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Gerson Therapy for Cancer

Gerson Therapy is a largely diet-based alternative treatment for cancer. What have 65 years of medical research concluded about its efficacy and safety?

November 15, 2012 |
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Sources Cited

Acknowledgements

Images thanks to: Pablo Kliksberg, and earthNOW! Films.

Transcript

A number of recent documentaries have renewed interest, in Gerson therapy, a largely diet based alternative treatment for cancer, invented by the late Dr. Max Gerson about 80 years ago.

According to a recent review out of Sloan-Kettering in the Journal Oncology, for about $16,000 you can fly to a clinic in Mexico and spend three weeks “consuming fresh raw fruit and vegetable juices.” OK. Eliminating salt from the diet. So far so good. And taking supplements such as potassium, B12, thyroid hormone, pancreatic enzymes and supposedly detoxifying the liver with coffee enemas to stimulate metabolism. I do not dispute that coffee enemas would not be stimulating, but would not recommend them due to the whole they could kill you thing.

To their credit, modern Gerson practitioners have moved away from the original tenets of the plan, which included feeding people raw calf liver smoothies, after too many people died from systemic blood infections. After learning of the outbreak, staff at the Gerson Institute decided the policy of drinking blended liver was to be altered and instead started injecting raw liver instead.

But hey, conventional cancer treatments are no walk in the park either. The reason people choose them is in hopes that they work. How does the Gerson therapy compare? The first formal investigation into the treatment was back in 1947, and in the 65 years since there’s been over a dozen studies published in the scientific literature and most came to the same conclusion, that Gerson therapy is useless or worse. (in tomorrow's video I'm show you some of the data)

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by Kerry Skinner.

To help out on the site please email volunteer@nutritionfacts.org

Dr. Michael Greger

Doctor's Note

These negative reviews of Gerson Therapy were written before a head-to-head trial was published on the Gerson-style regime versus chemotherapy in terms of survival and quality of life for pancreatic cancer patients. What did it find? You’ll just have to wait until tomorrow's video-of-the-day Gerson Therapy vs. Chemotherapy. I've got 47 other videos on Alternative Medicine—the good, bad, and the ugly. The Campylobacter in the raw liver smoothies is the fecal bacteria in chicken I covered in Poultry and Paralysis. Is oral coffee okay for cancer patients? See Coffee and Cancer.

For more context, check out my associated blog posts: Stool Size and Breast Cancer Risk and  Gerson Therapy for Cancer?

If you haven't yet, you can subscribe to my videos for free by clicking here.

  • basskills

    oh wow. I didn’t really expect that.

  • http://www.facebook.com/johnmorsley John Morsley

    Me too! Cannot wait for tomorrows vid now…

  • John

    What are the 12 studies cited and who funded them?

    • Kenny

      Yes, I’d like to know as well. I bet these studies also concluded that a plant based diet is detrimental to your health.

    • WholeFoodChomper

      The 12 studies are listed in the Lancet study Dr. Greger cites in his Sources above. You can access that study at ScienceDirect (unfortunately, you need to pay for it unless you are a registered member) or you can access it at any library that carries the medical journal Lancet.

  • HemoDynamic, M.D.

    Excellent!

  • WholeFoodChomper

    I am SO happy that you have made a video on this topic. When I first heard of the Gerson therapy for cancer, I was highly suspicious of it. I did not have any scientific evidence to back up mu suspicion and now I do. Just like I suspected, this therapy is a sham and more importantly extremely dangerous. Thank you for making a video on it.

