Excerpts From The Book
From The Calcium Lie II: What Your Doctor Still Doesn’t Know by Robert Thompson, M.D. and Kathleen Barnes
We are all victims of health lies. These lies, held with an almost religious zealotry, are quite literally killing us.
Primary among those lies is the notion that bones are made of calcium, with the dogmatic exhortation from almost every doctor on the planet that we all need supplemental calcium in order to have strong bones. This is absolutely untrue and without any reliable scientific evidence. In fact, our bones are made of at least 12 minerals, including calcium, and we need all of them in proper proportions in order to have healthy bones and a healthy metabolism. This is a “no brainer” found in every biochemistry textbook, and yet we are all programmed to believe that we need calcium.
From this scientifically unfounded “get your calcium” supposition comes a cascade of health consequences that are nothing less than devastating. In this book, we will expose The Calcium Lie.
All research confirms our simple observation. It quite simply makes sense: We must abandon the notion that we cannot have strong bones without supplemental calcium. We must reveal the truth behind the Calcium Lie as quickly as possible, and begin to correct our mineral deficiencies and imbalances by replacing trace minerals with balanced trace minerals. Bones are made of minerals, not just calcium. Calcium hardens concrete!
You must know for certain your sodium, calcium and potassium levels and get expert advice about exactly which minerals to replace and in what amounts and which to avoid. All nutritional and medical recommendations without this information are fundamentally and scientifically flawed.
This is serious stuff. Much of our civilization and the health of future generations depend on it. Please do not underestimate the significance of these truths we describe to your long-term health. This is of paramount importance. Tell everyone you know and love to take minerals, not just calcium.
We’ve written and expanded this second edition of this book from a place of passionate conviction that our collective health is at risk from The Calcium Lie and a handful of other nutritional lies to which we are all subjected.
The truths in this second edition include an update of the original text with a few new and added thoughts, more detail, more bold statements, additional new references and a new chapter). We hope what you read here will lead you to a new life of exceptional health. That is anyone’s most precious asset.
From Dr. Robert Thompson:
I am a caring doctor who went to medical school with altruistic ideas and a belief in doing the right thing and serving people. When I completed my medical training, I greeted my chosen career with great excitement about practicing medicine on the cutting edge, and doing the best job I could do for my patients.
Over the next few years, I grew increasingly disenchanted with my profession and with the uncharitable attitudes of many of my colleagues, who frequently resisted basic science and medical advances in the name of protecting their status quo. Even a local hospital where I worked was unhappy with me when some of my more advanced procedures (that included laparoscopic surgeries) resulted in outpatient, rather than inpatient, surgeries and shortened hospital stays. It really burst my idealistic new doctor bubble to learn that this hospital wanted its patients to stay in the hospital longer no matter what the trauma to the patient, because – “ca-ching”—the hospitals make more money that way. I guess I was just ahead of my time. Today, of course, outpatient surgery has become commonplace and routine, as has laparoscopic surgery. For most of these procedures, the routine surgeries and profits are at an all time high.
Finally, in 1996, I decided I was going to quit medicine. I was looking around for another career when I was notified I had been chosen to be listed in an exclusive peer-reviewed directory, as one of the “Best Doctors in America”.
I was overwhelmed by the honor, and the irony, that the honor came at a time when I had decided to hang up my stethoscope for good. Maybe all that training was not a waste after all. I took it as a sign that I was to remain in the medical profession and continue to try to make a difference.
I took it as a call back to my medical school training and ideals, and to some of the basic scientific concepts I seemed to have lost in the intervening years. That was an epiphany for me, and an opportunity for me to take a new look at the way I was treating my patients.
I realized that many of my pregnant patients were taking supplements and that, in order to be conscientious about their treatment, I needed to know more about them: what was good, what was bad, what worked, what didn’t, and how much to take. I began to do more extensive research to find out which ones were safe for use in pregnancy and which ones weren’t.
That opened new doors for me. I began learning about herbs, homeopathics and other natural treatments. I continued to grow and evolve in this process over the next few years, helping patients in new ways, often getting the same results –or sometimes even better — with natural treatments as with prescription drugs, but with less toxicity and fewer side effects.
