Archive for the ‘Detoxing’ Category

Your Liver is Your Detox Organ. Here’s Why & How to Support it

Your Liver Is Your Detox Organ. Here’s Why & How To Support It

Image by Marc Tran / Stocksy

We humans are alive because of brilliant biochemistry, and while each system of our body has its own unique function, they are all inextricably linked and work together to keep us alive and thriving. When one system goes awry, it often affects other seemingly unrelated aspects of our health. This is especially true when it comes to detox, which is one of the biggest factors of poor health that I see in my patients.

With research starting to show the link between our increased toxin exposure and autoimmune conditions, it’s more important than ever for your body’s detoxification systems to be working properly. As your body’s largest organ, your liver is also the main detoxifier.

Why your liver is your detox organ.

Working in constant communication with your stomach, pancreas, gallbladder, and the rest of your digestive system, your liver is responsible for storing and converting nutrients from the foods we eat for our bodies to utilize. Through its role in the metabolism of fat, protein, and carbohydrates, your liver works to ensure that blood glucose levels are stabilized to prevent blood sugar imbalances and other metabolic problems. It works to filter out toxins from the foods you eat and environmental exposures as well as acting as a blood purifier, clearing out your blood of these impurities and only utilizing the necessary nutrients. Needless to say, if your liver isn’t working well, your ability to detox is going to be greatly affected.

When your liver is overloaded with toxins, it creates a cascade of systemic chronic inflammation, which further affects your liver’s ability to rid itself of these toxins. It becomes a vicious cycle between toxin buildup and inflammation that can only be broken through limiting your toxin exposure and supporting your liver’s natural ability to detox.

Detox rituals that support your liver.

I’ve written in the past about various ways to make your life a cleanse. But to really boost your detox pathways and liver function, these targeted natural tools are my go-to for next-level liver and detox support:

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1. Dandelion tea

Methylation is your body’s biochemical superhighway that controls your body’s ability to detox. B vitamins act as fuel for methylation and are found abundantly in dandelions. Brew up a cup of dandelion tea to support methylation and help support optimal liver function.

2. Milk thistle

This plant is one of the most well-researched natural remedies for treating liver problems and has been used for years to treat a number of different liver conditions, including hepatitis and alcoholic liver disease. Milk thistle aids in eliminating toxins that have built up in the liver in addition to helping restore liver cells that have been damaged from increased toxin exposure. You can take it in a supplement capsule or as a tea.

Image by Yoyochow23 / iStock

3. Garlic

Garlic helps to activate liver detox enzymes that work to break down the toxins that enter your body in order to effectively eliminate them. Thankfully, garlic makes a delicious addition to almost any recipe, so don’t be afraid to load up while cooking your next meal!

4. Sulfuric vegetables

Vegetables such as broccoli, broccoli sprouts, mushrooms, Brussels sprouts, and cauliflower are considered sulfuric and contain the powerful antioxidant glutathione. This antioxidant is essential for activating phase 1 and phase 2 liver detoxification.

5. Beets

Beets are great for helping break down toxins through increasing enzyme activity so that your body can eliminate them quicker. I love roasting them as a side or adding them to a salad seasoned with garlic!

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6. Red clover

This is one of my favorites for its ability to rid toxins from not only your liver but your spleen and lymphatic system as well. You can take it in capsule form or as an herbal tincture.

7. Burdock root

As a tea or supplement, this root does wonders for removing toxins, specifically heavy metals. With its natural diuretic properties, it works to flush out toxins by increasing fluid excretion as well as boosting your lymphatic system.

You don’t have to adopt all these rituals to support your liver, but by making yourself a cup of dandelion tea, adding garlic and beets to your next meal, or taking a red clover supplement, you can support your detox pathways going into 2019.


More on Detoxification:

Briefly, MSM stands for Methylsulfonylmethane and is 34% sulfur by weight. Sulfur plays a crucial role in detoxification and is an important antioxidant for producing glutathione. If you aren’t getting enough sulfur, glutathione can not work. Even if you have a diet rich in sulfur (think cabbage, onions, garlic, broccoli, etc – essentially the stinky veggies – and many other food items as well) your body still could use supplementation.




Naturally Recovering Autism, Lyme Disease, & Coinfections

 58 Min

November, 2018

Naturally Recovering Autism (18) Lyme Disease and its Co-infections

With Karen Thomas and Dr. Jodie A. Dashore:

Want to hear Thomas’ weekly radio show?  Go here and sign up:


Got Mold?

Upcoming Toxic Mold Summit FREE and online.  From Jan. 28-Feb 3, 2019.

Register here:


Dr. Neil Nathan’s New Book:  Toxic:  Heal Your Body from Mold Toxicity, Lyme Disease, Multiple Chemical Sensitivities, and Chronic Environmental Illness.

Toxic book


Podcast:  Life After Mold with Dr. Lauren Tessier

Lauren Tessier, ND is a Naturopathic Physician licensed in the state of Vermont. She received her Bachelors in Premedical Sciences and Health Psychology from Massachusetts College of Pharmacy in Boston and later became a Naturopathic Physician at Bastyr University in Kenmore, Washington.

Her practice, Life After Mold, uses a patient-centered approach to help recover those that are suffering from mold-related illness.  She combines naturopathic, functional, and integrative medicine to address the entire person.  She is a Shoemaker Certified Physician specializing in the treatment of Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (CIRS) which results from exposure to water-damaged buildings.

In 2011, Hurricane Irene created an unimaginable flood in Waterbury, Vermont, and she was unprepared for what she would see next in her practice.  Patients were ill with unexplained rashes, allergies that did not respond to treatment, fatigue, breathing difficulties, neurological complaints, headaches, nausea, and immune system dysfunction.  When her normal approaches no longer worked for these patients, she dove deep into mold-related illness.

Her practice is dedicated to helping those suffering with mold, biotoxin, and mycotoxin associated illness resulting from water-damaged buildings. As time passed, she came to the belief that the environment plays a role in all chronic illness.  Environmental illness includes mold, heavy metals, glyphosate exposure, chronic infections such as Lyme disease, Multiple Chemical Sensitivity, and Mast Cell Activation Syndrome.  Dr. Tessier is an Executive Board Member of the International Society for Environmentally Acquired Illness (ISEAI) which aims to advance medical knowledge surrounding environmentally acquired illness.

Key Takeaways

  • What are some of the environmental factors that may predispose an environment to water-damage and the potential for mold illness?
  • What are some of the illness-creating substances that are found in a water-damaged building?
  • What are common symptoms of CIRS?
  • Are there basic screening tests that can be performed of an environment before investing in an IEP?
  • How important are the HLA haplotypes in CIRS?
  • Is there clinical value in urinary mycotoxin testing?
  • Can molds encountered in a water-damaged building lead to colonization within the body?
  • When considering binders, what is absorption vs. adsorbtion?
  • Why is bile flow important and how might it be supported?
  • What options might help reducing inflammation in those with CIRS?
  • Are there downsides of exogenous glutathione supplementation?
  • How important is eradicating MARCoNS in CIRS?
  • How might VIP and Synapsin be helpful in those with CIRS?
  • What triggers Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (MCAS) and how might it be addressed?
  • When someone feels significantly worse, what rescue items might help to move through a detox or Herxheimer reaction?
  • Is there a role for limbic system retraining in CIRS?


