Thoreau, Pulmonary Tuberculosis, and Dietary Deficiency

By Benjamin P. Sandler, MD

Summary: In this provocative letter to the editor of the medical journal Chest, Dr. Benjamin Sandler speculates whether the death of famous American author Henry David Thoreau, who died of tuberculosis at the age of 45, might have been the result of malnutrition he suffered during his years living on Walden Pond. Specifically, Dr. Sandler points to the lack of quality protein and excess of carbohydrate foods in Thoreau’s diet as probable causes behind his infection. 1973.

Those “New Foods” Can Kill You

By Jack Denton Scott

Summary: In this 1956 article from the popular magazine American Mercury, author Jack Scott warns the public of the toxic stew that accompanies each bite of the modern diet. DDT and DES lead the list of hundreds of chemicals contaminating America’s food supply, either coming from the farm or added by food processors. With regulation of these chemicals admittedly lax (see “The Peril on Your Food Shelf” by congressman James Delaney, chairman of the House Committee to Investigate the Use of Chemicals in Food Products during the 1950s), the American public had become one giant guinea pig colony for the alliance between the chemical and food industries. Articles like these led to the popular revolt in the 1960s and ’70s against commercially grown foods and the phony health experts paid by the food industry to assure America that it was the best-fed nation in the world with the safest food supply. From American Mercury, 1956. Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research reprint 89.

Three Opinions of the “Death Food” Propaganda

By Dr. Royal Lee, Herbert C. White, and Arnold P. Yerkes

Summary: The Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research reprinted these three articles by leading natural-health authorities of the time to counter the “America is the best fed nation on earth” propaganda coming from government agencies and the commercial food industries. From soil destruction and depletion to food processing and synthetic vitamins, the three authors cogently expose the frauds, lies, and myths perpetrated by the “death-food industry,” so described by Royal Lee. Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research special bulletin 1-52, 1952. Multiple original sources.

Topics in Vol. 8, No. 8: Vitamins (Part II), Nutritionist Ties Carbs to Atherosclerosis Development, An Exciting Story in the Constant Battle for Life Revealed by Electron Microscope

The following is a transcription of Dr. Royal Lee’s Applied Trophology newsletter, originally published by Standard Process Laboratories. Contents in Volume 8, Number 8 (August 1964): Vitamins (Part II), reprinted in two parts from Meyler’s Side Effects of Drugs, Nutritionist Ties Carbohydrates to Atherosclerosis Development, An Exciting Story in the Constant Battle for Life Revealed […]

Trace Elements Experiments Here Turning Up Some Amazing Results

By Tom A. Ellis

Summary: A newspaper account of a gathering of nationally known nutritionists and soil experts discussing the effects of trace-element deficiency on the health of soil, plants, livestock, and humans. Among the scientists attending were Dr. William Albrecht, the soil expert from the University of Missouri who’s been called the father of organic farming, and Dr. Francis Pottenger, Jr., whose famous cat-feeding experiments showed conclusively that the effects of malnutrition are passed on to subsequent generations. Several studies are discussed, showing the positive clinical effect of supplying trace elements to livestock and humans deficient in them and suggesting that the true cause of these deficiencies is a lack of trace elements in the soil in which the plants eaten by the animals and humans grew. These early experiments show clearly the critical nutritional role of trace minerals in the cycle of life. From the Springfield Daily News and Reader, Missouri. Reprint 92, 1949.

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.

Treatment of Tuberculosis with a Low-Carbohydrate Diet

By Dr. Benjamin P. Sandler and Dr. R. Berke

Summary: Dr. Benjamin Sandler, a former United States naval surgeon, studied for decades two of his era’s most devastating infectious diseases: polio (a viral infection) and tuberculosis (a bacterial one). In both cases he found that a low-carbohydrate diet was the best treatment and prevention for the disease. In this brief, Sandler reports that in ten tuberculosis patients treated with a low-carb diet, “digestive, cardiac, respiratory, nervous and mental symptoms were rapidly relieved and relief was sustained” in each subject. Sandler’s findings have been echoed in recent years in diet trials testing low-carbohydrate diets, in which subjects invariably exhibit improvement in biomarkers such as triglycerides, HDL cholesterol, and blood pressure. From American Revue of Tuberculosis, 1942.

Trophopathic Diseases (or Systemic Nutritional Disturbances) as Reflected in the Mouth

By Grant H. Laing, MD

Summary: An excellent ten-page review of the signs of malnutrition that dentists routinely and literally overlook. The early nutrition pioneers, many of them dentists, knew full well that malnutrition creates specific lesions in the oral cavity. This article from the Fortnightly Review of the Chicago Dental Society is one of the earliest papers presented on the subject. The editor’s note, written by an MD, still applies today: “At first glance this article…appears to be completely foreign to dentistry. However, we assure our readers that if they will but read it, they will be fascinated by it.” Note: Trophopathic means “due to derangement of nutrition,” a term we should hear more often given that malnutrition is the primary cause of most degenerative disease. Reprint 51, 1949.

