My Malignant Melanoma

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Sunday, 2 August 2009


Quack Quack

Another couple of well-known faces appear over on the What Now Board. Matthew Manning the psychic healer, and Rosie Daniel, the doctor who turned into a promoter of quack diets and ayurvedic medicine.

Unfortunately the well-meaning posters who challenged the worth of these two have pulled their punches, and mixed unchallenged quack propaganda in with their attempts to debunk. Let me help out.

Matthew Manning is either a fraud or he is delusional, like all "healers". Faith healing is a fraud. Nothing more needs to be said.

Rosy Daniel's mission seemed for a long time mainly to be to blur the line between medicine and quackery, as she did so well during her time at the Bristol Cancer Centre, the acceptable face of complementary medicine, now called the Penny Brohn Centre.

To the extent that it differs from the FSA's recommendations, the Bristol Diet is completely worthless from a medical point of view. It is tolerated by medical professionals as a means to allow cancer patients to feel they have some control of their future.

Unfortunately this tolerance allows more hard-line quacks to promote harmful diets on the back of seeming medical acceptance of some of the principles of the Bristol Diet which have no scientific backing. These are:

That organic food is better for cancer patients than non-organic in some way.

That low sugar diets help prevent cancer returning

That low salt diets help prevent cancer returning

That low dairy diets help prevent cancer returning

That low meat diets help prevent cancer returning

That low caffeine diets help prevent cancer returning

All of these are unsupported by any evidence.

But Rosy has left that line-blurring behind her now, openly promoting quackery like Carctol, alkaline diet, and so on, and charging cancer patients £150 per hour for this worse-than-useless advice according to the poster on What Now.

The attempts to rebut Rosie on What Now accept quite a few things from quack propaganda, whether in an attempt to compromise, or through misinformation I do not know. These are:

Green Tea might help cancer patients-early promise in the lab, but no beneficial effect in the real world and can block the effect of some chemo agents

Dairy free diet might help cancer patients-Not only is this not proven, dairy may actually protect against some cancers

Honey helps cancer patients-nope, not even the magic kind that costs £45 a jar

Drug trials which will not lead to a patentable product are not carried out-not true-DCA, Vitamin A, Vitamin D, Beta Carotene, Vitamin E, etc. have all been given clinical trials against cancer despite being non-patentable

Complementary techniques lessen side-effects-untrue-if "complementary medicine" reduced side-effects, it would be real medicine. There would be a measurable effect-but no such effect has been demonstrated.

Let's not even concede these seemingly innocuous delusions to the quacks. Give them an inch, and they take a mile...

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