124 Ways Sugar Ruins Your Health

By Nancy Appleton, PhD

Summary: You’ve heard that sugar can suppress the body’s immune system, but did you know it interferes with the absorption of calcium? How about that it can cause food allergies, depression, and cancer of the breast, ovaries, and prostate? Or that sugar can reduce the good cholesterol in your blood and increase the triglycerides, two of the strongest indicators we have of heart disease risk? Despite the massive commercial campaign to paint refined sugar as harmless—or at worst merely “empty calories”—hoards of scientific evidence indicate that it is far worse than that. In this startling list, Dr. Nancy Appleton documents 124 ways in which sugar has been scientifically implicated as a poison to human health, complete with 124 reputable references to back up her claims. From nancyappleton.com, 2004.

Breast Feeding

By the United States Department of Labor

Summary: “No single factor exercises a more pronounced influence on the development of the baby and on his health during his entire life than nursing at his mother’s breast.” So wrote the U.S. Department of Labor (USDL) in its landmark Folder 8, an annual report issued from the 1920s through the 1940s encouraging mothers to breast feed their infants and advising them on the best nutrition to support their body in the task. Though, sadly, the government would later abandon its official support of breast feeding, the Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research continued to reprint snippets from the USDL’s Folder 8, along with the article “Weaning the Breast-Fed Baby” from Today’s Health magazine, as the single publication presented here. With its emphasis on untainted animal foods, fresh produce, and unprocessed foods, the diet outlined in this classic guide is as sound for nursing mothers today as it was in its day. Multiple sources, published from 1926 to 1962. Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research reprint 122. 

The Battlefront for Better Nutrition

By Dr. Royal Lee

Summary“Yes, there is a battle going on,” Dr. Royal Lee writes in this 1950 article from the magazine The Interpreter. But the war Dr. Lee was referring to did not involve guns or missiles. It was a contest hidden from public view, waged between the nation’s food manufacturers and its first nutritionists—a war regarding the truth about processed foods. While modern beliefs about diet and health stem largely from the disproven idea that fat and cholesterol cause heart disease, the picture looked quite different to America’s nutrition pioneers. These practitioners and researchers, living at a time when industrially processed foods morphed from novelty to staple of the country’s food supply, witnessed firsthand a phenomenon repeated across the globe throughout the twentieth century: wherever processed foods were introduced, the “modern” diseases—heart attacks, cancer, stroke, diabetes, obesity, arthritis, liver disease, ulcers, tooth decay, and so on—soon followed, where they had been virtually nonexistent before. This phenomenon was so obvious and so predictable that only a massive conspiracy between industrial food manufacturers and the federal government, as Dr. Lee bravely outlines in this explosive essay, could hoodwink the American people into believing that processed and refined foods are capable of nourishing the human body. From The Interpreter, 1950. Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research reprint 30-E.

Abstracts on the Effect of Pasteurization on the Nutritional Value of Milk

[By the Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research]

SummaryAt the turn of the twentieth century, sanitary conditions on many American dairy farms were deplorable, and it was not uncommon for humans to become infected by dangerous microbes transmitted in cow’s milk. While many officials pressed for sanitary regulations that would force producers to provide safe raw milk to the public, other powers pushed for another, less expensive option: pasteurization. Heating milk to high temperatures allowed germ-infested product to be sold to the public instead of being discarded. But while pasteurization did help neutralize many of the pathogens introduced by unscrupulous dairy farms, it had another, rather significant consequence that has gone long ignored. In short, pasteurizing milk destroys its nutritive value, as this collection of research abstracts from the 1930s shows. Whereas the studies report raw milk to promote growth, immunity, and excellent health in general, pasteurized milk was shown to do almost the complete opposite, inviting vitamin deficiency and disease in people who drink it, particularly infants. Even its calcium supply was shown to be highly unusable, making “scalded milk” one of the great impostors of modern food manufacturing. Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research reprint 7, 1939.

