Tag Archives: Dr Patrick KIngsley

July 2015 in review: part 1

There have been a good number of tweets on the #WDDTY hashtag highlighting bonkers claims in the July 2015 edition of WDDTY, so lets take a quick whistle-stop tour through its pages.

We dealt with the cover stories yesterday. Page 2 is (as usual) a full-page “we’ll never take advertising” advert for Altrient, which appears to be in competition with homeopathy as their strapline is “nothing compares to Altrient”. They lead with a “33% increase in skin firmness” cream, high dose vitamin C (perfect for enriching your urine) and “high performance” glutathione, which, you will be pleased to hear, may support optimal overall health (quackvertising code for: there is no credible evidence that it does), supports a number of fad diets, and contains no gluten or GMOs. WDDTY seems quite happy for the drugs it likes to be oversold with vague and inflated claims, it seems. Continue reading July 2015 in review: part 1

WDDTY, Kingsley and cancer – A vital report that’s a gift for you

This has just landed in my email inbox:

A vital report that’s a gift for you from WDDTY

The campaign to get What Doctors Don’t Tell You (WDDTY) banned in stores across the UK is relentless.

A small group of pharma-supported trolls just don’t want you to read vital information about your health; bad for their paymaster’s pockets no doubt.
But sometimes the information is so important that we want you to have it.  Our July issue featured the extraordinary work of Dr Patrick Kingsley, who explains the six major causes of cancer (and most aren’t the obvious ones).  You can download the whole issue here:

I removed the link for the download, since it’s only valid for 72 hours. Yes, I downloaded the pdf. Yes, it will be passed around for gleeful evisceration. The rest of the email was yet another attempt to attract subscribers, so I left it out as well; if you subscribe to WDDTY emails, you’ll get reduced-price subscription offers impressively often, so it would be a waste of space printing it here. In any case, the points I wanted to address are in the four relatively short sentences reproduced above. Let’s be having them:

The campaign to get What Doctors Don’t Tell You (WDDTY) banned in stores across the UK is relentless.

Uh-huh. It’s already been pointed out many, many times to the Great McTaggart that nobody is seeking to ban WDDTY. All that has been asked is that supermarkets and newsagents cease stocking it until such time as the editorial team clean up their act and stop presenting half-truths and whole lies as incontrovertible fact.

A small group of pharma-supported trolls just don’t want you to read vital information about your health; bad for their paymaster’s pockets no doubt.

Interesting. Now this was in an email sent out to subscribers: i.e. a public list. Wisely (for once) she doesn’t name the alleged “pharma-supported trolls”. Unfortunately, McTaggart has already named and given the home and/or work addresses of people she believes to be skeptics who have been part of the campaign. In fact, it’s mostly people who had bugger-all to do with the campaign that she seems to have exposed to potential abuse and harassment from her fanatical band of swivel-eyed loony followers. Way to go, Lynne.

Anyway, we all know who she means: Simon Singh and the Sense About Science group, Alan Henness, Guy Chapman, “Josephine Jones”, Jo Brodie etc. It’s as well for the Blessed McTaggart that none of them is at all litigious, as the unequivocal allegation that they are being paid by a pharmaceutical company to blog and tweet about WDDTY and its love of potentially lethal quackery is probably actionable. Given the precarious financial situation of the WDDTY group companies based in England and Wales, McTaggart and Hubbard couldn’t afford to defend a libel claim.

But sometimes the information is so important that we want you to have it.

Ye-e-es. This is WDDTY we’re talking about. They’re not strong on information. Misinformation, yes; disinformation, certainly. Information, not so much. See the rest of this site for details.

Now, I learnt a new term last night: native advertising. It’s a vaguely racist-sounding term for what are, basically, heavily-disguised infomercials.  Some online newspapers are increasingly using them in place of real journalism, on the basis that they have to eat.

There’s an awful lot of native advertising in WDDTY, when you look at it closely. Not only does it carry the usual amount of ordinary advertising, not infrequently from businesses already in trouble with the ASA – see the figures lovingly calculated by wandering teacake – but it also contains a lot of stuff written by the editorial team that boils down to glorified adverts for their own quackery practices. This suggests that WDDTY is being used as free publicity by the entire editorial team. No wonder they’re screechingly sore about losing access to passing gullible idiots in local supermarkets. Speaking of free publicity for the editorial team:

Our July issue featured the extraordinary work of Dr Patrick Kingsley, who explains the six major causes of cancer (and most aren’t the obvious ones).

