Respectful Insolence

There are times when I get really depressed writing this blog. It’s not because I don’t enjoy it, although like any long term hobby my blogging does occasionally feel like more of an obligation than a hobby. That’s only part of the time, though. Most of the time I really do enjoy what I do. That doesn’t mean that it doesn’t get to me from time to time, however. After all, how much quackery, pseudoscience, and woo can a plastic box of blinking multicolored lights stand on a daily basis for five years. I would submit to you that Orac is made of quite stern stuff indeed. Still, it’s depressing to see just how far a physician will go over to the dark side.

Such a physician is Dr. Joe Mercola, whose site rivals Mike Adams’ NaturalNews.com for the title of biggest repository of medical woo on the Internet. There are differences, of course. For instance, Dr. Mercola comes across as seemingly reasonable as he promotes the worst forms of quackery while Mike Adams comes across as unhinged…as he promotes the worst forms of quackery. And, make no mistake, quackery much of it is. The latest example is yet another instance of Mercola taking advantage of the H1N1 pandemic to promote the rankest pseudoscience to an unsuspecting world in an article entitled Overlooked 150 Year Old Household Cleaner a Remedy for Swine Flu? It’s hard to find a more clearly fallacious set of arguments. In fact, this time around Mercola makes Dana Ullman’s support of homeopathy seem almost reasonable.

Well, not really, but Mercola sure does try. Basically, he tries to convince his readers that baking soda will cure H1N1. First, he references a woo-filled article that claims:

In today’s modern world of medicine the FDA just will not let companies that sell products make medical claims about them unless they have been tested at great expense and approved as a drug. But this was not always the case and as we can see in the information in this chapter, which is from a 1924 booklet,[1] published by the Arm & Hammer Soda Company. On page 12 the company starts off saying, “The proven value of Arm & Hammer Bicarbonate of Soda as a therapeutic agent is further evinced by the following evidence of a prominent physician named Dr. Volney S. Cheney, in a letter to the Church & Dwight Company:

“In 1918 and 1919 while fighting the ‘Flu’ with the U. S. Public Health Service it was brought to my attention that rarely any one who had been thoroughly alkalinized with bicarbonate of soda contracted the disease, and those who did contract it, if alkalinized early, would invariably have mild attacks. I have since that time treated all cases of ‘Cold,’ Influenza and LaGripe by first giving generous doses of Bicarbonate of Soda, and in many, many instances within 36 hours the symptoms would have entirely abated. Further, within my own household, before Woman’s Clubs and Parent-Teachers’ Associations, I have advocated the use of Bicarbonate of Soda as a preventive for “Colds,” with the result that now many reports are coming in stating that those who took “Soda” were not affected, while nearly every one around them had the “Flu.”

Amazing, isn’t it? Doesn’t it remind you of the claims of homeopaths that homeopathy routinely produced better results treating the flu during the 1918 influenza pandemic than “conventional” medicine? This was a claim derived from a story that homeopaths relate of W.A. Dewey, MD, who allegedly reported that among patients treated by homeopaths there was a mortality rate of just over 1%, which is less than half the reported case fatality rate observed during the pandemic. Of course, in the story it’s not mentioned that the real case fatality rate was around 2.5% for the pandemic; homepaths claim it was their woo producing a 1% death rate versus a 30% death rate among those treated by conventional doctors.

Much like Dr. Dewey, if you Google Dr. Volney S. Cheney virtually all you will find is various quack-friendly websites citing this same story. Moreover, it’s hard not to point out that this physician’s claims appeared in promotional literature for Arm & Hammer Baking Soda. Arm & Hammer was trying to sell a product, and it could produce no studies that suported its claims for its baking soda. It’s just a friggin’ pamphlet. Woo-meisters fallaciously claim that modern medicine isn’t supported by evidence, but here they cite a nearly 90 year old pamphlet published before there were laws in place to require that advertisements claiming a health benefit due to a product have evidence to back them up.

Dr. Mercola then goes on to comment on his own. Hilariously, he warns that “many believe” that Arm & Hammer Baking Soda is “contaminated” with aluminum (and so what if it is?) and asks for more information before promoting baking soda as in essence a cure-all. In this, he is no different from “alkalinization master” Robert O. Young. Dr. Young even claims that “alkalinzation” with sodium bicarbonate will cure cancer. However, Mercola didn’t choose to cite Young. Why, I don’t know. He would seem to be the perfect go-to guy for this sort of thing. On the other hand, Mercola seems to prefer his own variety of acid-base quacks, guys like Dr. Tullio Simoncini and another one I hadn’t heard of, Mark Sircus, Ac, OMD, who buys into the same woo. He also clearly doesn’t understand basic physiology:

Cancer is, fundamentally, a relatively simple oxygen
deficiency disease and the use of bicarbonate
increases oxygen carrying and reaching capacity.

Um, no. Not really. It’s true that increasing the pH of the blood causes hemoglobin to “hold onto” oxygen more tightly, but the problem with that is that oxygen doesn’t do the cells much good unless it can be delivered to the cells, which doesn’t happen as well in regions of high pH. There’s a perfectly good physiological reason for this. Tissues lacking oxygen turn to anaerobic metabolism, and when they do they generate lactic acid, which lowers the pH. Hemoglobin “lets go” of oxygen more easily when the pH is low (acidic).

Mercola is then stupid enough to reference this video by Dr. Simoncini, which I deconstructed before as being so hopelessly ignorant of the science behind cancer. Remember, Simoncini is the guy who thinks that cancer is a fungus because, according to him, cancer is white and fungi are white. Apparently he’s never heard of melanoma or other pigmented cancers or the many varieties of quite colorful fungus. Ignorance this deep is truly an art. A black art, but an art. Sadly, Sircus tries to outdo even Simoncini:

In his book Winning the War on Cancer, Dr. Sircus writes:

“Sodium bicarbonate is the time honored method to ‘speed up’ the return of the body’s bicarbonate levels to normal. Bicarbonate is inorganic, very alkaline and like other mineral type substances, supports an extensive list of biological functions.

Sodium bicarbonate happens to be one of our most useful medicines because bicarbonate physiology is fundamental to life and health.”

Many chemotherapy treatments actually include sodium bicarbonate to help protect the patient’s kidneys, heart and nervous system. It’s been said that administering chemotherapy without bicarbonate could possibly kill you on the spot.

The stupid, it burns! Much like dropping some concentrated sodium hydroxide to “alkalinize” your skin would burn, actually. The reason that sodium bicarbonate is provided as part of a chemotherapy regimen is not to treat the tumor, but to protect the kidneys. Some chemotherapy regimens cause massive tumor cell lysis, and alkalinization of the blood with large doses of sodium bicarbonate helps prevent uric acid from tumor cell lysis from precipitating in the kidney and causing renal failure if urine pH can be kept above 7.0. Indeed, the syndrome has a name: Tumor lysis syndrome. Moreover, Tumor lysis syndrome doesn’t occur unless the chemotherapy has been very successful in killing tumor cells. Sircus is also apparently unaware that there has been some rethinking of whether alkalinization of the urine is as beneficial as once thought; it’s not as routinely done as it used to be. Maybe sodium bicarbonate isn’t so great after all.

Of course, that doesn’t keep Sircus from leaping to this claim:

Could it be that while mixing chemo poisons with baking soda, any improvements seen are the result of the baking soda, and not the toxic poisons? Dr. Sircus believes that may be the case.

“There are no studies separating the effects of bicarbonate from the toxic chemotherapy agents, nor will there ever be,” he says.

There’s a reason for that: It isn’t the bicarbonate that’s causing massive tumor cell lysis. It’s also unethical to give a patient bicarbonate alone without chemotherapy, which is the only way to “separate the effects” of bicarbonate from those of chemotherapy. The reason it’s unethical is because it’s unethical to deny effective treatment to a patient with cancer. In any case, Sircus is just as ignorant as Simoncini; he’s confusing an adjunct use of chemotherapy in a supportive role to try to prevent the complications of killing tumors with chemotherapy with using it therapeutically to treat cancer. I suppose I should be happy that he hasn’t claimed that cancer is a fungus. Little things like that save my sanity.

Dr. Mercola tries to represent himself as a “reasonable” booster of “alternative medicine” in contrast to all those quacks out there. However, given how he clearly buys into (or cynically sells) acid-base woo to his readers, I’m hearing a quacking sound, and it’s emanating from Mercola. He’s promoting quackery for H1N1 in this instance, and he’s promoting cancer quackery from Sircus and Simoncini.

You know, I’m starting to like Mike Adams better. At least he doesn’t pretend to be something he’s not.

Comments

  1. #1 History Punk
    December 16, 2009

    If this is true, why isn’t Church & Dwight Co., Inc. (the manufacturers of Arm & Hammer) along with stores like Wal-Mart pimping out this knowledge to what would be their conceivable benefit?

  2. #2 Storytellerdoc
    December 16, 2009

    If nothing else, this post is good food for thought. What possibly led someone to thinking baking soad is a cure? Job well done.

  3. #3 superdave
    December 16, 2009

    And it also makes a great 7th grade science fair project when you mix it with vinegar!

  4. #4 spudbeach
    December 16, 2009

    I always thought there was a good word to describe a patient with a blood pH of 8.0:

    Dead.

    Seriously, give me a break! A 10 second search leads to a wiki giving the normal pH range of blood as 7.35 to 7.45. What can baking soda do here? There are so many buffers and competing reactions to keep the pH in line that a reasonable amount of baking soda does nothing, while a large amount of baking soda results in death.