In the same vein, here’s another Podcast titled:

Create Your Healthy Home with May Dooley, MS, MA, CMC

In this episode, you will learn about Bau Biologie, or Building Biology, and how to evaluate and improve the health of the external environment in order to improve overall health.

May Dooley, MS, MA, CMC (Council-certified Microbial Consultant) is a former middle school science teacher who loves to educate and empower people with information to improve their environment – and thus, their lives.  She has been an environmental consultant for more than 24 years helping people make their home environment healthier.

She leads her clients through the basic steps to assess and create a healthy home which includes air quality, water quality, and reduced exposure to other stressors that may impact health such as electromagnetic fields.  Her inspections are interactive, and her clients learn how to measure EMFs, reduce body voltage in their bed, use a laser particle counter to evaluate their vacuum cleaner, and to take samples to explore for mold.  She even brings along her microscope and looks at the samples in your home.  Once she has evaluated an environment using the principles of Bau Biologie, she provides an easy-to-understand series of steps to improve the environment.

Key Takeaways

  • Why might culture plate air sampling be a better option than spore trap testing?
  • What are the pros and cons of the ERMI?
  • What is the CAP ERMI?
  • What role do microbial VOCs play in the health of an environment?
  • How often can mold issues be remediated?
  • How is a microscope helpful in exploring the potential for mold?
  • When moving to a new environment, what testing should be done to validate the environment is safe?
  • What belongings can be brought from a moldy environment to a new environment?
  • What can be used to address small amounts of visible mold?
  • What vacuum cleaners are ideal?
  • What are the 5 different types of EMFs and their sources?
  • What is body voltage and how is it measured?
  • What is grounding and how should it be done?
  • Why should the bed have no metal materials?
  • What light bulbs might be best?



The content of this show is for informational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any illness or medical condition. Nothing in today’s discussion is meant to serve as medical advice or as information to facilitate self-treatment. As always, please discuss any potential health-related decisions with your own personal medical authority.


For more:


Are Root Canals Or Hidden Jaw Infections Keeping Your Lyme Alive?


By Dr. Jay Davidson


  • Complications and infections following dental work, including infected root canals or areas of dead jaw bone called cavitations, can cause systemic harm throughout our bodies and impede healing from Lyme and related infections.
  • Infected root canals and cavitations don’t cause symptoms within the mouth, and often go undetected.
  • Cavitations, pockets of dead, infected jaw bone, are extremely common following dental procedures including tooth extractions and root canals. Up to 90% of tooth extractions lead to cavitations.
  • Infected cavitations keep treatment from reaching our brains, and can’t be accessed by our immune systems.
  • Cavitations are ideal breeding grounds for bacteria and infections that can spread throughout the body.
  • Cavitations are not detected during routine dental examinations, but can be searched for by biological dentists using a CAVITAT scanner.
  • Root canal treatments leave behind dentin tubules but cut off blood flow, creating a perfect breeding ground for harmful, anaerobic bacteria and Lyme-related microbes.
  • Root canal treatments have been linked to cancer and a number of chronic diseases but are still the go-to treatment for dying teeth.
  • It’s best to avoid root canal treatments if possible, in favor of less harmful options such as non-titanium implants, bridges, or partial dentures. If you’ve already had a root canal treatment, it should be removed if it’s been infected.
  • Cavitations can be addressed with surgery to clean out the jaw bone or x-tip ozone injections to kill harmful bacteria.
  • It’s extremely important to support the immune system before, during, and after treatment for cavitations, and to focus on detoxing.
  • For more in depth guidance on this and other critical steps towards recovery, sign up for my at-home Lyme disease program or apply for one-on-one coaching.


We rarely think about our mouths or teeth contributing to illness in our bodies. After all, most of us have a dentist dedicated to the health of our teeth, and separate doctors to help us take care of the rest of our bodies. When we have a tooth problem that needs fixing, we go to see our dentists, undergo any necessary procedures, and then we move on. But what most people don’t know is that complications and infections following dental work can cause serious and systemic harm throughout our bodies… and because these infections rarely cause symptoms within the mouth, most of us don’t even know that they’re there.

If you are finding yourself stuck and unable to recover from Lyme or a chronic infection in spite of your best efforts, it may be time to look into the possibility of infections that are hiding behind your teeth.


The mouth is often talked about as being the gateway to the body. It is the point of entry not only for the food we eat and the water we drink but even for the air that we breathe. Because of the multitude of infections, pathogens, and toxins that can find their way into our bodies through our mouths, the immune system is active there, and we are equipped with an oral microbiome to help protect us. The mouth, in other words, houses our first line of defense.

Of course, it isn’t just food and water that we’re putting into our mouths. When we have dental work done, we are allowing any number of materials in. Amalgam (silver) fillings, crowns, retainers, and titanium implants can all contribute to toxicity and neurological symptoms associated with Lyme, Bartonella, and related infections.

Beyond metal in the mouth, cavitations– infected areas of jaw bone resulting from tooth extractions and root canals– can impede healing from Lyme and any number of other chronic infections.


So, what ARE cavitations? Basically, cavitations are areas of dead, infected jaw bone. These holes in the jaw bone commonly form after a tooth extraction, wisdom tooth removal, or root canal treatment, when periodontal ligaments from an extracted tooth are left behind and block the growth of new bone by cutting off circulation to the area. These areas of dead bone often become home to insidious bacterial infections.

Infected cavitations can create a barrier preventing treatment for Lyme from reaching the brain. Cavitations can occur in the lower or upper jaw, the latter of which is connected with the skull.

It is estimated that 77 – 90% of routine tooth extractions lead to cavitation infections 1. The trouble is that these infections rarely, if ever, cause localized symptoms (like tooth pain or swelling), and they are not detected during routine dental examinations or even on regular x-rays.


Cavitations create a perfect environment for Lyme and all kinds of bacteria and parasites to breed in hiding. Cavitations are considered focal infections, meaning that they originate in one place but can spread to other parts of the body. But although these bacterial infections can spread throughout the body, our immune system can’t reach them. Not only can we not fight the infection at its source, cavitations compromise the immune system overall: and when the immune system is already weakened because of Lyme or another chronic infection or disease, this affects us even more.

In addition to promoting systemic infection, cavitations actually create a barrier that prevents us from accessing and eliminating pathogens in the brain. So, you may be undergoing treatment for Lyme, but if you have a cavitation, that treatment may be unable to reach the head where it’s needed.

