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more on sodium chlorite - the 'miracle mineral supplement'

After reading & commenting on that letter, which attributed health benefits to sodium chlorite, I found my interest had been piqued. Just what has been claimed for this chemical? So I went looking...

... & found, among other things, a webpage claiming all sorts of things for this 'miracle mineral supplement'.

Apparently it's not the sodium chlorite itself, but the chlorine dioxide that is produced from it in slightly acidic solution. The acetic acid in vinegar is supposedly ideal as an acidifier, act[ing] like a blasting cap by lowering the pH of the chlorine dioxide without setting it off. Then - you drink it! (Although in miniscule quantities - 6-15 drops in a glass of water... Not quite a homeopathic concentration, then.)

This is where things get interesting, from a chemical & biological point of view. When a chlorine dioxide ion contacts a harmful pathogen, it instantly rips up to five electrons from the pathogen, in what can be likened to a microscopic explosion... harmless to us, but terminal to pathogens. The pathogen - an electron donor - is rendered harmless due to the involuntary surrendering of its electrons to the chlorine dioxide - an electron acceptor - and the resulting release of energy. Oxidised by the chlorine ion, the former pathogen becomes a harmless salt.

Hmmm. "Pathogen" = 'an agent that causes disease, especially a living microorganism such as a bacterium or fungus.' Now, chloride dioxide gas is used in killing bacteria on food - but this is in relatively high concentrations & a far cry indeed from killing bacteria/fungi within the body. (The belief that it can be used in this way sounds similar to the belief that if colloidal silver in an ointment on your skin will kill bacteria, how much better it will be for you if you drink the stuff. At least with ClO2, I guess you're not likely to turn blue...) But it's not nice stuff: If you were to breathe air containing chlorine dioxide gas, you might experience irritation in your nose, throat, and lungs. If you were to eat or drink large amounts of chlorine dioxide or chlorite, you might experience irritation in the mouth, esophagus, or stomach.

Also - I really want to know - how would the ClO2 distinguish between a pathogen, & normal body cells? According to the site's author, 'toxic' or 'diseased' body cells are more acidic than normal cells, & this underlies the ClO2 effect. A pity, then, that normal cells, happily respiring away, also acidify their surroundings as they release carbon dioxide - a necessary effect that triggers release of oxygen from the haemoglobin in circulating red blood cells (the Bohr effect), thus allowing the cells to continue respiring. Can the 'miracle mineral supplement' tell the difference here? And how does it get round the body, anyway?

Apparently by being picked up by the red blood cells, instead of oxygen... Red blood cells ... do not differentiate between chlorine dioxide & oxygen. Therefore, [after you've drunk the sodium chlorite solution], red blood cells pick up chlorine dioxide ions that are deposited on the stomach wall where it normally gathers nutrients of various kinds before journeying through the body. Then, when the red blood cells armed with chlorine dioxide encounter parasites, fungi, or diseased cells that all have low pH and a positive ionic charge, the 'aliens' are destroyed along with the chlorine dioxide ion.

Hmm. Chlorine dioxide is certainly used as a sterilising agent for red blood cells. But in high enough quantities it can markedly reduce your blood's ability to carry oxygen - hardly a Good Thing. Just as well, then, that the stuff isn't all that likely to enter the bloodstream, given that it's supposed to be taken in miniscule quantities & that the odds of it being picked up by red blood cells is vanishingly small. Far more likely that it will be consumed by some other redox reaction in the gut.(Oxygen saturation of haemoglobin is usually around 98%, so there isn't much spare capacity there.)

And, of course, your body already has a perfectly good way of dealing with parasites, fungi, & so on - it's called an immune system :-)

 

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16 Comments

Hi Alison, My mother has terminal cancer. Do you think it is possible that this chemical may have a helpful effect?

Hi David

I'm so sorry to hear about your mother's illness.

On the matter of whether sodium chlorite might be helpful - I would say, no - I haven't seen anything in my own reading to indicate that it would be useful in these circumstances. Data on animal testing indicates that it has no effect on tumour growth & there is nothing that I can see in the (quick) literature scan that I've just done, to say that it's been tested in humans. The supposed mechanism for it to work, as given on the website that I commented on (& others) is basically nonsense. To add to what I wrote in the original post - yes, ClO2 is a reactive compound, & it reacts rapidly with things like iron & purines & amino acids. But all these things are present in your gut - it's all going to be used up in those reactions & none of it is going to make it through to the bloodstream. I wouldn't spend money on it. (After all, you're essentially drinking swimming pool water...)

In other words, if your mother is under the care of an oncologist she'll be getting the best care & advice possible. I know - from my own mother's illness & death from cancer - that you're always wishing there's something else you can do. But I would say, make the most of the time you have with her, & trust her doctors & nurses to do all they can to make sure she has the best quality of life that can be achieved.

