August 22, 2003 edition of the Edmonton Sun, Staff Writer, Jeremy Loome, wrote an article entitled “Cancer Scam Alleged” with “former city man at center of accusations over infomercial.” The article was written as a hatchet job on Robert Barefoot, a very proud graduate of the Nortern Alberta Institute of Technology, NAIT, 1967. Since his graduation Bob Barefoot has, with his fellow PhD co-authors, authored 7 scientific publications and he has written 3 books, “The Calcium Factor“, “Death By Diet” and “If It Glitters“, the first two of which are best sellers. He also has numerous international patents. His recent infomercial, with Kevin Trudeau, was the most watched informercial in history. As such it has become extremely controversial.
Because of Robert Barefoot’s references to the claim that calcium supplements can reverse a host of diseases, which are supported by hundreds of scientific publications. The FTC deemed that the claims were being attached to the calcium product, coral calcium, being sold, even though Barefoot did not claim that the product itself cured anything, as can be verified by an examination of the text of the show. Bob Barefoot believes that the FTC is just doing its job and exercising its mandate. The restrictions of the United States’ laws on what can be said concerning a nutrient’s relationship to a disease when stated in conjunction with the sale of nutritional supplements are severe. Those restrictions make it difficult to reflect the worldwide scientific community’s understanding of the importance of this nutrient and its relationship to certain diseases in the marketplace. I encourage the public to do their own research and to discuss the application to their own health with their medical practitioner.
Calcium is an essential nutrient in our daily diet and is a key factor in a wide range of biological systems within the body. Its role in disease prevention and treatment has been studied, and continues to be studied, by numerous scientists around the world. A search on the US National Library of Medicine’s PubMed system reveals more than 17,000 scientific articles on calcium and its relationship to cancer. In particular, clinical trials have examined the link between calcium consumption and its positive effects on colorectal cancer, one of the most common cancers in Canada (the Canadian Cancer Society estimates that this year 18,000 Canadians will be diagnosed with colorectal cancer and 8,300 will die from it). While the study of calcium continues, its importance is becoming widely recognized even among the more conservative members of the scientific and medical communities. The 2001 “Physicians Desk Reference for Nutritional Supplements” chapter on calcium states that calcium has anti-osteroporotic activity and may also have anti-carcinogenic, antihypertensive and hypocholesterolemic activity.
The problem that Robert Barefoot has with the article “Cancer Scam Alleged” is that many of the statements made were false, and therefore Barefoot believes that the public was deceived. Dr. Barrett, a retired Psychiatrist with no medical license, and an obvious vendetta against Bob Barefoot, was joined by his calcium expert Robert Baratz, owner of a hair removal and ear piercing salon in Braintree, Massachusetts. Barrett is currently being sued by many others for his slanderous attacks.
A California Appeals Court District #1 has already ruled, October 15, 2003, that he is biased, and “beyond any credibility” in the area of nutrition. Thus, Dr. Barrett will be handled by the courts. For more information go to “www.bolenreport.net” and ask for “Steven Barrett: Cease and Desist Order and Demand for Satisfaction”. The real problem is the author of the article who allowed this man to spew his warped, and totally unsubstantiated conceptions before the people of Edmonton, my home town. He allowed Barrett to tell his readers that “there are people who are going to die as a result of what they have been doing” which is taking coral calcium. Of course this is false and slanderous and the author, Jeremy Loome, will never be able to give his readers the names of the victims that don’t exist, although his readers should insist that he do so. Also, millions of people have been consuming the coral calcium for hundreds of years, and so far, no one has died as a result. When Barefoot asked Loome why he did not inform his readers about Dr. Barrett, his response was that the story was about Bob Barefoot and not Dr.Barrett. When Barefoot objected that his failure to inform his readers would result in a fraudulent story, Loome responded, “so sue me”.
