Therapeutic Uses of Vitamins
From the discovery of vitamins in 1911 through the 1950s, nearly all doctors based their diagnoses of vitamin deficiencies on readily observable symptoms, such as the hemorrhaging caused by scurvy or the paralysis caused by beriberi. In this period, researchers laid the foundation for a new way of looking at both natural and synthetic vitamins as medicine or drugs.
In the mid-1940s, the medical doctors put the vitamin therapy into practice. They used large doses of synthetic vitamin E to treat patients with a variety of cardiovascular diseases. Around the same time, doctors began treating a variety of viral diseases, including polio, with some limited success using large doses of synthetic vitamin C. In 1952, doctors started treating schizophrenics with synthetic vitamins C and B3 with some positive results. This was the start of a new way of thinking about vitamins in the same way that we think about drugs today.
As we know, isolated chemically produced supplements such as drugs can work well to prevent or suppress symptoms, but we also know that drugs and vitamins made form synthetics also have toxic side effects. Because they are not “nature-made” or a natural whole-food matrix, the body does not recognize them as useful nutritional building blocks. Furthermore, because of their synthetic nature, the body views them as foreign substances, and as such launches an immune response against them. This immune response does not necessarily prevent the synthetic vitamin from alleviating symptoms and giving the impression that healing has occurred. In fact, the reverse is true: When the body is flooded with synthetic substances, it not only loses its receptivity to them, but it also must manage the stress caused by the immune response. This is why there is little success in using synthetic vitamins as part of a long-term treatment program.
The elimination of symptoms is rarely an indicator of health. It is common for people to experience recurrences in disease even after successfully addressing the symptoms. Why? Because the root cause of the disease or illness has gone untreated. Health is only possible when the deficiencies that caused the symptoms, and therefore the disease, are addressed.
As we have pointed out, synthetics of any kind are not usable as nutritional building blocks, and therefore are unable to address these deficiencies on the fundamental level and be an aid to good health. Although synthetic vitamins are likely to have fewer side effects than drugs, it is more helpful to see them for what they are: low-dose synthetic drugs that address disease on the peripheral or symptomatic level. This is the primary argument for their lack of effectiveness as health providers.
Vitamins may be used in emergency-care situations, and many health professionals put vitamins in the same category as drugs. This makes sense; synthetic vitamins are isolated man-made chemical compounds and therefore are similar to drugs. Truly naturally occurring vitamins are not at all like synthetic vitamins, and as such are not in the same category as drugs. Naturally occurring vitamins are derived solely from food and medicinal sources such as fruits, vegetables, or botanicals. Synthetic vitamins, on the other hand, are mode in laboratories by chemical processes usually from base chemical sources.
As the nature-made molecular structure of naturally occurring vitamins is undisturbed by the manufacturing process and their delicate matrix of cofactors maintained, they are highly usable and effective as nutritional building blocks for the elimination of disease-causing deficiencies and the creation of health.