To: IAHF List
Subject: To The Editor re "Vitamin Use May Increase Death Rates of Users"
Date: 1 Oct 2004 22:04:02 -0000
IAHF Webmaster: Breaking News, Whats New, What to Do, Codex, EU FSD, Trans Tasman HARM-onization, All Countries
IAHF List: An IAHF subscriber in Germany who has chemical sensitivities and who will die if she loses her access to healing nutrients called this UK INDEPENDENT newspaper article called "Vitamin Use May Increase Death Rate of Users" to my attention today. [see it below my comments along with my letter to the editor complaining about it.]
Today I have seen very similar muck raking yellow journalism articles about the outrageously biased LANCET study (see below) in newspapers all over the world.
In my complaint to the Editor I reference Patrick Holford's excellent scientific rebuttal to the LANCET article (see Holford's hard hitting review below).
I urge you to send your OWN letter to the editor of the INDEPENDENT at email@example.com to join me in complaining about this irresponsible, unbalanced "journalism."
Let this be a WAKE UP call to those vitamin consumers world wide who have their heads in the sand regarding the CODEX International Threat to Health Freedom. We're up against a Eugenics Agenda due to PEAK OIL being upon us http://www.peakoil.org/ http://www.lifeaftertheoilcrash.net/ The rush to force biometric identifiers on us http://edition.cnn.com/2004/US/10/01/fingerprinting.allies.ap/index.html is part of an emerging global police state in which the Codex Alimentarius Commission is a key part of using FOOD CONTROL for PEOPLE CONTROL.
PLEASE HELP IAHF TO SPUR MORE WIDESPREAD AWARENESS- Urge more people to sign onto http://www.iahf.com to receive this newsletter, and urge them to DOWNLOAD the emergency ANTI CODEX Materials from the FLASHING BANNER on the front page of the site and to help get them around to every health food store, vitamin company, and consumer you possibly can.
THANK YOU to those of you who have sent donations!! We've got the RT plane ticket paid for for one of the KEY people we need to send to the Codex meeting in Bonn on November 1 as part of our MONKEYWRENCHING STRATEGY, and ADDITIONAL HELP is still BADLY NEEDED to get our OTHER key person across the pond for this meeting.
Candace and I will be part of an EMERGENCY anti CODEX meeting at the upcoming ACAM meeting in San Diego in November, and we are succeeding in waking a lot more people up but need your HELP!! The IAHF list should be growing by over 100 new people per day, but that won't happen unless all of you work a LOT harder than you have been to SPREADING THE WORD that we're under ATTACK!!
Hopefully, the muckraking yellow journalism below from the UK's Independent will HELP you to alert people, especially when you realize that versions of Laurance's article appeared today in Newspapers WORLD WIDE.... PLEASE!! Donate to IAHF 556 Boundary Bay Rd. Point Roberts, WA 98281 USA or via paypal at http://www.iahf.com and write your OWN letter to the editor of the Independent and OTHER newspapers about this biased LANCET Report:
Subject: To the Editor- re "Vitamin Use May Increase Death Rates of Users"
To the Editor:
The Lancet article referenced by health editor Jeremy Laurance in his piece "Vitamin Use May Increase Death Rate of Users" http://news.independent.co.uk/uk/health_medical/story.jsp?story=567650 is one of the most biased supposedly "scientific" articles I've ever seen.
Enclosed is Patrick Holford's interpretation which I'm strongly inclined to agree with especially because my LIFE was saved via orthomolecular medicine, a suppressed alternative treatment mode involving the use of dietary supplements after mainstream medicine almost killed me over 20 years ago. The well meaning physicians who nearly killed me had a near total ignorance of clinical nutrition because of the influence pharmaceutical companies wield over medical schools.
Increasingly we're seeing outrageously biased, supposedly "scientific" articles against dietary supplements in mainstream medical journals because their publishing costs are underwritten by full page glossy advertisements for patented pharmaceutical drugs which cost millions to put through the FDA's approval process, and the last thing these drug companies want is COMPETITION from non patentable natural substances which help people stay healthy, and AWAY from hospitals and doctors who have a "business with disease." I
n addition to Holford's analysis of the Lancet article in question I'd like to refer Mr.Laurance and your readers to Gary Null, PhDs well researched article DEATH BY MEDICINE which puts things a lot more in perspective http://www.garynull.com/Article.aspx?Article=/documents/iatrogenic/deathbymedicine/deathbymedicine1.htm
Null documents from data gathered in peer review medical journals that 783,936 iatrogenic drug deaths occurred in America last year making the use of prescription drugs the leading cause of death in America today with the equivalent of a 747 full of people crashing and burning from toxic drug reactions every day of the year.
