healthcare

Let bodily fluids and solids (and food) be thy medicine

Craig Sams imagines the health farms of the future where ‘super healthy’ humans are raised.

Until just over a decade ago the missus and I would go to Shrubland Hall Health Clinic up in Suffolk, where we’d enjoy vegetarian food, bracing country walks, massage, pilates and other healthful activities and return refreshed and invigorated. They closed in 2006 and more recently we go to Amchara in Somerset, which offers a vegetable juice fast, yoga, massage and colonics. Amchara are big on probiotics, which you have, with psyllium, with every liquid ‘meal.’ Their therapy is designed to break your bad dietary habits and restore your gut flora. But is this enough? What if your gut flora are too degraded to be restored? What if candida or other ‘bad bugs’ are in control? What if the ‘good bugs’ have been wiped out and can’t re-establish?

The average kid has 17 courses of antibiotics before they reach maturity. Doctors carelessly prescribe them to adults too for minor problems like runny noses or tummyache, problems that could be cured by a day or two of bed rest or fasting. Antibiotics destroy your gut flora. So do steroids, some vaccines, stress, alcohol and low fibre diet. The resulting gut dysbiosis is associated with colitis, IBS, multiple sclerosis,autism,anorexia, depression, OCD, migraines and Parkinson’s disease.

A particular dangerous side effect of taking antibiotics is Clostridium difficile. It’s a disease that was practically unknown until the advent of antibiotics. Now 30,000 Americans a year die from it and about 5000 in the UK. Clostridium takes over your gut flora after the 10,000 different bacteria, fungi and archaea in your gut are wiped out by a dose of antibiotics. Some of the good bugs survive, mainly by hiding in your appendix until the antibiotics are stopped. Then they can try to combat the Clostridium. If they fail the triumphant Clostridium leads to diarrhea, abdominal pain and in about 6% of cases, death. The conventional cure is more and stronger antibiotics. This works in about 25% of the cases but has a 50% relapse rate. There is another cure that has a 90% success rate, though. That’s faecal transplantation, also known as stool transplantation. It works for colitis, IBS, candida and other gut diseases, not just Clostridium. Only one hospital in Britain offers it as it’s a bit complicated. First you have to find a ‘donor.’ This is a person who has a completely healthy gut flora with no traces of infectious diseases such as AIDS or malaria. These aren’t easy to find. What’s more, faecal transplantation is a messier business than popping pills. A typical treatment programme would require 10 days of daily transplantation. But when it is done properly it can prevent a lifetime of misery and pain.

What about other person-to-person transfers from the healthy to the unwell? At the Society for Neuroscience convention in November 2016 researchers reported on trials that show an injection of blood from a young healthy person can reverse Alzheimer’s and senile dementia, improve cognition and strengthen the heart and liver.

“Could the health farms of the future be real farms? Farms where the farmer is raising healthy humans? What a lovely way to make a living if you’re the one being farmed”

Could the health farms of the future be real farms? Farms where the farmer is raising healthy humans? What a lovely way to make a living if you’re the one being farmed. All you have to do is live in a stress-free and happy environment, eat a balanced diet of organic food, avoid antibiotics, alcohol and risky sex and earn your living by providing a ‘donation’ 2 or 3 times a day. Sure beats mining coal or driving a mini cab.

Imagine: “Welcome to Poucura Health Clinic, Mrs. Jones. We have diagnosed your problem and advise that your donor is Marlene, an extremely fit young woman who has a 100% success rate in curing Clostridium difficile in her donatees. You will stay with us for 10 days and have 2 treatments a day. If you are having forgetfulness issues (we note that you are in your mid 60s and missed an earlier appointment) we can also provide you with a memory-enhancing transfusion from Arthur, whose IQ of 155 reflects his mental acuity. Your diet during your stay will include high-fibre foods, probiotics and inulin to help accelerate the repopulation of your gut with immune-boosting flora.”

Exchanging bodily fluids has been a big no-no and the years of AIDS have made everyone even more cautious. But the war against diseases of modern diet is being lost and doctors are running out of weapons. Hippocrates, the father of medicine, said “all disease begins in the gut, ” adding “let food be your medicine and your medicine be your food.” To fast track this we can pay people to be really healthy and then let their bodily fluids and solids be our medicine, along with food. Cures like this only last if they are followed by lifestyle changes. But it’s a lot easier to change your lifestyle when the gut flora that are telling your brain what to eat are the good ones that are always urging healthy choices.