    But hey, if the woo-meisters can build a whole modality around water, why should I be surprised when they make baking soda an elixer?

  5. #5 Johannes9126
    December 16, 2009

    Isn’t Mercola the quack that promotes Hamer’s Germanic New Medicine on Youtube?

  6. #6 Jojo
    December 16, 2009

    To be fair, I’ve found baking soda to be the one true cure…for grimy surfaces. For H1N1, I’ll stick with the CDC’s recommendations.

  7. #7 Mandrake
    December 16, 2009

    My homemade buttermilk pancakes have baking soda in them, and I have yet to contract H1N1. Coincidence?

  8. #8 Christophe Thill
    December 16, 2009

    Sodium bicarbonate can be used (in reasnoable doses!) to make the teeth whiter. Add a teaspoon to a gallon of water, water your potted plants with the solution, and it will fight the fungal attacks they may have.

    Well, actually, all I can say is that it seems to work. Molds don’t seem to like alkaline water. but any scientific arguments would be welcome.

    As for the flu remedy aspect: seems to me that the 1918 Spanish Flu caused people to desperately look for cures, which they sometimes believed they had found. Another case is Oscillococcinum. Just as crazy as baking soda, actually. And suffering from the same confusion between “cold” and “flu”. Not quite the same, is it?

  9. #9 Calli Arcale
    December 16, 2009

    In today’s modern world of medicine the FDA just will not let companies that sell products make medical claims about them unless they have been tested at great expense and approved as a drug. But this was not always the case and as we can see in the information in this chapter, which is from a 1924 booklet,[1] published by the Arm & Hammer Soda Company.

    To be fair, he is correct. It was indeed not always the case that companies had to prove their claims before selling the products as drugs. In 1924, they could say anything they damn well pleased. Lysol was being sold as a douche, for goodness sakes. I have absolutely no doubt whatsoever that Arm & Hammer really did make these claims. It’s pretty astonishing that somebody who normally rails against the marketing excesses of Big Pharma would take them at their word, though.

    But then, consistency was never Mercola’s strong point.

  10. #10 Dangerous Bacon
    December 16, 2009

    I have it on excellent authority* that a box of Arm & Hammer baking soda, when placed at the bedside of wooists like Mercola, will soak up ignorance overnight, leading to low levels of woo-stupidity (at least to begin the day). Absorbs Candida and toxins too.

    *Hey, my unsupported contention is as good as anyone else’s.

  11. #11 Gus Snarp
    December 16, 2009

    “in many, many instances within 36 hours the symptoms would have entirely abated” – Right, but isn’t that generally the case with flu? Even with cold, but the time someone bothers to see a doctor about it aren’t they likely to be within 36 hours of it running it’s course?

  12. #12 David N. Brown
    December 16, 2009

    The lead in sounds very similar to one about Onions preventing H1N1. I’m sure that is a recapitulation of Medieval beliefs. I recently ran across a story to reinforce this opinion, about serbs preferring garlic over vaccines to combat the flu. Serbs were digging up and “killing” the undead into at least the 1920s!

  13. #13 Denice Walter
    December 16, 2009

    Mercola is in an interesting position: unlike the WildBoyz of Woo(Adams and Null),he has a medical degree(a DO) but still takes advantage of the “Fear Big Pharma/FDA/Allopathy” theme.He is telling potential patients,”Don’t trust the ‘orthodoxy’”,but then if they are uncertain, he can always say,”I *am* a real doctor!”.Opportunism is a common thread in Woo-world: Mercola is able to sniff out the fear of illness,medical procedures,and the “unknown” that most people experience, and rather than counseling and educating them (as his professional training would require), he starts up his sales spiel. This opportunism (and the manipulation that follows)enable the aforementioned idiots to instantaneously become experts in whatever is worrying people: (e.g.) because I manage money, I *need* to know where the economy “is going”(so I can take remedial action),over the past 2+ years,I’ve been closely watching and *simultaneously* observing Adams’ and Null’s reactions to the financial crisis: both have become economic “experts”, prognosticators, and financial advisors,creating “courses”,”methods”, and “documentaries” to “help” people deal with these very serious issues.And their advice is truely abysmal, on par with their medical indiscretions; in short, they capitalize on fear. When uncertainty reigns, Woo steps in.

  14. #14 Kemist
    December 16, 2009

    But hey, if the woo-meisters can build a whole modality around water, why should I be surprised when they make baking soda an elixer?

    meh. They will promote almost anything, as long as it’s useless for its purported use. Sometimes they will even promote the very same chemical with one name, and decry it’s use in medecine by another name. Or promote one chemical by one route of admistration and then say that another route is teh evil (ex.: squalene/lanosterol, coffee).

    None of it has to make sense – when you’re uneducated in the science and sure you know everything of importance, there’s very little chance of you finding out that what you’re being told makes no sense. So pretty much anyone can make you swallow anything. You could sell them mercury enemas and they would buy them.

    The thing I was most surprised about was to hear that some people rubbed themselves with DMSO – an industrial solvent. WTF ? I used to wear gloves when manipulating that crap, to avoid it taking every shit dissolved in it through my skin. And we used USP grade. I wouldn’t be too sure that what’s sold in health food stores is that pure.

  15. #15 Gil
    December 16, 2009

    It’d be nice if such quackery did help to go some way in chlorinating the gene pool.

  16. #16 KeithB
    December 16, 2009

    I believe that Baking Soda would have done well against the Andromeda Strain, too.

  17. #17 Jay K.
    December 16, 2009

    #12: “The lead in sounds very similar to one about Onions preventing H1N1.”

    Why, I’m wearing one on my belt right now! Height of fashion.

  18. #18 Berner
    December 16, 2009

    @#17

    “You couldn’t get white onions, because of the war.”

  19. #19 James Sweet
    December 16, 2009

    In today’s modern world of medicine the FDA just will not let companies that sell products make medical claims about them unless they have been tested at great expense and approved as a drug. But this was not always the case and as we can see in the information in this chapter, which is from a 1924 booklet,

    In today’s modern world of democracy the US gov’t just will not let someone become leader of the country unless he or she has campaigned at great expense and been elected president. But this was not always the case as we can see in the information in this chapter, which regards brutal oppression by hereditary monarchies…

  20. #20 Sid Offit
    December 16, 2009

    It’s disappointing that you refuse to accept anything that does not fit into your narrow-minded “scientific” view of the world. There are thousands of people benefiting from non- traditional therapies that you refuse to acknowledge. Here for example is a link to a miracle spring water that can cure cancer, heal the lame, end drug addiction and create financial abundance. The testimonies of those experiencing the miraculous benefits derived from this water are far more convincing than your own self-described skeptcism

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dXZoJ9d3pDs&feature=related

  21. #21 Travis
    December 16, 2009

    Is Sid being sarcastic or does he really mean that?

    Because if I was trying to write a gag post trying to sound like a woo-pusher I would have written it just like that. Ignore the content of the post, talk about narrow-minded views, testimonials as proof, an apparent cure-all treatment. Exactly what I would include. But of course, it just seems so real as well.

  22. #22 Kemist
    December 16, 2009

    It’s disappointing that you refuse to accept anything that does not fit into your narrow-minded “scientific” view of the world.

    “It pays to keep an open mind, but not so open your brains fall out.”

    -Carl Sagan

  23. #23 Chris
    December 16, 2009

    “Bicarbonate is inorganic, very alkaline and like other mineral type substances, supports an extensive list of biological functions.”

    Bicarbonate is inorganic? It’s been a while since I took high school chemistry, but isn’t the definition of an organic compound that it has carbon in it?

  24. #24 Pablo
    December 16, 2009

    Chris – bicarbonate reactivity is a lot more like that for inorganic salts, and so I wouldn’t quibble if someone called it inorganic. Just having carbon in it is not always the only thing to consider. For example, iron carbonyl has carbon in it (5 in fact) but isn’t organic, or even considered organometallic. Bicarbonate is a little more complicated (doesn’t have a central metal), but still, it’s not worth arguing about. I also wouldn’t object if someone considered it an organic salt.

  25. #25 Rene Najera
    December 16, 2009

    I once used baking soda to cure hunger. Does that count?

  26. #26 Kemist
    December 16, 2009

    Chris

    In fact, as an organic chemist, I would most object to “very alkaline” in the description of soda than I would object to it being called inorganic – presence of carbon wouldn’t suffice to describe something as organic in my book – I wouldn’t think of diamonds or graphite as organic, for instance.

    But describing soda as “very alkaline” is a very good demonstration of one’s ignorance of chemistry – soda is quit feeble as bases go.

    I reserve the term “very alkaline” to stuff like, I don’t know, butyllithium. If they want to use this stuff in their “medicine”, well, they’d better have their funerals arranged already.

  27. #27 Chris
    December 16, 2009

    Gotcha, thanks for the explanation. Would it be correct to say all organic compounds contain carbon, but not all carbon-containing compounds are organic? I’m guessing over the years that got whittled down to organic = carbon in my head.

  28. #28 Pablo
    December 16, 2009

    What Kemist said, except to add that I still consider hydroxide to be pretty alkaline. Carboxylates? Not so much.

  29. #29 Kemist
    December 16, 2009

    I once used baking soda to cure hunger. Does that count?

    Was it perchance used in a formulation containing flour, butter, eggs, sugar and chocolate chips as non-medicinal ingredients?

  30. #30 Pablo
    December 16, 2009

    Gotcha, thanks for the explanation. Would it be correct to say all organic compounds contain carbon, but not all carbon-containing compounds are organic?

