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Orthomolecular Medicine News Service, Feb 13, 2023

Do You Want to Die Old, or Sick?

Commentary by Tom Taylor

OMNS (Feb 13, 2023) We are somewhat indoctrinated by prior generations to eventually expect to spend a few years in the old folks' home being sick, but how avoidable is that? The associated question I carry around is, "Why save for retirement if all you are going to do is spend it on doctors and hospitals?" Isn't health the first wealth?

In my age group, one spends a noticeable amount of time attending funerals, being a pallbearer, or taking folks to the architecturally gorgeous hospitals for one treatment or another. Have I so failed in spreading the word about vitamin C that this will cause me to be forever making these trips -- or as in Greek mythology, continually push a rock up the hill like Sisyphus ? [1]

I have visited enough hospitals to conclude that, although we used to build beautiful churches, now it seems we are building beautiful hospitals. The shift seems to be somewhat timed with the arrival of the Flexner Report and Ancel Keys on the world stage. Flexner facilitated a more or less medical monopoly [2] and Keys is credited with setting us off on the dietary fat avoidance path. [3]

One current observable trend among doctors who seem to live well off internet videos is longevity versus belly fat. [4, 5] Note the two different points of view. Having attended my share of funerals, my personal database states that longevity and health are clearly related to avoiding excess weight. The anchor point in this mental graph of mine is singer Israel Kamakawiwoʻole of "Somewhere over the Rainbow" fame. [6] Sadly, when he died at 38, he weighed 750 pounds. On my mental graph, one advantage is being a pallbearer for those that made it to age 80 -- because lifting them isn't that much of a struggle. The heavy ones are mostly gone by then.

I am 69, and in my age group and with my advocacy for vitamin C, I get the regular question, "Well, Tom, how long do you expect to live?" My answer is always 93. That seems to be the common life span of the vitamin C crowd, e.g., Linus Pauling, [7] so I go with that number and plan accordingly. Meanwhile I imagine that several people annoyed by my vitamin C advocacy are waiting for their schadenfreude moment [8] for me.

So back to the question of do you want to die old or die sick? The answer if one favors dying old, is to read some of the pointers at the end of this article. But my example is Uncle Eddie. Eddie died raking leaves one fall at age 88. He kept his weight down, ate lots of fresh vegetables and did plenty of gardening. That is sufficiently close to dying with your boots on for me. My detractors will point out that Eddie's solution to many of life's minor problems was to have a Coca-Cola. Would laying off the Cokes have gotten him to 93? This clearly needs more research, but I imagine that the Coca-Cola Company would like you to have a Coke while you think about this one.

So, did big pharma learn from Coca-Cola advertising? Well according to sugar-is-the-greatest-health-pandemic-of-our-lifetime researcher Dr. Joan Ifland, the medical establishment probably learned marketing from the cigarette and later packaged food industry. [9] Dr. Ifland is convinced that sugar's effect on us is profound and detrimental-- and she has the facts to back up her opinion. However, she has discovered that having a position that brings nobody immediate money or immediate happiness is a hard sell. And I imagine that the Coca-Cola Company would like you to have a Coke Zero while you contemplate her points.

And one last thought I will attribute to Dr. Diana Schwarzbein is, "If you only want to live to 50, eat anything you want, do anything you want to do, your body will put up with abuse until then." [10] Ok, so then by extension, exactly how did Methuselah make it to 969 years? [11] We can only be certain he was not eating our modern fast-food diet.

In the video of reference [4], titled "There's No Such Thing as An Overweight Healthy Person", Dr. Joel Fuhrman, M.D. states that if we are honest with ourselves and used his recommended BMI of 23 instead of the more common 25 as a maximum healthy weight, then 89% of Americans are overweight. Quite possibly many of the rest are heavy smokers and alcoholics. That would leave maybe 2.4% who he feels are healthy and a "normal" weight. That is a tough one to swallow as it throws nearly all of us, including me, into the overweight or non-healthy category.