  • newyorkwoman

    I have room in my heart for allopathic and naturopathic medicine. That said, have you noticed that according to natural medicine advocates, natural medicine works and according to mainstream advocates, they don’t? Before I look at a study from the FDA, The Lancet, or the AMA I ask myself some questions. Who sponsored the study? What was the sample group size? Was the natural treatment given from the proper source, in the proper dose and in the proper method? Was there a conclusion recommended before the study began? It seems like all studies should be “scientific” but we should all remember that when we talk about institutions, we are dealing with human beings. Public and private sectors overlap. FDA workers are allowed to consult with pharmaceutical companies. Pharmaceutical companies sponsor medical schools. What happens when a doctor/medical student proves that a popular drug is ineffective when a grant from that pharmaceutical company is their lifeline? Studies that prove a non patented herbal treatment can work could be economically destructive. The study that concluded echinacea was ineffective for the immune system was later found to have used synthetic echinacea and given in a sub standard dose.
    I have spoken with mothers whose children lost speech and a significant degree of cognitive function the same or next day they receive a vaccination only to be told that it was a coincidence. These doctors are very nice people but we all need to do our own research on some level.
    Look at the advertisements for law firms on television, petitioning victims of pharmaceuticals that were removed from the market. Some of these products were advertised one or two years prior. My point is that with the workload of these institutions, we have to be aware that mistakes can happen.

    • Lew Payne

      My question to you: Assume that vaccination X will save 25.0% of the population, and cause adverse side effects to 0.1% of those injected. Should said vaccinations be mandatory?

      The lesson: Anecdotal evidence on the harms of a protocol to 0.1% of the population do not make it a bad protocol. The alternative is to have recurring plagues kill off a higher percentage of the population.

      Practical example: Note how whopping cough is making a comeback (and killing many small children), thanks to parents who refuse to immunize their kids with DTap. Those parents should be held criminally responsible for the deaths of others.

      • Pablo

        lol if vaccination do harm 0,1, how are you sure that it is really safe to the other 25%? Do you know exactly and completely how the body works? A vaccine must be 100% safe because people who is vaccinated is previously and totally healthy, at least from the disease that supposely prevents the vaccine.
        We are playing at russian roulet with the vaccines then. Far more that 0,1 have issues long term from vaccines (I am one), and it is true that all the time effects the day after vaccination are considered casualities.

      • Barb

        My son was vaccinated and still got a bad case of whooping cough at 10. Still has sensitive lungs at 25. If the vaccines really provided immunity, those immunized would have nothing to fear from those who aren’t, would they? I never get the flu vaccine and haven’t had the flu in over 15 years, yet everyone I know who gets the vaccine gets sick.

        • WholeFoodChomper

          I think the issue of vaccination efficacy is a bit more complicated and dependent on the nature of the disease for which the vaccine is created.

          Here’s an interesting article that I read on the topic of flu vaccines that I think makes some good points worth considering: Flu vaccine claims shot down by study.

  • Mark Ryan

    So if the Gerson therapy involves eating a plant based diet, high in raw fruits and vegetables, and in your videos you state that eating said diet turns your blood into a “cancer fighting machine” then how could it be that this treatment is useless or worse?

    • WholeFoodChomper

      I think this statement from the JAMA “Deaths Related to Coffee Enemas” abstract sums it up nicely: “Although diet and nutrition are recognized as important adjuncts in cancer therapy, conventional medicine rejects the concept of cancer therapy relying solely on dietary changes, and unlicensed practitioners of such therapy have been discouraged or prevented from practicing in the United States.”

      Plant-based diets are a great preventive measure and a good compliment or addition to treatment for cancer, but a plant-based diet is by no means a cure.