    I don’t know. For example, I could easily envision ammonia as part of the series of amines: Me3N, Me2NH, MeNH2, NH3

    So I wouldn’t consider it huge stretch to categorize ammonia as organic. Then again, I wouldn’t complain if it weren’t.

    Actually, by this same argument, water could even be considered part of the organic alcohol series, although I think that bulk water is unique in many respects that make it less so. I can tell you that in the gas-phase, however, the properties of water are far more consistent with what you would project based on the trend of organic alcohols

  31. #31 becca
    December 16, 2009

    I thought it was Windex that did that?
    (@~4:40sec in)

  32. #32 Daniel J. Andrews
    December 16, 2009

    Baking soda is white, cancer is white, like cures like…

    …really, not a giant leap. ;-)

  33. #33 Dangerous Bacon
    December 16, 2009

    Orac: “You know, I’m starting to like Mike Adams better. At least he doesn’t pretend to be something he’s not.”

    And speaking of Mike Adams, the King of Natural Nooz has recently featured the wondrous baking soda cancer cure on his website, courtesy of one of his armada of “citizen journalists”. The article contains the story of a guy named Vernon, who beat stage 4 prostate cancer by using baking soda and molasses. There are even comments by Drs. Simoncini and Sircus:

    “Dr. Mark Sircus in his September 2009 newsletter stated: “My overall treatment philosophy for cancer is to trap the cancer in a deadly crossfire and beat the crap out of it with safe concentrated nutritional medicinals and solid health practices including plenty of sun exposure, exercise, touch via massage, and breathing techniques that you can see on Vernon`s site. But, as Vernon`s case demonstrates, the sodium bicarbonate is the lead . . . power . . . itself”.”

    Shouldn’t that be “lead powder”?

    My favorite part of the article is when it gloats about there being more than 400 alternative cancer cures that the Medical Mafia hasn’t been able to suppress. It’s confusing though…if baking soda and alkalinizing your body will beat the crap out of cancer, why do you need 400 other alternative cures? Hell, if I can get my pH up to 9 or so, no cancer/fungus/liver fluke will ever be able to infest me.

  34. #34 Kemist
    December 16, 2009

    With all this “alkalize your body” stuff, I’m just waiting for the day these doofuses finally get their hands on pH paper and start experimenting like preschoolers on all kinds of things as “remedies”.

    How long till one of them proposes the “soap cure”, with its super-powered version, the soap enema, because soap, it’s magical ’cause it’s alkaline, and of course everyone knows everything is so much better when you stuff it up there.

    I’m tempted to start an email chain with this as the for-everything-that-ails-you cure that Big Pharmer has supressed, but I just know that with there exist people ignorant, stupid and gullible enough for it to backfire when I finally admit that it was a hoax. And other people cynical enough to start selling it as a cure to the former.

    Sigh.

  35. #35 MIke Weaver
    December 16, 2009

    What I don’t understand is if:

    A) Cancer actually was so easy to cure

    B) Cures for cancer just fell out of trees (in some cases, literally)

    C) There’s over 400 cures

    D) So many people know the “secrets” that big pharma want to repress

    Why are there still folks dying of cancer?

    Given that a percentage of all folks who have cancer will try at least one of these alt-med ‘cures’, it should be detectable in the data for cancer diagnoses and cancer survival. Yet I don’t see the headlines. I don’t see the legions of cured cancer patients lining up to tell their stories (with documented diagnoses, of course).

    I know, I’m just making a point, badly. I just can’t see why a rational person would think that there is a genuine cure for one of the toughest diseases facing humanity right now in “common household cleaners” and “nutritional supplements”. If it worked, it’d be the biggest news in ages.

    It amuses me that the alt-med folks tout their products and regimens as ‘cures’ more often than not. Always going for the brass ring, eh? I don’t see them claim “our magic elixir will prolong your life an additional 6 months if you have cancer!”. Nope, it’s “it’ll cure you!!!111!!OMGBBQ”

    Sigh.

  36. #36 jli
    December 16, 2009

    [Quote]Simoncini is the guy who thinks that cancer is a fungus because, according to him, cancer is white and fungi are white. Apparently he’s never heard of melanoma or other pigmented cancers or the many varieties of quite colorful fungus.[Endquote]
    And apparantly he never thought of the possibility of verifying his hypothesis err…. checking out his idea with a quick glance in a microscope.

  37. #37 Mike Weaver
    December 16, 2009

    Khemist wrote: With all this “alkalize your body” stuff, I’m just waiting for the day these doofuses finally get their hands on pH paper and start experimenting like preschoolers on all kinds of things as “remedies”.

    My sister-in-law is into this, to a small degree. She subscribes to the notion that our diet is too acidic and it’s making us sick. We need more alkaline foods for good health.

    I tried discussing the Ph regulation of the body, etc, but I finally just said: “If the Ph of your food can cause that much of an impact on your health, shouldn’t an antacid tablet be much more powerful?”

    I mean, if you think that you need to eat more alkaline foods to balance your acidic diet, just have a Tums ™ after the meal, no?

    Oh and cut all that nasty vitamin C…

  38. #38 Joe Schwarcz
    December 16, 2009

    Hmmm…Did Orac really use “like” and “Mike Adams” in the same sentence?

  39. #39 Sastra
    December 16, 2009

    In addition to the acid-based theory of disease, a lot of woo is predicated on the idea that Mom (or Grandma) Knows Best — better than those fancy doctors or so-called experts with their book-leaning and high-falutin’ degrees. Thus, baking soda as cure for the common cold (and cancer!) fits neatly into both categories. It’s the sort of simple home remedy a mom would use — and science is struggling to catch up with her natural folk wisdom.

    Coming soon — cancer is caused by going swimming less than an hour after you’ve eaten.

  40. #40 Prometheus
    December 16, 2009

    When I read the comments of “Dr. Volney S. Cheney”:

    “it was brought to my attention that rarely any one who had been thoroughly alkalinized with bicarbonate of soda contracted the disease, and those who did contract it, if alkalinized early, would invariably have mild attacks.”

    I immediately was struck by two things.

    First was the eerie similarity to the plot of The Andromeda Strain (already noted above).

    Second was the thought that if someone was “thoroughly alkalinized”, they would be in a clinical state known – even today – to be highly resistant to viral infection.

    That “state” is, of course, the dead state. Dead people are known to be highly resistant to developing symptoms of influenza (especially fever).

    Prometheus

  41. #41 The Domestic Goddess
    December 16, 2009

    C’mon. Everyone knows CHUCK NORRIS cures cancer! Sheesh!

  42. #42 kidlacan
    December 16, 2009

    #14, kemist –

    DMSO is approved for veterinary use, either to carry other topical medications or on its own as an anti-inflammatory and analgesic. animal studies back in the ’60s conducted for purposes of human investigation were mixed, and i can’t find any online, but it’s fairly commonly used and prescribed by vets, and it’s commercially available in medical-grade.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/3510103
    http://www.elephantcare.org/Drugs/dimethyl.htm

  43. #43 redrabbitslife
    December 16, 2009

    The most cynical guy in my med school class had a “nutri-ceutical” business, and was only after the MD to add weight to his specious claims. He was all about what the letters after his name could do for his company.

    I was the idealistic evidence-based-medicine girl with the loud mouth, and I swear they used to put the two of us in the same group regularly just to watch the sparks fly.

  44. #44 dooflotchie
    December 16, 2009

    “And, make no mistake, quackery much of it is.”

    How come when I read this, I heard Yoda saying it?

  45. #45 Calli Arcale
    December 16, 2009

    The article contains the story of a guy named Vernon, who beat stage 4 prostate cancer by using baking soda and molasses.

    So the cure to everything is cookies? YAY!!!!

    Actually, if we’re supposed to be making our bodies more alkaline, maybe another Christmastime tradition ’round these parts would be appropriate. I’m of Scandinavian extraction, and for mysterious reasons, our immigrant farmer ancestors retained a passion for a particular food item long past the time that refrigeration had made it obsolete. It is widely eaten by Scandinavian-descended families at Christmastime around here (Minnesota). I am speaking, of course, of lutefisk.

    Oh lutefisk, ah lutefisk,
    How fragrant your aroma
    Oh lutefisk, ah lutefisk,
    Ya put me in a coma
    You smell so fine, you look like glue
    You taste yust like an overshoe
    Oh lutefisk, come Saturday,
    I tink I’ll eat you anyvay

  46. #46 Chris
    December 16, 2009

    (I still like lutefisk, really, I do… I am part Norwegian)

    The alkaline part of lutefisk is that it is fish cured with lye (you rinse it out before cooking, hopefully not down to glue). Here is an explanation on a Lutefisk Eating Contest. I usually like it with a nice white sauce and allspice (it really does not have much of a flavor).

  47. #47 Chris
    December 16, 2009

    Oh, Calli, I’ve given up trying to get my more Dutch/French Canadian kids to warm up to fattigman and sandbakkal cookies, so the only traditional cookie I am doing is rosettes. Because everything is better when it is deep fried, even if there is no baking soda.

  48. #48 Leslie
    December 17, 2009

    “…Much like dropping some concentrated sodium hydroxide to ‘alkalinize’ your skin would burn, actually…”

    …and much like using sodium hydroxide to straighten your hair to reduce the amount of discrimination you face burns your scalp, right?

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/01/05/AR2009010501864.html

    “…Hair relaxers generally fall into two categories: lye and no-lye. Lye relaxers contain sodium hydroxide, which is also used to make soap and strip paint. Most no-lye relaxers contain calcium hydroxide, which is also used to treat water and sewage, and guanidine carbonate, which is also used for hair removal…”

  49. #49 Kemist
    December 17, 2009

    Leslie

    eeeeouch !

