. Their inability
to move is made up for by their capability of warding off predators through
the use of natural toxins. This explains in
part the vast biochemical complexity of plants, with over 1-1/2 million chemicals thus far
identified in them.
Where do plants concentrate
these toxins designed to prevent their being eaten? On
their surfaces, the skins, their first and only line of defense.
You cant wash these
natural toxins away any more than you can
easily wash away the pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides that are glued and waxed to
the skin of fruits and vegetables by farmers and food processors.
As I see it, the only real
solution is to simply not eat the skins. Peel
your fruit and vegetables. If they cannot be
peeled, eat the whole fruit squeezing out the good parts and spitting away the skin
carcasses. It is less important that you
receive the fiber from the skins than that you protect yourself from the natural and
synthetic toxins which are present within it.
- IF YOU MUST TAKE A DIET PILL
I am not an advocate of diet
pills. The cause of obesity is far more
complex than can be addressed by a pill (see my book, The Synorgon Diet, How To Achieve Healthy Weight In A
World Of Excess available in Resource below).
However, many in desperation
will look to the various pharmaceuticals that are being offered as an aid to reducing
obesity. An alternative is the combination of
ephedrine and caffeine, both of which are substances derived from natural products. 20 mg of ephedrine plus 200 mg of caffeine has
been found to be the most effective in increasing the burning of calories while sparing
the loss of muscle.
There are a variety of side
effects attendant with the use of this medication which include nervousness, agitation,
tremors, insomnia, increased blood pressure and heart rate, constipation, dry mouth,
confusion and increased sweating to name a few. Thus is the price paid for
isolating compounds, even if they are found in nature, and consuming them. However, these side effects are not as dangerous
as those with many of the pharmaceutical preparations (such as dexfenfeluramine). Additionally side effects from the
ephedrine/caffeine combination may be dramatically decreased by very slowly introducing
ephedrine and caffeine to the diet until the dosage of 20 mg ephedrine and 200 mg caffeine
Long term use of this
combination is associated with an increase in thermogenesis, as well as a decrease in side
effects. It has the additional benefit of
increasing HDL levels and decreasing insulin resistance.
Synorgon Diet is available from the Wysong Book Store Catalog for $12.95 + S&H.
Letter, June 1996: 62
Therapeutic Research, 1990; 40; 3: 323
- HOW TO REMOVE BEE STINGS
As many as 10% of the general
population experience bee stings. In the U.S.
there are about 17 deaths per year as a direct result.
It is important that the
sting be removed as quickly as possible to decrease the amount of venom that is injected. There has always been debate as to how best to
remove it, with the most common advice being that you should scrape it off, rather than
squeeze it or pick it off. Evidence, however,
demonstrates that there is no preferred method of removal, but that the more rapid the
removal the better.
When a honey bee stings, the
entire distal segment of the bees abdomen, a nerve ganglion, muscles, and the end of
the digestive tract along with the sting are inserted into the skin. The sting itself has two lancets with curved
barbs on the outer aspect. Once the sting is
detached from the bee, the muscles that remain attached coordinated by the nerve ganglion
(a miniature "brain") cause the stylets on the sting to continue their one-way
traction working themselves deeper into the flesh. At
the same time a valve and piston on the ends of the moving lancets pump venom from the
sack through an opening near the tip into the wound.
By removing the sting as
rapidly as possible, the injection of venom is interrupted, thus decreasing the likelihood
of more serious consequences from higher levels of venomization.
It is also interesting to
note that an alarm pheromone is emitted at the base of the honey bees sting. This pheromone serves as a signal to attract other
bees and aid them in locating the enemy - you. This is particularly important with Africanized
bees, since they can respond in greater numbers to this signal and thus result in a larger
number of stings. This is yet another reason
to remove a sting as soon as possible by squeezing, pinching or scraping.
August 3, 1996: 301
- ZINC LOZENGES FOR COLDS
A controlled study of 100
people demonstrated that the use of zinc lozenges nearly halved the duration of cold
symptoms. Patients were enrolled in the
program within 24 hours of the onset of symptoms and given either lozenges containing zinc
gluconate or calcium lactate. They took the
lozenges every two hours while awake.
The results were surprising
to the medical researchers (How could a simple nutrient do what fancy pharmaceuticals cant?). They found that zinc has the
ability to interfere with the formation of viral capsid proteins, impair the ability of
viruses to adhere to respiratory cells, and can induce interferons and reduce
prostaglandin mediated inflammation.
