Bowel-whisperer Patrick Holford has some disturbing ideas about vaccination. If you pay a subscription to him, you can consult his special online reports on a number of topics. One of these reports is about vaccination. I’m accustomed to anti-vax denialism and general crankery but reading this report was like allowing my eyes to turn into two fists and pummel my brain.
Holford has a touching faith in the value of supplements and homeopathic vaccinations that is difficult to share: understandably, perhaps, there is a dearth of supporting evidence or references for some of his more remarkable claims. A hat-tip to Orac for giving me a polite response for the next time somebody tells me that a product/diet ‘supports the immune system’. Orac scrutinises the advertising claims for a herbal remedy that used to claim that it prevented colds until advertising regulations downgraded that claim to ‘helps to support the immune system’. Orac hazards a guess that the people who make these products:
don’t know an antibody from a T-lymphocyte, but now they’re pushing a “boost the immune system” claim. What specific aspect of the immune system are they boosting? Cell-mediated immunity? What cell type? Neutrophils, T-lymphocytes, B-lymphocytes, natural killer cells?
Despite charging for access to this special report on vaccinations, Patrick Holford does not tell us which aspects of the immune system would be ‘boosted’ by diet or supplements or why these confer adequate protection.
Please discuss vaccination with your paediatrican, Health Visitor, GP and other trusted sources: the consensus of medical and scientific evidence is in favour of the vaccination programme for children for whom they are not contra-indicated.