Article #4: Must I Be Immunized? by Virginia Vetrano, B.S., D.C.
Worried people call the Health School asking if they should have themselves immunized before traveling abroad. They are going to the Far East or Mexico, and should they beware of fresh fruits and vegetables? Is it true that they must drink wine or beer, and shun pure water?
These and other questions come to their mind when preparing for a visit to other countries. They have heard so many scare stories written by the masters of the scare science that they take a trip with great fear and trepidation. Indeed, some remain home for, fear of "catching" some foreign "bug."
On January 4, 1971, the Arkansas Gazette carried an article by Dr. Van Dellen alarming the people that a cholera epidemic was spreading through the Middle and Far East, into Africa. "For the first time in 100 years the disease has bridged the Sahara and is in tropical Africa and as far west as Guinea. These areas are densely populated and have poor sanitation—ideal conditions for the spread of the infection. The mortality also has been high.
He goes on to say that the cholera poses "no immediate threat to the United States," but he says this "with his fingers crossed, because any person visiting afflicted countries could bring it back." Then those stow-away germs could pounce on us poor unsuspecting Americans who would then succumb to the disease.
Where was the cholera vibrio all these years? Did it disappear and suddenly return? Travelers are advised to consult the United States Public Health Service to determine which countries demand that they be immunized for cholera before entering, making it sound as if many countries demand immunization for this disease before crossing their frontiers. This is not so. Dr. Van Dellen states in the aforementioned article that, "Many countries in Europe, Asia, and Africa demand evidence of vaccination before a person crosses their frontiers. And this is true particularly after the person has been in a cholera-infected area."
I telephoned the United States Public Health Service and was told that it is not necessary to be immunized before going into an infected area; that the countries did not care if you were subjected to the disease when there. It is the other countries that worried when you re-entered them on your way home. I was advised that before making a world trip that one should be immunized for smallpox, cholera, yellow fever, tetanus, typhoid, polio, and hepatitis. Then one month before entering a malaria-infested area I was told to start taking medication and continue taking it as long as there was a chance of being bitten by the malaria-carrying mosquito.
The World Health Organization, Geneva, is the responsible body for the International Sanitary Regulations. It is clear in Article 83, for all those countries that accept the International Sanitary Regulations, that "objectors to vaccination can refuse the operations without being refused admission into those countries which have accepted the International Sanitary Regulations."
If you have traveled into Asia, Africa, America, other than from the United States and Canada, and wish to enter the United Kingdom, an official vaccination certificate is necessary. In almost all countries, however, you can get in without shots of any kind. It is when you re-enter other countries from an infected area that trouble may be given you. Paul-Emile Chevrefils, M.D., founder president of La Ligue Pour Le Vaccine Libre states that he travels without the yellow certificate, using only Article 83. He states that, "This international by-law gives anyone the right to go around the world by using the medical surveillance for 15 days, not to be isolated but to go freely."
After informing his readers that "there is no good evidence that cholera immunizations are any good ..." Fredrick J. Stare, M.D. (Arkansas Gazette, November 16, 1970) urges us to be shot anyway, and then gives us a formula for eating that will supposedly prevent cholera. Do what he says and you probably will develop cholera. Do the exact opposite of his advice which follows and you will probably have more energy, enjoy yourself more and not be troubled whatsoever with "vacation diarrhea."
Stare, according to the dictates of the infection myth, gives us this advice: Stick to bottled mineral water, hot tea or coffee, or bottled beer, eat the meat, potatoes, rice, or other well-cooked foods, canned vegetables, bread, butter, and jam; and shun the fruits and vegetables unless you can readily peel them yourself. Wash your hands well before you eat."
This nonsensical plan of eating supposedly prevents the development of cholera by killing the vibrio with heat or chemical processes before introducing it into the body via food and water. Were the vibrio the cause of cholera his reasoning would still be specious. Vibrio cholerae are aerobic bacteria, meaning that air is necessary for their growth. There is not an excess of air in the gastrointestinal system. They are also killed by acidity. If food and water, contaminated by vibrio cholera are taken, the acid of any good stomach will soon destroy them. Kendall A. Elson, M.D. states in Cyclopedia of Medicine, that, "The cholera vibrio escapes from the body of the infected individual in stools and vomitus, although if the latter is strongly acid the organisms are immediately killed."
