Breast Cancer Crankery From Mike Adams

The latest crankery from Adams is the evil male-chauvinist conspiracy to perpetuate breast cancer for fun and profit being led by none other than those dastardly villains of the American Cancer Society. With his stunning report and links to the thinkbeforeyoupink campaign, he rails against the ribbons that are a “symbol of male-dominated control over women”, and exposes the insidious lies of those who spend their lives looking for cures for this deadly disease.

In this report, you’ll learn how the cancer industry — which is dominated by powerful men — uses the same tactics today to control women while pretending to serve them. You’ll learn truly shocking information about how the cancer industry exploits women’s bodies to generate profits for pharmaceutical companies while systematically denying those same women access to information that could teach them how to avoid breast cancer (and other cancers) in the first place. A single nutrient, for example, has been shown to prevent 77 percent of all cancers, and yet the cancer industry — including top cancer non-profits — refuse to recommend this nutrient.

And unlike virtually every major cancer group in existence today (with a few exceptions that will be noted later), this report was not funded by a pharmaceutical company. That’s why it tells you the truth about an industry that prioritizes profits over public health — an industry that works hard to keep women ignorant about the real solutions to breast cancer (cancer-free women are no longer revenue-generating patients for cancer drug manufacturers.)

Adams truly has a sick and warped mind, and this report is yet more evidence that the altie-med movement isn’t satisfied pushing their ineffective pharmaceuticals, they also must denigrate evidence-based medicine and scare people away from potentially life-saving treatments.

Adams starts with a ludicrous appeal to other forms of medicine that have been completely outmoded by evidence based medicine.

There are numerous systems of medicine that exist in the world today: Chinese medicine, Ayurvedic medicine, Tibetan medicine, Western herbalism, American Indian medicine (with all its variations), rainforest herbs / Amazonian medicine, Australian aboriginal medicine, Hawaiian / Pacific islands medicine, etc.

Every such system of medicine is primarily based on the medicinal properties of plants that grow naturally in local regions. Australian aboriginal medicine, for example, is based on the numerous desert plants native to the Australian continent. Tibetan medicine is based on the medicinally-potent plants that grow in the harsh, high-altitude environments of Tibet. And Amazonian medicine is based on the abundant biodiversity of natural medicine found in rainforest botanicals.

Realize that every system of medicine has a treatment for breast cancer.

If these types of medicines actually had activity that could be proven efficacious against cancer, Western medicine would of course adopt them – as we have adopted many herbal remedies from the bark of the willow and yew trees, to artemisia. It is only the lack of proven efficacy of any of these remedies that prevents them from being entered into the pharmaceutical armentarium.

But in Adams’ broken mind, the mere existence of a “remedy” is proof of efficacy.

In other words, if you were to travel the world in search of treatments or cures for breast cancer, you would find hundreds, if not thousands, of such treatments spanning diverse cultures, geographies and medical paradigms. And these treatments really work: modern scientists are increasingly discovering that these native cancer remedies contain identifiable anti-cancer compounds that work in a myriad of ways. They might cut off the blood supply to cancer tumors, promote cancer cell apoptosis (cell death), block the replication of cancer cells, boost immune system function and so on.

There are literally thousands of different treatments for breast cancer used in various cultures around the world. Many, such as those in Chinese medicine, are meticulously documented and are based on thousands of years of research and clinical experience. Countless lives have been saved by these cancer treatments and cures from around the world. Yet the western cancer industry, comprised of cancer clinics, drug-company-funded cancer non-profits, pharmaceutical firms, hospitals, doctors, medical schools and medical journals, actually goes out of its way to deny women access to this information and wisdom about treating or preventing breast cancer.

One should note that the mere presence of dozens of folk-remedies doesn’t mean they are effective, likely the opposite is true. One notes that historically, when treatments for a disease don’t work, there are countless treatments for it. Once something efficacious is found, it usually ends up being only one product that eclipses the dozens of ineffective measures previously thrown at a disease. Show us the proof in a double-blind RCT Mike, and we’ll use it, no problem. However, I doubt this proof exists, as Adams is more than happy to cite the scientific literature as long as it conforms to his prejudices.

Adams then goes on to say not enough is done to prevent cancer by these groups, as if this is proof of his grand conspiracy to sicken women. Worse yet, the pink ribbon campaigns to raise money for breast cancer research are all part of an evil male plot.

Wearing pink for breast cancer, or buying pink products, is a demonstration of your support for the enslavement of women by a highly-unethical industry that seeks to turn women’s bodies into profit centers. Wearing pink shouts, “I support the ignorance of women! I support Big Pharma! I support male-dominated corporate control over the health of women’s breasts!”

