Constipation Syndrome; Calcium; Influence of Vitamin E on Glucose Metabolism; Money Collected for Research
Contents in this issue:
- “The Constipation Syndrome,”
- “Influence of Vitamin E on Glucose Metabolism,”
- “Money Supposedly Collected for Research?”
The following is a transcription of the June 1965 issue of Dr. Royal Lee’s Applied Trophology newsletter, originally published by Standard Process Laboratories.
The Constipation Syndrome
Constipation is a common complaint that many of our authorities attribute to various nutritional shortcomings,1 from a lack of bulk-forming factors to a lack of the vitamins and minerals needed by the liver and other organs. Lowered thyroid activity due to iodine or vitamin deficiency.
A congenital thyroid weakness is quite often the cause of a most stubborn kind of constipation,2 illustrating the variety of physiological disturbances that may be responsible. For that reason, there can be no universal remedy that is safe or logical, laxatives being well known to be highly variable in effect and dosage for different persons. In fact, most of the drugs used for the purpose are unfit for habitual use, senna for instance, a low-cost botanical drug commonly used, being a definite cause of hemorrhoids, while a cheap synthetic drug much used, phenolphthalein, which Merck’s Index tells us is “contraindicated in piles or in predisposition to piles,” also is known to cause an immediate rise in blood sugar. These two drugs are the most likely active principles you will get in “drugstore” laxatives if you unwarily seek relief by using a highly advertised proprietary remedy.
Another ingredient of many drugstore laxatives is podophyllum, a potent irritating cathartic. In a recent International Medical Digest, a British doctor noted evidence that this resin caused birth defects in an infant whose mother took a “slimming tablet” containing podophyllum from the fifth to the ninth week of her pregnancy. In regard to podophyllum, Merck’s Index notes that “overdoses may cause vomiting, severe diarrhea…coma, death.”
There is probably no better example of the penalties of departing from the natural principles of physiological therapy than this. We might also recite the story of mineral oil, long sold for its “laxative” effect, now considered so dangerous that its use “should only be considered under the category of toxicology,”3 because of its contribution to cancer alone, cancer of the lower bowel in particular. (The same reference cites the fact that mineral oil promotes hypoprothrombinemia, now known to predispose to coronary thrombosis. Becker cites tests where as much as 60 percent of the mineral oil in an emulsified laxative preparation was absorbed through the intestinal wall, much of it no doubt to lodge permanently in the liver. All quite contrary to the assurances of the makers that it was “harmless.”)
Another dangerous laxative is milk of magnesia. It causes nosebleed; you will find patients complaining of recurrent nosebleed to be users of milk of magnesia. Magnesium hydroxide, like aluminum salts, has a great affinity for phosphorus; can create a phosphorus deficiency and possibly destroy phospholipids. Phospholipids are a necessary component of every cell so any deficiency is too much.
Perspiration deodorants contain aluminum acetate, which paralyzes the nerve endings (by this destruction of the phospholipid nerve insulation) and thereby stops sweat glands from functioning. Lead salts were once used for this purpose. Lead is also a phosphorus robber, quicker acting than aluminum.
Researchers are becoming concerned about the amounts of lead released into the air from automobile exhaust. The poisonous metal is not only contaminating the air, they say, but has been spreading to water, plants, and animals as well.
The physiological story goes back to Dr. Quigley’s analysis of the diet of patients getting treatment for cancer; he says 95 percent suffered from constipation or some form of stomach or intestinal disease.4 He said the average contents of any natural vitamin-supplying factors in their diet was only 8.5 percent, the remainder being white flour products, refined cereals, white sugar, and candy. We must realize that the liver is one of the first organs to crack under such starvation, and liver function no doubt must be impaired before constipation can follow. Dr. Barnett points out the relation of devitaminized foods and constipation, stating that “it is amusing coincidence that certain states legally require that middlings sold for stock feed must not be robbed of their wheat germ.” He also points out that rickets usually involves constipation, and that lemon juice added to the baby formula is a good remedy for constipation.1
Pellagra often begins with constipation, and constipation is associated with vitamin deficiency.5
It would seem then that fresh grown whole wheat (or rye) flour in freshly baked bread is the best physiological remedy for constipation. Or whole wheat muffins, pancakes, or breakfast cereal. We might warn the prospective user of any whole grain product to get fresh ground meal or flour, as the oils oxidize inside of a week, rendering the flour or meal poisonous in effect, rancid cereal oils being destructive to most fat-soluble vitamins. It is very probable that a major contributing cause of cancer is the rancid oils in stale, bleached, and chemicalized flour and cereal products. Wheat-germ oil produced from stale germ was found a definite carcinogen in rat tests.6 Fresh wheat germ oil is considered a preventive of cancer.7 (Refrigeration of whole grain meal slows the oxidation about ten to one.) No wonder men like Dr. Quigley have felt that cancer can be the offspring of constipation.