Dear Alison
I am a Medical Laboratory Scientist, and I am surprised at your attitude. Your theorising about MMS, without backing it up with your own personal experience, is unscientific to say the least.
From what I can gather, you are quite prepared to dismiss MMS... even as a last resort. I am not surprised though. Your apparent indoctrination by allopathy is akin to religious intolerance.
Allopathy kills thousands of New Zealanders each year with ineffective toxic drugs. Iatrogenesis is ignored. Sooner or later the public will discover the widespead scams of the medical industry. Then the penny will drop and how will they explain their failures?
I have some advise for you. Have an open mind about MMS, try it yourself and don't pre judge.

Regards Emanuel van den Bemd NZMLT
Medical Laboratory Scientist.

My 'own personal experience' would amount to no more than anecdote. Anecdote = data, so it would in fact be unscientific to base my statements on personal experience. There is no scientific underpinning to the claims made for MMS & its proposed mode of action is improbable in the extreme.

Hi Alison,

I would have to agree with Emanuel's previous comment. Don't draw conclusions from what you read;...try it first.
I have personally used MMS for a couple of years now and have had great results.
I have recommended it to many others, and know of people completely cured of cancer (among many other things), using only MMS; no other treatments. One was a lady with a 6cm pancreas cancer tumor, sent home to die. Two months on, her daughter tells me she is completely cured. Another friend of a friend cured himself of prostrate cancer using only MMS. I have a cousin currently trying it for a brain tumor. Although(to my knowledge), no-one seems to have carried out 'approved clinical trials' on this product; positive reports are poping up around the world.
The point is, results speak louder than the closed minded, bias opinions that you will find pasted all over the internet.
I hope you will give it a try before you speak any further negative words about this amazing product. It is available from www.miraclemineral.co.nz if you want to test it for yourself,

Warm regards,

Roger

Hi Roger - thanks for your comments. The problem here, though, is that we're dealing with anecdotes rather than actual data. For example, was the friend of your friend formally diagnosed with prostate cancer, or was it a self-diagnosis? If the latter, then the 'cure' may not be what it first appears. Similarly, where is the medical diagnosis of a complete cure for a pancreatic tumour? (Hearsay evidence isn't sufficient.)
In addition, there is no mechanism by which MMS does what is claimed for it - basic chemistry & physics mean that it cannot act as described on many of the websites promoting its use.
If it does have an effect for some people then we are almost certainly looking at the placebo effect. Which would mean MMS wouldn't work to me, as I wouldn't expect it to :-) And the big worry with the placebo effect is that it may simply mask underlying conditions, rather than making them go away...
Cheers
Alison

I'm glad that there is information like this out. Despite the incredible amount of pro-MMS propaganda, gems like this find their way into my google results.

I've read a fair bit about it so far, and I have to agree that its complete nonsense. I'm no biochemist, but I understand the basic principles, and am good friends with somebody who is contemplating cancer research (I'm a university student). He claims in a video that cancer is caused by a "bug" that has presumably induced cancer somehow in the cells around it.

Jim Humble, the man promoting this makes me sick and angry. He doesn't understand any of the science involved and is claiming a miracle cure on the back of bleach, bleach! I hate people like this, spreading misinformation and mistrust of real science. That has saved many lives.

If there were 2 people wanting to get on the (hypothetical!) ark & JH was one of them, & only room for one, I'd be strongly inclined to leave JH behind. Promoting that total nonsense has the potential to harm so many lives :(

Dear Alison, Your critical thinking is a bit weak. You should know the term does not mean ungrounded criticism. You have only presented loaded questions and grossly falsified statements, such as 'There is no scientific underpinning to the claims made for MMS & its proposed mode of action is improbable in the extreme,' and '. . . there is no mechanism by which MMS does what is claimed for it - basic chemistry & physics mean that it cannot act as described on many of the websites promoting its use.'

To be more accurate, you would have to say something like, 'In the quick literature scan that I've done there is no . . . ' and 'In my limited knowledge of basic chemistry and physics I do not know of any . . .'

Before Jim Humble, ClO2 was used for water purification. The science does exist, and Mr. Humble is knowledgable of it.

Additionally, science usually follows genuine anecdote. It hears of some phenomanon and wants to know what's happening. And ultimately, all science is anecdotal.

If we subscribe to your logic, we are faced with the problem of quite a few licensed M.D.s in Africa curing tens of thousands of cases of serious diseases such as AIDS and cancer. Thousands of case histories are recorded from South America and other regions as well. And there are those of us who use it who can personally attest to its effectiveness and that we have not been harmed, even by the larger doses. If the dosing protocols are taken into account, one may understand why your statement: '. . . these things are present in your gut - it's all going to be used up in those reactions & none of it is going to make it through to the bloodstream,' is not valid.

And by saying, 'you're essentially drinking swimming pool water,' you've shown that you don't know your chemicals one from the other.

Clearly, to me, you're only out to discredit MMS by duping the public with your pseudoscience, and you're the one potentially denying people the cures they so need.

I have used MMS for six years and haven't had more than two very short-lived colds, and not just here in New Zealand, but having, during that time, traveled through fifteen third-world countries, backpacker style, on a budget, with no innoculations nor other medications.