The Fallacy of “High Potency” in Vitamin Dosage

By Dr. Royal Lee

Summary: There’s no harm in taking high doses of synthetic vitamins, right? That’s what most people believe anyway. Even many health practitioners think so. Yet early nutrition research showed clearly that ingesting large doses of synthetic, non-food-based supplements (what pass as “vitamins” in today’s world) can have serious consequences on your health. For instance, as Dr. Royal Lee points out in this 1950 article, even a moderate excess of synthetic thiamine (vitamin B1) induced disorders such as herpes zoster, hyperthyroidism, gallstones, and sterility in test subjects, and high doses of synthetic vitamin E caused calcium loss in the bones of test animals—the very opposite of the intended effect. The latter case, Dr. Lee says, illustrates the “little known and highly important” fact that high doses of a synthetic vitamin can cause the very same symptoms as a deficiency of that vitamin. Thus long-term use of most any supplement sold today may only make worse the condition it’s being taken for—something to think about your next trip down the vitamin aisle. Published by the Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research, circa 1950.

Excerpts from “Nutrition in Everyday Practice”

By E.C. Robertson and F.F. Tisdall and by Dr. E.V. McCollum

Summary: Excerpts from two chapters of a 1939 compilation by the Canadian Medical Association, which admits that “the practical application of facts concerning nutrition has not kept pace with our increasing knowledge” and warns Canadian physicians that they “must increase their interest in this problem of normal nutrition, otherwise the public will seek information on this subject elsewhere.” (Advice that was, tragically, almost wholly ignored.) In the chapter “Nutrition and Resistance to Disease,” Roberston and Tisdall explain that while clinical evidence regarding nutrient deficiencies in humans can be difficult to obtain because of experimental limitations, this is not the case for animal studies, which show quite clearly the effects of even “comparatively slight” shortages in vitamins. The authors present studies showing drastic differences in resistance to disease in animals fed a diet sufficient in nutrients and those fed diets deficient in, respectively, vitamins A, B, and D; minerals; and animal protein. “These studies furnish clear-cut evidence that improper nutrition lowers the resistance of the animal to infection,” the authors state, “and also that the nutritional deficiency does not have to be so severe as to produce outstanding evidence of disease.” In the second chapter, “Better Nutrition as a Health Measure,” Dr. McCollum discusses the specific roles of vitamins A, C, and D in the body and in dental health in particular. From Nutrition in Everyday Practice, 1939. Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research reprint 115.

Do You Want to Lose the Hair on Your Chest?

By Dr. Royal Lee and unknown author

Summary: Two articles featuring quotes and commentary by Dr. Royal Lee that contrast the incredible nutritional value of butter with the equally incredible lack of nutritional value of “oleomargarine” (what we call simply margarine today). In particular, the relationship between vitamin E and pubescent development is discussed, with Dr. Lee reminding readers that “sex development demands vitamin E, and butter is our main source in the American diet.” Dr. Lee presents photos of boys and girls demonstrating the failure of sexual differentiation to occur as a result of nutrient starvation. He also discusses the vital roles of the vitamin F and D complexes—both found naturally and in their entirety in butter but not in margarine—in assimilating and distributing calcium in the body. Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research reprint 59, 1948. Multiple original sources. 

The Cereal Grains: Some of Their Special Characteristics

By Dr. Royal Lee

Summary: With grains getting a bad rap in some nutrition circles these days, we tend to forget that historically many cultures thrived on diets rich in cereals. The rye eaters of the Swiss Alps, the oat lovers of the Scottish isles, the wheat-heavy Hunza of northern India—all were studied and touted by investigators of the early 1900s for their extraordinary hardiness and freedom from disease. (Of course, their grains were whole, genetically unaltered, grown in healthy soil, and freshly milled before cooking, but that’s another story.) In this 1953 missive, Dr. Royal Lee discusses the nutritional virtues of some of our common grains, commending wheat for its high phosphorus content, rice for the superior biological value of its protein, and oats and rye for their muscle-building effect. He even explains why barley tea—once a household remedy for everything from teething to insomnia—might help keep you free from infectious disease. For anyone questioning the nutritional value of whole grains, Dr. Lee’s words will come as a thought-provoking surprise. Published by the Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research, 1953.

Vitamins in Dental Care

By Dr. Royal Lee

Summary: Originally published in Health Culture, this 1955 article outlines the critical roles of natural vitamin complexes, such as vitamins A, B, C, D and F, in maintaining and restoring dental health. Dr. Lee specifically credits the research of the celebrated Dr. Weston Price: “Dr. Weston A. Price was the first dentist to publish an article asserting that dental caries was primarily a result of vitamin deficiency. This was in 1927. In 1923, I had prepared a paper on the subject of ‘The Systemic Cause of Dental Caries,’ and read it to the senior class of Marquette Dental College, subscribing to the same hypothesis.” Amazingly, conventional dentistry still fails to comprehend the basic truth that a properly nourished body is resistant to tooth decay. Reprint 30G, 1955.

