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Newsletter v5n9

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"For every drug that benefits a patient, there is a natural substance that can achieve the same effect." -- Carl C. Pfeiffer, M.D., Ph.D. [More on Dr. Pfeiffer: http://www.doctoryourself.com/ccpfeiffer.html ]

The DOCTOR YOURSELF NEWSLETTER (Vol. 5, No. 9 for June, 2005)

"Free of charge, free of advertising, and free of the A.M.A."

Published and copyright 2005 by Andrew W. Saul of http://www.doctoryourself.com , which welcomes over 1.5 million visitors annually. Commercial use of the website or the contents of this Newsletter is strictly prohibited.

IN THIS ISSUE:

WHERE ARE THE BODIES? THE SAFETY OF VITAMINS AND FOOD SUPPLEMENTS

CAFFEINE CAUSES INFERTILITY

HARVARD STUDY: NUTS PREVENT GALLSTONES

"FOOLED" GROUPS

ONLINE VITAMIN ARTICLES: Our Picks for the Month

FEARLESS FLUORIDE FACTS

ORTHOMOLECULAR MEDICINE NEWS SERVICE

NEW INTERVIEW ONLINE WITH ANDREW W. SAUL

FREE BOOKS ONLINE

AGE SPOTS, BASAL CELL CARCINOMA, AND SOLAR KETOSIS

REVIEW OF HEALTH-RELATED WEB SITES

BOOK REVIEW: THE UV ADVANTAGE, by Dr. Michael Holick

DEPRESSION

Also: Spreading the Message; Volunteer Opportunity; and Meniere's Syndrome

WHERE ARE THE BODIES?

THE SAFETY OF VITAMINS AND FOOD SUPPLEMENTS

(A presentation by Andrew W. Saul to the Government of Canada, House of Commons Standing Committee on Health, specifically in reference to C-420, on May 12, 2005, Ottawa, Canada.)

Honorable Ladies and Gentlemen:

Natural health products, such as amino acids, herbs, vitamins and other nutritional supplements, have an extraordinarily safe usage history. In the USA, close to half of the population takes herbal or nutritional supplements every day. That is over 145,000,000 individual doses daily, for a total of over 53 billion doses annually.

The most elementary of forensic arguments is, where are the bodies?

To try to answer this question, we may turn to the 2003 Annual Report of the American Association of Poison Control Centers Toxic Exposures Surveillance System, published in the American Journal of Emergency Medicine, Vol. 22, No. 5, September 2004.

(http://www.aapcc.org/Annual%20Reports/03report/Annual%20Report%202003.pdf)

This report states that there have been four deaths attributed to vitamin/mineral supplements in the year 2003. Two of those deaths were due to iron poisoning. That means there have been two deaths allegedly caused by vitamins, out of over 53 billion doses. That is a product safety record without equal.

Pharmaceutical drugs, on the other hand, caused over 2,000 poison control-reported deaths, including

Antibiotics: 13 deaths

Antidepressants: 274 deaths

Antihistamines: 64 deaths

Cardiovascular drugs: 162 deaths

It would be incorrect to state that only prescription drugs kill people. In 2003, there were 59 deaths from aspirin alone. That is a death rate nearly thirty times higher than that of iron supplements. Furthermore, there were still more deaths from aspirin in combination with other products.

Fatalities are by no means limited to drug products. In the USA in the year 2003, there was a death from "Cream/lotion/makeup," a death from "Granular laundry detergent," one death from "Gun bluing," one death from plain soap, one death from baking soda, and one death from table salt.

Other deaths reported by the American Association of Poison Control Centers included:

aerosol air fresheners: 2 deaths

nailpolish remover: 2 deaths

perfume/cologne/aftershave: 2 deaths

charcoal: 3 deaths

dishwashing detergent: 3 deaths

(and interestingly, weapons of mass destruction: 0 deaths)

In America in 2003, there were 28 deaths from heroin, and yet acetaminophen ("Tylenol") alone killed 147. Though acetaminophen killed over five times as many, few would say that we should make this generally-regarded-as-safe, over-the-counter pain reliever require prescription. Even caffeine killed two people in 2003, a number equal to the two fatalities attributed to non-iron vitamin/mineral supplements. Tea, coffee and cola soft drinks are not sold with restriction, prescription, or in childproof bottles, and rather few would maintain that they need to be.