What people should be taught is cleanliness, and to eat moderately of properly-combined foods so that digestion is normal and they need not fear the cholera vibrio, if they still believe the concept of disease of the shaman. We must caution our readers against Stare's Middle Ages advice. The cholera vibrio does not cause cholera.
Even though he has twice made the statement that cholera immunizations do not protect one from cholera, Stare advises getting immunized anyway to avoid trouble at ports of entry to other countries which have strict public health regulations. He condemns his peers, who are M.D.s who give the shots when he says, "It is important to have this certificate in order to avoid inconveniences in travel or the threat of serum hepatitis from a dirty vaccinating needle."
To back up his statements about cholera vaccine, Stare quotes Dr. W. B. Greenough, III, whom he says "knows far more about cholera than I know or ever will know," as having written him the following: "Many commercial vaccines do not protect even in populations from endemic areas (where cholera is always present) ... as a measure for disease control immunization is ineffective since the carrier state is not interfered with by the vaccine."
What he is saying in plain English is that if the cholera vaccine protected, then cholera would not be endemic, and those who were protected would not develop the disease even if supposed "carriers" are present. However, we are taught that the "organisms usually disappear from the stools of the cholera patient within five to seven days of the onset of infection. ..." and the carrier state is not supposed to be a significant method of transmission of the disease. Cecil and Loeb's textbook of medicine states "there are no known instances of chronic carriers among human beings."
Many Hygienists have traveled to the Middle and Far East and into Africa, eating plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, without developing any trouble, whereas often those who had all the shots and who drank wine instead of water and who didn't dare taste a fresh fruit or vegetable came down with various illnesses, including cholera. I might add, that for the sake of cleanliness, pure distilled water would be best to drink, here or overseas, and for absolute cleanliness of vegetables and fruits, rinse them well in distilled water. The cholera vibrio is easily killed by drying, and it dies rapidly in pure water. It is cleanliness that is necessary, not sterility.
Cholera, an acute inflammation of the intestinal canal, is supposedly spread by food and water contaminated with vibrio cholerae. It is usually a disease endemic and epidemic in Asia primarily along the Ganges River in India and Pakistan. The bacillus, which is shaped like a comma, and was called the comma bacillus by Koch, its discoverer, releases a powerful endotoxin after death, which contains a mucinase. Mucinase is thought to be responsible for the extreme cellular desquamation of the mucosal epithelium that is so characteristic a feature of cholera. The endotoxin supposedly causes such intense dilatation of all the capillaries along the whole intestinal tract that the fluid leaks out of these into the intestines, thus producing the rice-water stools so typical of Asiatic cholera. Because of the loss of such huge quantities of electrolytes and water, extreme dehydration ensues, and Boyd states that 75% of the untreated patients die.
Since the vibrio cholera does such horrible things to a person, by all means, shouldn't we take steps to prevent infection? These threats could scare one into being immunized despite the poor reports of immunization, before going to the Middle and Far East. Who wants to dehydrate and die? So we become immunized and avoid all fresh foods, hoping that we won't develop the disease.
Germs by themselves do not cause disease. Dr. Pettenkofer, Professor of Bacteriology at the University of Vienna, astounded all his students one day by drinking a glass of water containing millions of living cholera bacilli. He had come to the conclusion that germs do not cause disease, and wanted to prove it. As he gulped down a glassful of living vibrio, the bearded Dr. Pettenkofer only growled, "Now let us see if I get cholera." De Kruif said that Dr. Pettenkofer drank enough of the "wiggling comma germs to infect a regiment." Nothing happened to the "mad" Pettenkofer. Many incidents could be cited showing that infecting the body with germs does not cause any specific disease to develop. Perhaps this is why the president was persuaded to dump stockpiles of germs for germ warfare. Perhaps experiments proved them useless and physicians didn't want the lucrative germ theory destroyed just yet. If germ warfare were effective, it is hardly likely that he would have disposed of the stockpile.
