Vitamin C: Primal panacea? Yeah, right!

By Siouxsie Wiles 07/03/2012 75


Those that know me, know I regularly rant about the bastion of local journalism that is the Ponsonby News, a whopping 150 page A4 magazine which lands free in my letter box every month (except January when they take a well earned rest…), one of almost 17,000 distributed around Auckland’s inner suburbs. The Ponsonby News is essentially an enormous advertising feature, and being Ponsonby based, a number of the adverts are for alternative therapies. It also has a number of ‘health correspondents’: John Appleton, who has a website selling vitamin and other supplements, ‘Dr’ Ajit, an Ayurvedic practitioner with a couple of spa’s in Auckland, and more recently an estate agent who recommends bleach as a cure all.

Back in the December issue, John Appleton espoused vitamin C while alongside his column ran a full page advert for the book ‘Primal Panacea’ by Thomas E Levy, which claims to explain how shortages of vitamin C can lead to heart disease and cancer and how this ‘panacea’ (available to buy on Mr Appleton’s online store) can be used to prevent and treat hundreds of infectious diseases.

It is interesting to note that Thomas E Levy, who trained as a medical doctor in the 70’s and then qualified as a lawyer in the mid 90’s, states on his CV, which is available to download on his website, that he is currently an Associate Professor at Capital University of Integrative Medicine (CUIM). Turns out that CUIM was founded by a convicted fraudster and closed its operations over five years ago. Furthermore, it was what is known in the industry as a ‘diploma mill’, offering degrees that were not recognised by official educational accrediting bodies. Despite ‘15 years of research’ Dr Levy has not published a single peer-reviewed article on the link between vitamin C and disease.

Renowned NZ physicist Sir Paul Callaghan, who has colon cancer, has recently gone on record as saying there was no evidence high dose intravenous vitamin C did anything for him (story covered nicely by Grant Jacobs over at Code for life). Being a scientist he took a scientific approach to his vitamin C ‘trial’, measuring the effectiveness of the treatment using a blood test for protein carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA), which indicates cancer levels.

Much like for dieting, there really is no evidence for any substance being a panacea although acetylsalicylic acid, more commonly known as Aspirin, is probably the closest we have to it. Believing vitamin C can prevent and cure all disease may cause life-threatening delays to people starting genuine medical treatment.


75 Responses to “Vitamin C: Primal panacea? Yeah, right!”

  • Thanks for continuing to expose such “merchants”. My wife, currently in year 9 since diagnosis and ongoing treatment of breast cancer, and I get recommended the Vitamin C option roughly once a month by well-meaning but scientifically illiterate people.

  • I note on “research”, I come across people saying they’ve done “x” amount of “research” quite often and I believe what they really mean is they’ve read a bunch of things over a long period.
    They are either knowingly or unknowingly taking advantage of the fact that research is often used to mean conducting experiments and investigating hypotheses in the real world; this gives them more credibility than they deserve.

  • At ‘Liquid Energy’: thanks for commenting. I see you sell vitamins and supplements. Care to show us the evidence for the effectiveness of your products? A lack of response to my request will result in your comment being removed.

  • Hi Alistair, Thanks for commenting. I can’t imagine how difficult things must be for you guys. And certainly not made any easier by constant offers of false hope.

      • Lol! I’m sure you didn’t bother to read “CURING THE INCURABLE – Vitamin C Infectious Diseases and Toxins – Thomas E Levy MD.

        “He quickly found the medical journals were filled with thousands of studies and articles about vitamin  C. Many of them reported similarly dramatic results with a myriad of diseases and other difficult medical conditions. Dr. Levy knew that this was information that all his colleagues needed. Consequently, he was compelled to spend the next four years researching and writing Curing the Incurable. Because this book was written especially for his medical colleagues, Dr.  Levy has taken great care to research, document, and report the vital truths about vitamin C — he cites over 1,200 scientific references.”

        Clearly, conventional doctors are just trained monkeys for (and by) the pharmaceutical billion dollar complex… No wonder they don’t bother to look outside of their little cages…

  • Siouxsie, a blurb for the book runs as follows: His latest book Primal Panacea talks of a hereditary defect which prevents the human body from synthesizing a natural cure-all made by most animals and found in abundance by primal man. Overwhelming documentation proves when one’s blood levels of the “primal panacea” are sufficiently high, it prevents and cures cancer, heart disease, infectious and degenerative diseases, and can neutralize and even reverse damage from virtually all toxins, venoms, and radiation!

    I suppose you could argue that loss-of-function in the metabolic pathway that synthesises vitamin C is an ‘hereditary defect’ – although it’s one we share with the other great apes (& guinea pigs, funnily enough). But there is a major logical flaw in the argument the blurb describes. According to T.E.Levy, vit.C is a ‘cure-all’ made by other animals that prevents cancer, & a lack of it (or of sufficiently high levels, however they’re defined, actually prevents cancer. So… you would predict that other animals don’t develop cancer – and you’d be wrong.

    It’s also highly unlikely that a single substance could do all that’s breathlessly claimed for it, & I do find that the use of exclamation marks tends to be a sign of woo rather than good science. The lack of any publications by T.E.Levy that you’ve pointed out is also a Bad Sign. If vit.C were really all he’s claiming for it, & he has actual evidence, you’d think he’d be keen to actually share that evidence around the scientific & medical communities, wouldn’t you?

  • Ah rats, I meant ‘however they’re defined, actually causes cancer.’

    Sorry, Siouxsie, that will teach me not to preview 🙁

  • I’m continually amazed at how people push vitamin C (but not ascorbic acid? – nasty things, acids) for almost anything.

    In reality, almost everyone in NZ gets sufficient vitamin C from their normal diet to maintain the health of their body. Any excess over that needed just gets excreted in the urine since we can’t store it. The only real effect of Vitamin C supplements, whether oral or intravenous, is the production of expensive urine.