A CLOSER LOOK AT ALLEGATIONS OF VITAMIN FATALITIES

Nutritional supplements are exceptionally safe. In 2003, there were no deaths from multiple vitamins without iron. There were no deaths from amino acids. There were no deaths from B-complex vitamin supplements. There were no deaths from niacin. There were no deaths from vitamin A. There were no deaths from vitamin D. There were no deaths from vitamin E.

There was, supposedly, one alleged death from C and one alleged death from B-6.

The accuracy of such attribution is questionable, as water-soluble vitamins such as B-6 (pyridoxine) and vitamin C (ascorbate) have excellent safety records stretching back for many decades. "Vitamin problem" allegations are routinely overstated and unconfirmed. The latest (2003) Toxic Exposures Surveillance System report indicates that reported deaths are "probably or undoubtedly related to the exposure," a clear admission of uncertainty in the reporting. (p 340)

Even if true, such events are aberrations. For example, In 1998, the American Association of Poison Control Centers' Toxic Exposure Surveillance System reported no fatalities from either vitamin C or from B-6. In fact, that year there were no vitamin fatalities whatsoever. For decades I have asked my readers, colleagues, and students to provide me with any and all scientific evidence of a confirmed death from either of these two vitamins, or from any other vitamin. I have seen none to date.

HERBAL SUPPLEMENTS

The 2003 Report of the American Association of Poison Control Centers Toxic Exposures Surveillance System

(http://www.aapcc.org/Annual%20Reports/03report/Annual%20Report%202003.pdf)

indicates a total of 13 deaths attributed to herbal preparations. Three of these are from ephedra, two from yohimbe, and two from ma-huang. I have worked extensively in the alternative health field for nearly 30 years, and I have known of virtually no one who has taken ephedra, yohimbe, or ma-huang, and certainly not in the deliberately abusive high quantities that it takes to kill someone. Nevertheless, accepting all seven deaths attributed to these products, we still find that there were 30 times as many deaths from aspirin and acetaminophen.

Only three deaths are attributable to other "single ingredient botanicals," and oddly enough, their identity remains unnamed in the Toxic Exposures report.

Millions of persons take herbal remedies, and have done so for generations. Indigenous and Westernized peoples alike have found them to be safe and effective, and the 2003 Report of the American Association of Poison Control Centers Toxic Exposures Surveillance System confirms this (p 388-389). There have been no deaths at all from "cultural medicines," including ayurvedic, Asian, Hispanic, and in fact, from all others.

Additionally, we find:

Blue cohosh: 0 deaths

Ginko biloba: 0 deaths

Echinacea: 0 deaths

Ginseng: 0 deaths

Kava kava: 0 deaths

St John's wort: 0 deaths

Valerian: 0 deaths

Furthermore, there have been no deaths from phytoestrogens, glandulars, blue-green algae, or homeopathic remedies.

MINERAL SUPPLEMENTS

Of the eight deaths in the category, five of them are from non-supplement sources rightly termed "electrolytes": two from sodium and three from potassium (p 389). Two deaths were allegedly due to iron overdose. Since 1986, there has been an average of two deaths per year "associated with" iron supplements. The sole remaining death was from calcium, a mineral that is employed medically for its antidote properties. In fact, in 2003, calcium was used as a lifesaving antidote in 5,228 cases (p 344). There is no evidence that the single listed calcium death was from a supplement, and the odds are overwhelming that it was not.

AMINO ACID SUPPLEMENTS

In 2003, poison control centers reported no deaths whatsoever from amino acids. This is in itself a strong safety statement.

IN PERSPECTIVE

Supplementation's harshest critics have traditionally railed against vitamins (especially in large doses) as being outright "dangerous" and at the very least "a waste of money." Yet nutritional supplements are very safe, and for much of the population, very necessary. . . To illustrate how extraordinarily important supplements are to persons with a questionable diet, consider this: Children who eat hot dogs once a week double their risk of a brain tumor. Kids eating more than twelve hot dogs a month (that's barely three hot dogs a week) have nearly ten times the risk of leukemia as children who ate none. (Peters JM, Preston-Martin S, London SJ, Bowman JD, Buckley JD, Thomas DC. Processed meats and risk of childhood leukemia. Cancer Causes Control. 1994 Mar; 5(2):195-202.)

