Diary of Unknown Symptoms

Mystery of the Internal Vibration

Entry for January 23, 2008

What a fantastic article… I’ve been down this road!

THE PERILS OF BEING A PATIENT

How to Survive Conventional Medicine with Your Health Intact

by Helke Ferrie

Everyone will sooner or later consult a doctor. That encounter may save your life dramatically in emergency medicine, or lead you into a living hell if chronic disease and cancer are involved. For chronic disease, modern medicine offers drugs derived from complex synthetic chemistry, drugs which are purposely designed to control symptoms and ensure loyal “consumers” until death – usually from the side effects (one of which is chemically induced nutritional deficiency). Indeed, package inserts clearly state “this drug does not cure”. The word cure has become a four-letter word in modern medicine. This symptom-control approach to medicine is provided by well-trained, well-intentioned licensed practitioners.

Having personally experienced medicine at its best and at its worst, these are no hyperboles. Human systems are essentially labyrinths; medicine is no exception. As in the Greek myth, when entering such a system one better have Ariadne’s thread, as the hero Theseus did when seeking out the subterranean monster, the Minotaur, to find the way back out. The Minotaur in our lives is illness, a monster that paralyzes through fear, and heroes are heroes because they conquer their fear – after that, slaying the monster is not necessarily a big deal. Being a hero isn’t all that difficult. Anyone who employs critical thought in the face of authority already is a hero.

YOUR DOCTOR

Doctors who practice “conventional” medicine are fundamentally handicapped by a medical paradigm that accepts most diseases as idiopathic (of unknown cause). In truth, there is no such thing. If doctors tell you that you have an incurable disease they cease to be scientists, whether they know it or not. Don’t believe them. Educate them. And if they won’t listen, fire them.

Conventional thinking equates labels with reality. For example, the labels “cancer”, “multiple sclerosis”, or “diabetes” are descriptive terms that identify the differences between them as seen by the doctor and experienced by the patient. Description is of little help when you want a cure. All of these diseases are ultimately caused by the same thing – heavy metals, nano-bacteria (mercury amalgam fillings and root canals), common pesticides, chronic vitamin D deficiency, or long-term nutritional deficiencies from a diet of processed and nutrient-devoid foods loaded with antibiotics, synthetic flavouring and preservatives. While it is true that cancer is defined by abnormal cell growth, multiple sclerosis is characterized by the disintegration of the nerves’ myelin sheaths, and diabetics are deficient in insulin, the patient needs to understand what caused their disease in order to regain health: no cause, no cure.

Science has proven exhaustively that every disease is caused by some kind of identifiable challenge to the body’s defences, primarily the liver and the immune system (e.g. bacteria, viruses, parasites, radiation, systemic electro-magnetic interference, stress-induced hormonal imbalances with toxic consequences, environmental or pharmaceutical toxins causing organ damage or genetic interference which result in the malfunctioning of vital enzymes, and more). Every disease state is in theory (and also in practice) curable by making the immune system and liver into the patient’s allies through removing that harmful cause and fueling the body with those nutrients that have become deficient.

Synthetic drugs are never nutrients and always increase toxicity. A disease is never a drug deficiency, but always accompanied by serious nutrient deficiencies. The fact that a toxic trigger can cause cancer in one person and diabetes in another is certainly of “academic” interest, and some day we may know why – but who cares?

This confusion between a useful cause-based diagnosis and a descriptive label leads often to lethal “cognitive traps”, as Dr. Groopman explains in his fascinating book How Doctors Think. At autopsy, he reports, at least 15% of diagnoses are proven to have been wrong, which is why the patient is dead. He cites research showing that 80% of serious doctor-caused harm to patients can be explained by a “cascade of cognitive errors”, all stemming from not having listened carefully to the patient and hastily plugging the patient into diagnoses.

When showing my physician husband this book, he snorted, “Most don’t think.” His respect for conventional medical practice got its first shock when, a few weeks after completing his specialization exams, he ran into one of his most intelligent colleagues. When he asked his friend about his current reading, expecting to discuss new research, his friend answered: “Now I am studying the fee schedule.”

MEDICINE’S DARK SIDE

Since the 1970’s, money interests have steadily taken control over how governments run health care systems, how doctors practice, and how medical research is conducted. Last November, I attended an event at the University of Toronto; the guest speaker was Dr. Richard Smith, who until recently was editor of the British Medical Journal (for 25 years), one of the “Big Five”. His brilliant discussion of the phantom world that medical journals have become was as disturbing as his admission that he was unable to stop this corrupting process. He confirmed what editors of the New England Journal of Medicine, Marcia Angell and Jerome Kassierer, had reported in their own recent books about their failed battles against the dominance of financial interests and the fraudulent research these interests require to profit from sick people.

