Can Cancer Be Cured?

By Dr. Royal Lee

Summary: In this thought-provoking article from 1950, Dr. Royal Lee quotes physician L. Duncan Bulkley to challenge modern medicine’s belief that cancer is a localized disease—the cells of a specific tissue or organ going haywire for no apparent reason—and not, as was widely believed historically, the result of a systemic disorder within the body, such as that caused by a nutritional deficiency. “The present status of the ‘cancer problem,'” Dr. Bulkley opines, “is to decide between two quite opposite positions: First, a hypothetical and problematical view of a local, independent, unexplainable, autonomous decision of certain cells to take on and continue a destructive course—for which immense research has failed entirely to find any reason. Second, the simple and rational belief that a perverted nutrition—perhaps of long standing—influences certain cells to depart from their normal mode of action and take on an abnormal activity, pursuing a malignant and destructive course that is naturally kept up by the continued metabolic disturbance.” Unsurprisingly, Dr. Lee adds, most of the successful alternative treatments of cancer reported at the time involved a radical shift in diet, from one of deficient, processed, chemical-laden products to a regimen of whole, natural, highly-nutrient-dense foods. Dr. Lee even outlines what such a diet might look like, placing particular emphasis on the consumption of raw foods. Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research publication 12-50, 1950.

[The following is a transcription of the original Archives document. To view or download the original document, click here.]

Can Cancer Be Cured?

The answer to that question is in the history of patients who have recovered from cancer, some spontaneously (probably by reason of some change in food intake), some by various methods of treatment. Some of the treatment methods that have apparently caused the elimination of symptoms of cancer are here described: the special diets of Dr. Gerson, the diet plus embryo hormone of Dr. Davidson, the cocaine treatment of Dr. Psota, the glyoxylide of Dr. Koch, and the enzyme treatment of the Drosnes-Lazenby Clinic. We should also mention the fact that the Hoxsey Clinic of Dallas and the Nichols Hospital of Savannah, Missouri, are also successfully treating cancer with escharotics, though [treatment is] limited to carcinomas that are accessible for application of the medication.

This information is offered to help the physician who is trying to save his patient. The measures commonly resorted to—the surgical removal, the radiation therapy, and hospitalization—are not successful enough to completely satisfy the doctor who has the welfare of his patient at heart.

Here is one well-considered opinion of orthodox methods of treatment:

“Many cases of undoubted cancer, both primary and recurrent after operation, are on record [to] have disappeared entirely and remained absent under a complete change of diet and mode of life with more or less of proper medical treatment. Multitudes of cases are known everywhere in which the disease has recurred with terrible severity—followed by death even after the most complete removal by the most competent surgeons—of very early lesions diagnosed as cancer…

“Many surgeons, pathologists, and laboratory workers claim that it is a local disease and that the only possible hope of cure must result from extirpation of the offending mass by surgical removal, X-ray, or radium. This view has been so stoutly maintained and widely promulgated by the surgeons that a good share of the medical profession and laity have accepted it as a fact during the past twenty years, and this line of treatment has been largely followed at the cost of many millions of dollars, much suffering, and very many lives. 

“The older view of the constitutional nature and treatment of cancer has been supported and advocated during the last hundreds of years up to the present time by men of prominence; [yet] medical and surgical [opinion] is exactly the opposite of [this older view]. It is that cancer is a systemic or constitutional disease, of which the lesions commonly called cancer are but the local expressions or products. The recurrences are to be accounted for by the same internal causes that produce the first lesion. The present status of the ‘cancer problem’ is therefore to decide between two quite opposite positions:

“First, a hypothetical and problematical view of a local, independent, unexplainable, autonomous decision of certain cells to take on and continue a destructive course—for which immense research has failed entirely to find any reason. Second, the simple and rational belief that a perverted nutrition—perhaps of long standing—influences certain cells to depart from their normal mode of action and take on an abnormal activity, pursuing a malignant and destructive course that is naturally kept up by the continued metabolic disturbance. We accept this latter position in regard to many other diseases—why not in regard to cancer?” 

(Source: End Results of the Medical Treatment of Cancer by L. Duncan Bulkley, AM, MD, p. 35.) 

Dr. William J. Mayo in 1914 expressed the opinion that cancer was caused by some defect in the food supply of civilized man, including the possibility of too much cooking (“The Prophylaxis of Cancer,” Annals of Surgery, 59:805, June 1914). 

Dr. Quigley reported in 1935 that he was unable to obtain improvement with anticancer measures until he stopped all ingestion of glucose-bearing foods. Glucose is also called corn sugar, corn syrup, dextrose (Amer. Journal Ront. & Rad. Therapy, Vol. 34, No. 1, page 83).