However, hot-dog eating children taking supplemental vitamins were shown to have a reduced risk of cancer. (Sarasua S, Savitz DA. Cured and broiled meat consumption in relation to childhood cancer. Cancer Causes Control. 1994 Mar; 5(2):141-8.)

It is curious that, while theorizing many "potential" dangers of vitamins, the media often choose to ignore the very real cancer-prevention benefits of supplementation. . . Media supplement-scare-stories notwithstanding, taking supplements is not the problem; it is a solution. Malnutrition is the problem.

The number one side effect of vitamins is failure to take enough of them. Vitamins are extraordinarily safe substances. Drugs are not. There are over 106,000 deaths from pharmaceutical drugs each year in the USA, even when prescribed correctly and taken as prescribed. (Lucian Leape, Error in medicine. Journal of the American Medical Association, 1994, 272:23, p 1851. Also: Leape LL. Institute of Medicine medical error figures are not exaggerated. JAMA. 2000 Jul 5;284(1):95-7.)

Public supplementation should be encouraged, not discouraged. Supplements are a cost-effective means of preventing and ameliorating illness. Supplement safety is outstandingly high. Natural health products should be classified as foods, not drugs.

(end)

You can read the full text of Andrew Saul's Parliamentary presentation at

http://www.doctoryourself.com/testimony.htm

En francais: http://www.doctoryourself.com/testimonyfrancais.htm

FOR A MORE IN-DEPTH DISCUSSION:

"THE SAFETY AND EFFICACY OF VITAMINS," a special 100-page issue of the JOURNAL OF ORTHOMOLECULAR MEDICINE (Vol 18, No 3&4, 2003) is now available directly from me for $15.00 each postpaid to USA addresses. I have less than 40 copies available, so I ask that if you intend to purchase, PLEASE email me first to reserve one at doctoryourself.com/contact.html. Please put "SPECIAL ISSUE" as your email subject line. For international orders, email first for airmail shipping costs.

CAFFEINE CAUSES INFERTILITY

Wilcox A, Weinberg C, Baird D. Caffeinated beverages and decreased fertility. Lancet. 1988 Dec 24-31;2(8626-8627):1453-6.

"Women who consumed more than the equivalent of one cup of coffee per day were half as likely to become pregnant,

per cycle, as women who drank less. A dose-response effect was present." PMID: 2904572 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

HARVARD STUDY: NUTS PREVENT GALLSTONES

Tsai CJ, Leitzmann MF, Hu FB, Willett WC, Giovannucci EL. A prospective cohort study of nut consumption and the risk of gallstone disease in men. Am J Epidemiol. 2004 Nov 15;160(10):961-8.

"Nuts are rich in several compounds that may be protective against gallstones. During 457,305 person-years of follow-up, 1,833 participants reported gallstone disease. Men consuming 5 or more units of nuts per week (frequent consumption) had a significantly lower risk of gallstone disease." PMID: 15522852 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

DON'T BE FOOLED, BUT ENJOY THE SATIRE

Making fun of the USDA's "Food Groups" approach to nutrition:

http://mypyramid.org/

EXCELLENT VITAMIN ARTICLES

Vitamin E:

http://www.enerex.ca/articles/new_old_findings_on_unique_vitamin_e.htm

C and E:

http://www.alliance-natural-health.org/index.cfm?action=news&ID=153

http://www.nutraingredients.com/news/news-ng.asp?n=59359-vitamin-c-reduces

FEARLESS FLUORIDE FACTS

From "Fluoridation issues remain under study," by Laurie Pearson (April 13, 2005), Elk Valley Times.

"The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sets drinking water standards, but the FDA has classified fluoride as an 'unapproved new drug.' The EPA Headquarters Professionals' Union, named National Treasury Employees Union - Chapter 280 is a group of 1,500 scientists, lawyers, engineers and other professional employees at EPA Headquarters in Washington, D.C., who are opposed to fluoridation. They may be contacted through Dr. J. William Hirzy, senior vice president, NTELU Chapter 280, at (202) 260-4683, or email address hirzy.john@epa.gov."