Cavitations are sneaky. They can cause chronic infection throughout the body and keep Lyme active and alive, but they often go undetected because one thing they don’t do is cause symptoms within the mouth.


Cavitations Barrier to Healing Dr. Jay Davidson


So, how can you determine whether or not you have a cavitation that’s holding you back from healing? If you’ve ever had a root canal treatment or a tooth extraction, including removal of your wisdom teeth, you may have a cavitation. Cavitation infections are extremely common, and are even more likely if your immune system has already been weakened because of another kind of infection.

Unfortunately, conventional dentists are not trained to look for or be concerned about cavitations, which are not obvious or visible during any kind of routine check-up. Biological dentists, who take a more natural and holistic approach that factors in connections between toxins, environmental exposures, the mouth, and the body, can usually help.

A biological dentist who is trained to detect cavitations will generally use a specific type of ultrasonic tool called a CAVITAT scanner to search for areas of dead and infected bone. If they do find a cavitation, don’t panic! Once they’ve found the area that’s been housing the infection, the next step is to help you to eliminate it, and enhance your overall healing.

It is recommended that you get checked for cavitations once every two years if you’ve had a tooth removed or a root canal.


Let’s zero in on root canals for a minute. Anyone who has ever had one will wince at the mention of this dental procedure. When a tooth is dead or dying, a root canal treatment is usually done. During this procedure, the pulp inside the tooth is removed. The tooth is cleaned out and disinfected, and then the root canal is shaped, and a filling is put in. The overall benefit of a root canal treatment is that you get to save your tooth (and get rid of the pain that it may have been causing you).

The problem is that although dentists are removing the part of the tooth that is infected, they are leaving behind the periodontal ligament, a connective tissue structure that is an ideal breeding ground for certain kinds of harmful bacteria2. The filling that is put into the tooth cuts off blood supply throughout the area. The dentin tubules (microscopic communication channels) that have been left behind are no longer a bi-directional highway for helpful microbes; they are now a direct route to a hiding place for harmful bacteria that thrive without oxygen. These bacteria, called anaerobic because of their ability to live and breed in environments without oxygen, can multiply like crazy and spread throughout our bodies, causing or contributing to chronic inflammation, neurological symptoms, and systemic infection.

Lyme-related microbes can make themselves right at home around a root canal, and other infections can aggravate and contribute to Lyme symptoms as they leak out into the bloodstream. Toxins, pathogens, and infections can leak and spread from dentin tubules, with the power to affect the whole body, but the immune system can’t get to them, and neither can any kind of treatment that we may be using to eliminate infection.

Unsurprisingly, the links between infected root canals and chronic disease do not end with Lyme and its co-infections. Diabetes, heart disease, kidney disease, Irritable Bowel Disease, arthritis, and lupus are among the other conditions with connections to root canals 3. Links between root canals and cancer have also been found, most famously by Dr. Josef Issels, a forward-thinking German physician who decades ago reported that 97% of his cancer patients had undergone at least one root canal procedure.

By some estimates, 75% of teeth that have had root canals develop tubule infections.

Dr. George Meinig, an endodontist (root canal specialist) who was one of the founders of the American Association of Endodontists and helped to popularize the procedure, learned later in his life and career about the high risk of infection and subsequent links to chronic disease that were associated with root canals, and began to advocate for putting an end to them. Dr. Meinig wrote a book on the subject, explaining the dangers involved in root canal treatments and exposing a cover-up of relevant research by the American Dental Association. Unfortunately, root canals continue to be the go-to treatment for dead and dying teeth within conventional dentistry, with an estimated 41,000 procedures performed every day 4.


So, practically speaking, how does this affect your healing process? You may be following a well-researched protocol to recover from Lyme involving a specific combination of herbs, antibiotics, and/or other treatments, but cavitations create an actual barrier blocking these treatments from reaching the head. Treatments are also unable to reach the dentin tubules where infections are often hiding, and where Lyme spirochetes may be silently breeding. If your protocol just doesn’t seem to be working, this may be why.

Infected root canals and cavitations can also hinder drainage, meaning that if you are undergoing treatment to cleanse Lyme and parasites, the toxins that are being released are not being eliminated properly. This can cause symptoms of die-off that may actually cause you to feel worse instead of better while you’re trying to heal.

These are some of the major reasons why cavitations and infected root canals need to be removed for complete recovery of Lyme. For comprehensive guidance and protocols on preparing the body for cavitation surgery or root canal removal and supporting the immune system throughout the process, as well as a protocol for amalgam filling removal which can be another huge hindrance to healing, sign up for my at-home Lyme disease program or apply for one-on-one coaching.


Of course, we want to try and avoid getting root canal treatments if we can. If a tooth is dying and cannot be repaired, other options including bridges, non-titanium implants, or partial dentures may be possible and can be discussed with your dentist (ideally a biological dentist).

If you already have one or more, it’s important to check for infection in the area, and discuss options with a biological dentist, who will take into account your Lyme disease and overall health when determining how to best move forward. Although the root canal itself may not cause problems if it isn’t housing an infection, the likelihood of infection now or in the future is high enough that your biological dentist may recommend removing the root canal no matter what. If a cavitation is found, then the root canal should be removed in order to allow treatment to progress.


If your biological dentist has found an infected cavitation, it’s time to tackle it so that you can regain control of your healing process! There are a few different options here, and they can be discussed with your dentist and any other practitioners who you’re working with.

Surgery is sometimes required in order to remove dead bone. Another possibility is x-tip ozone injections. This is a relatively simple and painless procedure that involves numbing the area and injecting ozone into the jaw bone to kill harmful bacteria and pathogens that are hiding there. This procedure may leave you with a sore jaw for a few days afterwards. Generally, 5-7 injections are necessary to completely kill off the pesky residents of your cavitation. Depending on the severity of your cavitation, ozone injections may be recommended in addition to or in place of surgery.

Low-level laser therapy is another method that is sometimes used for bone regeneration.

It’s important to make sure that your immune system is being supported before, during, and after surgery and/or ozone injections, as pathogens and infections are being released. It’s not uncommon to feel temporarily worse a few days after surgery as toxins pass through the body, but there are many ways to support your body through the process.

Detoxing may be recommended following surgery or an ozone treatment in order to give the immune system an extra boost. Supplementation with certain vitamins and minerals, as well as detoxification methods like coffee enemas or castor oil packs may be recommended after surgery.


In addition to trying to avoid root canals and repairing damage that may have been caused by dental work, there are a few things we can all do on a regular basis to support our overall health by way of our mouths and teeth.

Remember that microbiome in the mouth? Processed foods, artificial colors and flavors, and refined sugar will all disrupt its balance, weakening our body’s first line of defense. Hopefully you are already avoiding these things, but this is just another reason to!

Many toothpastes and mouthwashes also contain chemicals that harm our oral flora and disrupt our beneficial microbes. Switch to fluoride-free, natural toothpaste and natural mouthwash options to support friendly mouth microbes, and make sure that you are replacing your toothbrush regularly. Rinsing the mouth with sea-salted or ozonated water can also help to support your oral health.