Buying pink products sends the same message. Whether it’s a can of soup, a pair of pink batteries or even a pink “vacation” (yes, they do exist), these products are jumping on the pink bandwagon for one reason only: consumers buy it. Painting any product pink results in a sales surge.

Yes, people are more likely to buy a product if they perceive some good will result from the purchase, however Adams’ proof of an evil chauvinistic conspiracy is sorely lacking. It exists only in his own warped mind, that typical of a conspiracist, sees any profit from treating illness as a system of perpetuating illness. How it eludes him that herbals are big business is a mystery. And further, I have to ask. Which corporation is more evil? Is it the one that spends millions of dollars researching cures, and proving their efficacy using scientific techniques to make a profit on drugs(yes occasionally overselling drugs, and presenting only positive evidence)? Or the one that spends no money on research, pushes long-abandoned remedies that do nothing, with no proof, no oversight, and no accountability, all for profit? I see the snake-oil salesman as far more cynical and worthless than the pharmaceutical rep, who however dishonest and profit-driven at least sells a product that does something.

After blaming cosmetics for breast cancer – a completely unsubstantiated claim, Adams rambles on to the idea that there is a grand conspiracy to keep blacks sick by censoring all information about vitamin D deficiency. Now here there is something interesting to note. Vitamin D deficiency is a problem for dark-skinned people, especially in the northern latitudes. Further, supplementation with vitamin D does appear to broadly decrease cancer rates and all-cause mortality in older people. It’s enough of an effect that the government should consider expanding the fortification program to increase rates of vitamin D consumption which has already been in place for decades to prevent rickets. It is not without some risk, as vitamin D is not a completely safe vitamin like vitamin C, it does have a specific toxic syndrome, but it is unusual and not going to occur from a normal diet and sunlight exposure. Excessive supplementation is, however, a risk.

The great irony, however, is that in uncovering this grand conspiracy by cancer researchers to keep people in the dark about simple things like vitamin D supplementation, he cites cancer researchers studying the benefits of vitamin D for preventing cancer! That’s some conspiracy to keep people ignorant, you know, publishing all this research so it’s imminently available on Pubmed and google scholar.

There’s more crankery in this report that I feel like addressing. Suggesting the increasing cancer rates in blacks are part of a conspiracy to make them sick by the evil pharmaceutical machine for instance. Oddly enough, this is likely due to increased economic justice. It’s unlikely the increasing rates of cancer in the black population is due to some sudden real increase in cancer. Rather, better screening means increased diagnosis and tracking of disease – in other words a sign that people are getting more and better care. Many apparent increases in diseases usually reflect increased detection or an aging population, not an actual increase in the disease, which lacking some new exposure or environmental variable, should be relatively constant. To an idiot looking at cancer rates, it might appear they’ve increased exponentially in the last couple of centuries (everybody panic), but this is instead a reflection that life expectancies increased from the mid-30s to the mid-70s, and cancer is studied more and screened for more effectively. People are living longer to die of different things, and we are better able to detect these diseases. All of these correlative effects scream “analysis by idiot” to me, and aren’t worthy of serious discussion.

However, I would like to address his 10 questions to ask yourself about the “cancer industry”.

#1: Why does the cancer industry refuse to educate people about cancer prevention?

It’s not clear why one would expect pharmaceutical companies to be responsible for this activity, it should be a goal of government and physicians groups to increase knowledge of prevention – which they do. Maybe it’s because Adams is so virulently anti-TV that he doesn’t realize there are campaigns to prevent unhealthy activities, like smoking, that increase risks of cancer. Also, not visiting real physicians (in fact discouraging the type of education and screening he advocates), he must not realize that cancer prevention and screening is part of routine medical checkups.

#2: If people keep donating money for the “search” for a cancer cure, why won’t drug companies pledge to “open source” their patents on cancer drugs to benefit the people whose donations funded them in the first place? In other words, why do people donate money for cancer research but then get charged for cancer drugs?

This is a pretty idiotic point. All cancer research != pharmaceutical science, and the pharma companies still are responsible for very large financial investments in testing for efficacy of treatments. Maybe because Adams doesn’t understand that drug efficacy is something that actually needs to be tested in RCTs, he is ignorant of the huge costs of these studies.

#3: Why does the entire cancer industry so strongly dissuade people from using sunlight exposure to dramatically reduce their cancer risk? (Hint: Follow the money to the sunscreen industry…)

Ah yes, another conspiratorial link – between the makers of sunscreen and makers of vincristine. I should have seen it! Doctors do encourage their patients to get sun exposure so they get adequate vitamin D. This could be something that is emphasized more I’m sure, especially in patients with dark skin – not regular users of sunscreen I’ve noticed, and people who are indoors a great deal such as nursing home residents. I don’t think that qualifies as evidence for a grand conspiracy, and Adams could do more good by raising awareness of vitamin D deficiency without scaring people away from the doctors who might be able to recognize and treat it.

