Newsletter v3n8

Newsletter v3n8
Back Issues

"An important scientific innovation rarely makes its way by gradually winning over and converting its opponents. What does happen is that its opponents gradually die out and that the growing generation is familiar with the idea from the beginning." (Max Planck (1858-1947), Nobel Laureate in Physics)

The DOCTOR YOURSELF NEWSLETTER (Vol 3, No 8) March 5, 2003

"Free of charge, free of advertising, and free of the A.M.A." Written by Andrew Saul, PhD. of , a free online library of over 350 natural healing articles with nearly 4,000 scientific references.


When I reflect back on the bugs, worms, pond snails, bullheads, dead frogs, desiccated fox carcasses, and other carrion that we handled as children, I am amazed that any of us made it to adulthood. One of our self-appointed youth projects was the rescue and rehabilitation of wounded and sick animals, and we specialized in pigeons. We routinely found them, bleeding, flapping and helpless, mired in mud and their own droppings, under a nearby railroad overpass. Parents, think before you give your kid a BB gun.

The common pigeon has been called the "feathered rat" because of the lice and other undesirables that it is known to carry. But to us, filthy or not, they were beautiful, iridescent birds that needed a home. When they were inevitably evicted from my parents' garage, the pigeons ended up convalescing in our treehouse. I would like to tell you that we all donned masks, gowns and gloves when we handled them, but we did not. Pigeons perched on our fingers. We hand-fed them bread and graham crackers. They ate our lunches with us. Their droppings surrounded us. I doubt if we even washed our hands half of the time. My great- grandmother often said, "You have to eat a peck of dirt before you die." She almost certainly meant this metaphorically, but we took it pretty much literally.

Foolish or not, we had no fear of parasites, seen or unseen.

Years later, as a masters student, I studied the common dog tapeworm, dipylidium caninum. It is rather odd to learn that you can literally eat this tapeworm, or its eggs, and you will not get infested with it. This is because the animal needs an intermediate host, such as a flea, to complete its life cycle. ._caninum$narrative.html

Therefore, do not eat fleas. More on this later.

Periodically I receive questions from folks worried they might be toting around a veritable menagerie of nameless internal parasites inside their body. The answer is, yes, you are literally loaded with little critters. Most are harmless, and a few are beneficial. There are tiny mites that live in the roots of each of your eyelashes. If you saw yogurt, bread or cheese under the microscope, you would never eat it again. There are far more bacteria on your skin than there are people on the earth. Your bowels are full of bacteria: nearly one-half of the dry weight of a bowel movement is nothing but bacteria.

The notion of parasites is so creepy that it cannot help but get your attention. It can also be great way to sell a product. Beware.

Truly harmful parasites are the biggest problem for the world's poorest people. If you have a sanitary food and water supply, your worries are few. For most of us, household pets are probably our biggest potential source of unwanted fellow parasitic passengers. Fleas from your dog or cat can carry tapeworm larvae. If you eat a flea, you can get a tapeworm. So don't. Eliminate fleas by frequent vacuuming and an occasional steam cleaning of any carpeting. Bathing a dog (lots of luck bathing your kitty) will also kill fleas. Regular use of a flea comb (on the animal, not yourself) will trap the little arthropodia as you groom your pet.

If you find yourself obsessing about parasites at 3 AM, go and get tested. Better yet, go and have your dog or cat tested. They are much more likely to have them than you are. For the vast majority of people, I think the fear far surpasses the danger.

As a biologist, I know that a population's existence is dependent on its environment. Habitat and food supply are absolute limits to ANY population. This is why, to the overfed Westerner, undereating and periodic fasting can be so effective in preventing and often reducing overgrowths of fungi, bacteria, worms, and what have you. I also think that near-vegetarians, who get abundant dietary fiber, drink a lot of vegetable juice, and megadose on vitamin C will have a particularly clean internal environment that parasites cannot abide.

So here's the plan: Eat right, and make parasites' lives miserable. Let's drive the little buggers right out of town.

