FDA to Crack Down on Phony Cancer Cures?

Apparently the FDA has decided to start targeting internet businesses that have been making bogus medical claims about alt-med cancer cures. If so, it’s about time. I’m not against adults being allowed to imbibe whatever they want to believe will help cure them. I’d counsel strongly, strongly against it, but I don’t think it should be against the law. Companies, however, that prey on desperate folks like this deserve little mercy.

The letters criticized unproven claims made about these products including the ability to “destroy the enzyme on DNA responsible for cancer cells,” and the power to “neutralize” carcinogens. One product’s Web site had a testimonial claiming it had cured a patient’s skin cancer in three days, according to one of the letters.

I’m not even sure what “the enzyme on DNA responsible for cancer cells” is supposed to mean, exactly. I wouldn’t be surprised if the person who wrote it has no idea either. And that’s precisely what’s so screwed up about this entire market. While I’m sure some part of these sellers are sincerely convinced that their powders, chemicals, and rubs have some sort of cancer-fighting powers, they don’t actually know that they do. They believe. Alternative medicine is nothing more than medicine that hasn’t been vetted or tested to see if it actually works.

And in this context, that’s no better than handing someone a gun and telling them that it isn’t loaded… when they haven’t actually bothered to check. As good ole’ Abe Lincoln once said:

It is an established maxim and moral that he who makes an assertion without knowing whether it is true or false is guilty of falsehood, and the accidental truth of the assertion does not justify or excuse him.

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36 Responses to FDA to Crack Down on Phony Cancer Cures?

  1. Fleet Admiral says:

    I for one would rather have a natural cure ANYDAY over what comes out of the BS spewing mouth of big pharma. You’ve got to be kidding with their commercials, talking about developing rare forms of cancer if you take their crap drug just to cure a runny nose. Sue these bastards to hell. People have been recovering from cancer since the beginning of time on natural things. It’s just no one knows which one or many things it took to cure. Because I don’t think anyone living in 2000 BC had an ER with a radiation lab to rip apart the cells in their body. And for the record, Manuka honey among other forms DOES kill infections and viruses on the skin. It’s PROVEN in Australia hospitals.

  2. B says:

    Sad thing is, it is more profitable to treat a disease than cure it.

  3. Pravda says:

    GOOD! The FDA can start with the drug companies. We can trust their “War on Cancer” as much as we can trust the oil companies. The results are the same; you die broke!

  4. Bad says:

    Fleet Admiral: Whether a treatment is “natural” or not is both a red herring and nigh meaningless. What matters is whether various treatments have proven effectiveness against what they purport to treat. “Natural” remedies are no different than any other substance: if they do anything at all, then they have chemical and biological effects, just as any drug. The only difference with most things marketed as “natural” is that their dosing is wildly inconsistent and they are rarely regulated for quality or even to show that the claimed active ingredient is even there.

    As to your claim that people have been recovering from cancer because of natural cures, where’s your evidence of causality? Some cancers recede for a time on their own no matter what is done: how do you “know” that this or that “natural” cure, or any “natural” cure had anything to do with your claimed cases? People living in 2000 BC had no knowledge of cancer even existing, much less any model of how to prevent or treat it, much less any capacity to actually measure reliably whether any given treatment for sickness actually worked or not.

    And yes, Manuka honey, like lots and lots of substances can have topical antibaterial affects… so? Again, the issue isn’t where a substance comes from or whether some random person decides its “natural” or not. It’s if it has proven effects at particular doses for particular conditions.

    B says: Sad thing is, it is more profitable to treat a disease than cure it.

    I’m not sure that really makes sense. First of all, getting huge sum upfront for a single cure is often better than a long term treatment that will eventually go off patent. Plus, inventing a cure for cancer would be just about the best advertising coup imaginable, even if it did cost a bit of money in saved treatment costs. So I don’t really see the economic incentives being there for what you claim they’d be doing.

    Second of all, you’re basically alleging here a conspiracy of truly monumental proportions, involving virtually every cancer researcher in the world playing along, concealing the existence of an identifiable “real” cure. That seems rather… implausible.