    It takes a really concerted effort to restrict the diet sufficiently to get vitamin C deficiency, although some of the CAM diets I’ve read of come close. In over 30 years of medicine in NZ I’ve seen scurvy (vitamin C deficiency) exactly twice, once in combination with kwashiorkor. It’s rare.

    I have parents and a child who have previously been diagnosed with various types of cancer, all treated conventionally and all “cured” to the limits of investigation by everyday medical care. All of them report well meaning people advising them to take megadoses of vitamin C even now. Some of them suggest even stranger things – do bleach and kitty litter sound familiar?

    The oddest thing I see in this is that my mother laughs at the thought of vitamin C curing cancer, although she swears that it cures her colds in only a week to ten days!

  • I’m sure that Allan Smith was very happy with his family taking advice from Dr Levy as he wouldn’t be alive today otherwise. From the way I see it this Dr is all about saving lives and he educates people with the information needed to do just that. Maybe since the third leading cause of death in the USA is death by Doctor, these doctors could do with reading a book like this to help lower the statistics. Just a thought!

      • I think the study you are looking for is this one –

        JAMA. 2000 Jul 26;284(4):483-5.
        Is US health really the best in the world?
        Starfield B

        “If the higher estimates are used,the deaths due to iatrogenic causes would range from 230000 to 284000. In any case, 225000 deaths per year constitutes the third leading cause of death in the United States, after deaths from heart disease and cancer. Even if these figures are overestimated, there is a wide margin between these numbers of deaths and the next leading cause of death (cerebrovascular disease).”

  • “death by doctor” is a term bandied about by alternative medicine pundits which considers any death in a hospital as death by doctor – this ignores the fact that hospitals look after those with terminal diseases etc – talk about loading the dice.

  • What Michael said. It’s worth remembering that cases where ‘alternative’ treatments have resulted in disease becoming more serious (etc.) typically wind up in hospitals. This “death by doctor” line is used by some advocates of these ‘alternative’ treatments to ‘shift the blame’, as it were.

  • Hi Siouxsie, i,m not sure why everyone is interested in doctors being the 3rd cause of death but here is the info I read . It was published in JAMA link
    http://jama.ama-assn.org/content/284/1/93.extract also
    http://jama.ama-assn.org/content/279/15/1200.abstract , There is also mention in
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medical_harm#cite_note-rand-12 and another article in this link that has more stats.
    http://www.lef.org/magazine/mag2004/mar2004_awsi_death_01.htm. No doubt you will find something wrong with this info however at the end of the day it was first published in JAMA. Are you still not keen to read the book Primal Panacea as there is plenty of info you could learn from

  • Jim, I haven’t time to look into this, but I don’t think writing things like “No doubt you will find something wrong with this info” is helpful – it seeks to dismiss other’s views before you’ve heard them.

    One thing you will need to show to put this in proper context to draw meaning from it is if the rates (not absolute numbers) of ‘medical misadventure’ have risen and if the rise in the ranking is a reflection of that or better treatment of illnesses resulting in those illnesses falling in ranking giving the apparent illusion of rising medical misadventure if it’s only presenting by ranking order, not rates of occurrence.

  • Jim, the title of the article for your first link is “Deaths Due to Medical Errors Are Exaggerated in Institute of Medicine Report”, which doesn’t exactly give strong support to the argument you seem to be making. It gives a range of 44,000-98,000 for deaths due to medical misadventure, but even the higher figure is nowhere near “the third leading cause of death in the US” that you attribute to medical error (see the link in my precious comment).

  • In any case, it’s relevant. Just to re-state what Grant said, it’s rates that matter. Also inherent in that is the ratio of benefit to harm, “death by doctor” could be the leading cause of death but still have a net benefit if more people are helped than harmed.
    Often the benefit is what’s missing in the equation when altmed tries to libel medicine.

  • You haven’t read the book because you ONLY read peer review journal articles? LOL Well ok then Miss Nose in the Air. There are no peer review articles because big Pharma controls the medical journals. They simply leave out and refuse to publish anything unless it’s something they will make a profit from. For those like me that find your review as useless as your attitude, feel free to listen to Dr Levy online in this radio interview. It’s the link under the cover of his book (scroll down the page). http://tinyurl.com/6uc3w9e

  • @Dartanian, allow me to clarify:

    1. I think you will find I said I prefer peer reviewed journal articles.
    2. I actually read plenty of books.
    3. It’s actually Dr Nose in the Air.
    4. I wasn’t reviewing the book, merely pointing out some things about Dr Levy that I thought were relevant.
    5. Can you please provide some evidence to back up your claim that ‘big pharma’ controls the medical journals?

  • The fact that you have to ask the question confirms that you are clueless. Watch the movies ‘Forks over Knives’ and ‘Burzynski’ and ‘Food, Inc.’ and ‘Earthlings.’ Not only does big Pharma control the journals and the FDA, they put pressure on the medical schools to bounce instructors that want to find natural methods, provided by mother nature, to cure the planet. They and probably you, call people like Dr Levy ‘quacks’ when the real ‘quacks’ are pushing the poisons of chemo and radiation and the billions they make off it each year. Did you know the average Cancer patient would live longer by just doing nothing then the negative treatment your profession provides? Not to mention the over 100,000 patients that die each year from properly prescribed prescriptions.

  • I suppose if this vitamin c treatment works so well that there must be lots of people who have been saved and would testify to that effect. Is there anyone other than Allan Smith who have been saved?