The point of this article is not to berate anyone about weight, but to merely bring to light that there is a lot of data that correlates well lived longevity and weight. Additionally, that weight underlies many of the diseases of our citizenry, especially as we age. We all have many challenges we are willing to work on, and being overweight is just one of them. Between now and my age 93, should I make it those 25 years, I will keep this factoid in mind.

In closing, writing for Orthomolecular Medicine News Service helps me assimilate this material, and I hope it helps you a bit too. In the meantime, I feel confident I will continue to serve as a pallbearer for some folks who essentially said to me at some point, "But Tom, I like my sugar!"


  • 78-Year-Old Mega dosing 30 grams of Vitamin C per day for 40 years. This wipes out his allergies and he has hardly ever been sick. "My Personal Story of Mega-dosing Vitamin C"
  • For one of the best sources of pragmatic and extensive health research but written for the general population, I direct you to the several books authored by Dr. Thomas Levy. His website is:
  • For a very broad health education, without having to turn up to class or learn to draw blood, the videos from The Silicon Valley Health Institute will get you well down that road.
  • If you are trying to search for natural solutions to a specific health issue, try Organization is a bit eclectic, but the search bar works well.
  • What supplements should I take? There are many confusing answers and no perfect one. The conclusion to this recent OMNS article has a good list from a credible source.
  • Cancer? Try "Summary of Recent Research with Three Nutrients in the War Against Cancer"
    Also see Riordan Clinic paper listed below.
  • Blood Pressure? Try "Vitamin C Reduces Blood Pressure"
  • Is all of this worth the effort? Try my paper from 2021, "Why I am Healthier at 68 than at 12?"
  • Vitamin C is good for nearly everything, but it takes most of us, including me, a long while to believe that one. Dr. Levy, referenced above, likes to say there are not 12,000 unique diseases as is commonly believed but the number is closer to one! That one being a lack of antioxidants and vitamin C is a cheap and easy source of antioxidants.
    Speed and massive retaliation! The moment you feel that drippy nose, or excessive fatigue, take action. That action is mega dosing vitamin C. Waiting for a day allows the disease to become established and fighting will be a whole lot harder.
    • My favorite vitamin C lecture is by Dr. Robert Cathcart. It is rapid pace, but great insight. You may need to listen a few times. "(2006-09) Robert Cathcart - Mega C for Viral & Other Diseases" Skip down and start at the 4:58 time mark.
      • Dr. Cathcart developed the concept of titration to bowel tolerance. This means the ideal dose of vitamin C when sick is when you suddenly start feeling better, but your bowels feel a little squeamish. This link explains the concept. It works well.
      • Here is Dr. Cathcart explaining how to prepare and give vitamin C as an IV. This will essentially mainline vitamin C, skip all the pills, and I think it avoids the squeamish bowel problem.
    • I say to any who will listen, if I get in a bad way take me to the Riordan Clinic in Wichita, KS, USA. It is not tied to either big pharma or big government, and have made their own way and greatly advanced vitamin C therapy.
    • If you like to just watch the videos, my old article "Vitamin C Material: Where to Start, What to Watch" is still current. Knowledge on vitamin C has been well established for decades. Acceptance by pharma-dominated medicine is still underway.


1. Sisyphus.

2. The Flexner Report.

3. How Ancel Keys Brainwashed the Masses Into Fearing Meat (He's Wrong).

4. There's No Such Thing as An Overweight Healthy Person. YouTube,

5. Lyon G. How To BUILD MUSCLE & Lose Belly Fat For LONGEVITY. Youtube,

6. Kamakawiwoʻol I. Somewhere over the Rainbow. Youtube,

7. Linus Pauling.

8. Schadenfreude.

9. Ifland J. (2019) Food Sensitivities and Health. YouTube,

10. Schwartzbein D. Survival of the Smartest. YouTube,

11. Methuselah.

(Tom Taylor took an interest in vitamin C two decades ago, resulting in him eliminating his allergies, his headaches, his high blood pressure, and his glasses. He writes occasional OMNS papers to help himself and others assimilate the information. His career has spanned petroleum engineering and geophysics to software development.)

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