    Pravda: GOOD! The FDA can start with the drug companies. We can trust their “War on Cancer” as much as we can trust the oil companies. The results are the same; you die broke!

    While cancer is certainly an upsetting, deadly, and often expensive disease to treat are you really claiming that, for instance, my wife is in on a giant conspiracy to cover up the fact that cancer is easy to cure, or that the best treatments we know of are really just a big scam?

    I certainly wouldn’t “trust” drug companies. But I’d trust doctors and researchers any day of the week over conspiracy theorists and people that reject evidence-based medicine.

  5. Pravda says:

    Drug companies like to make money from an existing product, even in the face of evidence that their formulation is incorrect. Patented ulcer medication made billion$ for one drug compay. They “knew” how to treat ulcers. An Australian physician later proved that a common bacteria was responsible for most ulcers! Afer much debate, the drug company finally relented, adding an antibiolic to their formulation, “just in case.”

  6. Sally says:

    I think it is good that the regulatory authorities provide consistency and transparency – if drug companies are held to standards regarding safety, efficacy, quality and promotional claims, the alternative medicine industry needs to wake and smell the roses. Hearsay is not evidence, If they truly believe their products were safe and effective they can do clinical trials with cancer centres and provide proof of their often absurd claims.

    The only consistent known cures for cancer are surgery and bone marrow transplant and neither of those works in every case.

    This topic is also continuing on my own blog too; http://oncochat.typepad.com/ overall, I think and transparency are fine things.

  7. Concerned in NYC says:

    It’s a good thing to slap the hands of those making false claim cures for cancer. Perhaps the writer of this article can enlighten us on the FDA approvals which really have been proven “safe and effective” treatment against cancer? 90% of chemotherapy patients live in a graveyard. I suspect this is due to the fact that the typical approved treatments attacks the immune system along with the cancer. So how does a person beat a metobolic disease without an immune system? Maybe the FDA should slap the hands of the CFO’s from big pharma and cancer clinics too? And slap the hands of the attending physicians which buy into their crap…for ignorance sake.

  8. Bad says:

    Pravda/PI: Sure drug companies like to make money. But you’re trying to portray lack of knowledge that affected everyone as some sort of special plot. Even in a perfectly altruistic world, people are likely to be mistaken or have incomplete knowledge about all sorts of things. In the case of ulcers, it took the discovery you were talking about to know that we could do better than the previous treatments, which basically quelled symptoms without fixing the problem. That is to say: it took new evidence.

    And how come the drug companies weren’t able to hush up the discovery like they apparently have been with alleged cures for cancer anyway?

    And please, stick to using one name. It gets confusing!

  9. Bad says:

    Concerned in NYC Says: 90% of chemotherapy patients live in a graveyard.

    Well, actually, 100% of chemotherapy patients will end up in a graveyard at some point, along with the rest of us. Don’t you think that’s a little misleading? All the evidence is that chemo, as a properly used treatment, extends people’s lives. No, it often cannot eradicate cancer and bring about remission. But it can temporarily knock back what would otherwise be quickly fatal incursions.

    Also, people generally get chemo when they, well, you know, metastatic cancer. Which is a) pretty deadly stuff and b) often pretty advanced by the time its caught.

    And the immune system can rarely beat metastatic cancers on its own in any case, so what’s your point?

    Maybe the FDA should slap the hands of the CFO’s from big pharma and cancer clinics too?

    On what basis?

    And slap the hands of the attending physicians which buy into their crap…for ignorance sake.

    Again, on what basis? Why should I believe you are the informed one over oncologists, who seem about as far from ignorant and uncaring as anyone I know when it comes to treating cancer?

  10. Bad says:

    Concerned in NYC Says: 90% of chemotherapy patients live in a graveyard.

