Analysis of Lorraine Day Infomercial (2004)
Stephen Barrett, M.D.
A 30-minute infomercial featuring an "interview" of Lorraine Day, M.D., is promoting a videotape in which Day claims to have cured herself of "terminal" breast cancer through a 10-step program that features prayer and a "raw food" diet. Donald Barrett, who conducted the interview, is president of ITV Direct, which produced the infomercial and processes orders for the tape. Below is a transcript with my comments inserted in bracketed type. For additional Information on Dr. Day's story, see Quackwatch.
DONALD BARRETT: Hello, my name is Donald Barrett, and welcome to another edition of ITV. Our guest today is medical doctor and cancer survivor with a miraculous story of recovery. In 1993, she was diagnosed with life-threatening breast cancer. After refusing to be pressured into chemotherapy, radiation or surgery, her doctor sent her home to die. She discovered in this country that there are natural healing techniques being suppressed that can prevent and/or reverse disease. She's now 67 years old and she looks better than ever. Dr. Lorraine Day, welcome to our show today.
DR. LORRAINE DAY: Thank you very much.
BARRETT: Now, you're a medical doctor, correct?
DAY: That's correct. Orthodox medical doctor. Have been for 25 years. [This description is misleading. She stopped practicing medicine at least 10 years ago and began challenging certain mainstream medical beliefs at least 15 years ago.]
BARRETT: What are your credentials?DAY: Well, I was—I graduated from the University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine. I'm an orthopedic trauma surgeon; I was Vice Chairman and Associate Professor of the Department of Orthopedic Surgery at the University of California San Francisco Medical School for 15 years; and I was also Chief of Orthopedic Surgery at San Francisco General Hospital. So I have been in the heart of academic, orthodox, mainstream medicine for virtually all of my career. [This description is misleading. She may have been "in the heart of academic medicine" for most of her career. However, her "Cancer Doesn't Scare Me Anymore" video states that she stopped working in 1994 as part of her self-treatment program.]
BARRETT: Now, how did you find out that you first had cancer?
DAY: Well, I had a small lump on my chest—really tiny—and I didn't think anything of it because it was fairly high up on my chest, but it bothered me when I put my seatbelt on. So, I thought I'll just have this taken off. And I went to a plastic surgeon friend of mine, had it taken off under local. He didn't think it was anything; neither did I. And when we found out the biopsy report I already had cancer all through my chest wall. [Day has posted the pathology report from her first operation to her Web site. The report states that the tumor extended past the margins of the biopsy specimen, which was about an inch in diameter. It is not possible to tell from the report how far the tumor had spread at that time.]
BARRETT: So, not only was it a little spot of cancer, it was all through your chest.
DAY: All through my chest wall at the time. They could not get clear borders in the biopsy. And I had a second biopsy too. These were done at well-known cancer centers and the biopsy report was infiltrating ductal adenocarcinoma of the breast, even though it was fairly high up. [The purpose of the second biopsy was to try to get what was left behind. Day has not disclosed enough of her records to determine whether the second specimen had clear borders which might mean that all remaining tumor had been removed.]
BARRETT: Now, why, as a medical doctor, why would you refuse chemotherapy or radiation or even surgery? I mean, that's what most doctors recommend.
DAY: Right. Well, when we talked about surgery I did have the biopsy and later on I had, what we call, a debulking procedure just for pain relief. But I did not have a mastectomy. I refused a mastectomy. The reason I didn't go with any of those techniques is, first of all, chemotherapy is poison. Radiation is very destructive to the immune system. ["Poison" is a scare word that she uses to misrepresent the true situation. All substances are "poisons" if taken in huge or excessive amounts, but the word "poison" should be reserved for substances that are highly toxic in tiny amounts. The proper way to evaluate drugs is to compare benefits to risks. When properly prescribed, the benefits of cancer-fighting drugs greatly exceed the risks. Moreover, immune damage occurs in the treatment of only a few cancers, and the system generally bounces back after treatment ends.]
I have seen thousands of patients die from the treatment we give them. [Few doctors see "thousands" of patients die during their entire medical career. Even assuming she did, how could she possibly determine whether they died of their disease or from their medical treatment? Most such determinations would be both difficult and time-consuming. And what about Day herself? During the late 1980s, she was on major television talk shows complaining about the risk of AIDS to surgeons. A realistic "doctors are killing people by the thousands" claim would have been far more newsworthy than her AIDS fears. Yet she says nothing about attempting use her media connections to bring any such problem to public attention.]