      • Dana

        I have a sour taste in my mouth, to say the least, after seeing the 2 videos on the Gerson diet. I would have never expected such reviews from dr. Greger. Or, if so, they should be backed up by reviewing dr. Gerson’s book and articles. I believe it is this that causes more harm to the hope and power in own resources of the cancer patient than the quack-etiquette that dr. Gerson receives from conventional medicine. If someone that gains the public trust by sharing such important information on whole plant-based foods’ impact on our health is also supporting the conventional view on the possible value of the Gerson diet, we will definetly not move fast enough to the truth. It simply emphasize what we are urged to believe: that is that we have no power. Yes, you should eat healhy, but don’t ever dare to imagine that if you get ill you’ll be saved by this. Isn’t this the message? And that is a pitty, because there is so much information out there that there is and there was for a long time the cure for cancer (which is not one)…
        I am not going to discuss the potential benefits of coffee enemas, I urge you all interested to read at least the book. I am only going to mention to you the DLT (dose limiting toxity). Do you know that in a conventional oncological dose-finding clinical trial, a phase 1 trial, designs as 3+3 are common? That the PI can accept 1 out of 3 dose related deaths (in the first 30 days after treatment, for example) or 2 out of 6 before going to the next dose level? Do you know that this is how the recommended dose level of a chemotherapeutic drug is established? Would you compare this to not knowing how to administer a coffee enema? Do you know how often patients have serious adverse events finalizing in death following a faulty dose of chemotherapeutic agent administered iv by a nurse that didn’t took the time to read or properly understood the complexities of the protocol or following the ingestion of all pills meant for a week-long treatment as one dose? Can you imagine how many of these events are mentioned in the final publication?
        Would we rather not know how to prepare or administer a coffee enema or not understand at which level of harm our liver is and how much detoxification it can handle, than assume that our oncologist and hospital stuff never make mistakes? If a cancer patient undergoing a detoxifing diet has his liver fail him, in not being capable to handle all the extra load, than I am sure that patient would have just as well died from chemotherapy; it is in my humble opinion just common sense.

        • Lew Payne

          I would rather base my decision using factual evidence presented by peer-reviewed medical studies (the kind that use consistent and standard methods and protocols) than rely on someone else’s “common sense.” In my humble opinion, facts trump common sense.

          • Joe

            To be fair – Gerson started using this protocol years before there was all this research into diet and health. Whatever reservations you have about the treatment plan – and I agree there are some – he did pave the way for a diet and lifestyle based approach when treating disease at a time when anyone suggesting these sort of things was outlawed from the medical profession.

            And quite a few things he was proposing have today been verified by scientific research.

  • Thinkaboudit

    The part about the fruit and vegetable juices sounds on track and is consistent with the findings in The China Study; it’s the liver stuff that seems strange and inappropriate. What’s the problem with coffee enemas? How do they cause harm instead of the good that they are touted for?

    • Lawrence

      Coffee enemas can be dangerous if not administered properly. In particular they can cause severe dilution of electrolytes. That is why they must be taken as prescribed and with the rest of the therapy which ensures the dilution does not occur.

  • http://www.facebook.com/stillpointjoy Pamela Joy

    I would like to point out the the articles on the risks of coffee enemas do not apply to judicious use. In one of them, terrible photos are included of a poor woman who burned herself by using water that was too hot. What if I boiled some broccoli and then drank the too-hot broth, showing up at the hospital with a burned esophagus? Would they publish an article recommending we all stay away from eating cooked vegetables, despite the many health benefits, because of the terrible and graphically presented “risks?

    In the other article, two women died because of electrolyte imbalances after multiple coffee enemas. In one day. Now, suppose I went for a long run or hike in the Arizona sun, without adequate water and electrolyte replenishment, and ended up dead? BTW, this happens quite regularly here in the summer. Would an article be published pointing out that running and hiking are questionable because two people died from doing them?

    Just saying. Love 99.9% of your videos!

    • WholeFoodChomper

      Good points!

  • john

    Reading the abstracts it seems very suspicious. There are words like “case reviews found no evidence” and “those with standard chemo therapy survived 3 times longer than … organic diet”. As colin campbell pointed out in his China Study book, the food board has been taken over by industry. As McDougall mentions in his books and lectures, the medical establishment has gone out of their way to disprove his theories and is one reason why he left the heart center. I don’t really trust that the cancer industry is neutral on this. Just on the Gerson thing, how do you explain the people in the movie who were previously treated by chemo and then shown in the movie recovering quickly and there is “no evidence” and chemo allows patients to live longer? It is incongruent. I don’t think the filmmaker was hiring actors for the film and the film is pretty powerful just like the movie “fat sick and nearly dead”. The cancer industry lobbied and got diet taken out as a potential cure years ago and is why Gerson has to go to Mexico to offer the treatments. How nuetral is the industry given this fact. I know the pharmacetical industry controls the medical industry and the meat and diary industry control the FDA.