It works. It saves lives. It is far safer than many approved medications.

cj

The science does exist, and Mr. Humble is knowledgable of it.
Does Mr Humble have any actual advanced science qualifications? No?

And ultimately, all science is anecdotal.
No, I'm afraid you're very wrong on that one. The plural of anecdote is not data.

we are faced with the problem of quite a few licensed M.D.s in Africa curing tens of thousands of cases of serious diseases such as AIDS and cancer.
Citations, please. If this stuff is really so wonderful, why haven't those using it published their resuts? If said results stood up to scrutiny, then this 'treatment' would be mainstream by now. I wonder why it isn't?

'you're essentially drinking swimming pool water,' you've shown that you don't know your chemicals one from the other.
Oh really. And so why does Mr Humble recommend that people wishing to self-dose use Pool Shock as the basis for this? You do know what Pool Shock is?

It is far safer than many approved medications.
MMS is industrial bleach. Used in the concentrations recommended by many 'practitioners', it can, will & does damage the lining of the gut. Not exactly a safe substance.

’C. Jones’ - Alison’s presentation is fine. MMS is nonsense.

I love this piece of fiction from the advertising that Alison quoted: “it instantly rips up to five electrons from the pathogen, in what can be likened to a microscopic explosion... harmless to us, but terminal to pathogens”.

I’ll spare you deconstructing the nonsense in this, but note how this description has it ‘magically’ targeting the pathogens and nothing else… a real nonsense as it’d just as much affect the patient - not a useful thing in a treatment but thats just sort-of not mentioned…

If the mixture was strong enough to ‘injure’ a pathogen it’d also be strong enough to affect the patient badly.

Yes, Grant, that's one of the silliest parts of it - how an inanimate chemical somehow 'knows' what's pathogenic & what's not!

You guys have to team up against me now?

I didn't realise my comments had gone live and been blasted.  [If this is too long to fit in the comments space on this page, read the full text at http://cjcomments.20m.com.]  So here's my piece de resistance :

The following is to be considered my opinion only.

No, Grant, what Alison wrote is not fine, not because it's against MMS but because it is opinion misleadingly stated as fact, and it is uninformed about the science involved.  You both are stating your ‘educated’ opinions only, but insisting they are factual and definitive.

You mock that which you know naught of, when in fact many chemical reactions involve the ‘ripping’ of electrons from one molecule by another.  (Although the not uncommon term is obviously metaphorical, it describes a legitimate phenomenon in chemical reactions; e.g., chemicals termed ‘oxidizing agents’ are said to ‘rip electrons off other chemicals and take them for themselves’).

In my understanding when one molecule ‘steals’ electrons from another (also metaphorically speaking) it is because of their different charges.  Actually, science has been around for a long time that states that many pathogens are uniquely ‘charged’, as in Gram Staining, where the (inanimate) stains ‘know’ (also metaphorically speaking) which are pathogens and which are human cells .

We also know that many cures are accepted without knowing how they work.  Even recent modern methods nevertheless take decades to find the ‘new’ science to explain these.  If those scientists accepted dogma that what is known about those substances is all there is to be known, they'd have never done the science.  Can you honestly say that at this very moment you can confidently discredit MMS because all of the science that will ever be known about it is already known (and that you know all of it)?

Take our own UMF for example (unique manuka factor).  It is a proven against bad bacteria (Dr. Peter Molan, MBE, Associate Professor in Biochemistry at Waikato University, 1981), and is selective in that it doesn't destroy the human host, yet to my knowledge, they are still trying to discover how it works.  For that matter how do any antibiotics and other medicines know to kill pathogens and not humans?  How does the oxygen you say is released by the immune system accomplish this?  And how would the deadly poison that you claim ClO2 to be ‘get round the body, anyway?’ to do its deadly work?

The blog that begins this page was created in reverse.  Like Pasteur's contemporaries standing in his lab yet refusing to even look in his microscope because they knew no such thing as his germ theory was possible, Dr. Campbell has omitted to first find out whether chlorine dioxide does what MMS proponents claim to be observing.  She goes straight to trying to explain why it doesn't.  Science does the opposite, hearing of a phenomenon, looks to see if it is occurring, and if it is, or appears to, proceeds to investigate what is occurring.

Dr. Campbell's approach can only ever produce inapplicable and skewed logic, trying to make things like the Bohr Effect fit her prejudice.  Science blog people should stick to reporting things that science has actually scientifically investigated.

If it can't work according to your old, reliable, known phenomena, then whatever is occurring involves some other not yet known (by you) phenomena.