Doctors and dentists will tell you don't get too many x-rays. X-rays cause cancer. And yet, when you have cancer then we, doctors, tell them, oh, now you have to have huge doses of exactly what we told you to avoid because it causes cancer. And there are many articles in the medical literature about chemotherapy causing secondary cancers later on, even if they survive the first cancer because chemo is poison. [The underlying principle of medical care is that the expected benefits should exceed the possible adverse effects. Day doesn't mention that secondary cancers are not common and that most if not all of the people who develop them would have died much sooner without their treatment. To "document' her "secondary cancer" claim, Day's "Cancer Doesn't Scare Me Anymore" video identifies several publications that are easy to look up. The most significant is a study of 182 children and adolescents who were seen at the Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo New York. The researchers reported that only 28 (15%) of them developed a second cancer at an average of 15 years later and most of these lived significantly longer after being treated. Considering that Hodgkin's disease was 100% fatal before treatment was developed, the study is a monument to the success of standard treatment. Only a few chemotherapy agents have some ability to cause cancer. However, when these are given to patients, the incidence of new cancers is very low and, in many cases, survival rates are increased.]
BARRETT: So, what you're saying is chemotherapy and radiation actually cause cancer?
DAY: That's correct. And there are numerous articles in the literature and every doctor knows this. [Again, she fails to place this in perspective, which would require comparing benefits to risks.]
BARRETT: Somebody out there who is watching right now, maybe they have cancer, maybe a loved one has cancer, they're probably saying why would my doctor recommend chemotherapy or radiation if they cause cancer. [The obvious answer is that the benefits of appropriate treatment exceed the risks.]
DAY: Because they don't know anything else to do. What they're trying to do is decrease the size of the tumor or destroy the tumor, and in many cases they will do that. However, while it is destroying the tumor, it's destroying good cells, too, and most of your immune system. The reason your hair falls out and you vomit your insides out when you have chemotherapy is because it's destroying good cells as well as bad cells. And so it's always a race. Are you going to kill the patient first or destroy the tumors. But, you see, you never really cure the cancer because you've done nothing to reverse the factors that cause cancer. [Not true. Some types of tumors are curable. The cure rate depends on the type of tumor and how early it is discovered. But Day's statement is additionally misleading because it omits consideration of how many cancer patients prolong their life by having treatment.] Cancer is not caused by a deficiency of chemotherapy nor a deficiency of radiation. [This statement is not logical. Pneumonia is not a deficiency of antibiotics; and appendicitis is not a deficiency of surgery. Many types of cures do not involve involve correction of a deficiency.]
BARRETT: Let me ask you this. Does chemotherapy or radiation work for some people?
DAY: Well, it doesn't ever work for anybody. In other words, they never get well. [Day is either woefully ignorant or lying.]
BARRETT: So there's nobody out there that got well through chemotherapy or radiation?
DAY: No. They don't ever get well. They may survive, but they don't get well. In other words, they don't reverse their cancer. What they do is. . . If you have termites in your house I can get rid of the termites by putting an atomic bomb under your house, and the termites will be gone, but so will your house. And that's what chemotherapy does. It destroys your immune system. [Termites can be killed by proper application of chemicals. So can many cancers. The statement that chemotherapy destroys the immune system is false.]
You see, the body is made to heal itself. If you have cut on your hand, that cut will heal unless you do something really strange to try to keep it from healing. If you pick it open every day or if you put dirt in it, it will not heal. But if you just leave it alone it will heal. The body is meant to heal. And so when we develop cancer it's because of the way we're eating and living. [This statement is misleading. Cancer has many causes. Some are related to diet and environmental factor; others are not. Some cancers have a hereditary causative factor.] It doesn't fall out of the sky and it's not just cancer. It's everything else. Every other disease. Parkinson's and Lou Gehrig's disease and lupus and heart disease. We give them to ourselves one day at a time by the way we eat and way we live. [Diet and lifestyle are a causative factor in some diseases—including some types of heart disease and cancer—but most diseases have no known connection.] The good news is we can reverse them. [This is a gross exaggeration. Diet and lifestyle modification can be very helpful in some conditions, but Day implies that her advice will work against everything.]
BARRETT: There's doctors out there that still recommend chemotherapy and radiation.
DAY: Oh, sure.
BARRETT: And you're saying there are natural approaches that can actually help people with cancer.
