1: HIV/AIDS and Nutrition
Global Health Facts
Facts at a Glance
State Health Facts
Kaiser Family Foundation - HIV/AIDS
The Global Challenge of HIV and AIDS
.pdf. A large file. You may want to right click and save to your
hard drive, rather than open it in your browser.)
From these data-rich pages you can see that 60 million people have
become infected with HIV, including more than 20 million who have
already died; You can also
see maps displaying data by country or state. The Kaiser Family Foundation's
HIV/AIDS timeline shares milestones in the history of the disease, including
national and international initiatives.
Grouppe Kurosawa Natural Medicines Blog
The founders of this site did a stint together in a minimum-security
US Federal prison camp. When they got out, they created an excellent
blog full of in-depth
information on natural medicine for diseases. Be sure to download the "Current
HIV Treatment Protocol." (See News this issue.)
In 1984, Bradford McIntyre was told to prepare his affairs, that he'd
be dead in six months from AIDS. Twenty-two years later, he's still here,
sharing the keys to his health: a combination of plant sterols, live foods,
supplements, intravenous vitamins and minerals (including vitamin C, vitamin
D, magnesium, and selenium), meditation, exercise, visualization, reiki, prayer,
along with selected mainstream medicines. He launched the web site, Positively
Positive, in 2003. Don't miss the videos and his thoughtful essays on
Plant Sterols and Sterolins: A Review of Their
This 1999 paper in the Alternative Medical Review shares impressive results
from plant sterol consumption: human patients taking phytosterols were able
to maintain stable immune cell numbers over the course of more than two years,
while controls not receiving the phytosterols showed typical CD4 cell loss.
The two nutrients being administered were beta-sitosterol and beta-sitosterol
glycoside. (Beta-sitosterol is chemically similar to cholesterol, with an extra
This is a terrific site from Belgium, showing the chemical structures of close
to 40 phytochemicals.
USDA National Nutrient Database - Nutrient Lists
Search the USDA National Nutrient Database
While generally helpful, the USDA list of "Reports by Single Nutrients," unfortunately
does not include beta-sitosterol. The online database also does not report
beta-sitosterol levels by food. However, if you download the full USDA Nutrient
database, you'll find beta-sitosterol levels listed for 65 foods. (Modify
the Access query named "Food Item Query by Nutrient," to select
Nutr_No=641.) Pistachio nuts, almonds, hazelnuts, and macadamia nuts appear
high on the list of beta-sitosterol-rich foods. This complements the foods
listed at phytochemicals.info above, which identifies soybeans, wheat germ,
and pumpkin seeds as good sources. Margarine is also showing up high on the
USDA nutrient list, presumably because of the soybean oil source, but consuming
margarine is not recommended, unless you can find a trans fat-free version.
Note that nutrient levels can vary tremendously, based on the soils and other
growing conditions. The USDA values are averaged lab results.
FitDay.com is a terrific site, showing the percentage of calories that
come from protein, fat, and carbohydrates. Note that greens contain
amount of protein – far more than most people realize! Raw spinach is
64% protein, for instance. Collards are 45% protein. Cooked red kidney beans
are 38% protein. Chicken curry is 27% protein. Beef bologna is 16% protein.
(Human milk is only three percent protein.) The easiest way to see these percent-of-calories
numbers is to select only one food at a time and look under "Calories
What Really Causes AIDS
.pdf; large file)
Harold Foster identifies selenium, cysteine, tryptophan, and glutamine as the
key to preventing and treating AIDS. The PDF above is a free download of his
book, What Really Causes AIDS. He suggests that serum selenium levels are actually
a better predictor of AIDS mortality than CD4. Note that the widespread use
of commercial fertilizers depresses the uptake of selenium by crops.
Nutrients and HIV
This impressive three-part series on nutrition and AIDS is from the Alternative
Medical Review. Together, the articles cover beta carotene, selenium, vitamins
A and E, zinc, B-vitamins, magnesium, N-Acetylcysteine (NAC), Alpha-Lipoic
Acid, L-Glutamine, and L-Carnitine. This list includes antioxidants, vitamins,
minerals, and amino acids.
