Pharmaceuticals Anonymous

Monday, April 26, 2010

Niacin for Smoking Cessation

A friend writes,

I quit smoking three years ago, in just three days. I had no withdrawal symptoms. I used no patches or
meds. To do this cost me perhaps five dollars.
I owe my quit-smoking method to an observation I made whiletalking with my cousin, who is a medicated schizophrenic.
Smoking and schizophrenia, I noted, seem to go together.
During long-distance calls to him, he kept running off for a smoke. "Gotta go - have to have a
Extraordinary! And it happened during our conversations all the time.

Readings in biochemistry had alerted me to the importance of Niacin - Vitamin B3 - in reversing and controlling one type of schizophrenia. Like pellagra, "the schizophrenias" can be cured with B3. B3 or Niacin is also called Nicotinic Acid.

Might the brain accept Nicotine and Nicotinic Acid like right- and left-hand skeleton keys? If so, did "gotta
have a smoke" mean "I need niacin"?
Was I hooked because my brain craved Niacin?

To quit smoking, I chose a time when I had no tobacco in the house. My lungs hurt and I was motivated.
From the local pharmacy, I purchased some Vitamin C and Niacin - both very cheap. I chose the B3 "flush" variety - and proceeded to load up with both. For three days, every time I went to urinate, I took 500 units of Vitamin C  (one pill, 500 mg) and 100 to 250 mg of Niacin. I experienced some uncomfortable itchy skin flushing, but nothing too painful.

I was delighted to find that Vitamin C detoxed my body, and I had no craving for nicotine. They say that after
3 days, nicotine is no longer in your system, and I have never smoked again.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Canada's Big Pharma Drug War

Canada's Big Pharma Drug War

by Dr. Joel Lexchin

"The Ontario government has recently announced major changes to the way that it will pay for generic drugs for those covered under its public drug plan, primarily people 65 and over and those on social welfare. The aim is to rein in rapidly increasing costs for the Ontario Drug Benefit Program. Up until recently spending has been going up by more than 10% annually and overall across Canada drug costs are the second most expensive part of the health care system behind only hospitals.

The current government made a first attempt to deal with drug spending back in 2006 when it reduced the price for generic medicines from 70% of the brand name drug to 50%. At that time, $222-million in savings (from a drug bill of $3.5-billion) from reduced generic prices and other reforms was predicted. There was never any independent analysis about whether those anticipated savings were realized. Now faced with a deficit of over $20-billion and health care costs that take up 42 cents of every public dollar, the government is looking at a new initiative to rein in at least one segment of health care costs. The question of whether that 42-cent figure represents too much spending on health care or is mostly the product of a series of tax cuts that have reduced government revenue is a crucial issue that must be taken up soon.

The Politics of Generic Drugs

One of the key factors that makes public drug plans affordable is the existence of generic versions for many of the products that are on the provincial formulary. Generic drugs work the same as the original brand-name products but are much lower in cost since generic companies don't incur the research and development expenditures and also don't engage in costly promotion of their products.

However, in order for generic drugs to get used they need to be dispensed by pharmacists and this gives the pharmacy owners a huge stick in dealing with the generic companies. In effect what the pharmacy owners tell the generic companies is that they will not stock their products unless the companies sell to them at a discount. The pharmacy owners are reimbursed by the government at the list price of the medication not the discounted price. Therefore, the discount goes to the pharmacy owners not the government. These discounts amount to about 20% of the price of the drug."

Continues at Link

Sunday, April 18, 2010

NAMI's Road to Recovery and Cure

Roadmap to Recovery & Cure
"Report of the NAMI Policy Research Institute Task Force on Serious Mental Illness Research
The 40-page report is now available!

News release: NAMI Task Force Calls For Stronger, Smarter Investment In Federal Scientific Research on Serious Mental Illnesses
Roadmap to Recovery & Cure full report (PDF, 497kb)
Background information about the Task Force and a list of its members
Take Action Now for Improved Research Funding!

