Vitamins and Medicine (S1091) – Full Video


Music Reality Captured in user friendly symbols and processed for understanding. Music The Idea Channel Well, Richard and Gladys, I’m happy to be able to carry on a conversation with you because there’s a question that I think is really very important that I’d like to have your opinions about. I believe that there’s the possibility that the medical system in the United States, and perhaps everywhere, can be changed for the better in a really remarkable way- so that there’s better medical care for everybody and at lower cost if we make use of vitamin supplements and other nutritional supplements in the right way. After all, the vitamins and the essential amino acids and essential fats are all pretty cheap compared with drugs for example. I read about drugs, new drugs that cost 600 dollars per week, per patient for the treatment and others even more then that, a 1000 dollars a week for the patients. And remember that the vitamin C that I take, 18 grams a day, costs me less than a can of Coca Cola, half as much, in fact, because it only costs 2 cents a gram. I take 18 grams, 18,000 milligrams a day, that’s only 36 cents for vitamin C and about the same amount for the other vitamins and nutrients that I take. So, I think there are really great possibilities here. For one thing, why is medical care so expensive? I think it is largely because there are diseases that most people suffer from before death that are debilitating diseases such that the person is not able to work any longer, gets retired for disability, doesn’t contribute to the work of the world and the way that he or she had been doing. And the treatment of this debilitating disease is also apt to be very expensive, surgical treatment, medical treatment, drugs and care. It’s much better, I think, for people to be in good health, not debilitated, finally after the passage of time begin to get weak as our bodies wear out and finally, as many old people do, just to die quietly. This doesn’t cause nearly so much grief as when a young person dies. And, in particular, if there hasn’t been the period of debility, of course I am convinced that by proper use of vitamin C, the other vitamins, amino acids, coenzymes, substances normally in the present in the human body, people can be put in much better health so that many of the diseases that cause debility and death would be prevented for a long period of time. People would be able to lead happy lives and finally there comes the time when they die, but without too great suffering. So I think that we are missing a great opportunity here… that the medical profession because of a bias that it has, is perhaps for the most part, responsible. Nutritionists too, to some extent. Well, you know, the medical profession is trained to cure illness. I mean they don’t go through medical school to prevent illness; they go through medical school to learn to cure illness. And that’s, as you say, has driven our whole medical system I think and that’s why it’s so enormously expensive. This huge proportion, what proportion is it of the health care budget that’s spent in the last 30 days of life. I don’t know the percentage of it, but it is high. In a recent article of the JAMA, I recall that where cancer treatment was concerned, they broke it down into leukemic, hematologic cancer versus solid tumors and the price of a year of life was somewhere for the solid tumors I think was $80,000 and for the leukemia it was 120. Then they spilled it out again and it turned out four times that much. The figures were complicated enough. I didn’t take it further. Unless I got to a $100,000 I felt that was sufficient to bankrupt the country. And I didn’t really want to have myself see that $480,000 figure that I also recall as it’s flashing through my mind. You know, I don’t criticize physicians who are practicing medicine. I think they’re doing the right things. The policy that a physician does not think about methods of treatment for a patient, after the patient has been diagnosed as having a certain disease then the thing to do is to treat the patient in the way that the whole medical establishment has decided is the right way. That I think is a correct policy. Professor Addis, Tom Addis, at Stanford Medical School said many years ago that a physician shouldn’t think about the treatment of this patient. If he thinks, then since the process of radiosemination is not perfect, he may make a mistake which could be catastrophic for the patient. So the thing to do is to treat the patient in the way that the whole body of medical people have decided is the right way. I agree. I don’t simply because the missing link in medical practice today is medical nutrition. And the body medicus, corpus medicus is lacking even the wherewithal ideologically to look in the right places for answers that make a tremendous difference in the outcome, both for prevention and for- I wouldn’t say cure- but for remediation for treatment. Well, of course, I agree with you on that. I knew you would. But what you were saying is that medical nutrition needs to be brought into the