#4: Why have all the really good cancer supplements, clinics and naturopaths been banned, arrested or run out of the country? (Look up the FDA’s oppression of Lane Labs over MGN-3 for a fascinating review of this…)

Because their treatments don’t work and kill people who could benefit from real medicine. That’s easy. People who promise cures and give people ineffective remedies when better alternatives exist are called quacks. Good riddance to them.

#5: The U.S. has poured billions of dollars into the cancer industry over the last three decades. Cancer cures were promised in the 1970’s. Why are cancer rates still essentially the same today as they were in the 1970’s?

Ah yes, the “where’s our cures” fallacy you often see in anti-medical cranks from HIV/AIDS denialists (like Mike Adams!) to the bashers of peer-review. The fact is that cancer is not a monolithic entity. It is 100s of diseases, usually multiple cancers can form from any of the 200 or so tissue types. Also, many cancers have improved in treatment over the last three decades. Some have excellent cure rates, like cervical cancer or CML, others, not so much. But that reflects the incredible diversity and complexity of cancerous diseases.

#6: Why does the cancer industry continue to use chemotherapy, radiation and other toxic procedures to “kill tumors” when the latest science clearly shows that cancer tumors are only the symptoms, not the cause, of cancer? Chemotherapy destroys immune function and causes permanent damage to the heart, brain and liver…

We use these treatments because we can prove in RCTs that they extend life. Further cancer tumors are not symptoms, they are the cause of cancer. This is the most frightening piece of backwards logic that Adams purveys – very similar to the disease causes germ nonsense of germ-theory deniers. Cancer does not cause tumors. Tumors are the cancer! Eliminate the tumors and the cells that give rise to them and you eliminate the disease.

#7: The World Health Organization says that 70% of all cancers are easily preventable through dietary and lifestyle changes. This latest research shows that sunlight and low-cost calcium supplements can slash cancer risk by 77% in women. Why won’t conventional medicine embrace this low-cost, safe and highly effective method for preventing cancer?

We do, you got these facts from our literature, not yours. Increasing education of these interventions, and getting physicians to be more aware would be helpful, but the fact is that people will never modify their lifestyle to eliminate all risky behaviors.

#8: The cancer industry routinely attacks anti-cancer herbs, superfoods and supplements. Why is the cancer industry opposed to anti-cancer nutrition? Why does it believe that only man, not nature, can manufacture anti-cancer medicines?

Nature does manufacture anti-cancer medicines, and we use them when they are proven to work, again, show efficacy, and the treatments will be used. The idea that the “cancer industry” will only use things they can make a profit from prevents them from exploiting herbals is silly. If they can extract the active ingredient from even a well-known herbal remedy – generating a more potent, consistent and reliable drug – they’ll get a patent, they’ll make money, and it will enter the armentarium. That is, if the herbal remedy actually has efficacy, which they usually do not.

#9: Dark skin pigmentation blocks ultraviolet radiation, meaning that people with black skin need far more time under the sun to generate the same amount of vitamin D as someone with white skin. Not surprisingly, black women suffer extremely high rates of breast cancer while black men show similarly high levels of prostate cancer. The white-dominated medical industry pretends to be “mystified” by all this. Why won’t conventional medicine simple tell black people the truth about vitamin D, skin pigmentation and cancer? Why do oncologists try to keep black people ignorant about their vitamin D deficiencies?

We do. Maybe if Adams actually went to doctors rather than spending all his time vilifying them as monsters he’d see this.

#10: Why is it illegal for nutritional supplement manufacturers to tell the truth about the anti-cancer effects of their products? Broccoli, garlic, onions and sprouts all have powerful anti-cancer effects, as do dozens of rainforest herbs (Cat’s Claw, for example), Chinese herbs and Western herbs. But the FDA threatens and censors any company that dares to mention cancer prevention on its supplement products. Why is the FDA enforcing a policy of nutritional ignorance with U.S. consumers? Why does the federal government want people to remain ignorant of methods for preventing or treating cancer?

Hahahaha. Illegal? Maybe to lie about the efficacy of a product is illegal. Because you see, telling a lie is not illegal. But telling a lie to sell something is known as fraud. If you can show efficacy, you can say what you want. If you say something that is unproven or disproved to sell your snake oil, you go to jail. It’s simple.

Thus ends our evaluation of the latest altie-med nonsense from conspiracy theorist, HIV/AIDS denialist, and crank extraordinaire Mike Adams.
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Comments

  1. #1 Ted
    October 10, 2007

    Note: Those of us with Commodore64 brains can’t get all this wailing away into 39k of usable RAM. Probably should be broken in two at the point you go into 10 questions.

