Acid could lower health care cost
Atomic Scientist says
Ascorbic Acid could drastically lower
the costs of health care, if a few grams of the vitamin daily were provided
to everyone, from children to elders, says a 99-year-old atomic scientist
who has tried it out for himself. The argument is sound. Effects of
the vitamin are many and overwhelmingly positive.
The Vitamin C Foundation, which first
published the open letter of Theodore P. Jorgensen, says that cardiovascular
death rates dropped drastically after vitamin C started to be used in
high doses by large numbers of people, especially after the publication
of Linus Pauling's popular book "Vitamin C and the Common Cold".
This seems to be one of the great insanities
of our health system. The official recommendation for daily vitamin
C consumption is on the order of 60 to 90 milligrams, while our need
by all indications far exceeds that quantity - perhaps by as much as
two orders of magnitude. Jorgensen, in his excellent letter, explains
why lack of adequate amounts of vitamin C in our diet may be the single
most important factor determining ill health.
A BRILLIANT IDEA FROM A MEMBER OF THE MANHATTAN
Article found on vitamincfoundation.org
"... a free supply of ascorbic acid
to every person would lower the cost of health care in a major way ..."
- Theodore Jorgensen
Theodore P. Jorgensen
4932 High Street
Lincoln, Nebraska, 68506
Dear Sir or Madam as the case may be,
The easiest thing for me to do is not
to write this letter. But if you continue to read it I think you will
understand why I have written it. This letter concerns vitally important
ideas, probably far more than you can imagine. The calendar tells me
that I am in my 99th year ( this is not a misprint ) and I must tell
you a few things about myself.
I am a retired physics professor, with
a Ph.D. from Harvard. I spent the war years working on the Atomic Bomb
at Los Alamos. On my return to teaching, I originated and directed an
atomic accelerator project at the University of Nebraska, which continues
to be financed to the present time by the Federal Government. I was
retired from the University in my 70th year. Since that time my mental
activities have been mainly involved with studying the swing of a golf
club which allowed me to write a best seller on the Physics of Golf.
I grew up on a subsistence homestead
in northwestern South Dakota. The many grasshoppers on the prairie gave
my mother the idea that these were prime turkey food. She could get
fertile turkey eggs only when her turkeys were fed cod-liver oil. She
fed it to her turkeys and also to her five children. Thus at the age
of about thirteen years I became interested in nutrition.
Vitamin C was discovered to be ascorbic
acid in 1931. Soon chemistry had developed to the stage where this substance
could be synthesized. When a supply of pure ascorbic acid could be obtained,
this substance was used in medical research. Unfortunately the substance
was thought to be a vitamin and since it was known that vitamins were
effective in very small amounts, for many years research using ascorbic
acid was done using very small amounts of the substance. It took many
years before it was discovered that ascorbic acid could be used to produce
fabulous results when used correctly in medical and clinical research.
It was discovered that vitamin C was
not a poisonous substance when used in the human body. It was also discovered
that solutions of ascorbic acid in proper concentrations would kill
bacteria and viruses. Happily a patient's blood could, through the proper
use of ascorbic acid, be made able to kill them too. The concentration
needed in a specific case had of course somehow to be decided.
It was also discovered that most animals
produced there own ascorbic acid and that human beings, apes, monkeys,
and guinea pigs, could not make any at all. The conclusion of the thinking
on this problem was that the animals which could not make ascorbic acid
had a genetic defect involving one enzyme which was lost millions of
years ago because ascorbic acid was so easy to be obtained in the food
It was early decided that the Recommended
Daily Allowance, the RDA, for a healthy human male would be arbitrarily
set at the 60 mg per day. The rate chosen for monkeys was substantially
larger than that for humans.
The amount of ascorbic acid needed for
a man to allow him to have optimum health is of course unknown. Some
idea of the amount he should have would be what his body would make
if he had this ability. This leads to the consideration of the rate
of ascorbic acid made by healthy animals. Such studies have been made
and the values range far above those of the current RDA for humans.
Another effect of ascorbic acid must
be mentioned. The level of cholesterol in a persons blood varies inversely
with the level of the ascorbic acid in the blood. When I learned of
this I decided to perform an experiment on myself. My cholesterol level
had been running at 240 units for several years. My doctor told me he
could give me a drug to lower the cholesterol level but he was afraid
of the damage that might be done by the drug. An experiment had been
reported that a person's cholesterol level depended on the amount of
white sugar ingested. With this information in mind, I decided to eliminate
sucrose in my diet as much as I could in our culture while I arbitrarily
set my intake of ascorbic acid at five gram per day. Much to my doctor's
surprise, my cholesterol level fell from 240 units down to 180 units.
I know of similar experiments with similar results. Also I have not
had a cold since I have been taking the larger amount of ascorbic acid.
When I learned that a solution of ascorbic
acid in a proper concentration would have properties for killing both
bacteria and viruses and that the concentration of ascorbic acid in
a person's blood could be adjusted to such a concentration by the amount
of ascorbic acid ingested, I was led to try to find examples of this
use of ascorbic acid in medical literature.
Dr. Robert F. Cathcart of Los Altos,
California has found a method of determining the amount of ascorbic
acid to be used in any given case. He found that the amount of ascorbic
acid to use was just less than the amount which would produce a laxative
effect in the patient. Dr. Cathcart reports that he has treated 9000
patients with many kinds of infections and not a single patient treated
with ascorbic acid has had to go to a hospital. There are other reports
by doctors who have had phenomenal similar effects in which they determined
the amount of ascorbic acid by trial.
It was also discovered that most animals
produce their own ascorbic acid and that human beings, apes, monkeys,
and guinea pigs could not make any at all. The conclusion of the thinking
on this problem was that those animals which could not make ascorbic
acid had a genetic defect involving one enzyme which was lost millions
of years ago because ascorbic acid was so easy to obtain in the foods
In order to obtain the amount of ascorbic
acid a human being should have, work was done to find what other animals
made for their own use. The result of this study put the value of ascorbic
acid at 2.3 to 10 grams per 154 pound man in good health.
It is virtually impossible for any person
to obtain this much ascorbic acid per day from ordinary or casual ways.
This also indicates that human beings are living with dangerously low
levels of ascorbic acid. The above information gives some idea of the
reason our cost of health care is so high and our average age of death
is so low. This problem is a national disgrace and should be attacked
on a national basis. There are two reasons why this should be done.
One reason is that a free supply of ascorbic
acid to every person would lower the cost of health care in a major
way. The other is that in this age of possible terrorist attacks with
chemical and biological agents (bacterial and viral) we are vulnerable
because we have not applied and extended the knowledge we do have to
the practice of medicine. Any practical approach to the ascorbic acid
problem would require the whole prestige and authority of the federal
I can only leave the solutions of these
problems of the public health and the implementation of corrections
to the younger generations. As you can see, I think we can and should
work toward a solution. Have I convinced you of this possibility too?
Theodore P. Jorgensen