HolfordMyths - A forum for responding to Holford Myths, accusations and attempts to discredit

  • 3 Mar 2009
  • Reading time 17 mins
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First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win. Mahatma Gandhi

In my ongoing exploration of the role of nutrition as medicine I have frequently challenged today’s drug-based medical paradigm and exposed the distortions of corporate science, motivated by money rather than public interest, and consequently have been relentlessly under attack. Notably since my book, co-authored with medical journalist Jerome Burne, Food Is Better Medicine Than Drugs, certain drug industry funded organisations and drug-oriented individuals have campaigned to discredit my reputation by spreading false allegations. The main opponents at that time were Ben Goldacre in the Guardian, pharmacology professor David Colquhoun, the anonymous ‘holfordwatch’ and ‘holfordmyths’ and certain dieticians. Goldacre is to be applauded for, more recently, exposing the ‘bad science’ inherent in the pharmaceutical industry in his book Bad Pharma. At least we agree on something!

These days most accusations against me are made in relation to material published 10 or more years ago, and anonymously. Any attempts to responds in blogs has proven futile since my comments in the past have been creatively edited or simply not posted. Similarly, media appearances are never shown in full, but show sections of interviews out of context, usually the infuriated rebuttal of a narrow-minded medic, to further create the intended illusion. Also, by maintaining anonymity, there is no way of knowing whether the accusers are politically or financially motivated through interests with the industries that gain through the continued suppression of the truth about the power of nutrition as medicine. Alternatively, they may just be nutritionally ignorant people (medical training still excludes nutritional medicine) or atheist materialists who have somehow decided all ‘complementary medicine’ is non-scientific quackery. If so, I recommend reading Science Delusion or watching his TED talk. I believe in science and being skeptical. But I do not believe that the only way to do science is with double-blind placebo controlled trials and therefore do not base my theories only on these. Nor do I beleive in the illusion of ‘objectivity’ of scientists. Much of what is published in journals is paid for, and influenced by big business.

Martin Walker, in his 2011 book Dirty Medicine, the Handbook, published by slingshot publications, lays bear the main characters, and their commercial and political interests with big pharma (and big farmer). He has also documented the plethora of attacks commenting ““The most unfounded, unbalanced, libellous, cowardly and untruthful things are said about him (Patrick Holford) in the full knowledge that for him to mount legal action, by which he could defend his professional identity, would cost hundreds of thousands of pounds.” The associations with the pharmaceutical industry and/or organisations funded by the pharmaceutical industry are also explored in the free e-book Cultural Dwarfs and Junk Journalism: Ben Goldacre, Quackbusters and Corporate Science by Martin Walker for those who want to understand the modus operandi of the organised lobby against alternative and nutritional approaches within medicine. We have created this forum holfordmyths to correct holford myths -  false or misleading allegations - for the public record. If you have any further topics you’d like me to address please email me at patrick@patrickholford.com .

Myth: Patrick Holford has no qualifications in nutrition
He has a BSc in Experimental Psychology, an Honorary Diploma in Nutrition (DipION), is a Fellow of the British Association of Nutritional Therapy, Patron of the South African Association of Nutritional Therapy and a registered Practitioner with the Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council. He was previously Visiting Professor at the School of Social Sciences and Law at the University of Teesside, an appointment that can only be made to those with PHD status or equivalent on the basis of peer review, and director of the Institute for Optimum Nutrition where he trained thousands of nutritional therapists, now retired. He is CEO ......

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