For more information:

http://www.orgsites.com/ny/nyscof http://www.fluoridenews.blogspot.com/ http://www.fluoridealert.org

ARE YOUR LOCAL NEWSPAPERS AND TV STATIONS RECEIVING THE "ORTHOMOLECULAR MEDICINE NEWS SERVICE" (OMNS)?

Nearly 1,000 reporters and newscasters worldwide are now getting the positive story about vitamin therapy thanks to the peer-reviewed Orthomolecular Medicine News Service.

How about those in your town?

If you have email addresses for your local TV newscasters or newspaper reporters, please send them to us and we will send OMNS newsfeeds to them, free. Phone numbers, station names or postal addresses will not help in this project, but email addresses will! Send EMAIL ADDRESSES ONLY, please, to doctoryourself.com/contact.html with your subject line as "MEDIA." We want contact emails for ALL newspapers and for all TV stations, large or small.

Send in yours today!

A recent OMNS release may be viewed at

http://www.alliance-natural-health.org/index.cfm?action=news&ID=159

ARE YOU RECEIVING THE "ORTHOMOLECULAR MEDICINE NEWS SERVICE" (OMNS)?

If you'd personally like a free subscription to OMNS, the megavitamin news wire service, please go DIRECTLY to http://orthomolecular.org/subscribe.html to instantly sign up (if you haven't already done so!)

FOR ALL YOU HEALTH HOMESTEADERS:

A new interview with Andrew W. Saul has just been posted at http://www.innerexplorations.com/simpletext/andrew.htm

FREE HOMESTEADING BOOKS ONLINE:

"The Treasures of Simple Living" tells the story of a family moving from town to the middle of a forest in Oregon starting in the late 1970s. http://www.innerexplorations.com/catsimple/2.htm

"Radical Simplicity and the Fourth Step" explores what this homesteading family's life in the forest taught them about the basic structures of our society: schools, jobs, housing, etc. http://www.innerexplorations.com/catsimple/radical.htm

And, a homesteaders' "Resource Guide" has been posted to provide valuable information for people who want to go on their own journeys of simple living. It is at http://www.innerexplorations.com/catsimple/tr4.htm

Age Spots, Basal Cell Carcinoma and Solar Keratosis

by Robert, Doctor Yourself Staff Volunteer in Tennessee

I have fair skin and was often sunburned during childhood. Now I'm 57 years old and have had problems with age spots (discolored skin spots that look like freckles), basal cell carcinoma and solar keratoses on the skin of my temples, tops of ears and forehead. I go for a checkup at my dermatologist every six months. During my dermatologist checkup seven months ago my dermatologist said I had what appeared to be small (largest the diameter of a pencil lead) spots of basal cell carcinoma, age spots and solar keratoses. He recommended that I undergo a treatment during which I would go to his office and he would apply a cream that would dissolve the sun-damaged skin and new healthy skin would grow back on the affected areas. The treatment (application of the cream) would involve two visits a week to the dermatologist's office for an eight-week period (total of 16 office visits).

I told the dermatologist I would consider it. I did some research on the Internet and decided to try another approach.

I found that research involving vitamin C and cancer showed that in vitro, some types of human cancer cells were killed by relatively dilute concentrations of vitamin C, more types were killed with higher concentrations of vitamin C and all types were killed with the highest concentration of vitamin C. I decided I would try the following treatment and see what happened.

In the evening I take a hot shower to wash away oil on my skin and to open the skin pores. Immediately after drying, I apply a water solution of ascorbic acid vitamin C (directions for making the solution are below). The water solution of vitamin C dries on my skin in two or three minutes. When the water dries, a clearly visible thin coat of vitamin C crystals remains on the applied areas. My skin itches and stings a little for 30 minutes. I leave the vitamin C on my skin overnight and then wash it off in the morning. Small spots of basal cell carcinoma die and fall off in a couple of weeks. Small solar keratoses are killed. Age spots are bleached and become hardly visible. I continue this nightly application of ascorbic acid vitamin C water until the desired results are achieved or until it becomes obvious after a couple of weeks that the vitamin C is doing no further good.