A Randomized Trial of Multivitamin Supplements and HIV Disease Progression
Multivitamin supplements delay the progression of HIV disease. This finding
offers an effective, low-cost way to delay the need for antiretroviral therapy.
AIDS Education Global Information System
This is a sleek, content-rich site, including news, publications, and
references for all audiences. A search on the word "nutrition" yields
Nutrition Guidelines for Agencies Providing Food to People Living
with HIV Disease
The Association of Nutrition Services Agencies is made up of more than 125
organizations, which together serve over ten million meals a year to people
living with AIDS. The group has lobbied for Reauthorization of the Ryan White
CARE Act, which provides close to half the funding for these food programs.
TheBody.com is described as the "Complete HIV/AIDS Resource." The
Diet, Nutrition, and HIV page is content-rich.
Nutritional Issues in HIV
Implications of HIV/AIDS on Food Security: Related Resources
Resources from the University of California San Francisco School of Medicine
HIV AIDS Diabetic Practice group of the American Dietetic Association
This resource is intended for members of the American Dietetic Association.
Some elements on the site can be viewed by non-members.
Lark Lands Nutrition and HIV Treatment Pages
If you turn the sound on at larktreatments.htm, you'll hear a rendition
of "I Will Survive!" This site includes some terrific nutrition-related
papers and fact sheets from the now out-of-print book, Positively
Well: Living with HIV as a Chronic, Manageable, Survivable Disease.
Nutrition and HIV Forum
AIDSMeds.com offers forums on a range of subjects, including one on Nutrition
Nutrition for PLWHA – Counseling
a very large file.)
FANTA Focus Area: HIV/AIDS
HIV/AIDS: A Guide for Nutritional Care and Support 2004
Sukuma Wiki means "push the week." It's also a Ugandan term
for dark green leafy vegetables, which help stretch small amounts of meat into
meals through a week. These counseling cards for people living with HIV and
AIDS were developed in Uganda, with technical support from Food and Nutrition
Technical Assistance (FANTA) and LINKAGES. The focus is on energy-building
foods, body-building foods, and protective foods. With a few concessions to
mainstream approaches (for instance, pictures of margarine and powdered milk),
the site provides overridingly terrific information. The body-building food
pictures include grasshoppers, one sure way we know these materials weren't
designed for a US audience! The FANTA Project offers a wealth of additional
information on nutrition and HIV/AIDS at the two additional URLs.
Section 2: Integrating Traditional Healing Practices
Sandor Katz is a "fermentation fetishist" and the author of Wild
Fermentation: The Flavor, Nutrition, and Craft of Life-Culture Foods. HIV-positive
for several decades, Katz credits fermented foods, along with community and
a protease cocktail for his current state of health. Learn all about kimchi,
miso, tempeh, farmer's cheese, yogurt, kefir, and mead, along with some
less familiar fermented foods such as dosas, idlis, and ogi from his wonderful
book. The second and third URLs above feature a print and audio interview with
Herb Resource Foundation
The mission of this group is "to foster improved world health
and well being through the informed use of herbs."
Using Our Traditions: A Herbal and Nutritional Companion for Kenyan
Looking to Traditional Medicine for Treatments for AIDS
Trust for Indigenous Culture and Health
The Trust for Indigenous Culture and Health is putting out an exciting
herbal and nutritional guide that will focus on conditions found in
people whose immune
systems are compromised. They note that the book will be useful to families
concerned with health issues, whether they are living with HIV infection or
not. The book's release coincides with the publication of this Townsend
Traditional and Modern Health Practitioners Together Against AIDS
Ministry Slams DA AIDS Charges
Ministry Calls for Traditional AIDS Drugs to be Recognised
Alternative AIDS Medicines Ready for Testing
The use of traditional herbal treatment, Ubhejane is controversial in South
African Herbal Medicines in the Treatment of HIV
This paper from the Nutrition Journal offers a caution, including references
to adverse effects of traditional African treatments for AIDS. "The widespread
use of herbal compounds by Africans living with HIV/AIDS should be of concern
to clinicians and policy makers."
Can Herbal Medicines Combat AIDS
One post says, "It is a joke to dream that herbal medicine can combat
AIDS We will be living in a fool's paradise to give credit to herbal
medicine." Another writes, "Some African herbalists or native doctors
as they are called in Nigeria, are superior to Western medical doctors."