Considering these facts, it is evident that there is no shortcut to the prevention of constipation by drugs or laxatives. One might as well find a substitute for fresh air. The counterfeit foods like oleo, hydrogenated fats, synthetic sugars (glucose, corn syrup, dextrose); the refined foods like white flour, refined sugar, refined oils, loaded with bleach chemicals (or bleached by filtration through activated carbon, which also removes all vitamins), are examples of the foodless foods we permit in our dietary pattern. They cheat us of health as constipation is only one of the warning signals that we usually ignore or try to subvert.
Whole wheat pancakes for breakfast with real butter and raw honey is one way to solve the constipation problem.
Constipation causes another real danger. The poisons produced can be very pathogenic. Guanidine is one of the poisons suspected to be formed, and it can contribute to the cause of convulsions, arthritis, epilepsy, muscular dystrophy, hypertension, and eclampsia.8
Histamine, another poison released in the bowel, can cause many specific reactions. It is generally known as the offending agent in all allergic reactions. The flora of the bowel is also important as it can be friendly or toxin-producing. We might quote Elvehjem: “We should not ignore the original ideal of Metchnikoff that certain types of bacteria in the alimentary tract may be deleterious, because they destroy certain vitamins or amino acids, or because they produce toxins detrimental to health. As we learn more about intestinal flora we should be able to control both the beneficial and the detrimental types of organisms and to compensate for changes which we cannot control.”9
In this control of the flora of the bowel, the acidophilic group of organisms has long been known as beneficial. The first to be widely used of course is the sour milk bacteria. Then yogurt with its special culture has been much used. Both of these require lactose (milk sugar) for their support. They cannot live on the ordinary carbohydrate forms. Similar organisms have been isolated from a type of yeast that can be supported on ordinary carbohydrates. It converts carbohydrates (starches and sugars) into lactic acid, where baker’s yeast and brewer’s yeast convert them into alcohol and carbon dioxide.
Lactic acid favors other friendly bacteria, blocks the growth of toxin producing organisms, and acts as a control of constipation. In this case we suspect the constipation to be due to guanidine, which would act to produce spastic constipation, whereas an excess of histamine would create atonic constipation and a ballooned colon. This colon condition is considered a predisposing cause of arthritis by some authorities. Guanidine absorbed through such a thinned barrier could cause the calcium deposits of osteoarthritis, arteriosclerosis, and other forms of calcareous infiltration. Guanidine is a specific calcium precipitant in body fluids and is a muscular fatigue poison (end product of overworked muscle). That is why coronary arteries are often calcified, as the only sign of such pathological change in the body. Guanidine is an organic alkaline base, can be formed by bowel bacteria and no doubt only becomes dangerous in states of systemic alkalosis.
Parathyroid hormone is the physiologic regulator of the blood guanidine level. The calcium and guanidine content of body fluids is complementary, so by regulating the guanidine level, the calcium content of the body fluids is maintained at a normal level by the parathyroid gland.
The common syndrome of constipation, calcium deficiency symptoms, and a drift to arthritis is obviously a situation calling for a whole wheat regimen, and raw foods that contain phosphatase (all nuts, bran, and cereals only if uncooked, soaked whole wheat or rye as breakfast cereal, raw fruit and juices, raw vegetables and juices). A change to raw milk alone has cured wheelchair arthritis cases. (But keep in mind the fact that milk, raw or pasteurized, is the commonest offender as an allergen.) Citrus juices are out for the victim of arthritis, unless grown on neutral soil (like the Indian River district of Florida, where seawater seeps in under the trees). Otherwise the alkaline ash aggravates the cooked-food alkalosis. Phosphatase, the enzyme of raw foods and raw milk, provides the free phosphoric acid by splitting phytates in cereals so essential to permit the body chemistry to maintain its acid-alkaline balances. Otherwise the alkaline ash vegetable foods will build up a hyper alkaline state that predisposes to the allergic reactions and arthritis.
Isotonic and Hypertonic Laxatives
Warm physiological salt solution (one teaspoon of table salt in one pint of warm water) will flush out the bowel within an hour, unless the patient is deficient in salt, for otherwise the concentration of salt is equal on both sides of the intestinal tract, and the water or salt cannot be exchanged, and must pass through.
Citrocarbonate is an effervescent salt that can also be used, a heaping teaspoonful to the pint of warm water. It contains the blood inorganic mineral salts in balanced proportion to equal the natural pattern. It is valuable to replace the minerals lost through perspiration in hot weather. These mineral salts are lost because water cannot be diffused out of sweat glands or kidneys without the help of these salts. Osmosis fails to occur, we cannot eliminate water without losing carbamide and sodium chloride. They are necessary to all osmotic transfers.