    The only sodium hydroxide burn I got in my life was on my fingers. The skin kept shedding and shedding, until I was left with no fingerprints on the burned fingers for about a month. It taught me to be extra careful with bases. I just can’t think of the conequences of that stuff running in somebody’s eyes. Extreme pain and irreparable cornea damage, most probably.

    It bizarre for them to use such a harsh method. Curling or straightening hair is all about breaking and forming protein disulfide bonds. For that you need a reducer and a capping agent. There are tons of more gentle reducers than sodium hydroxide which work just as fine without killing your scalp’s skin.

  50. #50 Natalie
    December 17, 2009

    Kemist,

    The context of hair straightening is pretty important when considering why lye became a key ingredient. This is something that was largely practiced by uneducated, scientifically literate (through no fault of their own) people with access to limited resources.

    Historically, most hair straightening preparations were homemade. Lye was cheap and widely available (sold in grocery stores, I believe) and it’s possible that other reducers were hard or impossible to come by.

    Commercial preparations likely used lye because it was expected, by the time commercial preparations were available. The relative cost of lye may have also been a factor – this is a product heavily marketed to low income people.

  51. #51 Calli Arcale
    December 17, 2009

    Chris, the fattigman my mom makes is deep fried too, just like rosettes (although it frankly soaks up a lot more grease). Maybe you could try cooking them that way. ;-) Because you’re right: everything IS better deep fried! Except maybe a triple bypass. :-P

    I’m hoping to find the time to bake a kransekake this year. (Think giant, conical, almond macaroon.) I usually do. But events are coming fast and furious this year, so I’m not sure I’ll manage it. :-( My French blood wants me to make a bouche de noel, but if I don’t have time for kransekake, I probably don’t have time for that either.

  52. #52 military wife
    December 17, 2009

    In addition to the acid-based theory of disease, a lot of woo is predicated on the idea that Mom (or Grandma) Knows Best — better than those fancy doctors or so-called experts with their book-leaning and high-falutin’ degrees. Thus, baking soda as cure for the common cold (and cancer!) fits neatly into both categories. It’s the sort of simple home remedy a mom would use — and science is struggling to catch up with her natural folk wisdom.

    Coming soon — cancer is caused by going swimming less than an hour after you’ve eaten.

    Posted by: Sastra | December 16, 2009 6:33 PM

    Thank God my mom and grandma are into acid based cures, I guess. Hot tea with lemon and honey really do help make a sore throat feel better, and the heat and caffeine do help relieve a bit of congestion too. It tastes a lot better than baking soda too.

  53. #53 Chris
    December 17, 2009

    Calli Arcale:

    Chris, the fattigman my mom makes is deep fried too, just like rosettes (although it frankly soaks up a lot more grease). Maybe you could try cooking them that way. ;-)

    So is our family recipe. The kids just don’t like the cardamom. (aside: My daughter has a friend who lives in Norway, and she has never heard of any of these cookies!)

  54. #54 Denice Walter
    December 17, 2009

    If you google “alkaline and acid foods”,the first site you get is “energiseforlife.com”: according to their list- lemon,lime,grapefruit, and tomato are….. alkaline! (I have no idea how that get that categorization, but I have run across it previously in other woo-lit).

  55. #55 Dangerous Bacon
    December 17, 2009

    Supposedly the idea that citrus fruits (for example) are alkaline relates to the idea that they are metabolized in a way that results in a net alkaline product.

    The only way I know of that eating an “alkaline” diet might make sense, relates to the argument that consuming an overly acid diet results in excessive calcium leaching from bones and hence promotes osteoporosis. This remains an unproven theory and I’m not sure how eating things far less acid than gastric juices could significantly alter calcium homeostasis.

  56. #56 woofighter
    December 17, 2009

    What I find even more fascinating than Mercola is the people that follow him. I’ve been watching his facebook fan page (50,000+ “fans”)and the comments to his posts are hilarious and a little frightening. They scramble to find out the proper dose and the various other uses of whatever supplement or remedy he is recommending. My favorite was his post on capsaicin and diabetes in mice (12/4). Anyone here see it? (I’m having trouble finding the link on my phone – FB is blocked here!)

  57. #57 Leslie
    December 18, 2009

    “The only way I know of that eating an ‘alkaline’ diet might make sense, relates to the argument that consuming an overly acid diet results in excessive calcium leaching from bones and hence promotes osteoporosis. This remains an unproven theory and I’m not sure how eating things far less acid than gastric juices could significantly alter calcium homeostasis….”

    Also, the BART diet for temporary nausea and diarrhea discourages more-acidic and spicier foods in order to be very gentle to one’s throat and esophagus, but I’ve never been told to stay on that for more than a week or two.

  58. #58 Dr Aust
    December 18, 2009

    Aaaayyyyyyy…

    …it really is depressing how often this “alkalinize your body ” crap re-surfaces. As someone pointed out on an earlier Respectful Insolence thread (linked by Orac above – it’s the one about the King of “pH Woo”, Robert O Young) the only place where an “invading organism” was impeded by your blood pH was in the late Michael Crichton’s The Andromeda Strain.

    My own take on the amazing staying power of pH Woo in the Alt.Reality-verse is that it sells nicely; the reasons being:

    (i) lots of people have vaguely heard of pH; but

    (ii) very few of them understand it; and

    (iii) even fewer of them understand it in the context of the body (i.e. the physiology of pH).

    Result – an easy sell of all kinds of stuff you don’t need (plus, of course, The Fear) to the Worried Well.

  59. #59 Tony
    December 19, 2009

    I’ve read the above mentioned mercola article, and a number of his other articles. It’s too late at night and i really couldn’t be stuffed going back to it right now, but my recollection is that he didn’t at all promote bicarb soda as a remedy to cancer, just notified that others have done so. In regards to H1N1, I think his concept is that trying the old fashioned home remedy is a safer option than tamiflu and vaccination. I totally agree. An untested vaccination will not be given to me, my wife or my three kids because I, like many people don’t trust big pharma.
    My understanding of mercola is that he generally promotes a healthy lifestyle with organic food and exercise, with a few suggested enhancements (krill oil, probiotics – all valid and well tested to be beneficial). From about 10 articles regarding H1N1,the things he promotes to avoid issues is sunlight (vitamin D) and good diet. I guess we’ll see who comes out better off in the end – Doubting I’ll see any sign of Flu. I haven’t so far in 34 years of life.
    On a final thought what is the subscription numbers for this blog compared to Mercolas? just wondering if a positive outlook on life is more or less popular than the apparently sarcastic and critical outlook of Orac.

  60. #60 Orac
    December 19, 2009

    Mercola promotes rank quackery in many instances, the above included. This is not the first article he’s written shilling for Tullio Simoncini, who is about as obvious a quack as you can possibly imagine, given that he thinks that tumors are caused by a fungus because, according to him, tumors are white and fungi are white. He also thinks bicarb is a cure for cancer.

    Perhaps Mercola will take the disingenuous “Oprah” defense and claim that he’s just “providing information” to allow readers to “decide for themselves.”

  61. #61 Perky Skeptic
    December 19, 2009

    I love Simonicini’s argument:

    Tumors = white
    Fungal hyphae = white
    Therefore, TUMORS = FUNGUS, OMGQED!!!!!!eleventy1!!!

    Wait a minute….

    Coffee = brown
    Poop = brown
    Therefore, Coffee = Poop….. could THIS be the clearly-infallible logic that lead someone to believe COFFEE ENEMAS were a good idea???

  62. #62 T. Bruce McNeely
    December 19, 2009

    Tony:

    (Mercola) didn’t at all promote bicarb soda as a remedy to cancer, just notified that others have done so.

    Why would he do that, other than to point and laugh?

    An untested vaccination will not be given to me, my wife or my three kids because I, like many people don’t trust big pharma.

    - because YOU don’t trust big pharma? Does your wife have any part in this decision?

    On a final thought what is the subscription numbers for this blog compared to Mercolas? just wondering if (BS) is more or less popular than the apparently sarcastic and critical (and scientific) outlook of Orac.

    Fixed that for you.

  63. #63 Beatis
    December 19, 2009

    “…Isn’t Mercola the quack that promotes Hamer’s Germanic New Medicine on Youtube?…”
    He is.

  64. #64 woofighter
    December 19, 2009

    Tony:
    You think Mercola is POSITIVE? You’re kidding, right? He uses fear and mockery of traditional medicine. Warns you about formula increasing your child’s risk of death, fluoride in the drinking water lowering your IQ. Those are just 2 that immediately come to mind. He suggests that capsaicin from chili peppers can cure diabetes, then remains silent as his followers clamor for a dose of chili peppers to eat (the article he vaguely refers to reports the scientists INJECTED the capsaicin into the nerves around the pancreas of the lab mice). He also SELLS many of the products he recommends – while at the same time accusing allopathic physicians and “Big Pharma” from having financial conflicts of interest. On what planet is snide, incorrect, overly simplistic and hypocritical medical advice “positive”?

  65. #65 Nightshadequeen
    December 20, 2009

    Tony,

    You do know that the H1N1 virus is fundamentally no different from your typical flu virus: it just contains a different strain of virus?

  66. #66 joe
    March 18, 2010

    so , how much sodium bicarb, per dose per person?