    Well, actually, 100% of chemotherapy patients will end up in a graveyard at some point, along with the rest of us. Don’t you think that’s a little misleading? All the evidence is that chemo, as a properly used treatment, extends people’s lives. No, it often cannot eradicate cancer and bring about remission. But it can temporarily knock back what would otherwise be quickly fatal incursions.

    Also, people generally get chemo when they, well, you know, metastatic cancer. Which is a) pretty deadly stuff and b) often pretty advanced by the time its caught.

    And the immune system can rarely beat metastatic cancers on its own in any case, so what’s your point?

    Maybe the FDA should slap the hands of the CFO’s from big pharma and cancer clinics too?

    On what basis?

    And slap the hands of the attending physicians which buy into their crap…for ignorance sake.

    Again, on what basis? Why should I believe you are the informed one over oncologists, who seem about as far from ignorant and uncaring as anyone I know when it comes to treating cancer?

  11. D. D. says:

    Many reputable researchers and doctors are of the opinion that the etiology of cancer is fungal related, Diet, antifungals, beta glucan, proteolytic enzymes, probiotics, vitamins, minerals, these and other things can go far in fighting the ravages of cancer. It is absurd that the only treatments doctors are allowed by law to offer cancer patients are chemo, radiation, and surgery, when two out of three are capable of causing the very disease they are supposed to fight. By the way, Dr. Lorraine Day, a main stream, conventional doctor figured out how to cure herself without chemo and radiation. I wouldn’t trust the FDA if my life depended on it, and as for Big Pharma, it all boils down to money.

  12. Bad says:

    Many reputable researchers and doctors…

    In science, it doesn’t matter much if someone thinks you are reputable or not. What matters is if you have good evidence for your theory or not. All the treatments you name either need to provide some evidence of their efficacy in the standard way, or not get billed as “cancer cures.”

    It is absurd that the only treatments doctors are allowed by law to offer cancer patients are chemo, radiation, and surgery, when two out of three are capable of causing the very disease they are supposed to fight.

    Doctors offer more treatments than just those. But what those 3 happen to have in common is that they have proven efficacy in improving survival rates and quality of life. And that, ideally, is what medical treatments require to become part of the standard of care.

    By the way, Dr. Lorraine Day, a main stream, conventional doctor figured out how to cure herself without chemo and radiation.

    Day has refused to supply evidence that what she “cured” was even cancer in the first place, and her story is inconsistent. I don’t think she’s a reliable source on alternative cancer treatment, especially not given that even if her cancer had recurred and then gone back into remission, this would be only a single case, with no evidence that any particular intervention she tried actually was responsible.

  13. D. D. says:

    Dr. Lorraine Day was diagnosed with cancer. Who are you to second guess her diagnosis? She was urged over and over to submit herself to chemo and radiation. She probably survives and thrives because she refused. More power to her!
    I never used the word “cure” when referring to diet, antifungals, beta glucan and the rest. What I did say is that they go a long way to fighting the ravages of cancer. And may I add, without the nasty side effects of chemo and radiation.
    And, yes, the medical community and the FDA are arrogant to assume that their way is the only way.
    And by the way, there does exist good evidence to support what I have said. It isn’t just “my theory”. Why don’t you google search “fungus / cancer and see what you find.

  14. Bad says:

    Dr. Lorraine Day was diagnosed with cancer. Who are you to second guess her diagnosis?

    It doesn’t matter who I am. What matters is the evidence. She needs to provide evidence of her claims if she wants to establish that something noteworthy happened, even if it still would be just a single case anecdote.

    As the site I linked to notes, there are many obvious inconsistencies in her story, including a lot of stuff that just plain doesn’t make any sense. She needs to address these issues if she wants anyone to take her account seriously. She hasn’t.

    What I did say is that they go a long way to fighting the ravages of cancer.

    How do you know this though? How does Day know it given the lack of any of the tests needed to diagnose the various things she claims? Even under the best case scenario in which we take her account at face value, all we have here is a case in which a tumor progressed and then regressed. We don’t know why. It could have had nothing at all to do with anything she did (and her “testing” of various things by trying them one after the other and subjectively judging if they were “working” makes no sense at all as an objective or reliable protocol). For all she or anyone knows, the cancer may not have even been metastatic, but could have been a fluid blockage.