When asked if one could trust any leading medical journals, Dr. Smith laughed out loud and exclaimed: “No!” And how should patients protect themselves from doctors acting in good faith on this mostly fraudulent research? Dr. Smith replied, “Patients have to understand that they are actually in a bogus contract with the doctor. The patient thinks the doctor can fix my problem. That is a very powerful fantasy! Patients need to invest time and energy in researching [their problem] and be smarter than the doctor. Nowadays that is possible!” And he recommended the internet-based open-access medical journals which are free of advertising and Big Pharma interference.

Because of a relentless push to produce patentable, lucrative symptom-control drugs, researchers around the world have concluded, after combing through 9.4 million research papers at the US National Library of Medicine in 4,000 journals, that “the vast majority of published research… is false.” (Wall Street Journal, Sept. 17, 2007). As for mandatory continuing medical education, Nature reported on September 22 last year that these conferences are basically “re-allocated marketing events” controlled by the funding pharmaceutical and medical devices industries. On January 7 and 8, CBC reported that the Health Canada warnings about adverse events associated with prescription drugs are generally ignored by doctors: “We cannot open the letter for them. We cannot make them read them,” the HC spokesperson said.

BASIC SURVIVAL TIPS

It is charitable and proper to forgive those who sacrifice their profession and their patients by functioning as drug-pushers, for they know not what they do. But it is vital that patients know that only those doctors who determinedly think outside the box will listen carefully and dare to go for a genuine “cure”.

Patients can’t wait until medical schools and journals are reformed and profit ceases to dominate medicine. You need to take charge. Ask your doctor if he or she sees drug reps and point out that they are neither patients nor medically trained, so you – the patient – expect equal time. Always hold your doctor to the current standard of practice as published on the websites of the licensing colleges:

Never accept an antibiotic unless the target bacteria has been identified through appropriate lab tests and it is certain your infection is not caused by a virus, which antibiotics can’t kill. Antibiotic resistance is possibly the greatest health threat in the world today – caused mostly by careless prescribing and their prophylactic use in food-producing animals.

Always treat pain, chronic or acute, to the fullest extent as it is now internationally recognized as the 5th vital sign and must be treated with the drugs that work best for you and in the individually necessary dosage.

C) Always demand a full explanation (diagnosis, treatment, drugs prescribed, dangers of that drug etc.) because informed consent is the law governing medical practice, and if necessary point that out.

Always ask if the drug prescribed is still under patent protection. If it is, ask to see the current CPS (Compendium of Pharmaceuticals and Specialties) to check for Health Canada warnings (the older the drug, the safer it generally is). Insist on a generic equivalent or substitute if available, as the Canadian Medical Association guidelines expects of doctors. This applies even to drugs handed out in a hospital: you are entitled to this information.

ADVANCED SURVIVAL TIPS

While discussing this article with my husband, he suggested that it is vital, when consulting a doctor, “never to use a conventional diagnostic term”. If you say “I am so depressed”, sixty seconds later you will have a prescription and be headed for Antidepressant Hell, because you have just pushed a well-worn button. To find out what awaits you on those drugs, spend a couple of hours surfing the net by typing in search words such as “SSRIs + adverse events” or “+ legal actions”.

Should you ever be tempted to take a drug you see advertised on American television (unavoidable since Direct to Consumer Advertising (DTCA) of drugs is permitted in the US), clear your brains as fast as possible by surfing the net for information on DTCA. Those are probably the deadliest drugs on the market and most were created to target diseases invented by the pharmaceutical industry to create a new market niche.

Should your doctor offer you enrollment in a drug trial, remember that doctors get paid big bucks for such recruitments. Guy Faguet, author of The War On Cancer, spent his life as a leading researcher with the US National Institutes of Health and the American Cancer Society. He describes drug trials as nothing less than human toxicity tests. (As an aside, note that he disapproves of mammography, and PSA tests for prostate check-ups, because of their unacceptably high false positives!) On September 27 last year, the New York Times published salient details of the US Department of Health report on drug trials. The Inspector General concluded that “in many ways, rats and mice get better protection as research subjects than do humans.”

If you are taking a synthetic drug, consult the nutrient depletion handbook by the American Association of Pharmacists, and Dr. Cass’ excellent book. They spell out which essential nutrients are depleted by every prescription drug. Supplementing those nutrients is the logical thing to do and is guaranteed to reduce side effects and may even get you off the drug altogether.