I recognize that serious microbial diseases may require serious medication. Don't be a martyr: when in doubt, see a physician. Yet even when you do, some doubt will remain. For grim example, let's consider malaria. Does anyone know exactly how many bites from malaria-carrying mosquitoes it takes to give a person malaria? If the number varies, then why does it vary? How come many people get this severe parasitic disease, and yet most people do not, including people that live right beside them?


My grandfather worked on the Panama Canal. I have his pick. I've been through the entire Canal. Grandpa did good work, and he lived to old age to tell the tale. In my college days, I spent a little time in both Central America and in equatorial Africa. One night in Ghana, a bunch of us just could not take the heat and humidity any more. Someone bought a bottle of cheap gin; someone else produced some limes and enough quinine water (tonic) to fill every glass we could find. We sat in the dark, trying to hide from the mosquitoes, and had a great old time.

The particular mosquitoes we were attempting to evade carry a single-celled parasite, called a plasmodium, which causes malaria. Though my grandfather never suffered from it, malaria has been, and remains, one of the major killers on our planet, perhaps taking as many as 2,500,000 lives a year. A high percentage of those fatalities are children.

The World Health Organization (WHO) says, "Science still has no magic bullet for malaria and many doubt that such a single solution will ever exist." WHO recommends mosquito netting for prevention.

While there now are a number of costly drugs used to fight malaria, drug-resistant strains of the disease have rendered them increasingly untrustworthy. I think it is significant that the conventional medical treatment of malaria still relies on the use of quinine, even after some 300 years. While heavy dosage of quinine has its side effects, in moderation it appears to have worked for me, and presumably for my grandfather. Modern antimalarial drugs also have significant, often serious, side effects.

WHO says that "40% of the world's population - mostly those living in the poorest countries - is at risk for malaria," and that over 300 million people a year get the disease.

Let us explore the numbers, and therein the risk.

Our planet currently contains over 6,276,000,000 people. 40% of that is about two and a half billion, the number WHO says are "at risk for malaria." Of that number, over 300 million actually get the disease. If we estimate 350 million, that is an infection rate of 14% of people, mostly poor, that live 24-7 with lots of mosquitoes and far too little insect repellant.

If 350 million have malaria, and we accept the high estimate of two and a half million who die from it, that is a death rate of 0.7% of those infected. The world's people have far more to fear from war, poverty, malnutrition, poor sanitation, and cigarette smoking.

While there is no joy to be found in any mortality statistics, these suggest to me that malaria is effectively a symptom of poor living conditions and low resistance to illness in general. These are the real angles to explore in order to eliminate malaria, and for that matter, most other diseases.


What most physicians will tell you about malaria prevention, including medication side effects: l

The antibiotic doxycycline is one of the drugs used for malaria prophylaxis. ( ) Since vitamin C has a history of successful use as an antibiotic, I speculate that daily high dosages of vitamin C may work to prevent malaria, and do so with fewer side effects. I only took 500 mg vitamin C daily when I was in the tropics nearly 30 years ago. Knowing what I know now, I would take a vastly higher daily dose should I return.

"Ascorbic acid. . . when given in massive repeated doses. . . in acute infectious processes is favorably comparable to that of the sulfonamide or the mycelial antibiotics, but with the great advantage of freedom from toxic or allergic reactions." McCormick, W. J. (1951) Ascorbic acid as a chemotherapeutic agent. Archives of Pediatrics NY, Volume 69, Number 4, April, 1952, pp. 151-155. wj-arch_pediatrics-1952-v69-n4-p151.htm

Related References:

Klenner, Frederick R. (1953) The use of vitamin C as an antibiotic. Journal of Applied Nutrition. 6:274-278, and posted at j_appl_nutr-1953-v6-p274.htm .