    And, yes, the medical community and the FDA are arrogant to assume that their way is the only way.

    Well, their “way” is to demand actual evidence, controlled trials that account for confounding effects, and so forth. That’s a heck of a lot better than simply making a bunch of strange claims that you provide very inconsistent documentation about… for a single case.

    And this is no moot issue either. The link I provided notes two cases this doctor is familiar with in which taking Day’s advice severely hurt patients quality of life and even may have hastened their deaths.

  15. D. D. says:

    You assumed that my last e mail concerned only Dr. Day. Not so. only the first paragraph. I happen to believe her. OK!
    There is plenty of evidence to support the “fungal etiology” of cancer. One man in particular has researched the subject for about 37 years. In fact, he has concluded that most diseases are fungal related. His “evidence” comes from personal observations, old medical texts, articles, medical studies, testimonials, you name it. Before you start tearing him apart, be advised, he always tells his viewers to check with their doctors first before making any changes. Would you like to know his name?
    By the way, Dr. Tulio Simoncini is an oncologist in Rome, Italy. He has developed a teqnique targeting cancer cells using baking soda. He says that it works. The last I heard, he had helped 18 patients. The Italian government harrasses him about it. IDIOTS! At least he is safe there from the FDA crack down.

  16. Bad says:

    There is plenty of evidence to support the “fungal etiology” of cancer

    Where? I only find links to naturopathy sites making more bold claims.

    There is plenty of evidence to support the “fungal etiology” of cancer. One man in particular has researched the subject for about 37 years. In fact, he has concluded that most diseases are fungal related. His “evidence” comes from personal observations, old medical texts, articles, medical studies, testimonials, you name it.

    This has virtually every warning sign of “crackpot.”

    -single guy laboring alone? Not how scientific research works.
    -believes that all or even most diseases track back to a single cause that he can treat with a single kind of treatment?
    -claimed evidence is a huge list of virtually everything but actual clinical trials and peer reviewed journal articles

    By the way, Dr. Tulio Simoncini is an oncologist in Rome, Italy. He has developed a teqnique targeting cancer cells using baking soda. He says that it works. The last I heard, he had helped 18 patients.

    It’s possible to spot kill any cell, including cancer cells, with any sort of caustic substance. But that’s basically just a form of extremely ineffective targeted chemotherapy, which has little hope of wiping out metastatic cancers, where the real danger are the cells constantly spreading to new parts of the body.

  17. D. D. says:

    “Where”, you ask is the evidence. I googled “fungus link / cancer” and, gee, golly whiz, there were 247,000 hits.
    There is a mountain of scientific evidence. Read them for yourself. Some of it is

  18. D. D. says:

    Sorry about that. My cat accidently stepped on the mouse and clicked on “submit comment”. I’ll write more later.

  19. Bad says:

    I’m not aware of any standard of scientific evidence by which the number of mentions of a connection on the internet counted as evidence. All of the hits that come up are from alt-med sites touting miracle cures, not scientific journals or discussions. That’s just not how medicine is practiced with any integrity. While I’m certainly open to the possibility that fungal infections can trigger a type of cancer, all the credible medical research suggests that this is not a common cause of cancer, left alone a productive means of treating most or all cancers.

  20. Pat says:

    Actually, Bad, despite what you say, number of google hits can sometimes be a useful and efficient way to resolve a controversial issue. For example:

    Evidence that “pooping is better than sex” : 3 google hits

    Evidence that “sex is better than pooping”: 0 google hits

    I think that science is pretty clear on this one.