Epsom salts, Glauber’s salts operate as hypertonic laxatives, hold and attract water into the bowel, but are irritating to a degree, and not physiological and natural components of body fluids.
Disodium phosphate is considered the mildest of such laxatives and is recommended for children in the materia medica texts. It may be considered a natural salt the same as sodium chloride or carbamide. The use of these salts laxatives or “bowel flushes” will be found of varying success, depending on the degree of osmotic balance they meet in the body. If the body is low in any of the components, it will be absorbed and the water retention effect lost, the laxative effect nullified to that extent. Repeating the dosage daily will in time bring on the effect desired, unless some factor like hypothyroidism prevents the action. As we pointed out at the beginning, there is no universal constipation remedy.
- Barnett Sure. The Vitamins in Health and Disease, 54, 166. Williams and Wilkins Co., 1933.
- Mongolism and Cretinism, Sec. Ed., p. 294. Grune and Stratton, 1949.
- “Lesser Known Uses of Thyroid Substance.” Jol. Mich. St. Med. Soc., 49:553–538, 1950.
- George L. Becker, “The Case Against Mineral Oil.” Am. J. Dig. Dis., 10:344–347, 1952.
- T. Quigley, MD. Am. Jol. Roentgenology and Radium Therapy, 24:81, 1935.
- Bicknell and Prescott. The Vitamins in Medicine, pp. 226, 265, 399.
- Rowntree, L.G., et al. “Neoplasms in Albino Rats Resulting from Feeding Ether Extracted Wheat Germ Oil.” Soc. Expert. Biol. & Med., pp. 36, 424, 1937.
- Adamstone, F.B. Path., pp. 31, 722, 1941.
- Gustav, J. Martin. Ion Exchange and Absorption Systems in Medicine, p. 305. Little, Brown & Co., 1954.
- Elvehjem, C.A. Am. Dietetic. Ass., 22:959, 1946.
One of the commonest mistakes is to interpret the demineralization found in elderly women, sometimes with pathologic fractures, as primary calcium, or calcium and vitamin D, deficiency. This may be the cause in some cases, but in most of them the deficiency seems to be related to an endocrine factor accompanying or following menopause. Not all senile demineralization is calcium deficiency, though many patients with senile demineralization would appear to be ideal subjects for such a diagnosis.
Demineralization occurs with chronic illness of various sorts, especially that involving bedrest. Other and usually severer demineralization is seen with parathyroid disease and with chronic nephritis. In these conditions the serum calcium level, instead of being lowered is elevated and phosphatase activity greatly increased.
—J.A.M.A., Vol. 143, p. 1255.
Influence of Vitamin E on Glucose Metabolism
F. Romeo and A. Parrinello (Univ. Messina, Italy), Acta Vitaminol. 8, 129–34, (1954, Italian): Oral administration of vitamin E (200 mg daily for 10 days) lowers the peaks and shortens the plateaus of the blood sugar curves after a loading dose of glucose given to normal and diabetic subjects. Glycosuria in moderate diabetes was greatly decreased or even abolished. An activation of phosphorylation in various tissues (liver, kidneys, muscle, pancreas, etc.) is postulated to account for the role of vitamin E.
—Erich Hirschberg, Chem. Ab., Vol. 48, Nov. 25, 1954 (13852 i)
Money Supposedly Collected for Research?
Funds Raised by Nine Health Agencies (and Amounts Allocated to Research)
|Agency||Funds Raised ($)||Allocated to Research*|
|National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis||18,669,299||2,479,617|
|National Tuberculosis Association||18,665,524||Unknown|
|American Cancer Society||13,221,069||3,300,000|
|American Heart Association||2,502,176||250,000|
|Arthritis and Rheumatism Foundation||222,606||None|
|National Committee for Mental Hygiene||217,624||45,237|
|National Multiple Sclerosis Society||147,967||62,368|
|American Diabetes Association||91,366||300|
|National Association to Control Epilepsy||33,373||8,482|
*Based on a compilation made by the Albert and Mary Lasker Foundation, New York, NY. Figures are for 1948, the latest year available.
In a recent article, “Food for Thought,” the writer states, “Drives to Collect Funds” for research “to conquer” degenerative disease have the same scientific approach as trying to “lock the barn after the horse is stolen.” She further states that people should be taught how to remain healthy and more important, “how to produce healthy children.”
And, as Clinton Miller recently testified before a congressional committee, “Haven’t we been fooling ourselves when we appropriate money for ‘health’ when all along it has been for sickness?” I don’t know of a single study by the National Institutes where they have studied healthy people to find out why they were healthy…We should rename the National Institutes the National Institutes of Sickness.”