How do you know what is a bad drug? Google the World Health Organization’s Essential Drugs List; not a single patented drug is on it. It does not include cholesterol-lowering drugs, antidepressants and the like. Then there is the excellent newsletter Best Pills Worst Pills published monthly by Ralph Nader’s organization, Public Citizen, which has successfully challenged the FDA on many dangerous drugs and got them off the market. A quick internet survey on the number of law suits filed against a drug provides the most informative warning.

To me, any drug that carries a Health Canada advisory or an FDA black box warning is unacceptable, no matter the disease, because they have been found to interfere with cell repair, damage the immune system and the liver, and decrease vitally important hormone activity. I prefer to be my body’s friend instead. For every conventional and usually toxic treatment, there exists a non-toxic alternative – every one of which was developed by mainstream medical research. Your doctor is not trained to look for alternatives and drug reps don’t discuss them. Doctors are always astonished to learn that they exist and are science-based. In fact, never before in the history of medicine have we had this much choice.

Descartes (1590-1650) started us on the path of scientific thinking, which is both a habit and a method of antiauthoritarianism. Descartes taught that “systematic doubt” should be “the guiding principle for action” – a matter of life and death for patients. Uncritically accepting external authority of any kind is always the beginning of suffering because then you have “squandered [your] resistance for a pocket-full of mumbles”, as Simon and Garfunkle famously put it. If anybody wonders if this article comes close to practising medicine without a license, I better make it clear that my aim was to suggest everybody should treat, with determined and polite doubt, all those who practice medicine with a licence.

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June 5, 2009 Posted by | Health | , , | 3 Comments

Entry for June 28, 2006

Variation in Mineral Content of Bottled Waters

Substantial variations in the concentrations of the three major minerals were observed in the bottled waters studied. Magnesium content ranges from to 126 mg per litre, sodium content ranges from 0 to 1,200 mg per litre, and calcium content ranges from 0 to 546 mg per liter. In general, waters bottled in North America had low mineral contents, while waters bottled in Europe had high mineral contents. For the North American bottled waters, the median concentration for magnesium was 2.5 mg per liter, for sodium it was 5 mg per liter, and for calcium it was 8 mg per liter, For the European bottled waters, the median concentration for magnesium was 23.5 mg per litre, for sodium it was 20 mg per litre, and for calcium it was 115 mg per litre.

When comparing the mineral contents of bottled water, it is important to know the variation of the mineral content from bottle to bottle. According to the technical director of the International Bottled Water Association, variation of mineral content is less than 5% (Arthur von Wiesenberger, personal communication) mainly due to different testing methods. We did not find any published studies that looked at the mineral content of tap water. However, from the limited information we were able to obtain, it appears that tap water in major North American cities contains relatively low levels of magnesium (<48 mg per liter), sodium (< 195 mg per litre), and calcium(<85 mg per litre).

June 28, 2006 Posted by | Health | , , , , | Leave a comment

Entry for June 02, 2006

Environment Minister Rona Ambrose has accepted the challenge to be tested for toxins. From everything I’ve read so far, I have a feeling I’ll know what the results will be already…

Children ‘being poisoned’ by chemicals

Jun.1, 2006. 05:21PM

CANADIAN PRESS

OTTAWA — Environment Minister Rona Ambrose has accepted a challenge from an environmental group to have her blood and urine tested for toxic contamination.

Ambrose agreed to be tested at the request of Toronto-based Environmental Defence, which has been raising alarms about contamination of Canadian children.

On Thursday, the group released results showing that the bodies of seven children tested are contaminated by a cocktail of toxic chemicals ranging from PCBs to flame retardants.

“The minister cares about that and that’s why she’s going to take up the challenge,” Ryan Sparrow, a spokesman for Ambrose, said in an interview.

The study found an average of 23 known or suspected toxins — including carcinogens, hormone disrupters and neurotoxins — in the bodies of the children tested.

The researchers tested 13 individuals from five families, six adults and seven children. The families live in Vancouver, Toronto, Sarnia, Montreal and Quispamsis, N.B.

“Our children are being poisoned every day by toxic chemicals that surround them at home, school and play,” said Rick Smith, executive director of Environmental Defence.

He said Ambrose will be tested using the same methodology, and results should be available in the fall. Health Minister Tony Clement and NDP Leader Jack Layton have also volunteered to be tested.

Smith said the study was intended to change the pollution issue from “a theoretical, abstract debate to a highly personal discussion of health,” said Smith.

