BY Ellis Barker J.
DURING more than half a century scientists have searched for the micro-organism of cancer but their search has been utterly futile. The greatest specialists on cancer readily admit, at least in private, that nothing is known about the disease, that half a century of intensified scientific investigation has yielded no practical result whatever and has produced only a large and disorderly mass of facts, which are totally devoid of practical value.
Fabulous amounts of money have been spent on cancer research, especially in America and England, and the money has been spent in vain. During the period of intensified cancer research, the cancer mortality has, roughly speaking, quadrupled throughout the world.
Science may discover what is called the “guilty microbe” of cancer, but it does not follow that the discovery of the cancer micro-organism, if there is a micro-organism, will enable us to cure cancer. More than twenty centuries ago, in the time of Hippocrates, tuberculosis of the lungs were treated and cured by open air, sun baths in the Solaria, wise nutrition with plenty of milk, sea journeys, etc. Fifty years ago Robert Koch discovered the bacillus of tuberculosis.
It was promptly assumed that that discovery would rapidly lead to a scientific antidote, which would destroy the bacillus and free the world of tuberculosis. Hundreds of eminent researchers have made experiments on animals of every kind, but their attempts have utterly failed. No specific able to destroy the bacillus was discovered. Scientists found that they could create tuberculosis in animals and countless animals became victims of scientific curiosity, but the various forms of tuberculin evolved have proved more or less useless.
It should be added for the sake of justice that homoeopaths employed the virus of tuberculosis for treatment long before Koch, as I have shown in my book “Miracles of Healing and How They are done”.
Cancer treatment, although nominally greatly advanced during recent years by early operation, has by no means stayed the constant and rapid advance of the disease. During the last twenty years early and radical cancer operations have increased in the most extraordinary manner. A doctor who discovers a suspicious growth immediately sends the patient to the surgeon, even if his suspicion is unfounded and the surgeon takes no risks, but operates if the case is at all doubtful.
One would imagine that in view of the great improvement of technique in operating, and the use of much-praised radium, X-rays, etc., the surgeons would have had some success in stemming the ever advancing tide of cancer. That has not been the case. During the last twenty years the cancer mortality in England has exactly doubled, according to the very reliable official statistics the increase in the cancer mortality in England has been as follows:.
Total Cancer Proportions of Cancer
Mortality Mortality Deaths to all Deaths
1908 520,456 32,717 1 in 16
1928 460,389 56,253 1 in 9.
In other countries the cancer mortality has increased in a similar manner. Meanwhile, the mortality from tuberculosis has steadily diminished in all civilized countries although tuberculosis is not treated scientifically but on nature cure lines in exactly the same way in which it was treated by the Ancient Greeks 2,000 years ago. Old Hippocrates proclaimed “Nature is the curer of disease,” and this maxim remains true with all diseases, including cancer.
The presence of a certain micro-organism in a certain disease does not prove that the micro-organism has caused the disease. There may be a micro-organism in gout, but we know that gout is created by over consumption of alcohol and of heating foods. There may be a micro-organism of rickets, but we know that rickets is caused by lack of sunshine and faulty feeding.
Tuberculosis is a disease of under-nutrition and foul air. I imagine that people who are chronically under-fed and who live in foul air will fall victims of tuberculosis even if they live on an island on which tuberculosis is unknown. There are certain deadly germs which are to be found in the mouths of most people and which do no harm as long as people live wisely.
For instance, the pneumo-coccus, the causative agent of pneumonia, may be found in the mouths of the healthiest and it is perfectly harmless until the general condition of the individual is so seriously weakened that the pneumococcus can do its appointed work and give to the patient the finishing stroke. for all one knows there may be an organism of cancer existing in all of us which is, as a rule, as harmless as the pneumococcus.
The scientists who specialize in cancer research work practically exclusively with the microscope and the test tube. They do not condescend to use plain commonsense in endeavouring to solve the cancer mystery. Yet there is little mystery about cancer. The principal facts about cancer are obvious to everyone who is willing to use his commonsense.
Cancer is a disease of civilization. It has been clearly described by Hippocrates and the other Greek and Roman medical writers of antiquity, who treated cancer exactly as it is treated now by destroying the local growth with the knife, the cautery, the application of Arsenic paste, etc. However, in addition, the ancients employed dietetic measures which are now disregarded to the great misfortune of cancer sufferers.