mainstream of medical treatment. Well in the same book…in which Tom Addis made this statement about the desirability that physicians treat their patients in the approved way. He was also trying to get the medical profession to adopt a different way of treating patients with kidney disease. So you are saying, I would say, you are saying that you don’t- well, you said you did disagree- but I would say I don’t think you disagree with me that physicians should not experiment on their patients. What you’re saying is that the medical establishments need to accept a new point of view about what is proper for the prevention and treatment of disease. Yes, I don’t like to … I think it’s not productive to take the point of view that they need to do this, or they need to do that, because they will do what they will do- and so I want to think about what can we do, what data can we provide, or what approaches can we take or who can we seek to influence that will open their minds to these ideas? I mean it’s no good saying they ought to do this. It’s obvious to us; therefore, it ought to be obvious to them. I don’t really dispute your position in theory. In practice, my mind flashes back to Dr. Michael Sporn who was at one time titled the Chief of Research at the National Cancer Institute. In the 1970s he made a quote which is I’m probably guessing paraphrased, but it was something to the point that a single multi-vitamin is the best health insurance in America today. And at that time that was a rather daring statement. And I think he was referring particularly to his fascination with the usefulness of vitamin A in cancer prevention which by now is an agreed upon fact in course for epithelial tumors affecting the lung, the GI tract and the urinary tract in particular as well as skin. But not much has been done about it. In fact, perhaps, the first real breakthrough in that direction took an almost scandal to achieve acceptance in the- shall we say the health establishment- the rule making bodies at the top of the American, medical, political system namely folic acid as a preventative for birth defects coming as it does decades after the initial studies were already quite impressive in England were well-known. So what I’m saying is certain kinds of mountain peak, you know high point data are well-known already and well- known, in fact, to our colleagues in positions of academic and political power. But so far, there has been a great resistance implementing this data. I disagree. I mean at least if I understand you, I think that there’s- there’s a position that one feels like a good scientist if one says the data are not clear yet and we shouldn’t take action until the data are incontrovertible. And that’s why all of this business about clinical trials, you know, has clinical trials have become the (test) now for what constitutes adequate evidence. I applaud clinical trials, although I think there are some areas where we can’t do clinical trials, really, realistically. Well, with your statement this reminds me of the flash of insight that I had around 25 years ago. Good, tell us about that. And this is the realization which was quite a surprise to me that there is a great difference between vitamins and drugs. The drugs are toxic substances. They may attack the cancer cells, but they damage all the other cells in the body, and the policy- which I think was quite a proper one- was that if a patient in serious danger of dying from a disease then you should… and there’s a drug that is known to have some effectiveness against a disease, and almost certainly the drug will be more effective the larger the amount is given. Then you give the patient an amount which isn’t enough to kill him or her by the toxicity, but comes close to it, in order to have the best chance of saving the life of the patient. And the insight that struck me suddenly 25 years ago was that vitamins aren’t toxic. There’s no known toxicity to vitamin C. People have taken a quarter of a pound a day, day after day for months or years without having any serious side effects for example… and other vitamins too are essentially free of toxicity. So then I thought, as I kept thinking about the attitude of the nutritional authorities and the medical authorities, I thought I think I understand what was going on in their heads fifty years ago. Here we have a drug that perhaps helps to control a particular disease. Many of these drugs are quite specific with respect to the diseases that the drug controls. And we know how much of the drug should be given to the patient. You don’t want to kill the patient from the toxicity of the drugs, so we have found out how much. And this determines what we the medical authorities tell physicians all over the country to do. What about vitamin C? Well vitamin C prevents scurvy, keeps people from dying of scurvy. We know that. We know what its value is. And we know that a little pinch, five or ten milligrams per day, is enough for most people to keep them from dying of scurvy. And so we’ll recommend, the RDAs recommended an allowance of vitamin C, dietary allowance you get it in your foods as an