It is also a good idea, regardless of whether or not you have cavitations or root canals, to work with a biological dentist if you can find one in your area.

Mouth Health Tips Dr. Jay Davidson


When it comes to repairing possible systemic damage caused by dental work and preventing future problems, it’s crucial to work with a dentist who takes a more holistic approach and is trained to view and work with your teeth in harmony with your body.

There is an excellent organization called the International Academy of Oral Medicine & Toxicology that is made up of biological dentists who understand and take into consideration factors like toxins and infections, and the many connections between oral health and overall wellness. This is a great place to start when you’re looking for a dentist who will work with you to address concerns related to cavitations and root canals as well as other serious inhibitors to healing like amalgam fillings, and who will help to advise you on supporting your body and immune system through any dental procedures.

When undergoing surgery or treatments to remove cavitation infections, you may want to work with a biological dentist in conjunction with your Lyme coach or practitioner to make sure that your body and immune system are being supported from all angles.


It can be overwhelming to think about damage that may already have been done because of past dental work, but there is always a way to work through and repair that damage. The most important thing is getting to the root (no pun intended) of the problem, and working on treating it and on healing.

If you feel like you’ve hit a wall in your Lyme recovery, addressing possible infected root canals and cavitations may be one of the most important steps that you take.

To learn more, watch my conversation with biological dentist Dr. Gerry Curatola.

For much more in depth guidance on this and other critical steps towards recovery, sign up for my at-home Lyme disease program or apply for one-on-one coaching, and get ready to regain control of your health!

  1. Huggins HA, Levy TE. Routine dental extractions routinely produce cavitations. J Adv Med. 1996; 9(4) Web.
  2. Nagaoka, Shigetaka, et al. “Bacterial Invasion into Dentinal Tubules of Human Vital and Nonvital Teeth.” Journal of Endodontics, vol. 21, no. 2, 1995, pp. 70–73., doi:10.1016/s0099-2399(06)81098-8. Web.
  3. Levy, Thomas E. “Oral Pathogens: A Common Cause of Chronic Disease.” Journal of Orthomolecular Medicine, vol. 31, no. 1, 2016. Web.
  4. Endodontic Facts, American Association of Endontists.


For more:

Story at-a-glance –

Amalgam, also called “silver fillings,” is a consumer fraud. By referring to the color of the compound rather than its content, consumers everywhere have been tricked into placing a known neurotoxin in their mouths
Because of this cover-up by organized dentistry, aided and abetted by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, 57 percent of Americans are unaware that amalgam is a mercury filling; 23 percent believe amalgam is made of silver; and only 11 percent of people say their dentist ever told them that amalgam contains mercury
There is no known safe level of exposure for mercury. Ideally, exposure should be zero.

He Got Schizophrenia. He Got Cancer. And Then He Got Cured.

He Got Schizophrenia. He Got Cancer. And Then He Got Cured.

A bone-marrow transplant treated a patient’s leukemia — and his delusions, too. Some doctors think they know why.
By Moises Velasquez-Manoff, science writer

CreditCreditJesse Jacobs

The man was 23 when the delusions came on. He became convinced that his thoughts were leaking out of his head and that other people could hear them. When he watched television, he thought the actors were signaling him, trying to communicate. He became irritable and anxious and couldn’t sleep.

Dr. Tsuyoshi Miyaoka, a psychiatrist treating him at the Shimane University School of Medicine in Japan, eventually diagnosed paranoid schizophrenia. He then prescribed a series of antipsychotic drugs. None helped. The man’s symptoms were, in medical parlance, “treatment resistant.”

A year later, the man’s condition worsened. He developed fatigue, fever and shortness of breath, and it turned out he had a cancer of the blood called acute myeloid leukemia. He’d need a bone-marrow transplant to survive. After the procedure came the miracle. The man’s delusions and paranoia almost completely disappeared. His schizophrenia seemingly vanished.

Years later, “he is completely off all medication and shows no psychiatric symptoms,” Dr. Miyaoka told me in an email. Somehow the transplant cured the man’s schizophrenia.

A bone-marrow transplant essentially reboots the immune system. Chemotherapy kills off your old white blood cells, and new ones sprout from the donor’s transplanted blood stem cells. It’s unwise to extrapolate too much from a single case study, and it’s possible it was the drugs the man took as part of the transplant procedure that helped him. But his recovery suggests that his immune system was somehow driving his psychiatric symptoms.

At first glance, the idea seems bizarre — what does the immune system have to do with the brain? — but it jibes with a growing body of literature suggesting that the immune system is involved in psychiatric disorders from depression to bipolar disorder.

The theory has a long, if somewhat overlooked, history. In the late 19th century, physicians noticed that when infections tore through psychiatric wards, the resulting fevers seemed to cause an improvement in some mentally ill and even catatonic patients.
Inspired by these observations, the Austrian physician Julius Wagner-Jauregg developed a method of deliberate infection of psychiatric patients with malaria to induce fever. Some of his patients died from the treatment, but many others recovered. He won a Nobel Prize in 1927.
One much more recent case study relates how a woman’s psychotic symptoms — she had schizoaffective disorder, which combines symptoms of schizophrenia and a mood disorder such as depression — were gone after a severe infection with high fever.
Modern doctors have also observed that people who suffer from certain autoimmune diseases, like lupus, can develop what looks like psychiatric illness. These symptoms probably result from the immune system attacking the central nervous system or from a more generalized inflammation that affects how the brain works.
Indeed, in the past 15 years or so, a new field has emerged called autoimmune neurology. Some two dozen autoimmune diseases of the brain and nervous system have been described. The best known is probably anti-NMDA-receptor encephalitis, made famous by Susannah Cahalan’s memoir “Brain on Fire.” These disorders can resemble bipolar disorder, epilepsy, even dementia — and that’s often how they’re diagnosed initially. But when promptly treated with powerful immune-suppressing therapies, what looks like dementia often reverses. Psychosis evaporates. Epilepsy stops. Patients who just a decade ago might have been institutionalized, or even died, get better and go home.
Admittedly, these diseases are exceedingly rare, but their existence suggests there could be other immune disorders of the brain and nervous system we don’t know about yet.
Dr. Robert Yolken, a professor of developmental neurovirology at Johns Hopkins, estimates that about a third of schizophrenia patients show some evidence of immune disturbance.
“The role of immune activation in serious psychiatric disorders is probably the most interesting new thing to know about these disorders,” he told me.

Studies on the role of genes in schizophrenia also suggest immune involvement, a finding that, for Dr. Yolken, helps to resolve an old puzzle. People with schizophrenia tend not to have many children. So how have the genes that increase the risk of schizophrenia, assuming they exist, persisted in populations over time? One possibility is that we retain genes that might increase the risk of schizophrenia because those genes helped humans fight off pathogens in the past.

