Bruce A. Roe
Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry
Ponca City, Oklahoma 74601
August 14, 1989
W. Lopsinger, Publisher
121 North Main
P.O. Box 131
Newkirk, Okla. 74647
have reviewed material supplied to me concerning the proposed
alcohol and drug treatment program (Narconon) to be established
on the previous Chilocco Indian School Site.
a previous Medical Director of two alcohol and drug rehabilitation
units, I feel I am qualified by training, interest and experience
to comment specifically on the proposed treatment center's so-called
Purification Rundown is apparently either all or part of Narconon's
initial detoxification program. The seventeen page document
describing the Purification Rundown is in general a poorly written
program. There is extremely poor organization. The material
is full of generalizations that have no substantiation in fact.
There are internal inconsistent statements. There is no documentation.
Purification Rundown is somewhat patterned after many reputable
detoxification programs in which diet, exercise, education and
behavioral modification are used. But due to the above mentioned
deficiencies as well as several outright untruths, I think that
it is fair to say that the Purification Rundown is without merit.
the entire bulletin describing the Purification Rundown is completely
full of the above mentioned problems, I will try to illustrate
some specific ones that seem the most glaring.
page 165 the author states "apparent gain occurs by cleaning
up the body and can be seen as an end all in itself, this is
not the case.." And on page 166 the author states, "removal
of these live hostile chemical substances from the body of any
person apparently speeds and in some cases even makes possible
case gain. It is even worth doing for its own sake." These
two statements are not consistent with each other.
page 167 the author states "the purpose of outside running
is so that impurities held in the system can be released and
are pumped out." There is certainly no scientific documentation
that exercise significantly speeds up the detoxification process.
significant portion of the Purification Rundown is devoted to
running and Sauna Treatments from four to five hours a day.
The author states throughout, that sweating increases the rate
at which drugs in general leave the body. This is certainly
untrue of many drugs, as most drugs of abuse are eliminated
from the body by detoxification through the liver, or by passage
through the kidneys, or occasionally by passage through the
minute quanitities of some drugs may appear in the sweat it
is such a small fraction of drug elimination that no matter
how much a patient were made to sweat it could not significantly
increase his clearing of most drugs.
page 169 the author states "there is no such thing as a
fat cell." This is absolutely false and can be disproven
by any college student who has had a course in Histology.
author's recommendation for taking Vegetable Oil to replace
the oil in our fat tissues that are contaminated with drugs
has no documentation or basis in fact.
the most blatantly false statement made in the entire document
occurs on page 172 when the author states "niacine's biochemical
reaction is my own private personal discovery in the middle
of the 1950's." Niacin was discovered several decades before
the 1950's and its importance and multiple biochemical reactions
have been studied from that time until present.
author further goes on to state "niacin runs out radiation"...
and that it will often cause a very hot flush and prickly itchy
skin which can last up to one hour or longer." There is
no scientific documentation that niacin in any way gets radiation
out of the body. The symptoms of which the author talks are
due to dilation of the blood vessels of the skin and is a known
side-effect of niacin administration.
addition there are aspects of the program which I find medically
unsafe. Specifically running in a vinyl sweat suit followed
by a Sauna from 140 to 180° from four to five hours a day
certainly is going to cause dehydration and possibly heat injury
in some patients.
author even notes this on page 168 when he discusses sodium
chloride and potassium replacement, stating "it is not
mandatory for every individual on the program, it is only necessary
as a treatment if the symptoms of salt depletion, heat exhaustion
occur." This suggests that the author expects that in many
cases heat exhaustion will occur. Any treatment which leads
to heat exhaustion is unsound and unsafe.
author further states "before beginning the Purification
Program a person must first get written medical officer OK."
seems quite apparent that 'medical officer' does not equate
with 'medical doctor or physician' as the author on page 177
goes on to say "the medical officer gives a person an OK
to go on to the program after insuring the person's blood pressure
is normal and he is not anemic. The medical officer does these
checks himself where he is trained to do so."
it seems medically unqualified persons are going to be supervising
this program which I think is quite dangerous.
a drug free society is a worthwhile goal of any institution,
when the initial entry into this program, i.e. the Purification
Rundown, is filled with so many false generalizations, internal
inconsistencies, outright lies, and potentially dangerous treatments,
I think it is without question that Narconon will be a detriment
to the Newkirk area, Kay County, and the State of Oklahoma as
I have limited my criticism to the Purification Rundown program
of Narconon, I have also reviewed documentation of Narconon's
association with A.B.L.E. and to the Church of Scientology.