Use the links below to access sample letters and contact information for key policy makers:
Contact your Congressional Representatives
Contact President Bush
Contact Dr. Thomas Insel, Director of the National Institutes of Mental Health (NIMH)
Contact Senators Harkin and Specter, who hold leadership positions on the Senate’s Labor, Health, and Human Services Subcommittee that oversee"

In this download there's nothing about diagnosis of the physical causes of mental illness. It's like an anecdotal drugs ad with footnotes.
PDF Link

The physical causes of mental illness are outlined here and include

*Finding the Medical Causes of "Dementia" in the Elderly: the Genesis Protocols Used by the Los Angeles County Genesis Program

*Finding the Medical Causes of Severe Mental Symptoms:
The Extraordinary Walker Exam by Dan Stradford Founder, Safe Harbor

*Medical Causes of Psychiatric Symptoms (Extensive)

*Medical Causes of Psychosis, Anxiety, and Depression
by Ronald J. Diamond, M.D., Dept. of Psychiatry, University of Wisconsin

*The Medical Evaluation Field Manual of the State of California: Basic Screening Procedures for Finding Medical Causes of Severe Mental Symptoms

*The 29 Medical Causes of Schizophrenia

Only one road makes sense...

Thursday, April 15, 2010

The Integrity in Science Project

A searchable database reveals the corporate interests behind science studies.

"Our Mission
Over the last thirty years, the commercialization of science in the United States and around the world has increased dramatically. The revolution in genetics, patent protections for bioengineered molecules, laws strengthening intellectual property rights, and the 1980 Bayh-Dole Act authorizing licensing and patenting of results from federally-sponsored research created new incentives for scientists, clinicians, and academic institutions to join forces with for-profit industry in an unprecedented array of entrepreneurial activities.

Although many have cheered partnerships between industry and the research community, it is also acknowledged that they entail conflicts of interest that may compromise the judgment of trusted professionals, the credibility of research institutions and scientific journals, the safety and transparency of human subjects research, the norms of free inquiry, and the legitimacy of science-based policy.

For example:

* There is strong evidence that researchers’ financial ties to chemical, pharmaceutical, or tobacco manufacturers directly influence their published positions in supporting the benefit or downplaying the harm of the manufacturers’ product.
* A growing body of evidence indicates that pharmaceutical industry gifts and inducements bias clinicians’ judgments and influence doctors’ prescribing practices.
* There are well-known cases of industry seeking to discredit or prevent the publication of research results that are critical of its products.
* Studies of life-science faculty indicate that researchers with industry funding are more likely to withhold research results in order to secure commercial advantage.
* Increasingly, the same academic institutions that are responsible for oversight of scientific integrity and human subjects protection are entering financial relationships with the industries whose product-evaluations they oversee.

In response to the commercialization of science and the growing problem of conflicts of interest, the Integrity in Science Project seeks to:

* raise awareness about the role that corporate funding and other corporate interests play in scientific research, oversight, and publication;
* investigate and publicize conflicts of interest and other potentially destructive influences of industry-sponsored science;
* advocate for full disclosure of funding sources by individuals, governmental and non-governmental organizations that conduct, regulate, or provide oversight of scientific investigation or promote specific scientific findings;
* encourage policy-makers at all levels of government to seek balance on expert advisory committees and to provide public, web-based access to conflict-of-interest information collected in the course of committee formation;
* encourage journalists to routinely ask scientists and others about their possible conflicts of interests and to provide this information to the public.


Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Ain't misbehavin', just undernourished?

The story of a Russian boy who was adopted by an American and then returned is in the news.
It seems he terrorized the family who adopted him, making threats to kill them, burn down their house.

We wonder if poor nutrition for his genetic type is the cause?

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Torrential Feedback To Reader's Digest Anti-Vitamin Article

Orthomolecular Medicine News Service, April 8, 2010

Torrential Feedback To Reader's Digest Anti-Vitamin Article
No, You Can't Fool All the People All the Time

(OMNS, Apr 8, 2010)
More than half of America now takes nutritional supplements. Here's some of what the vitamin-taking public had to say to Reader's Digest about their anti-vitamin scaremongering:
"The more your readers digest the lies presented in "5 Vitamin Truths and Lies", the sicker they will become. But no need to fear because your sponsors, the pharmaceutical companies, provide the remedy: drugs and lots of them, which are readily available within the pages of your magazine. Seems to me a good return on their investment."
"I'm very disappointed to find out that a reputable publication such as yours would put out such a slanted and biased article about nutritional supplements. I grew up reading Reader's Digest, and used to enjoy it tremendously before it was apparently taken over by pharmaceutical ads. Then, the articles were pure and touched the heart. Now, it seems that they are biased and are only written to support Big Pharma."
"Antioxidants did not cause death from cancer among smokers that you attributed to vitamins. Smoking did."
"So what are you going to follow this with in your next issue Reader's Digest? 'Bacon and Hot Dogs are Actually Good For You' or '10 Ways to Serve Gravy as a Beverage'? I mean, could you BE any more of a disservice to humanity?"
"Can't wait for Reader's Digest's next '5 Truths and Lies' article. Laughter is the best medicine."
"The research demonstrating that vitamin supplements are beneficial in thwarting and healing heart disease, inflammatory disease, Alzheimer's disease, mental illness, diabetes, and more is solid and growing. If the article were accurate, the author might have stated the astonishing discrepancy between the number of deaths per year related to the pharmaceutical industry vs that of the nutraceutical and vitamin industry. ( ) But then, those facts do not support the ad on the back cover of the magazine."
"The Reader's Digest article 'Vitamin Truths and Lies' is simply an outright lie. The only part missing is the TRUTHS."
"I have personally witnessed the healing effects of therapeutic doses of cheap and common vitamin supplements, such as vitamin C, niacin, and others. I think you will find many other readers who echo this sentiment."
"Reader's Digest insults its readership with this type of propaganda. Add another check to the growing list of people who won't be reading any longer."
"If supplement companies advertised in your magazine instead of Big Pharma, the article might have read differently. Needless to say, this was the last Reader's Digest I'll ever read."
"I've been taking vitamins successfully to cure colds and prevent them for the past year. I also feel much better, lost 30lbs, and have more energy than ever. My wife used to have seasonal allergies that are no longer an issue. Vitamins do work when taken in proper doses, with virtually zero side affects, I might add."
"The pharmaceutical companies are trying to protect their monopoly on healthcare by bashing supplements. The alternative to boosting your nutritional intake is to live your life on a large number of prescription drugs and poor food, while 'enjoying' a debilitated existence."
"The Reader's Digest has joined the Flat Earth Society. Shame on you!"
"For seven years I was a regular clinic/hospital visitor due to either severe colds or inflamed tonsils. For my tonsillitis, two EENT specialists had recommended surgical removal. Three years ago, while browsing the internet I came across websites and articles about orthomolecular medicine where I have learned the importance of supplements. In my desperation, I megadoses of vitamin C up to 23,000mg, vitamin E 800 IU, B-complex 300mg, and niacin 600mg. My tonsil inflammation was gone in 5 days."
"How do sleep well at night after these awful lies, misleading the people again? Maybe with some pills from the pharmaceutical industry?"