  67. #67 Madeline
    May 18, 2010

    I have cervical cancer. If you’ve never had cancer then you are not really interested in finding a cure. After consulting with Dr. Simoncini, I douched with baking soda once a week for three months. In that time frame I also did 5 weeks of a low dosage of cisplatin chemo, once a week along with 25 days of radiation. The Dr. wanted me to have 6 treatments of breakie therapy, which is the most barbaric treatment of them all. I had one treatment. The Dr. discovered when they went inside of my cervix/uterus and inserted the 8″ metal rod to radiate my organs, that the cancer had CONPLETELY DISAPEARED. The Dr. called a meeting with my entire family and we were told that NEVER IN HIS 20 YRS. OF PRATICE, with the exception of one other case, in which the woman died of a massive heart attack, did he ever see CANCER DISAPEAR IN SUCH A SHORT PERIOD OF TIME. HE CALLED ME A “TEXT BOOK CASE”. He also stated that if I would have any other Dr. examine me that would swear that I NEVER EVEN HAD CANCER. So, go ahead and think what you want. But, my advise to you is IF you ever get cancer, RUN to Dr. Simoncini’s office for help.

    THIS WEBSITE IS FOR THE BLIND LEADING THE BLIND! NOT FOR THOSE WHO ARE SICK AND TIRED OF BEING DECIVED BECAUSE OF THE GREED THE FDA AND OUR GOVERNMENT HAS IN SURPRESSING THIS VITAL INFORMATION. CHEMOTHEARPY IS A TRILLION DOLLAR A YEAR BUSINESS PEOPLE, WAKE UP. THEY ARE LOVING THE FACT THAT SO MANY WON’T LOOK FOR AN ALTERNATIVE! HOW IGNORANT ARE YOU?

    Madeline
    Florida

  68. #68 Madeline
    May 18, 2010

    I have cervical cancer. If you’ve never had cancer then you are not really interested in finding a cure. After consulting with Dr. Simoncini, I douched with baking soda once a week for three months. In that time frame I also did 5 weeks of a low dosage of cisplatin chemo, once a week along with 25 days of radiation. The Dr. wanted me to have 6 treatments of breakie therapy, which is the most barbaric treatment of them all. I had one treatment. The Dr. discovered when they went inside of my cervix/uterus and inserted the 8″ metal rod to radiate my organs, that the cancer had CONPLETELY DISAPEARED. The Dr. called a meeting with my entire family and we were told that NEVER IN HIS 20 YRS. OF PRATICE, with the exception of one other case, in which the woman died of a massive heart attack, did he ever see CANCER DISAPEAR IN SUCH A SHORT PERIOD OF TIME. HE CALLED ME A “TEXT BOOK CASE”. He also stated that if I would have any other Dr. examine me that would swear that I NEVER EVEN HAD CANCER. So, go ahead and think what you want. But, my advise to you is IF you ever get cancer, RUN to Dr. Simoncini’s office for help.

    THIS WEBSITE IS FOR THE BLIND LEADING THE BLIND! NOT FOR THOSE WHO ARE SICK AND TIRED OF BEING DECEIVED BECAUSE OF THE GREED THE FDA AND OUR GOVERNMENT HAS IN SURPRESSING THIS VITAL INFORMATION. CHEMOTHEARPY IS A TRILLION DOLLAR A YEAR BUSINESS PEOPLE, WAKE UP. THEY ARE LOVING THE FACT THAT SO MANY WON’T LOOK FOR AN ALTERNATIVE! HOW IGNORANT ARE YOU?

    Madeline
    Florida

  69. #69 Vicki
    May 18, 2010

    Madeline–

    That you no longer have cancer is great. But don’t assume that only current and past cancer patients care about a cure: lots of other people care, if only because their relatives or friends are in that boat.

    From what you say, you had three treatments more or less simultaneously: radiation, cisplatin, and baking soda. It’s possible that any of the three cured you, or some combination. There’s not enough here to determine which. Or you may have had a spontaneous remission: they do happen.

    Also, given what your doctor said, you might want to check with a cardiologist and see how your heart is and whether there are any precautions you should be taking. It’s likely that the other patient’s heart attack was unrelated, but it’s also possible that whatever got rid of her cancer is also what cured yours, and stresses the heart as a side effect. (An EKG is completely painless; I found a “stress test” not difficult; and 81 mg/day of aspirin is well tolerated by most people, if it turns out you need that.)

  70. #70 Madeline
    May 18, 2010

    My Doctors have been treating multiply patients with the exact same dosage/treatments that they were given me with the exception of the dosage being according to your weight/height. I recently sat next to a woman named Bobbie, who’s cancer started where mine started, in the cervix. She had the exact same treatments with the exception of the baking soda and is now on her third phase, she had the 5 weeks of chemo/radiation and endured the 6 treatments of the unGodly breakie therapy and is still getting more chemo/radiaion today because the cancer has spread into her lympnoids just below her collar bone. When I told her what happened with me, she said she wished she had known. Like I said, the Dr. is the one who couldn’t believe it had totally disapeared. He is the one who said I was a Text Book Case. I don’t think it had anything to do with his treatments. I truly believe the baking soda did the trick. Chemo has been known to cause heart attacks. Chemo/radiation treatments are so stressful. I know that if I would have continued and did all 6 of the breakie treatments I probably wouln’t be here to talk about it. Bobbie almost cried when I mentioned how painful they were. They do that proceedure while your awake. It is like giving birth with no pain meds. Twice a week for 3 weeks…no thank you! It’s truly barbaric and it didn’t work for Bobbie, nor did the chemo/radiation.
    Madeline

  71. #71 Al
    May 19, 2010

    I was almost coming to the conclusion that birds of a feather really do stick together. It IS mostly true, and is demonstrated by the number of posts siding with the author’s viewpoint about quacks. I had to skim over the last half because of time (I’m still at work). But seeing the last post by Madeline (because it is still on the screen as I reply) I see there are a few ducks in with the chickens.

    Quacks?? No doubt they abound. Stupid and ignorant? No doubt many are. Arrogant and narrow-minded? No doubt many so-called “scientists” and “physicians” are. I’ve been a patient and colleague of quite a few. You see, when you or a friend has had an experience that goes against conventional wisdom, because of the smaller numbers, it is labeled “anecdotal” which has become synonymous with “probably not true”.

    I have had success with “alternative” treatments for Rheumatoid Arthritis… not your typical success story in standard medicine’s anals — oops, I meant annals.

    I would be willing to bet that most of the naysayers (blog author included) have never really worked with people who are using alternative methods or tried any themselves.

    So please, disagree with non-mainstream alternative health treatments, if you wish, but leave off the arrogance. It leads to pretending you know things that you do not.

  72. #72 Chris
    May 19, 2010

    The plural of anecdote is anecdotes, not data.

  73. #73 Al
    May 19, 2010

    Hmm? I came back to add one comment and see that the last poster may need glasses. Anecdotal (ending with the letter “l” pronounced “el”)is a word. It wasn’t anecdota!, which is obviously how the poster read it. Look more closely. (By the way, that’s the type of arrogance I’m talking about. I’ve seen intelligent posts by people that contain typos and realize that typos happen — just not in this case.)

    Now, I’ve forgotten what I was going to add. Oh well, it will come to me… or maybe it wasn’t that important in the second place. ;)

  74. #74 Scott
    May 19, 2010

    The point is that piling up several anecdotes on top of each other doesn’t serve as credible scientific data. Which it doesn’t.

    You see, when you or a friend has had an experience that goes against conventional wisdom, because of the smaller numbers, it is labeled “anecdotal” which has become synonymous with “probably not true”.

    “Anecdotal” is NOT considered synonymous with “probably not true.” It is considered synonymous with “not reliable evidence of truth.” And very correctly so.

    I would be willing to bet that most of the naysayers (blog author included) have never really worked with people who are using alternative methods or tried any themselves.

    You would lose that bet.

    So please, disagree with non-mainstream alternative health treatments, if you wish, but leave off the arrogance. It leads to pretending you know things that you do not.

    Very ironic, given that all of alternative medicine is nothing more than pretending to know things at, at best, they do not. In many cases, it’s pretending to know things that are demonstrably false.

  75. #75 Chris
    May 19, 2010

    Al, your little story is an anecdote, and is not data.

    I would dare say that you trying to redefine words is very arrogant. But, perhaps that is because you are not familiar with this blog or how science actually works.

    But that is neither here nor there. What you can really tell me is why you found imperative to comment on a five month old blog entry? Why not on the more recent entries like Knowledge versus certainty in skepticism, medicine, and science that Orac posted last Friday, or Dichloroacetate (DCA) and cancer: Déjà vu all over again that was posted on Monday?

  76. #76 Chris
    May 19, 2010

    Al:

    I would be willing to bet that most of the naysayers (blog author included) have never really worked with people who are using alternative methods or tried any themselves.

    Orac is a practicing surgical oncologist, specializing in breast cancer. Earlier this month he re-posted a pair of articles on The Deadly Power of Denial. Read both articles. Also read his classic article The Orange Man.

    Also, “trying it yourself” is just doing an experiment with an N=1. Essentially worthless. Especially when there is no scientific reason for the “alternative” to work.

    Also, a wee bit of advice that some of us have garnered since the days of Usenet. When you go to a forum, blog or newsgroup lurk for a while. Read previous posts, and get a feel about how people relate. Learn what kind of discourse and evidence is commonly used. It is very important that you actually learn about the owner of the blog and/or forum. That way, you would not make arrogant and erroneous pronouncements on what he has or has not done.