In general, it appears to me that the overall program being
advocated by Narconon is nothing more than a poorly disguised
program for obtain recruits into the Church of Scientology to
begin their processing, programming, brain washing... while
at the same time obtaining federal and state funds as well as
private and public insurance monies to support their cause.
all these reasons I would strongly encourage much more intensive
investigation by those responsible for further licensing of
this proposed institution.
C. M. Palmer, M.D.
PEDIATRIC & ADOLESCENT
B. SVOBODA, M.D.
FRANCIS MEDICAL PARK PLAZA
1035 N. EMPORIA, SUITE 270
WICHITA, KANSAS 67214
TEL (315) 267-5215
121 North Main
P.O. Box 131
Newkirk, OKlahoma 74647-0131
- unrelated chatter>
begins by stating truth based generalizations to create an air
of scientific foundation.
deposition of many minerals and chemicals can be demonstrated,
but not for all substances.
need for seeking medical approval for participation also emphasizes
safety for these approaches could be fatal for a person with
a cardiovascular disorder or an electrolyte impalance.
the observations against diet and food fadism as unproven claims
is generally agreed upon.
(Hubbard) has established these accepted truths, he can more
easily make marginal statements that tend to be accepted as
probable truth, in line with his statements preceeding, although
the unknowning reader is usually not familiar with the statistics
(then) destroys his argument by stating that fat cells do not
exist. Anyone looking through a microscope can see the fat cells.
This statement speaks to hopes, not truths.
recommendations for various vitamins were compared to the recommendations
of the Food and Nutrition Board of the National Academy of Science
in reference to other nutritional fadists, i.e., the megavitamin
myth. This compares to Hubbard's listing:
| Vitamin A
| Vitamin C
| Vitamin D
||400 I. U.
| Vitamin E
of Vitamin A can cause brain swelling (pseudotumor cerebri)
with transient losses of vision.
does increase vascular circulation but in the acid form, it
has been linked to high bilirubin (jaundice) and livir damage.
It has been linked to psychiatry in that it cured pellegra psychoses,
a niacin deficiency. However illness may be based on both excesses
and deficiencies. A person can die of dehydration (lack of water)
or can drown (an excess of water). The appropriate use of niacin
is in deficiency states. Excessive use can be toxic to the liver.
American Academy of Pediatrics has issued a series of position
statements over the past decade speaking against the use of
megavitamin and trace element therapies for various childhood
behavioral and mental aspects, with strong emphasis on adversive
reactions to excesses. These statements would apply to Hubbard's
claims. The Niacin Theory is just that... a theory without any
basis for the concept of "turning on and turning off."
of various minerals can cause GI problems and, of more concern,
can cause kidney problems including kidney stones.
Hubbard's theories are ...theories without controlled proof.
He flings facts around wildly in excess, i.e., to drown the
reader in facts in order to convince him that he knows. But
he has little to reference and document the facts. A review
of Hubbard's communications is that these directives are only
theoretical observations without substantiating facts or details
and with no references for the reader to "check the source
are many current so-called experts on "ecologic-metabolic"
profiles in diagnosis and treatment of various disorders, both
mental and physical, with many theories on the loose. Of the
multiple claims published in fadist journals, few are substantiated
by controlled studies and most are based on anecdotes and theories.
"fat and oil" claims are but one of these and indeed
resembles some of the other claims....(none of which) have proven
to be the promised cure when subjected to controlled trials.
Of even more interest is that these usually claim to be safe
when nearly every effective therapy has risks.
- unrelated comment>
/s/ William B. Svoboda M.D.