Dr. Barrett, who is not a chemist, advises the people of Edmonton to buy calcium carbonate which he declares is the same as coral calcium. I disagree with the Edmonton Sun’s characterization of Drs, Stephen Barrett and Robert Baratz as “medical experts”. I do not believe either are experts on calcium and its relationship to disease. I suspect neither has published peer-reviewed literature based on original research concerning calcium, and I can find no articles by them in the calcium scientific literature. Neither Barrett or Baratz are considered to be experts by the scientific community. A real expert can see a huge difference between coral calcium and calcium carbonate.
Coral calcium has the preferred calcium to magnesium ratio, 2:1, calcium carbonate does not. Coral calcium has about 70 trace nutrients, calcium carbonate does not. Coral calcium has marine microbes to assist in digestion, calcium carbonate does not. Coral calcium, an aragonite, has over 1000 time the surface area of calcium carbonate, calcite. Also, studies done by the Japanese show that most of the calcium form coral calcium is absorbed by the body while very little of the calcium from calcium carbonate is absorbed. For example, Dr. Kunihiko Ishitano, in his publication “Calcium Absorption from the Ingestion of Coral-Derived Calcium By Humans” shows that the 2:1 calcium:magnesium coral is responsible for a dramatic increase in the absorption of calcium by the human body (up to 70% with the low grade coral being much lower). Also, Dr. Taishido Setagaya, of the University of Tokyo, in his publication “The Problem on the Lack on Ingestion of Calcium and Magnesium in Japan and Coral Calcium” write that the required 2:1 calcium:magnesium ratio can be found in “special” marine coral. Finally, coral calcium has hundreds of years of history with probably millions of testimonials, calcium carbonate does not. Jeremy Loome is doing a real disservice to his readers with his mistaken advice. Jeremy Loome’s claim that doctors advise that the “oxygen link to cancer was disproved more than 60 years ago” was not substantiated, while the man who made the link, Dr. Otto Warburg, won two Nobel prizes because of the oxygen link to cancer. Also Dr. Baratz’s, contention (Council Against Health Care Fraud) that “people are being duped into believing something that has no scientific support at all” is just simply false. Barefoot has hundreds of scientific documents and there are thousands more for Dr. Baratz to read. Also, Dr. Baratz would do well to read Barefoot’s books.
Jeremy Loome’s claims to what Barefoot said are disputed by Barefoot as being out of context and therefore misleading. Barefoot does take exception, however, to Jeremy Loome’s slur of Dr. Carl Reich. Loome states that Barefoot “failed to mention that Reich was stripped of his Alberta license in 1986”. Although Barefoot did not state this, he assumed that any good reporter writing a story should already be aware of the facts. Loome also should have been aware that his fellow reporter Gary Davies wrote a four page article on Dr. Reich in the Sept/Oct edition of the City Scope magazine where he called Dr. Reich “a man ahead of his time” and “the Father of Preventive Medicine”. He also failed to mention that Reich was stripped of his license for declaring that “calcium cures cancer”. Several years latter, in October 1998, the Journal of the American Medical Association wrote that “calcium supplements reverse cancer and make cancer grow back to normal”. Since this article, many more have been written so it does appear that Dr. Reich was indeed, ahead of his time. He was a great man and a great doctor and Barefoot is very proud to be the co-author of the “Father of Preventive Medicine”.
Dr. Barrett, a man without a medical licence and a man who has been declared by the courts as “biased and beyond any credibility” uses his bad reputation to give Robert Barefoot all the bad press he can get. Barrett, who has declared war on Bob Barefoot, represents “Quack Watchers” which is appropriate as they are all “Quacks”, only capable of watching and not participating, who are interfering with legitimate medical research. History has taught us that all of the most advanced and famous medical practitioners, including Dr. Semmelweis, Louis Pasteur, and Joseph Lister, were all once considered to be quacks by their medical peers who now honor these men. It is therefore an honor that Barrett and company consider that I am in a league with these great men.