McCormick, W. J. (1951) Vitamin C in the prophylaxis and therapy of infectious diseases. Archives of Pediatrics NY, Volume 68, Number 1, January, pp. 1-9, which is posted at wj-arch_pediatrics-1951-v68-n1-p1.htm )

What practically no physician will tell you about malaria treatment:

GARLIC FOR MALARIA "In cell culture studies, sulphide compounds such as those found in garlic were active against malaria-infected human cells and against cultured melanoma cells. The compounds ajoene and dysoxysulphone may act by affecting an enzyme that allows malarial parasites to infect cells, and which is also present in malignant cells. Despite the garlic's pungent nature, these compounds deserve further study."

Source: Crandall I, et al. Paper at American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene meeting 2001, Toronto. Abstract cited at l

IRRELEVANT STATISTIC: Our upstate New York town has received over ten feet of snow so far this winter. After your above vicarious trip to the tropics, well, I just thought you'd like to know.

BOOK REVIEW: Vitamin B-3 and Schizophrenia, by Abram Hoffer, M.D., Ph.D.

The United States Patent Office delayed issuing a patent on the Wright brothers' airplane for five years because it broke accepted scientific principles. This is actually true. And so is this: Vitamin B-3, niacin, is scientifically proven to be effective against psychosis, and yet the medical profession has delayed endorsing it. Not for five years, but for fifty.

In 1952, Abram Hoffer, MD, PhD, had just completed his psychiatry residency. What's more, he had proven, with the very first double-blind, placebo-controlled studies in the history of psychiatry, that vitamin B-3 could cure schizophrenia. You would think that psychiatrists everywhere would have beaten down a path to Saskatchewan to replicate the findings of this young Director of Psychiatric Research and his colleague, Humphry Osmond, M.D. ( )

You'd think so.

In modern psychiatry, niacin and schizophrenia are both terms that have been closeted away out of sight. And patients, tranquilized into submission or Prozac-ed into La- La Land, are often idly at home or wandering the streets, where either way it is highly doubtful that they will get much in the way of a daily vitamin intake. Those in institutions fare little better nutritionally. For everyone "knows" that vitamins do not cure "real" diseases.

But Dr Hoffer dissents. For half a century Dr Hoffer has dissented. His central point has been this: Illness, including mental illness, is not caused by drug deficiency. But much illness, especially mental illness, may be seen to be caused by a vitamin deficiency. This makes sense, and has stood up to clinical trial again and again. If you do not believe this, Vitamin B-3 and Schizophrenia will provide you with the references to prove it. And remember that it was Dr. Hoffer who started off those clinical studies in the first place. In 1952.

I personally should have first become aware of a food-brain connection during those all-night, cookie-fired mah-jongg marathons I all too regularly indulged in while attending Australian National University. Though arguably somewhat less than psychotic, my mind was nevertheless pretty whacked out on sugar, junk food and adrenaline by 3 am. My mood was destroyed; my mind agitated; unable to sleep, sit still, or smile. Of course, I never entertained even the thought of a nutrition connection. For we've all been carefully taught that drugs cure illness, not diet.

And certainly not vitamin supplements!

But the truth will out eventually. Three years later, I first saw niacin work on somebody else. He was a bona fide, properly-diagnosed, utterly-incurable, State-hospitalized schizophrenic patient. I did not see niacin work in the hospital, of course; the only vitamins given there are what you can filter out of your "Jell-O" and your "Tang." No, the patient was a fellow whose parents were desperate enough try anything, even nutrition. Perhaps this was because their son was so unmanageably violent that he was kicked out of the asylum and sent to live with them. On a good day, his Mom and Dad somehow got him to take 3,000 milligrams of niacin and 10,000 mg of vitamin C. Formally a hyperactive insomniac, he responded by sleeping for 18 hours the first night and becoming surprisingly normal within days. I'd seen him before, and I saw him after. I'd talked to his parents during the whole process. It was an astounding improvement.