    I wish someone like Dr. Greger or Dr. McDougall would visit Charlotte Gerson and personally review the files independently so we could know for a fact that it doesn’t work.

    • Lew Payne

      … and when Dr. Gregor or Dr. McDougall independently conclude that Gerson Therapy shortens the lives of cancer patients and is an impotent protocol with a dubitable track record at best, you will then begin to espouse conspiracy theories about them as well.

  • john

    Looking at this page I got to from one of the studies above:

    http://www.cam-cancer.org/CAM-Summaries/Dietary-approaches/Gerson-therapy/Does-it-work

    “A five-year survival rate retrospective study of 153 cancer patients found higher survival rates in patients … Gerson regime than for patients undergoing other therapies”.

    This was a study done by the gerson staff in 1986. It states that “criticised as being seriously methodologically flawed”. The reasons stated is that they didn’t have an exact control match and didn’t assess other therapies the patient might have been recieving. Watching the movie, I’m guessing they would throw out the woman who first recieved chemo for her and was dying and then saved by gerson. Her case would be one of the “other therapies” so this would make her case methodologically flawed. So if 156 people which is statistically significant were better with the gerson therapy than chemo therapy, why is it being ignored as a legitimate therapy?

    I bet if someone looked at each of those 156 cases and analyzed them with an impartial method they would find that the therapy worked in a significant amount of them. They can label anything “methodologically flawed” based on any subjective critieria they choose. The summary at the beginning of the page above says “no clear evidence that gerson therapy is an effective treatment for people with cancer” even though below it states 153 people had higher survival rates than “other therapies” below.

    • Lew Payne

      I bet if someone reviewed those 156 cases and applied methodical and standardized controls to them, they would reach the same conclusion… that the Gerson study was methodologically flawed.

      Lesson learned: Wishful thinking does not change the facts, but sloppy research and misapplied statistics do. The fact that its so difficult for some people to accept the truth, even in the light of a statistically and methodologically controlled study, show how powerful fear can be.

  • Missm

    So why can’t the therapy be practiced in the USA? That alone makes me suspicious that this treatment therapy has some validity. And what about Hippocrates institute… why can they practice? Seems to be the same type of therapy.

  • jeff swanson

    Here’s a study confirming Gerson therapy for Melanoma vs convention.
    http://www.nutritionj.com/content/3/1/19/table/T7 Table
    http://www.nutritionj.com/content/3/1/19#B78 Article