For some perspective on the relative dangers posed by prescription drugs compared with dietary supplements see this analysis: http://www.laleva.cc/petizione/english/ronlaw_eng.html
Vitamin consumers all over Britain should support the Alliance for Natural Health's efforts to overturn the illegal EU Food Supplement Directive. ANH won a referral from the High Court in London to challenge the Directive, and have filed to appear before the ECJ which will hear their case as soon as possible http://www.alliance-natural-health.org See my article "Europe Threatening to Ban Dietary Supplements" http://www.lef.org/magazine/mag2003/2003_preprint_eu_01.htm
John C. Hammell, President
International Advocates for Health Freedom
556 Boundary Bay Rd.
Point Roberts, WA 98281 USA
Lancet Antioxidant Cancer Trial Shows BENEFIT, Not Harm
A study, published in the Lancet currently, on antioxidants and gastrointestinal cancer, is being claimed to indicate that antioxidants don’t reduce risk, and may even increase cancer risk. However, experts in nutrition and cancer say the study shows nothing of the sort.
In my opinion this is one of the most biased and unsubstantiated reports on antioxidants I’ve ever read. If you look at the actual results of this supposed comprehensive analysis of research you will see that the only really significant finding in a considerable reduction in gastrointestinal cancer risk with selenium supplementation. Overall, it shows that antioxidant supplements reduce the risk of oesophageal cancer, have little effect on pancreatic or oesophageal cancer, and slightly increase the risk of gastric cancer. Overall, the clear trend is towards protection, not harm. I believe this is an underestimation of the prevention power of antioxidants because this claimed comprehensive analysis of research excludes some very well designed positive studies, such as a trial of 864 people with a history of colorectal adenomas, by the National Cancer Institute (1). The participants were given either 25mg of betacarotene and/or both 100mg of vitamin C and 400mg of vitamin E, versus placebo. While there was approximately a halving of recurrence of colorectal adenomas in those who took either the betacarotene or vitamin C and E or both, there was a modest increase in cancer recurrence among those who only took betacarotene supplements and both smoked and drank alcohol every day. Why was this trial excluded? Perhaps it didn’t give the results the researchers wanted.
The final table in the Lancet study, which is the only one showing a small negative overall effect on mortality (the difference between 1 in 14 cancer patients on antioxidants, versus 1 in 15 cancer patients), was arrived at by removing any positive studies on the grounds of ‘low methodological quality’, leaving only 7 studies out of the original 167 studies! Of these studies, one is quoted as showing a massive increased risk. Without this study there is no such effect. However, this study actual showed the exact opposite. The study in question, Correa et al (2), published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, gave people with gastric cancer either beta-carotene, vitamin C or anti-Helicobacter Pylori treatment (gastric cancer is increasingly being thought to be initiated by H.Pylori infection, not antioxidant deficiency). All three interventions produced highly significantly improvements, causing substantial regression of gastric cancer. The authors conclude “dietary supplementation with antioxidant micronutrients may interfere with the precancerous process, mostly by increasing the rate of regression of cancer precursor lesions, and may be an effective strategy to prevent gastric carcinoma.” (see abstract below).
So, how could this study bias the results towards increased mortality? For the simple reason that six people out of 368 treated with antioxidants died, many of whom were smokers, compared to none out of 117 people treated with anti- H.Pylori treatment died! The most logical explanation for this finding is that, by virtue of participating in this trial, these patients were excluded from taking anti- H.Pylori treatment, which is highly recommended for gastric cancer. It is highly unlikely that the antioxidants had anything to do with it. The authors of this study make no reference to the possibility of antioxidants increasing mortality risk, instead concluding that both beta-carotene and vitamin C reduce risk.
A review of the Lancet study (also published in the Lancet) by David Forman and Douglas Altman of the Centre for Epidemiology and Biostatistics says “The mortality analysis in this review does not offer convincing proof of hazard.” In my opinion this is the most atrocious piece of biased number crunching, and I’m surprised that the Lancet published it. The funding source for this trial should be seriously investigated, just to check it is not as biased as the rhetoric. Drug companies have a lot to gain by discrediting nutritional treatments and I have no doubt that there is an orchestrated campaign under way to do just this. I certainly won’t be stopping my daily antioxidant supplement, although I wouldn’t advise heavy smokers to supplement beta-carotene on its own. I would advise people wanting to reduce their cancer risk to supplement 50 to 150mcg of selenium, together with other antioxidant nutrients.”