  77. #77 Al
    May 20, 2010

    To Chris and Scott (and other readers):

    I apologize if my posts seemed arrogant and/or ignorant. But please ackknowledge that many of the comments posted at the end of Orac’s blog/article could have easily used a “snickering” emoticon. (Ex.: My homemade buttermilk pancakes have baking soda in them, and I have yet to contract H1N1. Coincidence?) I do not want to impugn Orac’s character, knowledge, or reputation.

    Chris, you ask why do I comment on a 5-month old blog? I had no time to lurk. My wife is battling colon cancer as we speak. I had been sent info. about Dr. Simoncini from a well-meaning friend. I DO know how science works. I work in a university research group that develops Mass. Spec. instrumentation for Proteomic research and also conducts Proteomic research. So instead of taking his (Simoncini’s) story at face value I decided to do some “research”. Orac’s blog is one of the articles I came across in my search. I started not to even post but it was the tone of the article and many comments that prompted me to. I also found a paper entitled: “Bicarbonate Increases Tumor pH and Inhibits Spontaneous Metastases”.

    http://cancerres.aacrjournals.org/cgi/content/abstract/69/6/2260

    The authors expressed “concerns” but the conclusion: Notwithstanding these concerns, however, the dramatic effect of bicarbonate therapy on the formation of breast cancer metastases in this model system warrants further investigation.

    I agreed in my original post that there is a lot of nonsense associated with “alternative” medicine. I don’t like seeing people mislead either. So there should be no debate there.

    Having read the referred to “Orange Man” I concur. When it comes to cancer “ineffective alternative therapies” have stark consequences. But “real” clinical trials of many “so-called” alternative and “natural” therapies is very lacking and in many cases non-existent. That is not the fault of the public looking for alternatives. I wish there was good, solid and fair research on every kind of treatment. And even when some are done they may be designed to fail from the start – not intentionally but due to lack of awareness sometimes. Vitamin C trials are, IMO, one such example. So far I haven’t read any disparaging remarks about Dr. Thomas Levy – and maybe I just haven’t found them yet. But his book about Vitamin C (“Curing the Incurable”) recounting Dr. Fred Klenner’s work describes the deficiencies in many Vitamin C research trials. Dr. Levy does take the time and trouble to cite research that more closely follows Dr. Kenner’s protocol.

    I don’t know the HTML tag for placing a quote, so I’ll just italicize: Chris, you said, Also, ‘trying it yourself’ is just doing an experiment with an N=1. Essentially worthless. Especially when there is no scientific reason for the alternative to work. And you also referred to your little story. Do you think that is going to elicit a friendly response? In my case, or “little story” as you refer to it. There was good scientific basis for my alternative therapy to work for my RA. And as it so happened it did.

    The point I was trying to make is that there IS dogma in orthodox medicine. How long were ulcers treated as being caused by too much acid? Not all “alternative” medicine theories fit the current scientific understanding. Can you prove that they are wrong? Or are you willing to say, maybe some things work and we just don’t understand how yet? That’s all I’m looking for is a little willingness to admit that none of us knows everything. Modern Physics does allow for some pretty “magical” hypotheses. Probably few, if any, will proven – or DISPROVEN – in my or yours lifetime.

    I couldn’t help note the following statement made in Orac’s article, “Knowledge versus certainty in skepticism, medicine, and science”:

    Quote: On a strictly anecdotal level, I’ve seen this time and time again in the alt-med movement. A particularly good example is homeopathy. How many times have we seen homeopaths, when confronted with scientific evidence finding that their magic water is no more effective at anything than a placebo, claiming that their magic can’t be evaluated by randomized, double-blind clinical trials (RCTs).

    So, anecdotal may not be data but it CAN be relevant and true, just not proven yet.

    I have literally run out of time to write anymore. I am about to leave work to get some things for my wife.

    Science can be VERY good when it doesn’t become dogmatic.

    My best wishes to Orac, and you Chris and Scott… and all here. I would love to come back in the future and report that something “alternative” worked for my wife. We’ll see.

  78. #78 Chris
    May 20, 2010

    Good luck to you and your wife.

  79. #79 Gayle Bacon
    July 2, 2010

    I read the lead article and am perplexed. This is such a complicated subject and to trash anything but the prescribed Western medicine ideas is beyond ignorant. People are individuals and one method for all is ludicrous. When speaking of baking soda, it sounds like snake oil for sure, yet we’re talking body chemistry. I don’t know that baking soda can turn cancer cells into healthy cells, since they are damaged, but baking soda’s function is to balance a system that has become too acidic. As we age, we become more acidic and are more prone to diseases as it has been proven that bacteria thrive in an acidic environment and die in an alkaline environment. Can oxygen be pumped into cells? I’m sure it can. When we exercise we become more alkaline and many symptoms of allergies disappear, and immune systems function better, unless we’re already sick. This prevents disease. So by calling it woo medicine and quackery, you are putting out a blanket indictment on baking soda. Vinegar on a sunburn helps because it’s acidic. The skin needs to be more acidic, but inside we need to be more alkaline to be balanced. It’s all about balance. If we’re balanced, we can have a stronger immune system and fight off anything.

  80. #80 JohnV
    July 2, 2010

    “it has been proven that bacteria thrive in an acidic environment and die in an alkaline environment.”

    Putting on my microbiologist hat, let me say that this is a profoundly ignorant and uneducated statement.

    Burkholderia thailandensis, for example, does not tolerate acid environments. When grown in media with glucose without glycerol or buffer, the pH rapidly approaches ~4, the OD600 doesn’t get above 3 and after 2 days, it is very difficult to isolate viable cells. When grown in the presence of glycerol, the pH remains ~7, the OD600 rises above 20 (but it quits correlating to increasing cells at ~6) and viable cells can be isolated for over 7 days. (JohnV, unpublished results, 2008)

    Speaking of balance, there’s some science to balance your woo.

  81. #81 Vicki
    July 2, 2010

    It doesn’t take Gayle long to jump from “individuals are individuals and one method for all is ludicrous” to generalizing about not merely all individual humans, but all species of bacteria. Which is about like making an announcement about “animals,” as if humans, fish, dragonflies, and sponges all needed the same environment.

    A “stronger immune system” is far from the whole answer. Not only are there limits to the human immune system, but sometimes strength is the problem. It seems likely that the reason H1N1 disproportionately affected younger people (now, and especially in the 1919 epidemic) is because a strong immune response to the virus harmed people. (Autoimmune disorders are nontrivial in general, but not particularly relevant here, I think.)

  82. #82 Donald J. Porter
    July 12, 2010

    I BEAT Stage IV metasicized prostate cancer (diag. 4-07)I utilized a Kushi/Varanoa Macrobiotic diet to build immune system- then used Baking soda molases/maple syrup. NO CHEMO or radiation My PSA has been 0.1 for 10 mos It was 39.6 @ diadnosis with 3+ years to live Cancer ALL GONE.
    We are the sickest country in the world – WHY ?
    We spend more for healthcare that almost all other combined WHY ?
    Everything is polluted & not a word from the deadliest Ind in human history! Sickened-maimed-killed hundreds of millions & some self serving parasitic scum defend the American sickness ind – Drug cos-Drs- AMA etal

  83. #83 Scott
    July 12, 2010

    BEAT Stage IV metasicized prostate cancer (diag. 4-07)I utilized a Kushi/Varanoa Macrobiotic diet to build immune system- then used Baking soda molases/maple syrup. NO CHEMO or radiation My PSA has been 0.1 for 10 mos It was 39.6 @ diadnosis with 3+ years to live Cancer ALL GONE.

    Evidence please.

    We are the sickest country in the world – WHY ?

    Evidence please.

    We spend more for healthcare that almost all other combined WHY ?

    Explanation of relevance please.

    Everything is polluted & not a word from the deadliest Ind in human history! Sickened-maimed-killed hundreds of millions & some self serving parasitic scum defend the American sickness ind – Drug cos-Drs- AMA etal

    Rant-to-English translation please.

  84. #84 Lee Miles
    September 15, 2010

    The argument for and against ph as a way to control cancer just has not been thoughtly tested. One must conclude as I do that simply said “if this protocol truly works the hospitals, phamasutical companies and doctors would take a large hit in income”. This is frequently the allegations of all of us that believe that there is a good reason to believe that this protocol works.

    I have a t4 n1 diagnosis and have had maximum external beam radiation (79.2 rads), am on Lupron ( 4 rounds of 3 month injections ) and have done three rounds of baking soda / molasses. For those unfamiliar we are talking prostate cancer gleason 9 and has spread to external bladder.

    My PSA has dropped from 11, 3.2, .2, .1 and most recently less then .1, which is considered to be undetectable. So what is working for me is unclear but the extra step with the baking soda and diet might be the key. Simply said: my oncologist, radiologist and I don’t know.

    What is clear is that this subject is worthy of a pure scientific study since there simply is no money in baking soda; ph as a way to control or cure cancer. I have always believed that if you follow the money many times you find the answer. Cancer treatment not cancer cure is big business. Even Drs that believe it is an additional form of treatment / cure are scared to promote this for fear of ridicule and sanctions.

    It is time for truly independent assessment of this subject with and by scientists that don’t have their hand on my insurance companies wallet or mine.

    Therefore my simple advise is if you find yourself told, as I was to expect to live 24 – 30 months on average, that you consider adding baking soda and diet modification to existing medical therapies. So far things look better then predicted but only time will tell if I will survive this. Win or lose my battle I will shout out the results. One result doesn’t make a study!

    Anyone that is or has used baking soda and wishes to communicate their experiences can email me with good or bad news. Email leedavidmiles@gmail.com

    As for those of you that are not afflicted, yet, why don’t you let those of us who have our lives on the line currently express our point of view and experience since you don’t know what it’s like to be in this situation. The fact is that if baking soda doesn’t work it won’t be the thing that kills me.