Meat has always been suspected of causing or aggravating the cancer state. Now we find that the nitrites used in preserving cold unrefrigerated meats (ham, sausage, etc.) destroy chymotrypsin. One of the new remedies that has shown promise in cancer is chymotrypsin (Spicer Laboratories, Pasadena, California).

No wonder our best authorities on cancer have advised their patients to use no processed commercial meats, canned goods, refined and devitalized packaged groceries, processed cheese, etcetera, most of which is loaded with glucose, and all of which may contain poisonous preservatives—e.g., sodium benzoate in oleo and processed cheese, oxidizing bleaches that kill vitamins in flour, nitrites in meat, sulfur dioxide in dried fruits, even propionates to stop mold in bread—[in addition to the] carcinogenic artificial color in our butter and oleo. (Butter Yellow, a terribly carcinogenic liver poison, was used for forty years as the exclusive color for butter and oleo. After it was discovered to be cancer causing, new coal tar colors were permitted. Now these are found to be carcinogenic too. See report in Glasgow Medical Journal, July 1949, page 13.)

It is against the federal food and drug law to put poison in any amount whatever in human food. This universal use [of artificial preservatives and colors] is simply an indication that something is very wrong with the law enforcement agencies, who instead of protecting the public health are protecting the food adulterators. See Dr.Wiley’s comments in our reprint from his book of 1930. Write for copy—10¢ each.

To avoid such poisons, physicians must limit the food intake of the cancer patient [as follows]:

  • Bread, pastry, pancakes, etcetera, must be home baked from freshly made whole-grain flour.
  • Fruits must be fresh or, if preserved, must be homemade, without the inclusion of corn sugar or glucose, which are common names for synthetic dextrose—a dangerous adulterant common in candy, commercial bakery and canned goods, and often in dried fruit. Dextrose is used as a cheap filler to add weight. (These competitive adulterations make it very difficult for the processor of honest foods to remain in business. That is why it is so hard to find honest foods in marketplaces.)
  • Meats must be fresh, as must be fowl or fish. Deep-freeze meats are next in rank as wholesome; beef is preferable to most others under similar conditions of age and exposure to atmosphere. Pork is taboo, and all sausage, ham, wieners, etcetera, must be prohibited by reason of their adulteration with nitrates and nitrites, which destroy enzymes in the body after assimilation.
  • Vegetables are all preferably fresh, deep-freeze storage being next best.
  • Diets are set up with as much raw food as possible. This affords invaluable enzymes as well as vitamins that are subject to destruction by heat. [Suggested preparations include] raw whole wheat flour in milkshakes; raw nuts creamed in milk in a liquefier (almonds are best); raw raisins soaked to add to breakfast cereal or put in the liquefied milkshake; raw liver now and then, in the milkshake, liquefied with a little raw fruit or raisins.
  • Avoid any excess of citrus fruits or juices. Fresh-frozen grape juice is the best juice to use. It is high in the antihemorrhagic vitamin P. In fact, the reputed “grape cure” for cancer, we believe, was useful by reason of this factor in the grape.

For some reason unknown to us, the FTC [Federal Trade Commission] has prohibited the sale of the book The Grape Cure of Cancer. The FTC also spent six months on hearings trying to prove that Dr. Koch, of Detroit, was not able to successfully treat cancer but finally dismissed their complaint in view of the incontrovertible evidence offered by Dr. Koch. (Along the lines of the testimony in “Excerpts from Proceedings of the In Camera Sittings Commission of the Province of Ontario, Canada” [sic]. Copy on request.)

An old trick of the Food and Drug Administration operators is to call on the patient of a doctor who is using a treatment or food product they are opposed to and use their governmental prestige to describe such users as a “poor deluded soul” if he believes the use of this remedy or food has resulted in any benefit or cure. This despite the fact that the most reliable assessment of the value of any treatment comes always from the physician who has clinical experience in using it and not from the scientists working with their laboratory animals and out of touch with the practical treatment of human patients.

(Sometimes the right hand does not know what the left hand is doing. While the FTC and FDA of the federal government only consider animal tests as significant in evaluating a treatment or remedy, the U.S. Patent Office will only accept clinical experience on human beings. The board of appeals of the Patent Office has categorically stated that utility of a remedy is not proven by animal tests (J. Pat. Office Soc., December 1943, page 906, “Nature of Proof Required to Show Utility of Pharmaceuticals”).

We wonder what will be the next stage in this campaign to discredit every new approach to disease (especially when it relates to nutrition), which is inadvertently or otherwise aided by organized medicine and the FTC and FDA of the federal government and results in benefits only, we believe, to the food adulterators and synthetic drug interests.

By Royal Lee. Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research, 1950. 

Publication 12-50
Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research
Milwaukee 3, Wisconsin

Patrick Earvolino, CN

Patrick Earvolino is a Certified Nutritionist and Special Projects Editor for Selene River Press, Inc.

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