One month ago I went to my dermatologist for a routine check. He killed some large solar keratoses by freezing with liquid nitrogen and he said I now have no areas of skin of concern.

http://dermatlas.med.jhmi.edu/derm/IndexDisplay.cfm?ImageID=-451564798 is a site showing many basal cell carcinomas. To see a close-up of any of them, just click on the image. Caution: the images are not pretty. I really don't worry about the very small spots of basal cell because I know I can kill them. They are very slow growing and it is extremely rare for them to metastasize. The trick is to kill them as soon as possible.

I worry about the solar keratosis; about two per cent will turn into squamous cell carcinoma.

I'm a chemical engineer, and by training and predisposition I try various ways to solve problems. I still have a number of solar keratoses on my forehead. They are not growing on the surface of the skin; they are growing beneath the skin surface. I can see them but can't get to them by applying vitamin C to the surface of my skin. I keep applying vitamin C and when small keratoses come to the surface of the skin, the vitamin C quickly kills them in just one or two applications. The problem is getting the vitamin C in contact with the keratoses.

It seems to me that vitamin C kills many types of abnormal cells.

I examine my skin daily. These skin problems are serious business. This is not a treatment that one can apply and then forget. I know that I'll be concerned about my skin for the rest of my life. About one million people are diagnosed with skin cancer every year and about 1,500 die as a result of skin cancer (at least half of those are from melanoma which does metastasize relatively easily). I also go to the dermatologist regularly. I don't always do what he says, but I do listen to what he says.

This is from the 1971 Klenner Vitamin C article posted on the Doctor Yourself website:

http://www.doctoryourself.com/klennerpaper.html

"Five percent ointment using a water soluble base will cure acute fever blisters if applied 10 or more times a day and we have removed several small basal cell epithelioma has with a 30 percent ointment."

How do I help prevent further sun damage to the skin? I wear a hat with a rim whose shadow covers my head, ear tips and upper face during the summer and I take extra vitamin C. The 1971 Klenner Vitamin C paper

http://www.doctoryourself.com/klennerpaper.html says "one gram taken every one to two hours during exposure will prevent sunburn." Exposed parts of my skin turn red in the summer but the skin does not burn.

Preparation of Water-Saturated Vitamin C:

I take a small three-ounce juice glass, add about six grams of ascorbic acid vitamin C crystals (crushed tablets are OK too) and add just enough cool tap water to the glass to cover the vitamin C crystals. Stir well. Be sure after two minutes or so of stirring that there are still undissolved crystals in the bottom of the glass (If not, add a couple more grams of vitamin C crystals and stir again). The water in the glass is now saturated with vitamin C and is ready for use. Touch the tip of a finger in a saturated water solution of vitamin C. Touch the wet finger to the skin area to be treated. The water will evaporate in two or three minutes and leave a plainly visible coat of vitamin C crystals on the skin.

REVIEW OF VARIOUS HEALTH-RELATED WEB SITES by Victoria Kennedy, Doctor Yourself Staff Volunteer

I read lots of health books and magazines and love to surf the internet looking for information on health issues that concern family, friends and myself. The internet is full of many health sites, some of them are very good, like Doctor Yourself, and of course there are others that aren't so good. I'd like to try and explain to you the way I determine, at least in my own mind, whether a site is legitimate or has something of value to offer me.

The first step I take is to skim through the site to see what kind of information it has and how it's presented. Then I slow down and read whatever draws my attention the most. I look for logic; for instance, if the site I'm on is praising cheese and dairy but is hostile towards yogurt, I ask the question, why? If there's no reasonable answer or not even an attempt to give one, it raises a red flag in my mind. However, if the site does contain some useful info and ideas I won't entirely dismiss it.

If there's a website I visit that contains information and also a product they're selling, I look around the Internet to see what other sites might be saying about this item or items. If I'm satisfied that everything seems legit, I check their privacy policy and go from there. Some claims get my eternally optimistic hopes up, but if I can't find something to validate what they're saying, I usually move on.

I hope you find these websites as interesting and helpful as I did. Enjoy!

http://www.organicmd.org/index.html I found this first one while researching vegetarianism. I've been a vegetarian for many years, but always like to search for new ideas or perspectives on the subject. This site has a doctor's ideas on a healthy lifestyle, and has strong opinions on what you must do to attain one. One of the things I didn't like is that it appears to be opposed to supplements. But even if you don't agree with everything that he says he makes some points worth pondering.