  • GorillaFit

    Ok people are going to try what they will. I personally have a true account of a friend of mine who’s father had colon cancer. He was a smoker and living off a meat filled Mediterranean diet. He came down with colon cancer with two tumors in his liver. He did chemo with little change. His blood test revealed that his red blood cell count was dangerously low because of the chemo treatment. His doctor advised him to stop chemo all together. He became worried. I had seen nutrition studies and like Gregor am passionate about it. You can find study for anything pretty much. I eat avocados and drink kombucha daily and have another friend who drinks even more than i and never got hospitalized because of acidity Anyway back to the story. So my friend who saw my blog on nutrition decided to do his own research and see if his red blood cell count could return with diet. As he found the red fruits increase red blood cells he asked his dad to try eating large amounts of red fruits. Two weeks later he went back to get his blood cell count and the doctor to his amazement could not believe it. They so he was back on chemo. Chemo was still not doing anything. My friend again thought ok maybe this vegan diet think really can help. So he shared some studies on the power of fruits and vegetables. 8 weeks later I had asked my friend how his dad was doing. He was like the doctors xrays show that his tumors are in necorsis and that it shows real promise. My friend was so amazed and told me that he truly believed that food was powerful. He said the best thing was it looked like his dad’s vitality was back and he did not look ill anymore. My friend is name is Edu. I have emails to prove everything I say here. Will it work for everyone? Probably not but nutrition is more complex than a simple study proving or disproving. It is years of thousands of studies put together to show where the science is leaning. When there is just one study published and there is not more evidence then one should remain a skeptic until we see more. I personally feel that food is medicine and that the issue is not a lack of drugs but years of poor lifestyle choice which alter the natural biochemistry of the body. Genetics can play a role but it is not always our fate. We know that plants foods are healthy. Animal foods have low nutrient content and carry a lot of extra negative baggage so it is more that people don’t consume enough fruits and vegetables over that they eat meat. Plus the environmental and ethical issues that come with it where there is no need to consume animals. But when it comes down to it why take a chance with animal foods when there are so many amazing nutrient rich plant foods. So look at the science as a whole and not band aids that keep people alive because where they fix one problem the cause damage somewhere else. We have all seen the commercials of the millions of side effects that are reported. Drugs will never be the answer when it comes to optimal health. As for Gregor’s videos I think there is a lot of good information but like anything else we must do our own research past just watching his videos. He has done a huge service to get people aware and thinking but it does not stop here.

    - GorillaFit

    • WholeFoodChomper

      GorillaFit, how wonderful that your friend is doing better, and after changing to a plant-based diet at that! Plant-based diets truly are amazing, healing, and medicinal. The convergence of scientific evidence definitely supports these claims.

      Interestingly enough, Jeff Novick, the plant-based registered dietitian, just posted an article on the topic of scientific studies on his site. It’s a fast and good read: Todays Breaking Health News!!.

  • http://www.facebook.com/mlederer3 Michael Lederer

    A cursory investigation shows the following:

    Firstly, this study was intended to be a comparison using a Gonzalez-like Regimen and not the Gerson Therapy. Moreover, Neither therapies’ protocols were properly reproduced

    Secondly, there are gross inconsistencies, omissions and irregularities found in the data and summary of this research both by the FDA & OHRP. The NIH has not addressed these and refutes updating the report, as they say it is the sole responsibility of the original researcher, Dr.Chabot.

    http://aspe.hhs.gov/infoquality/request&response/42b3.shtml

    Thirdly, this is in response to calf liver ingestion and Gerson Therapy’s subsequent discontinued use:

    http://gerson-research.org/docs/HildenbrandGLG-1994-1/index.html

    Lastly, scroll down to see the explanation of a total of three reported deaths from misuse of organic coffee enemas from the U.S. Office of Technology Assessment:

    http://www.ralphmoss.com/coff.html

    “Their deaths were attributed to fluid and electrolyte abnormalities. One took 10 to 12 coffee enemas in a single night and then continued at a rate of one per hour.”

    Hardly the recommended or practiced use by the Gerson therapy.

  • http://www.facebook.com/mlederer3 Michael Lederer

    My previous post relates to both this video and his follow-up, which highlights the study that I referenced.

  • Deanna Lynn

    I feel like I’m getting mixed messages isn’t what gerson therapy is promoted in videos like forks over knives and others

    • Lawrence

      Forks over Knives comes from The China Study by Campbell and Campbell and Heart Attack Proof yourself by Dr Esseltyn. Gerson Therapy is from Dr Max Gerson. Both use a plant based diet but Gerson is more restrictive and is full on medical protocol while Forks over knives is a life style change only.