As far back 1928, Dr. M. Beddow Dayly, M.R.C.S., L.R.C.P., Medical World, said: "I am prepared to maintain, with scientifically established facts, that in no single instance has it been conclusively proved that any microorganism is the specific cause of a disease."
In Volume VI of the Hygienic System, Dr. Shelton says: "In more than sixty years of intensive farming the germ idea, there is not one 'disease' that has been proved to be of germ origin, and not one can be cured according to the germ theory. Unless a germ will cause a disease every time it infects the body, it is not a cause. A cause must be as constant and specific in its influence, or it is not a cause. Germs are omnipresent—this is one of the fundamental truths Pasteur or his contemporary, Bechamp, discovered; but he and his followers appear to have overlooked the fact that germs fail to have a specific influence all the time."
Dr. Shelton further says: "The view I would put before the reader is that 'disease' is not caused by the germ, but by the state of the body that allows the germ to flourish. And this condition of the organism or any part of it which renders possible the growth of the germ therein is the much sought for 'filterable virus.' It is the outgrowth of violations of the laws of life and is no chance or haphazard condition."
Dr. Tilden says that germs are merely adventitious—secondary. If the soil is proper for the growth of bacteria, they will flourish but if tissues and secretions are normal and healthy, pathological germs will not grow and multiply.
Those who travel and drink alcoholic beverages, smoke, keep late hours, overeat on spicy, cooked dishes, and sight-see until they are about to drop are enervating themselves. They are using up nerve energy in excess. Functions begin to lag. Metabolic waste products mount in the tissues and fluids of the body. Secretion and excretion are impaired. This is the ground work, or the foundation for the development of any disease. Even then, many times the specific bacteria fail to appear. And in numerous other cases the bacteria fail to appear until very late in the stage of the disease. If a cause is a cause, logically it should be present in sufficient numbers before symptoms appear. It cannot be demonstrated that bacteria invariably appear even after the development of a particular disease.
What is the real reason for Fredrick Stare's change in feeling about vaccinations for cholera? Probably, he was given a good lecture by the AMA. Thousands of dollars will be lost to the American medical profession if people do not get their immunizations before they leave home. So he castigated his brethren physicians in other countries by telling his public that it is important to avoid the dirty needles in other countries. It would have been better to tell them the truth, that they could rely on Article 83 of the World Health Organization and go freely in other countries, as long as they let the health officials know of their whereabouts. This way a painful shot could be avoided as well as the occasional development of hepatitis from dirty needles in this country.
Why the recent outburst of cholera? An item under World Health News, in the September 1971, Health For All (England), has a very good answer to this question. It states: "Whenever there is a great social upheaval, with its tragic displacement of people and the consequent crowding of refugees, there is always a medical lesson to be learned. Disease often follows in the wake of such catastrophes, and, as with the most recent one, cholera becomes almost epidemic. According to medical opinion, the causative organism in this case is the spirillum cholerae which is found in the stools of patients. Entry into the body is through the alimentary tract, and the source of the infection is polluted water due to a lack of sanitation. To say that the organism is the cause of the disease is, however, to put the cart before the horse. The course of events runs in this order; First the breakdown of social order; then the panic of the population; and then the crowding of the people with the absence of sanitation, with the development of the organism as an associated factor. In this country, as history tells, cholera was widespread whenever people were crowded together and there was a lack of proper sanitation.
"It is interesting to notice that whenever there is a cholera outbreak, the headlines in the newspapers are given over the use of vaccines, to which, also, credit is generally afforded when the epidemic comes under control. The vaccines are rushed from the great pharmaceutical centres with the accompaniment of massive publicity with the result that probably 99 persons out of 100 would affirm the vaccines were effective in controlling the situation.
