Former Visiting Professor Patrick Holford but still Head of Science and Education at Biocare is keen on promoting the value of his 100%health subscription service. He spoke about his service in glowing terms at the recent Allergy and Gluten Free Show 2008 and recently sent around an email that trails a lot of interesting topics for his upcoming mail out to his 100%health subscribers: amonst the topics are where the Cochrane reviewers went wrong and a promise of an updated Holford review of the evidence behind vaccination guidelines.
After numerous studies that showed extra antioxidants reduced risk of disease, some more recent research started to look at their effect on two particular ‘at-risk’ groups – people who smoked and those with cardiovascular disease.
Several of these trials showed that the risk of cancer in smokers increased slightly when they were given beta-carotene. Other studies suggested a small increased risk of heart attack in heart patients who were on medications such as statins and taking vitamin E.
What’s interesting to note, however, is that far from putting the nail in the coffin of antioxidants, these studies give us an interesting insight into how these nutrients work – and why people who smoke or take statins are at risk, unless they adapt (rather than stop) their supplement intake.
For example, the recent Cochrane Review by Bjelakovic et al actually found that people who took BOTH multivitamin AND antioxidant supplements showed no increased risk, and in some cases, a significant decrease in risk. Now why should that be, and what does it tell us about the way antioxidants work?
I believe it points to a simple explanation as to why high-dose vitamin E increases cardiovascular risk, why beta-carotene increases smokers’ risk, and why multivitamins eradicate this risk…
- Why statins make high-dose vitamin E dangerous
- The nutrients that can reduce disease risk for smokers
- Why the Cochrane review is flawed
- The reactions to the review’s findings from scientists whose studies were included
- The positive findings that went unreported
- And most importantly, what you can do to protect yourself – whether you’re taking statins or smoking, are elderly or young, in good health or bad.
We shall probably review these claims in further depth when we learn more about Holford’s arguments and evidence that he cites in support. (We have to admit that we don’t expect more than a reprise of his earlier explanations on these topics. Although he keeps saying that he will, he hasn’t put up an acceptable explanation along these lines since claiming that he would do so after the Horizon 2005: The Truth About Vitamins.Not only do subscribers find out the above but they will also (finally, after claiming he would do this months ago) discover the Holford insights into
the controversial issue of Childhood Vaccinations and looks at the evidence behind the guidelines so many parents are questioning.
Back in March, Holford wrote:
In one survey of 825 parents whose children had symptoms that would classify them as autistic, 55 reported clear signs of regression following the MMR vaccine. That’s 1 in 15 children. I personally have encountered many parents who reported their children rapidly regressed, developing symptoms in the autistic spectrum, following the MMR vaccine.
So, that might be a hint as to how this evidence review will turn out.
Nonetheless, HolfordWatch would be delighted to receive a copy of either of these. If you receive them and would like them to be reviewed, please don’t keep them to yourself but send them along.
 Holford was encouraging people to sign up for 100%health membership so that they might continue to read his insights and interpretations of science that we need to improve our lives so that we enjoy 100%health. He laid it on the line that such excellence has to be paid for:
My job is to help people like you become 100%healthy. I have a company called 100%health. Our mission is to make people 100%healthy. I have a team of researchers. What I do is I write a newsletter, every other month, where we keep exploring the new science to give you something that you can use in your life…That’s my job, to actually find stuff that you can use. [Join 100%health and receive my newsletter and other 100%health membership benefits like the hundreds of special reports that I’ve written.] Quite frankly, it’s the way that I support paying my research team, that’s really what it is about.
HolfordWatch wonders if it depends on whether you call a bit of Googling and text-skimming ‘research’ or think that it equates to an understanding of the science you are passing on to a wider audience. One would hope that this research team has some special understanding but, judging by the usual state of the claims in those newsletters, it doesn’t seem so; it doesn’t even look like someone vaguely brings their maths skills to bear. It’s not even as if the claims in those special reports are up to date because they just seem to be cut and pasted from his books and nobody checks that they are still relevant.