One of the most pernicious lies promoted by the antivaccine movement is a trope that I’ve labeled the “toxins gambit.” Basically, it’s the lie, oft repeated in hysterical terms, that there are all sorts of horrible toxic chemicals in vaccines, and it is those toxic substances that are responsible for the claimed adverse effects of vaccines. Now, it is true that there are substances in vaccines that can be toxic, but the toxins gambit completely ignores a little thing known as the dose-response curve or, if you want to go hundreds of years back in time, the admonition attributed to Paracelsus that the dose makes the poison. So, yes, some vaccines contain formaldehyde, but it’s such a small amount that it is overwhelmed by the amount of formaldehyde normally produced by the body. Similarly, yes some flu vaccines still contain the mercury-containing preservative thimerosal, but it, too, is such a small amount as to be harmless.
Part of the reason that the toxins gambit persists, besides that it’s very simple and very wrong, is that it’s a goldmine for quacks. Back in the day, before thimerosal was removed from all childhood vaccines in 2001 and even a few years after that, chelation therapy was sold as a means of treating “vaccine-induced autism” by “detoxifying” the mercury being blamed for it. Never mind that chelation therapy is a potentially dangerous treatment that killed a five year old. Indeed, “detoxifying” is a key component of a lot of autism quackery.
Apparently, everyone’s favorite con man quack (but I repeat myself) Mike Adams has decided to get in on the action, releasing a video last week on How to naturally detox from mandatory vaccine injections forced upon you by the medical police state. It’s something I had meant to write about earlier, but I was sidetracked by quacks killing a baby, Facebook’s having become a tool for antivaccine loons to use to harass pro-science advocates, and a painfully misguided post on how giving to cancer charities is a waste of money. Never let it be said that I don’t usually get back to posts like this, for they are to me as catnip to a cat, as you can see here:
If you’re being forced to take a vaccine against your will (by a totalitarian medical regime like California), are there things you can do to protect yourself from vaccine toxins?
You bet there are!
Vaccines contain mercury, aluminum, MSG, formaldehyde and other adjuvants such as squalene. These are all neurotoxic substances that can cause permanent brain damage, autism, seizures, comas and even death. This is precisely why vaccines cause autism and Asperger’s in some children as was openly admitted by a top CDC scientist named Dr. William Thompson.
The key to surviving this assault on your body is to eliminate these chemicals quickly. In this video filmed at our Consumer Wellness Center Laboratories, I reveal nutritional strategies for accelerating your body’s natural detox so that you can safely survive a vaccine assault that’s forced upon you by a coercive, fascist medical regime.
OK, first of all, Thompson never “admitted” that vaccines cause autism and Asperger’s. As vile and clueless as I now think William Thompson to be, he never stooped quite that low, although certainly antivaccine activists like Andrew Wakefield and Brian Hooker want you to think that’s what he said. Of course, it’s amusing to see how Adams tries to sell his message using the same antivaccine dog whistles that other, less radical antivaccine-sympathetic activists (like “Dr. Bob” Sears) use; i.e., equating vaccine mandates to fascist government oppression.
What’s really simultaneously hilarious and painful is to watch his video, in which Adams tries his damnedest to look like a real geek of a scientist. He even goes so far as to wear a geek T-shirt whose message will only be understood if you have a fair amount of knowledge about mathematics, as he sits in his faux laboratory (as he did before when asking for samples of Flint tap water to test) behind him. Not surprisingly, Adams begins by braggin about his mass spectrometer. Hilariously, he brags about how good he is at measuring mercury and how he found so much mercury in flu shots when in fact he found as much as the package insert says is there.
By the 2:00 mark, Adams has shown pictures of children who (he claims) were poisoned by vaccines to have either brain damage or autism and is claiming that what’s really “deadly” about vaccines is the chemical adjuvants. After that come the lies that the adjuvants are “not tested for safety at all.” He even pulls out the old antivaccine trope that the placebo used in the placebo group in clinical trials of vaccines includes the adjuvants. Of course, from a clinical trial design, that’s actually the best design if you want to show that it’s the vaccine antigens themselves that are responsible for the specific immune reaction, but Adams, like most antivaccine fanatics, lies by omission, forgetting the number of studies that use plain old-fashioned saline as the placebo. This issue came up in the comments after a recent post about Gardasil as well, and it’s a common antivaccine lie. None of this stops Adams from claiming that the vaccine industry is run by “criminals” and “profiteers” who “harm children for money.”
Project much, Mikey?