  • Dartanian, have you ever read the New England Journal of Medicine??? My guess is, no, you have not. I do, almost every week. It is entirely obvious to me that, although Big Pharma has done some dastardly things, controlling the content of the NEJM is NOT one of them. The peer-reviewed journals are quite aware of Big Pharma’s shenigans & have a number of ways of dealing with possible influence, such as requiring all authors to state any association to any commercial company they may have; etc. I too would expect Dr. Levy to publish in a peer-reviewed journal if he wishes to be taken seriously. The case of Allan Smith is what is called an “anecdotal report”; it’s one interesting case. But we cannot draw conclusions for the rest of the human race about one case. Siouxsie, I agree with you.

  • Richard,

    As you’ll know, you’d want more than testimony, really, of course! I briefly looked into support for high-dose vitamin C treatment of whooping cough and severe pneumonia (as in Alan Smith‘s case); I found a lack of evidence supporting use of high-dose vitamin C for these.

    (If you want to read them, rummage around in these posts on whooping cough and Alan Smith’s case; it’s in there somewhere!)

  • It seems to me that most of you believe whatever you read (as long as it agrees with you) and only if its backed by the media and bankers that run everything for their own mega profits by keeping the truth hidden… and then when someone disagrees with your view you delete or refuse to post the comments at all. (which is why I do not expect anyone to read this except maybe the person that censors it)

  • There was a Dr. Linus Pauling. He is the only one to recieve two Noble Bell prizes as an individual and not shared. He insisted that there was a huge effect of mega doses of vitamin c. If any of you folks have one Noble prize let me know. The Quacks at Quack watch panned his research but that is to be expected. They are big pharma shills. There are also a number of Doctors that have seen the same effects. Chew on that for a while. I do not sell vitamins or suppliments.

  • Siouxsie Wiles’ article is hostile, ignorant and has fatal flaws in it. At 2007 he could not be aware of the evidence of late dramatically recorded by 60 minutes of New Zelland feturing the story of a local farmer falling ill and on life life support in a coma. The family called in to inform them he will be taken off the machine. What happened next is shocking, also inspirational and revealing of saving face nearly killed the farmer who was saved by high dose vitamin C intravenous infusison after a fight with the doctors who said there is no evidence it could work and resisted. Yet there is 80 years documented evidedence. One of the number of doctors was the late Dr. Archie Kalokarinos of Austrlia who becme a world expert on Vitamin C, as is Dr. Thomas Levy who is the foremost expert on C. The writer would do well to change his attitude and remedy the gaps in his knowldge. A good way to start is to watch:

    http://www.google.com.au/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&frm=1&source=web&cd=2&cad=rja&sqi=2&ved=0CDYQFjAB&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.3news.co.nz%2FLiving-Proof%2Ftabid%2F371%2FarticleID%2F171328%2FDefault.aspx&ei=Q-8pUb2lIenMmgW35IDIAg&usg=AFQjCNGMQlXNU0hblE6oKrSWz2udUcDAHQ&sig2=ShfSDBA_qlSxraAZNdhI7Q&bvm=bv.42768644,d.dGY

  • Hi Joseph. Please do tell me which are the fatal flaws in my post, as after rereading I cannot see them. Your comment on the other hand is full of inaccuracies (for starters, my gender and when the post written). Dr Levy may be an expert in your books, but I disagree. He doesn’t seem to open up his evidence for peer review, rather using it to sell books. Sounds more like a salesman than expert in my opinion.

  • Joseph –

    To elaborate on what Siouxsie wrote, one “warning sign” of pseudo-science is that the person (say, Thomas Levy) offers only websites and books and no peer-reviewed research papers. For example, if you look for ‘Levy T vitamin C’ in PubMed you will find there is no research papers by a T Levy on vitamin C.

    About the particular case you mention: others here at sciblogs (e.g. Peter Griffin and myself) criticised the media presentation of the 60 Minutes story you refer to. To be polite, it was a particularly one-sided piece of journalism. I’ve also briefly looked at the review literature for evidence IV vitamin C as a treatment for severe pneumonia.

    Siouxise – re “when the post written”: I suspect Joseph as read ‘March 07’ as ‘March 2007’, rather than ‘March 7th’.

  • To the author and those claiming Vit C treatment is some kind of cruel hoax, you show your ignorance and laziness. There are 100’s of studies PROVING it’s power. A quick easy way to see these studies is to go to vitamincfoundation.org. . .It’s simply amazing how people have been brainwashed that it takes drugs, and only drugs to cure disease. HOGWASH! This is plain ‘ol ignorance, because you haven’t done your homework. Not to mention your bias against either Vit C or natural supplements.

  • Chris Kavanagh – you may wish to read the second link in my previous comment. (I have focused on just one disease, but I imagine looking at other diseases will likely yield a similar lack of supporting evidence.)

  • Books like “How To Live Longer and Feel Better” by Pauling or “Ascorbate” by Steve Hickey might satisfy your criteria more, but in some ways levy’s book is better than those, because it is extremely thorough, giving an overview of a lot of esoteric information. For instance, I had been looking into the vitamin c and common cold debate, and found that reviews dismissing it were criticized because they did not take into account vitamin c pharmacokinetics, that ascorbate taken several times throughout the day is required to sustain high enough levels to help the body deal with the cold. The author of the review dismissing it was unaware of literature testing this claim. From levy I became aware of a study that showed 85% reduction when a gram was given morning, noon, and night, and then at the onset of a cold, a gram was given every hour for six hours. The source was “curing the incurable”, full of very interesting esoteric information.

    The comment you make on levy’s association with that university is a poisoning the well fallacy.

    I will be writing something up overviewing relevant studies at a later time, and posting it here.

  • I find all of your comments here interesting but not one person posting here ever mentions following or improving on Dr. Levy’s advice to take large doses of Sodium Ascorbate everyday! I have for the last 2 years and have not been sick for one minute in that time. I am 62 years old now and have taken great care of my health and fitness for the last 30 years so I look much younger. That being said I try and avoid standard medicine and have relied on natural medicine and eating right for most of this time. I place 5 grams of sodium ascorbate in my quart of pure drinking water and drink 2 or more per day so I am always flooding my body with vitamin C. This method I come to on my own as I always care a water bottle of pure water with me!
    The best way to determine if something works is to test in on your own to me!! Sometimes a little logic can prevail!!