amount that will prevent almost every person in ordinary health from developing scurvy. So the idea that very much larger amounts of vitamin C or other vitamins could have great value in preventing other diseases or as an adjunct to appropriate conventional therapy in treating other diseases. I think this idea just didn’t occur to them because at that time there wasn’t evidence about drugs. A drug for one disease might also have value for some other diseases. So the result was that for 50 years, the nutritionists and physicians, the leaders in medicine, kept saying the vitamins are very important. You must take the recommended amount to keep from dying of the corresponding deficiency diseases. And larger intakes have no value against any disease. Only recently. Yeah, I never thought of that. So that- it’s just the opposite philosophy with drugs- where they give basically close to the maximum tolerated dose if it’s a drug. But they give close to the minimum possible effective level if it’s a vitamin. That’s interesting. A vitamin, that’s right, yes. And, of course, part of the reason that it’s a practical one, I remember a member of the committee in England that sets the recommended amounts of vitamins, set them at a dose considerably smaller then what he, himself, thought would do the best good for the people. He said if we were to recommend the amounts that I think would be of most value to most people, this would be a catastrophe because the people in England couldn’t get these amounts. It would require a complete revolution in the eating habits of the British. That brings us back to the concept of preventative medicine in public health. By and large, we don’t think as much in practice about preventive medicine and public health in a big way, because the big things ostensibly have been done. Sanitation have been set in place. Food inspection have been set in place. Pre-World War II, the food enrichment program and the fortification programs which were intended to prevent further possibility of deficiency disease have been set into place in this country each of these involving a large, political, economic, regulatory movement. And your colleague is pointing out that to do the same for optimal doses rather than merely minimal doses. In fact they used to call it the minimal daily allowances as opposed to recommended daily allowances. And here the orthomolecular concept is the optimal dose for the needs of the individual- these would be the genetics, the illness at hand if there is one and the lifestyle requirements. And, in fact, then we get back to people like me who are in the front lines working one on one or in groups teaching people what we know of health maintenance at a personal level. Well it’s up to us to help them to motivate to take care of themselves individually and bury these orthomolecular doses. Well, 25 years ago I thought- when I had this idea and thought all I need to do is look in the literature and I’ll find out what the optimum intakes are. But when I looked in the literature, I couldn’t find anything about the optimum intakes. And of course, this is the reason that for nearly 25 years I’ve been spending a lot of my time essentially trying to find out what amounts of these substances people ought to take. And this raises a question that I’d like to ask you about, Gladys. During the last five years, say, the nutritional authorities to some extent and the medial authorities too- have changed. They have changed from saying high doses of vitamins have no value against the common cold or other diseases to saying we know now that a higher intake of vitamins, for example the three important antioxidants; vitamin C, vitamin E and beta carotene, have protected effect against cancer. We have much information about that. And so, this information is now included in some of the official statements that are made. And then these authorities go on to say so we recommend that you search out the foods that are high in these substances and buy and eat those foods. But don’t take vitamin supplements. I know. Now why? Why do they say that? Well, I think there’s a real justification. I’m not saying I support it. And I always when I’m interviewed say yes eat your fruits and vegetables, but you know, vitamin supplements are probably okay, too. I’m moderate that way because I think that’s the only way we can begin to open up people’s minds. You know I say it very modestly because… well by saying things like, I think vitamin supplements are okay as opposed to saying I think everybody ought to take 10 grams. Because I don’t think- you know, you have to do these in stages little by little. I don’t think anybody is ready to hear you ought to take large doses. But at any rate that was a sort of an aside. Well you are a real authority on the value of foods that are rich in certain vitamins for their prophylactic effect especially. Right, right. And so I was going to say that to give them their due, the studies show that foods supplying until about now really, all the studies have said it’s foods that supply high levels of X, Y, and Z that are protective. So people who