(NaturalNews) Health freedom has just been handed a significant victory by the United States District Court for the District of Columbia, which ruled last week that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) violated the First Amendment rights of a nutritional supplement company when it censored truthful, scientifically-backed claims about how selenium can help reduce the risk of cancer.
Gary Null filed a lawsuit in New York City in April against the maker of a nutrition supplement called Ultimate Power Meal, alleging that he had suffered constant pain, kidney damage and internal bleeding from the product's recommended daily regimen. Ultimate Power Meal is one of the "health" supplements packaged under the label of ... Gary Null, a nationally prominent pitchman for homeopathic remedies. Null is suing the manufacturer who supplies the product on which Null affixes his Ultimate Power Meal label. (According to consumer advisers at Quackwatch.org, Null is "one of the nation's leading promoters of dubious treatment for serious disease.") [New York Daily News, 4-28-10]
In the latest evidence otherwise, a 1,500 patient trial presented here at the American Society of Clinical Oncology meeting, showed that taking selenium supplements did nothing to prevent the recurrence of lung cancer in patients who had their tumors surgically removed. If anything, selenium appeared to make the disease more likely to recur and kill people.
The ten-year trial led by researchers at the MD Anderson Cancer Center took patients (mostly smokers) who had been operated on for early stage lung cancer and gave them either 200 micrograms of selenium, a typical dose in many supplements, or a placebo.
After five years 72% of patients taking selenium were alive and cancer free, compared to a greater 78% of those who got a placebo. While the difference was not statistically significant, it suggested that excess selenium might be harmful to smokers.
The bad selenium lung cancer result follows another big study in which selenium and vitamin E were found to do nothing to prevent prostate cancer. A big third trial a few years ago found that taking beta carotene supplements increased lung cancer risk. "People thought beta caroten was like chicken soup, that it couldn't possibly be bad. But it was clearly harmful," says Karp.
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