      • Keepin’ It Real

        All you really need to know is that anyone who tells you that diet is in any way related to health/illness is a quack. Check out Campbell and Esselstyn on quackwatch.com . These guys can’t hide from the truth. Campbell isn’t even a physician (he is as close to being a doctor as Dr. Ruth or Dr. Phil, that is one of the worst idiosyncrasies of the English language that a Ph.D. even a mail-order one is called “doctor”, and what does China have to do with the US? they just export their inferior/dangerous products to us to destroy our economy, how about “The US Study”? that’s what I am interested in) and Esselstyn (the so-called heart doctor) is a breast cancer surgeon, not a board-certified cardiologist, never performed heart surgery in his life. All of this is smoke and mirrors. These people are trying to poison the minds of the public against big pharma and the fast food/junk food industry. Shame on them! Their actions are unconscionable and if lawmakers weren’t sleeping on the job people like them would be put in prison for life. As for the Gerson “therapy”, why do you think it is illegal in the US and has to go hide in Mexico? It’s all snake oil salesmen. Anyone retarded enough to put coffee up their derriere deserves to be removed from the gene pool. Darwin Award, please! I hope the message is not mixed: the AMA has maintained for decades that there is NO relationship between diet and illness. Period. Who are you going to trust: the AMA or some non-certified quack trying to make a buck? For all the JFK assassination conspiracy theorists who think there is a cure for cancer that has been covered up, how on earth do you think doctors could allow their own family members (or themselves) to die just to keep the cure a secret? It is off the hook. Every minute of your life that you spend reading about Campbell/Esselstyn/Gerson and their ilk is a minute of your life that is wasted. Live your life the way you want. You only live once. If a problem develops go to your doctor and he will give you a pill. That is what science is for. Ever heard of penicillin? You swallow the pill and the disease goes away. What could be simpler? Campbell said that milk contains the strongest carcinogen in the world (casein). Rubbish. Ever heard of calcium? Where are you planning to get it, from a carrot? What about Vitamin D? Got milk? And this nonsense about plant-based proteins. Friend, protein comes from meat. Beef, it’s what’s for dinner. Where did these guys go to school, in some hippy commune? Draft dodging, pot smoking long hairs. And all this crap about organic makes me want to pull my hair out. You need to check out Penn & Teller about organic on youtube (all the people shopping at whole foods in the blind taste test thought that the conventional was the organic and vice versa). And what about that Stanford study last year that proved organic has no more nutrition than conventional? We are being sold a bill of goods by these charlatans promoting their elixirs of eternal youth. There always have been and there always will be those who will never give a sucker an even break. As for me, I am sticking with the King, the Clown and the Colonel. If Lipitor is good enough for Robert Jarvik, it is good enough for me. I just pop a couple of Abilify every morning and am good to go. My best friend in high school quit smoking/drinking and drank carrot juice every day becoming a vegan or vegetarian or whatever they call themselves. He got run over by a tobacco truck when he was 28. When it’s your time to go there is nothing you can do about it. All the coffee enemas in the world could not have saved him. Live life. Don’t waste your time on pseudoscience. A doctor’s job is to fix people’s health when it is broken. If they find a cure for cancer they will let you know about it. Trust them like you trust your auto mechanic to fix your brakes. They don’t need any armchair quarterbacks to tell them how to practice medicine. If Gerson/Campbell/Esselstyn had a cure for cancer or heart disease nobody could keep it a secret. None of the doctors in the Gerson clinic were trained or are licensed in the US. Nor do ANY licensed physicians in the US use the Gerson therapy on their patients. There probably is not a single oncologist at MD Anderson who has even heard of Gerson/Campbell/Esselstyn. “I don’t know and I don’t care” was the march they taught us in the army. If Morris Fishbein says it is a fraud that is good enough for me. I truly hope nobody is reading this whole blog because it is a complete waste of time. Cure for cancer? Sure. Would you like to buy a bridge?