eat a lot of fruits and vegetables do- without a question in my mind- have a lower risk of cancer. But then people will say well you don’t know for sure that it’s the vitamin C, because a lot of things come along in foods. You don’t know for sure that it’s a beta carotene because there are hundreds of carotenoids in foods. So there’s some merit to what they’re saying. I think that we can’t tell for sure. I happened to be completely convinced. You know you can’t tell for sure that it’s the vitamin C that’s doing it. The reason I think that’s a valid argument is because a lot of people are hot on beta carotene and they say beta carotene is what prevents this, that, and the other thing. Well what I believe is that beta carotene is mainly a marker for vitamin C, frankly. And so, if I can make that argument about beta carotene I’ve got to give them the right to make that argument about vitamin C. Yes well, in a sense well- I can’t say that I agree. There’s one point that I want to mention. You mention 10 grams of vitamin C which I recommend say, at least for some people. I think that an ordinary vitamin, mineral supplement containing just the RDAs improves the health of people a great deal. I do too. I absolutely agree. So that means taking an extra RDA. But then I would go on to say if you take ten times that amount, you’d get an additional improvement and an additional protective effect. Or if you take fifty times that amount, three grams a day, three thousand milligrams a day of vitamin C, you get still more value if you go to a hundred or two hundred or three hundred times. This isn’t enough for every nutrient. I’m just talking about vitamin C. And then you get some additional effect. Well now, can we recommend that every person in the United States take ten grams of vitamin C a day? What’s your opinion about that? Okay, do you actually recommend that everybody take ten grams of vitamin C a day? Well, what I recommend is that every adult person, every adult take three grams of vitamin C per day or more…3- 18 grams a day of vitamin C and take also good amounts of certain other vitamins and other nutrients. And so there’s also a practical problem. I’m not sure about the production of vitamin C. If everyone suddenly were to take 10 grams a day- Well, the same goes for fruits and vegetables. Well, it’s a comfort to see that Enstrom in his epidemiologic study which you’re both familiar with, found a six year bonus in longevity and that population that averaged an extra, roughly, I think it was 380 milligrams, so that while you may have additional benefits, the research that hasn’t been done is exactly what you’re calling for, have been calling for since the very first which is a search for optimal dose and perhaps a cost benefit kind of an analysis where do you have benefits here versus cost there and then applying this across the large population for some people who may have adverse responses and most common, of course, being an unpleasant bowel reaction to larger doses of vitamin C. I’ve seen it myself- in some of patients at doses as low as 2 grams a day. So it’s not something that you’ll be popular with everyone at doses you’re thinking of. Well you don’t, so you got to use common sense as you should with anything. You know, if it gives you loose bowels, don’t take as much. It seems pretty simple to me. Well said… but there we are. We’re doing two things that are really unprecedented in world history, in world medical history in particular. We’re pointing out to ourselves and to others that for the first time in history, we actually know enough about applied biochemistry to be able to provide for people a better deal. That they’re actually through something as simple as taking a pill, maybe even a single pill, able to extend life and health and well-being considerably at a low cost and at almost zero adverse risk. That’s rather profound. But even that requires salesmanship because people need to be able to- there are people that won’t take that pill. And then the question comes to is: Is there another way to deliver vitamin C? Is it ethical or right in view of our after thoughts, for example, on putting iron into food? Right, that was supposed to be the thing to do back in the 1930s and 40s. We look at it now fifty years later and realize we’re overloading some people through a lifetime of iron supplementation causing adverse results probably. Could we change our minds about vitamin C after all? That’s all I’m saying here. And so, on the public health question there are if, ands and buts. It’s very reassuring to see Roger Chandra with a beautiful study showing a vitamin C of taking 80 milligrams but in a context of a low dose multivitamin that also included about 1500 units of vitamin A and other supportive nutrients, a multivitamin lacking only manganese as far as I can see. And he showed right there a 50% reduction in infectious disease across the board in people over age 65, average age of 74. Remarkable study because it did exactly what, it took that lower level and showed even a little bit of a supplement. But now not just a single vitamin but combined food