As to what science does exist for chlorine dioxide, are you certain you know all of it?  This wikipedia article says,

It is more effective as a disinfectant than chlorine in most circumstances against water borne pathogenic microbes such as viruses, bacteria and protozoa - including the cysts of Giardia and the oocysts of Cryptosporidium.
If one puts that together with the double-blind experiment described in this paper in pdf on the website of the U.S. National Center for Biotechnology Information, one would be very irresponsible indeed to refuse to admit there is a very reasonable possibility that ‘the science’ may someday be discovered which demonstrates that MMS works and how.  It says in the abstract:
. . . Phase II considered the impact on normal subjects of daily ingestion of the disinfectants at a concentration of 5 mg/l. for twelve consecutive weeks. . . .  The three phases of this controlled double-blind clinical evaluation of chlorine dioxide and its potential metabolites in human male volunteer subjects were completed uneventfully.  There were no obvious undesirable clinical sequellae noted by any of the participating subjects or by the observing medical team.  In several cases, statistically significant trends in certain biochemical or physiological parameters were associated with treatment; however, none of these trends was judged to have hysiological consequence.  One cannot rule out the possibility that, over a longer treatment period, these trends might indeed achieve proportions of clinical importance.  However, by the absence of detrimental physiological responses within the limits of the study, the relative safety of oral ingestion of chlorine dioxide and its metabolites, chlorite and chlorate, was demonstrated.
I'm not defending MMS here as much as I am insisting on honest publication on your part in your accusations of someone else being dishonest, especially under the banner of our fine institution at the Waikato.  I don't know ‘the science’ any more than you do, but I have used MMS, which amounts to my own clinical trial, to my satisfaction.  You, however, cannot claim any direct experience, therefore, no matter how informed you are on existing science of ClO2, you must qualify all of your statements as assumption-based, speculative opinion or, better, say nothing.

Let us consider the data from the above two references plus a toxicity fact sheet at The Center For Disease Control.  The wiki paragraph refers to smaller concentrations than Humble's dose.  The double-blind experiment uses a larger dose than Humble's and for a longer continuous period.  The CDC sheet states that ‘Chlorine dioxide is a very reactive compound and breaks down quickly in the environment,’ and ‘Both chlorine dioxide and chlorite react quickly in water or moist body tissues,’ and ‘Neither chlorine dioxide or chlorite build up in the food chain,’ and thus I deem it safe to say it is not significantly toxically cumulative.  (The NCBI [double-blind] paper does cite slight evidence in rats and monkeys over time with high doses.)  Now:  If chlorine dioxide, in weaker solution than MMS (Wikipedia) kills pathogens, and (NCBI) does not significantly harm humans in stronger solutions than MMS for longer periods of time, then one could hypothesise that MMS could be (Wikipedia) effective against pathogens and (NCBI and CDC) not damage human cells, and this could be considered ‘selective’.

Your intent is apparent, to slay quacks, and since you know there will never be a global cure for a multitude of diseases, and cures for AIDS and cancer will only, if ever, be found through billions of dollars and millions of science-hours, you know Jim Humble is a quack and you don't even have to actually look at MMS to see if it does anything he claims to know it is your duty to destroy the man and his life's work.

Man has longed for effective global cures for millennia, why are you so quick to crush a potential one when it appears?  What sort of creature are we to hope for something we are certain will never exist?  What chance do we have of discovering it with that mindset?  The only thing to do is either join in and expedite the process of discovery with legitimate scientific investigation, or refrain from meaningless, misleading, divisive words and step aside.

You appear to be hoping the reader will take ‘the placebo effect’ as proof that the medicine being tested is bogus.  Are you aware of the current science regarding the placebo effect: that its statistical significance indicates there is some as yet unexplained, valid curative mechanism at work?

I propose that, therefore, if placebo cures are present with MMS that aren't present with other drugs, then that is a valid mechanism at work.

My greatest MMS success was in the remote bush with no other treatment, an infected foot injury with swollen foot and discoloured veins was brought under control by the use of ingested doses of MMS (and no topical application) within five hours and cured in twenty-four hours.  Could this be placebo?  If so, I welcome it as valid.

Does MMS work as a cure for diseases?  I make my own judgements, and I am not a follower of anyone.  How did I come to trust that Jim Humble and MMS are very likely to be legitimate?  I read an article about it in a magazine that had no vested interest in MMS.  It gave out the instructions for free (with Humble's endorsement) on making MMS.  It said that Humble has no vested interest in MMS.  Why do I believe that's true?  He urges us to purchase our supplies from reputable chemical suppliers and make our own MMS for a tenth of the price that opportunists on the internet sell it for.  So it would be mighty foolish for someone to choose a common, readily available chemical and make up false claims for it which anyone can easily test for themselves (on, say, a couple of colds or the flu) without buying his book or taking a course from, or ever paying Jim Humble or any MMS vendor a cent.  Why would he risk persecution and lawsuit for something that will never even pay him enough for the legal fees?  He can't even travel to his own home country anymore.

And then I tried it for myself, and it worked.

Come on Grant, your comment that If the mixture was strong enough to 'injure' a pathogen it'd also be strong enough to affect the patient badly is just an assumed, ungrounded conclusion, an opinion, that, by it's childish logic, would have to be said of any effective treatment, yet people do survive the many such treatments without harm.  People even sometimes survive chemotherapy (albeit with harm).  If you're saying that other drugs and chemicals that harm pathogens don't harm the patient, how do you propose to explain how chlorine dioxide is the exception?