Gambia: Herbalists Form National Association
subscription to view)
Traditional Herbs Treating AIDS
This is an intriguing release. "Thanks to a decade-long research efforts,
the Wudajinqiu Traditional Medicine Engineering Center in Shenzhen has successfully
extracted valid active elements from traditional herbs that can curb HIV viruses." If
anyone can track down further information or the original research, please
let me know.
Revivo: 12 Traditional Chinese Herbs to Activate the Immune System
Testimonials and opinions on Chinese Medicine – Revivo
Revivo pages at Nature Products offer impressive charts showing the effect
of a traditional Chinese herbs combination on CD4 counts (up) and virus counts
(down). The Nature Products Network is a web portal of the Tian Zi Biodiversity
Research and Development Centre.
Section 3: Mainstream and Dissident Views on HIV/AIDS
Alive and Well
This is a good starting point for learning about alternative voices on AIDS.
Alive & Well San Francisco
Alive & Well San Francisco is a tremendous resource. The blog is a good
place to start to learn about new content on the site. The Library includes "Notable
Documents in the History of HIV/AIDS" and a section on Nutritional Therapy.
The links page features a veritable who's who of AIDS dissidents. The
group has an interesting and active listserv, as well, although membership
is limited to residents of San Francisco. Note that non-residents may have
read-only access to the listserv. I learned about the following fascinating
two articles by Rebecca Culshaw, for instance, via such read-only access.
Why I Quit HIV
Why I Quit HIV: The Aftermath
In "Why I Quit HIV," Rebecca Culshaw, PhD explains why she "decided
that enough is enough." She says, "I can no longer in any capacity
continue to support the paradigm on which entire career has been built." Her
Aftermath piece, responding to the hoards of email she received in response
is at least as interesting as the original article. She questions the quantitative
use of PCR to establish viral load and illustrates central flaws in the theory
that HIV causes AIDS. [Editor's Note: Rebecca Culshaw's article
is reprinted in this issue of Townsend Letter.]
Out of Control: AIDS and the Corruption of Medical Science
This article by Celia Farber appeared in the March 2006 issue of Harper's
Magazine. Featuring topics such as the theories of AIDS dissident Peter Duesberg,
the article stirred quite a controversy. One AIDS activist wrote that the article
was an "ugly excuse for journalism." The
New York Times reported
on the Harper's story and noted that "Ms. Farber says that neither
she nor Harper's endorse Dr. Duesberg's position."
Errors in Celia Farber's March 2006
Article in Harper's Magazine
This is a 37-page rebuttal to the Harper's article above, written
by eight scientists and AIDS advocates.
This website presents the scientific evidence that HIV is the cause
of AIDS and that benefits of antiretroviral drugs (ARVs) outweigh the
risks. It was
created as a rebuttal to Celia Farber's Harper's article.
More Rebuttals to the Celia Farber Harper's
The HIV AIDS Connection
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) presents a brief paper on why
there is "overwhelming scientific consensus that HIV causes AIDS," followed
by links to more resources that focus on the HIV-AIDS Connection
AIDS Debate: The Most Controversial Story You've Never Heard
VIRUSMYTH: A Rethinking AIDS Website
Duesberg on AIDS
Dissident AIDS database
AIDS - Prevention & Curing Protocol
The AIDS Wiki bills itself as "a community gathering place for AIDS dissidents
to assist and foster activism." I can't pick a favorite among these
sites; they're all interesting and informative.
Natural Treatments for AIDS/HIV
In addition to some interesting content on some possibly suppressed cures for
AIDS, there is also a good set of links on healing HIV and AIDS at the bottom
of the page
Cade Fields-Gardner, et al. A Clinician's
Guide To Nutrition In HIV and AIDS. American Dietetic Association, 1997.
• Clark, Hulda Regehr. The Cure For HIV / AIDS. New Century Press, 1993.
• Romeyn, Mary. Nutrition and HIV: A New Model
for Treatment. Jossey-Bass,
1998. (Excerpted at: http://www.thebody.com/jossey/romeyn.html).
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