Wednesday, October 15, 2008 by: Mike Adams (see all articles by this author)
Key concepts: Vitamin D, Parkinson’s and Health
(NaturalNews) Following the release of a new study strongly correlating vitamin D deficiency with Parkinson’s disease, the mainstream media (MSM) has once again gone out of its way to intentionally distort the findings of the study and mislead readers about vitamin D. The study was conducted by Emory University, the same university that has just had $9.3 million in NIH grants frozen because of undisclosed ties between its researchers and the drug companies (http://www.naturalnews.com/News_000362_…). Thus, from the start, we already know that Emory University researchers are working for Big Pharma and likely have a financial stake in promoting pharmaceuticals or discrediting natural alternatives.
Nevertheless, the study — which was published in Archives of Neurology — examined 300 people: 100 with Parkinson’s, 100 with Alzheimer’s and another 100 they called “healthy” (which, by modern medicine standards, could have been seriously diseased but not yet diagnosed with disease). The study found that 90% of the healthy people had sufficient vitamin D levels in their blood. In the Alzheimer’s group, the number was lower: 84%. And in the Parkinson’s group, it was lower still: 77%.
What the study showed was a statistically significant correlation between low vitamin D levels and higher risk of Parkinson’s disease.
Why vitamin D is a miracle nutrient for the brainTo anyone who knows even a little bit about vitamin D, these results are not surprising. Vitamin D is essential for proper functioning of the nervous system. The protective effects of vitamin D on cognitive function are well known and well documented. You can see a sampling of the thousands of clinical studies on vitamin D and brain function here: http://www.vitamindcouncil.org/science/…
Thus, it is no surprise that patients who lacked sufficient levels of vitamin D would suffer poor brain function and eventually be diagnosed with neurological disorders such as Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s, both of which are entirely preventable through nutrition.
But the relationship between vitamin D and neurological function remains a great mystery to those in the mainstream media (or so they want you to believe). In fact, they’ve gone to great lengths to misrepresent these clinical findings and try to twist the story around to imply that vitamin D causes Parkinson’s!
The false headlinesToday’s BBC health headline declares, “Parkinson’s linked to vitamin D.”
The implication, of course, is that vitamin D causes Parkinson’s. There’s a word conveniently missing from this BBC headline: “deficiency.” The correct headline should be, “Parkinson’s linked to vitamin D deficiency,” right? But no, that would tell the truth. Instead, BBC editors have decided to remove the word “deficiency” and, in doing so, completely flip the meaning of the headline, making readers believe that taking too much vitamin D might cause Parkinson’s disease. (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/76667…)
Not to be outdone by the BBC, The Press Association parroted the same loopy logic in their own headline: “Vitamin D ‘link’ to Parkinson’s” (http://ukpress.google.com/article/ALeqM…). Just like the BBC headline, this carefully-phrased headline also implies that vitamin D causes Parkinson’s.
The Craegmoor Healthcare news website in the UK went even further, declaring that sunshine is linked to Parkinson’s! Here’s their headline: “Sunshine linked to Parkinson’s” (http://www.craegmoor.co.uk/news/industr…)
Do they really think readers are so stupid as to believe sunshine exposure causes Parkinson’s disease? They’re apparently willing to print the false headlines and find out.
Composing such obviously-false headlines requires an incredible leap of really bad logic (or a sinister agenda). But mainstream media journalists have had a lot of practice over the years, reporting lies about 9/11, the War on Iraq, vaccines and just about every other contentious topic gullible news consumers have swallowed without a single moment of critical thinking. To become a mainstream media journalist, the first thing you have to do is leave your brain at home. It’s far better to arrive at work with a hollow head that can be filled with nefarious agendas and false facts.
Some of those journalists work at HealthDay news, of course, where today’s headline in the Washington Post hilariously declares, “Parkinson’s Patients More Prone to Vitamin D Deficiency.” (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/co…)
In case you missed that, this HealthDay headline implies that Parkinson’s disease causes vitamin D deficiency! Wow. The idiocy of it would be hilarious if it weren’t being reprinted in a news source read by so many people. I suppose scurvy causes vitamin C deficiency, too, and cancer causes vitamin D deficiency. Maybe osteoporosis causes calcium and magnesium deficiencies. It is a worrisome sign of the times when the mainstream media engaged in such blatant logic reversals and prints them as fact.
If it all sounds familiar, it should: George Orwell’s 1984 book provided the template for such newspeak:
War is peace.
Freedom is slavery.
Ignorance is strength.
And vitamin D causes Parkinson’s disease, if you believe HealthDay news.
I’ve found HealthDay news, by the way, to be the very worst agenda-driven health news misinformation organization in America. HealthDay editors have famously authored some of the most intellectually-challenged stories I’ve ever seen, including one that claims people can lose weight by chugging sodas and eating ice cream and pizza (http://www.naturalnews.com/022453.html).
HealthDay editors have also authored insanely stupid stories on vaccines (http://www.naturalnews.com/022479.html) and even a story that claims lip balm defies the laws of physics and bends light rays (http://www.naturalnews.com/023122.html).
Where does HealthDay find these people? And what do they make them smoke before they start work in the morning? Given how incredibly retarded some of the news reports are that come out of HealthDay, it’s no surprise that they’ve achieved global distribution with CNN, the Washington Post, Yahoo, Business Week, Forbes, MSN and even iVillage. What these organizations do is copy and paste the misinformation from HealthDay and run it as their own stories. This is how health lies get spread through the mainstream media.
Today, HealthDay’s home page declares, “Smoking Makes You Old Before Your Time.” Gee, really? That might have actually been news in 1973, too.
Not all the MSM journalists are complete idiotsA few mainstream media sources actually got the vitamin D story right. Astonishingly, even WebMD managed to state the correct headline: “Low Vitamin D Level Tied to Parkinson’s.” (http://www.webmd.com/parkinsons-disease…)
The Telegraph (in the U.K.) also got the story headline correct. It reported, “Lack of sunshine linked to Parkinson’s” (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstop…)
Kudos to the Telegraph’s medical editor, Rebecca Smith, who apparently has a far greater grasp of logic than, say, certain editors at HealthDay. Then again, the Telegraph is a far smarter newspaper to begin with.
But if you want to find really smart news sources, you’ve got to turn to the alternative press. Check out www.Alternet.org or www.OrganicConsumers.org or www.PRwatch.org
NaturalNews, of course, remains the most trusted online destination for honest news about natural health. We don’t take money from any advertisers at all (other than Google, whose ads we don’t choose). Our only “agenda” is to empower the People with honest, independent information they can use to prevent ALL disease (cancer, diabetes, Parkinson’s, you name it…) and enhance the quality of their lives.
Far too often, the agenda of the mainstream media is to distort the truth, and in doing so, intentionally mislead readers with harmful disinformation. A careful review of mainstream newspapers, magazines and news websites reveals a clear, intentional pattern of news distortion that just happens to benefit the drug companies that fund so much of their advertising.