Tragedy and Hype: The Third International Soy Symposium

By Sally Fallon and Mary G. Enig, PhD

Summary: Reflections on the Third International Soy Symposium by two of the most outspoken critics of processed soy products. “Far from being the perfect food,” Fallon and Enig write, “modern soy products contain antinutrients and toxins, and they interfere with the absorption of vitamins and minerals.” The authors also cite the infamous letter of Drs. Dan Sheehan and Daniel Doerge, two members of the FDA’s toxicology department who tried in vain to stop their agency from awarding soy an official health claim. From Nexus Magazine, 2000.

Scientists Protest Soy Approval

By Dr. Daniel Sheehan and Dr. Daniel Doerge

Summary: In this shocking letter, two FDA toxicology experts officially protest their agencys decision to grant soy a health claim in 1999. “We oppose this health claim,” the researchers write, “because there is abundant evidence that some of the isoflavones found in soy…demonstrate toxicity in estrogen-sensitive tissues and in the thyroid.” Effects of such toxicity in animal testing, they add, include breast cancer, thyroiditis, abnormal brain and reproductive development (especially in infants fed soy), goiter, bodily deformities and vascular dementia—just to name a few. Granted, the researchers say, these effects are based on animal testing, but short of testing potential poisons directly on humans, animal tests “are the front line in evaluating toxicity, since they predict, with good accuracy, adverse effects in humans.” Something to think about that next time you opt for that soy-milk latte. From abcnews.com, 1999.

Refined Sugar: Its Use and Misuse

By Harold Lee Snow, MD

Summary: “Excessive use of of refined sugar in the United States has become a serious nutritional problem.” You might think these words were uttered by some holistic nutritionist of today, but they are actually the first sentence of this remarkable article from 1948 by physician Harold Snow. Backed by 56 peer-reviewed references, Dr. Snow discusses in detail many of the seen and unseen dangers of refined sugar that have been criminally ignored for decades. Rashes, infections and allergies in children; arthritis, neuritis, and rheumatism; digestive dysfunction; hyperinsulinism; acidosis; and acne are just a few of the dangers of sugar identified by science, Snow says. “If one can avoid eating refined sugar,” he concludes, “one can expect more vibrant health, and a longer life with greater freedom from some of the acute and chronic diseases and complaints which many modern doctors are unable to diagnose or to treat successfully.” From The Improvement Era magazine. Reprint 126, 1948.

Raw Food Vitamins

By Dr. Royal Lee

Summary: In this article from Health Culture magazine, Dr. Royal Lee describes in detail the negative effects of cooking and pasteurizing foods, specifically with regard to the destruction of vitamins, amino acids such as lysine and glutamine, and enzymes such as the phosphatase group, which help free up calcium in raw milk for absorption and aid its digestion (phosphatase is destroyed in pasteurized milk). Phosphatase also neutralizes the infamous compound phytic acid, so abundant in whole grains, that binds minerals and prevents them from being taken up by the body. Lee also discusses the vital role of vitamin E in nutrition. Reprint 30C, 1956.

The Systemic Causes of Dental Caries

By Dr. Royal Lee

Summary: Amazingly, Dr. Royal Lee presented this paper in 1923, to his senior class at Marquette University Dental School. In it he brilliantly ties together different lines of research showing a correlation between tooth decay and both systemic vitamin deficiency and susceptibility to infectious disease. The key connection, he says, is the malfunctioning of the endocrine system, brought about by the consumption of a diet high in cooked and processed foods. Such a vitamin-deficient diet, he explains, sets up a vicious cycle: Vitamin deficiency weakens the endocrines; weakened endocrines diminish the body’s ability to resist infection and tooth decay; fighting infection creates a greater need for vitamins; increased lack of vitamins further weakens the endocrines; etc. To avoid this downard spiral and combat cavities in the process, Lee recommends a diet with “as much uncooked food as possible,” including raw milk. This paper, remarkable for its time and just as remarkable today, put Dr. Lee on the map as one of the true giants in nutrition history. Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research reprint 30A. 