  • Don’t discredit Vit C until you’ve tried it. I am on month 7 of over 11gms/day avg. net aa or vit c in homemade lecithin enrobed lecithin/ascorbic acid mix.

    It is like the cleaning process started with the esophagus to stomach area ( I lost my voice for 2+ weeks and watched white and red growths of evading bugs in my throat). By multi dosing during the day, I went up to a peak at 40gms /day and have as I said continued. Periodically a new zone of cleaning opens up, and along with niacin and coconut oil/oregano oil, I see and feel cleaning of the joints and other areas of hold out bio-films.

    During month 2-3, my teeth issues came and waxed and disappeared. Now its the CSF , brain and eyeballs, and residual bio-films in joints. Vitamin C works for cleaning up residual bacterial and viral contaminants. FULL STOP.

    THE DENIAL IN THE MEDICAL INDUSTRY IS ATROCIOUS

    vitamin c works

  • This article is very ignorant. I’ve been on vitamin c over a month and it has cured a bunch of symptoms my doctor couldn’t figure out. Also panic attacks which someone like the writer of this author would probably my choose brain damaging xanax instead. Levy, cathcart, and other vitamin c geniuses clearly express that if vitamin c is not working for you then your not taking enough!!

  • There is no money in curing disease. Not enough to satisfy today’s medical profession.

    Ongoing treament of sickness is much more lucrative.

    Vitamin C cures many things and therefore must be discredited.

  • So right Richard, that’s why Polio is still endemic all over the world – those iron lungs and ongoing medical costs are a gold mine. Doctors will never give that up.

  • Did Dr Klenner cure 60 out of 60 patients during the “incurable” polio epidemic of the 1950s using IVC protocol. Either this is a lie, or it’s true, or possibly somewhat exaggerated. In the later two cases 60 out of 60, or anything close to it, is as statistically significant as one can get. I am naturally curious, to ask the question, let’s assume this statistic is true, would it be enough to change the mind of the medical sceptics on vit C efficacy? If not what level of surety do they need, 100 out f 100, or possibly 1000 out of 1000.?

  • Why is everybody talking as if sodium ascorbate would be free. Please tame a look at who males it in incredibly bulk quantities and hey for profit. Wouldnt this be big pharma also sales literature?

  • Search Youtube for, Science Talk: Study Finds Vitamin C Can Kill Drug-Resistant TB By Albert Einstein College of Medicine.

  • I find it remarkable that Siouxsie Wiles claims to have looked at Thomas Levy’s website and only found his connection with what she claims to be a disreputable university viz. CUIM. This university has closed down she says and its founder was a convicted fraudster. There are no links to her sources for this.

    What his website also mentions is that early in his career he was Assistant.Professor of Medicine at Tulane Medical School between 1981-1983 and Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine at that school between 1983 -1986. Siouxsie Wiles, in her apparent haste to discredit Levy, failed to mention this.

    Tulane University is a quite respectable university I understand.

    She also claims that he didn’t publish any articles on the links between vitamin C and disease in any peer-reviewed journals. Levy did publish some articles in peer reviewed journals early in his career but admittedly not on the therapeutic application of vitamin C. This is not hard to understand. What he has to say is both too comprehensive and controversiaL to appear in any of the standard medical journals. Linus Pauling himself, double Nobel Prize winner as he was, did not choose this mode of publication for his views on this topic but put them in a more or less popular book. Siouxsie Willis is herself a prime example of the hostility in the medical establisment to these views (a hostility that was also quite obvious in the now notorious Alan Smith case).

    I would have found it a considerably more intelligent approach if Siouxsie Wiles had tried to come to grips with these views rather than taking recourse to an ad hominem attack on Levy.

    Moreover, I must say that I find her confidence in peer reviewed medical journals rather puzzling.

    As I wrote on an earlier occasion:

    Knowledge is not produced in a social vacuum. There is in every field of research a network of social interests – careers, established reputations, subsidy streams. There is an established “paradigm” of “acceptable” and “non acceptable” theory. Established reputations and the “established paradigm” are closely interwoven.

    This is all the more the case when big financial interests are at stake. As the Financial Post wrote recently in a rather different context:

    “money has a corrupting influence, not least on the peer-review process.
    Many scientific journals, including prestigious internationally acclaimed ones, have now become captured by insider groups of leading researchers in particular fields. Researchers who act as editors of journals then select referees from within a closed circle of scientists who work in the same field and share similar views.”

    The Alliance for Human Research Protection said under the heading “Medical Journals complicit in the corruption of medicine”:

    “The Truth About Drug Companies” (2004) an influential book by Marcia Angell, MD, who had been the editor of The New England Journal for two decades, laid bare the ubiquitous influence industry has on medicine.”

    Marcia Angell said inter alia :

    “It is simply no longer possible to believe much of the clinical research that is published, or to rely on the judgement of trusted physicians or authoritative medical guidelines. I take no pleasure in this conclusion, which I reached slowly and reluctantly over my two decades as an editor of The New England Journal of Medicine.”

    The Alliance for Human Search protection continued:

    “Doctors “on the take” [to borrow the title of a book (2005) by another former editor of the NEJM, Jerome Kassirer, MD] are encouraged to promote and widely prescribe clinically worthless drugs for untested uses, without regard for the serious harm caused patients.

    Although industry’s cash inducements have corrupted both individual doctors, universities, professional associations, and industry front groups that masquerade as “patient advocates,” those most responsible for the corruption of medicine are medicine’s academic leaders, prestigious medical institutions, journal editors, experts charged with formulating practice guidelines, and federal oversight agencies–in particular, the FDA, the National Institutes of Health, and the Center for Disease Control.

