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Orthomolecular Medicine News Service, February 4, 2022
Listen to the Founding Fathers of Orthomolecular Medicine
I'm certainly glad that I did.
by Dwight Kalita, PhD
OMNS (Feb. 4, 2022) I'm going to begin with a personal account that happened to me over 70 years ago. When I was born with a congenital muscle disease called Nemaline Myopathy, I became very sick with aspirational pneumonia. As a very young boy I also experienced 2 other viral pneumonias, and countless episodes of viral bronchitis and head colds. I was walking through a constantly revolving door at my local medical clinic to get symptom-relief cortisone, bronchodilators, and antibiotics. And over and over again for three decades, I walked through that revolving door at the clinic.
Then a little over 40 years ago, I got to play that same game again with my oldest son, Brian, who was also born with Nemaline Myopathy. More respiratory infections and more trips to the doctors and clinic. And more cortisone, more bronchodilators, and more antibiotics. In short, I sadly continued down the path of more and more symptomatic drug relief. I thought to myself: Over and over and over --- been there and done that! But none of those doctors at the clinic or the ER ever recommended to me a preventive approach where Brian and I wouldn't get sick and therefore could stop going through their revolving clinic door.
Then around this time in my life I was fortunate enough to have a dinner with Roger J. Williams, who was President of the American Chemical Society and who discovered pantothenic acid (vitamin B5). I told him about my chronic illnesses throughout most of my life. He then suggested a novel idea to me. He said I should concentrate on boosting my immune system through optimum nutrition and supplements when needed. He suggested a broad range of nutrients with special emphasis on high doses of vitamin D, zinc, and vitamin C. He also introduced me to Dr. Linus Pauling and Dr. Frederick R. Klenner. They all wanted me to get at the root causes of my chronic illnesses (nutrient deficiencies) instead of merely relieving symptoms with drugs. For sure, they all assured me that sometimes drugs are needed, but they all insisted that Brian and I both must first try to build up our immune response to viral invasion.
So instead of practicing crisis medicine (only drugs), we started practicing orthomolecular medicine. And guess what, our ever-recurring pneumonia and viral bronchitis were totally eliminated, and neither one of us have ever had another serious respiratory illness. So that's in a nutshell why I am convinced about using orthomolecular medicine as opposed to symptom-relief crisis medicine. I have personally been there and done that many times, and I now know how the former approach is so far superior to the latter. Obviously, prevention using optimal nutrition takes time to work, and is not fool-proof. You have to understand it and stay with it. But it's far better than being caught in a revolving door at your local clinic.
The term "Orthomolecular Medicine" was first coined by Linus Pauling and is the prevention and treatment of disease by the expert adjustment of substances (vitamins, minerals, trace elements, amino acids, enzymes, hormones, etc.) that are normally present in the human body. It places its reliance on these naturally occurring agents in preference to, but not to the exclusion of, chemicals/drugs which are foreign to the human body.
Three of the founding fathers of orthomolecular medicine, Drs. Pauling, Klenner, and Williams had over seven decades of collective experience with orthomolecular medicine. After working together with all three of these scientists on A Physician's Handbook on Orthomolecular Medicine, they taught me that our bodies need optimum nutrition in order to ward off any serious illness in the body. Dr. Pauling was very passionate about this: he wrote on the front cover of the Handbook: "I believe it will soon be recognized that the development of orthomolecular medicine during the last 25 years is the most important contribution to medicine and to the well-being of people in this period."
As an example of orthomolecular medicine, these pioneers knew that intravenous vitamin C can be effectively used to treat a serious viral infection like pneumonia. And they all knew that once a deficiency is established by viral invasion, then IVC treatment of viral lung infections must be very intensive so as to totally saturate the granulocytes, monocytes, and lymphocytes, and must continue for a specified period of time in order to be successful. Or in other words, unless these white blood cells are totally saturated with vitamin C for an optimum period of time, they are like soldiers without bullets!
More specifically, Dr. Klenner, who had 30-plus years of clinical experience with high levels of intravenous vitamin C, discovered that 50 grams (50,000 mg) sodium ascorbate in a Ringer's solution for a continuous 24-hour drip, repeated for 2-5 days, was an optimum dose and duration to eliminate most viral pneumonias. He also added 2 grams of calcium gluconate every 24 hours and administered other minerals because that high IVC dosage would chelate minerals out of the body.
And speaking of additional calcium gluconate, Dr. Williams once looked me in the eye and said "I'm going to tell you the most important fact about any orthomolecular medicine therapy." He continued by emphasizing that nutrients, unlike most drugs, work together as a team. As such, when treating viral pneumonia, or any other illness, he insisted that we must also introduce other nutrients such as vitamin B complex, zinc, vitamin D, calcium, magnesium, vitamin A, etc. Dr. Klenner agreed and routinely added necessary IV nutritional support for blood-tested deficiencies in addition to vitamin C.
Unfortunately, even some modern orthomolecular physicians forget the teamwork mandate when treating a serious illness in the human body. They forget that in order to get optimum results, they must always support their patients with the optimum levels of all nutrients and other substances necessary for optimum health. Indeed, there is no single magic bullet, and that's true for IVC as well.
Moreover, Dr. Williams always insisted that when quoting studies on specific nutrients, we have to keep in mind that nutrients, unlike drugs, must be seen as an inseparable team of agents that work together for optimum health. As such, studies that test single nutrients the way single drugs are tested are inherently flawed in their assumptions. Their conclusions, therefore, must also be seen as suspect.
I know that the above three pioneers in orthomolecular medicine would applaud all the doctors/scientists around the world currently involved in OMNS. Although not here with us today, I'm certain they would enthusiastically say: Keep up the good work! One day I was speaking with Dr. Pauling and complaining to him about the numerous physicians who do not understand the importance of orthomolecular medicine. He got a big grin on his face and then started laughing. He said: "Dwight, don't despair! Physicians are just people who are down on what they are not up on." It lifts my spirits every day when I think about all the scientists involved with the Orthomolecular Medicine News Service who are most certainly "up" on the orthomolecular medicine that Drs. Pauling, Klenner and Williams envisioned so many years ago.
1. Williams RJ, Kalita DK (2013) A Physician's Handbook on Orthomolecular Medicine. Pergamon. ISBN-13: 978-1483172293
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Albert G. B. Amoa, MB.Ch.B, Ph.D. (Ghana)
Seth Ayettey, M.B., Ch.B., Ph.D. (Ghana)
Ilyès Baghli, M.D. (Algeria)
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Patrick Holford, BSc (United Kingdom)
Suzanne Humphries, M.D. (USA)
Ron Hunninghake, M.D. (USA)
Bo H. Jonsson, M.D., Ph.D. (Sweden)
Dwight Kalita, Ph.D. (USA)
Felix I. D. Konotey-Ahulu, MD, FRCP, DTMH (Ghana)
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