Some psychiatric illness may be an inadvertent consequence, in part, of having an aggressive immune system.

Which brings us back to Dr. Miyaoka’s patient. There are other possible explanations for his recovery. Dr. Andrew McKeon, a neurologist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., a center of autoimmune neurology, points out that he could have suffered from a condition called paraneoplastic syndrome. That’s when a cancer patient’s immune system attacks a tumor — in this case, the leukemia — but because some molecule in the central nervous system happens to resemble one on the tumor, the immune system also attacks the brain, causing psychiatric or neurological problems. This condition was important historically because it pushed researchers to consider the immune system as a cause of neurological and psychiatric symptoms. Eventually they discovered that the immune system alone, unprompted by malignancy, could cause psychiatric symptoms.

Another case study from the Netherlands highlights this still-mysterious relationship. In this study, on which Dr. Yolken is a co-author, a man with leukemia received a bone-marrow transplant from a schizophrenic brother. He beat the cancer but developed schizophrenia.

Once he had the same immune system, he developed similar psychiatric symptoms.

The bigger question is this: If so many syndromes can produce schizophrenia-like symptoms, should we examine more closely the entity we call schizophrenia?

Some psychiatrists long ago posited that many “schizophrenias” existed — different paths that led to what looked like one disorder. Perhaps one of those paths is autoinflammatory or autoimmune.

If this idea pans out, what can we do about it? Bone marrow transplant is an extreme and risky intervention, and even if the theoretical basis were completely sound — which it’s not yet — it’s unlikely to become a widespread treatment for psychiatric disorders. Dr. Yolken says that for now, doctors treating leukemia patients who also have psychiatric illnesses should monitor their psychiatric progress after transplantation, so that we can learn more.

And there may be other, softer interventions. A decade ago, Dr. Miyaoka accidentally discovered one. He treated two schizophrenia patients who were both institutionalized, and practically catatonic, with minocycline, an old antibiotic usually used for acne. Both completely normalized on the antibiotic. When Dr. Miyaoka stopped it, their psychosis returned. So he prescribed the patients a low dose on a continuing basis and discharged them.

Minocycline has since been studied by others. Larger trials suggest that it’s an effective add-on treatment for schizophrenia. Some have argued that it works because it tamps down inflammation in the brain. But it’s also possible that it affects the microbiome — the community of microbes in the human body — and thus changes how the immune system works.

Dr. Yolken and colleagues recently explored this idea with a different tool: probiotics, microbes thought to improve immune function. He focused on patients with mania, which has a relatively clear immunological signal. During manic episodes, many patients have elevated levels of cytokines, molecules secreted by immune cells. He had 33 mania patients who’d previously been hospitalized take a probiotic prophylactically. Over 24 weeks, patients who took the probiotic (along with their usual medications) were 75 percent less likely to be admitted to the hospital for manic attacks compared with patients who didn’t.

The study is preliminary, but it suggests that targeting immune function may improve mental health outcomes and that tinkering with the microbiome might be a practical, cost-effective way to do this.

Watershed moments occasionally come along in medical history when previously intractable or even deadly conditions suddenly become treatable or preventable. They are sometimes accompanied by a shift in how scientists understand the disorders in question.

We now seem to have reached such a threshold with certain rare autoimmune diseases of the brain. Not long ago, they could be a death sentence or warrant institutionalization. Now, with aggressive treatment directed at the immune system, patients can recover. Does this group encompass a larger chunk of psychiatric disorders? No one knows the answer yet, but it’s an exciting time to watch the question play out.

Moises Velasquez-Manoff, the author of “An Epidemic of Absence: A New Way of Understanding Allergies and Autoimmune Diseases” and an editor at Bay Nature magazine, is a contributing opinion writer.



This article is important on so many levels for Lyme/MSIDS patients as behavior/cognitive issues as well as immune-related issues are often present in those affected.  Killing pathogens is only one arm of treatment, that while important, is only part of the picture.  Detoxifying these pathogens as well as supporting the immune system is just as important.  Dealing with imbalances is a must.

Also noteworthy is the hyperthermia potential for Lyme/MSIDS as well as the impact of minocycline that while on it, schizophrenia patients completely normalized but when stopped their psychosis returned and how he prescribed the patients a low dose on a continuing basis.

Hmmmmm, the state medical board should come after him for overprescribing antibiotics….like they do Lyme doctors.

I personally found minocycline to be one of the most effective drugs I took.

Just for the record, I hate antibiotics, but they work.  I continue to be a human Guinea Pig and try many, many things, but nothing yet compares to antibiotics.  Recently an experienced Lyme practitioner in Wisconsin told me her patients do well off treatment for a year or two but then they suffer a relapse requiring a stint of antibiotics and/or herbs.  This has certainly been our experience as well.  

More on Mino:

More on the Immune system and schizophrenia:

Other brain abnormalities with Lyme/MSIDS:

BTW: t. gondii has been found in ticks (Ixodes ricinus), and these ticks also transmit Lyme and tick-borne encephalitis virus:, and  The story of Susannah Cahalan as well as the story of how a boy’s Lyme Disease Morphs into Autoimmune encephalopathy. It took 10 years and 20 doctors to find out 12-year-old Patrik had Lyme disease. Just 4 months later the doctors discovered he also has a condition where his immune system attacks his brain. “According to a Wisconsin specialist, 80% of his PANS/PANDAS patients have Lyme and other coinfections. This is important to know and tell others about, remembering that tick borne illness testing is abysmal. Getting to a specialist who understands this complexity is paramount. Another helpful tip is printing out and going through checklists with the children as discussing symptoms is quite helpful. Children aren’t experienced in this type of verbal specificity, so be patient and listen.


Hotter Bodies Better at Fighting Disease

Hotter Bodies Better at Fighting Disease

Having a “hot body” has more benefits than ever before, thanks to new scientific findings on the role that elevated body temperature plays in helping fight infections and ward-off disease

A 2018 study examining the role that temperature plays in the body’s inflammatory response has demonstrated that the hotter our body temperature, the more effective our immune system becomes at fighting tumors, healing wounds, and fighting infections.

Researchers at the Universities of Warwick and Manchester in the UK recently published the paper entitled, Temperature regulates NF-κB dynamics and function through timing of A20 transcription,[1] in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA. Acknowledging that inflammation is often accompanied by changes in body temperature, researchers sought to close the gap of information on how these phenomena may be linked.

Using an experimentation method incorporating mathematical modeling, researchers from the University’s Mathematics Institute partnered with biologists, infectious disease specialists, epidemiologists and other scientists to better understand these systemic interactions. These models were used to calculate cellular responses to inflammation, such as how small increases in body temperature affect specific genes, including keyinflammatory regulators.