    When academia and government agencies became stakeholders in the business of medicine, promoting the commercial interests of manufacturers, rather than the public interest, they betrayed the public trust and their professional integrity.

    Richard Smith, MD, the former editor of the BMJ (for 25 years) has been an outspoken critic focusing in particular on the role journal editors have played in the corruption of medicine. His book, The Trouble With Medical Journals, 2004, describes journal editors’ unacknowledged significant conflicts of interest.”

    The following interview with Professor Beatrice Golomb is rather enlightening. She mentions inter alia that an FDA inquiry uncovered that in a certain drug trial 37 of 38 of the favorable reports (favorable to the drug company’s interest) were published. However of the 36 unfavorable reports 22 were not published at all and 11 of the remaining ones were published in such a fashion that the outcome appeared to be favorable. See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O6Z1vo-psWc

    This about peer reviewed journals:

    Siouxsie Wiles also wrote:

    “Renowned NZ physicist Sir Paul Callaghan, who has colon cancer, has recently gone on record as saying there was no evidence high dose intravenous vitamin C did anything for him (story covered nicely by Grant Jacobs over at Code for life).”

    I wrote the following comment on Grant Jacobs article three years ago and I am still waiting for a reply:

    “When the Mayo-Clinic purported to replicate Dr.Cameron’s experiments with vitamin C and cancer at the Scottish Vale of Leven hospital, Linus Pauling (Dr.Cameron’s intellectual ally in this) requested for this replication to be done with patients who had not undergone chemotherapy. His view was that this would make the vitamin C treatment ineffective.

    Nevertheless the Mayo-Clinikc did exactly that: try the treatment on patients who had already been submitted to chemotherapy.
    See http://drmalcolmkendrick.org/2012/08/06/how-unwelcome-research-is-discredited/

    Professor Callaghan apparently had already had six months of chemotherapy before he tried vitamin C.”

    • An excellent and thorough summation of the Vitamin C question, Arie. Sadly, Dr Wiles would appear to be yet another close minded member of the New Zealand medical profession, as is demonstrated by her hostility towards any form of treatment not approved by the ‘establishment’. Surely there is every reason for more acceptance of natural remedies by the medical profession. There is ample evidence of their efficacy available to those who care to seek it. Fortunately, my GP has a very open mind on natural treatments and is currently studying nutrition, which he informs me is a subject in respect of which he received virtually no tuition whatsoever during his conventional medical school education.

  • I’m not sure about the cancer connection, but megadoses of vitamin C cured me of a heart condition. I experienced a massive angina attack one night, which was terrifying. I did some research on chelation therapy and I tried megadoses of vitamin C. I noticed a significant improvement in just 30 days and today my angina is gone!

    I theorize it may be the acidic effect of the vitamin c (ascorbic acid) on the calcium deposits in arterial plaque. The acid dissolves the calcium, essentially reversing the hardening of the arteries. Unfortunately, I’ve found zero research on the dissolving effects of vitamin C on arterial calcium deposits. I cannot be the only one who has made this connection.

  • Murray

    One of the most challenging things about scientific research is differentiating between correlation and causation. For example after experiencing a massive angina attack (which must have been very frightening) was the only change you made taking vitamin C, or did you make other changes? If so how do you know the vitamin C is what made the difference?
    It is possible that something else you did has improved your condition or alternatively you may still be at risk.
    Have you had a doctor confirm that your health has changed and the angina has gone? It would be terrible if you thought you had improved and then suddenly had a life threatening attack.
    With regards to your suggested explanation, just because vitamin C enters your body through your digestive system (I’m guessing that your megadoses were by mouth – correct me if I’m wrong) that doesn’t mean that the vitamin C can get all the way to arterial plaque in high doses. Most excess vitamin C is flushed fairly rapidly through the body (and in excess doses it can work like a laxative).

    • Hi Michael,
      I appreciate the response. You’re absolutely correct about correlation vs causation. But I’m positive the vitamin c megadoses was the only thing I did differently. My self-treatment lasted several months. I did visit a doctor during the painful episode and they took chest x-rays but they could not find any issues. After the vitamin c reversed my condition, I didn’t have to go back to a doctor to tell me that my pain was gone. I just know that it’s gone and I feel terrific.

      The simplicity of the treatment may take some people aback. It seems almost too good to be true. Dr. Linus Pauling also observed the positive effects of ascorbate megadoses on vascular conditions. But regardless how it works is not as important as the fact that it works. This may be the miracle cure that science has been waiting for! But it may never come to the forefront because big pharma is too invested in the status quo.

  • Murray,
    I am glad you are feeling much better, no matter what the solution was. It is possible that there is a placebo effect associated with megavitamins particularly when a condition is self diagnosed.
    I would be curious to know what level of vitamin C doses you were taking?
    There is some work being done to explore the effects of vitamin C on disease at the Otago Medical School so hopefully that will shed some light on whether it has an effect

  • One of the many fairytales about Vitamin C is that if you take orally more than 200 mg whatever is more than that will be excreted in your urine. Linus Pauling tested himself after taking 10 grams (10,000m mgs) a day and found that he only excreted 15% of that:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QXiUcU3rz3s

    Hickey, Roberts & Cathcart tests point in a similar direct. I add some crucial passages of their article on the matter:

    Dynamic Flow: A New Model for Ascorbate, D.S. Hickey, Ph.D.;1 H.J. Roberts, Ph.D.; R.F. Cathcart, M.D.

    http://orthomolecular.org/library/jom/2005/pdf/2005-v20n04-p237.pdf

    “The NIH performed a series of pharmacokinetic experiments purporting to show that, with oral ascorbate, blood plasma is saturated at approximately 70 μM/L. This figure, however, is incosistent with the researchers’ own data in the same and later papers. The original papers show graphs in which the plasma level, following oral administration, is much higher than 70 μM/L. Subsequent papers suggest sustained plasma levels of at least 220 μM/L, following oral administration.20 These higher plasma levels are consistent with other reports in the literature.49,21,22”

    splitting a single large dose into several smaller ones, taken a few hours apart, increases the effective bioavailability of the large dose.
    The NIH’s assertion, that bioavailability is complete at 200 mg, implies that this is a fixed property of ascorbate. However, Cathcart’s bowel tolerance method indicates that individual bioavailability can vary by a factor of at least two orders of magnitude. This widely confirmed variation depends upon the current state of health of the subject.

    A single, oral dose increases plasma levels for a maximum of two to three hours following intake, and then decays back towards baseline levels. The average plasma level, and thus the intake into erythrocytes and typical cells, remains low after single daily doses. However, repeated doses, at an interval of less than 5 half-lives, produce a high, steady-state value in blood plasma. This also leads to a large increase in erythrocyte and other typical cell ascorbate levels. (five half-lives is approx. two and a half hours AB)

    When dynamic flow has been achieved, the mean and minimum plasma levels are relatively high: consistent levels of 220 μM can be attained. The body pool is also increased, because of increased absorption by tissues whose levels are related to those in the surrounding micro-environment. More ascorbate is available when required and the ratio of ascorbate to dehydroascorbate is high.

    Many studies have used low doses of ascorbate, assuming wrongly that, because of the low-dose hypothesis or tissue saturation, the results could be extrapolated to higher intakes. Since doses many times higher than 200 mg can be absorbed and utilized by the body, such extrapolation is unjustified. Clearly, an intake of five grams per day could have quite different effects to an intake of 100 mg. To take a specific example, it is not valid to conclude that vitamin C has no effect on heart disease, based on inconclusive or even negative results with low doses.”

  • Murray, you are probably familiar with the Pauling/Rath protocol to prevent or reverse heart disease. The essential ingredients are vitamin C (at least 6000mg in divided doses), lysine (6000 mg in divided doses), proline (2000 -3000 mg in divided doses). Other supplements can be added to these.
    Her is a link to a short article on the protocol: http://www.internetwks.com/owen/Synopsis.pdf

  • Hi Arie,
    Great post. I’m sure the Pauling/Rath cocktail works wonderfully. But all I can do is speak from experience. I took pure ascorbic acid crystals, about 16 grams per day at its height, and my angina disappeared. I didn’t take anything else. My hypertension also went back to normal levels. It wasn’t placebo because I had a lot of pain for many months before I started the treatment. After treatment I noticed a 60% improvement after 30 days. An 80% improvement after 3 months, and after 6 months I had a 99.9% improvement!

    Atherosclerotic plaque is 70-90% calcium. My theory is that the increased acidity from the ascorbic acid in my blood dissolved the calcium deposits the same way common vinegar cleans the limescale from a coffee maker or dissolves an eggshell. But I’m sure the vitamin C also had a collagen repairing effect the way Dr. Pauling claims. How could it not?

    When I discovered how simple the treatment actually is, I was astonished. Imagine the money the public would save if they followed this simple treatment or the Pauling protocol instead of taking crazy expensive statin drugs, blood pressure lowering, and beta blocker drugs. Imagine how much money could be saved from unnecessary heart surgeries.

    The Pauling treatment is not taught in medical schools. It’s obvious why this information is kept from the general public. $$$$. Thank God for the internet, where bloggers like us are spreading truth. Big pharma cannot censor websites. Not yet anyway.

  • “After treatment I noticed a 60% improvement after 30 days. An 80% improvement after 3 months, and after 6 months I had a 99.9% improvement!…

    Atherosclerotic plaque is 70-90% calcium. My theory is that the increased acidity from the ascorbic acid in my blood dissolved the calcium deposits the same way common vinegar cleans the limescale from a coffee maker or dissolves an eggshell. But I’m sure the vitamin C also had a collagen repairing effect the way Dr. Pauling claims. How could it not?”

    With such a rigorous experiment protocol, clearly detailed and widely repeated findings, and deep understanding of human body chemistry as obvious as that, how could I fail to be convinced?

    *rolls eyes*

  • Some earlier contributors on this thread spoke with pitying condescension about the scientific illiterates who imagined that vitamin C could have therapeutic value in treating cancer.

    Now guess what, the scientific illiterates have joined the American National Cancer Institute. These are quotes from their website:

    “Have any clinical trials (research studies with people) of high-dose intravenous (IV) vitamin C been conducted?

    Several studies of high-dose vitamin C in patients with cancer have been done in recent years, including the following:
    Studies of vitamin C alone
    Intravenous (IV) vitamin C was studied in patients with breast cancer who were treated with adjuvant chemotherapy and radiation therapy. The study found that patients who received IV vitamin C had better quality of life and fewer side effects than those who did not.
    A study of IV vitamin C and high doses of vitamin C taken by mouth was done in patients with cancer that could not be cured. Vitamin C was shown to be a safe and effective therapy to improve quality of life in these patients, including physical, mental, and emotional functions, symptoms of fatigue, nausea and vomiting, pain, and appetite loss.”

    but Pauling’s hunch about the incompatibility in certain cases of chemotherapy and vitamin C seems to have some basis:

    “A study in a mouse model of ovarian cancer showed that combining intravenous high-dose vitamin C with the anticancer drugs carboplatin and paclitaxel made them more effective in treating ovarian cancer.
    However, other animal studies have shown that vitamin C interferes with the anticancer action of certain drugs, including the following:
    Mouse models of human lymphoma and multiple myeloma treated with combinations of vitamin C and chemotherapy or the drug bortezomib had more tumor growth than mice treated with bortezomib alone.”