OF CALIFORNIA, LOS ANGELES
OF PSYCHIATRY AND
USLA SCHOOL OF MEDICINE
760 WESTWOOD PLAZA
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA 90024
Commissioner of Health
Oklahoma State Health Department
1000 N.E. 10th Street, Room 305
Oklahoma City, OK 73152
am a professor of psychiatry at the University of California
in Los Angeles. From my curriculum vitae (copy enclosed) you
can see that I was at the University of Oklahoma School of Medicine
for 15 years. I have returned often to lecture, and still feel
very close to Oklahoma and my many friends there.
of my fields of interest is cults (see list of publications).
Through that interest, I have learned that one such organization,
the "Church" of Scientology, is attempting to get
a permanent license for a facility of Narconon (a creature of
Scientology) on Indian School Land in Chilocco, Oklahoma.
hope I can convince you that such licensure would be a terrible
mistake, exposing naive Indian children to Scientology's "dianetic
auditing" (similer ot hypnosis) and giving Scientology
an undeserved claim to respectability at Oklahoma's moral expense.
fact, the Scientologists are already proceeding along these
lines (see enclosed Narconon "Expansion News Hotline").
While you are not a member of the Mental Health Board that will
be ruling on it, they will surely consider your views, as I
hope they will mine.
my judgement, Scientology is an insidious and dangerous cult.
Its founder, L. Ron Hubbard, was a science-fiction writer whose
career as a mental healer was founded on extravagant lies and
am sending you a few articles on cults to give you a general
idea of what they are. Also enclosed are two Reader's Digest
articles about Scientology and its dangers. For more information
about Hubbard and his cult I refer you to a couple of recent
books: 'L. Ron Hubbard, Messiah or Madman' by Bent Corydon and
L. Ron Hubbard, Jr., and 'Barefaced Messiah' by Russell Miller.
you wish for more information, please do not hesitate to call
this office at (213) 825-0085.
every good wish,
Jolyon West, M.D.
Professor of Psychiatry
P. GARTIN, D.D.S.
NORTH HILL - P.O. BOX 833
HOBART, OKLAHOMA 73651
January 6, 1991
To Members Of The
Oklahoma Mental Health Board)
am writing this letter in order to persuade you not to aid Narconon
or Scientology by granting them a license to administer their
drug rehabilitation program in the state of Oklahoma.
request is based upon 2-1/2 years of study and practice in Scientology
as a Scientologist. After 2-1/2 years of study, hard work and
$60,000.00, I was fortunate to be shown the truth about this
organization and it's founder L. Ron Hubbard. It is a destructive
mind control cult masquerading as a religion and it is nothing
more than a cruel international con.
is highly unlikely that the people administering the Narconon
program have any formal training in physiology, pharmacology,
or medicine. The founder of the "Purification Rundown"
had no such background.
is a front group for Scientology. Narconon headquarters are
at Scientology International Headquarters in Los Angeles, California.
not be fooled into aiding the expansion of this psychotic group.
excellent resources which address the topics of Cults and Scientology
"Combatting Cult Mind Control:, by Steve Hassan
"Bare-faced Messiah", by Russell Miller
P. Gartin, D.D.S.
AGAINST HEALTH FRAUD
of the Board
Oklahoma State Department of Mental Health
Oklahoma City, OK
National Council Against Health Fraud has learned that you will
soon consider whether or not to certify a Narconon addiction
treatment program in your area. NCAHF is concerned about the
proliferation of unproven regimens being promoted for substance
abuse. It is in the process of establishing a special task force
that will investigate misinformation, fraud and quackery in
the meantime, sufficient information is available on the nature
of some programs to cause NCAHF to warn the public and officials
of their dubious value. Among these is the Narconon program
of the Scientology sect.
advances the so-called "purification rundown" an alleged
detoxification regimen invented by Scientology's founder, the
late L. Ron Hubbard (Hubbard has been the subject of several
critical books: 'The Bare-faced Messiah,' 'L Ron Hubbard: Messiah
or Madman?', 'A Piece of Blue Sky', 'Religion, Inc.'; each of
these present Hubbard as a psychopath and Scientology as a dangerous
regimen consists of megadoses of niacin, the avoidance of certain
foods, exercise and saunas to purge and sweat out body toxins.