I soon realized that I was still treating my patients’ symptoms, perhaps with less toxicity, but nevertheless, like most doctors, I wasn’t treating the underlying causes of their symptoms. I began to be more aware of the impact of nutrition in this equation. That opened new insights for me about the supplements people were taking, what was true about human nutrition and, more importantly, what was not true. Eventually, I discovered The Calcium Lie, The Vitamin Lie, The Sodium Lie, The Ascorbic Acid Lie, and other basic Nutritional Lies and I began to realize their impact on my patients’ health and disease processes.
Along the way, I made many observations about what worked and what helped people get better and what didn’t. As I continued to make recommendations to patients, I saw them continually getting better and overcoming their health problems, not just living with them. This is what we physicians were supposed to be doing all along, what a concept!
I was especially pleased to find ways to help my patients with Type 2 diabetes and insulin resistance to overcome their blood sugar problems on a long-term basis. Were they “cured” of their diabetes? Maybe not, but what else can you call it when they have no symptoms and their laboratory tests and blood sugars remain in the normal range over many years?
I was tremendously excited about my discoveries. Unfortunately, I didn’t find other caring physicians who shared my passion and were willing to listen to my ideas. Then I began attending meetings of the American College for Advancement in Medicine (ACAM), American Association of Anti-Aging Medicine (A4M, another whole new medical world opened for me. In ACAM and A4M, I found like-minded doctors who realized there were better ways to treat patients, who were concerned about getting patients better, and who were motivated to find and share them.
I’m not a zealot. I believe there are many good elements to conventional medicine. There are good medications, fantastic surgeries and cures and amazing advancements that were not available a decade or two ago. We don’t need to “throw out the baby with the bathwater.”
However, our current medical system is not only exorbitantly expensive, it has created a system in which doctors are reimbursed for allowing people to get sick rather than for keeping them healthy.
There is something fundamentally wrong with a system in which an insurance company will pay to amputate the leg of a diabetic patient rather than address prevention and healing with nutritional therapies, and hyperbaric oxygen therapy—at less cost. This is a travesty of everything we stand for as physicians, as Americans and as caring people.
The medical profession as a whole has become greedy to a fault, compounded by exorbitant price gouging at every level. There is simply no reasonable excuse for some doctors making hundreds of thousand dollars and sometimes millions at the expense of the people they have been chosen to serve.
The hospitals (especially the “non-profits”), the pharmaceutical and the medical technology industries have quite literally made health care unavailable to the average person. Even insurance companies have struggled to keep up with the exorbitant prices. The system is broken at almost every level. Maybe we should require all physicians to get a salary like those who serve our military based on rank and level of training. Something has to change. Too many people are suffering.
The lack of accountability for poor results has been largely overlooked in the medical profession of the US. The United States is now 46th in men’s mortality with life expectancy of around 76 years, 47th in women’s mortality with life expectancy of 80 years, and the U.S. has dropped to 34th in the world in infant mortality, a drop from 23rd. In spite of all our high-risk obstetrics and perinatal care and all the new technology, specialists and perinatal care, we are the absolute worst in the industrialized world in first day infant mortality.
If our seniors make it to 80 years of age, they have a 40 percent chance of having dementia and not knowing it. Even more worrisome, there has been an increase in maternal death in childbirth in the last decade for the first time in 50 years. We are also among the worst in the world in preterm births with 1 in 8 babies born before full term.
Nearly every disease is increasing:
* Based on the current rate of increase in autism, there will be no normal male babies born in the USA by 2030.
* The current rate of diabetes increase suggests that the diseased will have stricken 95 percent of our adult population by 2030.
* Autoimmune disease now affects over 150 million of our citizens and increases every year.
* The number of c children with life threatening allergies has increased over 1000 percent.
* Toxic superbug bacteria are literally eating us alive.
* Cancer keeps increasing in frequency every decade unabated by our medical profession or its leadership, which seems to be stuck in protecting the status quo, the Almighty Dollar. Just look at the exquisite facilities for the treatment of cancer patients, all the new buildings, all the incredible technology for treating this disease, the expensive experimental drugs, the multi-million dollar radiation therapy centers, and we easily see, Cancer is big business. Cancer now affects nearly 50 percent of our population as does heart and vascular disease.
These are just a few of the most important health problems we face.
Obviously, our health is important to us. Our drug company-driven health care industry spends more than three times as much on our health care as any other developed country in the world (not including nutritional supplements) for what I would consider dismal and embarrassing results.