Cheer up, we just reversed humanity’s decline

OK, reversing humanity’s decline took 40 or 50 years longer than we thought. But let’s celebrate it anyway, writes Craig Sams

Could this be the Big Lifestyle Turnaround that we’ve been dreaming about and waiting for?

Every year for decades there has been an annual increase in new cases of Type 2 diabetes, which correlates with comparable figures for obesity, which is a factor in cancer and heart disease. That’s the bad news. What’s the good news?

Over the last 6 years (averaged to avoid ‘blips’) research shows there has been a significant DECLINE in incidence of diabetes in the US. Diabetes is still happening, but less and less each year. That means that, going forward, there will likely be less cancer, less obesity and less heart disease. The endless upward graph is going into a downturn.

The researchers, at the US Governments Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), took a shot at what might be behind this encouraging news. Their studied conclusion? People are more health conscious than hitherto and this is reflected in healthy and informed food choices and greater commitment to regular exercise and bodywork, including yoga and pilates. In other words, the message of healthy living is getting through. More people than ever are shopping at natural food stores or Whole Foods Market. Supermarkets are giving more and more space to organic and healthy foods. We’ve always said that this could happen and now the evidence is in that a healthy lifestyle prevents degenerative disease.

So where does that put Coca Cola? Their sales are down in the US, with the international market also weakening.

And MacDonalds? For seven straight quarters up to the middle of last year, their sales have been dropping with no evidence of a turnaround. Big Macs and Coke once seemed invincible – the obesity epidemic and resulting diabetes soared in parallel with their sales. Now their growth has stalled.

So where is the money going? Last year yoga and pilates studios in the US had sales of $9 billion, up 7.5% year on year. There are 30,000 businesses employing 95,000 people, about three per business. It’s a horde of small enterprises that are capturing people’s longing for physical wellbeing, core strength and flexibility. The yoga bunnies and pilates enthusiasts are alive to nutrition, healthy eating, the gut microbiome and anything else that points them towards a longer, healthier and happier life. There’s little opportunity for scale in this market – there are a few big gym chains but most of this healthy stuff is run by sole practitioners or a small local group that might also include nutritional advice, massage and counseling. In the caring, sharing economy of the future there is a lot more peer-to-peer and a lot less corporate-to-consumer relationship.

It’s not going to be easy to get humankind back on track, though.

The junk food decades from the 1950s to the 2000s meant that a lot of kids were born who inherited the epigenetic legacy of their parents’ poor diet and environment. We know that what you eat affects your health – now we also know it affects your genes and is an undesirable legacy to your children. I won’t go into the detail of DNA methylation and transfer RNAs, but suffice to say that if a father or a mother eats too much sugary and industrial food and is exposed to environmental contaminants such as pesticides, food colouring and preservatives their baby’s start in life is clouded and the kid is more likely to suffer impaired insulin tolerance that could lead to diabetes. The good news is that epigenetics cuts both ways. A lot of the crap that used to screw up our genes is now out of the system – things like DDT, lead, hydrogenated fat, toxic dyes and preservatives and high levels of pesticide, fungicide and herbicide residues in our food are all non-existent or much lower. So going forward we could be passing on healthier and more robust genes.

When we launched Yin-Yang Ltd, the macrobiotic food company that would morph into Whole Earth, Vegeburger and Green & Black’s, we thought the healthy eating revolution would be over by the early 1970s. It was so obvious. We naively thought everyone would go for it – after all, who didn’t want to live a long and healthy life? As my brother Gregory said, we were looking at the future through the wrong end of the telescope. We saw the future, we were just out by 40 or 50 years. Boo-hoo about the ruined lives along the way, but hip hip hurrah for the coming reversal of humanity’s decline.

 

Can I get my NHS no-claims bonus?

Isn’t it amazing that the ‘hippy diet’ the authorities once warned would corrupt a generation is now officially endorsed by the medical establishment, says Craig Sams

Your NHS No Claims Bonus is just one click away!

In 1965 I had the misfortune to be quite low in cash and lying by a roadside in Delhi unable to walk because of the debilitating pain and exhaustion of hepati- tis. The Holy Family Catholic hospital doctor told me I was in urgent need of hospitalisation, but their reception told me there were no beds. Maybe I should have tried a bit of baksheesh.