Cancer is undoubtedly a disease of civilization. The ancient Greeks, Romans, Hindus, were all acquainted with it thousands of years ago. If cancer was an infectious disease, one would imagine that in the course of centuries it should have spread all over the earth. The amazing and most important fact about cancer is that it is not a universal disease like tuberculosis and syphilis which infect people in all countries of the world, but that it is a disease of civilization.
In my cancer books I have quoted scores of doctors and surgeons who have spent many years of activity among primitive races leading primitive lives, who have never seen a single case of cancer among the natives. Cancer is almost unknown among the primitive natives in most parts of Africa, but the same natives readily become victims of cancer if they settle in the coast towns and adopt the diet and the methods of living of the civilized.
The white people who live among the cancer-free African natives die in large numbers of cancer and they furnish the only cancer patients of the local doctors and surgeons. Dr. Frederick Hoffman and others who have told us that cancer was exceedingly rare among the North American negroes while they lived under conditions of slavery on primitive native food. The freed American negroes who ape the white man in every way die of cancer in large numbers.
There are certain diseases of civilization, diseases which are not known to primitive races leading primitive lives. Natives, whether they live in the farthest North, on the equator or in portions of the earth between, whether they live on a vegetarian diet or on an exclusive meat diet like the Eskimos, or on a mixed diet, have invariably perfect teeth, although they do not employ pseudo-scientific tooth brushes and tooth pastes and dentists.
Dental decay and pyorrhoea are practically unknown among naturally-living animals, but they are frequently found among house dogs who eat the same food as their master. Natives living primitive lives suffer practically never from constipation and auto-intoxication, gastric and duodenal ulcer, colitis, appendicitis, diabetes, they have practically never tonsillitis, adenoids, etc., all of which are universal among us. However, our scientists search for the micro-organisms of dental decay and pyorrhoea, of colitis and appendicitis, etc. and try to cure these disorders by a scientific preparation, a very futile proceeding.
If, as I maintain, and as I have maintained for many years, cancer is a disease of civilization, of faulty living, then we ought to be able to eliminate cancer by reforming our methods of living. But the cancer researchers refuse even to consider so simple and so obvious a proceeding.
Wherever the people are most civilized, wherever they have most drastically deviated from natural, primitive methods, there the cancer mortality is highest. In most countries the cancer mortality is about twice as large in the town as in the agricultural districts, even if we allow for the number of country people who go to town to be operated upon and who die in the town.
Furthermore, there are certain occupations in which the cancer mortality is particularly heavy. England is, I believe, the only country in the world in which statistics of deaths from the principal causes according to the occupations have been published. The seventy-fifth Annual Report of the english Registrar-General, published in 1923, contained statistics from which we learn that mortality from cancer differed as follows among some occupations, during the three years 1910, 1911, 1912:.
Merchant Seamen 110
Physicians and Surgeons 70
Agricultural Labourers 54
Clergymen and Priests 45.
If those who control the cancer propaganda truly wish to reduce the cancer mortality they should proclaim from the housetops: “If you wish to avoid cancer, do not live the lives of barmen, brewers, butchers and seamen, but live the lives of agricultural labourers, and clergymen.” If you do so the cancer mortality could be reduced to one-half or one-third.
Unfortunately cancer propaganda is in the hands of the surgeons and researchers who proclaim that there is no cure for cancer except surgical treatment, which has utterly failed. Poor cancer sufferers instead of being urged on a simple natural diet, are told that they can eat, drink and smoke what they like and the end is evil.
At first sight it seems curious that the cancer mortality among seamen is very excessive. It is widely believed that seamen who live an active life in the open air are an exceptionally healthy set of men. After all, weaklings do not become seamen, they are more likely to become waiters or tailors. Unfortunately the seamen live on an artificial and extremely heating diet, almost devoid of fresh food.
They live on preserved meat, preserved vegetables, white bread, etc., foods which are apt to create ill- health. Fresh air is of comparatively minor importance, and so is exercise. Animals living in nature do not take exercise for exercise sake and do not seek the fresh air for the benefit of their lungs. They take exercise only to obtain their food and drink and they sleep as a rule in warm and airless spots, in thickets, dens, burrows, etc. Yet they suffer neither from tuberculosis nor from cancer.