  21. D. D. says:

    All right, Bad, it’s clear to me that you have no interest in anything I have to say. You remind me of my big brother, Ken, who is ready with a sure fire answer to all of my arguments. It breaks my heart, because he suffers from cancer, and his VA doctors have done all they can, for him and to him. Don’t get me started, I’m mad as a wet hen.
    Since my words have zero impact, may I suggest that you go to this WEB site, knowthecause.com. Click on the video section and listen to Doug Kaufmann talk about himself, his Naval service in Vietnam, his working with doctors in clinics and hospitals, and the experience that changed his life and his thinking.
    I challenge you to do this, it will take a half hour of your time.
    To Poop and Sex Pat, your cynical attitude stinks. I double dog dare you to do the same.

  22. Bad says:

    You remind me of my big brother, Ken, who is ready with a sure fire answer to all of my arguments.

    Not that Ken is necessarily right, but I don’t see how simply having answers to claims can be taken as a sign of a) not listening or b) being wrong.

    I watched the video and looked at the site. Again, I see a lot of claims, and not a lot of actual, clinical evidence. As he himself says, he has no real relevant credentials. Which does not necessarily make it impossible for him to know what he’s talking about, but it raises the bar of my skepticism by a heck of a lot.

    If you think there is some truly compelling evidence that he has, you’re welcome to explain it. I’m not seeing anything much past a couple of weak correlations and a lack of hard evidence.

  23. Pat says:

    My cynical attitude? Be fair. You’re asserting that mainstream medicine and the FDA are a bunch of idiots who are too arrogant and/or greedy to see that they’ve got the whole cause of cancer all wrong, and that they require treatments to pass through clinical trials not out of some altruistic desire to find the causes of disease and what works effectively, but rather to kill competition and squash new ideas that don’t fit with their worldview. All I did was make fun of you for implying that number of google hits correlates with truth. I think your position is much more cynical.

  24. D. D. says:

    Pat, I am sorry if I misjudged you.
    In defense of Doug Kaufmann: he has studied the relationship of fungus and mold and mycotoxins to human health for 37 years. He avidly reads old medical texts, medical journals, clinical trials, laboratory research, physicians hand books, books written by doctors and nutritionists and pharmacists, magazine articles, anything to do with health. He consults with doctors, nutritionsists, pharmacists, microbiologists, professionals in the health food and vitamin industries, and on and on. He has witnessed people improving using his methods, i.e., diet, antifungals, probiotics, beta glucan, proteolytic enzymes, supplements, etc. All I can do is lay out the facts. It’s your perogative to believe it or not.

  25. ellie says:

    Don’t believe anything the FDA tells you! They are owned by the drug companies and most research is done by the drug industry themselves, be it at their own labs or scientists they own. They control the medical schools and what is taught there, so you can say the doctors are told what works or not. The system is so corrupt that you want to go after alternative cures or treatments that just may work. Who will decide what alternative therapies to go after, the FDA who wants to keep the profits comin in for drug companies? This whole thing is BS. There are many dead people who used conventional medicines. The FDA has a history of corruption, their leaders coming from drug industries. As far as research scientists- they get millions to “so call “research cancer. It’s a gravy train for them. When the Polio vaccine was found, Easter Seal lost much donatons. The crooked medical profession (AMA- FDA) doesn’t want cures found. Cancer drugs bring in too much $$$$$. You may fool a few of these people reading this, but too many of us know the BS government puts out!!!

  26. Bad says:

    Let’s for a second pretend that your vast conspiracy theory, which would require the participation of nearly every government and doctor on the planet, was true. Even so, why should that make anyone more willing to take cancer cures that have no reliable evidence backing their efficacy either? The fact that you don’t trust the FDA shouldn’t make you trust a late-night infomercial huckster selling a book of miracle cures. It should make you skeptical of everyone.

    Of course, what you’re saying isn’t really true, thankfully.

    While I wouldn’t encourage anyone to trust the FDA by itself, or defend it as flawless, it generally performs its function, and is by and large checked by countless mainstream doctors, researchers, and watchdog groups around the country who can and do keep it in line.

    And by “mainstream” I mean people that work with evidence-based methodologies with a skeptical bent.