Biologists focused on the actions of a protein called ‘Nuclear Factor kappa B’ (NF-κB). When inflammation markers are in the bloodstream, NF-κB proteins “switch on” by moving into and out of the nucleus of cells, turning genes on and off in response to inflammation. This cellular-signaling works on a biological clock, with cells activated for a period of time to respond to the perceived source of inflammation. A healthy NF-κB response allows the body to effectively suppress tumors and infections, and aids in rapid wound-healing. An uncontrolled NF-κB response is associated with inflammatory diseases such as psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis, and Crohn’s disease.

Mathematical models were used to test the correlation of the rate of this NF-κB “clock” to changes in body temperature. Researchers discovered that if the body temperature is lower than normal, around 94℉, the NF-κB clock slows down. This has the effect of slowing the body’s response rate to wounds and infections. When the body temperature is higher than normal (>98.6℉), as in the case of fever, the NF-κB clock speeds up and continues to increase with each degree of uptick in body temperature. This increased physiological response to inflammation is associated with rapid wound healing, fewer and shorter infections, and even anti-cancer benefits.

Researchers correctly predicted that a protein called A20 holds a critical key in this process. When A20, the central gatekeeper in inflammation and immunity,[2] was removed from cells during experimentation, the NF-κB clock lost its correlative link with body temperature. This link helps explain why our bodies cycle through normal changes in body temperature (+/- 1.5 degrees) over the course of a 24-hour day.

Lead mathematician David Rand, Professor of Mathematics and member of the University of Warwick’s Zeeman Institute for Systems Biology and Infectious Disease Epidemiology, commented:

“The lower body temperature during sleep might provide a fascinating explanation into how shift work, jet lag or sleep disorders cause increased inflammatory disease.”

Researchers concluded that cellular response to inflammation may be “mechanistically and functionally regulated by temperature,” clearing the way for new drugs that control inflammation by more precisely targeting the A20 protein.

Professor Mike White, lead biologist from the University of Manchester, noted that these findings validate our understanding of why

influenza and cold epidemics tend to be worse in the winter when temperatures are cooler,” and that “mice living at higher temperatures suffer less from inflammation and cancer.” Said White: “These changes may now be explained by altered immune responses at different temperatures.”

Bring the Heat to Boost Immunity

Fever is a normal part of a healthy immune response that is often met by over-reaction. Fever is produced when we come into contact with toxins, E. coli bacterium, for example, that introduce pyrogens into the bloodstream. Pyrogens are toxins that infect the body and stimulate a fever-response. The immune system identifies pyrogens as threats, alerting the hypothalamus to signal the body to generate and retain heat in the form of a fever.

Medication designed to suppress a therapeutic fevercan do more harm than good. According to Harvard Medical School, an adult has a fever when his or her temperature exceeds 100.4℉. A fever is not considered medically urgent until it exceeds 104℉,[3] at which point measures should be taken to cool the body and seek immediate medical attention.

Pyrogens signal the immune system when a dangerous toxin has entered the bloodstream. But what about microtoxins that we are exposed to everyday? Persistent organic pollutants such as chemical fertilizers from agro-runoff are in the soil, air, and water of most places in America. Heavy metals loosed from the Earth by industrial operations become airborne and seep into soil and water tables. Plasticizers like phthalates are found in umbilical cord tissue and breast milk, and in the fat cells of most Americans. Most of us don’t get a fever every time we walk outside, but we should not mistake this apparent lack of bodily reaction for a lack of bodily harm.

“The dose makes the poison,” is more than just a colloquialism; it is a chemical reality that has allowed for questionable standards for public drinking water, mass-produced foods, and air quality in the United States. Until recently, medical science had essentially discounted the dangers of low-dose toxins. Difficulty with accurate testing methods, as well as the inability to affect rapid policy and procedural change, are among the reasons why scientists had left this question largely unexplored. Thankfully, this has changed in the last decade, and not a moment too soon: recent studies show that low-dose toxins can be among the most dangerous of all chemical exposures.[4]

In a landmark study released at the end of 2017,[5] scientists found that

“widely disseminated chemicals and pollutants…are proportionately more toxic at the lowest levels of exposure,” and “we will need to achieve near-zero exposures to protect public health.”

Other recent studies have shown that microdoses can and do impact health, including increased risk of neurodegenerative diseases,[6] hormonal disturbances,[7] and increased risk of cancers.[8] Since we can’t snap our fingers and make environmental toxins go away, a diligent approach to disease prevention includes enhancing our immune system and efficiently dumping toxins on a regular basis.

Thankfully, we don’t need to become sick with fever to reap the disease-fighting advantages of a body temperature boost. There are natural ways to hack our body heat that also speed detox—and are often downright enjoyable! Whether you patronize a health club or implement a DIY solution, here are three healthful therapies that will help you turn up the heat.

Break a Sweat

Your body has a powerful, natural system for detoxifying that doesn’t require you to suffer the discomforts of being under-the-weather. All you have to do is pick your favorite exercise and break a sweat! Sweating is one of mankind’s primary mechanisms for eliminating toxins and purifying the body. Sweating naturally raises body temperature, dumps wastes, and stimulates biochemical activity, including increased circulation of blood and lymphatic fluid.

A 2011 study published in the Archives of Environmental and Contamination Toxicology, observed that dangerous metals and petrochemicals were detected in the sweat of study participants that were not seen, or were seen in differing levels, in urinalysis and blood serum tests conducted on the same patients. This finding prompted researchers to call for “sweat analysis to be considered as an additional method for monitoring bioaccumulation of toxic elements in humans.”

You can induce a sweat with intense exercise or take a more leisurely approach through sunbathing. Sunbathing raises body temperature when photons penetrate the skin, stimulating production of Vitamin D and energizing the water in our cells. UV and radiant heat make H2O’s charge, polarity, and conductivity stronger, while blood, lymph, and other body fluids become thinner. This speeds circulation, moving oxygen-rich blood in, and waste products, out. Getting a deep, purifying sweat several times per week can greatly enhance the efficiency at which our bodies remove these everyday toxins.

Sauna Therapy

Another low-impact option for increasing body temperature is sauna therapy. Saunas can be enjoyed in many forms, including traditional dry sauna, steam sauna, and infrared sauna. In a dry sauna, humidity is kept between 10-20%, with temperatures reaching as high as 185℉. Body temperatures easily reach elevated levels during sauna, and can be safely sustained for around 15-30 minutes, for most individuals.

Dry or Finnish sauna is the standard in many countries and is widely regarded as a healthful way to purify and relax the body. But the benefits of sauna extend well beyond relaxation. A 2002 study introduced twenty patients suffering from chronic heart failure to daily, 15-minute dry sauna sessions. Results showed that 17 of the 20 patients had improved vascular and cardiac function after just two weeks of sauna therapy.