July 20, 1996: 184
- SQUATTING AT THE STOOL
The correct way to go #2 is
the way people do it who dont have modern bathrooms.
Modern toilets configured like chairs do not permit positioning and natural
pressures to assist in bowel movements. The
result is often undue straining, incomplete evacuation with stool retention and
By squatting at the stool,
increased abdominal pressure is created and the body is anatomically configured in such a
way to permit evacuation with more ease.
Toilets should be
reconfigured to be more flush to the floor. Since
this is not possible in most instances, an alternative is to create an elevated floor by
way of benches or stools on each side of the toilet to permit squatting over the toilet.
This innovation may seem a
bit acrobatic and you want to be sure everything is stable and secure so you dont
come tumbling through the bathroom door at this most inopportune time.
- RIBOFLAVIN FOR MIGRAINES
In a study of 49 individuals
who had recurring episodes of migraines, those who consumed 400 mg per day of riboflavin
with breakfast for at least three months had 70% fewer migraines and 70% less severe
Cephalagia, 1994; 14: 328-329
- FISH OIL FOR CROHN'S DISEASE
People with Crohns
disease have recurring episodes of inflammatory bowel dysfunction. Pharmaceutical treatments only provide temporary
relief and are fraught with dangerous side effects.
In a controlled trial of
patients with Crohns disease, 39 received fish oil and 39 received placebo. After one year, 23 patients (59%) in the fish oil
group remained in remission while only 10 in the placebo group did.
Fish oils provide a variety
of fatty acids, particularly of the omega-3 class, that can be immune modulating and
anti-inflammatory as I describe in my book Lipid
Nutrition - Understanding Fats and Oils in Health and Disease (see Resource 19).
Lipid Nutrition is available from the Wysong Book
Store Catalog for $12.95 soft cover or $14.95 hard cover
England Journal of Medicine, June 13, 1996: 1557
- SALT AND HYPERTENSION
Although sodium restriction is commonly
believed to both prevent and treat hypertension, there is little agreement. A recent meta-analysis of some 56 randomized
controlled trials in fact has shown that although sodium restriction might help in older individuals who are
hypertensive, there is no evidence that sodium restriction in the general normotensive
(normal blood pressure) population is of any
Although modern highly refined and
additive-laden salt would be wise to restrict or even exclude from the diet, the use of
whole trace mineral-rich salt has many health benefits (see Wysong Whole Salt technical
brochure available from Resource 21).
Whole Salt Technical brochure is available
from Wysong Corporation, 1880 N. Eastman Rd., Midland, MI
Journal of the American Medical
Association, May 22, 1996: 1590
- NON-HODGKIN's LYMPHOMA AND MEAT EATING
Pesticides and herbicides
containing persistent chlorinated dioxins and the related chlorinated dibenzofurans are
highly lipophilic (readily absorbed into fat tissue).
When these compounds are sprayed on farm lands and crops and then consumed
by farm animals, they are incorporated into their fatty tissues. When humans then consume these meat products,
including fish and dairy products, they in turn absorb these compounds into their fatty
Some studies now strongly
suggest that there is a relationship between exposure to herbicides and pesticides and the
development of the non-Hodgkins lymphoma cancer.
It is believed that the compounds may compromise the immune system, interact
with oncogenic (cancer-causing) viruses, and transform into a variety of carcinogenic
compounds through the process of cooking.
It is of interest to note
that individuals, particularly women, eating large amounts of hamburger were particularly
at risk of developing high levels of the dioxin-type compounds in their fatty tissues.
This is yet another reason to
moderate intake of animal products and try to find sources of these foods that have an
organic, clean, pesticide- and herbicide-free history.
of the American Medical Association, August 21, 1996: 524
and Agent Orange: Update 1996, National Academy Press; 1996
Health Prospect, 1994; 102: 962
- EXERCISE HIGH
Exercise alone can provide a
powerful antidepressive effect. Plasma
beta-endorphin concentrations increase during and for a time after vigorous exercise. This biochemical produced by the body not only is
antidepressive and mood elevating, but analgesic (pain-killing). In long distance runners this compound helps
decrease the pain from extreme exertion. Proof
that mood elevation and analgesia are indeed caused by the bodys release of
beta-endorphins is the fact that naloxone, an opioid antagonist, can block the analgesia
and mood elevation effect of beta-endorphins.
The high that can be felt
from regular exercise is somewhat addicting because it just plain makes you feel good. Perhaps it is a survival mechanism to encourage
people to remain active.
The benefits from regular
exercise are too numerous to mention. Be an
August 17, 1996: 477