Sometime afterward, I tried niacin to see if it would help my own touch of sleeplessness. I found it worked nicely, and it only took a little to do so, perhaps 100 milligrams at most. Any more and I would experience a warm "flush." But then I found that when I ate junk food or sugar in quantity, I could hold 500 mg or more without flushing a bit. And when I took all that niacin, instead of flipping out, I was calm. In Vitamin B-3 and Schizophrenia, Dr. Hoffer explains why this is so:

1) As a rule, the more ill you are, the more niacin you can hold without flushing. In other words, if you need it, you physiologically soak up a lot of niacin. Where does it all go? Well, a good bit of it goes into making nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide, or NAD. NAD is just about the most important coenzyme in your body. It is made from niacin, as its name implies.

2) Niacin is also works in your body as an antihistamine. Many persons showing psychotic behavior suffer from cerebral allergies. They need more niacin in order to cope with eating inappropriate foods. They also need to stop eating those inappropriate foods, chief among which are the ones they may crave the most: junk food and sugar.

3) There is a chemical found in quantity in the bodies of schizophrenic persons. It is an indole called adrenochrome. Adrenochrome (which is oxidized adrenaline) has an almost LSD-like effect on the body. That might well explain their behavior. Niacin serves to reduce the body's production of this toxic material.

That Dr. Hoffer can compress a lifetime of research experience into one readable and surprisingly short book is a tribute to how clearly he teaches both layman and physician the essentials of niacin treatment. I have taught nutritional biochemistry to high school, undergraduate, and chiropractic students. To most, it is not an especially gripping subject. But when even a basic working knowledge of niacin chemistry can profoundly change psychotic patients for the better, it becomes very interesting very quickly.

Dr. Hoffer has treated thousands and thousands of such patients for nearly half a century. At 85, he still is actively practicing orthomolecular (megavitamin) psychiatry. He has seen medical fads come and go. What he sees now is what he's always seen: that very sick people get well on vitamin B-3.

Vitamin B-3 and Schizophrenia: Discovery, Recovery, Controversy by Abram Hoffer, MD (Quarry Press, Kingston, Ontario Canada: 1998. ISBN 1-55082-079-6 Softcover, 150 pages plus bibliography and two appendices.)

CONFERENCE ANNOUNCEMENT: Dr. Abram Hoffer and many outstanding orthomolecular scientists will be attending and speaking at the International Society for Orthomolecular Medicine's 32nd Annual International Conference, "Nutritional Medicine Today." It will be held at the Fairmont Royal York Hotel, Toronto, Canada, April 10 -13, 2003. For more information, you can write to the Journal of Orthomolecular Medicine office at 16 Florence Ave., Toronto, Ontario, Canada, M2N 1E9 (requires 60 cents postage if you are writing from the USA), or you can email .

DOCTOR YOURSELF WEBSITE OF THE MONTH: is an extensive (and free) archive of especially valuable full-text vitamin C research papers, several of which I cite above in this Newsletter. Such articles are quite hard to find anywhere else. The website's creator tells me that one of the most frequently downloaded is a 1993 review of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS, or crib death) by Joseph G. Hattersley. That one paper cites 112 references. You will also find it easy to access original papers by Dr. Irwin Stone, Dr. William J. McCormick, Dr. Emanuel Cheraskin, and quite a number by Dr. Frederick R. Klenner. I highly recommend this excellent, non-commercial, and most valuable Internet resource.


DOCTORYOURSELF.COM is now (as of Feb 20) evidently the 50,514th most visited of all websites in the world, and I guess there are millions of them. Why, that is more activity than the Pittsburgh Panther's website receives. Sure, we are a tad behind , the World Gold Council, and of course we cannot approach (nor do we want to) most X-rated internet sites. But still, we get more visitors than the University of Phoenix, the Household Finance Company, or the Fender Guitar Corporation. We even beat the J. C Penney company. I am not making this up, you know. (Source: )

NEW YORK TOWN STOPS FLUORIDATION OF WATER, Spurred by College Faculty, Staff and Students

Village trustees voted, on February 18, 2003, to halt fluoridation in Canton, New York ( ). One hundred and thirty faculty and staff members of Canton's St. Lawrence University and 300 students petitioned the village trustees to ban fluoride from its water supply.