He said most environment ministers in Europe have been tested, and this has contributed to a strong push to control toxic chemicals.

The adults in the Canadian study were contaminated by 32 chemicals, and had higher concentrations of some products no longer in use, such as DDT and PCBs.

But the children had higher levels of newer chemicals such as brominated flame retardants (PBDEs) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), used in stain repellents and non-stick coatings.

“It is common to expect adults to be more contaminated by harmful chemicals than children because they have had a longer time to accumulate chemicals in their bodies,” says the report.

“The results of this study, however, show that this is not always the case.”

A decreased presence of banned chemicals in children is evidence that bans do work, says the report. But effects linger long after a chemical is removed from use — DDT was banned years ago but can still be detected in children as young as 10.

Health Canada responded to the findings by promising a national study in which 5,000 people will be monitored for toxic contamination over a two year period from 2007 to 2009.

“The government of Canada takes very seriously the exposure of Canadians to environmental chemicals,” said Health Canada spokeswoman Carolyn Sexauer.

She said children are at greater risk of contamination than adults because of their physical size, immature organs, physiology, behaviour, curiosity and lack of knowledge.

Vivian Maraghi, a study volunteer from Montreal, said she was astounded to learn she had 36 industrial chemicals in her body.

“But when I saw the toxic chemicals in my son’s body, I was angry. Our children deserve better protection.”

Environmental Defence says Canada’s regulation of toxic chemicals is weak and ineffective. However, similar levels of contamination have been found in the United States.

Many chemicals now on the market were never screened for health effects because they were introduced before awareness of the hazards of industrial pollution.

June 2, 2006 Posted by | Health | , , | Leave a comment

Entry for March 09, 2006

Another great article in the Toronto Star newspaper:

Cool, but how safe is it? Toronto Hydro plans blanket wireless network for city core

Some urge caution in the face of potential health risks

Mar. 8, 2006. 05:21 AM

ISABEL TEOTONIO

STAFF REPORTER

News that Toronto will be blanketed by radio signals enabling Internet access anywhere downtown, had some cautioning yesterday that officials should move slowly since little is known about associated health risks.

“Where are the studies that demonstrate this is safe?” asked David Fancy, head of SWEEP Initiative, which stands for “safe wireless electrical and electromagnetic policies.”

“I have never seen any actual peer-reviewed science, epidemiological studies done with human subjects over an extensive period of time that suggests this is actually safe,” said Fancy, also a dramatic arts professor at Brock University.

“Let’s be honest about this, let’s see the science around this before we move.”

His comments came on the heels of yesterday’s announcement that Toronto Hydro plans to blanket the city core by the end of the year with wireless fidelity (WiFi) coverage, which would allow logging on to the Web anywhere in the “hotspot.”

Dr. Louis Slesin, founder and publisher of New York-based scientific newsletter Microwave News, doubts there are major health risks, but echoed Fancy’s concerns, saying, “We haven’t done our homework on this.”

“This is the new era, this is the new world and it’s not going to go away, so it seems that we should be doing long-term studies about what we’re doing to our urban environments,” said Slesin, adding that U.S. cities are doing much the same. “The jury is still out on this one,” Slesin said in a telephone interview.

It’s that belief that prompted Fred Gilbert, president of Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, to ban WiFi networks from parts of the campus.

“There is some evidence, and it’s growing evidence, that there might be health effects, so why should we unnecessarily expose people to this — whether they want it or not — until we’re absolutely certain?” Gilbert said.

But physicist Tony Muc, of the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Medicine, argues that, in fact, the “scientific jury is in.”

While extensive studies on WiFi haven’t been conducted, he pointed out that research has been done on other electromagnetic waves, the kind that we’re bombarded with each day from household appliances, microwaves, cellphones and radios.

“You have radio and TV signals travelling through your home, through your workplace, and this would be no different,” said Muc, who has studied the impact of electromagnetic fields and radiation on human tissue.

“There are subtle differences in the way that information is being carried and is encoded by (WiFi) waves … But I don’t believe there’s anything particularly problematic when it comes to health hazards.

“I can’t say that I’m other than amused by reactions against a specific application when there are literally dozens of others that are conceptually identical already out there.”

Shahrokh Valaee, a U of T computer engineering professor, agrees. “The whole matter has really been overblown,” he said. “We experience signals every day of our lives, and singling out WiFi as a (danger) is an overreaction.”

March 13, 2006 Posted by | Health | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Entry for March 07, 2006

With all of my evidence so far, I decide I need to see an evironmental specialist who will understand what I am talking about. I’ll try googling for Dr. Riina Bray to get her phone number. A quick few searches and I have her number. I reach the main desk of the Enviromental Heath Department for Sunnybrook Women’s College and I leave a message for them to call me.

