FACTS ABOUT PERNICIOUS ANEMIA & B-12 DEFICIENCY
ILLUSIONS PILED UPON ILLUSIONS
Our systemic make-money-off-of-everything culture distorts simple truths so pervasively it is incredibly hard to sort out things and see reality “in the raw.” For example and because the foundation of our culture is what I call “separative consciousness” it strongly promotes isolated elements (gotten only nutrition manufacturers). Naturally sane living is not encouraged. Simple intuition and common sense are undermined. We confuse the accuracy of intricate mechanical science with a morass of very poor biological advise. Even the root chemical view (derivative of the still deeper math-based/mechanical vision of nature) distorts the non-mechanical essence of all of life in nature. This is explained in depth in my philosophy of raw-wisdom. As a result and in my judicious opinion, that orientation does not give us a balanced, healthy and objective view of how to live our own lives. Real, integral and healthy objectivity arises from looking at the whole and not the part. That is why the term “partiality” is equated with non-objectivity – the loss of a healthy, integrated and whole consciousness.
A COMMERICAL GATEWAY
Thus if a lab test shows some lower level for a specifically-isolated element (which then is “at fault” or causal for a condition) we may run to the nearest store to buy that element out of fear. Or we may retain more sane distrust. I tend to do the latter. In my sixth decade on this planet in this lifetime, I kind of have been around the block a few times – so to speak – or am not as easily fooled. This reminds me how allopathic medicine uses screening tests (sometimes expensive and sometimes offered free as a come-along) for what they call “prevention.” But allopathic medicine is not sincerely interested effective prevention. That would put most medical practices out of business. Screening is the main gateway to treatments. God-forbid we pull the veil to allow all to see this clearly.
TAKING ISOLATED NUTRIENTS
It is fine to then to take an isolated nutrient and provide symptomatic relief of what is seen via a screening test. But this is not real and true healing. Healing is the “making whole process!” To do this partially is “playing with mirrors” (so to speak). Confusing a surface reality with a depth reality is “illusion.” Consciously fostering illusions is deception. Deceptions or fraud are common in commercial venues. Thus removal of an isolated symptom (which then is called a “cure” of that symptom) is not the same as any integrally bringing oneself to health and wholeness (and without illusions).
Our bodies don’t work like machines, with separate, mechanical and replaceable parts. They don’t work like a clock, tick tock, with separate steps. With a machine you can fix the separate parts alone. You can replace a motor or a pump or a brake lining and all is fine. Life, however, does not work in this way but oppositely. This is because the essence of life is really consciousness (the root relationship of connection itself in all of nature). The restoration of that consciousness then makes us healthy and whole. This is why fasting reverses pernicious anemia in the absence of B-12.
WHAT IS PERNICIOUS ANEMIA?
PA is A diseased characterized by a large number of immature blood cells as seen under a microscope. Pernicious anemia is alternatively known as Addison’s anemia or Addisonian anemia. This is because in 1855 it was first discovered by the English physician Thomas Addison. At that time, PA was called idiopathic anemia. Later in 1872 Anton Biermer renamed it “pernicious anemia” – further known as Biermer’s anemia to honor the latter doctor. Still another term for pernicious anemia is megaloblastic anemia – refering to a malformation of blood cells.
ANEMIA AMONG MEAT-EATERS
Pernicious anemia was first discovered among meat-eaters. No one is actually immune, whether one is an avid meat-eater, milk-guzzler, content vegetarian, vegan, raw-vegan, and so on – and precisely because all may get digestive tract disorders and all age eventually.
ROLE OF B-12
Pernicious anemia, defined by a blood-screening test, is “cured” by injections of vitamin B-12. “Cured” means the symptoms disappear for a given time. PA is thus defined as also “caused by” the lack or deficiency of this B-12 ingredient. But this confuses an isolated element/symptom and its removal with an overall path to wholeness and health. It take seriously the surface causality past other deeper factors.
PERNICIOUS ANEMIA AMONG THE AGED
Statistics show it is more prevalent in old-age or with those over 65 – approximately one percent of the population compared to about 1/7th of one percent for the population as a whole. In the US, this means about 400,000 people currently have this disorder and the greater proportion being the elderly and those with compromised digestive tracts. Approximately 3% of the US population is vegetarian or roughly 9-10 million. What this also means is that even if every one of the cases were from among the vegetarian population (which is not at all the case) the ailment would only involve 4% of the vegetarian population. Estimates of the number of vegans (avoiding all animal products) in the US have been divergent. If vegans account for approximately 1% of the population, and say half of all cases of pernicious anemia were from among vegans, then about 6% of vegans would have this ailment. This is just not the case. It is as rare among vegetarians as vegans and the rest of the population.