So, half walking, half crawl- ing, I ended up in Delhi General. After a day I knew I had to move on. I ended up in Peshawar, then Kabul, where a diet of unleavened wholemeal naan and unsweetened tea finally brought success. Within 3 or 4 days I was back on my feet and functional.

Since then I haven’t messed with my health — when you look into the abyss and realise how fragile life can be, you take more care. I never wanted to find myself in such desperate straits again — helpless, hoping someone can save you and feeling sorry for your parents who might never know what happened to their beloved son.

Since 1967 I have dutifully paid, like every good citizen, my National Insurance contributions which, in today’s money, amounts to about £400,000 over 44 years. During that time I have never cost the NHS one penny and haven’t taken up one minute of a doctor’s time with my health problems. That’s partly down to luck, but I cite diet as the main factor.

The experience in India trig- gered my interest in macrobi- otics and led to a career deci- sion to spread the word about healthy diet. This was the foun- dation on which my brother Gregory and I built Whole Earth Foods and which led, indirectly, to the founding of Green & Black’s. I’ve been OK almost all of the time, despite setbacks, bereavements, financial anxieties and stress from business competition. Sometimes I thought I was going mad, but I had seen enough of the dam- age anti-depressants can cause to know that I would never go down that route.

“IF I WERE A CAREFUL DRIVER I’D GET AN ANNUAL REDUCTION IN MY INSURANCE TO REFLECT MY CLEAN CLAIMS HISTORY. WHY NOT HEALTH?”

When Beveridge mapped out the NHS in 1942 his budget projections confidently predict- ed a steep decline in healthcare costs through the 1950s as indoor sanitation, better nutri- tion, clean water and health education would all reduce dis- ease and its treatment costs. Instead there has been a steady increase in sickness and chron- ic illness, triggered by obesity, environmental toxins, sedentary lifestyles and junk food. How disappointing it would have been for him.

Sir Jack Drummond was the man who named Vitamin A and B and who mapped out Britain’s healthy wartime diet that led to record levels of health, despite all the stress and strain of wartime life. Sir Jack was mysteriously murdered in 1953, or he would have been kicking ass at the DOH to make them do something about the Brits’ abysmal post-war dietary choices once they were free to choose.

If I were a careful driver I’d get an annual reduction in my insurance to reflect my clean claims history. Why not health? If a reduced level of claims reflects a saving in expenditure, what’s wrong with the principle extending to National Insurance? Charging people higher contributions/premiums for being sick all the time might be going too far, but rewarding people for conscientiously look- ing after their health shouldn’t be seen as reprehensible. I’d settle for a ‘cashback’ — or perhaps the money saved could be tagged onto my pension on retirement? Good national health policy should include carrots as well as sticks. The state offers no material incen- tive to look after one’s health, just confusing exhortations. A no claims discount would address this. I’m sure Beveridge would approve. And Sir Jack.

Hippy days are here again

Isn’t it amazing that the ‘hippy diet’ the authorities once warned would corrupt a generation is now officially endorsed by the medical establishment, says Craig Sams

Stop the press! Amazing news from researchers…

The British Journal of Cancer recently published a report funded by Cancer Research UK. The report says that 40 per cent of cancers arise from lifestyle factors including poor diet and obesity. Specifically: not enough fibre, not enough vegetables, too much meat and too much alcohol.

In 1966, full of the joys of discovering good health and vitality through macrobiotic diet, my girlfriend and I visited the macrobiotic bookshop in New York. Irma Paul, the owner, sat behind the counter looking morose, not at all the happy image of macrobiotics (Greek for ‘long life’ or ‘big life’) that I expected. She allowed us to look at the books but said that we could not purchase anything.

Her reason? The American Medical Association had recently urged the FBI to bust the bookshop for selling illegal books. The FBI took the books away and went over them with expert advisors from the American Medical Association. The result? The bookshop closed a few days later and the books were taken away, condemned by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and burned. Reader’s Digest later ran a cover story calling macrobiotics ‘The Hippie Diet That’s Killing Our Kids.”