factors provided a major bonus in well-being and health in resistance- I think that’s really important to say because unfortunately and unjustifiably I think Dr. Pauling’s name has gotten associated with one vitamin, but it’s clearly not one vitamin that’s the only thing that’s important. And it’s important, I think, and this study is one of a number of studies now coming out that suggests a multivitamin that has a lot of other vitamins in it actually has health benefits. Nature packaged all these things together and we shouldn’t forget that. You know they interact with each other. Vitamin C improves the way vitamin E works and so on. They interact with each other. So I think it’s important for people to realize that there is an array of vitamins and that basically our whole nutritional status needs to be improved. But the skeptics and the resistance among the conventional ‘Ortho-Docs’ d-o-c-s, the ‘orthodocs’ will say that people are getting their combined nutrients in food. Why do they need the extra expense and inconvenience of pills? What do we tell them? Well, what we tell them is the research that I’ve looked at in national surveys. Yeah, I teach a course called “Undernutrition in the United States” because I’m so tired of hearing that our problem is over nutrition and that everybody, you know, we seem to get enough already and it’s okay. Now indeed, there are large segments of the population that don’t even get the RDA and the three of us at any rate agree that at least for most nutrients, the RDA is probably not optimal. Do you think doctors believe that? We’re talking about the 6 or 700,000 practicing physicians in America. Do they believe that? They may not believe it, but they could be persuaded with data, you know. That’s why I think we ought to show them the data over and over again- that look people really actually don’t get all of these nutrients in diet that you think they’re getting in diet. We did a study in which we looked at how many people eat their fruits and vegetables in a survey of 12,000 people in the United States, big representative survey and the National Cancer Institute recommends five servings of fruits and vegetables a day, 9% of the population on any given day gets five servings of fruits and vegetables a day. So it’s 9% of us. Well on those five servings they would get their 300 or 400 milligrams of vitamin C. At least give them their Enstrom bonus. I was very pleased with the response that Jim Enstrom’s paper got last year when it was published because usually the establishment has tried to downgrade any reports of this sort. Well, that was such an excellent epidemiological paper that there was very little negative response. After all, it were the 11,348 subjects and followed for ten years with an analysis of factors that might interfere with the investigation or, perhaps, decreased the probability that the conclusion could be accepted and as you say it has involved something like 350 milligrams of vitamin C a day, six times the RDA and not large amounts from my point of view. And that was the first study that showed definitely that in addition to eating a good diet, taking extra vitamin C helped to extend the period well-being. Well it was mortality, the length of life, in this case, by about six years, mainly because of the decrease in the mortality from cardiovascular disease, but to somewhat smaller extent to decrease the mortality from cancer and diabetes and other diseases. So it’s very encouraging that there were only, I think, two groups that got out health letters to university departments of nutrition that came out with derogatory statements, trying to convince people that you shouldn’t believe that the results of that instruments is [unintelligible]. Because of that kind of resistance, however, in actual clinical practice where you might see, I call it putting nutrition first as a strategy for medical practice. The first step is to measure nutrients in a practical way. This can be done rather inexpensively now using a panel testing for vitamins and a second lab that does a panel testing for minerals, whether it’s in red blood cells or in leukocytes or in urine. So it requires, actually, more than one channel to be reasonably sure of the interpretation as it happens. But nevertheless, the measuring of nutrients is helpful because it is accurate and it is available, and it is relatively inexpensive and when you find something wrong you can fix it. I think that’s extremely important because doctors believe in blood tests, you know. They don’t believe in this sort of lightweight, unimportant dietary stuff, but they believe in blood tests. And I think if we can only persuade doctors just to measure plasma levels of vitamin C and plasma levels of vitamin E, I think that would be the beginning of a revolution because they would see that there are patients who come in with chronic diseases, have lower levels. That they could bring the levels up and they would see benefits. I really feel if we could just get doctors to measure they would start opening up. Agreed, but as it happens now, measuring the nutrients is a good, opening