    Just a suggestion from the peanut gallery.

  2. #2 Rob Hinkley
    October 10, 2007

    Like many conspiracy theorist diatribes, this one isn’t even internally consistent: Adams says “Why does the cancer industry continue to “kill tumors” … the latest science clearly shows that cancer tumors are only the symptoms, not the cause, of cancer”, but earlier sang the praises of native remedies which he claims “really work … contain identifiable anti-cancer compounds that work in a myriad of ways. They might cut off the blood supply to cancer tumors, promote cancer cell apoptosis (cell death), block the replication of cancer cells”. It seems that native remedies which “kill tumors” are good and effective, but modern treatments which kill tumors are aiming at the wrong target.

  3. #3 Size
    October 10, 2007

    “Which corporation is more evil? Is it the one that spends millions of dollars researching cures, and proving their efficacy using scientific techniques to make a profit on drugs(yes occasionally overselling drugs, and presenting only positive evidence)? Or the one that spends no money on research, pushes long-abandoned remedies that do nothing, with no proof, no oversight, and no accountability, all for profit? I see the snake-oil salesman as far more cynical and worthless than the pharmaceutical rep, who however dishonest and profit-driven at least sells a product that does something.”

    Brilliant. Wonderfully said, Mark.

  4. #4 Tim Farley
    October 10, 2007

    Thanks for again pointing out the idiocy of Mike Adams. A few months back I spent an afternoon browsing his various websites (he seems to have hundreds of different domain names), and he truly is a nut.

    However, are you sure that thinkbeforeyoupink.org is his doing? I just did a couple of WHOIS checks and whatnot, and it appears to be a project of a legitimate San Francisco-based brest cancer group. Most of Mike Adams’ domains are registered in Taiwan.

    I think its possible he just latched onto that other site as some sort of post-hoc rationalization of his nutty breast cancer arguments.

  5. #5 MarkH
    October 10, 2007

    Changed the wording a little to reflect that Tim. Although I think the campaign is total nonsense. There is no evidence linking breast cancer to cosmetics. Their points about some other environmental pollutants may be more relevant, but still, these are tenuous links. I found them pretty cranky.

  6. #6 Rod
    October 10, 2007

    The sun “cures” cancer? The sun causes cancer! Melanoma (skin cancer) is caused by the sun. The whole diatribe does not consider Africa. If you have white skin in Africa, skin cancer is more of an issue than vitamin D. The weather reports give a UV-B index, how likely you are to get sun-burnt or skin-cancer . Vitamin D might be a problem in the high north latitudes, but in tropical or sub-tropical latitudes skin cancer is a bigger problem. Severe sun-burn is not funny either.
    The world is a big scary place!

  7. #7 Greg
    October 10, 2007

    Not too long ago I came across an article published by the University of FL about a Brazilian berry containing antioxidants that destroyed cultured human cancer cells. The study showed that extract from the ACAI berry triggered a self-response in up to 86% of leukemia cells tested. While the article stresses that they are not giving false hope, I found it to be intriguing. I also read that the antioxidant protection of the acai berry neutralizes free radicals before they can damage skin
    cells. I then came across a fruit juice called Monavie. This juice is made up of 19 fruits including the ACAI berry. The recommended daily dose is 2oz in the morning and 2oz at night. My family is currently drinking this and while none of us suffer from cancer we are getting all other kinds of healthy benefits, such as more energy, joint pain has gone away, high blood pressure and high cholesterol levels have leveld off in the normal range. It has been truly amazing. To learn more please visit: http://www.mymonavie.com/richardfamily or garmonavie@aol.com

  8. #8 ChrisC
    October 10, 2007

    Where I live (Australia), we have the highest instance of skin cancer, including sun sourced cancer such as melanoma, in the world. State and federal governments both run TV ads, newspaper ads and other general public awareness campaigns about PREVENTING cancer! I’m sure it’s no different in many other countries.

    Funnily enough, Adams doesn’t mention this very visible, scientifically grounded anti-cancer campaign. Damn that sunscreen industry!

  9. #9 Kelly
    October 12, 2007

    This is definitely a great article to the treatment for breast cancer. absolutely loved reading all of the answers to the questions!

  10. #10 Mr. Gunn
    October 13, 2007

    Dear Greg, you’ve got some balls, shilling your herbal remedies on this blog.

  11. #11 joann
    October 24, 2007

    I was reading around some of the posts here and I found interesting things that you guys talk about it. Obesity also increases your risk for breast, prostate, ovarian, endometrial, and colorectal cancers. Losing weight is hard, but it is definately worth it.

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