"Sit down and feed, and welcome to our table." -William Shakespeare

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Pertussis and Vitamin C

Well, this week I'm a-dither again over pertussis.  Omaha has a high incidence at the current time, including cases at schools within a mile of our home.  Our family has been blessed, yet a third time, with exceptional health care providers who are interested and open to alternatives to allopathic (standard Western pharmeceutical) treatment of health issues. 

I was freaking out this week because my kids all contracted some really nasty virus involving spiking fevers and a whooping  cough.  But not whooping cough.  Thank the Lord.

Anyhoo, I came across this article:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC536087/pdf/canmedaj00183-0060.pdf

Naturally, this article will be received by many with great skepticism.  However, I am very interested in medical journals from about 1880 through about 1940 because they represent the end of the accumulation of alternative medical wisdom in Western medicine.  At the time, of course, it wasn't alternative, and most medicines were made in-house by 'chemists', aka pharmacists.  Most medicines were made from natural substances, aka plants.  While ascorbic acid is not (the subject of the article), neither is ascorbic acid a pharmeceutical.

Unfortunately, in the thirties and forties, medicine became big business, homeopathic information was yanked from medical textbooks, and pharmacists became pill dispensers instead of pill MAKERs.  In the 1970s, Adelle Davis (nutritionist, writer and medical researcher), tried to find out why a reputable study on vitamion C for the common cold was refused publication, she was told by the editor of a big-time medical journal that he'd be run out of business if he dared print information on a cheap, readily available treatment for the common cold.

Personally, I have used the technique described in the article (I thought I made up the term "Vitamin C loading", but maybe not?).  It's a fascinating phenomenon.  On a regular day my body only absorbs about 3 grams of Vitamin C, but as soon as I'm ill I can take 10-12 grams before reaching tolerance.  (As described in the article, you find out how much your body can absorb by noting when your bowels get loose, then you back off a gram or two the next day.)

Once, when I was pregnant with Rosie, I had a terrible virus and my temperature kept creeping up till it was hanging out around 104- not a pretty picture with a 20 week old baby in utero.  Under my doctor and midwife's directions, I took 25 grams of Vitamin C per day for 5 days straight to fight the infection.  It also kept that fever down in a safer range.  If you think this all sounds like nonsense, go ahead, take 12 grams of Vitamin C and see what happens!  Then take 12 grams of Vitamin C when you have a cold and see what heppens.  (Actually, don't do that.  You need to have a small amount of Vitamin C supplemented every day when you feel fine for it to work well without messing up your system when you are sick.)

If this still all sounds ridiculous to you, consider that many mammals, rats for one, make their own Vitamin C.  They don't need to get it from thier diet.  When rats are stressed or sick, they make about 20 times more Vitamin C as usual.  Don't take my word for any of this, though.  By all means, find somewhere to read about it for yourself.

And ya, google is fine.  I recently had a doctor friend confide in me that he uses google about equally as he uses the books lining his office wall.  Go figure.

Ok, that was longer than intended.  I'm off to bottle a fresh quart of elderberry syrup for my scratchy little throats upstairs.


Half the modern drugs could well be thrown out the window except that the birds might eat them.  ~Martin H. Fischer, Fischerisms

In the 1960s, people took acid to make the world weird.  Now the world is weird, and people take Prozac to make it normal.  ~Author Unknown

I don't like people who take drugs.  Customs agents, for example.  ~Author Unknown

1 comment:

  1. Such great info! Thanks for writing it all up. =)

    ReplyDelete