1 Baron, J et al., ‘Neoplastic and antineoplastic effects of beta-carotene on volorectal adenoma’, J Natl Cancer Inst. 95, 10, pp. 717–22 (2003).
2 Correa P et al., ‘Chemoprevention of gastric dysplasia:randomised trial of antioxidant supplements and anti-helicobacter pylori therapapy’, J Natl Cancer Inst. 2000 Dec 6;92(23):1881-8.
ABSTRACT OF THE CRITICAL STUDY
J Natl Cancer Inst. 2000 Dec 6;92(23):1881-8. Chemoprevention of gastric dysplasia: randomized trial of antioxidant supplements and anti-helicobacter pylori therapy.
Correa P, Fontham ET, Bravo JC, Bravo LE, Ruiz B, Zarama G, Realpe JL, Malcom GT, Li D, Johnson WD, Mera R.Department of Pathology, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, New Orleans, LA 70112-1393, USA.
BACKGROUND: Previous research has identified a high risk of gastric carcinoma as well as a high prevalence of cancer precursor lesions in rural populations living in the province of Narino, Colombia, in the Andes Mountains. METHODS: A randomized, controlled chemoprevention trial was conducted in subjects with confirmed histologic diagnoses of multifocal nonmetaplastic atrophy and/or intestinal metaplasia, two precancerous lesions. Individuals were assigned to receive anti-Helicobacter pylori triple therapy and/or dietary supplementation with ascorbic acid, beta-carotene, or their corresponding placebos. Gastric biopsy specimens taken at baseline were compared with those taken at 72 months. Relative risks of progression, no change, and regression from multifocal nonmetaplastic atrophy and intestinal metaplasia were analyzed with multivariate polytomous logistic regression models to estimate treatment effects. All statistical tests were two-sided. RESULTS: All three basic interventions resulted in statistically significant increases in the rates of regression: Relative risks were 4.8 (95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.6-14.2) for anti-H. pylori treatment, 5. 1 (95% CI = 1.7-15.0) for beta-carotene treatment, and 5.0 (95% CI = 1.7-14.4) for ascorbic acid treatment in subjects with atrophy. Corresponding relative risks of regression in subjects with intestinal metaplasia were 3.1 (95% CI = 1.0-9.3), 3.4 (95% CI = 1.1-9.8), and 3.3 (95% CI = 1.1-9.5). Combinations of treatments did not statistically significantly increase the regression rates. Curing the H. pylori infection (which occurred in 74% of the treated subjects) produced a marked and statistically significant increase in the rate of regression of the precursor lesions (relative risks = 8.7 [95% CI = 2.7-28.2] for subjects with atrophy and 5.4 [95% CI = 1.7-17.6] for subjects with intestinal metaplasia). CONCLUSIONS: In the very high-risk population studied, effective anti-H. pylori treatment and dietary supplementation with antioxidant micronutrients may interfere with the precancerous process, mostly by increasing the rate of regression of cancer precursor lesions, and may be an effective strategy to prevent gastric carcinoma
1. Baron, J et al., ‘Neoplastic and antineoplastic effects of beta-carotene on volorectal adenoma’, Journal of the National Cancer Institute 95, 10, pp. 717–22 (2003).
Vitamin boosts may increase death rate of users, report says
By Jeremy Laurance, Health Editor
The Independent. 01 October 2004
Thousands of people could be dying prematurely from vitamin supplements, researchers report today, stating that the pills increase the death rate of those who take them by 6 per cent.
One in three women and one in four men in the UK is estimated to take dietary supplements for health reasons. But a review of 14 trials of vitamin pills taken by 170,000 people found they increased the death rate by 6 per cent. While they offered no explanation as to what caused the deaths, they discovered that the supplements offered no protection against cancers of the gut.
The researchers, writing in The Lancet, estimate that for every one million people taking the supplements, 9,000 would die prematurely as a result. The figure takes account of the background level of premature death in the population.
Dr Goran Bjelakovic, of the University of Nis in Serbia, who led the review, said: "We could not find evidence that antioxidant supplements can prevent gastrointestinal cancers. On the contrary, they seem to increase overall mortality."
Two UK experts described the findings as "somewhat chilling". Professor David Forman of the University of Leeds and Douglas Altman of Cancer Research UK says in The Lancet: "The prospect that vitamin pills may not only do no good but also kill their consumers is a scary speculation given the vast quantities that are used in certain communities."