    We need more people like myself to come forward and say, before they die “it did not work for me” or “it saved my life”.

  85. #85 Rod G
    July 8, 2011

    Interesting discussion, so I ask that IF in fact PLANTS either survive or don’t on the pH of the soil they are growing in, why is it not the same for humans? For instance, an acid soil will kill some plants, and others need it to survive. So if our body acidity is wrong because of whatever factors (and WHAT changes that but the food and water we ingest?) then why would the wrong acidity level NOT affect our health? Please explain.
    Thanks, Rod

  86. #86 Beamup
    July 8, 2011

    Threadomancy is very bad form.

    But the answer to your question is that the human body is able to control its own pH very, very, precisely. It simply does not happen (barring certain special and well-understood cases having nothing to do with this subject) that “our body acidity is wrong.” Measure the pH of (for instance) blood, and you’ll find that it just doesn’t vary the way the fraudsters claim.

    A plant cannot similarly control the pH of the soil in which it is growing (scale alone would make it impossible, though there are other reasons too).

    There isn’t much similarity at all between the situations.

  87. #87 Krebiozen
    July 8, 2011

    Simpler answer – plants don’t have kidneys or lungs.

  88. #88 Beamup
    July 8, 2011

    Although the connection from there to Rod’s question isn’t necessarily obvious without the additional observation that the body uses the kidneys and lungs to control its own pH.

  89. #89 Rick
    October 20, 2011

    If there was a cure for cancer to fall on the planet on 10/21/2011, all cancer related research would become irrelevant. All cancer related professionals (oncologists, radiologists, pharmicutical CEO’s, and their office administrtors, and secretaries would need to go out and find a job. The “War on Cancer” is a big buisiness. The medical establishment will never allow the war on cancer to alter their income or lifestyles. There will never be a cure, only more, and more expensive treatments !!!!!!!!!!!

  90. #90 Narad
    October 20, 2011

    Hey, “Rick,” have you met “David”?

  91. #91 Prometheus
    October 20, 2011

    Rick the Necromancer (#89) claims:

    “If there was a cure for cancer to fall on the planet on 10/21/2011, all cancer related research would become irrelevant.”

    Of course, since “cancer” isn’t a single disorder, “a” cure for cancer is about as unlikely as said “cure” falling on the planet tomorrow.

    “The “War on Cancer” is a big buisiness [sic].”

    Perhaps. Certainly, the “Cure for all Cancer” industry is big business. And let me ask, just for the record: which “business” makes more money – one that has to produce extensive animal and human research showing that their product works and is safe or the one that packages inexpensive “herbs”, vitamins and “minerals” (not to mention overpriced sugar pills and water labeled “homeopathic”) and sells them at tremendous markup?

    “There will never be a cure, only more, and more expensive treatments !!!!!!!!!!!”

    As I mentioned above, “a” cure for cancer is exceedingly unlikely because cancer isn’t a single disorder. In that sense, “Rick” is correct: there will never be “a” cure for all cancers. On the other hand, we’ve already got a number of treatments that are effective for specific cancers, some of which are even “curable”.

    So, “Rick” seems to say that, since we’ll never have a single treatment that will be 100% curative for all cancers, we should just give up and send our money to bullshit artists.

    Is that what you meant to say, Rick?

    Prometheus

  92. #92 LW
    October 20, 2011

    Rick, like so many others, you don’t seem to understand that there are a lot of countries in this world outside the U.S. and even outside Europe. Most of them do not like America or Europe. They have no incentive to suppress cancer cures so that oncologists, radiologists, pharmaceutical CEOs and their employees can continue to remain employed. Indeed, they have every motive to present such cures themselves so that they could not only take care of their own people without sending their hard currency to America or Europe, but also receive hard currency from desperate cancer patients worldwide. You may object that many of these countries are very poor, and they are, but some (OPEC countries) could easily afford to fund such research. Do you really think Saudi Arabia is deterred from developing a cancer cure by the medical establishment?

    Even within the U.S. and Europe, who pays for medical treatment? Usually either insurance companies or governments, neither of whom are generally accused of refusing to pay for less expensive treatment and forcing patients to accept more expensive treatments.

    Paranoia doesn’t stand up well to the most elementary knowledge of the world.

  93. #93 Hey
    November 13, 2011

    Apparently you have never heard of Edgar Cayce. Do a bit of research, and you’ll find that there are many homeopathic remedies that do indeed cure. I’d also suggest you drop your egotistical, know-it-all attitude.

  94. #94 Renate
    November 13, 2011

    Homeopathic remedies that really cure?
    Tell me all about it and provide good evidence with it.

    Edgar Cayce was a sightseeer, not really someone I would turn to if I had a serious disease.

  95. #95 Narad
    November 13, 2011

    Apparently you have never heard of Edgar Cayce. Do a bit of research, and you’ll find that there are many homeopathic remedies that do indeed cure.

    Since you’ve surely done your research, why not just drop your egotistical, know-it-all attitude and provide some of this Cayce-related homeopathic proof?

  96. #96 JED
    May 10, 2012

    I have never posted a comment before on ANY site! However, after reading 95 comments on this one, I think it is time to bring it to a close. Both sides are egotistical.
    Science cannot get its head out of the test tube and homeopaths cannot get their heads out of the herbs. When will you ever learn that there is a place for both of you.

    Well before ‘modern’ scientific ‘experimentation’, men and women lived with herbal medicine and other ‘natural’ folklore for thousands of years. The Chinese seem, by their present numbers, to have done very well on it!
    Get the message,….we are born to die!….all we can hope for is that we can live as comfortably as possible and die as comfortable as possible.
    When I was a child, I had an ailment that the doctor could not cure. In desperation, my mother took me to an ‘old Indian herbalist’. Three weeks later, I was cured of the malady. Many called him a ‘witch doctor’,…but who cares,…his herbs worked when nothing else did.
    At 50 I was diagnosed with a Thyroid complaint and sent to one of our Country’s top Endocrinologists (a Prof.), put on medication, and immediately began to swell. I gained 25kg., was never well, and constantly suffered from low body temp., headaches, low self esteem because of the weight, and heart palpitations. Many many other drugs were offered to counteract the effects of the medication, which I was told I would have to take for life…or die! After eleven years of this, I decided that I was happy to ‘risk death’ just to get off the medication.
    After much searching, including the Mercola site, I found a doctor (a rare breed) who combines many ‘alternatives’ with his Medical knowledge.
    He did something that no one else had ever done. He actually began by asking me about my lifestyle. Did I sleep, did I have to cope with a lot of stress, did I exercise, what did I eat and drink, did I take suppliments,
    use massage or acupuncture etc. Usually, you present with a condition and you walk out with a pill. Not with this fellow. So the first thing was to make ME aware of what I might be doing to aggrevate my problem. The second was to try me on a Natural alternative to the drug.
    This he monitors very closely.
    Now, in my late 60′s, I feel better than at 50. I don’t take any drugs,…control my Thyroid condition with ‘herbs’,..if you like,…have lost 10kg in the last year, and the ‘marble’ in my throat from the goiter has completely gone. I’ve lost 2 inches from around my neck, alone.
    I add my story for one reason.
    There is plenty of ‘quackery’ on both sides. Mercola is ‘extreme’ perhaps, but a lot of what he says has value.
    Modern Medical Science is still young. I have medical books written by my Gt.Grandfather, a prestigious Medical Doctor, in 1906. He states that ‘little is known about the role of the Thyroid Gland….’
    His books also contain many of his ‘recipes’ for ‘Modern’ medicine,…and they are mostly ‘herbal’ by today’s standards. Bi-carbonate of Soda is only recommended for the soothing of burns! Cancer, he states is ‘unknown’ amongst people who do not eat meat!!
    During my ‘long’ life, particularly as a mother and grandmother, I have often used ‘natural’ cures,…honey for stings, tea tree and lavendar and euchalyptus oils for hives, killing germs etc. Silver for sore throats, Kefir for maintaining gut bacteria and coconut oil, milk etc. for good skin and general wellbeing. I am married to a Celiac and have three other Celiacs in the family. We all eat GF!
    It’s easier and healthier.
    None of us have high blood pressure, gout, cholesterol problems, heart disease, etc., though we have been dished out some pretty awful genes.
    Nearly all of these things are promoted by Mercola. This is the ‘Good’,….accept that and stop maintaining that your system is better….you simply ‘bury’ your mistakes.

    In short,….if you are REALLY interested in helping people have a better life,…join him on fighting the smoking lobby, join him in trying to get people off sugar, coke, illicit drugs etc. Find the stuff you can unite on, and start pulling together. Remember, Vit. C, Vit. E, Fish oil, Vit.B, Antioxidants etc. were promoted for years and years by Naturapaths, and the drug Co’s tried to stop it. Research now done they say, and we now find all of those things and more on our Chemist’s shelves, sold and promoted by, guess who????
    The final choice is up to the individual, but from my point of view, I wish there were a LOT more doctors out there like the one I have finally found. If he can ‘cure’ it ‘naturally’, he does, but he keeps his prescription pad handy too.

  97. #97 Narad
    May 11, 2012

    I have never posted a comment before on ANY site!

    You certainly made a niche choice with which to break the streak.