This is probably the bit where we steeple our fingers and assume an interested expression. What are Kingsley’s 6 major causes of cancer, then? I’ll compile a list. Brace yourselves.

wddty cancer kingsley july 2014

1. A lack of digestive enzymes

Kingsley bases this on some vague extrapolation from the correlation between the tapering-off of growth of the placenta and the development of the fetal digestive system. No, I am not shitting you. He argues that a chronic lack of digestive enzymes – due to modern foodstuffs, of course – can lead to cancer because digestive enzymes control cellular division, according to him.

2. Stress

“Stress of any sort is a major cause of cancer,” sez Kingsley, who then clearly specifies mental stress. Environmental stress doesn’t get a look-in in the tiny paragraph devoted to this “major cause”.

3. Too much acid

And in at Number Three is that firm favourite, alkaline diet! It’s been debunked over and over. The quacks love it, because it sounds vaguely plausible – acids are aggressive, right? So if you have too much acid, like when you get heartburn, it must be bad for you, right? – and they can sell supplements for it. Next up is another traditional quack mark-catcher:

4. Free radicals

These things were all in the news some years ago and were thought to contribute to ageing. There were ads everywhere for expensive moisturising creams claiming to combat free radicals and make your skin look 23% younger, or something. Diet hucksters published recipe books claiming to combat free radicals. Foodstuffs on supermarket shelves were claiming to combat free radicals. About the only thing not claiming to combat free radicals was the Army. Again, there’s no evidence to support it, but since when did that stop quacks from selling anything?

5. A fungus

YES! Where would a round-up of pop-eyed, straw-in-the-hard quackpottery be without C. albicans? When it strikes, it generally infects the mouth or the genitals. It does not, despite the assertions of Kingsley and similar profiteering fuckwits, regularly infect the whole body and get into the bloodstream. That, fortunately, is very rare.  The day you have candidemia raging through your circulatory system, you had better put yourself in the hands of a real doctor in an emergency ward or you will very shortly not be in possession of a single fuck to give, because you will be dead.

Kingsley’s test for C. albicans involves trying to float your spit on top of a glass of water for half an hour. Trust me, if you have an oral candida infection, you will know about it. The perils of eating too many homegrown cherries, since you ask. The cream I had to rub on the inside of my swollen cheeks tasted disgusting (I loathe orange flavouring) and it was a weird sensation to feel the colonies pop and die as the treatment got to them.

6. …

… Now isn’t that odd? There isn’t a 6th cause. All that trumpeting and ranting,  and they couldn’t even count to 6? What a rip-off.

Here are the main causes of cancer, according to real cancer specialists on a reputable website like Cancer Research UK:

  • Cancer causing substances (carcinogens)
  • Age
  • Genetic make up
  • The immune system
  • Smoking, bodyweight, diet and physical activity
  • Day-to-day environment
  • Viruses
  • Bacterial infection

Not quite the same as Kingsley’s list, is it? Now, this is where Kingsley gets down to the nitty-gritty and you understand why they were so desperate to get this issue out to the mugs, even as a freebie. It’s blatant native advertising:

1. How to diagnose your supposed ailments without bothering your doctor?

There are some blood tests that Kingsley recommends:

  • serum ferritin, which he incorrectly states is often overlooked when testing for anaemia),
  • thyroid function – another pointless test, as it will be prescribed by a doctor if patient presents symptoms of hypo- or hyper-thyroidism,
  • Vitamin D – while most Europeans are said to be low in Vitamin D, it is not considered useful to test for it. Spending 15 minutes a day in outdoors is probably enough, unless you’re daft enough to wear a burka
  • candida overgrowth. This is the quack-invented ailment which you test for by floating spit on a glass of water. It’s the second time I’ve typed this and I still cannot believe someone would seriously propound such transparent bullshit.
  • stool analysis – of course a quack, member of a breed that’s forever ranting about gut imbalances and such-like nonsense – is going to put the anal back into analysis. According to Kingsley: farting, constipation, the shits or an itchy arse are obviously due to some sort of infection. Not due to eating too many beans, or burgers or not wiping properly.