DAY: Well, there are natural approaches that can actually get you well. Chemotherapy and radiation never get you well. [This is false and dangerous because it may persuade people to abandon effective medical care.]
BARRETT: Okay. When you were diagnosed with cancer you refused chemotherapy or radiation, although you had the biopsy . . . like you explained.
BARRETT: Tell me what happened then when you went home? How did you discover this plan to get well?
DAY: Fortunately before I developed cancer I had been speaking out on some other medical issues and I had done a lot of major media, "60 Minutes" and "Nightline" and "CNN Crossfire" and all those, and . . . talking about another medical issue that was not being made clear to the public. [She is referring to her fantasy that there was a government cover-up of information related to AIDS.] And so I started getting a lot of letters from people saying if you think there is a cover-up in that instance, you ought to see the cover-up in cancer cure. And I thought, oh, come on. I was very high up in academic medicine. I would know.
Well, no, not true. Doctors are the last to know because they are totally propagandized with drugs and surgery. That's all we're ever taught in medical school partly because the pharmaceutical industry controls a lot of what is taught in the medical schools because they contribute the research funding for medical schools. So, anyway, I started investigating this before I ever knew I had cancer and I was actually going around the country talking to people who I had heard had gotten well from cancer, and investigated and found out that they had been biopsied by legitimate doctors and legitimate hospitals with cancers that were virtually 100% fatal. Liver cancer, pancreatic cancer. And here they were alive and well and had no orthodox therapy. [Neither diagnosis nor treatment effectiveness can be reliably determined by "talking with people." Proper evaluation requires careful data collection and statistical analysis.]
BARRETT: Using totally natural methods.
DAY: Totally natural methods. And so I actually had my own national radio show, which was called “Truth Serum” where I was interviewing a lot of alternative doctors about these kinds of things. During that period of time I found out I had cancer. I knew I was not going to go the orthodox route and the first thing I did was I changed my diet completely, but diet alone is not enough to get you well from cancer or other serious diseases. [This description is contradicted by what she says in her videotape. The video described how she began "the orthodox route" with two operations. The first was the excisional biopsy in which a 1.7 cm specimen was removed. The second was a wider excision done with the hope of removing the cancerous areas that had been left behind, but Day has refused to release the medical records that would enable others to evaluate what happened.]
BARRETT: So, at first you were just experimenting with diet alone?
DAY: That's correct.
BARRETT: So you changed your diet completely?
DAY: And I got on the right diet. But then I was all right for a while, for eight or nine months, and then suddenly my tumor returned because, you see, I hadn't changed anything else in my life. And so my tumor returned in about nine months and when it returned it was a little larger then. It was about the size of a marble. And then I thought I'm in serous trouble. And so I started trying one alternative after another, after another, and none of them worked. And I knew was in serious trouble and I got sicker and sicker and sicker until eventually I was bedridden. [The cause and nature of her six-month illness is not clear from this description.] I was bedridden for six months. I got to the point where I couldn't eat and then—or I couldn't drink. And at one point I was not expected to live through the night. But what I found through this experience, and as you said earlier, I, as a physician, I was an agnostic for most of my adult life, but when you know what every other doctor knows and you know there is no hope for you with orthodox methods, I turned to the Lord. And I started praying and I started reading my Bible, and I realized there were totally natural things in their natural form that can get you well.
BARRETT: And you say things came to you from the mail sometimes . . . through newspapers.
DAY: Right. Sometimes somebody would give me a book; sometimes I would be impressed to study in a certain area. And actually at that time I had triple vision, I was so sick and so toxic. And my husband would have to . . .
BARRETT: You were seeing threes.
DAY: Three. Right. I couldn't read. My husband would have to read to me because I couldn't read. And so I started studying in these various areas and then suddenly I realized that there was more to the plan than just diet. And when I started including these other nine steps, the plan has 10 steps, then I started getting well. And from the time I understood that I had the plan together, it only took eight months for the cancer to reverse itself.
BARRETT: And you had a tumor, and our crew is going to bring up the pictures. . .
DAY: That's right. I had a tumor . . . [A picture said to be of Day with a large tumor is shown. It is not clear from the description, however, whether this was a cancer or merely a cyst (fluid-filled mass). Her videotape said her cancer grew from pea to grapefruit size in "just over three weeks." I doubt that a solid tumor would do that.]
BARRETT: But it was the size of a grapefruit.
DAY: That's right. It was the size of a large grapefruit. And there are side views, and front views, and a close-up view. You can see the tumor is huge. Now, I had a portion of that tumor. . .
BARRETT: And in nine months later the tumor went away?DAY: That's right. I had a portion of the tumor removed just so it wouldn't open up and have a big open wound on my chest and for pain relief, and they sent me home to die. [It would be very interesting to find out whether the treating physician actually said this.] By that time I still had cancer all through my chest wall, in the nodes under my arm and in the nodes at the base of my neck. [She has refused to release medical reports to substantiate this.] But within that—that gave me some relief from pain and they thought they would just make my death easier. But when I got on the plan, which is all very simple, when I got on the plan. . .
BARRETT: It's a 10-step program.
DAY: Ten steps and it's simple, but it's not easy. It's simple because all the things are out there in nature, but it's not easy because you have to change. [It's more than "not easy." Among other things, the patient must stop work, eat a very restrictive diet, and give up watching commercial television.]
BARRETT: And all 10 steps are absolutely free, too. [That's if you don't count the cost of not working and the cost of avoiding effective treatment.]
DAY: Everything except food and you have to buy that anyway.
BARRETT: We have to buy that anyway.
DAY: All free.
BARRETT: But here's the question because I think everybody out there has heard of somebody that has probably healed themselves of cancer naturally.
DAY: Right. [I don't know of any medically validated cases of people healing cancer with food, dietary supplements, prayer, or other "natural" methods.]
BARRETT: Maybe they've heard about it on the news, or they've read it on the Internet. But what about the people that say everybody is different. Everybody is different. Not one health plan is going to work for everybody.
DAY: Well, actually everybody is exactly the same on the inside. Okay. We couldn't have textbooks if we weren't all the same on the inside. If you came to me and you said I have pain in my shoulder and I said, well, maybe it's your appendix. And you say no, my appendix is down here. And I say, no, we don't know. Everybody is different. We don't know where your appendix is. Of course, we know. Our personalities are different and the outside of our bodies may look different and our faces are different, but inside we're all the same. Your stomach works exactly like my stomach and your intestines work like my intestines. That's why we can have books—as doctors, we can have textbooks of anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, neurophysiology because everybody is the same. Everybody is exactly the same on the inside.
BARRETT: Why does everybody think that everybody is different? [It's also a myth promoted by quacks in order for people to try methods that clash with scientific knowledge. They say that even though a remedy for a serious disease has not been shown to work for other people, it still might work for you.] Your example absolutely makes sense.
DAY: That's right. Well, everybody likes to be different. They say, you know, I'm special. Well, we are all special. We are all special because we are different with personalities. But if you went to a doctor and a doctor had to start from scratch with everything, why go to medical school. It's just a crap shoot every time somebody comes in. I don't have a clue as to where anything is.
BARRETT: Right. Hold on to that thought. I want to talk about genetics in a minute. But if you're watching right now and you would like some more information on Dr. Day or her 10-step program that she used to get well, pick up the phone, get some more information. We have trained representatives standing by that can answer all of your questions. And for a limited time we're making available her video “Cancer Doesn't Scare Me Anymore.” It's a two-hour video that you put together for people out there that are confused, maybe getting advice from their friends, relatives and being pressured into chemotherapy and radiation. It gives them really a guideline to go by for them to be an educated patient. [I don't know why there would be a "limited time." Day has been selling her tapes for several years. If supplies run low, would not be difficult to make more.]
DAY: That's right. They will find out what orthodox medicine will offer them and what it will do to them.
BARRETT: So we're making this video available today for $29.95 . . . . $29.95. Pick up the phone, get some more information. And the wonderful thing about it is all 10 steps that she mentions are absolutely free except for food. So, if you want some more information or if you would like to pick up the video, give us a call.
Dr. Day, let's talk about genetics because the medical industry . . . doctors say, well, if you have cancer on your mom's side or cancer on your father's side that you're more apt to get cancer. That I'm more likely to get cancer. For instance, my dad has liver cancer and I had a brother that died of brain cancer. So they say you should be on the look out for cancer.
DAY: Well, first of all, medicine doesn't prevent cancer. They just tell you, well, go see a doctor so he can diagnose it. They don't prevent it. They just tell you when you have it. Okay. That's number one. [That's an overgeneralization. Colon, cervical, and some skin cancers can be prevented by removing precancerous growths before they become cancerous. Standard medical advice includes other preventive measures such as smoking cessation, dietary improvement, and protection from the sun's ultraviolet rays.]
But as far as genetics are concerned, virtually no cancer—maybe a few, but tiny, tiny portions of cancer are actually transmitted through the genes because, you see . . .
BARRETT: But everybody says that—even on heart disease. If your mother has heart disease you're more apt to get heart disease. Diabetes. Everybody says . . .
DAY: Well, if your mother has cancer or heart disease you are more likely to get cancer or heart disease, but not because its in the genes. You see, grandmother teaches mother how to eat, live and handle stress. And mother teaches daughter how to eat, live and handle stress, well or not well. And so it's passed down in families all right, but not in the genes. It's done by how we live and eat, you see. [About 15% of breast, ovary, colon, and even lung cancers are already known to have genetic components. More relationships will probably be discovered.] And if a mother is very stressed and handles her problems without really knowing how to relieve her stress and she eats wrong, well, that's the only way the daughter learns how. You can change that if you just change the way you're eating and living. We know that from all medical centers now. Major medical centers have cardiovascular sections where they say you've got to get on a different diet. You've got to start exercising. And they know they can reverse and prevent heart disease by those things. Well, cancer is the same thing. They know that if your father and your grandfather died of heart disease, well, you have a bigger chance but not because it's genetic. [Incorrect. It is clear that heredity plays an important role in coronary artery disease in men.]
Another illustration is if you look at the Japanese women who are in their 60s or 70s, they have a very low incidence of breast cancer in Japan because they have been eating mainly rice and vegetables and a little bit of fish. You bring those same women to America—and they've done studies on this—to America, give them the rich Western diet, put them under the same stresses, they have the incidence of breast cancer as American women. It's not in the genes. We do it to ourselves one day at a time by the way we eat and the way we live. [It's true that changes in incidence have been reported, but the reasons are unknown.] The good news is since we do it to ourselves, we can reverse it.
BARRETT: Well, most doctors say they don't know what causes cancer. Right? Everybody says we don't know what causes cancer. What is the cause of cancer? Do you have any idea?
DAY: Sure. Oh, of course. The causes of cancer are all known and they're all in the medical literature. Fifteen years ago I used to say the same thing. We don't know what causes cancer. In fact, doctors don't know what causes practically every disease and yet the answers are all out there. Even the American Cancer Society, in their Journal for Clinicians, I think it's in 1999, they say that if people will go on a vegetarian diet and exercise on a regular basis and decrease their alcohol intake, they will decrease the incidence of cancer by 33%, all kinds of cancer. [In her video "Cancer Doesn't Scare Me Anymore," Day indicates that she is referring to page 347 of the November/December issue of the journal CA—Cancer Journal for Clinicians. That issue contains three articles about diet and cancer, none of which mentions the words "vegetarian" or "vegan." There's no question that diet affects the incidence of certain cancers, but Day's discussion is simplistic, sloppy, and self-serving.] The Harvard School of Public Health says the same three things will reduce it by 66%. There are numerous articles. . . —
BARRETT: So there is medical—there's actually research to back up what you're saying, or there's research to back up your 10 steps.
DAY: Absolutely. On every single step. Such as, sunlight reduces the size of internal cancer tumors. [Every single step backed by scientific research? It's not clear to me that any of the steps is backed by scientific research. Her recommendations include stopping work, avoiding television newscasts, going to bed earlier than 10 PM every night, avoidance of refined sugar, drinking 10 glasses of water a day, breathing "fresh air" instead of indoor air, and reading the Bible for at least an hour a day. I doubt that these have been scientifically tested to see whether they can alter the course of cancer.]
BARRETT: I thought sun causes cancer.
DAY: Well . . .
BARRETT: Everybody says stay out of the sun because it causes cancer.
DAY: That's right. They did a study at Baylor University where they took two groups of experimental animals. They gave one the standard American diet, which is terrible; they gave the other one a highly nutritious diet. Then they exposed both groups of animals to the ultraviolet rays of the sun. In the group on the standard American diet, 25% got skin cancer. In the group on the highly nutritious diet not one animal got skin cancer. It's the way we're eating. [Page 162 of Day's Getting Started on Getting Well workbook identifies the study as "Res Comm Chem Path Pharmacol 1941;7:783." She apparently thinks that a single short-term study in experimental animals can overturn a mountain of evidence about human cancers? Furthermore, she appears to be presenting this as evidence that sunlight reduces the size of internal cancers. I also wonder how lab animals could be fed a "standard American diet" and how whatever happened could be widely applicable to our current population whose dietary habits vary greatly from individual to individual. ]
Skin cancer is a relatively new phenomenon in the last 60 years or so, and yet our ancestors, for hundreds of years, had been living outdoors, working outdoors and they didn't get skin cancer. It's a new phenomenon. It's because we have changed from a plant based diet, mainly eating from fruits, grains and vegetables as we did in the early 1900s, to now people are just gorging on animal products and we have all sorts of disease, including cancer. [I don't know of any data supporting these claims. Hundreds of years ago, cancer was not defined and diagnosable as it is today. Moreover, no records of its occurrence were kept. The main reason for the overall increase in cancer is that the incidence of cancer rises with age and people are living longer.]
BARRETT: Right. Now, I know you don't recommend vitamins, so to speak. You recommend whole food nutrients.
DAY: That's right.
BARRETT: Will whole food nutrients help someone fill in the holes of a diet?
DAY: Well, see, it's not so much that they fill in the holes. What we're eating is actually destroying us. It's actually causing cancer and other diseases. MSG, NutraSweet, all these things are toxin. They have terrible, terrible side effects. And so when we eat things that was processed food, they all have NutraSweet and MSG and these kinds of things in them. And so we've got to start eating natural foods. It's not so much that you're filling in the holes of the vitamins and minerals. The food that you're eating has all the nutrition in it that you need. You cannot develop cancer unless your immune system is suppressed. [That's not true. If it were true, people with HIV infections whose immune systems are severely damaged would develop the common cancers. They do not. Moreover, no known measurement of immune function is suppressed in people with early cancer.]
BARRETT: But everybody says the soil is depleted and the minerals aren't in our food.
DAY: Well, the soil is depleted. But remember, I didn't get well from cancer 100 years ago. I got well in the last 11 years. All right. The soil is just as depleted now, as you know, when I was getting well as it is now.
I got well—I started eating food that was grown organically, which means it was grown in soil that has more nutrition in it, and it didn't have pesticides sprayed on it. But you have to do the best that you can. Some people live in an area where that's not available. So then you just do the best that you can. But I drank a lot of juices because, you see, the three factors that actually cause cancer and all other diseases are malnutrition . . . . dehydration, and stress. [All diseases? Like anthrax, for example? When I see people making nonsensical claims like this I wonder why anyone would believe anything else they say.] The body is 75% water; the brain is 85% water. Every day you lose 10 glasses of water just by living. You lose it from perspiration even when it's not. You lost it from breathing because your breath is moist. You'll fog up a mirror. And you lose it because your body has to take huge amounts of water out of your cells and put it in your stomach to make digestive juices for every meal. You lose that through your kidneys and colon every day. So if you don't drink 10 glasses of water every day you are getting behind. [Day doesn't appear to consider how much water is found in foods and other drinks. But even if she meant to say 10 glasses of water overall, her number is preposterous. Under most circumstances, thirst is an adequate guide to how much water is needed.]
BARRETT: How many people out there would drink nine glasses of water a day? And then the American Cancer Society is saying you have to eat eight fruits or vegetables every day. How many people eat one fruit or vegetable every day? [Most people.]
DAY: That's right. But you see, I changed that. I started eating fruits, vegetables, and grain, and drinking lots of water and fresh homemade vegetable juice, carrot juice and green leafy vegetable juice because you've got to nourish the body. The body is sick when it develops any disease. It is sick and you've got to feed it properly. The only place the body has to get the raw materials to make new cells is by what you put in your mouth. It doesn't just, kind of, come out of the sky. You have to feed it properly.
BARRETT: So, nutrition plays a role.
DAY: Oh, a major role, but it's only 10% of the plan. There are other things in the plan such as fresh air. As I said, cancerous tumors grow twice as fast if you're breathing indoor air as if you're breathing outdoor air. [Nothing in the scientific medical literature suggests this. I can't imagine how anyone could even study such a question.]
BARRETT: Just hold onto that thought. I just want to let our viewers tune in again for a minute.
If you're watching right now and you would like some more information on Dr. Day or her 10-step lifestyle program to get well, pick up the phone and call the number on the screen. She has trained representatives standing by that can answer all of your questions. And for a limited time, only while supplies last, we have her video, “Cancer Doesn't Scare Me Anymore.” For $29.95 you can get this video. If you put it in the hands of somebody that has cancer, you could be saving their life. So, if you would like some more information, pick up the phone and give us a call.
Now, we talked about cancer an awful lot on this show. Does your 10-step program work for any other diseases?
DAY: Virtually all diseases because all diseases are caused by the same three factors: malnutrition, dehydration and stress. And that is a short version of violation of those 10 laws of health. . . [How could Day possibly know that her program would work for virtually all diseases. I doubt that she knows who buys her tapes, who views her tapes, what types of illnesses they have, or what happens to the people. Even if she were to make a conscientious effort to conduct telephone follow-ups, do you think she could gather enough data to determine outcomes with hundreds of diseases?]
BARRETT: How can such simple techniques. . . . I mean, the average person out there is saying how can such simple techniques work on such devastating diseases like cancer or heart disease, even diabetes.
DAY: Well, let me give you an illustration. When you have a headache, the average American will take an aspirin. Why? Well, headaches certainly are not caused by a deficiency of aspirin.
BARRETT: But it sure goes away fast.
DAY: That's right. We want a quick fix. All right. But, you see, headaches are caused by too much tension, too much stress, not drinking enough water, too much sugar, caffeine withdrawals, whatever. Lots of reasons. But not one single headache is caused by a deficiency of aspirin. We take an aspirin because we want a quick fix because we've been programmed to do that and because we don't really think about what's causing the headache. So we just cover up the symptoms and then what we do is the problem continues to get worse. [Not necessarily. Some people with headaches stay the same, and some get better.]
When we have joint pains, it's supposed to be a red flag to tell us something is wrong in your body. You better change something. You better start eating differently. [Diet is not a major factor in joint pain.] You better cut out the sugar. [There's no scientific evidence connecting sugar with joint pain.] You better start getting more rest. We don't do that. We just take caffeine to rev us up. We take sugar to give us more energy. We don't go to sleep when we're tired, you see. And so what we're doing is we're covering up symptoms over and over and over again. So then one day we go to the doctor and the doctor says you have cancer, or Parkinson's, or heart disease, or lupus and you say, well, doctor, how did this happen? And the doctor says, we don't know. These things just happen. [In many cases, that is true.]
But they don't. We give these diseases to ourselves one day at a time by the way we eat and the way we live.
BARRETT: But how come doctors only recommend drugs?
DAY: That's all they know. That's all I ever knew because all we're taught in orthodox medicine is to give drugs, which never cure disease. [Antibiotics can certainly cure many infectious diseases.] They only cover-up the symptoms. Any doctor will admit. . .
You see, if you're put on high blood pressure drugs, they'll tell you you have to be on them for the rest of your life. [Not necessarily. Sometimes exercise, weight loss and/or smoking cessation will normalize the pressure.] Why? Because they don't cure anything. All right. They cover up the symptoms. You still have high blood pressure. It's just that this drug is artificially keeping it low. All right. But it's not curing the problem. You can cure the problems.
So, drugs just cover up the symptoms and surgery just takes out the organ. If you went to a car mechanic and you say I have trouble with my engine and the warning light is flashing on my dashboard. And the mechanic went and got his pliers and cut the lines to the warning light, he says now it's not going to bother you anymore, you don't see the warning light. Well, you still have the trouble in your engine. [True, but it's a poor analogy. There are many situations where removing a diseased body part are curative. Day seems to assume that all illnesses reflect an underlying state of ill health. That certainly is not true.]
BARRETT: Well, you say the cancer industry is controlled.
DAY: That's correct. It is.
BARRETT: Explain—I mean, what do you mean controlled?
DAY: Well, just to give an example, in medical journal articles that doctors read . . . there are more pages in the medical journal of full color, high-priced, pharmaceutical ads than there is medical information. So when you start talking about natural medicine, when you try to get that into a journal, the pharmaceutical companies say we're going to pull our ads, and when we pull our ads you don't have any journal. [There are thousands of medical journals, and many drug companies have competing interests. Some journals carry drug ads; other do not. In order for Day's scenario to work, it would certainly have to be done secretly because if any such threat were made public, doctors and the public would be outraged. Do you think that a plan that would require participation by thousands of people with competing interests could be kept secret? Do you think that editors would quietly submit to such interference? Furthermore, if a negative report affected one company, do you think other companies would set up a boycott? And don't forget, drug companies advertise because they want to reach the journal readers. Pulling their ads would be self-defeating. It's possible that advertising has a small effect on what gets published, but certainly not enough to have a major effect on what doctors prescribe. Furthermore, it should be obvious that medical journals do publish negative reports.]
BARRETT: Well, your 10-step program, there's no return on investment.
DAY: That's correct. You know, who is going to research the importance of water because water is free, you see. But actually those studies have been done and they were done in the 30s, 40s and early 50s, and I have all those medical journal articles showing that . . .
Well, even new studies show forgiveness changes your cell structure. If you are harboring anger and you have grudges that you're holding against people, you cannot get well. You have to learn to forgive everyone who has ever wronged you. Because, you see, when you are angry—in fact, if you are angry you are more prone to die of a heart attack if you have one than if you are not angry. When you are angry or when you are stressed, the body pours out huge amounts of adrenaline from the adrenal glands and cortisol. Cortisol is like cortisone. It suppresses your immune system and the adrenaline gives you a rapid heart rate and it can give you an irregular heart rate and it all hypes you up. And so when you are under a lot of stress or when you are angry, the body pours out the hormones, actually, that suppress your immune system, and so you cannot fight disease. [This paragraph is a simplistic mixture of facts and nonfacts. Everyone has moments of anger and stress. The effect on health cannot be described in a few sentences. Morover, neither stress, depression, or any other psychological factor has been scientifically demonstrated to influence the formation or growth of cancer. ]
BARRETT: Do doctors disagree with you?
DAY: When I give you these specific things they don't disagree with that. But they just don't believe you can get well from cancer by natural methods. And you know why? Because they, like I, have been taught year after year after year after year that the only way to do it is with chemotherapy, radiation and surgery. [Doctors are taught to base their treatments on scientific evidence. Day apparently thinks that her personal revelations offer more.]
BARRETT: Why do you say the average person out there shouldn't be scared of cancer anymore? That's the name of your video. “Cancer Doesn't Scare Me Anymore.”
DAY: Because cancer is just a disease of deficiency and excess. [Simplistic nonsense. Tens of thousands of scientists have been working for decades to explore the complex combination of causative factors. Do you think Day is smarter than all of them put together?] Now, if you had scurvy, which is a Vitamin C deficiency, nobody would be too upset. They would just eat some oranges or some lemons and they would be over it. And so I say cancer is the same thing. It's just a disease of deficiency. You're not eating the right things, you're not getting enough rest at the proper time of night because the healing hormones are produced between 10:00 p.m. and 2:00 in the morning. If you're staying up all night because you're a night person, you're going to be sick eventually. And so you've got to—you've got to adhere to these laws and you can get well. All you have to do is not violate those laws. And doctors will agree that nutrition does have something to do with your health, but, they say . . . once you have cancer you can eat anything you want and it won't make any difference. But if—if doctors agree that your diet will contribute— the wrong diet will contribute to cancer then why would you keep doing it and expect you could get well.
BARRETT: Right. Dr. Day, I'm sorry. We're running out of time, but we'll have you back. Thanks for being on our show today.
If you're watching right now and you want some more information on Dr. Day or her 10-step lifestyle program, pick up the phone and get some more information. If you don't have cancer, you know somebody that does, we can drop-ship this product for you for only $29.95. We have the video, “Cancer Doesn't Scare Me Anymore.” Let that cancer patient in your life be an educated patient. For $29.95 you could be saving their life. And the wonderful thing is all 10 steps are absolutely free, except for food, which you need anyway. [Barrett doesn't mention that the video identifies the ten steps but doesn't provide enough detail to implement them. For that, the viewers are advised to buy another tape called "You Can't Improve on God."]
My name is Donald Barrett, and this has been a very exciting show on ITV. Dr. Day, again, thanks for being my guest and we'll see you next time on I-TV. Thanks for being with us.
For Additional Information
- Stay Away from Dr. Lorraine Day
- Responses to Our Criticism of Dr. Day
- Correspondence with Seventh-day Adventist Official
- FTC Action against Donald Barrett (Re: "Supreme Greens")
- Wallace I. Sampson, M.D., helped prepare this analysis. He is a retired cancer specialist who headed the medical oncology division at Santa Clara Valley Medical Clinic and also served as a Clinical Professor of Medicine at the Stanford University School of Medicine.
- For The Record, Inc., of Waldorf, Maryland, transcribed the infomercial videotape.
This page was revised on August 3, 2004.