What was the evil message that brought such a fate?  Kiddie porn? Bomb-making instructions? No, much worse as far as the AMA was concerned: these books contained statements that too much meat, not enough fibre, not enough vegetables and too much meat and alcohol could lead to cancer. Exactly what the British Journal of Cancer article now states.

At the time the medical orthodoxy was that cancer was in the genes or just bad luck. Prof Max Parkin, a Cancer Research epidemiologist, commented on the new report: “Many people believe cancer is down to fate or ‘in the genes’…it’s clear that 40 per cent of cancers are caused by things we have the power to change.” I wonder where ‘many people’ got that wacky idea? Perhaps from listening to all the medical experts who told them for decades they couldn’t do anything to prevent cancer.

In the 1950s American magazines ran ads extolling the preference of doctors for Camel brand cigarettes. Oh dear. I wonder how many people took up smoking because of these role models…and died?

In the 50s Wilhelm Reich talked about the ‘Emotional Plague’ – a disease that parents gave to their children by beating them and abusing them, passing on sick behaviour from one generation to the next. He argued for sexual liberation and advocated condom use and economic independence for women. Several tonnes of his books were burned by the FDA and he died in prison in 1956.  Now it’s illegal to beat kids, women are liberated and child abuse condemned.

So, two pioneers of sensible thinking went to their graves bitter and disillusioned and didn’t live to see their ideas become accepted in the mainstream.

What about me? After discovering that the FBI, the AMA and the FDA were hysterically alarmed about macrobiotics, I figured it was at least as powerful as I had thought.

I went to the newly-opened Paradox macrobiotic restaurant that evening and decided then and there that my future would lay in bringing awareness of the joys of healthy eating to as many people as possible. It fulfilled my do-goodism and my revolutionary instincts.

What about the authorities? The same governments that burned books and chucked their authors in jail now support sex education and condom use and urge their citizens to eat more vegetables and wholegrains and to cut down on meat and booze.

Can you imagine any MPs or doctors nowadays plugging cigarettes or urging people to eat junk food and beat their kids?

Is More Research Really Needed?

Stop the presses!  Amazing news from researchers!

The British Journal of Cancer recently published a report funded by Cancer Research UK .  The report says that 40% of cancers arise from lifestyle factors including poor diet and obesity.  Specifically: not enough fibre, not enough vegetables, too much meat and too much alcohol.

In 1966, full of the joys of discovering good health and vitality through macrobiotic diet, my girl friend and I visited the macrobiotic bookshop in New York.  Irma Paul, the owner, sat behind the counter looking morose, not at all the happy image of macrobiotic (Greek for ‘long life’ or ‘big life’) that I expected.  She allowed us to look at the books but said that we could not purchase anything.  Her reason? The American Medical Association had recently urged the FBI to bust the bookshop for selling illegal books.  The FBI took the books away and went over them with expert advisors from the AMA.  The result?  The bookshop closed a few days later and the books were taken away, condemned by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and burned.   Reader’s Digest later ran a cover story calling macrobiotics ‘The Hippie Diet That’s Killing Our Kids”

What was the evil message that brought such a fate?  Kiddie porn? Bomb-making instructions?  No, much worse as far as the AMA was concerned: these books contained statements that too much meat, not enough fibre, not enough vegetables and too much meat and alcohol could lead to cancer.   Exactly what the Britich Journal of Cancer article now states.

At the time the medical orthodoxy was that cancer was in the genes or just bad luck.   Prof Max Parkin, a Cancer Research epidemiologist, commented on the new report: “Many people believe cancer is down to fate or ‘in the genes’ …it’s clear that 40% of cancers are caused by things we have the power to change.”     I wonder where ‘many people’ got that wacky idea?  Perhaps from listening to all the medical experts who told them for decades they couldn’t do anything to prevent cancer.

In the 1950s American magazines ran ads extolling the preference of doctors for Camel brand cigarettes.  Oh dear.  I wonder how many people took up smoking because of these role models?  And died?

In the 50s Wilhelm Reich talked about the ‘Emotional Plague’ – a disease that parents gave to their children by beating them and abusing them, passing on sick behaviour from one generation to the next.  He argued for sexual liberation and advocated condom use and economic independence for women.  Several tons of his books were burned by the FDA and he died in prison in 1956.  Now it’s illegal to beat kids, women are liberated and child abuse condemned.