Wet or steam sauna has a different host of health benefits. Steam is healing for many respiratory ailments, and can deeply penetrate sore, aching muscles. Hot tubs can reach temperatures of 104℉, and for some, is a gentler way of achieving increased body heat. According to Harvard Health, “a study of 15 men with coronary artery disease showed that 15 minutes in a hot tub produced less circulatory stress than 15 minutes on a stationary bike.” Hot tubbing has also been shown to safely lower high blood pressure.[9]

Infrared saunas use warm, infrared heaters to emit light waved that are absorbed by the surface of the skin. In a 2010 study comparing infrared and steam saunas, researchers found that the sweat from the infrared sauna contained more bismuth, cadmium, chromium, mercury, and uranium. The steam sauna caused higher levels of arsenic, aluminum, cobalt, copper, manganese, nickel, lead, tin, thallium, and zinc to be excreted.

Whatever form of sauna you choose, you can achieve an even greater immunity boost by plunging into cold water in-between bouts of heat. This quick temperature shift agitates body fluids that have become stagnant from periods of inactivity and is great for enhancing circulation.


Therapeutic heating, or thermotherapy, applies to any form of therapy in which heat is applied to achieve physical improvement or relief from symptoms. Whether it’s applying a hot water bottle to an aching muscle group or taking a hot bath with Epsom salts, thermotherapy can achieve low-level increases in body temperature, and is a useful form of easy-to-render comfort and relief from aches and pains.

Heat wraps and pads are employed to great efficacy for treating muscle spasms, herniated disks, eye pain, and other types of musculoskeletal issues. A 2002 study found that warm paraffin wax baths were useful in improving range-of-motion in sufferers of rheumatoid arthritis.[10]Objective improvements were seen in ability to pinch fingers together, improved grip strength, and reduced pain and stiffness when compared to controls after four consecutive weeks of treatment. Treatments such as these can be a useful adjunct to traditional arthritis treatment and may allay the need for habitual pain medication.

Thermotherapy isn’t limited to mundane applications like heating pads—you can also find it in-use as a space-age, laser beam used to fight cancer. Intense heat is directed via infrared laser into the eyes of cancer patients, where it effectively heats and kills retinoblastoma tumor cells that form inside the eye.[11] Other low-level laser therapies are being employed for the treatment of chronic pain[12]and arthritis, with other therapeutic uses for laser currently under development.














Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of GreenMedInfo or its staff.





Coconut Oil Poisonous?


By Dr. Bruce Fife

Coconut oil is poisonous, so claims Karin Michels, PhD, a part-time professor at Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health.

Her comments given in a talk at the University of Freiburg, Germany, sparked a media frenzy with headlines such as, “Coconut Oil is Pure Poison Harvard Professor Claims” appearing in newspapers and on the internet.

What makes Dr. Michels an authority on coconut oil? She is not a physician, or a nutritionist, or even a biologist. Her PhD is in biostatistics. Her specialty is statistics—manipulating numbers—not the study of diet or fats and oils. From her profile on the Harvard website, it appears she has never published any studies on saturated fat, let alone on coconut oil. Her comments were not based on any of her own published research, but were simply her opinion based on old, outdated theories about saturated fats.

Michels calls coconut oil “pure poison,” saying it was “one of the worst foods you can eat” because it is full of saturated fat, and “saturated fatty acids can clog your arteries.” She adds that “there is no study that proves significant health benefits of coconut oil.”

Dr. Michels makes three general claims:

  1. saturated fats cause heart disease
  2. coconut oil is a poison and one of the worst foods we could eat
  3. there are no studies that show any health benefits to coconut oil.

Let’s look at what the science actually says about each of these statements.

Saturated Fats Cause Heart Disease

There has never been a study published that has been able to show that saturated fats or coconut oil cause heart disease. The diet-heart disease hypothesis that has been popular for the past 6 decades basically states that heart disease is caused by high cholesterol. Many studies have shown that some saturated fats can raise blood cholesterol, and therefore it has be assumed that eating too much saturated fat can promote or even cause heart disease. Researchers have been trying to prove this hypothesis for over a half a century without success. In fact, many studies have seriously challenged this hypothesis and serious researchers have now moved on to studying new, more likely, causes for heart disease.

Cholesterol is no longer considered the evil villain as it was once portrayed. There are many types of cholesterol, some good and some potentially harmful. Saturated fats, and in particular coconut oil, have been shown to raise HDL, the good cholesterol, that has been shown to protect against heart disease. The ratio of total cholesterol to HDL cholesterol is considered one of the most accurate and reliable indicators of heart disease risk. Coconut oil raises HDL, which lowers the cholesterol ratio, thus lowering the risk of heart disease.1

It is apparent that Dr. Michels has not kept up with the current science on coconut oil or fats and oils in general. Earlier this year researchers at the University of Cambridge School of Clinical Medicine published a study on the relationship between coconut oil and heart disease risk. The researchers compared the effects of coconut oil with butter and olive oil. Butter was chosen to represent a commonly used highly saturated animal fat and extra virgin olive oil was chosen as it is generally regarded as one of, if not the healthiest of fats. The study involved 96 participants who were assigned to consume 50 mg (about 3 tablespoons) of one of each of the three oils daily for 4 weeks as a part of their ordinary diet. The researchers found that coconut oil dramatically raises the protective HDL cholesterol without affecting the LDL or so-called bad cholesterol. Coconut oil lowered the cholesterol ratio, and the risk of heart disease, more than either of the other two fats, indicating that it is even more heart-friendly than extra virgin olive oil.2

In recent years numerous studies have exonerated saturated fat as a cause of heart disease and put to rest the outdated diet-heart disease hypothesis. Last year the Lancet, one of the most prestigious medical journals in the world, published a study involving a team of 37 researchers from 18 countries. They gathered data on 135,000 subjects to evaluate heart disease risk in relation to fat intake. They discovered that fat consumption protected against heart disease and increased lifespan. Those people who cut back on fats, including saturated fat, had far shorter lives than those who ate coconut oil, butter, cheese, and meats. Consuming high levels of all fats, cut early death rates by up to 23 percent. The researchers stated that they found no correlation between saturated fat consumption and cardiovascular disease and that current dietary restrictions on saturated fat should be revised.3

This isn’t the only study in recent years that has called for a revision on the recommendation to restrict saturated fats. A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition a year earlier investigated whether dietary saturated fat was associated with ischemic heart disease. The study involved 35,597 participants. The researchers also concluded that high saturated fat intake was not associated with increased risk of ischemic heart disease.4

In 2010 a groundbreaking study was published clearly showing that saturated fats do not cause heart disease. The study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition analyzed all the previous studies with data for dietary saturated fat intakes and the risk of cardiovascular disease. This meta-analysis combined the data from 21 previously published studies, involving over 347,000 subjects. The study showed that there was no connection between saturated fat consumption and heart disease. Those people who ate the greatest amount of saturated fat where no more likely to suffer a heart attack or stroke than those who ate the least. No matter how much saturated fat one ate, the incidence of heart disease was not affected. This was the most complete review of the medical research on saturated fat ever done up to this time.5

Four years later, a different group of researchers from Cambridge University published another meta-analysis. This time the researchers combined the data from 72 previously published studies involving more than 600,000 participants from 18 countries. The researchers basically combined all the highest quality studies on fats and diet that had been done for the past several decades and analyzed them together. The results confirmed the previous meta-analysis—there is no connection between saturated fat intake and heart disease.6

The studies are clear, neither saturated fat nor coconut oil cause or even promote heart disease. Because they raise good HDL cholesterol and lower the cholesterol ratio, if anything, they help to protect against it.