After all, Adams talks about mercury in vaccines in the form of thimerosal over an image of metallic mercury, which thimerosal is not. For someone claiming that vaccine manufacturers use fraudulent science, Adams is quick to lie a lot himself, by implying that thimerosal is basically the equivalent of metallic mercury when in fact it is an organomercury compound. He also points to monosodium glutamate as a neurotoxin. Of course, MSG is not an adjuvant, either. Ditto formaldehyde, which is a favorite bugaboo of antivaccinationists and has even been pointed to by our good friend Dr. Jay Gordon as evidence of “toxins” in vaccines. Hilariously, seeming the the only chemical Adams doesn’t mention in this part of the video is the one that really is an adjuvant: Aluminum salts.
In any case, Adams then goes on to claim that for someone to be “OK” after a vaccine shot, that person has to be able to quickly clear “potentially deadly toxins.” This is, of course, nonsense that forgets the maxim that the dose makes the poison and, in particular, how little of each “toxin” is in vaccines. To illustrate his point by mentioning a warning on the Gardasil package insert that some can pass out after the vaccine. Never mind that the reason girls (and now boys, given that Gardasil is recommended for them too) can pass out after a vaccine is not due to “toxins” in the vaccine but rather to a vasovagal reaction to the shot. It’s a reaction that occurs in girls and boys of that age in reaction to any shot, sometimes in reaction to giving blood. It is not an indication of something horribly toxic in the vaccine. And, no, unlike what Adams claims, if you inject a million children with a vaccine, there will not be 1,000 who suffer neurologic damage.
Of course, given that to him vaccines don’t harm those who can “rapidly clear” all the evil chemicals in them, Adams is more than happy to tell you how to clear those chemicals. So, using the rationale that mercury can compete with zinc to bind with various proteins, Adams claims that taking a lot of extra zinc before vaccination will protect against “mercury toxicity.” This is, of course, silly given the tiny amount of mercury involved. It’s even sillier because the main mechanism of mercury toxicity is thought to involve its ability to irreversibly inhibit enzymes that contain selenium, such as thioredoxin reductase. Zinc isn’t even recommended as a treatment or preventative for mercury toxicity. Adams also recommends—of course!—and organic diet and multimineral supplements to promote “mineralization.”
Next up, because of all the oxidation pathways that mercury can effect through its inhibition of selenium-containing enzymes (although Adams fails to mention that), Adams recommends lots of sulfur from garlic, raw egg yolks, and, of course, MSM supplements. Never mind that there is no recommended daily allowance for sulfur. Again, never mind that the amount of mercury in vaccines is so small as to be irrelevant as far as causing defects in these pathways.
After this, Adams ceases even to try for plausible mechanisms. He starts recommending compounds he views as anti-inflammatory because vaccines “cause inflammation” and because adjuvants are designed to cause inflammation to increase antibody response. His favorite? Turmeric. He even admits that there’s no evidence. Of course, there’s no good evidence for pretty much everything else Adams says here; so why not turmeric? Then of course, there’s vitamin C because of its “antioxidant properties.” There’s also vitamin D because Adams claims it “activates the immune system.” Never mind that if inflammation is what you’re worried about, activating the immune system might not be such a good idea. After all, it’s the immune system that mediates inflammation. He even claims that there are parts of the immune system that can be activated by vitamin D that can even eliminate chemicals as well.
Funny, I don’t recall ever reading about that in any of my textbooks on medicine or immunology.
Next up, Adams recommends avoiding toxic foods and—of course!—drugs, like fried food, alcoholic beverages, acetaminophen, and others. Of course, it’s a good idea not to consume alcohol in excess, just as it’s also a good idea not to eat too many fried foods, but doing so is not going to lessen your chance of a nonexistent “vaccine injury,” mainly because the vaccine injury Adams is frightening viewers about doesn’t exist. And, no, licorice root isn’t going to do anything either.
Adams’ conclusion interested me because it could very well be flipped around as a reason that vaccination shouldn’t be feared. Adams claims that people who lead healthy lifestyles can get rid of all these toxic chemicals in vaccines. Well, doesn’t that mean that the woo-friendly people who watch Mike Adams videos shouldn’t be afraid of vaccines? According to Adams’ “logic,” it’s really only those lazy people eating crappy diets and not exercising who have to worry. If you’re doing all the “right things” for yourself and your baby, according to Mike Adams, you have nothing to fear.
But who ever said Adams cared about internal consistency in his message? Vaccinate away, woo believers. Mike Adams said it’s fine as long as you make sure your child has had some zinc supplements, vitamins C and D, proper nutrition and hydration, and no acetaminophen. Your kid will be fine. Of course, your kid would be fine without all the woo, but if it takes a little woo to get you to vaccinate your child, I can live with that as long as it’s not harmful woo.
Thanks, Mike Adams!