You too seem prone to empty statements, such as saying ‘MMS is nonsense.’  Now how am I supposed to take that?  on your authority or because you have a science blog?  I can't prove to anyone that MMS works, but I object to this kind of highly opinionated, ungrounded propaganda about anything.

I also object to people shooting down something who have not at least tried it themselves, or done thorough research or laboratory experiments with it, or clinical trials of it.  If Dr. Campbell cries Citations!  You mustn't say anything about MMS without clinical trials to back it up.  I can also cry You mustn't say anything against MMS without clinical trials to back it up.  The lack of clinical trials is not proof that something doesn't work, only that no-one has done one yet.  It will be done in time, say, when someone comes along who is not fixed in his or her opinions, has heard anecdotes about it, is interested enough to look into instead of immediately criticise it, is qualified to trial it, and has the budget.

And those busy bush doctors don't have time or resources to write your stuffy old papers and submit to journals whose editors won't even read them.  They're too busy saving lives where it's a matter of life or death that the treatment they're using works.  You know how difficult it is to get science ‘published’.

And you expect people to consider your website legitimate but not his.  So here's my citation:  Read Jim Humble's book, and you will read about the necessarily affordable clinical trial of 800 cases that had been conducted as at that writing, with records in place and all.  And if you doubt that, travel to Malawi and investigate whether the places and files exist.

Let me just ask that those of us who don't actually know for a fact (and I don't mean extrapolations from old science) and don't care to find out please step aside and let those who do care work.

Dear Dr. Campbell:  I respect your position and your credentials, but you are making a mockery of scientific discussion.  Not one thing you have said has any substance or bearing on whether MMS could work (except that what you said could possibly be used in support of MMS just as easily).  I urge you to please reconsider the firmness of your position in relation to actual scientific findings or that the lack of them indicates their impossibility.
I did set this aside and review it for several days before posting it.  It's a very effective method for preventing oneself publishing regrettable self-defensive reactions in the heat of the moment.  I suggest you do the same before you reply, keeping in mind how much more dear it is to you to remain objective and rational than it is to engage in egoic, survival-instinct defences of previous mistakes.

In your reply you said, The plural of anecdote is not data.  Then how do you explain your previous, ‘Anecdote = data . . .’ (direct quote from your comments)?  (Perhaps it was a typo.)  You seem to like this little wordplay, but words are not the reality.  Whatever the relationship between ‘anecdote’ and ‘data’, it has no bearing on physical reality.

You appear to be hoping the reader will think ‘anecdote’ is some sort of taboo in science.  My dictionaries define anecdote as the relating of an isolated fact or incident, usually of a biographical nature.  It is true that the OED also says an account regarded as unreliable or hearsay but the first definition in that web edition of the Oxford English Dictionary is a short amusing or interesting story about a real incident or person.

Thus ‘anecdote’ is in fact ‘data’, as in the case of Dr. Snow, a pioneer in hygiene, and the many others in medical science who collect their most telling data in the form of the stories of the people who have the disease in question, in order to find commonalities.  What are statistics but anecdotes compiled?

That is what I mean that scientific investigation always starts with anecdote.  How else could science ever find anything to investigate other than someone relating his or her observations and experience?  And therein lies the value of all of Humble's anecdotal evidence, as well as that of people like me; eventually science will hear them and actually look into the matter.

All science also is completed only by anecdote.  Every outcome of every scientific experiment and trial has been, and can only ever be, passed to another human through anecdote, the scientists relating their observations and experiences.  That's what I mean that ultimately science is anecdotal, because it can never be conducted any other way.  Until it is told to others it doesn't exist to the rest of the world and to the field of science itself.  Scientists working on the same experiment together couldn't even do so without the exchange of anecdotes (in the most literal sense, the root from French, or via modern Latin from Greek anekdota ‘things unpublished’).

Your blog about MMS is not anecdote, however, because you have no experiences with it or observations of it to relate.  Your blog is pure opinion, and it is taboo in science to insist that your opinion is fact, and to attempt to hinder scientific progress that way.  (It is very common though.)

My main purpose for this post is to admonish the reader to rationally weigh truth versus untruth, facts versus suppositions.  I beseech the reader to realise that all of the statements on this page, such as MMS can and will cause damage to the gut, and would this and wouldn't that, are mere suppositions.  Scientific discovery is all about unexpected results.  If scientists adhered to conventional wisdom about what various substances and agents ‘can and will’ do or ‘would never’ do, we'd have no science.  Think about it:  Even taking into account all that is documented about chlorine dioxide in science, even the greatest expert cannot actually predict how it will perform in an application that science has never actually tested.

For example, Dr. Campbell says Hearsay evidence isn't sufficient, her broad and general comments such as, In addition, there is no mechanism by which MMS does what is claimed for it - basic chemistry & physics mean that it cannot act as described on many of the websites promoting its use. amount to hearsay.