Coconut Oil Is a Poison and One of the Worst Foods We Could Eat

Dr. Michels calls coconut oil a “pure poison.” She claims it is not just a poison, but a “pure” poison; the connotation is, that it is extremely dangerous at even the smallest dosage. What is a poison? According to the English Oxford Living Dictionary, poison is defined as, “A substance that is capable of causing the illness or death of a living organism when introduced or absorbed.” Does coconut oil fit this definition? Not hardly.

Coconut oil has been a major part of the diet of millions of people for thousands of years. In all that time it has never been known to cause any illness or kill anyone. On the contrary, there are many plants that are poisonous such as hemlock, belladonna (deadly nightshade), and death cap mushrooms. Consuming any of them, even in small amounts, will bring about sudden illness and quick death. Coconut oil, on the other hand, can be consumed daily in relatively large quantities without any ill effect. I know some people who consume as much as 12 tablespoons (180 ml) a day and are in excellent health.

According the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) coconut oil is perfectly harmless. It is included among the FDA’s exclusive GRAS (Generally Regarded as Safe) list of food substances. To be included on this list requires rigorous testing to confirm that the item is safe. Coconut oil is given a GRAS classification of “1,” which is the highest or safest category within the GRAS list. According to the FDA this means that all available studies and historical data have shown that there is “no evidence” that shows or even “suggests” that coconut oil is harmful in any way.7

It is ironic that Dr. Michels calls coconut oil a poison, because it has proven to be not only harmless, but highly effective in saving the lives of people who have ingested actual poisons. The medical literature has described numerous instances in which coconut oil has been used in hospital settings as an antidote to otherwise fatal poisonings. For instance, the use of coconut oil has become a routine practice in some hospitals in the treatment of aluminum phosphide poisoning.8 Aluminum phosphide is a common poison used for rodent control. There is no other known antidote and poisonings are almost always fatal unless treated with coconut oil.

Using coconut oil to nullify the effects of poisons is not that unusual. Researchers have known for many years about the detoxifying properties of coconut oil. Numerous animal studies have shown that coconut oil blocks the deleterious effects of a number of different chemical toxins. Coconut oil has been shown to alleviate the effects of at least 36 known toxins ranging from industrial solvents to aflatoxin.9

Calling coconut oil a pure poison only illustrates Dr. Michels’ lack of knowledge about coconut oil, which makes anything she says about it totally unreliable.

There Are No Studies That Show Any Health Benefits to Coconut Oil

One of the most common arguments given in an attempt to discredit coconut oil is to claim that there is no evidence proving coconut oil has any health benefits. When a doctor or professor makes this statement, he or she is inferring that there are no studies to support the use of coconut oil as a healthy fat. They are counting on the listener to take their word on this simply because they are considered an expert. In reality, what they are doing is exposing their own ignorance and lack of knowledge on the subject.

When someone makes this type of statement it means they have not bothered to make even the slightest effort to find the facts. If they had, they would have found an abundance of information and research on coconut oil describing its many health benefits. Currently, there are over 10,000 studies on coconut oil listed in the medical literature. Most of these studies can be easily accessed on the internet.

If you go to my website, and look under the heading “Medical Research,” you will find a listing of hundreds of studies. Here you will find references to an abundance of published studies showing the therapeutic or beneficial effects of coconut oil on cardiovascular health, immune function, cancer, diabetes, liver and kidney health, digestive function, weight management, and much more. To say that there is no evidence for the health benefits of coconut oil is totally wrong and indicates that the speaker is either woefully ignorant, too lazy to do any research, or lying.

If you want to know the truth about saturated fats and coconut oil you should not listen to professors who have no idea what they are talking about, instead listen to researchers who have actually researched the topic. One of the reasons why Dr. Michels’ comments received such notoriety is because of her association with Harvard. Being a Harvard professor gives a person some air of authority. However, there are other Harvard professors who are far more qualified than Dr. Michels on this subject, who have studied and published works on the health effects of coconut oil. One group of Harvard researchers that includes George L. Blackburn, MD, PhD, Edward Mascioli, MD, and Vigan K. Babyan, PhD state,

“Coconut oil has an important medical role to play in nutrition, metabolism, and health care. Indeed, properly formulated and utilized, coconut oil may be the preferred vegetable oil in our diet and the special hospital foods used promoting patient recovery.”

These researchers made this statement after having spent years studying the health effects of coconut oil and other fats. Their comments hold far more authority than a biostatistician who apparently has never even bothered to do even an internet search on the subject.


  1. Assuncao, ML, et al. Effects of dietary coconut oil on the biochemical and anthropometric profiles of women presenting abdominal obesity. Lipids 2009;44:593-601.
  2. Khaw, KT, et al. Randomised trial of coconut oil, olive oil or butter on blood lipids and other cardiovascular risk factors in healthy men and women. BMJ Open 2018;8:e020167.
  3. Dehghan, M, et al. Associations of fats and carbohydrate intake with cardiovascular disease and mortality in 18 countries from five continents (PURE): a prospective cohort study. Lancet 2017;390:2050-2062.
  4. Praagman, J, et al. The association between dietary saturated fatty acids and ischemic heart disease depends on the type and source of fatty acid in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition-Netherlands cohort. Am J Clin Nutr 2016;103:356-365.
  5. Siri-Tarino, PW, et al. Meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies evaluating the association of saturated fat with cardiovascular disease. Am J Clin Nutr 2010;91:535-546.
  6. Chowdhury, R, et al. Association of dietary, circulating, and supplement fatty acids with coronary risk: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Ann Intern Med 2014;160:398-406.
  8. Singh Baiwa, SJ, et al. Management of celphos poisoning with a novel intervention: a ray of hope in the darkest of clouds. Anesth Essays Res 2010;4:20-24.
  9. Fife, B. Ketone Therapy: The Ketogenic Cleanse and Anti-Aging Diet. Piccadilly Books, Ltd.: Colorado Springs, CO; 2017.


Information on Dr. Fife here:

Dr. Bruce Fife is a certified nutritionist and naturopathic physician. He is the author of more than 20 books including The Coconut Oil Miracle, The New Arthritis Cure, and Stop Alzheimer’s Now!: How to Prevent and Reverse Dementia, Parkinson’s, ALS, Multiple Sclerosis, and Other Neurodegenerative Disorders. He serves as the director of the Coconut Research Center in Colorado.

News story on Michels here: