Supplements cause liver damage? Not so fast …

I need to be straight with you. There are days when fighting this fight gets exhausting. I get tired. And I also get angry. But I keep on pushing forward, because I know how important it is that I continue to reveal the science that the corrupt medical industry wants to suppress.

Still, when I wake up to yet another negative news article about vitamins, minerals, or other natural supplements, I sometimes just want to pull the covers back over my head.

When yet another patient comes into my office and tells me that his other doctors say I’m just squandering his time and money, well…I have to say I’m insulted. And honestly, just plain sick of hearing it.

Because here’s the truth. This e-letter — as well as my monthly Logical Health Alternatives newsletter and everything else I write and speak about — is solidly and thoroughly researched.

Every single thing I put out there is supported by science. And I find that science by searching and reading…and then searching and reading some more. I spend hours upon hours staying up with the science. And not just in the field of natural medicine, but in conventional medicine as well. I want to make sure that everything I share is not only accurate, but also valuable.

In short, I don’t make stuff up. I seek out the information I know will be most useful on your path to health, and I share it passionately. Because this is a hard path to walk, but it’s necessary…and so worth it.

Now, regarding the countless hours I spend researching and staying abreast of all the latest studies and trials… Do you honestly think conventional doctors are doing the same? Or do you think they’re just toeing the party line and accepting the mainstream medical agenda?

I’ll tell you what I think. I think most doctors consider themselves smart and discerning. But at the end of the day, I don’t think they’re actually making well-informed and unbiased decisions. I think they’re swallowing the pills sold to them by Big Pharma.

And why wouldn’t they? It’s what’s expected — even required of them in some cases — by the standard protocols of their hospitals or practices. The will to think independently has been beaten (and legislated) out them.

Want proof that many in the mainstream community are incapable of formulating nuanced thoughts on complicated topics? Look no further than their journals. Nearly every time they write about natural products, their ignorance is broadcast loud and clear.

Here’s one that has me seething. It’s just so typical of mainstream medicine’s “baby-with-the-bathwater” approach to natural medicine. This study was just published in the journal Hepatology. With a big splashy headline announcing that supplements and herbs cause liver damage. Of course when you dig in, you get to the actual data — which shows something much less headline worthy: Some supplements (though they can’t say which) may cause liver damage.

Shocker, right? Nope, not at all. Those of us in the natural health industry have been aware of tainted and unsafe supplements for years. And, I might add, actively fighting against them.

But the misleading headline isn’t the worst of it. The worst part is that the study itself finds that an over-the-counter medicine (acetaminophen) is responsible for four times as many cases of chemical-induced liver damage as all supplements combined. But did that make it into the headline? Of course not.

And it gets darker from there.

The “dietary and herbal supplements” studied included anabolic steroids (which are illegal). Those alone were responsible for a third of all liver damage associated with supplements.

The remaining supplements — which, combined, accounted for only 13 percent of the cases of liver damage — included supplements that may contain one ingredient or any combination of ingredients, such as vitamins, minerals, herbs, amino acids or some other lesser known substances.

In total, the cases were thought to be linked to 116 different products. So it’s impossible to look at this research and say that any specific ingredient is responsible for liver damage.

But that didn’t stop them from publishing a paper calling “herbal and dietary supplements” as a whole into question.

It’s not just the headline that’s misleading. The authors then tie it all together in their interviews with the media by warning that while liver damage from supplements is rare, risks go up when supplements are overused, taken in combination with other supplements or with prescription medications, or used for extended periods of time.

Now, as you and I know, just because they say something doesn’t make it true. For instance, I’d like to see one piece of evidence that the longer you use a supplement, the more harmful it becomes. I’ve never seen a study indicating risks from long-term use of any natural supplement. And as I said, I immerse myself in research.

The authors also point out that patients don’t always tell their doctors about all the supplements they’re taking, which makes reporting difficult. Well of course patients don’t disclose all the supplements they’re taking! Not after they’ve had their doctors react with scorn and ridicule. Add to that the fact that most doctors are misinformed (or completely uninformed) about supplements, and you can see why the trust is gone.

It’s important to remember that as many as half of Americans use dietary supplements of one kind or another. Of course, that’s something pharmaceutical companies hate with a passion. So Big Pharma gobbles up all the small supplement companies — I believe with the intention of shutting them down and burying the important work they do. Unfortunately, studies like this one just give them more ammunition for that fight.

That said, it’s a fight that I’m in for the long haul. But I’d be lying if I said I don’t get weary sometimes.

To be sure, we’ve won a few battles. But this most recent attack just makes it clear that we have yet to win the war.