I stress that the reader be alert to assumptions and suppositions, statements that imply an assumption that one thing means something that it doesn't, stating it as if it were a commonly known fact, and then make a prediction based on that as if the only possible conclusion, when in fact it is only supposed by the imagination of the writer.  One could say something that sounds logical, such as foxglove is highly poisonous and therefore it can never be used as a medicine.  Some people will take the last part of that as fact based on a common assumption about the first part.  (Digitalis comes from foxglove.)

What does there is no mechanism mean?  Having heard of none, Dr. Campbell assumes none has been officially found and therefore there is and never will be one, and the reader assumes she knows what she's talking about because of her credentials, and then someone swallows the supposition that none having been found means there is none and none will ever be found.

To say it would most certainly be a case of the placebo effect is another assumption.  There are ways to determine if the placebo effect is happening, and until those tests are done one cannot make that conclusion.  By saying if I tried it for myself and it worked it would be the placebo effect, therefore I won't try it, Dr. Campbell creates a convenient logic loop (which isn't actually logical at all) and attempts to exempt herself from any burden of proof.

I did not want to get into a meaningless debate, so I will make this one reply and then leave it at that.  You can have the last word.  I only wish to admonish potential readers to be discerning and distinguish between meaningful statements and debater tricks that actually say nothing.  Always pause to consider whether an argument or counter-argument actually addresses the subject at hand.  Distinguish between opinion and evidence.  Unfortunately a person's credentials don't constitute sufficient evidence, so take nothing on authority.  I recommend a book to be found free on the internet called 42 Fallacies by Michael C. LaBossiere identifying forty-two types of statements that are not what the speaker would like you to think they are.  (Find it yourself if you really care about truth.)

And dear Dr. Campbell, neither you nor I is qualified to comment on the science of MMS.  I have done my trials and live by my findings, but you, in order to publish comments backed by your credentials and your institution (the URL), have the duty to do extensive laboratory tests and clinical trials, or find some that have been done, or wait until some are done, and only then relate what you find, and not even then can you say it constitutes ‘proof’.  The reader should also know that real science never claims proof.  An extensively successful hypothesis can become a ‘theory’, and that is the closest to ‘proof’ they can go, because there are always exceptions and because almost all theories are eventually disproved or modified by new findings.

Regarding ‘pool water’, your article was originally about MMS, the solution of chlorine dioxide.  It is now referred to as MMS 1, which is what I am commenting about.  There is another chemical added to the line now called MMS 2.  Regarding the comment about Pool Shock: it is not MMS 1 but MMS 2, a completely different chemical (hypochlorous acid) with different properties and dosage recommendations, and I cannot comment on it as I have never used it.  If you had at least read Humble's website, you would know this difference and not say MMS is essentially pool water without making the distinction that it is MMS 2 you are talking about.  Further, Pool Shock contains other chemicals not included in MMS 2, in my understanding.  And even further, Humble does not hide this fact, but says MMS 2 is the same chemical as the primary chemical in Pool Shock.  I'll wager you hadn't heard of the brand-name Pool Shock before you read that.  It is not MMS 1, so please don't try to trick people by talking about one chemical to discredit another.

Another debating trick is to answer a question with a question with the implication that it disproves the opponent's statement: 

[I said] The science does exist, and Mr. Humble is knowledgable of it.[and you said] Does Mr Humble have any actual advanced science qualifications?  No?
You even answered your own question on my behalf, without my permission, with yet another question, as if to say you know something I don't.

I essentially know nothing of his credentials, but I know it has absolutely no bearing on whether The science does exist, and Mr. Humble is knowledgable of it, or if it works as he describes.  Think about it!  There is no causal connection between Jim Humble and whether chlorine dioxide cures illnesses in humans, just as Alexander Fleming and Howard Florey didn't cause penicillin to kill bacteria.  Therefore one's only recourse is to conduct one's own trials and experiments.  We're not discussing Jim Humble but whether MMS might work.

In his time John Snow's findings were rejected.  Doctors believed in the miasma theory back then, and thus, in a way similar to Dr. Campbell's inability to see any future validation of MMS, could see no possible benefit to be got from cleanliness.  Doctors went from studying a cadavre to seeing a patient or delivering a baby without washing their hands (why bother when they're going to get all bloody again anyway?)  Because of this blindness, medical Hygiene had to wait until after Dr. Snow and others died and the acceptance of Louis Pasteur's germ theory of disease (which also took medicine a long time to accept).  Yet hygiene and medical hygiene are now the most life-saving practices of all.

These men might be considered lacking in advanced science qualifications by today's standards and, indeed, Pasteur's qualifications and methods were severely questioned in his day (and that pointless debate goes on).  Their qualification is that they discovered something important.  Someday we will know whether Jim Humble, working in the field as did Snow, Pasteur, et al., has discovered something important.

I'm not trying to compare MMS to hygiene, but only to say:  Until we know, we do not know, and to engage in any speculative criticism only is to stall our knowing.