gambit in medical practice, coming after the history. I have done measurement, documentation. But in the present, political climate, in the political economic climate of medicine, this can be considered excessive prescribing of laboratory services, unnecessary service and in expense it could be charged back to the doctor even. Right at this very moment there’s a doctor colleague that Dr. Pauling knows of in New York who- Dr. Levin who has been found against by the New York Medical Board on this very type of practice. So that there is considerable- shall we say politely- controversy on this subject. Sure. And this kind of controversy scares doctors, naturally, who then hold back and wait for someone else to say it’s okay. Not only okay, but maybe even required to be the standard of care for good medicine. Let’s take vitamin A, for example. It’s very well documented by double blind studies in 1979, Dr. Ben Cohen, surgical gynecology and obstetrics. He did a pre-surgical mega dose for week, vitamin A supplementation at 300 to 450,000 units of vitamin A and with a comparison group on placebo. The comparison group, postoperatively, had a 40% drop in their lymphocyte counts; the vitamin A groups which, by the way, was considered normal. The vitamin A group had a 50% increase in their lymphocyte counts. Now this data has not been utilized, as far as I know, at all. People are still talking, I don’t mean to not appreciate vitamin C. But here, again, we have a double blind study and a vitamin that is critical for wound healing, for resistance to infection… well-known for its anti-cancer preventative and even restorative effects. And it’s the- not only the stepchild, it’s kind of the black sheep of the vitamin family because all you hear about vitamin A is how bad it is for you- as if there were some epidemic of vitamin A toxicity. No, but I do think it’s important in this conversation for us to make sure that it’s understood that vitamin A is one of the relatively few vitamins for which there can be toxicity. And, therefore, it should be measured. Right. Because it’s also the premiere, therapeutic agent as your first line. Not your second or third line, not nutrition last, nutrition first, orthomolecular first. Dr. Pauling… way back- when did you first get interested in vitamin C and how did that happen? Well, I became interested in vitamins to some extent in the 1930s because I brought to Pasadena some member of our chemistry department, the man who had determined the structure of vitamin B1, thiamine and the method of synthesizing it. And that was the first vitamin that I took an interest in. Then, in 1941 when I was ill, Dr. Addis… Tom Addis- Stanford Medical School treated me in an orthomolecular way. I didn’t get any drugs, but he did have me take vitamins. And essentially the RDA- and so from 1941 on- I took every day a pretty standard, vitamin/mineral pill. In 1966, Irwin Stone, a biochemist who had devoted much of his life to checking up on vitamin C and who then wrote a book, The Healing Factor of Vitamin C Against Disease, wrote a letter to me sending some of his papers in which he argued that every person is deficient in vitamin C because of the bad accident that interferes with the ability of human beings to synthesize it. And he said evidence from animals that make vitamin C suggests that perhaps 10 grams a day… 10,000 milligrams a day is the amount that people ought to be getting rather than 60 milligrams a day. And he recommended that I start taking three grams a day to see if it helped me to control a common cold which I suffered from quite a lot and perhaps other diseases. So that was alright. I still wasn’t very interested in vitamins. Then I read the work of Hoffer and Osmond, and I met those two psychiatrists who were giving very large amounts of vitamins to schizophrenic patients just as Dr. Kenyon has been, too. And that was when I had this burst of insight that vitamins are really astonishing substances because of how little toxicity they have. And the question immediately came up in my mind, how much of these- vitamin C, for example, should I take to be in the best of health? I still- well I thought about: why is it that megavitamins have value in controlling schizophrenia? Yeah, what’s the mechanism? And I published my first paper in this field in 1968. It was called, “Orthomolecular Psychiatry”… it was also the paper in which the word “orthomolecular” was introduced. There I presented the number of arguments about mechanisms that go on in the human body and that involve vitamins. And why it is that even animals that manufacture their own vitamin C are benefited if you give them extra vitamin C. That may have been a new argument, but, you know, I have a background of knowledge of chemistry, not so much biochemistry, but chemistry as a whole. And I like to understand things. I like to understand what’s going on in systems. Recently, Dr. Hoffer said my contribution, Dr. Linus Pauling’s contribution has been, not that he discovered megavitamins, therapy of schizophrenia or of cancer or anything else, but that he presented us with an understanding