"It would therefore have come as a surprise to many people to have read on the front page of Medical News Tribune, June 11, 1971, the headline: 'Medical science helpless against cholera epidemic' and to have learned that 'medical science is virtually powerless in the face of the cholera epidemic on the India-Pakistan border. Tropical medicine experts can't even estimate how many could die. Better sanitation is the only answer, impossible in the present situation as millions of Pakistani refugees exist in terrible conditions, aggravated by the monsoon... .' "
Boyd's textbook of pathology states that, "The wise Chinese are the only Orientals who do not suffer from cholera; they use boiled water and cooked food, they drink tea and eat hot rice." We have had personal talks with Scott Nearing, who also said that cholera was virtually wiped out in China, but this is attributed to better sanitation and better diets for the Chinese and not due to the fact that everything they eat or drink is boiled or cooked. They have habits of moderation in all things and do not eat extensively of flesh foods.
It is a well-known fact that the Chinese have used human wastes for many centuries for fertilizer. They are still using this method of fertilization. It isn't the boiling or cooking of their foods that protects them; it is the fact that they have a better economy than many years ago, and their people are better fed than previously.
Recently, in Organic Gardening and Farming, an article entitled "Goodbye to the Flush Toilet" pictures the use of human wastes as very ecological and necessary. It demonstrates how unclean our system of purifying water is, and how "even the most modern of sewage plants don't do a perfect job of taking that one part of human excrement out of toilet water." This dirty water, even though sterile, is, sent back into the reservoirs for us to drink and wash vegetables in. It clearly shows that the disposal of body wastes is actually cleaner when done the old-fashioned way, by bacteria and filtration through soil. The article states that "clearly, the soil does a much better job of purification than any sewage plant."
The aforementioned article quotes from Dr. F. H. King's book, Farmers of Forty Centuries, and shows that all animal wastes are recycled by the Orientals. "Human wastes were almost the life-blood of Oriental agriculture, Dr. King found. Farmers made attractive screens near their fields so passersby would honor them by leaving behind some human fertilizer. All families saved their toilet wastes and sold them to farmers. Cities found their human wastes to be a net profit instead of a liability, as in the U.S. In 1908 Shanghai sold one Chinese contractor 78,000 tons of human waste for $31,000 in gold."
It just goes to show you that it is not the method of fertilization that harms people. If one fears the vibrio, it may help to know that cholera vibrio can survive in sewage for only 24 hours and if the sewage is well composted before using it as fertilizer, there will be no live vibrios to fear.
Cholera is nothing more than a very severe diarrhea commencing high in the intestinal tract. The fluids that are lost during the diarrhea are secreted by the intestinal membranes to rid the food tube of very poisonous and irritating substances, which are not the vibrios. Overeating and drinking with the consequent putrefaction of proteins, producing virulent poisons high up in the small intestine are the causes of the diarrhea. It is a disease of poisoning, and because it develops high in the digestive tube, many electrolytes and fluids are lost. This is the danger. But if no food is taken when a malaise is first felt, and the body is permitted to wash the intestines free of the poison, and fear is kept from the patient, and he is freely supplied water when he is thirsty and can retain it, there will be a recovery rate much greater than now.
Graham states in his book on cholera "that the primary and paramount cause (of cholera) is always the peculiar condition of the human system resulting from the violation of the laws of organic life. Its more immediate exciting causes, however, are various; such as atmospheric changes and conditions—quality and quantity of food—excesses of every kind; but more than all, perhaps the use of artificial stimulants, and especially of the narcotic and alcoholic kinds;—in short, anything and everything that reduces the vital powers of the nerves of organic life; and brings the alimentary canal and with it the whole system into a state of extreme, morbid irritability, leaving little power in the system to sustain high irritation, and to resist and throw off things that are noxious or disturbing to it.
"It may, however, with confidence be asserted, that all the causes which obtain, beyond the control of man, would seldom or never develop this disease without the occurrence of those causes which operate through his voluntary conduct."
Instead of indulging in beer and wine, and much coffee and cooked food while traveling, if you do the very opposite of this ancient and harmful advice you will be more likely to have a healthy vacation.
Home > Lesson 66 - Contagion, Epidemics
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