So two pioneers of sensible thinking went to their graves bitter and disillusioned and didn’t live to see their ideas become accepted in the mainstream. What about me?  After discovering that the FBI, the AMA and the FDA were hysterically alarmed about macrobiotics, I figured it was at least as powerful as I had thought.  I went to the newly-opened Paradox macrobiotic restaurant  that evening and decided then and there that my future would lay in bringing awareness of the joys of healthy eating to as many people as possible.   It fulfilled my do-goodism and my revolutionary instincts.

What about the authorities? The same governments that burned books and chucked their authors in jail now support education in sex and condom use and urge their citizens to eat more vegetables and wholegrains and to cut down on meat and booze.

Can you imagine any MPs or doctors nowadays plugging cigarettes or urging people to eat junk food and beat their kids?

Just Gimme the Drugs,Man - a critique of Big Pharma

Every now and then I clear my spam filter of missives from American lawyers offering me the opportunity to cash in on a bonanza from a class action lawsuit against one of the big drug companies. Huge amounts of money are being made by suing Big Pharma for peddling drugs that don't work, that they knew didn't work and that have awful life-destroying side effects. Respected scientists and medical researchers are shown to have conspired to distort the results so that patented drugs with few beneficial effects were prescribed to millions of gullible patients who wrongly assumed that they could trust their doctor. Just go to www.legaltube.com/breaking-news-hot-list.aspx for all the latest opportunities to get redress.

I'd love to cash in but I haven't taken a prescription drug in more than 45 years, apart from a handful of aspirin and whatever local anaesthetic my dentist uses to numb my gums. I suppose knowing that the life expectancy of doctors is just 58 years and that they are the 3rd leading cause of death in the USA (225,000 deaths a year) is enough to make me wary. But you can’t blame them for dishing out drugs that are backed by peer-reviewed research and articles in prestigious medical journals.

The EU authorities have approved drugs that are submitted on the basis of obfuscation (not mentioning negative outcomes in trials) and on pure fabrication of data. Research data and methodology are distorted to achieve the desired result or you can just make a false assertion and hope to get away with it. All the evidence, in the EU and the US, is that a lot of drugs get approved that are worthless or dangerous.

There is a show at the Wellcome Museum called High Society. It shows a great 1895 ad in which Bayer heroin and aspirin are advertised side by side - heroin being their ‘heroic’ non-addictive replacement for morphine. Selling drugs can be a nasty business, whether they’re legal or illegal.

WikiLeaks revealed that Pfizer paid $75 million to settle claims in Nigeria over killing 11 children and leaving dozens disabled by trialling Trovan on kids with meningitis. Hernia sufferers who had the Kugel mesh patch ended up with all sorts of horrible bowel injuries. Denture creams can cause zinc poisoning. Drugs for diabetes and acne are linked with worsening rather than restoring health. GlaxoSmithKline paid out £475 million last October including £60 million to the whistleblower who alerted authorities to problems with their antidepressant manufacture. More than 13000 lawsuits have been filed against them over their anti-diabetic drug, Avandia, amid claims that at least 83000 heart attacks by 2007 arose from a drug that was known to cause heart attacks as long ago as 1999.

So what does the EU do to improve its control over these scandalous risks? It collaborates with drug companies to crack down on herbal medicines, Ayurvedic and Chinese Traditional Medicines that have been used with remarkably few if any negative side effects for hundreds of years.

Why not crack down on the drug company CEOs? Fines are not enough. They make a fortune out of selling drugs to state-controlled health services. They can easily take the occasional fine in their stride. If a customer of a dope dealer dies it’s front page news and the evildoer has his money confiscated and goes down for a 5 stretch. Why not chief execs?

The Alliance for Natural Health is doing its best to stop this nonsense. Give them money. Sadly, our own Government has no power in this arena - drugs, like agriculture, are controlled in Brussels by unelected Commissioners (in Russia they used to call them Commissars) who collude with drug companies to make sure that your health is under their control, not yours. Read Big Pharma by Jacky Law for an insider’s view into how the drugs business works.

From time to time I take home-grown drugs: comfrey, nettles, viola, hawthorn, wormwood, fennel, melissa lemon balm, to name just a few illicit or potentially illicit medications that help support my generally reliable good health. I grow them myself in my garden, organically. Soon I may face prison if I don’t cease and desist from what could become criminal activity. To the barricades, comrades!