"When health issues are at stake, I would much rather put my trust in vitamin supplements than have to rely on pharmaceuticals. How many people have died from vitamins? ( ) How many have died from drug complications?" ( )
"As I read their amazingly biased information regarding vitamins, I realized Reader's Digest does publish some nice fiction stories."
"Basic biochemistry and a review of the literature support the benefits of supplementation. Not all supplementation helps. Much supplementation does. Reader's Digest discussed only science that it chose to discuss. Cherry-picking science is bad science. "
"Why did you miss reporting on large studies showing vitamin supplements improve IQ scores in children?" ( and )
"Having made mistakes in my own health column years ago when a reporter for a Los Angeles newspaper, I know how easy it is to disseminate false information. However, with fact checkers and common sense use of the Internet and PubMed I believe your reporter could have discovered many thousands of scientific studies on the health benefits of vitamins and minerals."
"I challenge Reader's Digest to contact the doctors on the Editorial Review Board of the Orthomolecular Medicine News Service, and submit 'Vitamin Truths and Lies' for its critical review, and publish their response in its entirety. "
"I sent a message to the Reader's Digest, lambasting them for the misinformation they had the gall to publish about vitamins. Their reply said that the author is a prize-winning writer who is known for thorough research prior to publication. I asked the Digest for references and citations. I received none."
"Please see ( ) to read the statements from doctors refuting your article on vitamins. At the very least I hope to see Reader's Digest interview some of these researchers and physicians that have been studying and using vitamins/supplements in their practice for years, and write another article with both sides represented. You can also go to which is a website that summarizes current research in nutrition and integrative medicine."
"It works for Prevention magazine, so why not Reader's Digest? I once opened a Prevention magazine and counted 18 drug ads and articles before I came to one on nutrition. Should we expect more from Reader's Digest?"
"You have got to be kidding. You have ignored a flotilla of articles, peer reviewed as well, on the benefits of vitamins for a variety of conditions including macular degeneration. I know this field well as I am an ophthalmologist. The only explanation I can think of is that you have been unduly influenced by your pharmaceutical advertisers."
"I am a registered nurse and read many articles on health. I feel that your recent article on vitamins was very misleading. Please ask the author to research more thoroughly and write a new article."
"Ignorance may be bliss, but when ignorance is reported as if it were a truth in this case it is not bliss but close to a crime. Ignorance accompanied by 15 pages of drug advertisements is closer to a racket."
"For a full and comprehensive research on what vitamins can do you need to go to and where you can find real research, not the kindergarten stuff reported in your April 2010 issue. I have been following the impeccable reporting of the orthomolecular people for years now and will give them an A+ on their content, and you a flat F."
"Your slamming of vitamins and minerals is truly tragic. For those who look to Reader's Digest as a valued resource, you have let them down. You neglect of the thousands of therapeutic nutritional research studies and articles from universities and from other research teams worldwide that you can find easily in Medline, and the Journal of Orthomolecular Medicine. Bad journalism (telling half the story) can result in poor health for millions. I hope your own families weren't reading this article."
To post your comments at the Reader's Digest website, or to read their original biased article if you missed it:
To send your thoughts directly to the Reader's Digest editors:
To learn more about how vitamins safely and effectively fight disease:

The peer-reviewed Orthomolecular Medicine News Service is a non-profit and non-commercial informational resource.

Editorial Review Board:
Carolyn Dean, M.D., N.D. (Canada)
Damien Downing, M.D. (United Kingdom)
Michael Gonzalez, D.Sc., Ph.D. (Puerto Rico)
Steve Hickey, Ph.D. (United Kingdom)
James A. Jackson, PhD (USA)
Bo H. Jonsson, MD, Ph.D (Sweden)
Thomas Levy, M.D., J.D. (USA)
Jorge R. Miranda-Massari, Pharm.D. (Puerto Rico)
Erik Paterson, M.D. (Canada)
Gert E. Shuitemaker, Ph.D. (Netherlands)
Andrew W. Saul, Ph.D. (USA), Editor and contact person. Email:
To Subscribe at no charge:

This article may be reprinted free of charge provided 1) that there is clear attribution to the Orthomolecular Medicine News Service, and 2) that both the OMNS free subscription link and also the OMNS archive link are included.

Link to resources at

celebrate Pictures, Images and Photos
This is the 500th post at Pharmaceuticals Anonymous!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Omega-3 may boost brain function in boys: Study

Maybe there's nothing wrong with hyperactive kids... maybe it's nutritional~! Fish oil is better than Ritalin. Cheaper, too. Our brains are 60% fat by dry weight... makes sense...

Omega-3 may boost brain function in boys: Study
By Stephen Daniells, 24-Feb-2010

"Supplements of the omega-3 fatty acid DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) may alter the function of the brain associated with working memory, according to results of a new study with healthy boys.

Scientists from the University of Cincinnati showed for the first time using neuro-imaging that supplementation with DHA alters the functional activity in cortical attention networks in humans.

“The present findings add to an emerging body of evidence from preclinical and clinical imaging studies that suggest that dietary DHA intake is a robust modulator of functional cortical activity,” wrote lead author Robert McNamara in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

European support

The study follows hot on the heels of, and vindicates, backing from the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) for DHA-related brain and eye health claims for infants.

EFSA’s Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA) said DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) levels of 100mg of per day were appropriate for 7-24 month-old infants along with 200mg per day for pregnant and lactating women.

The DHA claims relating to brain health stated: “DHA intake can contribute to normal brain development of the foetus, infant and young children”

Another shorter chain, omega-3 fatty acid, ALA (alpha linolenic acid), was affirmed as important for the normal brain development of children up to the age of 18 but no levels were specified.

Study details

While there is a growing body of evidence linking DHA to cognitive function, Dr McNamara and his co-workers note that it is unkown how DHA supplementation may affect functional cortical activity in humans. In order to fill this knowledge gap, they recruited 33 health boys aged between 8 and 10 and randomly assigned them to receive one of two doses of DHA (400 or 1200 mg per day, Martek Biosciences) or placebo for eight weeks.

Brain activation patterns were measured using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) during a test of sustained attention (playing video games). The results showed that DHA levels in the membrane of red blood cells (erythrocytes ) increased by 47 and 70 per cent in the low and high dose DHA group, while the placebo groups experienced an 11 per cent drop in DHA levels.

The “main finding” from the fMRI data was an indication of significant increases in the activation of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex part of the brain in the DHA groups – an area of the brain associated with working memory. Changes in other parts of the brain, including the occipital cortex (the visual processing centre) and the cerebellar cortex (plays a role in motor control) were observed.

“These findings suggest that this imaging paradigm could be useful for elucidating neurobiological mechanisms underlying deficits in cortical activity in psychiatric disorders associated with DHA deficiencies, including ADHD and major depression,” wrote the researchers.

The study was co-funded by Martek, the National Institutes of Health, and the Inflammation Research Foundation.

Source: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Published online ahead of print, doi:10.3945/ajcn.2009.28549
“Docosahexaenoic acid supplementation increases prefrontal cortex activation during sustained attention in healthy boys: a placebo-controlled, dose-ranging, functional magnetic resonance imaging study”
Authors: R.K. McNamara, J. Able, R. Jandacek, T. Rider, et al."

"Omega-3 fatty acids

Omega-3 fatty acids are considered essential fatty acids: They are necessary for human health but the body can’t make them -- you have to get them through food. Omega-3 fatty acids can be found in fish, such as salmon, tuna, and halibut, other seafood including algae and krill, some plants, and nut oils. Also known as polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), omega-3 fatty acids play a crucial role in brain function as well as normal growth and development. They have also become popular because they may reduce the risk of heart disease. The American Heart Association recommends eating fish (particularly fatty fish such as mackerel, lake trout, herring, sardines, albacore tuna, and salmon) at least 2 times a week...."

More on Omega-3 and your health from the excellent site of the University of Maryland here

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Test to predict lung cancer in smokers?

"Test predicts lung cancer for smokers
Available within a year, a new screening technique can determine which smokers will develop the disease."
but we have not seen enough to be convinced. Anyone can make a prediction.