Now, how to get these tests done? Well, you can use your local lab, as long as you ignore their reference levels as those are just averages and absolutely not tailored to you. This is Standard Quack Ploy No 1: convince the mark  you believe they’re extra-special and that only you really understand their specialness and special needs for special treatment. Because they’re so much more special and different to everyone else.

Kingsley recommends 3 labs for this work. One is Genova Diagnostics, which I’d already noted as suspicious but couldn’t get beyond the login page to examine, and Biolab, which I’d already listed as quack-facilitating. Above all, though, he praises Neuro Lab, who have a terrible Web reputation and, when you see the claims the owner makes, you can understand why:

 In the late 1970’s (Olga Galkina) was one of the principles in a joint eastern bloc project that utilised Lactobacillius Bulgaricus as an extremely successful product in treating cancer patients.

Admire also this little gem of raging WTF:

schizophrenia is associated with too much memory and the younger age group whereas Alzheimers disease is associated with the ageing process and too little memory.

So, that’s three quack-friendly labs promoted. He goes on to promote various superfluous supplements and homeopathic remedies, usually specifying a brand and always specifying a stockist. More covert advertising. Last but not least, oh deary me no, we have Dr Patrick Kingsley’s Patent IV Vitamin Cocktails.

And all this fuckwittery, of which I have skimmed but the scum-covered upper atmosphere, and more comes from a book written by Kingsley. It is available AT SPECIAL DISCOUNT PRICE (What else?), signed by the author himself, and comes with lots of discount coupons for more pointless quack products.

No wonder WDDTY are so eager to spread their rag around, at a loss if need be. If sales figures continue to plummet, expect them to send people to distribute it at subway exits. With multipage native advertising pieces like that, they’re almost there anyway.

WDDTY: November 2013 editorial

This is the editorial from the WDDTY November 2013 issue, with comments.

A small group of people tried to prevent you from reading this issue of What Doctors Don’t Tell You.

This is false. The issue is not whether people read it, but whether it is actively promoted to unwary buyers. Subscribers (to whom the editorial is obviously primarily targeted) would have been unaffected.

They pressurized shops to stop selling our magazine and they were prepared to go to almost any lengths to achieve their aims, including the stage-managing of an ‘independent’ news article in a major newspaper that contained malicious falsehoods about us and our work.

This is false. The only length to which people went was: writing about the dangerous misinformation you promote, and alerting shops to the fact that this dangerous misinformation endangers their customers.

There is no evidence that Tom Whipple’s piece in The Times was “stage-managed”. There is no evidence that it was anything other than his own opinion, i.e. independent, without the need for scare quotes.

Why? Perhaps because we’d announced the next issue as a ‘cancer special’ that would include interesting new research about homeopathy.

No, because you consistently print bullshit. In this case you were promising “interesting new research” on homeopathy for cancer – a well-known and despicable fraud – but as it turned out what you delivered was not new anyway, just warmed-over propaganda.

Although not given any opportunity for right of reply,

This is false. You were contacted before the Times article and before other coverage.

we have published the facts about those allegations

This is false. You have published assertions, many of which have been conclusively proven to be false.

on our websites and Facebook pages, our supporters have offered overwhelming support,

Of course – and anybody not offering unconditional support was summarily banned, because free speech. And then you made false assertions about them being aggressive and bullying. Because you have a persecution complex.

and the story has gone wildly viral across the internet as something of a cause célèbre.

Yes, as a result of this the #WDDTY tag is dominated by people ripping you a new one.

But aside from the issues of censorship and press freedom,

There are no such issues. The right to publish does not confer the right to be stocked by anybody.

Or do you mean your ruthless censorship of dissenting opinion in your Facebook pages?

this subject has great personal meaning to us.

Yes. It’s your source of income.

About 20 years ago, we had our own experience of looking for answers to cancer when Edie, Bryan’s mother, then 78, was suddenly diagnosed with end-stage breast cancer. She’d privately nursed the cancer for several years without telling anyone, let alone seeing a medical professional.

This is a sad fact – believers in alternative woo have scared the shit out of people with horror stories of cancer treatment for so long that people are now more terrified of the doctors than the disease. You must be so proud.

When we finally learned of it and insisted she see her GP, he was shocked when examining her—her breast looked, as he put it, “like raw meat”. So advanced was the cancer that it was too late to try chemotherapy or any other intervention other than powerful painkillers.

This sounds like cancer en cuirasse, a horrible disease that was rarely seen for a generation until the hippy-dippy woo bullshit merchants came along.

Edie had three months to live at the very outside, the GP said to us privately. “And if I were you, I’d get her affairs in order.”

And of course this is the root of many cancer woo anecdotes: medical prognoses are brutal and honest, but they are not something you can mark in the calendar and book the hearse for an advanced discount.

To be honest, we were frightened and far from certain we had any answers. Fortunately, because of our work, we were able to contact WDDTY columnist Dr Patrick Kingsley, a medical pioneer in Leicestershire who has helped people with a variety of conditions, including cancer.

There are many great anecdotes of survivors using “The New Medicine”. I am still wading through them looking for any that are independently verified and published in the peer-reviewed literature. He apparently has the same number of peer-reviewed publications as “The UK’s No. 1 cancer researcher” – i.e. none at all.

We didn’t know how successful he’d be with a case of terminal cancer, but we were encouraged to hear that he ran a local cancer group consisting of many other no-hopers who were apparently outliving the odds. His therapy included high-dose intravenous vitamin C and hydrogen peroxide administered twice a week, and a modified healthy diet free of foods like dairy, wheat and sugar, plus a vitamin supplement programme tailored to the purse and tastes of someone reared on standard British fare.

So he asks how much money you’ve got and then tailors a programme to your wallet? Prince of  a man.

There is no credible evidence that vitamin C megadoses cure cancer.

There is no credible evidence that hydrogen peroxide cures cancer (and I’m damn certain it’s horribly painful for it to be injected intravenously – AT).

You do not describe how a diet of “standard British fare” can be pursued in the absence of dairy, wheat and sugar (as a coeliac I know that simply removing wheat is hard work on its own).

You do not name any other treatments that could have had the effect (woo-believers commonly “forget” to mention that it was woo plus standard of care).

We took Edie for treatment twice a week and, within a month, her breast started to heal. Several months later, Edie’s GP, the one who’d delivered the death sentence on her in the first place, came to examine her and was astonished to see her walking around at all. He took several tests and was rendered speechless. The cancer which had ravaged her breast, which he’d been so sure was beyond hope or treatment, had completely disappeared. Edie lived on for many more years until her husband died and she, divested of any further purpose, died six months after him.

Several, eh? Well, an anecdote from a believer in homeopathy and vitamin C as a cure for AIDS is certainly worth much more than any peer-reviewed publication there.

Worthy alternatives

What’s the point of the story?

The point is exactly the same as the conversion miracle stories of Born Again Christians. It’s to reinforce your faith and recruit others to the fold. Thanks for asking.

It is emphatically not that we believe that everyone with cancer should take vitamin C. A good number of people have had their cancer successfully treated with one of the three standard treatments on offer: chemotherapy, radiotherapy or surgery. These do sometimes work, especially if the cancer is caught early enough.

By sometimes, you mean in every known and documented case of long-term survival.

By sometimes you mean in excess of 80% 5-year survival for Hodgkin’s lymphoma, testicular cancer, melanoma, breast cancer and prostate cancer.

By sometimes you mean more than 50% 5-year survival for most cancers.

Here are the stats.

So as usual you are bigging up the woo and talking down the medicine.

Neither are we suggesting that people follow any particular course, whether conventional, complementary or alternative. Our job in these pages is not prescriptive but investigative—to dig out the best research we can about the ‘other side of the story’ on both conventional and alternative healthcare to allow our intelligent readers to make their own informed choices and decisions. The point about Edie’s story is that there are non- conventional therapies out there that work. Although the proof of their efficacy may still be ‘clinical’ or ‘anecdotal’— meaning they haven’t been thoroughly tested in a rigorous double-blind trial—that doesn’t mean they aren’t worthy

Yes, it really does. If it doesn’t pass properly controlled clinical trials, all you have is opinion. And opinions are like arseholes: everybody has one. And quacks talk out of theirs.

And some alternative therapies are supported by a good deal of published evidence of success.

False. A treatment that has published evidence of success is no longer alternative. It may be emergent, but it is not alternative.

A treatment that has many anecdotes but no evidence will be alternative.

Many thousands of people have personal experience of such anecdotes of complete recovery by taking a treatment path other than the conventional alone.

Allegedly. Funnily enough, though, these claims tend to fail the test of independent replication. Odd, that.

Journalist and author Laura Bond’s mother Gemma—whose story is featured in this issue (page 26)—refused to undergo any conventional treatment for her ovarian cancer. Instead, she tried a smorgasbord of alternatives, from vitamin C and enemas to hyperthermia and ozone therapy, and she’s alive and well today and completely clear of her cancer.

Then that is a world first and needs to be properly studied and written up, because there is precisely bugger-all credible evidence that enemas cure cancer.

Laura has researched the kind of personality traits that make for a cancer survivor (page 27) and also the roles of ozone therapy (page 29) and eliminating dairy products (page 34) in successful cancer treatment.

There is no credible evidence that personality type affects survival, but it does affect quality of life. Believers in woo feel more in control and think they will live longer. In fact, they die sooner, even after adjusting for the fact that they typically present later.

Even homeopathy—that most unlikely alternative therapy which sceptics argue is just so much water and wishful thinking—has shown such considerable promise in its use in India and in US laboratory studies that America’s National Cancer Institute wants to carry out further trials of its own (page 68).

Nope. There is literally no reason to think homoeopathy should work, and literally no way it can.

The claim that NCI is interested is mendacious. Look at homeopathy on their website, it takes you to NCCAM, who damn it with the faintest of faint praise. The Office of Cancer Complementary and Alternative Medicine is the quackademic division of NCI This is the place that has shown limited interest in the marketing claims you recycle as fact, and they can’t get funding because NCCAM no longer funds studies on homeopathy, considering that they are unethical and a waste of time.

The claim that NCI is interested, originates solely with the Banerjis, whose advertorial makes up the meat of your propaganda.

Are we saying homeopathy can cure cancer? No.

This is false. You have said exactly that and you say it again in this issue, though not necessarily in so many words.

We’re saying that it’s worthy of further investigation. In fact, investigating alternatives is now an imperative.

Your problem is that you never acknowledge a point at which the investigation should be abandoned. NCCAM does: that is why they have stopped funding studies of homeopathy.

For despite all the grandstanding, the pink ribbons and the attempts to cloak cancer treatment in the weighty mantle of science, the fact remains that the vast majority of modern medicine’s arsenal against cancer doesn’t work.

This is false. David Gorski nailed that one recently and the theme is ongoing.

Some cancers can now be treated extremely effectively or cured altogether. Others cannot, at this time. The number of cancer cures that have been originally proposed by the alternative health market in the last 20 years and which have been proven to work is, to the best of my knowledge, zero. The number of early results which have been seized on by the alternative market and promoted as a miracle cure despite subsequent refutation by science, is not zero.

As responsible journalists it’s also our duty not to censor, which includes not censoring that the overall success rate of conventional cancer treatments is just 12 per cent.

If you were responsible journalists, you would not make that false and irresponsible claim. In case you care (which you plainly don’t) about 15 seconds’ Googling brings up the CRUK page which shows an aggregate treatment success rate of 51% for all cancers.

From the orthodox perspective, the War on Cancer is decisively being lost.

The war on cancer was a stupid publicity stunt by Richard Nixon – how many other statements he made are considered to be honest or worthwhile these days?

Advertising mogul Lord Maurice Saatchi arrived at a similar view to ours after watching his wife die from her chemotherapy as much as from her cancer.

And his former sister-in-law’s late husband wrote a powerful and moving book ripping great chunks out of that kind of shit.

He is trying to gain support for a bill that would allow oncologists to try different approaches. Right now they are struck off for straying from the conventional cutting–irradiating–poisoning treatment.

Oncologists don’t need to be “allowed” to do anything, they are perfectly competent to decide the best evidence for themselves. This is pure “health freedom” bullshit: a transparent attempt by quacks to gain access to large pots of money and vulnerable, desperate people.

The Cancer Act has a similar stranglehold over the marketing of cancer therapies. No one can talk about or publish any product or service that features cancer therapy of any description without falling foul of trading standards.

Fucking-A-right. And so it should be.

It exists because of people like you, who place religious devotion to bullshit ideas above the careful process of scientific evaluation.

The entire thrust of medicine over the last hundred years has been to try to separate opinion from fact. The result has been marginalising of those whose opinions are wrong. You and your ilk are trying to roll back the clock and bring about an age of endarkenment.

I hope you fail.