  98. #98 JED
    May 12, 2012

    You might call it niche choice, but it shouldn’t be.
    Most people do not care if something has gone thru 20 years of trials. I once asked a doctor (another professor!), whether the figures in the study he was quoting me included smokers, people under 30 or over 60, and he didn’t know.
    You see, when you have sat behind a mahogony desk for long enough, listening to people’s problems, you become insensitive. You believe that they don’t really have brains enough to discern. Being over 60, and nothing but ‘housewife’ in front of my name these days, believe me, I know what it’s like to be treated as though I have dementia. Doctors need to sharpen up their act.
    Most of us are pretty well educated in one way or another, even ‘oldies’, and though we might sit there and say little, we just might be thinking how stupid and arrogant their comments are.
    As far as their ‘scientific’drugs go, there are some of us who do not do very well on them at all. BUT, they continue to push them down our throats, no matter how ill we might feel.
    When we do not improve, then the trick these days is to add an antidepressant. No wonder people commit suicide!

    Why also, are they so defensive? Could it be because people are looking for alternatives because they cannot find the help they need within the ‘profession’?
    That was certainly my reason for scouring the net and researching the libraries.
    Anyone with half a brain would get Mercola’s overall message – eat healthy, exercise regularly and avoid chemicals and polutants where you can.
    I diced a GP and two specialists, AND their medications, because if nothing else, I had learned (mainly from Mercola)that there just might be another way.
    Had I not done that, after suffering many years of health issues, I don’t think I would be writing this .

    I hope that some poor sod out there who has been threatened and ‘locked’ into the system will realise that you have to take responsibility for your own health. You won’t find all the answers on either side of this debate. But remember this, – no matter what science might offer these days, humans were here first, and we did very well on game meat and grass, exercise and herbs and clean water.
    Let’s keep pushing for reform. Doctor’s should be there to help people achieve the best health possible. That just might take a bit of time and effort on their part.
    Something, it seems has been lost with the ease of the prescription pad!

  99. #99 Antaeus Feldspar
    May 12, 2012

    Most people do not care if something has gone thru 20 years of trials.

    Most people also don’t understand why patient testimonials are crappy evidence. Appeal to popularity (“most people do not care…”) is not a very convincing argument.

    You see, when you have sat behind a mahogony desk for long enough, listening to people’s problems, you become insensitive. You believe that they don’t really have brains enough to discern.

    Even if your stereotyping of experienced doctors was true, that they in turn stereotype older people, your casual verb “discern” covers a huge amount. What you are complaining about is really the fact that people who have been through med school and make their living by practicing medicine think they know more about medicine than people whose primary involvement with medicine is seeking it. It may shock you, but most people would consider that belief pretty likely to be correct.

    Anyone with half a brain would get Mercola’s overall message – eat healthy, exercise regularly and avoid chemicals and polutants where you can.

    Any idiot out there in the world can be defended simply by blurring their position until the idiocies are no longer visible and calling the result the “overall message.” Every dictator who scapegoated a minority and said “we must drive these unclean rabble from our beautiful nation!” – well, do they deserve acclamation because their “overall message” was “let’s make our nation safe and beautiful”? Or do they deserve criticism because their methods of trying to achieve that goal were bigoted, cruel and stupid? The “overall message” of “protect yourself from swine flu”? Great! Wonderful! The detailed message of “protect yourself with baking soda and actively eschew the protection of vaccines”? Stupid!

    But remember this, – no matter what science might offer these days, humans were here first, and we did very well on game meat and grass, exercise and herbs and clean water.

    If by “did very well” you mean “had extremely short life expectancy and frequently died from diseases that would have been easily cured had they simply known how.” Anyone who claims the past was a wonderful “natural” paradise has swallowed a huge load of crap. Go to an old cemetery sometime and count the tiny tombstones of the children who never made it to five and then tell us “we did very well” like that.

  100. #100 lilady
    May 12, 2012

    “I have never posted a comment before on ANY site! However, after reading 95 comments on this one, I think it is time to bring it to a close. Both sides are egotistical.
    Science cannot get its head out of the test tube and homeopaths cannot get their heads out of the herbs. When will you ever learn that there is a place for both of you.”

    Er JED, This thread was closed 6 months ago…until you decided to make your debut on the internet.

    You seem to think that homeopaths have a similar footing within the science community. I hate to disabuse you…but they don’t; they are treated as the quacks they are.

    I really doubt that any physician diagnosed you with “a thyroid complaint”…so the rest of your “story” based on this nebulous “thyroid complaint” is quite suspect.

    “Being over 60, and nothing but ‘housewife’ in front of my name these days, believe me, I know what it’s like to be treated as though I have dementia. Doctors need to sharpen up their act.”

    And,

    “Most of us are pretty well educated in one way or another, even ‘oldies’, and though we might sit there and say little, we just might be thinking how stupid and arrogant their comments are.”

    Well I’m over 60 and I am not treated by doctors “as though I have dementia”. I’m also an “oldie” and if you are claiming that “oldies” are not given respect, you are sadly mistaken.

    BTW, within my large peer group…I know of no one who is on an antidepressant. Perhaps you need to find a new group of friends.

  101. #101 Agashem
    May 12, 2012

    Lilady, as always, you say exactly what needs to be said. And for JED how long before so-called ‘alternative’ doctors become jaded from sitting behind a desk (mahogany or otherwise)? If you think never then clearly you have not dealt with the parade of humanity that those of us in the health care field have dealt with.

  102. #102 Denice Walter
    May 12, 2012

    I can’t let JED’s assertions about anti-depressants go un-challenged- for a few reasons, my studies, work and the people I know, including family members, my ex and friends who suffer from depression. People struggle against this condition.

    Those who disparage SBM often use SSRIs as a prime example ( chemotherapy is another) that ‘meds don’t work’ and cite frightening stories about suicide, that ‘meds are no better than placebo’, and ‘herbs are better’. It would probably take me several hours to go over all of these memes- which I don’t have- this is the ultra-short version. So I’ll just have to address the over-arching issue first:
    alt med proselytisers disparage use of ALL pharmaceuticals- over-emphasising side effects and neglecting benefits. There is an anti-psychiatry movement that works very hard to overturn the progress that has been made through meds over the past 50 years. They are denialists. Their “research” is often cited by natural health gurus and their followers. Some even maintain that mental illness doesn’t exist. Or that the Medico-Pharma cartel “makes up” conditions for profit.

    Herbs like St John’s Wort may have slight benefits ( Dr Novella @ Neuroloica blog; Nov 2008; on Gingko) but this is not effective for people who experience serious problems with depression. There are clear benefits with SSRIs for those with more severe depression ( Fournier et al; 2010, JAMA; Kirsh et al; 2008, PLoS Med 5)….. HOLD ON…

  103. #103 Denice Walter
    May 12, 2012

    I often hear aspersion cast upon SSRIs and anti-psychotics by the alt med activists I survey:
    these are “dangerous drugs”, they tell us, that “cause” childen to commit suicide or “shrink your brain” failing to discuss why such powerful meds were ever developed *in the first place*- because people suffered or were not able to function well enough to take care of themselves. Ever hear of Bedlam? It was a hospital in London; NY had Creedmoor. People with SMI were kept in institutions. The general public whispered about them but usually never saw them.

    Those who have an axe to grind against SBM never discuss *why* people resort to complex meds with side effects- because for many of them, even with side effects, it improves their daily life and enables them to function more independently. Critics paint simplified pictures in black and white- physiology is much more complicated and mental illness has social and educational implications as well.
    Severely depressed adolescents who contemplate suicide and are not counselled adequately may have issues because the meds make a partial improvement- that allows them to plan and act- without being supported in alternative courses of action by the social environment. To go into this in detail would take all week ( brief discussion of SSRIs re suicide risk: Wikipedia)

    Alt med** offers st John’s Wort, niacin, 5-HTP and spirituality- fat lot those will do you if you actually have a real problem.

    ** the anti-psychiatry movement includes advocates of Orthomolecular Psychiatry, Abram Hoffer, Peter Breggin, Thomas Szasz, Scientology, Natural News, Progressive Radio Network, Mercola and a host of others.

  104. #104 Denice Walter
    May 12, 2012

    I should add, before I leave that I experience what might be better described as dysthymia (or moroseness) which I’ve dealt with sans meds. While it’s no joke, it’s probably been an influence in my understanding people and writing stuff.

  105. #105 mrs.marry
    May 21, 2012

    Mrs.marry TESTIFIER

    My Name is Mrs. Marry, I was married to my husband for 14 years and we were both bless with three children, living together as one love, until 2011 when things was no longer the way the was [when he lost his job]. but when he later got a new job 6 months after, he stated sleeping outside our matrimonial home. only for me to find out that he was having an affair with the lady that gave him the job. since that day, each time called him, he no longer pick up my calls and he don’t want to see me around him and he also deleted me from his Facebook account.
    I reported him to harry SPRINGER ON NATIONAL TV [MESSY AFFAIRS], i did many things all just to see if i can just get my husband back. but nothing since to come out good. yet my husband just still keep on seeing the lady.
    Until I met a very good friend of my who was also having a similar problem, who introduced me to a very good love spell caster. but i told her that if it has to do with money that i am not interested, but she said that it has nothing to do with pay first. but the only thing she was ask to do was just to go and TESTIFIER, and that was what she did. And she gave me the spell caster e-mail address and phone number.
    When i contacted him, i was so surprise when he said that if i have the faith that i will get my husband back in the nest three [3] day, and off which it was really so. but i was so surck that i did not pay any thing but my husband was on his knells begging me and the children for forgiveness. this testimony is just the price i have to pay. This Mr.Dr.rivers is good and he is the author of my happiness.this is his e-mail Dr.rivershebalisthome @gmail.com

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