These statistics do not lie. They keep getting worse. That alone should be a clue we are going the wrong direction. Health care costs in the U.S. are over $2.8 trillion and increasing every year. This is big business! It is nearly five times what we spend on our national defense.
Unfortunately, the nutrition industry also has its flaws. Its focus is largely about sales. It is quite similar to the pharmaceutical industry in many respects, but once again, there are some amazingly effective supplements on the market today.
Physicians need to educate themselves about nutrition and learn to make a real difference in their health and their patient’s health before it is too late. First, physicians must truly care. Rarely does the all-too-frequent commercial admonition to “ask your doctor” really get an educated answer. More likely, it gets an uninformed attitude or belief espoused with ignorant arrogance. The physician most often remains ignorant about these matters by choice.
Supplements can produce good results for you if you take the right ones. There is also tremendous waste here. Exorbitant amounts of money are spent on supplements that have little or no nutritional value or health benefit. Even more important, the best supplement in the world will not be as effective or will not work at all if the basic nutritional needs as outlined in this book are not being addressed or are being done so incorrectly.
I realized that, just as I would try to pick out the best medication for treating a medical problem, I needed to be accountable for trying to help my patients pick out the best supplements to make up for the tremendous nutritional deficiencies in our food and to do so in ways that change our health for the better and in ways that are measurable. Most patients would prefer that their doctors discover and treat the underlying causes of their disease rather than treating the symptoms. Unfortunately, some patients just want a pill to treat their symptoms; they are not really motivated to get better. Being healthy is a choice and a responsibility, not a right.
Your health is your most valuable asset. Obviously it is important to us, we spend exorbitantly on it. But we must take accountability for our results, which at this juncture are quite dismal. We must begin to apply the preventative information we know as in this book.
To keep doing the same things and expecting different results is insanity. To accept the current downward health trends is just plain despicable.
In the end, patients and physicians are going to have to realize that withholding care and rationing of care are likely to become commonplace because, as a society, we simply cannot afford to pay for all the health crises we are developing as our population ages. We must change our collective health now to decrease our future costs in financial and personal terms. We must carefully protect ourselves as best we can from nutritional deficiencies, imbalances and toxins or suffer from ever worsening health statistics.
Colleagues and patients began to encourage me to write this book more than six years ago, before even the first edition of The Calcium Lie was published.
This message is so important, that it has caused the book to keep increasing in sales without an agent, without public appearances, without anything except an important message spreading from person to person.
Now, here comes the second edition. As in the first edition, I am putting this information out there for patients and physicians alike to learn from it and grow into greater health awareness. There are many books out there; however, we believe this one is unique and profound. Since our first edition, and increasing body of research has confirmed almost every claim we have made. Much of the information we discuss has already existed as fact in various references, but has apparently been ignored. This book puts the most important of these facts together. It literally “connects the dots.”
The exposure of The Calcium Lie II (as was the first edition, The Calcium Lie) is huge in terms of its potential impact on health care worldwide, now and in the future. Reversing many long held beliefs, it represents fundamental changes in medical practice recommendations that can’t take place fast enough.
To the best of our ability, we have made an attempt to provide truth, facts and reliable information in simple terms, and in ways the average person can understand.
My co-author, Kathleen Barnes, and I have written this book together, although much of it is in first person based on my experience.
Kathleen Barnes is a health journalist with great depth of experience, not only in conventional medical research and terminology, but through the passion she has had for natural health for more than 30 years. She is author or editor of 20 books, most of them on natural health subjects, and, she wrote a weekly natural health column for Woman’s World magazine for more than six years. Her ability to help translate complex medical terminology into simple and easily understandable terms has helped me to stay on the “straight and narrow” when I tend to get too technical in my concepts.
If you’ve read this book and it resonates with you, tell a friend. Give a copy to a friend. You may be saving a life. Copy the last chapter and give it to your doctor, with our blessing. Better yet, buy a copy as a gift for your doctor. You, and your fellow patients, will reap the benefits if your doctor can be persuaded to invest the few hours it takes to read this book.
We wish you all the best in your quest to maintain and regain your health. If you apply the principles in this book, we have no doubt you will succeed.
—Robert Thompson, M.D., Soldotna, Alaska
—Kathleen Barnes, Brevard, North Carolina