If you're interested in herbs as a way to help keep you healthy, go to: http://home.teleport.com/~howieb/howie.html I stumbled across this site while looking for a cough remedy for a relative. Under "Medicinal Herb FAQ" I found a section under coughs that listed the names of herbs that would be useful. It even had a recipe for cough syrup. This site has much to offer: links to wild crafting sites, herb info, plant databases and herbal instruction courses.

I found http://www.wellbeingjournal.com/articles.htm by chance. I was just out surfing for health info in general. The article on Mad Cow Disease is worth reading. And there are articles on mental health, ADD and nutrition in children, (I had to tell another relative about that one.) colon health, cancer, vaccines, etc. I think it's worth checking out.

http://www.wholehealthmd.com recommends certain supplements to use for Multiple Sclerosis. I've done a lot of 'net searches for information on MS as I have a relative who may have it. Dosages and safety warnings are also provided. Other illnesses can also be found here as well. Aside from the MS data, my favorite section of the website is the kitchen/recipe section. It's great! There you can find foods that help with healing certain ailments, recipe makeovers, and recipes for your particular dietary needs, such as low sodium, vegetarian etc.

http://www.holisticmed.com aided me in my search for a Holistic Medicine Physician. There are many links here for chiropractic, homeopathy, vegetarianism, yoga and more. It has an extensive set of links to many kinds of health information. Through this site I was able to find links to two holistic doctors within a forty-mile radius of where I live.

(Editor's note: Reviewers opinions are their own, and not necessarily those of Doctor Yourself.com. And a reminder: we do not provide referrals or addresses to practitioners near you.)

BOOK REVIEW:

THE UV ADVANTAGE, by Dr. Michael Holick. (May 2004, I Books, Inc., New York. ISBN: 0743486471)

Reviewed by Deb Harrity, Doctor Yourself Staff Volunteer

Dr. Holick is a highly qualified researcher and medical doctor, internationally recognized for his many contributions in the field of vitamin D, calcium, skin and bone. He is a full professor of medicine, biophysics and physiology (and formerly dermatology, but more about that later) at the Boston University School of Medicine. He is arguably the world's foremost authority on the subject of vitamin D, and he is the director of Boston University Medical Center's Vitamin D lab. So it would be tough to find someone more qualified to write about the relationship between ultraviolet light and human health.

Yet his recent book, The UV Advantage, has caused quite a dust-up in the world of dermatology. Why?

First, let's look at the book itself. Holick wrote this book to spread the word that exposure to sunlight is highly beneficial to health. In fact, he makes the strong case, based on his own research and the research of others (his book contains 120 scientific citations), that those who do not get out in the sun put themselves at risk for many serious chronic diseases. He gives evidence that vitamin D deficiency is a major health risk, particularly for those living more than 30 degrees latitude from the equator and/or who have dark skin. Exposure to the ultraviolet rays of the sun causes the skin to create vitamin D, and, says Holick, judicious sun exposure can ward off the many diseases associated with vitamin D deficiency, including an alarming string of today's most troubling degenerative conditions: high blood pressure, stroke, heart attack, multiple sclerosis, arthritis, osteoporosis and rickets. Recent research even shows vitamin D to be preventive for various types of cancer, particularly cancers of the breast, prostate and colon.

How big a problem is vitamin D deficiency? Holick's own laboratory demonstrated that a random study of Boston residents showed that fully 42% were vitamin D deficient.

From a nutritional standpoint, Holick examines the problem of getting adequate amounts of vitamin D from our food sources, and explains that the efficiency of production of vitamin D through sun exposed skin, and the amount and quality of vitamin D produced, is on all counts superior to any possible food or supplement. And the benefits of sunlight include enhanced bone health, cellular health, organ health, autoimmune health and mood-related health.

Holick takes great pains to explain that he is NOT an advocate of tanning. In lengthy discussion, he explains the importance of avoiding sunburn, and using broad-spectrum sun screen after a short period of skin exposure to the direct rays of the sun. ("Short period" is carefully defined, and depends on time of day, time of year, latitude and skin type. Clear and specific charts are included so readers can easily calculate their own optimal sun exposure.)

He also gives guidelines for indoor tanning, which he advocates when the real thing is in short supply, and he discusses the effects of sunlight on psychological health and sleep patterns.

Holick's book reads almost like a detective story, laying out the arguments for a relationship with sun and sunlight in terms easily understood by the layperson. He begins with the basic science of sunlight, then gives an in-depth discussion of skin cancer/sunshine facts and myths, as this is an area where people are particularly fearful. He also talks in detail about the sun and wrinkles, a concern that keeps many out of the sun, and contributes to the rise of vitamin D deficiency. In a chapter titled "Rx: Sun" he explains the science of sunshine as practical medicine.

Dr. Holick is well aware of the rise in the incidence of skin cancer; he is also a fearless advocate of appropriate sun exposure in the interest of human health. On the connection between UV radiation and cancer he says, "Despite the attention the 10th Report on Carcinogens received when UV radiation was put on its list of known human carcinogens, the inclusion means nothing more than that overexposure to sunlight or a tanning bed may increase your risk of skin cancer. There are few people around who would deny this fact." (p.181)

Reviewers of Holick's book have noted that he is to vitamin D what Linus Pauling was to vitamin C. And to those who have been involved in health research or alternative medicine for any length of time, his work is not shocking; it is more of an affirmation - a description of the intricate interconnection between man and his environment.

So, where's the problem? What is the controversy?

As Holick makes clear, The UV Advantage was written in response to the "anti-sun lobby" that has made it its job to convince us that no amount of sun exposure is safe. In fact, "So desperate is the anti-sun lobby to convince you of the dangers of the sun so that you will buy its products year-round, its representatives will tell you with a straight face that if it's February in Boston and you're planning to walk to the corner store.you should wear sunscreen. This is wrongheaded and alarmist.[it] is but one example of the kinds of inaccurate information the anti-sun lobby puts out to alarm people. In doing so, it convinces people of the need for its products and services." (p. 12) "The scare tactics of the cosme-ceutical industry have been embraced by most of the dermatology profession." (p.13)

And, of course, the products developed to prevent sunburn (which in fact may have exacerbated the cancer-related problems of overexposure to the sun by making it possible for people to be in the sun much longer without burning) are making vast sums of money for the companies producing them.

In February of 2004, as this book was nearing publication, Holick was asked to resign as professor of dermatology at Boston University because he advocated moderate exposure to sunlight. In spite of his years of research in the field, and his eminent qualifications to write on the subject, the Dermatology Department seems to have found his statements at odds with the medical profession's consensus on the damaging effects of sunlight. In the words of Ralph Moss, noted cancer researcher (www.cancerdecions.com), "Despite scientific uncertainty [as to the connection between sunlight and melanoma], the attack on Dr. Holick has taken on a quasi-moralistic tone. Some dermatologists, possibly frustrated at the failure of most of their treatments to reverse advanced melanoma, now regard sun exposure without sunblock as analogous to promiscuous sex without condoms."

In an article in the Boston Globe in April of 2004, Dr. Barbara Gilchrest, the department chairwoman said to be responsible for dismissing Holick because of his book, was quoted as saying, "I read better things in ladies' magazines," and Holick's book "is an embarrassment for this institution and an embarrassment for him."

What is really at stake here is something important for all who would take responsibility for their own health, and that is access to scientific research in an atmosphere of tolerance and open debate. If advocating a few minutes of sunshine two or three times a week can get you blackballed by your profession, in spite of innumerable prior accomplishments, then we should all be concerned about the impartiality of the mainstream position on health topics of all sorts.

The good news here is that, because of the controversy, Holick has experienced a crush of interview requests from media outlets since his book was published, and he has had much more opportunity to get his message out than would have been possible with the book alone. In fact, he said, the critics "are doing me a great favor because they are now raising this to a level I hadn't expected."

(end)

MORE ABOUT VITAMIN D: http://www.doctoryourself.com/dvitamin.htm

DEPRESSION HELPED BY ARTHRITIS TREATMENT

F. R. writes:

"I have had some problems with arthritis in my hands and feet. I searched the Internet for natural solutions and that's how I came to find Doctor Yourself. I tried the suggestion I read for taking 1,000 mg of vitamin C and 1,000 mg of niacinamide three times a day and my arthritis literally went away. I also generally felt much better than I ever had. Apparently, I had a mild case of depression and didn't even know it. I looked at some of the other benefits of niacinamide and found these sites valuable for both arthritis and depression.

http://www.doctoryourself.com/arthritis_II.html http://www.doctoryourself.com/arthritis.html http://www.doctoryourself.com/kaufman3.html http://www.doctoryourself.com/JOM1.html http://www.doctoryourself.com/kaufman5.html http://www.doctoryourself.com/news/v2n7.txt

"I also take a balanced high-potency B-complex three times a day and the other things suggested at http://www.doctoryourself.com/news/v2n7.txt . I found this quote by Andrew Saul to be very true in my particular case: "The reason one nutrient can cure so many different illnesses is because a deficiency of one nutrient can cause many different illnesses."

SPREADING THE MESSAGE

Doctor Yourself Staff Volunteer Christine Gundersen in Denver, PA suggests:

"Sometimes spreading the Doctor Yourself message is as easy as asking. My chiropractor recently launched a website. I noticed that he had links to health websites in one section so I emailed him and suggested www.doctoryourself.com. He liked the content and added the link to his site. You can do the same."

HELP WANTED

**Are you, like us, a natural health enthusiast? (aka, "health nut")

**Did you enjoy reading the volunteer-written articles in this issue of the Newsletter?

**Do you try to share your knowledge and/or experiences with friends only to be looked at as if you have two heads?

**Would you like a forum for those experiences and satisfaction for your thirst to learn more?

**Are you an expert in one or more natural health modalities wishing to share your knowledge in a non-commercial way that could make a difference in people's lives?

If any of the above applies to you, we would love to give you the opportunity to make a difference by volunteering to research and write articles for the DOCTOR YOURSELF newsletter. After all, as Dr. Saul always says, "If you aren't a health nut, than what kind of a nut are you?"

To find out more about joining our volunteer newsletter team, please send an email with "VOLUNTEER WRITER" in the subject line to the this address: dyteam@gmail.com

MENIERE'S SYNDROME:

Dottie writes:

"While researching Meniere's syndrome for a friend, I luckily happened upon the Doctor Yourself website ( http://www.doctoryourself.com/ears.html ). My friend was totally disabled due to her dizziness. She had had a previous bout of this and found that the medications prescribed by her physician were to no advantage. This time around she was going into a major depression, thinking that this was going to be her life for the rest of her life. The mention in your article about the possibility of a cervical vertebrae/spinal connection raised a red flag for me, as I knew she has had ongoing problems of this nature. Upon passing your article along to her via e-mail, she went to her chiropractor, who concurred with your "possibility", which turned out to be "right on." Today, she has thanked me for "saving her life." She states that since her chiropractic adjustment she is 98% returned to her usual wellness and productivity. This vibrant, active lady is back in the swing of things!

"So, there! You are providing an invaluable service, for which I thank you profusely. Gladly, there is often another angle to our health problems."

(Editor's note: In addition to being cured of Meniere's as described in the above-mentioned article, my own father's artwork is posted at http://www.doctoryourself.com/contentsWES.html )

COMING SOON: Part Four of UNSTRESS YOUR LIFE, by John Mosher, PhD.

SEE YOU NEXT MONTH, and anytime you like at DOCTORYOURSELF.COM!

Privacy Statement:

We do not sell, and we do not share, our mailing list or your email address with anyone. We never send out advertisements of any kind. You may notice that there is no advertising at http://doctoryourself.com and no advertising in this newsletter. We have no financial connection with the supplement industry. We do not sell vitamins or other health products, except for Dr. Saul's books, which help fund these free public services.

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.

"DOCTOR YOURSELF" "DoctorYourself.com" and "Doctor Yourself Newsletter" are service marks of Andrew W. Saul. All rights reserved.

Copyright c 2005 and prior years Andrew W. Saul doctoryourself.com/contact.html . Permission to reproduce single copies of this newsletter FOR NON-COMMERCIAL, PERSONAL USE ONLY is hereby granted providing no alteration of content is made and authorship credit is given.

For information about my book, "DOCTOR YOURSELF: Natural Healing that Works" please go to http://www.doctoryourself.com/saulbooks.html .

"Don't feel you owe me any respect; you can listen or not, as you please." (Benjamin Franklin)