Why I Like the Natural Way
My uncle worked for an oil company in Texas all his life. The oil company also owned the land as well as the oil rights. In 1955 the company decided to eradicate coyotes through cyanide-baited traps. The next year, the place was overrun with rabbits and they tried to shoot the rabbits. There were too many rabbits to control by shooting, so they stopped the cyanide poisoning of coyotes.
A few years later they decided to eradicate the mesquites. They sprayed aerially with an herbicide (probably akin to Agent Orange) but the mesquites were not eradicated. However, my aunt’s father who lived with them died of leukemia soon afterward. Their water supply was from a cistern that was open to the atmosphere and thus the chemicals.
Later my aunt died, also from leukemia. The mesquites are still there, apparently as healthy as ever. However, before they sprayed, there was an abundance of quail and other wild game. After the spraying, there were few quail or other wild animals.
Several years later my brother worked on the same ranch. One of his jobs was spraying the mesquite from a truck-mounted sprayer. He quit working there several years ago, but has had several surgeries for skin cancer. His wife has breast cancer.
I have another relative through marriage who sprayed her fruit trees. I called her last weekend and asked her whether she would like some peaches that I had bought. She said that she had been overexposed to pesticides while spraying her orchard and could not eat anything that had been sprayed. She said that if she did, she would have a kidney infection soon afterward.
My wife became allergic to petrochemicals after our house was sprayed improperly for termites (by a licensed operator) about 30 years ago. She required hospitalization and we had to build a “safe” room for her–walls and windows were sealed with aluminum foil, charcoal air filters were used, only organic food and spring water was consumed. She has since recovered and can function in a more normal environment.
This is why I appreciate those who make a stand for the natural way.
Editor’s Response: The Fall 2002 issue of the journal is devoted to the subject of pesticides and the damage they do.
Today, there is a plethora of opinions regarding which dietary supplements are most beneficial. As mentioned in your article on dietary supplements (Spring 2002), Standard Process supplements have a lower listed “potency.” However, they actually are highly concentrated, biologically active, organic nutrient-dense foods in a capsule with all of the known and unknown cofactors intact to help the body heal.
It is a mistake to think that ascorbic acid is vitamin C and that the mixed tocopherols are vitamin E. Both are only the antioxidant fraction of the vitamin complex of which they are a part. Their role is to preserve the components of the vitamin complex. The true C complex contains enzymes, the major one being tyrosinase, containing copper. In addition, the C complex has the following vitamin factors: P, K and J, all accompanied by known and unknown synergistic factors, which give the complex its functional potency. The entire E complex contains vitamins F, A, K and some forms of vitamin D. Manganese and selenium are present along with enzymes and the usual synergistic cofactors. In whole form, these nutrients are highly effective, even though they must be listed as “low potency.”
Another point: synthetic vitamins are mirror images of natural vitamins. The human body cannot properly utilize synthetic (mirror image) fractions in the same way that natural complexes find their way into the biological reactions so essential to tissue repair and the sustenance of life. A synthetic vitamin fraction can only be utilized for a drug or pharmacological effect. As is well known, and never denied, the effect of a drug is palliative, not curative.
The body is designed to utilize food in its whole form. If you eat incomplete foods, such as refined tocopherols, all the missing factors are borrowed from the tissue reserves in order to make the partial food usable. Sooner or later, depending on the patient’s past eating habits, there will be a deficiency of those nutrients, causing what is referred to as a “reversal of symptoms.” In other words, the original problem will return.
David Morris, DC
Mathematician Not Wincing
Thank you so much for Charles Eisenstein’s article “The Ethics of Eating Meat” (Summer 2002). It was truly beautiful: gracious, thoughtful, thorough and dead on. The mathematician in me didn’t wince at all as Descartes and Newton were connected to the modern dualism with its emphasis on materialism and abhorrence of death. Rightmindedness and respect can allow us to raise, slaughter and eat animals and plants in an ethical way.
I look forward to a more widespread understanding that the Newtonian model and the Cartesian principles (including the separation of body and mind), while helpful in their day, are incomplete and wrong. Those ideas have led us to a position that can no longer sustain life.
Susan J. Dorey
San Rafael, California
I am a volunteer with a program called Life Options in Houston, Texas that provides services for homeless pregnant women, their children, and often families. They come from varied backgrounds, some involving foster care, birth in prison, addiction at birth to drugs, sexual abuse–the list goes on and on. The services include and are not limited to housing, parenting classes, group interaction (forming a new family for them) and education. Every Thursday evening all the girls and their children gather at the agency for a meal and community with each other. I assist in cooking for the family and our goal is to provide meals that are simple, wholesome and reproducible.
Most of the women shun breast feeding due to their current cultural models and give their newborns formula which is all soy-based. I run into a roadblock when trying to find alternatives for this travesty. Most are moderately employed if at all and have the equivalent of food stamps and Medicaid services. In other words, they are currently in a system that does not support or give an opportunity for whole raw milk.
My question: how can I find an alternative that will be easy and cost effective for these girls and provide a stair-stepped education process that will encourage curiosity and perhaps eventually activism on the subject of health from birth and beyond?
Editor’s Response: This is a difficult question to answer. A first step would be to connect with the administrators of the formula giveaway program and urge them to provide milk-based formula. Then teach the girls how to supplement their babies’ diets with egg yolk and cod liver oil. Perhaps a local chapter could help provide those items (like cod liver oil) that the girls cannot afford. Cooking classes should stress the preparation of nutrient-dense foods, such as broth-based soups and liver. The long-term solution would be for such programs to be attached to a working farm, so that the babies and their mothers can be provided with farm fresh food including raw milk. State laws currently prevent this in many states, so we all need to work together to bring about needed change.
Raw Milk and Osteoporosis
I recently met an expert on pasteurization who casually mentioned that the process destroys 34 enzymes in milk. As one of the great many people lost to the dairy industry as a customer because of alternative practitioner advice that I had “lactose intolerance,” I wondered whether the destruction of the lactase enzyme might be significant in my store-bought milk.
I started drinking quantities of fresh raw milk and had no signs of indigestion nor the mucus I used to get. My wife had both kinds of milk in the fridge for some months and I found if I had just a little of the pasteurized stuff, within an hour the mucus returned.
Then I realized that an arthritic joint at the base of one of my big toes–an old injury site which had gotten so bad my orthopaedic surgeon wanted to fuse the joint to alleviate the pain–had majorly improved. The range of movement deficit which had caused me to limp during the last ten years was almost rectified and the pain gone. This previously swollen joint also reduced in size back to normal.
I am a test group of one, however there were no other variables in my life except the addition to my diet of one-half to one pint each day of fresh Jersey milk for about three months. My doctors can’t believe you can reverse arthritis, but I just did, through sheer inadvertence, not any placebo effect or wishful thinking.
All of the above makes me wonder whether it is pasteurization and the destruction of enzymes that has led to the current plague of arthritis and osteoporosis, because the calcium in processed milk is less assimilable.
Just wanted to drop you a quick note to say thanks. Our new baby son, Derek, was born 2 1/2 weeks ago, and he barely cries at all! He is the quintessential, healthy baby described by Weston Price in his book. We are so thrilled. Such a change from our first son, who is now 3 1/2, who was a good baby, but cried a lot and I never could figure out why. Now I know he was just hungry and my milk was not rich enough in what he needed. My milk is certainly rich enough now with all the pasture-fed butter, meat and raw cheeses I’m eating. Another astounding thing. . . I can eat anything and my milk does not cause our baby any digestive problems. He does not spit up and does not even need to be burped. He burps himself!
One piece of amazing news. Little Derek turned over at just two weeks old! I put him to sleep on his tummy, and he turned himself onto his back. I’m wondering whether this was commonplace back when folks had a nutritious diet. Perhaps our expectation that babies don’t roll over until several months old is not based on what they should really do if fed rich, nutritious breast milk. Have you heard similar stories from other mothers?
Today little Derek turned over the other direction–my husband thought it was a fluke, so little Derek had to prove him wrong! He has now turned from tummy to back and back to tummy in the span of four days. He can also pick his head up to 90 degrees while on his tummy and can hold his head steady while I am holding him upright (albeit for only 10-15 seconds or so). I am starting to understand what a truly healthy baby is supposed to be like. It certainly is different from what the baby books describe!
Anyway, thank you for getting the word out and helping to make our second baby such a delight.
A Big Mistake
I was so glad to read your report on the problems with modern soy foods. I have felt as though I have been losing my mind since 1998–that was the year I purchased a three-month supply of soy isoflavone supplements from a vitamin catalog.
After two weeks on the capsules, I noticed that my gums were all puffy, swollen and bleeding. Prior to this I never had any dental problems. My wisdom teeth became infected and I was advised to have them removed. Big mistake! I have battled TMJ ever since. After two months on the capsules, I had excruciating chest pain. My doctor thought it was “heartburn” and treated me with increasingly higher and higher doses of Prilosec, then Prevacid.
By that time, I had quit the soy capsules. My gum condition resolved but not the chest pain. A GI doctor did an endoscopy of my esophagus and found nothing wrong. A 24-hour pH monitor was negative for acid reflux. I changed doctors and finally found one who gave me a simple chest X-ray.
He was alarmed to find a growth in my chest the size of a baseball! I went in for an MRI and ended up with a thoracotomy at age 40. I had a huge benign cyst that had suddenly grown on the outer wall of my esophagus. (That’s why it was missed by the endoscopy.) I lost a rib to the surgery and I’m now in chronic pain from the operation and the removal of my wisdom teeth.
I am convinced that the downhill slide of my health all started with those stupid soy isoflavone capsules! They should have been outlawed from the consumer market. I regret the day I was “bamboozled” into taking them for heart and bone “benefits.” Please keep up your fight against soy propaganda.
I thought I knew a lot about nutrition by subscribing to numerous monthly letters such as those by Julian Whitaker, Andrew Weil, Dr. Atkins and several more over a period of 20 years. Because of these we never adopted the lowfat diet. We eat pretty much the same as we did before. We eat butter every day and have red meat often, including pork chops. Occasionally we eat fish and chicken. I eat a lot of peanut butter but not the hydrogenated kind. I use my electric drill and a beater to mix up the old-fashioned kind. Just peanuts and salt. I’m surprised we can still buy the natural kind.
These have paid off well because I am 78 and my wife is 75. We don’t take any medicine. Blood pressure is normal and we don’t get colds. I’ve had pneumonia but haven’t had a cold for 40 years. I have a pacemaker which I probably didn’t need but 55 years of smoking had caused some irregular heart beat. I gave up smoking a couple years ago. It was a habit I picked up during three years overseas during WWII.
Although I wouldn’t say smoking is good for anyone, I think it has become a scapegoat for many other medical problems to which it is not necessarily related. I recently had several medical tests for blocked arteries. They didn’t find anything requiring attention at this time. If smoking causes blocked arteries, I should have failed both these tests. My wife had the same tests and came out “clean” on both. We know several women about our age or younger who never smoked and were considered low risk who had massive heart attacks and required quadruple bypass surgery. They were eating the so-called heart healthy diet as prescribed by their doctors.
However, beyond all this, your articles about vegetable oils and soy products have opened up a whole new area that has been neglected by others. For example we had been using canola oil thinking it is OK; also thought that soy was OK, but not now.
The prescription medicine phenomenon has gotten totally out of hand. If they get it included in Medicare it will open another Pandora’s Box of abuse.
In summary let me say: with the loud music to make the youngsters deaf, suntan lotion to stop vitamin D production, the myth that UV entering the eyes is bad, we are causing all sorts of unexpected problems. The Russians discovered 30 years ago that the long winters in Siberia caused children to develop mood disorders like ADD, which is now epidemic in US–I read about this in Time Magazine about 1973. Add to that the politically correct diet and the load of sick people will become impossibly heavy. Only then will someone in authority stop and say, “What happened?” Then maybe something will be done to start turning it around. It will be a long road back, dragging the drug companies and the AMA kicking and screaming all the way!
Thank you so much for all the valuable information you have provided for those who will listen.
I am much impressed by the growth of the Weston A. Price Foundation, with your wide national outreach, well-attended conferences and over 100 active local chapters.
How perplexing when we read of mothers abandoning newly born infants in dumpster bins, until one learns that manganese deprivation experiments in elephants causes them to abandon and neglect their offspring. White bread stripped of bran loses most of its manganese. Can a legal argument be made that junk food manufacturers are unintentionally promoting infanticide? Like second-hand smoke, junk food kills innocent victims! The time is near when huge class action law suits will bring down junk food companies.
Richard M. Dell’Orfano
Editor’s Response: Both a shortage and an overload of manganese can cause problems. Mark Purdey has shown that manganese overload can cause Kruetzfeld-Jakob disease, with its attendant dementia and violent tendencies. We can bring down the junk food companies without law suits by simply refusing to eat their products!
A Wise Diet
I can’t tell you how much I appreciate your work! I heard Dr. Cowan speak recently and changed my diet completely. My husband and I had been on a vegetarian diet with only olive oil and a bit of butter for me. My health was going downhill with a lot of pain in the joints, spine and hips. At times my lower back was so painful I had to stay in bed. Now, after five months on your wise diet, my pain is completely gone and I can work hard in my garden without any repercussions. And my depression is lifted like a dark veil!
By the way, I had my lipid panel checked recently and had excellent results with a cholesterol of 183 and an HDL/LDL ratio of 2.2. Thank you so much for your good work!
Myrtle Point, OR
Vitamin A Deficiency
I began having problems with rough and red skin on my face, and little bumps on my upper arms. My research pointed to a possible vitamin A deficiency so I tried 10,000 IU per day (in a blend with D, from fish oil) for a few weeks. I saw no improvement whatsoever, so I thought I’d hit a dead end. But something kept telling me to try more, so I read up on vitamin A toxicity and decided to give 20,000 IU per day a try.
After discontinuing the vitamin A for a couple of weeks (to more clearly separate the results of one dosage from the other), I started on 20,000 IU per day. The results were immediate and dramatic! In three days, the skin on my face was back to a softness it hadn’t had in a long, long time. And not only that, numerous other complaints of long standing (one of 30 years!) began to fade.
I never was a vegetarian–I eat beef (very rare, with fat) and I eat egg yolks. I also eat lots of dark green leafy vegetables and yams, both with butter. So it seems strange that I could have become vitamin A deficient, but that is what happened. My experience demonstrates what Dr. Roger Williams called “biochemical individuality.” I wonder how many folks are out there who are reluctant to consider that they could have a vitamin deficiency because of the implication by “experts” that the RDA amounts are enough for everyone. This experience has certainly made me look at those numbers in a whole new light!
Santa Clara, CA
Editor’s Response: One factor that can cause an elevated requirement for vitamin A is increased exposure to pesticides and environmental contaminants. See the article by Dr. Bill Plapp.
Note: We have had several letters requesting clarification on flaxseed and flax oil. These were addressed in the “Know Your Fats” column of the Winter 2002 issue of Wise Traditions.