    And yes, there are many dead people who used conventional medicine: including those who were given the wrong medicine, or given medicines that later proved to be harmful. Doctors and scientists are not omniscient, and they work the best they can with the evidence they have. They make mistakes. But they make mistakes in the context of real and productive medical practice. And most of the dead people are people whose length and quality of life was, while they lived, improved by modern medicine… medicine which can only do so much.

    Yet again: the limitations of modern and mainstream medicine do not magically endorse alternative methods for which there is little evidence of efficacy, or even solid evidence against it.

  27. D. D. says:

    “…..alternative methods for which there is little evidence of efficacy…..”, you say?
    Many herbs, spices, juices and plants have been used as medicine for thousands of years. Do you think that God put people on this planet with no earthly means of relieving pain and curing diseases? People who lived back then must have done much experimentation to discover what worked best for what ailment.

    For the FDA to shove aside naturals as bogus, without properly testing them is akin to the Hitler regime’s policy of burning books, regardless of the contents.

    I see the FDA as an arrogant dictatorial tyrant, forcing it’s subjects to submit to the standards of care for cancer that they mandate, i.e., chemo, radiation and surgery. Surgery, I may consider, if I am allowed to reject poisoning and burning.

    The fact that I do not trust the FDA does not make me “trust a late night infomercial huckster selling a book of miracle cures.”

    In a nutshell, there has to be a better way to tackle cancer, and I believe that there is, no doubt in my mind.
    .

  28. Bad says:

    The fact that people used various substances for thousands of years is neither here nor there: for thousands of years, people did not have modern science or testing protocols and instead relied on anecdote and correlation: without any understanding of how these things could lead to false theories of cure and causation.

    As for God, I don’t have any reason to believe that there was a designer placing particular substances around to help deal with disease (which would be particularly silly, since this designer would be the one who designed the diseases in the first place).

    The fact is, there is no alternative medicine. There is only medicine tested with good protocols, and substances that have no evidence either way, or sometimes even evidence against their efficacy (many supposedly harmless herbal treatments are in fact even highly dangerous or toxics to people with certain condititions). If you don’t believe that the FDA does a good enough job at testing things, then you are welcome to provide other evidence of your own to support certain treatments or demonstrate the dangers of others. But mere allegations of conspiracy just don’t cut it against actual hard data from multiple sources and angles.

  29. D. D. says:

    The “designer” created diseases? I have a hard time swallowing that one. According to the Christian point of view, He created a perfect world. It was man who sinned and brought maladies down upon himself. Perhaps it was the devil himself who “designed” diseases”, who knows?

    And really, who cares if early man had no “modern science or testing protocols”. The important thing was how various treatments affected various diseases or injuries. If a treatment produced one or more obvious benefit(s), why would they worry about conducting a double blind study. If it worked, it worked, simple as that. So what if people did not understand the how and why’s, it was the results that mattered. It was the knowledge that was gained that was passed down to the generations that followed.

    I think that natural meds should be the norm, and all that other stuff should be called “alternative”. In other words, use pharmaceuticals only when absolutely necessary.

  30. Bad says:

    An all powerful god cannot possibly not be directly or indirectly responsible for all specific diseases. “Sin” does not design binding sites in malaria specific to human cells. “Sin” does not create specific genetic disorders that are basic to the human genetic structure. And you can’t very well say “who knows” after you got through claiming that God “must have” created substances to address diseases. Why in a fallen world would God do that but not simply reduce the severity of the disease to whatever level he thought appropriate in the first place? If “who knows” then its all baseless and speculative: including your idea that natural cures must have been created.

    And no, it isn’t as simple as thinking that a treatment worked. All sorts of confounding affects can confuse ideas about whether treatments really did anything or not. Self-limiting conditions will always be cured by whatever treatment you use, for instance, but this doesn’t make the treatment the cause. Selection bias can be used to excuse failures, and so on. Even WITH great controls and study designs, people still make mistakes: causality is very hard to nail down and takes great thought and effort to ensure that you are not being misled.