The program is not based upon rational science but appears to
be a product of Hubbard's imagination.
to an FDA 'Talk Paper' dated October 15, 1990:
sweating may reduce water and salt, it is not generally accepted
as a method to reduce toxins. Niacin is sometimes prescribed
by physicians... to reduce cholesterol, but it is not without
toxic side effects on the liver ... and FDA recommends that
such a regimen should not be taken up for other purposes without
Board member James Kenney, Ph.D., R.D. points out that there
is no evidence that niacin mobilizes toxic chemicals from fat
cells (book review in press).
believes that responsible community leaders should reject the
Narconon addiction treatment program. It appears to be among
the least acceptable in a field that already suffers from a
lack of sound objective research.
E. GEARY, D.D.S., INC.
AND RESTORATIVE DENTISTRY
531 East Smith Road
Medina, Ohio 44256
Mental Health Board
Oklahoma City, OK 73125
understand that you are considering licensing Narconon as a
drug treatment facility in your State. As a health care practitioner
that has participated in their so-called Purification Rundown,
which is the basis for Narconon's treatment program, I would
say it is bunk.
high levels of Niacon given produce flushing and discomfort
which by the power of suggestion is alluded to be a sign of
toxins from past drugs, medications, radiation, etc. leaving
your body. Mr. Hubbard has no credentials that support his having
any expertise in this area.
my wife's Purification Program, she began having difficulty
sleeping, having hallucinations and other bizarre symptoms which
the Scientologists told her were normal. She eventually required
hospitalization, due to their ineptitude. I consider their treatment
to be unscientific and dangerous.
of successes are due to hypnotic suggestions. Of course, the
Scientologists vehemently deny they do this. We have found credible
evidence from persons well respected in the mental health community
to the contrary. Please deny this grou any authenticity.
Robert E. Geary, D.D.S.
Past Member 648
Mental Health Board of Medina County
of the book...
For a Poisoned Planet
(Harmony Books, $21.95)
Times Staff Reporter
Steinman's notoriety arrived in Seattle long before he did.
he even embared on a nationwide tour to promote his new book,
"Diet For a Poisoned Planet." (Harmony Books, $21.95),
rebuttals were landing on book-reviewer's desks.
calls his book a consumers guide to pesticides in foods. Medical
experts chose other words.
said former U.S. Surgeon General C. Everett Koop in a statement
terrorist nonsense" declared Dr. Victor Herbert, professor
of medicine and Mount Sinai and Bronx Veterans Affairs Medical
ranging from the American Cancer Society to the American Dietetic
Association have banded together in denouncing the book with
a perhaps unprecedented media assault.
all the worry about a little-known Los Angeles journalist and
is writing about pesticides. And his work is salt in the financial
wounds of a national food and regulatory industry still smarting
from the impact of last year's Alar scare.
began studying the effects of toxins in 1985, after research
for a story revealed his own blood contained the chemicals DDT
asserts cancer deaths are on the rise in the United States and
that chemicals in the food chain are partly responsible. "Just
eating the foods and drinking the water of late Twentieth-Century
America can kill you," he states in the book's introduction.
Chapter 18 of Steinman's book is little more than an advertisment
for Scientology's "Purification Rundown" as delivered
by HealthMed in Los Angeles, and Narconon at Chilocco, Oklahoma
and other locations.
following are former U.S. Surgeon General C.Everett Koop's responses
to questions on this book in general, and on the Purification
Rundown it promotes:
Have you heard about a new book called "Diet For a Poisoned
Planet," which claims that nearly 100 foods are unsafe
to eat because they contain dangerous levels of pesticides?
"Yes, I read that book. I was amazed any publisher would
publish such trash. And that's the best word I can think of.
There is really nothing scientific about it. It is a hodge podge
of misinformation added to selective bits of old information
to prove a thesis that's unprovable. The premise of the entire
book is flawed..."
What about the author's detoxification advice? He credits L.
Ron Hubbard, the founder of Scientology with some of the theories
"My recommendation about detoxification is to keep away
from it. You don't need it. I'm not sure it does what this book
describes. It's dangerous. I don't think L. Ron Hubbard has
credibility in the scientific world. The author's suggestions
about detoxification can be detrimental to your health. "
Everett Koop, M.D.
AGAINST HEALTH FRAUD
19th Street #8
Santa Monica, CA 90404
555 East 71st Street
have been asked) to comment on the "Purification rundown"
used by Narconon and other Scientologist run "clinics"
(e.g. HealthMed and New Life Center).
a member of the board of directors of The National Council Against
Health Fraud and a diplomat of The American Board of Nutrition,
I am an expert at separating fact from fraud in the nutrition
field. I am familiar with the "Hubbard Method" of
"detoxification" which is used at Scientologist run
"clinics" and is described in L. Ron Hubbard's book,
"Clear Mind, Clear Body", and in David Steinman's
book, "Diet For a Poisoned Planet", which I recently
reviewed (Current Diet Review, Nov. - Dec. 1990).
"purification" program was created by L. Ron Hubbard's
fertile imagination in the mid 1950's. It is part of the teachings
of the Church of Scientology and lacks any credible scientific
"purification" or "detoxification" program
is claimed to help "clear" the mind of toxins such
as drugs, pesticides and chemical pollutants. It consists of
large doses of niacin, vegetable oil, exercise and "low
to the followers of L. Ron Hubbard, the large doses of niacin
works by stimulating the release of fat into the blood stream
and this is accompanied by various "toxins" trapped
in the body's fatty tissues.
to science, large doses of niacin actually block the release
of fat from fat cells. This has been observed both at rest (Acta
Medica Scandinavia 1962, 172(suppl):641) and during exercise
(D. Jenkins, Lancet 1965, 1307). In other words, the scientific
evidence shows the exact opposite of what Hubard's theory predicts.
There is no credible support for claims that large doses of
niacin clear toxins from the brain, fatty tissue or any other
part of the body.
make matters worse, large doses of niacin are hepatotoxic and
can cause serious liver damage. It may also trigger gout, raise
blood sugar into the diabetic range, cause itching, flushing
and a rash. Nausea and gastritis are other side effects of large
doses of niacin. To subject people to these potentially serious
side effects on the pretense that they are being "detoxified",
"cleared" or "purified" is quackery.
professionals who subject troubled people (many with psychiatric
illnesses and / or severe emotional problems) to this unproven
detoxification program are at best unethical and at worst guilty
of health fraud. Since the Hubbard Method is clearly a religious
ritual and is not a scientifically based procedure, it seems
inappropriate for the State of Oklahoam to be involved in the
licensing of an institution using this ritual. It would also
be very inappropriate for any public funds to be used to pay
for a religious ritual which is potentially harmful and of no
hope these comments are helpful to you an assessing the true
value of the "Hubbard Method" for detoxification.
James J. Kenney, Ph. D., R.D.
Dr. John Chelf was appointed by the Oklahoma State Mental Health
Board to evaluate the Purification Rundown as delivered by Narconon.
OF THE PURIFICATION RUNDOWN
analysis will only cover some of the statements Hubbard puts
forward concerning certain aspects of biochemistry and medicine.
Many of his other statements I consider fallacious or even mendacious,
but they will not be subjected to criticism here.
makes many statements concerning this drug, all of which serve
to illustrate his overwhelming ignorance of biochemistry.
it has been stated that it only takes one millionth of an
ounce of L.S.D. to produce a drugged condition and because
it is basically wheat rust which simply cuts off circulation,
my original thinking on this over the years was that L.S.D.
sticks around in the body. That basically is the idea underlying
the original Sweat Program. The remedy given was to sweat
it out. From the most recent research developments, it now
appears that not only L.S.D. but other chemical poisons and
toxins, preservatives, pesticides, etc., as well as medical
drugs and the long list of heavy street drugs... can lodge
in the tissues and remain in the body for years."
L.S.D. is a chemical. It is thought to act by a direct effect
on brain cells, perhaps by blocking the action of a neurotransmitter
(a chemical messenger in the brain) known as Serotonin. this
blockade may affect the brain adversely, causing the various
hallucinogenic effects of the drug.
claims that L.S.D. "cuts off circulation". In fact,
it does nothing of the sort; neither the output of blood from
the heart nor its passage through any of the blood vessels in
the body is affected. L.S.D. affects only t he brain, not the
rust is a virus which causes an infection of wheat. it has absolutely
nothing in common with L.S.D. either chemically or biologically.
How Hubbard ever made the connection between the two is very
puzzling; the fact that the two are linked together at all is
evidence of his poor understanding of the subject.
is no evidence at all that L.S.D. or any of the other street
drugs Hubbard mentions "lodge in the tissues for years".
Indeed, these drugs, being water soluable, are excredted quickly.
This is due to the fact that the body is mainly water. The drugs
dissolve in the water and then are rapidly excreted from the
body in the urine. (In view of this, Hubbard's claim that "trips
during the program" (p.15) should be treated with "extra
vitamin B Complex and vitamin C" is seen to be false; you
can't treat what isn't there.)
Fats and Oils
only substances which Hubbard lists correctly as being stored
in the tissues are pesticides. However, Hubbard has no idea
how this occurs. He states:
is no such thing as a fat cell" (p.8)
is incorrect. Hubbard might have merely consulted a basic medical
text to realize this. The human body, like any complex living
organism, is composed of cells. In the body, these cells are
specialized for various functions; nerve cells, which relay
messages to and from the brain; red blood cells, which carry
oxygen to the body; and so on. The body stores fat in specialized
fat cells. Hubbard, although claiming a good deal of knowledge
of biology, does not even appreciate this very basic concept.
then claims that to "clean up" fat tissue in the body,
it is necessary to replace the fat broken down by exercise with
an external source of oil. He is wrong on several counts.
the body contains none of the street drugs stored in body tissues
as Hubbard claims. The only exception to this is the active
ingredient of marijuana; it may be stored in fat cells for as
long as one to two months before it is finally excreted. It
is not, as Hubbard claims, stored for years. L.S.D. crystls
do not exist at all in the body. Thus the "drug residues"
which Hubbard bases most of his program on, simply do not
in order to rid the body of these drugs and toxins, Hubbard
proposes to break down body fat. In the short term, this would
actually increase the toxicity of such substnces as pesticides
because they would be released into the bloodstream as fat is
broken down. The only instance of this occurring is in several
species of birds exposed to DDT during the summer. In the winter,
as the birds used up their body fat due to the lack of food,
many died due to DDT poisoning. Fortunately, the levels of such
substances are not high enough in the human population to cause
such an effect; nonetheless, Hubbard's method of "cleansing"
is certainly not medically sound.
Hubbard states that oil should be consumed to provide more fat
to replace that which is broken down. In fact, oil is not necessary
to make fat; the body may synthesize fat perfectly naturally
from carbohydrates instead, as is evidenced by the number of
obese candy lovers.l
complete lack of medical knowledge is best demonstrated here.
introductory comments first. Hubbard states that alcohol "burns
up" vitamin B1 and thus leads to the DTs. This is incorrect.
Alcohol itself causes, in sufficient dose and following
withdrawal, a clinical syndrom known as delerium tremens
or the DTs. This syndrome is due to a sudden lack of alcohol
in an addict of this drug; it is best characterized as a severe
alcohol withdrawal reaction.
alcoholics eat poorly and thus become deficient in thiamine
or vitamin B1. They do not burn up this vitamin, they simply
run out of it. They develop a neurologic syndrome known as Wernicke-Korsakoff
disease which will not be discussed here but which is much different
from the DTs.
this, Hubbard claims that L.S.D. and other street drugs burn
up several vitamins. There is no evidence that this occurs.
No vitamin deficiencies are due to a toxic effect of street
drugs; what actually occurs is that many addicts eat very poorly
and thus fail to consume the proper amount of vitamins. Deficiencies
of these vitamins then develop, not due to the drugs themselves,
but rather to the social situations which they create. The solution
obviously lies in a discontinuation of the drug taking behaviour
and resumption of a proper diet.
devotes special attention to this vitamin and makes many statements
concerning it, almost all of which are incorrect.
first claims it "releases L.S.D. crystals into the system".