I try calling my regular doctor three times to see if maybe he’ll give me a referral and it goes to his full mailbox everytime.

Found this comment after an article in the Toronto Star:

Wireless hotspots carry concerns
Mar. 7, 2006. 01:00 AM

I am appalled by the audacity of cities to force wireless hotspots on its citizens. There are very real health concerns with electric and magnetic fields (EMF), which the Star only recently dedicated a series to (i.e. cellphones).

The president of Lakehead University has just banned Wi-Fi over this very issue, likening the risk of basking in EMF radiation 24/7 to the impact of second-hand smoke and asbestos. We have the right not to be guinea pigs in such a scheme.

Tijs Creutzberg, Toronto

Wonder if Tijs is vibrating?

March 8, 2006 Posted by | Health | , , , | Leave a comment

Entry for February 15, 2006

I’m at my second day of googling the effects and symptoms of electromagnetic hypersensitivity. I come across an article written by Corky Adams in the Toronto Star. After reading the article my jaw dropped to the floor. I couldn’t believe what I was reading.

A study from Trent University had determined that Oshawa had the second highest levels of electromagnetic fields in a study of sixty communities.

Charting the hidden force at street corners

There’s a steadily growing conviction among some researchers that electromagnetic fields can promote bad things such as cancer, miscarriages, depression, Lou Gehrig’s disease and, possibly, Alzheimer’s disease. But there’s all-too-scanty knowledge of how much exposure people get in the course of a day.

To help bridge this knowledge gap, Magda Havas, who teaches in the Faculty of Environmental and Resource Studies at Trent University in Peterborough, has taken readings on the main streets of 60 Ontario communities ranging in size from Toronto (2.3 million people) to Burk’s Falls (1,000).

She found that 49 of the communities (82 per cent) had readings above the level that is associated with childhood leukemia. The worst of all the communities, by far, was Kingston, followed by Oshawa, London, Peterborough, and Toronto.

Burk’s Falls had the lowest readings, followed by Cambridge, Newmarket, Madoc, Perth and Bradford.

Pinpointing sources is important, because it is the accumulated exposure, collected at different places from different sources during the course of a day, that determines health impacts.

Havas is quick to point out there is no proof, as yet, that electromagnetic fields directly cause illnesses. But there is plenty of evidence showing they are associated with illnesses and can promote them.

Her work on Main Street, Ontario, should be a wake-up call to public utilities and other businesses generating electromagnetic fields, such as banks and cellphone companies, which one day could face lawsuits from people claiming compensation for impaired health.

No doubt aware of potential liability, the California Public Utilities Commission ordered a study eight years ago on the effects of electromagnetic fields. Slated to cost $11.2 million, it is the most extensive study ever done and is about to be released. According to the London Sunday Times, the study will suggest hundreds of thousands of people may be at risk.

The strength of magnetic fields is measured in milliGauss (mG), after the German mathematician Karl Friedrich Gauss (1777-1855). According to federal government guidelines in Canada, a cumulative, 24-hour exposure of up to 1,000 milliGauss is safe.

However, Havas says, this guideline is ridiculous. Studies have established that a 24-hour exposure in the range of 2-4 mG doubles the incidence of childhood leukemia. A daily exposure of 16 mG has been shown to triple the risk of miscarriage during the first 10 weeks of pregnancy. When breast cancer cells are exposed to 12 mG, their growth rate increases.

To put this in context, kitchen appliances, measured at a distance of 30 centimetres, can run from 0.1 to 30 mG. In offices, photocopy machines emit up to 4 mG, fluorescent lights up to 3 mG and computer terminals up to 0.6 mG. Power drills can generate up to 4 mG and power saws up to 30 mG.

In Kingston, Havas monitored 36 street corners on Princess St. between Division and Ontario Sts. Her mean reading was 47 mG. In Toronto, the mean reading for 108 street corners on Yonge St. between Bloor and Front Sts. was 19.2 mG. In Oshawa, the mean on Simcoe St. was 29.5 mG; in London on Dundas St., 22.9 mG; and in Peterborough on George St., 20.8 mG.

That’s not good news for sidewalk cafes, street vendors, couriers and people living over stores. Her study is published in The Science Of The Total Environment 298 (2002) at pages 183-206. The study is good news in terms of raising awareness and that’s crucial to any health issue.

March 6, 2006 Posted by | Health | , , , , | Leave a comment

   

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