Dr. Campbell is talking about very high doses when she says it will cause damage.  The U.S. EPA's safety guidelines of 1 mg per litre of water is roughly equivalent (in my calculations) to the lower MMS dosage recommendations (2 or 3 drops in a glass of water).  (Humble recommends starting even lower to determine if one has a particular sensitivity.)  See the wikipedia page regarding chlorine dioxide's uses as an industrial bleach (at 95% solution) and especially this page for those
EPA guidelines.

In all fairness, I will also link to the wikipedia page on MMS, which attempting to be factual, nevertheless repeats hearsay similar to Dr. Campbell's which government officials and agencies have sometimes stated without substantiating them.  For example the statement that MMS is a 28% solution of sodium chlorite, as used by some government agencies and the press as a scare tactic, is true but misleading as they neglected to mention the process that must be completed to make the treatment, which changes it from sodium chlorite and greatly dilutes it.  It cites one death (which I will mention below) and only one other case of a severe reaction.  All of the quoted warnings are speculative.  All in all, the page is not very informative and far from conclusive.

There are other substances that are used as industrial bleach that are not harmful to humans in the right form and quantity, such as oxygen.  So, even though chlorine dioxide is used as an industrial bleach, this fails to prove either that it doesn't kill pathogens or that it is unsafe at the much lower concentrations.  The industrial bleach application is so different than MMS that it has nothing to do with MMS – just another debater's decoy – but not as obvious as if one said oxygen is used as an industrial bleach and therefore breathing air will kill you.

Dr. Campbell demands citations from me, yet gives none for her statement that chlorine cannot do what is claimed for MMS (because there are no trials or scientific studies supporting what she says to cite).  This is an attempt to discredit MMS by casting doubt on me.  But I have nothing to do with MMS; MMS is MMS whether I exist or not.

Regarding the case of someone dying after taking MMS:  Firstly, I must point out that no-one knows for certain whether she prepared it properly and dosed herself correctly.  Secondly, she was already weak from malaria, but the accounts never say how weak she was.  Thirdly, the press always omit to mention that the coroner on this case, though under pressure to find MMS as the cause, concluded in the official report that there was no evidence found that MMS contributed to her death.

And finally, every medicine in use today has had cases of death, even such over-the-counter medicines as cough syrups and cold tablets.  There is apparently almost no substance on earth that someone isn't fatally sensitive to.

And on a positive note:

MMS may well be in your town water supply.

It may well be in your mouthwash.

There is a toothpaste recommended by dentists in the United States called ClO2Sys that is based on chlorine dioxide.

The quote above from a wikipedia page stating that it kills viruses, bacteria, and other pathogens.

The double-blind study I cited.

I notice that Dr. Campbell never allows for any positive possibility that MMS could work.  Everything she says about it is negative.  This is surely a warning flag of a biased argument.

Well, I think I've just about covered everything!

And the Noah's Arc comments are just vitriol.  Let's ask Noah whom he'd choose, a kindred spirit trying his best to save the world, or the critic?  I know whom I would step aside for, but he probably would want to stay behind to help the flood victims instead.

Visible links:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gram_staining
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chlorine_dioxide#Uses
http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/toxfaqs/tf.asp?id=581&tid=108
http://www.umf.org.nz/what-is-umf-honey
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1569027/pdf/envhper00463-0059.pdf
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Snow_%28physician%29
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miracle_Mineral_Supplement
http://www.master-mineral.org

You guys have to team up against me now? I didn't realise my comments had gone live and been blasted.
You shouldn't be surprised - if comments aren't obviously spam then of course they will go live. They then become available for anyone who cares to, to comment on in return.

I am perfectly well aware of how electrons are shared between charged particles. This is not the same as sodium hypochlorite 'ripping up to 5 electrons' off pathogenic bacteria only, somehow leaving all other bacteria along (& your gut is full of them), which is what Jim Humble claims. Gram staining relies on properties of the bacterial cell wall (extra membrane vs none), but makes no distinction between those that are & are not pathogens.

Your reference to UMF honey is a red herring, partly because - unlike MMS - is does appear to work as claimed, and also because we do have likely mechanisms for its action. Similarly antibiotics - students learn something of their mode of action in our first-year biology classes; it's not a mystery.

And how would the deadly poison that you claim ClO2 to be ‘get round the body, anyway?’ to do its deadly work?
Are you serious??

This wikipedia article says,
It is more effective as a disinfectant than chlorine in most circumstances against water borne pathogenic microbes such as viruses, bacteria and protozoa - including the cysts of Giardia and the oocysts of Cryptosporidium.

And at what concentration?

The pdf you link to describes a study on a limited number of individuals, such that there were only 10 in each arm of the study. This is rather small to be basing any definitive conclusions on. I also note that the authors say that "In several cases, statistically significant trends were associated with treatment; however, none of these trends were judged to have immediate physiological consequence. One cannot rule out the possibility that, over a longer treatment period, these trends might indeed achieve proportions of clinical importance." Given that some of the statistically significant trends they describe involve negative changes in blood cells (structure & function), saying that they "cannot rule out" the possibility of longer-term harm is putting it mildly.

I have not argued that MMS or its derivatives build up in the food chain; this is a straw man on your part. It is not the same as the cumulative damage it can cause in those using it on a regular basis. (For goodness' sake, even on MMS websites you can see people talking of vomiting blood after using it, & being told this is normal!)

Personal use of MMS is not a clinical study, it is - as I've pointed out before - simply an anecdote.

Incidentally, this link doesn't work: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miracle_Mineral_Supplement http://www.master-mineral.org. However, the main wikipedia page on MMS is not exactly supportive of anything you've said here.

C Jones,

If you are so insistent that anecdote must trump all, then please consider the accounts where MMS has harmed patients as the evidence you need to confirm that it can cause harm and should not be promoted.

You noted some cases are given on the wikipedia page for MMS. Dismissing these essentially out-of-hand has you both demanding that anecdote rules (it doesn't), then, when the accounts don't suit you, dismissing them.


Briefly regards things you've written -

“I didn't realise my comments had gone live”

You wrote the comment to Alison's blog, so you must have expect it would be published. Why else write it?

By the way, it's polite form to not post comments anything like that length, but if you want to write at length put it up on a blog, etc. (as you did), then just post the link to the full thing with a brief introduction to what is there.

“No, Grant, what Alison wrote is not fine, not because it's against MMS but because it is opinion misleadingly stated as fact, and it is uninformed about the science involved. You both are stating your ‘educated’ opinions only, but insisting they are factual and definitive.”

To repeat what I said earlier, Alison’s presentation is fine. You should remember that our statements are what what is known about the chemistry of ClO2, etc., not our opinions per se.

Your reply misses or avoids a key point we wrote.

I (and Alison) never said that chlorine dioxide would not kill bacteria. It's well-known bleach does. What I pointed out was that is that it would not be *specific*. It would not preferentially react with pathogens, and not the patient's body, but would react with whatever is around it.

A fundamental in developing a remedy is that it must affect the pathogen more than the patient. The remedy must have some specificity and/or preferential effect. ClO2 will react with everything around it that it can react with indiscriminately, including the patient.

This is not an opinion but a direct application of what is known about the chemistry of ClO2.

Your description of how chemical reactions occur is a red herring. (I'm quite familiar with chemical reactions by the way.)

“If you're saying that other drugs and chemicals that harm pathogens don't harm the patient, how do you propose to explain how chlorine dioxide is the exception?”

- I did not say the former and ClO2 is not "an exception", plenty of other chemicals are harmful to people.

“We also know that many cures are accepted without knowing how they work. […]” is a red herring, ditto for the UMF sideline. (As it happens I've written on honey, reviewing one research paper investigating how the properties of the honey under study contributed to it's antibacterial effect.)

You quote the CDC sheet as stating that ‘Chlorine dioxide is a very reactive compound and breaks down quickly in the environment,’ and ‘Both chlorine dioxide and chlorite react quickly in water or moist body tissues,’

- This is exactly what I was saying, that ClO2 reacts immediately with what is around it. If what is adjacent to it is the patient's body tissue, then that's what it'll react with. It is indiscriminate it, it doesn't "wait" until it happens to be near a pathogen.

"I'm not defending […] You, however, cannot claim any direct experience, therefore, no matter how informed you are on existing science of ClO2, you must qualify all of your statements as assumption-based, speculative opinion or, better, say nothing.”

- you can't force anecdote to rule over what is known about chemical reactions and so on.

"Your intent is apparent, to slay quacks,"

- in some _metaphorical_ senses, yes - to counter the harm they can do to others. In the case of MMS, it can and has harmed others.

"The lack of clinical trials is not proof that something doesn't work, only that no-one has done one yet."

- This would also mean you can't say it does work. There is, though, basic science to draw on -- the chemistry of ClO2 and so on -- and there are case examples to draw on of MMS and related chemicals harming patients.

(re “ Then how do you explain your previous, ‘Anecdote = data . . .’ ” - if you read the context it's clearly a typo mistyping = for ≠ or possibly a blog software issue.)

Thank you both for your comments. I guess my straw man is having red herring for tea then.

Time will tell, when the trials are actually done, if science can explain my and others' anecdotes of it working, and others' of it doing harm. For the sake of Mankind, let us not be closed minds.

Cheers
cj

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Recent Comments

  • C Jones: Thank you both for your comments. I guess my straw read more
  • Grant: C Jones, If you are so insistent that anecdote must read more
  • Alison Campbell: You guys have to team up against me now? I read more
  • C Jones: You guys have to team up against me now? I read more
  • Alison Campbell: Yes, Grant, that's one of the silliest parts of it read more
  • Grant: ’C. Jones’ - Alison’s presentation is fine. MMS is nonsense. read more
  • Alison Campbell: The science does exist, and Mr. Humble is knowledgable of read more
  • C Jones: Dear Alison, Your critical thinking is a bit weak. You read more
  • Alison Campbell: If there were 2 people wanting to get on the read more
  • James Miller: I'm glad that there is information like this out. Despite read more