PERNICIOUS ANEMIA AMONG VEGANS
Health is always gotten at some point of balance. Thus having a temperature either above or below 98.6 (or the equivalent in Celcius) may be unhealthy if the divergence is extreme. The numbers themselves are not significant. The point of balance, of connective inner unity, is what is vital. Similarly, the fact that vegans (those who eat no animal products) have slightly lower blood B-12 levels is not necessarily significant. The lower level and the higher related elevation of homocysteine could theoretically be a sign of better-than-average health until proven otherwise. Vegans who modestly eat fats, for example, tend to have lower blood pressure. Low blood pressure is generally healthy. Extreme lower or higher blood pressure is not. Thus the next statement may upset some, but while ample evidence exists that vegans have indeed less B-12 in their bloodstream, especially when eating non-organic diets, I have not seen a study showing that vegans are more susceptible to extreme B-12 deficiencies than others. Please let me know if you ever find such a study. As Gabriel Cousens writes, though he is a supporter of supplementation, “most vegans show adequate B12 levels to make clinical deficiency unlikely.” The argument therefore shifts to the elevated homocysteine levels (brought down by supplementation) and as being what’s really significant, and supposedly adding a new level of risk for neurological and arterial harm. Here again, I am not convinced because there is no such study of vegans eating the best of living and organic foods demonstrating this risk. Please let me know if you find such a study. Dr. Cousens refers also to a well-known group of black Hebrews who migrated to Israel and where their babies evidence a high level of infant B-12 deficiency. They were also opposed to supplementation. But the question is a) what kind of vegetarians were these black Hebrews, b) did they eat organically and c) did they cook all their foods, killing friendly bacteria? Also did their culture practice periodic methods of detoxification, and so on. Was there a genetic factor involved? In any event, this example does not convince me that an average or enlightened vegan family is at risk.
PERNICIOUS ANEMIA LINKED TO DIGESTIVE TRACT PROBLEMS
Patients who have had stomach or intestinal parts surgically removed are more likely to get this disease. This is because the “intrinsic factor” is produced in our digestive tract which apparently helps B-12 to be absorbed.
PERNICIOUS ANEMIA SYMPTOMS
Blood and urine tests are definitive for how pernicious anemia is defined. But PA is also associated with mania, degeneration of the spinal chord, and almost any kind of neurological ailment. Symptoms may include sleeplessness, tiredness, lack of energy, depression and so on. But therein lies the problem because such a list of common symptoms is far too broad to be practically definitive.
FED BY FEAR
A commerical medical care system thrives best on widespread/broad-based fear. When a given definition of symptoms is too open-ended, anyone can fall into a cycle of fear about the topic. This is a greatest bonanza for further supplement sales! In this regard, Andrew Perlot notes on his raw-food-health.net site: ” While it’s a very serious issue, vitamin B-12 deficiency has become the medical boogeyman because its so poorly understood and believed to cause a wide range of problems.”
B-12 AND ORGANIC SOILS
Bacteria in the gut tend to produce B-12. The vast majority of scientists function within the mechanical, life-stripped, and thus sterile view of nature. As a consequence, when testing vegetables, the ones they study are commonly grown in pesticide-ridden, relatively bacteria-sterile, soil-dead fields. Organic produce have more B-12 (2-3 times more according to a Swiss study conducted in 1992). You rarely hear fear-mongering about eating pesticide-ridden vegetables. That’s because that kind of fear would hurt major commercial interests. Attacking vegan diets spuriously helps enhance the consolidated meat and dairy industries. Jumbled facts are constantly confused with propaganda
GETTING B-12 FROM ALGAE
Tests have shown you can get above average B-12 traces from algae like chlorella and spirulina. However, they also contain a significant amount of concobalamin, analogues of B-12 which it is said can interfere with the absorption of B-12! The more active forms of B-12 are called methylcobalamin and adenosylcobalamin, preferable over the precursor cyanocobalamin.
Another fact commonly is that B-12 is produced internally, and probably at many different locations where bacteria thrive in our bodies. Yet it is hard to find again a single study that measures internal B-12 production levels. Focusing on that issue generally requires government or corporate funding. However, no vitamin or pharmaceutical company is stupid enough to fund such a study, risking hurting its B-12 sales!
HOW MUCH DO WE SUPPOSEDLY NEED?
According to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies we need 2.4 micrograms per day of B-12. Ten ounces of organic raw spinach will provide that, not counting the unknown internal production of B-12. But anti-vegetarian scientists may say that organic veggies are not reliable sources of B-12. Addressing this, Andrew Perlot adds that ” this stance makes little sense. Every animal on the earth seems to do fine with their B12. Either they’re getting it through food sources or they’re producing it internally. So if we can’t do this as science says, man is apparently some pathetic wastrel who is incapable of surviving on this earth without the help of supplements.” Actually we may indeed be different and pathetic wastrels because we have adopted a worldview that sterilizes our environment. For those feeding on a chemicalized, life-stripped diets (as found in convenience stores and fast-food restaurants), it might be wise to actually take B-12 supplements for an interim remedy. But ultimately this fails to address the root problem of living vastly out of harmony with nature.
WRONG POINT OF REFERENCE
The modern mechanical view of nature, quite objective for uses such as becoming a car mechanic, is not really objective for being in a healing rather than treatment practice of medicine. In my philosophy of raw-wisdomor naturolism, what is vital is that we raise the consciousness, the connectedness of the body to heal the whole – not the parts separately as we do with a machine. Thus it is not at all surprising to hear a story told by Dr. Virginia Vetrano, namely of a patient who had been taking pills and shots of B-12 twice a month for many years without any relief. Yet after fasting under the supervision of Dr. Vetrano, her B12 levels rose and her anemia disappeared. Other fasting centers have reported similar results.
ALTERNATIVE HOLISTIC APPROACHES
With a water fast, we drink just water and take in no supplements. How then is pernicious anemia caused by a B-12 deficiency if a pure fast with absolutely no B-12 intakes can reverse the condition? The truth is that modern medicine’s method of gaining “objective” knowledge in living terrains is entirely faulty. Water brings out life and connective consciousness. It is the bringing out of that connective consciousnessthat really heals our inner being and makes us physically, mentally and spiritually whole. There are many other approaches besides pure fasting – such as using a diet of living nutrition, various other methods of detoxification, periodic exercise, and positive mind-body work. All of these are grounded ultimately in a non-mechanical model of our very deepest nature.