Unusual Meats: How to Prepare and Serve Them

By Flora L. Carl and Letha K. Jopling

Summary: During World War II, it was most important that people knew how to get more nutrition and value out of livestock. This informative, instructional document discusses the preparation and nutritional value of organs such as brains, sweetbreads (thymus and pancreas), liver, kidney, heart, pigs’ feet, tongue, and spleen. (Such organs, it’s worth noting, are richer in vitamins and minerals than muscle meat, which is why many tribal societies prized them above all). Recipes include Liver With Bacon, Kidney Stew, Bone Marrow on Toast, and Oxtail Soup. From the Agricultural Extension Service of the College of Agriculture at the University of Missouri. Reprint 38A, 1943.

USDA on the Allowance of Chemical Additives in Food

By R.W. Dunlap, Assistant Secretary of the USDA

Summary: If you’re looking for a smoking gun regarding the chemical adulteration of food in America, this is it. In this 1925 letter to President Calvin Coolidge, the acting secretary of the U.S. Department of Agrculture (USDA) admits that the department cannot legally prevent the addition of chemical additives of unknown safety to America’s food supply. The reason, he says, is that certain federal courts pronounced such chemicals acceptable if no evidence of harm is shown in people who consume foods containing small amounts of them. Not only did the courts’ decisions put the onus of proving long-term ill effects of suspected poisons squarely on the government, but with such evidence nearly impossible to show conclusively and requiring years of study (the technology for which not even existing at the time), the basic policy of food adulteration in America was set: to err on the side of commerce, not public health. As the secretary points out, the opposing, “better safe than sorry” policy of Dr. Harvey Wiley—the former head of the USDA’s Bureau of Chemistry (forerunner of the FDA) who publicly criticized the federal rulings as violating the 1906 Pure Food and Drug Act passed by Congress—would simply not stand up in court, where the decision to allow deleterious additives into the food supply had been finagled into law. 

V.E. Irons Conviction Upheld for Warning Americans About Soil and Food Supply

By Dr. Royal Lee

Summary: Dr. Lee comments on a report in the Drug Trade News on the upholding of a conviction of naturalist V.E. Irons. (For details on Irons’s original trial and conviction, see “The Irons Frame-up (Its Whys and Wherefores)” by Morris Bealle.) According to Lee, Irons was convicted essentially for publicizing this statement: “Nearly everyone in this country is suffering from malnutrition or [is] in danger of such suffering because of demineralization and depletion of soils and the refining and processing of food.” While this statement was supported time and time again by early nutrition studies, Irons nonetheless served a year in jail for his proclamation, which, Lee points out, was made in the same spirit of Dr. Harvey Wiley, the original head of the FDA who was ousted by representatives within the government influenced by the food-manufacturing and medical industries. 1957.

Various Oils and Fats as Substitutes for Butterfat in the Ration of Young Calves

By T.W. Gullickson, F.C. Fountaine, and J.B. Fitch

Summary: Cream, which is used to make butter, is a much more valuable product than a refined vegetable oil. As a result, farmers of the mid-twentieth century got in the bad habit of skimming the cream off their milk to make butter for consumers and then combining the skimmed milk with a vegetable oil to feed to their calves. Gullickson and his colleagues report on an experiment in which they fed calves skim milk homogenized with butter, lard, corn oil, cottonseed oil, and soybean oil. Their findings were what one would expect in replacing a natural, whole food with a refined, processed one: “The results as measured in terms of rate of gain in weight, physical appearance and general well-being of calves indicated clearly the superior nutritive value of butterfat over all the other fats and oils tested.” Practices like the one described here, so longstanding in American food manufacturing that they’re taken as “normal,” go a long way to explain the rampant rates of degenerative disease in the United States. From the Journal of Dairy Science. Reprint 138, 1942.

Vitamin E

By Franklin Bicknell, MD, and Frederick Prescott, PhD

Summary: A few pages about vitamin E from the classic text The Vitamins in Medicine. This authoritative book, which featured over 4500 references, was originally published in 1942, and in 1953 the Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research published its third edition. In this excerpt, Bicknell and Prescott give some critical information not generally known about vitamin E. For instance, while chemists long ago declared vitamin E to be the single compound alpha-tocopherol, the authors, like Dr. Lee and many of the other early nutritionists, thought differently: “While alpha-tocopherol means one distinct substance,” they write, “vitamin E may mean either alpha-tocopherol or a mixture of this and other similar substances.” Other gems about vitamin E are packed into these few pages, which go a long way to combat the poor level of understanding of nutrition’s “most misunderstood vitamin.” From The Vitamins in Medicine, 1953.

Vitamin E Versus Wheat Germ Oil

By Ezra Levin

Summary: The author of this report founded Viobin Corp, which developed wheat germ oil concentration methods. Fully referenced, the article declares that there is far more to wheat germ oil than alpha-tocopherol and that the effect delivered by natural vitamin E depends on much more than the isolated tocopherol. For instance, Levin writes, “It appears that, for the first time, evidence has been presented of the presence in wheat germ oil of a factor that exerts a beneficial effect in neuromuscular disturbances other than vitamin E [i.e., tocopherol].” Levin’s claims support Dr. Royal Lee’s contention that vitamins are synergistically combined complexes and not isolated chemicals. “For many years,” he adds, “we in our laboratory have suggested that research workers, in reporting their work. make a sharp distinction between vitamin E [tocopherol] and wheat germ oil. [The neuromuscular study] makes such differentiation imperative.” From the American Journal of Digestive Diseases, 1945. Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research reprint 9.