        • Lawrence

          Quackwatch has no credibility in my opinion. It is just a forum for denigrating alternate medicine. Dr Campbell is a PHd and is therefore called Dr. It is a convention to recognise his academic achievements. He is the type of research scientist who MDs turn to for answers to medical questions. Dr Esselstyn is a general Surgeon who has become a cardiologist through his extensive study and research surrounding the heart. If you read The China Study you would understand that is compares data collected from China with Data collected from the US. As such perhaps it should be called The China vs USA Study. I could go on but your comments appear to be based on emotion and blind faith in the medical establishment. Please don’t misunderstand, I have a great deal of respect for all doctors and believe we need to rely on them for acute conditions which are life threatening. In the area of chronic disease, however, the medical establishment has a poor track record. I am a heart attack survivor and I credit the doctors for saving my life but I still follow a plant based diet because I believe it is the best diet for my long term health. My doctor agrees with this and my blood test results confirm it.

  • Noel

    I know your videos usually focus on cancer prevention, but if one were to develop cancer in spite of taking all reasonable preventative measures, I’d like to know what you recommend. Perhaps some combination of fresh vegetable juicing combined with modern chemotherapy? If the Gerson Institute doesn’t have it figured out, are there any alternative cancer treatments that are as effective as the current mainstream methods?

  • Zuppkko

    A far as i know, Gerson’s Theraphy is not a diet, but rather juice fasting with taking enemas. That is WAY better for the body than just a plant based diet. When fasting, body focuses only on cleaning the body. If you also maintain regular exercise (not too excesive), that is “the best cure” every known.

  • Whocares

    Gorilla’s are malnutrition because they need protien. Chemo + Radiation = Trillions$$$ Gerson institute are not allowed on US grounds hmmm?? Dr sounds a little arrogant. Have an open mind and research don’t listen to the mouth because its full of poison.

  • jm

    I think the Gerson research Dr Greger cites is bringing into question the validity of the general point of view he sometimes appears to promote. While there is no question that the isolated studies he usually reports are valid, the conclusion he appears to imply: that they may have overriding significance for health in the context of real disease, is brought into serious doubt. Apparently diet is not effective unless accompanied by chemotherapy. I take it that this is conclusion Dr Greger actually believes the literature supports.

  • Angel

    After 16 years of fighting fibromyalgia. Have had ovarian cyste removed then eventually a hysterectomy. Three sinus surgeries for continuous polyp growths and sinus cysts. My doctors say there is no known prevention of them. Now facing more surgery to remove more. I have had cervical disk removal with now a plate in my neck and cronic nerve pain. With all the numerous drugs and medical procedures over the years i now have stopped all medication. I am going on a plant based diet. I figure i have done all the medical treatmens available,so now I’m going to do this radical idea of healing myself with nature. I will comment in 6 months and let you know how I’m doing. I should note i have no gluten or dairy allergy according to doctor. I still will eliminate them for 6 months also to stick with the plant based diet. Should be an interesting experiment.

    • http://www.DonForresterMD.com/ Don Forrester MD

      I will look forward to posts on your journey to good health. You might also be interested in reading three of John McDougall’s newsletter articles available through his website. They are Diet for the Desperate (Dec 2002), Fat Vegan (Dec 2008) and Sick Vegan (Oct 2002). Available also on his website is the free lecture called “The Starch Solution”. Some of the conditions we acquire after years of poor lifestyle habits unfortunately are hard to reverse or take time. An example would be the narrowed disc spaces in the lower back associated with arterial disease of the middle lumbar arteries… see Dr. Greger’s video’s on back pain. There are about 1 in 130 folks who have true celiac disease and need to avoid gluten at all costs. There are certainly some people who improve there health due to avoiding gluten some of whom may have wheat allergies. I believe the jury is still out on why these folks improve… it may be simply a matter that many products containing gluten are processed and have a high calorie density and are associated with overweight and obesity. The best introduction to calorie density is Jeff Novick’s lecture, Calorie Density: Eat More, Lose Weight and Live Longer available on his website. There are many chronic conditions such as fibromyalgia and gynecological problems which get better with the proper diet. However, as you proceed on your journey if you develop symptoms you need to work with your physicians to make sure you don’t have something that does respond to conventional therapy. Good Luck.