    That’s not to say that it’s impossible for people to have correctly realized particularly obvious beneficial effects when they saw them. And indeed, many of these are already part of mainstream medicine precisely because they were bourne out by modern medical science. But that still doesn’t mean that mere tradition and habit are themselves evidence of efficacy: people are as often as not simply wrong, and countless traditional remedies have turned out to be baseless or even harmful. That’s just a fact. It still all comes down to whether you can show actual evidence that the treatment works. Tradition is ultimately irrelevant.

    All treatments should be used based on evidence-based efficacy, regardless of whether they are “natural” or not (not that that distinction really even means anything)

  31. D. D. says:

    “……cannot possibly not be directly or indirectly responsible for all specific diseases.”

    Your saying that God is responsible for all specific diseases, is that right?

    Well, I’m not so sure about that. It seems to me that man (and woman) were given free will, and freely chose to give in to temptation by the devil and to transgress against God. It was because of their own folly that diseases entered the world, not by God’s design but through Satan’s new found power.

    Assuming that God is compassionate and loves his children, wouldn’t it follow that he create substances with soothing or healing powers for them to discover?

    “All sorts of confounding effects can confuse ideas about whether treatments really did anything or not.”

    I believe I see your point. Early man has a headache. He brews an herbal tea and drinks it down. Conjures a poultice, puts it in a fig leaf and wraps it on his forehead. Then he chews on a dandelion leaf. The headache disappears. Why? Was it the tea, the poultice, the leaf, or did it vanish on it’s own. Is that what you mean?

    I think if one of those treatments, say, the tea, works ninety percent of the time over a period of years to alleve headaches, it may be safe to conclude that it is an effective medicine.

    “……many of these {obvious beneficial effects} are already part of mainstream medicine precisely because they were bourne out by modern medical science.”

    Many obvious beneficial effects are part of natural medicine precisely because they were bourne out by trial and error for thousands of years.

    “….people are as often as not simply wrong, {very true} and coutless traditional remedies have turned out to be baseless or even harmful.” {no argument there}

    On the other hand, countless traditional remedies have stood the test of time and they deserve a place in modern medicine.

    “All treatments shoud be based on evidence-based dfficacy, regardless of whether they are natural or not, {no doubt about that}

    “(not that that distinction really even means anything)”.

    No, I can’t go along with that. If I have the choice of taking something natural that has zero to a hand full of potential side effects versus a pharmaceutical drug that may produce a list of side effects as long as my arm, I’d need to be mighty desparate to take the latter. There are times that they are necessary, that is true, but I’d rather not take them if I don’t need to.

  32. Bad says:

    I’m not saying that God is or isn’t, because I don’t believe in God. but if an all powerful creator God exists, then by definition, anything and everything would come down to its decision. Even if free will were some sort of out from that (and it isn’t), that still doesn’t explain disease, which is not merely degredation, but often specific organisms tailored to causing harm. Saying that Satan had power at all makes even less sense: all powerful beings wouldn’t have any reason to allow such a lesser being to do anything. On top of that, according to you God both allows Satan to design malaria, but then seeds the earth with quinine? Why not just get rid of malaria in the first place? What sort of bizarre game is that?

    And what I am saying is that a man has a headache, and it goes away. In the meantime, he tries all these remedies. None of them actually do anything, but he doesn’t know anything about headaches. So he associates the improvement with the remedy. And when he tries it other times and it doesn’t work, he makes excuses for it. This happens all the time: it’s well documented.

    Merely using something for thousands of years does not “bear it out.” There are countless ways to fool oneself that something is working, and you will never really know until you test it in a controlled fashion. Time is not a test. Tests, real tests with real evidence, are test. Lasting in time can be because of countless other things than actual efficacy.

    “Natural” cures can have just as many side effects as anything else: the people peddling them just aren’t obligated to tell you about them because they exploit a loophole in the labeling laws. Other times, “natural” cures don’t have side effects because they have almost no effects at all. Real treatments, real effects on the body, have side effects. That’s because the body is a complex system of interdependent processes and chemical levels. If something has no side effects, it’s quite likely that it’s having very little effect on the body period. Even things like food and water have side effects or even dangers.