The Lancet has printed the quote in large type on the cover of its current issue.
Professor Forman said yesterday that supplements could be useful for people such as pregnant women and the elderly, who might be unable to get adequate vitamins from their diet. But they did not offer a short cut to better health.
For the majority of the population who ate a balanced diet, there were no grounds for taking vitamin supplements, he said. "If someone has a good reason for taking these supplements other than to prevent cancer, then they should continue to do so. But I remain sceptical of their overall value."
The Lancet study is the latest to cast doubt on the value of dietary supplements.
A huge trial of betacarotene (the pre-cursor of vitamin A) and vitamin E in male smokers in 2000 found it increased the lung cancer rate by 18 per cent and the death rate by 8 per cent. Smokers are now advised against taking these vitamins pills.
A second trial of multivitamin supplements in people at high risk of heart disease published in 2002, also in The Lancet, found that after five years they had no protective effect against the risk of heart attacks, strokes, cancer or other serious health problems.
Vitamins are organic nutrients essential for normal metabolism and good health. But specialists say there is a difference between the life-long physiological effects of small amounts ingested in the diet from childhood and pharmacological doses of the same micronutrients taken over a few years by middle-aged adults.
For the latest study, the researchers examined the role of vitamins A, C, E and betacarotene (which is converted into vitamin A in the body) and the mineral selenium, taken either singly or in combination.
They investigated their effect against cancers of the oesophagus (gullet), stomach, bowel, pancreas and liver.
The results showed that a combination of betacarotene and vitamin A increased the death rate by 30 per cent and betacarotene combined with vitamin E increased it by 10 per cent. Selenium was associated with a lower risk of cancer, but the authors say this could be due to bias.
A possible explanation for the findings is that people may vary in their need for antioxidants (vitamins) according to the circulating levels of substances known as free radicals in the blood. Those with high levels of free radicals need extra vitamins to neutralise them but in those with low levels, extra vitamins may paradoxically protect cancer cells and have carcinogenic effects.
The researchers acknowledge they did not look at all trials of vitamin supplements in preventing death and their results are preliminary. The Lancet commentary says that the study is a "work in progress" and "does not provide convincing proof of hazard".
It adds: "In the event that a hazard is established from a complete review, these researchers will need to identify which specific interventions are associated with any risk. It is unlikely that all supplements will exert a similar effect and it will be vital to establish the safety profile for those with demonstrated benefits."
The Health Supplements Information Service, said in a statement yesterday that The Lancet findings were of "borderline statistical significance" and involved some vitamin doses above recommended safe levels. It added: "What is important to take away from this piece of research is that these results are preliminary and further investigations into the role of vitamins in cancer are needed."
Vitamins are either fat soluble or water soluble. The fat-soluble vitamins, which include A, D, E, and K, are absorbed by the body using processes that closely parallel the absorption of fat. They are stored in the liver and are used up by the body very slowly.
The water-soluble vitamins include C and the B complex vitamins. The body uses these vitamins very quickly and excess amounts are eliminated through the kidneys. Taking large doses of vitamin C or B, beyond what the body can immediately absorb, only creates expensive urine.
THE PROS AND CONS OF VITAMINS
Essential for growth, bone development, night vision and healthy skin.
Found in liver, dairy products and eggs. Also in dark red, green and yellow vegetables. Deficiency causes skin disorders, eye damage and may increase the risk of cancer.
Toxic in overdose, causing dizziness, nausea, vomiting and can cause damage to the bones, blood, skin and nervous system.
Found in many yellow fruits and vegetables.
Converted into vitamin A in the body (see above).
Essential for the production of collagen, the basic protein in bones, cartilage, tendons and ligaments. May help boost the immune system.
Found in citrus fruits, tomatoes, potatoes, cauliflowers and Brussels sprouts.
Deficiency causes tiredness, weight loss, irritability, bleeding gums, rough skin and wasting away of muscles. In extreme cases, scurvy.
High doses, above 2gms a day, may cause headaches and diarrhoea. Long-term high doses may increase risk for kidney stones.
Helps prevent cell membrane damage. May prevent blood clots and the formation of fatty plaques in the arteries.
Found in vegetable oil, avocados, nuts and soya beans. Also produced by bacteria in the intestines.
Deficiency may result in easy bruising and bleeding. May increase the risk of hip fractures in women.
Large doses may cause bleeding problems, rashes and itching.
For Health Freedom,
John C. Hammell, President
International Advocates for Health Freedom
556 Boundary Bay Road
Point Roberts, WA 98281-8702 USA