The decision caps months of public discussion and research about whether residents' best interests were served with fluoridation, the intentional addition of cavity-preventing fluoride into water supplies. Trustee Stephen Putnam, who voted against fluoridation, said he spent much of December and January reading articles about fluoride and was concerned that fluoride accumulates in the bones, particularly for menopausal women who drink fluoridated water over many years, reported the Watertown Daily Times.

Chemistry professor Paul Connett, PhD, who led the campaign to rid fluoride from Canton's tap water said, "An independent review of the literature finds that fluoridation is:

∑ unethical (medication without patient's informed consent)

∑ unnecessary (kids get too much fluoride from many sources)

∑ ineffective (at best, fluoridation saves less than one tooth surface out of 128 in a child's mouth)

∑ unsafe (fluoride accumulation can make bones brittle and joints painful)

∑ inequitable (the poor cannot afford to avoid it, if desired)

∑ unscientifically defended (proponents cannot defend the practice in open debate)

∑ wasteful, literally pouring taxpayer money down the drain."

Hardy Limeback, PhD, DDS, Head of Preventive Dentistry, University of Toronto, drove four hours by car, at his own expense, to give testimony. Once an avid fluoridation promoter, Limeback turned fluoridation opponent when he discovered the:

a) incidence of children's dental fluorosis (fluoride discolored teeth) has risen sharply,

b) benefits of fluoridation are topical, not systemic (swallowed fluoride does not prevent tooth decay),

c) chemical most used in fluoridation schemes is not pharmaceutical grade, but an industrial waste-product, hexafluorosilicic acid, which the US Environmental Protection Agency admits has never been safety tested.

For more information, you can contact: Dr. Paul Connett, , Dr. Hardy Limeback, Attorney Paul Beeber (Reprinted with permission of the NYS Coalition Opposed to Fluoridation. )

My website offers these articles on fluoridation:

And on care of the teeth:

There are many fluoridation links to be found on my LINKS page at

READERS ASK: "What is your opinion of Dr. D'Adamo's "Blood Type Diet"?

Peter J. D'Adamo, N. D. ( ) is the best-selling author of Eat Right 4 Your Type and several related sequels. My short opinion of his work is that there is some good advice in each of his four diet plans, and that a human being cannot go terribly wrong following any of them. Nothing in my studies of genetics or nutrition has so far led me to adopt his conviction that diet is so very closely related to blood-type. I am nevertheless always interested in whatever works.

One gently negative reviewer put it this way: "If you eat less calories than you burn, you will lose weight no matter what your blood type."

Personally, I am uneasy with Dr. D'Adamo's online "Blood Type Store" _action=detail&catalogno=ED002 , which markets products according to your blood type.

I will readily agree that one nutritional size does not necessarily fit everyone. Different people need different amounts of calories, depending on activity, personal choices and heredity. Sick people need vastly more vitamin C than healthy people. I know people that do very well with no dairy products, and others who do much better when they start eating dairy. Variation in nutritional needs can be very wide, even among people of the same blood type. Roger J. Williams, PhD, has been teaching the concept of biochemic individuality since the 1950's.

I personally find it hard to believe that all humanity can be divided into four parts. (Even Julius Caesar was off a bit claiming merely that all Gaul is divided into three parts, because there were in fact five parts ( NorRomeGaul.htm). I find it equally unlikely that one-twelfth of all readers of the morning newspaper will have the same astrologically-preordained day. But then, I could be wrong. It wouldn't be the first time.

Your opinion is invited to . Some of the most interesting readers' comments will be shared in a future Newsletter.

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AN IMPORTANT NOTE: This newsletter is not in any way offered as prescription, diagnosis nor treatment for any disease, illness, infirmity or physical condition. Any form of self-treatment or alternative health program necessarily must involve an individual's acceptance of some risk, and no one should assume otherwise. Persons needing medical care should obtain it from a physician. Consult your doctor before making any health decision.

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