As discussed earlier, there are no L.S.D. crystals stored at
all in the body anyway so this statement concerning this effect
of niacin is incorrect.
he states that, "Niacin's biochemical reaction is my own
private, personal discovery". In fact, niacin was discovered
about the turn of the century and its lack, which leads to a
syndrome known as pellegra, was elucidated in the early 1900's.
Niacin's action, as an important constituent in many of the
body's chemical reactions, has been studied since that time
by several notable biochemists; Hubbard is not among them. He
has made no contribution to the field, has published no work
pertaining to the substance and his claim that niacin is a "private
personal discovery" is a total lie.
given as a medication, Niacin may cause a direct effect on blood
vessels of the skin causing them to dilate. This will be seen
clinically as in itching, flushing sensation which passes quickly.
Hubbard claims however that it is really "running out"
sunburn or radiation. This is simply ridiculous; radiation,
be it sunlight or otherwise, is not stored in the body as a
chemical substance is, but is simply converted to some other
sort of energy such as heat, or causes some tissue damage (i.e.
sunburn). (Try catching a glass of sunlight!) It cannot therefore
be "run out."
in the body is converted to a substance known as nicotinamide
(tradename Niacinamide). Hubbard claims that this compound is
worthless. He is incorrect again; in fact, nicotinamide given
as a drug simply obviates the body's need to convert niacin
to nicotinamide, and avoids the side effects of niacin.
is of historical note that no one received a Nobel prize in
1973 for "curing insanity with niacin", as Hubbard
Medical Risks of the Program
attempts to cover himself as concerns the risks of the program
by stating that:
program can be strenuous and should not be undertaken by anyone
who has a weak heart or who is anemic."
methods of clinical investigation, however, are highly questionable
both medically and legally. He states that the "Medical
Officer" who is "trained" may test applicants
to the program for these problems. Many years of training are
required to detect heart disease in some individuals. The medical
officers in the various orgs have no such training; Hubbard,
by implying that they do, is perpetrating a medical fraud which
may be highly dangerous to some people engaging in this program.
For example, a patient with unsuspected coronary artery disease
who is subjected to the stresses demanded of him in this combination
of exercise and sauna stands a significant chance of suffering
a heart attack.
should be further noted that Hubbard gives as second choice
a qualified medical doctor to check the applicant before embarking
on the program; an M.D. is to be consulted only in the absence
of a "medical officer".
also states that the dose of niacin, which is give initially
at 100 mg a day, should be steadily icnreased. He then states:
other vitamins would have to be increased proportionately
to Niacin at the same time the Niacin is increased..."
may be dangerous to the person concerned. Probably most of the
vitamins Hubbard recommends are harmless, even if they do none
of the things he claims they do. However, vitamins A and D,
if taken in large doses, may be quite harmful.
levels of vitamin D may lead to a sudden increase in blood calcium.
This will lead to symptoms of decreased appetite, nausea and
vomiting, memory loss, decreased level of conciousness progressing
to coma, and in infants, mental retardation. Kidney damage may
also occur which is often not reversible on discontinuing the
vitamin. Bone disease, with weakening and fractures, also occurs
amount s of vitamin A may lead to severe toxicity including
a rise in the pressure of the fluid surrounding the brain, leading
to headaches, visual disturbances and seizures. Even more worrisome
is the fact that in animals, vitmin A leads to malformed offspring
when fed to the pregnant mother.
Hubbard seems to feel that any drugs are dangerous, as he lumps
them with street drugs and other poisons in his introductory
section. Many people depend on certain drugs to maintain the
function of their heart or other vital organs. In the case of
these people, an instruction or even suggestion to cease taking
their medications could be fatal.
summary, Hubbard is a very ignorant man. He consistently demonstrates
a complete and at times dangerous lack of knowledge concerning
biochemistry, physics, and medicine. His theories are based
on fallacies and lies; there is no scientific data to support
any of them.
his program not only fails to deliver what it promises, but
may actually be detrimental to the health of those taking it.
such, it cannot be recommended that anyone take this program.
David Hogg, M.D.
Toronto, October 8, 1981