    The real breakthrough still has to come. But for me it is pretty clear that the hostile reception Pauling’s views on the therapeutic value of vitamin C received from the medical establishment is one of the scientific scandals of last century – a scandal that has by no means come to an end yet, witness also the mutterings on this thread.

    Go to youtube and you find some other jewels of this sort. There is the erstwhile editor of the New England Journal of Medicine defending his journal’s rude refusal to respond to Pauling’s letter about the Mayo Clinic’s fake replica of Dr.Cameron’s tests in the Scottish Vale of Leven hospital, by saying that there was not a “scintilla of evidence” that there was anything wrong with these Mayo tests (I beg to differ- see my critical review of them of which the website address is elsewhere on this thread). There is also the psychiatrist who states that Pauling’s views on vitamin C betrayed the “senile megalomania” of the successful scientist who thinks that he can offer fundamental insights on other subject areas. Other subject areas? Is that man off his head? Pauling happens to be acknowledged as one of the most brilliant biochemists ever.

    However the FDA will probably be the last institute that has to surrender on this point:

    As the National Cancer Institute reports:

    “The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved the use of high-dose vitamin C as a treatment for cancer or any other medical condition. “

  • “As the National Cancer Institute reports:

    “The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved the use of high-dose vitamin C as a treatment for cancer or any other medical condition. “ ”

    There is a very good reason for that – it has not been shown to be effective.

  • Well yes just ignore what the NCI writes about that – to keep up the tradition of dumb negativism on this point.
    As to the FDA always having solid scientific reasons for its approvals or disapprovals who believes in that?

    • Its a little hard to follow your logic. Are you saying I should ignore the quote you posted from the NCI? If so, what else in your posts should I ignore?

      Lets also remember, the FDA is not the only drug (or food) approval agency in the world. Is your claim that all pharmaceutical approval agencies world wide are all turning down alternative remedies because the agencies are all in the pocket of corrupt industry players?

      Back to topic – if vitamin C truly is a breakthrough cure for heart disease and cancer (how come suppressed alternative cures are never for acne, flatulence or boils?) there has been plenty of time and loads of publicly available information from which to build a good case for its effectiveness. And by good, I mean statistically sound.

      The fact that this has not occurred is telling.

      • I replied to your comment half a day ago but it hasn’t been posted yet, presumably because it contains more than one link. But don’t you worry “what is in a good barrel will not sour” as we say in Dutch.

        • @Ashton Dempsey

          You wrote:

          “Its a little hard to follow your logic. Are you saying I should ignore the quote you posted from the NCI? If so, what else in your posts should I ignore?”

          Have you got trouble linking two parts of a sentence together? And is grasping irony not among your reading skills ? It seems to me pretty clear that I was telling you: if you want to keep up the old tradition of dumb negativism on this topic then, by all means, ignore what the NCI is telling you. It is, after all, only the top body of this kind in the USA (oh dear, irony again).

          The links I earlier gave in a letter that was not published had largely to do with the same piece of research that got wide publicity:

          “Scientists at the University of Kansas Medical Center have determined that high doses of vitamin C, administered intravenously with traditional chemotherapy, helped kill cancer cells while reducing the toxic effects of chemotherapy for some cancer patients.
          By evaluating the therapy in cells, animals, and humans, the researchers found that a combination of infused vitamin C and the conventional chemotherapy drugs carboplatin and paclitaxel stopped ovarian cancer in the laboratory, and reduced chemotherapy-associated toxicity in patients with ovarian cancer.”

          You also wrote:

          “Lets also remember, the FDA is not the only drug (or food) approval agency in the world. Is your claim that all pharmaceutical approval agencies world wide are all turning down alternative remedies because the agencies are all in the pocket of corrupt industry players?”

          Who says that other national bodies equivalent to the FDA show the same suspicious zeal in suppressing vitamin C therapy? Happily not all those organs are as thoroughly corrupted as the FDA seems to be by now (see the extract of the article by the Harvard medical ethics center that I published earlier). Vitamin C therapy is certainly not forbidden in the country where I am right now (the Philippines) though in many other matters they like to ape the USA here. And I am virtually sure that it is not forbidden in Germany and Holland either. But there are clinics all over the world.

          You wrote:

          “if vitamin C truly is a breakthrough cure for heart disease and cancer … there has been plenty of time and loads of publicly available information from which to build a good case for its effectiveness. And by good, I mean statistically sound.
The fact that this has not occurred is telling.”

          Yes but “telling” in a different sense than you would like to suggest. Though there is much more than you seem to be aware of it is true that large scale research is thus far lacking. Such research would cost many millions. Who is going to pay for that – certainly not the pharmaceutical industry. The American NIH has thus far shown no enthusiasm for such a project either.

          The general assumption is that the research by the Mayo clinic in the early seventies put paid to the notion that vitamin C can be of any therapeutic value in the treatment of cancer. Those who like to claim that it is their strictly scientific disposition that determines their attitude in these matters are badly shown up here. Because that Mayo- research is pretty shoddy stuff indeed and there is a legitimate suspicion that it was deliberately shoddy. I gave in an earlier letter on this thread a link to my analysis of this.