  33. D. D. says:

    If the tea remedy works effectively on man’s headache ninety percent of the time for thousands of years, why shouldn’t that lead him to presume he has discovered a cure? Perhaps the ten percent failure is due to something more serious, like, for instance, a tumor. In that case, he can’t expect the brew to quell his pain. It wouldn’t make any sense.

    It follows then, that the tea deserves classification as an effective headache remedy. As you stated, ” All treatments should be based on evidence based efficacy.” Positive results time after time rates strong evidence in my book.

    “…..people peddling them (natural cures) just aren’t obligated to tell you about them (side effects) because they exploit a loophole in the labeling laws.”

    You are no doubt right about that. That is why I am, and everybody should be, very careful, choosing to buy naturals from only ethical companies. I mostly rely on the recommendations of people I choose to trust to steer me clear of shiesters.

    Getting back to the subject at hand, cancer, try this on for size:

    People are born with yeast in their gastro-intestinal tract, or gut. They also possess beneficial bacteria, aka, flora. The flora causes the yeast to make certain B vitimans and lines the gut, forming a proctective berrier. They perform many necessary functions to numerous and time consuming to mention here.

    Man, or woman, takes an antibiotic, or experiences stress, or ingests a medication, or whatever the case may be, and the flora is compromised, wiped out or severely reduced in number.

    Yeast, possessing a Jeckyl and Hyde personality, and being opportunistic, exploits the situation. It begins to multiply out of control, ejecting the surviving flora from it’s “parking spaces” and systematically overruns the gut.

    It begins to develop hooks with which it eventually pokes holes in the gut (leaky gut syndrom). Then yeast hitches a ride on the bloodstream which distributes it throughout the body.

    It invades a human DNA cell, creating a hybrid. Could this be what cancer really is? Plenty of researchers and doctors in this country believe this is the case.

    I will stop here and give you tme to ponder this scenario.

  34. Bad says:

    Headaches are a great example: they are generally things that go away with or without treatment. It’s thus very easy for human beings, who by nature make causal associations based on mere correlation almost instinctively, to thus associate relief with whatever remedy they try subsequent to the relief. And once the association is made, they’ll make all sorts of excuses for why it doesn’t work this or that time, even to the point of absurdity. This is, again, a very well demonstrated psychological effect.

    In the end, the only way to figure out if the treatment really works is to test it and see: and test it not just from self-reporting, but from actual trials with real controls for error and misperception. There’s litterally a long list of ways in which people can fool themselves when trying to make causal associations (regression to the mean, self-selection, etc.) All of those have to be ruled out. Any of them could be at play in your claims of “positive results time after time.”

    As for your scenario: sure, and the one true cause of cancer could be aliens. Science and medicine aren’t about what one “believes” its about what we can show to be true, with evidence. Anyone can think up a speculative scenario. In any case, cancer isn’t a single disease: there are lots and lots of different cancers, many of which with very different underlying structures and behavior. The idea that there is some single cause for all of them with a simple cure is, frankly, highly unlikely.

    And I hope what you are talking about isn’t this stuff, because it appears to be a real mess, scientifically.

  35. D. D. says:

    One tiny correction, I said the yeast invades the DNA. I meant to say it is the toxins produced by the yeast (mycotoxins) that compromise human DNA.

    Now, Dr. Simoncini, an oncologist in Rome, Italy, flat out states that cancer is yeast.

    Which scenerio is correct, if either, is yet to be determined. However, what I said about flora and yeast in the gut is well documented and absolutely correct.

    Also, I never said “the one true cause of cancer” or anything like it.

    But I have a question for you. Why do cancer cells shrink or disappear when subjected to antifungals, and a diet designed to starve the cancer cells, a good probiotic and some other key supplements?

    If cancer is not a fungal generated disease, why does this happen?

  36. I found this site from searching on Bing and just wanted to say thanks for this interesting post on Emetophobia. My daughter actually suffers with this condition and this might help them out. Thank you again!

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