Vitamin F and Carbamide in Calcium Metabolism

By Dr. Royal Lee

Summary: An important article about two of the most overlooked nutritionally and biochemically essential substances in the human body. The roles of carbamide (a.k.a. urea) in denaturing proteins—and thus reducing their antigenicity—and of vitamin F (fatty acid complex) in defusing calcium bicarbonate (ionized calcium) into the cell fluids are virtually lost on orthodox medicine. Yet holistic doctors have repeatedly discovered this article since its publication in 1946 and been amazed at the clinical efficacy of the applied knowledge it presents. From Journal of the National Medical Society. Reprint 20, 1946.

Vitamin F in the Treatment of Prostatic Hypertrophy

By James Pirie Hart and William LeGrande Cooper, MD

Summary: One of the most sought after documents ever produced by the Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research. This is a clinical study on the effect of vitamin F in reversing prostate enlargment, complete with blood work, charts of outcomes, and excellent references. “For a considerable time we have been using an oral vitamin F complex preparation for the control of the common cold,” the authors explain. “This treatment has been used quite successfully in Europe for several years. During the courses of treatment with this preparation it was noticed that in certain male patients who were being treated concurrently for prostatic hypertrophy, there was a sudden notable decrease in the palpable size and consistency of the prostate gland.” Along with this reduction in size and symptoms of prostatic hypertrophy, subjects experienced an average increase in blood iodine levels of 307% and an average increase of blood phosphorous of 8.3%. Tissue calcium also increased as blood calcium decreased by 11% on average. The authors conclude, “The principles of vitamin F therapy in prostatic hypertrophy were demonstrated subjectively and objectively through diminished residual urine, reduction of size of prostate, disappearance of pain and discomfort, reduction of nocturia, and marked increase in sexual libido.” 1941.

Vitamin F: 1926–1957

View PDF: Vitamin F Research 1926 to 1957 1926 Boissevain, C.H. “The Action of Unsaturated Fatty Acids on Tubercle Bacilli.” Boissevain reports experiments showing the effect of unsaturated fatty acids on the virulence of tubercle bacilli in vitro. (Compare with the work of Larsen on the ricinoleates.) Linoleic and linolenic acids were among the most […]

Vitamin U Therapy of Peptic Ulcer

By Garnett Cheney, MD

Summary: While it was never accepted as a vitamin by the FDA, “vitamin U” from raw cabbage juice was successfully used by pioneering holistic physicians in the treatment of stomach ulcers. Here Dr. Cheney gives some background and clinical applications of this officially unaccepted vitamin in a presentation before the 80th Annual Session of the California Medical Association in 1951. This file includes a supplementary document from a 1957 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association on the subject of cabbage juice for digestive problems. From California Medicine. Reprint 91, 1952.

Vitamins and Their Relation to Deficiency Diseases of the Alimentary Tract

By Edward A. Johnston, MD

Summary: This excellent report, a reprint from the Journal of the American College of Proctology, starts with a clear description of the all-important connection between vitamin complexes (as they are found in whole foods) and the endocrine system. “When we consider that vitamins in the food are the substances with which the endocrines are able to secrete their active principles, it is apparent that a glandular insufficiency may take place in the absence of vitamins….All of the ductless glands, the thyroid, parathyroid, thymus, pineal body, pituitary, adrenals, gonads, pancreas, islets of Langerhans, and spleen must have one or more of the vitamins in order to secrete their vital fluids, and if deprived of the vitamins, will atrophy and cease to function.” Such events, Dr. Johnston says, are obviously bound to weaken the body and make it more susceptible to disease. “Stomach ulcers are probably the best instance of bacterial invasion primarily due to a lowered resistance resulting from a vitamin deficiency. Other instances of vitamin A deficiency, and often found in conjunction with infections of the intestinal tract, are infections of the eyes, tonsils, sinuses, lungs, buccal and lingual mucosa, and the skin.” This is the Royal Lee philosophy writ large. From Journal of the American College of Proctology, circa 1940. Lee Foundation of Nutritional Research reprint 2.

Vitamins Are Not Drugs!

By Dr. Simon Benson

Summary: Dr. Benson of the Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research responds to an article titled “Are Vitamins Drugs?” in the trade journal The Apothecary. Benson clearly lays out the differences between the therapeutic application of food and food-based vitamins and the use of pharmaceutical medicines. He refutes medical dogma that insists that anything used therapeutically is automatically classified as a drug. (This definition, of course, conveniently puts any substance being used therapeutically under regulatory control of the FDA, even if it’s food.) This is an early and strong defense of natural approaches to healthcare and the freedom of physicians to treat their patients as they see fit, without government interference on behalf of trade groups such as the pharma/medical cartel. From The Apothecary, 1946. Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research reprint 25.