The Role of Some Nutritional Elements in the Health of the Teeth and Their Supporting Structures

By John A. Myers

Summary: A remarkable overview of some of the great, ignored research in nutrition history. First, author John Myers details the pioneering works of Dr. Weston A. Price and Dr. Francis Pottenger Jr., who in the 1930s showed clearly that tooth decay is but one symptom in an overall debilitation of human health brought on by the consumption of processed foods—a degeneration that includes diminished resistance to bacterial infection, onset of any number of degenerative diseases, and the alarming introduction of birth defects and mental illness in offspring of people who eat “modern” foods. Myers then touches on the famous studies of residents of Deaf Smith, Texas, the “county without a dentist,” and shows how these studies were used to justify the mass fluoridation of water in America despite their evidence suggesting something quite to the contrary. Finally, Myers draws form his own twenty-five years of clinical experience to illustrate the obvious practical effectiveness in preventing and reversing tooth decay and other dental disease by supplementing the diet with essential nutrients such as vitamins A, B6, D, and E, the minerals zinc, iodine, and magnesium, and the essential fatty acids. A true classic on alternative health. From Annals of Dentistry. Reprint 107, 1958.

The Well-Fed Tooth

By Fred Miller, DDS

Summary: “America is a nation of ‘candyholics’ and soft drink addicts, of food adulterators, processors and refiners,” writes Dr. Fred Miller in words that ring as true today as in 1946, when he wrote them. “Having practiced dentistry for more than thirty years I am thoroughly convinced—speaking from the biological point of view, not the moral aspect—that refined white flour and its products—bread, crackers, cookies, pastries —and refined sugar and its products—candies, hard candies and soft drinks—are doing more harm in this country than hard liquor.” A great historical overview of the state of malnutrition in America from a frontline dentist. From The Land magazine. Reprint 49A, 1946.

Vitamins in Dentistry

By Dr. Royal Lee

Summary: A classic Royal Lee document, read before a New York dental group in 1940. In it Dr. Lee outlines how far the understanding of nutrition and dental health had come and how poorly the dental profession had stayed current with this advance of knowledge. He cites many examples—fully referenced—of the direct effect of nutrients on dental health. A great paper if anyone bothered to read and understand it. “Drill ’em and fill ’em” was the dental mantra then, as it is today. Reprint 30B, 1940.

A Plan for Testing the Theory of Complete Tooth Nutrition

By Alfred Aslander

Summary: “A tooth is a living tissue; not a dead mineral structure,” writes Swedish researcher Alfred Aslander in this compelling 1964 report. “And a tooth is an independent individual that grows out of the mandible in somewhat the same way as a plant grows out of the soil. The plant receives nutrients from the soil solution, the tooth from the blood stream. The growth of [each is] governed by the same laws of nutrition.” The author proposes, based on animal studies and his own experimentation, that supplementing the diet with bone meal will supply all the nutrients required by a tooth and even outlines a study that would settle the debate about nutrition and dental disease. Too bad no one took him up on it. Report from the Division of Agriculture, The Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden. Reprint 134B, 1964.

Leukemia in Infants and Young Children: A New Etiological Concept

By W.J. McCormick, MD

Summary: Writing at 81 years of age, the famous Canadian physician W.J. McCormick discusses the relationship between smoking mothers, vitamin C deficiency, and the rising incidence of leukemia in the very young. “This close link [between leukemia and] scurvy seems to have been completely overlooked by modern writers on leukemia,” McCormick says, “the major stress being given to genetic changes in chromosomes, irrespective of possible adverse contributing maternal factors.” Once again, medicine’s myopic view of disease as the result of “bad genes or germs” prevented consideration of malnutrition as a possible cause of an illness barely known to our whole-food-eating ancestors. From the Journal of Applied Nutrition. Reprint 5G, 1961.

How the Facts Are Suppressed in Connection with Bone Meal

By Alfred Aslander

Summary: In this circular from the Division of Agriculture, Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden, the author surveys research conducted in Sweden and Switzerland on supplementing the diet with bone meal to prevent dental caries (cavities). He exposes significant design flaws in a study cited by the dental establishment to discredit bone-meal supplementation, and he describes a number of other studies that showed bone meal to be highly effective in preventing tooth decay. He also recounts his thwarted effort to have his own research published by journals beholden to the dental establishment. “At least once upon a time it was considered as an axiom that scientific investigations should aim solely at the pursuit of the truth, and consequently scientific journals should aim at publishing the truth. In this case it seems…[their] aim has been something else.” Note: a year before this article appeared, Dr. Royal Lee introduced a completely raw, cold-processed veal bone meal powder (flour) for use by dentists. Reprint 134A, 1964.