          • Here is another bit of research that should have induced a wider effort. It was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA Vol.102 No 38 Sept.20 2005

            Pharmacologic ascorbic acid concentrations selectively kill cancer cells: Action as a pro-drug to deliver hydrogen peroxide to tissues
            Qi Chen * , †, Michael Graham Espey ‡, Murali C. Krishna ‡, James B. Mitchell ‡, Christopher P. Corpe *, Garry R. Buettner §, Emily Shacter †, and Mark Levine * , ¶
            Author Affiliations

            Communicated by J. E. Rall, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD, August 2, 2005 (received for review June 1, 2005)

            AbstractFull TextAuthors & InfoFiguresMetricsRelated ContentPDF

            Next Section
            Abstract
            Human pharmacokinetics data indicate that i.v. ascorbic acid (ascorbate) in pharmacologic concentrations could have an unanticipated role in cancer treatment. Our goals here were to test whether ascorbate killed cancer cells selectively, and if so, to determine mechanisms, using clinically relevant conditions. Cell death in 10 cancer and 4 normal cell types was measured by using 1-h exposures. Normal cells were unaffected by 20 mM ascorbate, whereas 5 cancer lines had EC50 values of <4 mM, a concentration easily achievable i.v. Human lymphoma cells were studied in detail because of their sensitivity to ascorbate (EC50 of 0.5 mM) and suitability for addressing mechanisms. Extracellular but not intracellular ascorbate mediated cell death, which occurred by apoptosis and pyknosis/necrosis. Cell death was independent of metal chelators and absolutely dependent on H2O2 formation. Cell death from H2O2 added to cells was identical to that found when H2O2 was generated by ascorbate treatment. H2O2 generation was dependent on ascorbate concentration, incubation time, and the presence of 0.5-10% serum, and displayed a linear relationship with ascorbate radical formation. Although ascorbate addition to medium generated H2O2, ascorbate addition to blood generated no detectable H2O2 and only trace detectable ascorbate radical. Taken together, these data indicate that ascorbate at concentrations achieved only by i.v. administration may be a pro-drug for formation of H2O2, and that blood can be a delivery system of the pro-drug to tissues. These findings give plausibility to i.v. ascorbic acid in cancer treatment, and have unexpected implications for treatment of infections where H2O2 may be beneficial.

  • The following article is truly frightening. It shows the influence of the pharmaceutical lobby on the FDA. It stands to reason that that lobby is not interested in FDA approval of vitamin C in therapy. This vitamin is cheap and non-patentable and could potentially replace a lot of expensive drugs. This is all so obvious that it requires willful naivety not to see it. Here are a few fragments of this article:

    Harvard University  Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics
    Journal of Law, Medicine and Ethics Vol. 14, No. 3 (2013)
    Donald W. Light (fellow Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics at Harvard University), Joel Lexchin (York University in Toronto, ON), and Jonathan J. Darrow (research fellow at Harvard Medical School).

    Institutional corruption is a normative concept of growing importance that embodies the systemic dependencies and informal practices that distort an institution’s societal mission. An extensive range of studies and lawsuits already documents strategies by which pharmaceutical companies hide, ignore, or misrepresent evidence about new drugs; distort the medical literature; and misrepresent products to prescribing physicians.1 We focus on the consequences for patients: millions of adverse  reactions. After defining institutional corruption, we focus on evidence that it lies behind the epidemic of harms and the paucity of benefits.
    It is our thesis that institutional corruption has occurred at three levels. First, through large-scale lobbying and political contributions, the pharmaceutical industry has influenced Congress to pass legislation that has compromised the mission of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Second, largely as a result of industry pressure, Congress has underfunded FDA enforcement capacities since 1906, and turning to industry-paid “user fees” since 1992 has biased funding to limit the FDA’s ability to protect the public from serious adverse reactions to drugs that have few offsetting advantages. Finally, industry has commercialized the role of physicians and undermined their position as independent, trusted advisers to patients.

    Patents, of course, can be found in all industries, but lobbyists for the pharmaceutical industry have successfully pressured Congress to provide several forms of market protection beyond patents.

    . While the 1962 amendments ushered in the modern era of testing for safety and efficacy before a drug can be approved,42 three key features of the modern drug testing system actually work for industry profits and against the development of safe drugs that improve health.

    In sum, testing and FDA criteria approval provide little or no information to clinicians on how to prescribe new drugs, a vacuum filled by company-shaped “evidence” that misleads physicians to prescribe drugs that are less safe and effective than indicated by evidence that the FDA possesses.

    . The additional $10 million of funding provided by PDUFA III for the Office of Drug Safety and the $7.5 million provided for the FDA’s advertising enforcement arm are tiny in comparison to the more than $690 million in user fees that flow to the FDA each year.62 In sum,

    Post-Marketing Surveillance
    Large and growing user fees, with a sunset expiration every five years and a threat of nonrenewal that would severely cripple the FDA, have intensified the classic principal-agent conflict.66 Marcia Angell, former editor-in-chief of the New England Journal of Medicine, observed that, “[i]n effect, the user fee act put the FDA on the payroll of the industry it regulates [and]…has drastically changed the way it operates.”67 The FDA’s obligation to serve the public is being corroded by pressures to serve the companies it regulates.

  • […] 0:44 Vitamin C proven to cure over 30 major diseases The slide is of the Natural News website. A blog that well…read the wiki entry. The “Vitamin C proven to cure over 30 major diseases” entry is based on the clinical papers of Dr Klenner which were published in between 1949 and 1970. The scientific consensus is that while vitamin C dificiency will harm a sick patient there appears to be no papers I can find that regard vitamin C as a cure for measles. However, vitamin A is used in the treatment of measles. Vitamin C isn’t toxic though so it probably won’t hurt to try, but you should probably read this first. […]

  • […] 0:44 Vitamin C proven to cure over 30 major diseases The slide is of the Natural News website. A blog that well…read the wiki entry. The “Vitamin C proven to cure over 30 major diseases” entry is based on the clinical papers of Dr Klenner which were published in between 1949 and 1970. The scientific consensus is that while vitamin C dificiency will harm a sick patient there appears to be no papers I can find that regard vitamin C as a cure for measles. However, vitamin A is used in the treatment of measles. Vitamin C isn’t toxic though so it probably won’t hurt to try, but you should probably read this first. […]

    • Interesting link Wayne. Only in vitro at this stage, but it would seem to be worth pursuing as a non-toxic form of cancer therapy. I hadn’t heard about the 2-DG used in this study either – it’s great to see more research taking place in the quest for less damaging cancer treatments.

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