of why it works. And I think also, your contribution to me as one who has lived through this orthomolecular movement pretty well from the day that I saw that paper on Orthomolecular Psychiatry, I took comfort from it as I was making the transition into a biomedical or biochemical model in my, then, psychiatric practice since it’s become more of a medical practice as you know. I realized that what you have given us was a- the courage to make a paradigm shift and away from the toximolecular as Bernie Rimland calls it and into the orthomolecular conception of not just disease, but health and disease in relation using biochemistry as a structure of understanding… a bit hazy now, at least a way to go. And that- along with that- in relation to vitamins, it was clear right from the very onset of your pioneering work with vitamin C and the common cold, you are reanalyzing data that was already there and calling for studies that would identify optimum doses. This is yet to be done, but it’s exactly what you did with electro negativity where your basic chemistry days, you laid out the electro negativity for all of the elements. Here you are. A little bit later it was required the same poetic justice. When I was 30 years old I introduced what might be called a new paradigm in chemistry. Of course, I also was criticized. The Soviet Union, the scientists in the Soviet Union had a big meeting at which they passed a resolution saying that no patriotic Soviet scientist would use my ideas because they were incompatible, dialectical materialism. And my wife made the comment, I think essentially on the vitamin C business, but referring also to earlier work that I had done, that my trouble was that I was stubborn… that I wouldn’t give up. If I had decided that something was right, I wouldn’t allow pressure to cause me to deviate from my course. And the arguments about the value of vitamins seemed to me to be so compelling that we just have to accept them. You were obviously the living example of that, you know. Are you now 92 or 93? Well I’m in my 93rd year. My 92nd birthday was six days ago. And it’s not just living long, it’s living well, living actively, you know. And that’s why I think you’re such a wonderful example of- I mean here you are- a practicing scientist, you’re more productive then the two of us put together surely in your 93rd year. And that’s what we all want out of life is to live well, to live actively and well and – Right now I’m hard at work on making the bio statistical analysis of mortality data for cancer patients, 304 cancer patients. And these are patients that Dr. Hoffer has had under his care. It reached a total of 304 two years ago when we decided to stop that phase of the study and follow those patients. There are others being registered now. And the interesting thing that the first study of Hoffer’s group gave was that Hoffer’s treatment is quite clearly better then Cameron’s. Cameron gave 10 grams of vitamin C per day to his patients, terminal cancer patients in Scotland called untreatable because there was nothing the physicians knew that could, that had any hope of controlling the disease. And they responded in a remarkable way… living some years rather than just months after reaching the untreatable stage. Hoffer gave 10 grams or the average of 12 grams a little more of vitamin C to his patients. But he also gave them 800 units of vitamin E, 1500 milligrams of niacin per day and 25 or 50 times the RDA of other B vitamins and beta carotene and selenium. So, Hoffer’s patients are living twice as long after reaching, after being registered in this study than Cameron’s patients. That is the other nutrients, double the effect that vitamin C alone had shown by Cameron studies. Well you know, a skeptic can say but Cameron was working in a hospital in Scotland and Hoffer’s in a hospital in British Columbia, things are so much different you can’t attribute it to the other vitamins that Hoffer gave. But I can if I want to. That’s right. That’s right. I was just reading an article about the principle of parsimony. When I formulated my rules about the structure of the silicate minerals and other complex crystals in 1929, I put in the rule of parsimony… that when you’re trying to find a structure, concentrate on the simpler ones, not the more complicated ones. And there was an article in Science about the rule of parsimony that didn’t mention what I had done. So here, obviously, the simplest explanation of the difference between Hoffer’s patients and Cameron’s patients is that they get these other nutrients as well as the vitamin C. There may well be some other factor involved, but that’s the simplest one. Gee, there are so many great things that we’re just beginning to get into, and I wish we had time to have far more of these conversations, Dr. Pauling and Richard. This is, I think, I think we really are at the beginning of revolution in the appreciation of the role of vitamins and you know you’ve played a role, and Linus has played a role and I hope we can have some more conversations like this.

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